As part of Discovery Channel’s 11-year ongoing project to classify, bust, and ultimately make meaningless the concept of mythology, MythBusters Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman have brought their laser-like skepticism to such sacrosanct cultural entities as Jaws, James Bond, and the guy from Wanted. Now they’ll be taking on the true gods of the American cultural landscape by devoting an upcoming episode to smashing implausible physical occurrences featured on The Simpsons.
“Wait a second,” you may be thinking. “Isn’t The Simpsons a cartoon?” Adam Savage is way ahead of you. “Several people were like, ‘This is a cartoon! What can you do with this?’” the special effects designer told Entertainment Weekly, totally busting your question-myth by acknowledging its existence. He went on to add that the show is focusing on the series’ “more plausible” stunts, like the time Bart turned all of Springfield Elementary’s toilets into geysers with a cherry bomb, or when Homer stopped a wrecking ball from destroying the Simpsons’ home by putting himself in between them. (MythBusters seems to be pulling most of its material from The Simpsons’ early seasons, stamping a big old “CONFIRMED” on the idea that most people don’t care about anything from the show’s last ten years.)
The Simpsons is only the first of several pop-culture touchstones MythBusters will be exploring this season. Episodes are also planned for the Indiana Jones movies (“True or false: There’s no time for love, Doctor Jones”) and Breaking Bad (”Is it really possible to look as dapper as Gus Fring does with only half a face?”), all as part of an ongoing test of the myth that rampant cross-promotion can keep a pop-science TV show relevant and profitable 13 seasons in.