Matt Groening explains why he made the Simpsons yellow

Despite The Simpsons having run over 30 years ago, there’s a question many of us still don’t know the answer to. Why are they yellow?

Well, once you’ve taken a minute to get over just how old you feel when you realise the first episode of the animated sitcom aired in 1989, Matt Groening has the answer to the monumental question.

It may feel like a lifetime ago since you were sat on your sofa, sipping a cup of milk and swinging your legs because you couldn’t quite reach the floor, watching Homer, Marge and Bart on screen, but the Simpson family are still iconic members of pop culture across the world.

Many still dress up as members of the family on Halloween, painting their entire bodies yellow to match. But why were Lisa and the gang yellow to begin with?

The thought of them being blue, red, or even green just seems wrong – especially green, they’d look like aliens!

But why exactly did The Simpsons creator Matt Groening decide to make the Simpsons yellow over any other color?

The Simpsons’ creator wanted to make the characters unique. Credit: Disney

In an interview with the BBC back in the day, Groening revealed how he wanted to make the cartoon unique, so he wanted that to start with a dashing color.

He revealed that an animator came up with the idea of yellow and he was instantly sold.

“As soon as she showed it to me I said, ‘This is the answer!’ When you’re flicking through channels with your remote control, and a flash of yellow goes by, you’ll know you’re watching The Simpsons,” he said.

Groening also said in an interview with Daily Portal he didn’t want to pick the ‘conventional cartoon colors’ for the characters.

Back in the day, it must have been strange for viewers to see characters with a bright yellow skin tone, and probably took some getting use to.

Although choosing yellow was a stroke of genius by Groening and his team – considering the success The Simpsons has had in the last 30 years – there may be some scientific evidence behind it.

The colour theory may have had an impact on the decision to go with the bright color, as yellow is also known to have a psychological effect on the human brain.

There may be more as to why they chose colour yellow for the Simpsons. Credit: thesimpsons/ Instagram

Because of the way our eyes process light, yellow is the most visible color to the human eye.

The color also represents optimism and joy.

So when you are making a new cartoon show, a family who stick out like a sore thumb in a colour that represents joy can only be a good thing.

We see you, Mr Groening.

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