The ‘Simpsons’ Characters with the Highest Memes-to-Screentime Ratio
Since he was fired from the cracker factory, Kirk Van Houten has had more memorable memes made about him than he’s had paychecks.
The Simpsons has been on the air since 1989, long before most households had access to the internet and certainly before the explosion of image-based memes became the language, currency and central concern of the online world. Today, comedians and comedy shows will soullessly fish for meme potential with every social media intern at a Chuck Lorre project waiting desperately for some Twitter user to give their show the Kevin James treatment as the power of virality is all-too-known in the marketing world.
Despite the fact that the Golden Age of The Simpsons precedes the proliferation of memes by a number of years, the show is responsible for some of the oldest and most beloved memes in internet history — and a select few characters were verified meme-makers every time they stepped on screen. Over in the Simpsons subreddit, fans recently discussed which characters had the best rate of memes-to-screen-time in Simpsons history, with a certain balding, blue-haired deadbeat topping the list.
Here are the most efficiently memeable Simpsons characters…
As one of The Simpsons’ best bit characters, it sure seems like Springfield’s most unfortunate-looking 31-year-old spits out an endlessly repeatable quote every time he steps on screen. From “Man Getting Hit By Football” to “Nobody’s gay for Moleman,” the shriveled, bespectacled, cane-carrying is also considered to be the progenitor of South Park’s Kenny McCormick for his tendency to encounter a lethal dose of bad luck, only to appear unharmed in a later episode.
As for Moleman’s best meme, the accolade must inevitably go to, “I was saying boo-urns!”
Though he was only ever featured in the iconic episode “You Only Move Twice,” Hank Scorpio is one of the most universally beloved Simpsons side characters with enough quotes in his meager 23 minutes in the Simpsons universe to have fans repeating his best quips for the next 23 years and beyond. The megalomaniacal President of the Globex Corporation was simultaneously the most reasonable and unhinged character in the Simpsons canon, and it’s a shame Homer could only stay in Cypress Creek for a single episode — we’ll never know what would have happened if he wanted cream in his coffee.
Scorpio’s best meme is, of course, “Nobody ever says Italy.” Apologies to the cheese-eating surrender monkeys.
Simpsons fans choo-choo-choose Ralph to be among the most efficiently memeable, and it’s easy to see why. With but a few brain cells to rub together, Ralph provides the one-liner flavoring that makes the absolute most of his every moment on screen. Occasionally, Ralph will get a starring role in a literally heartbreaking episode that makes us reconsider how hard we laugh at his constant malapropisms and misfortunes, but then he’ll hit us with a line like “Hi, Super Nintendo Chalmers!” that brings us right back.
Ralph’s most memed moment is the iconic, “Go, banana!”
Kirk Van Houten
The fan-selected king of memes, Kirk may not be able to borrow a feeling, but he’ll score a few thousand likes on Twitter for any number of unfortunate moments. Kirk’s dissolving marriage and his fall from grace at the cracker factory in “A Milhouse Divided” made for some of the finest memes in Simpsons history, as he’s on the receiving end of some of the most iconic put-downs and punchlines like “I don’t recall saying good luck.”
The greatest meme from the world’s okayest divorced dad is, of course, “I sleep in a racing car, do you?”