Adaptation of the Samson Narrative in The Simpsons
Submission to the Friends of Fondren Library Research Awards, 2018. This paper was originally prepared for Course FWIS 101, Fall 2017: Bible in Pop Culture, given by Professor Brian Ogren, Department of Religion.
Samson, the Nazarite Judge of the Judahites, is a character who has been widely discussed among biblical scholars. Scholars’ conclusions range from Samson as a hero, to Samson as a moral lesson, from Samson as a tragic character, to Samson as a literary device. There is no one view of Samson that is overwhelmingly more popular among scholars. However, scholars are not the only ones who have taken it upon themselves to interpret and bring forth a message or meaning from the Samson narrative. The creators of The Simpsons have also taken their own spin on the story in an episode cleverly titled “Simpson and Delilah.” In this paper I analyze the use of the biblical story of Samson in The Simpsons and ultimately compare the message conveyed in the episode to those found in the biblical story by scholars. The