On Sunday, February 5th, 2017, the Simpsons have yet again ingrained themselves in the history of popular culture. It was the 51st Super Bowl and Lady Gaga was performing during the traditional Halftime Show watched by millions around the world. Then, suddenly a scene from a Simpsons episode that aired 5 years ago was replayed live, during one of the biggest sporting events on the planet.
The Super Bowl is the most watched American TV program in history. It is the final match deciding the champion in the National Football League, the top level of American football. Some consider it an unofficial national holiday.
The Simpsons, currently in its 28th season, is probably the most famous animated TV show of all time. During the years, it has predicted numerous political and social occurrences. And often with striking accuracy. The latest – and probably most publicized one – was Donald Trump’s election.
In 2012, Lady Gaga guest-starred in an episode of the Simpsons called Lisa Goes Gaga. The episode parodies many aspects of the Lady Gaga phenomenon. In one scene, the pop-star is seen soaring above the crowd during a concert in the Simpsons’ hometown.
Gaga played a gig in the fictional town of Springfield during the season finale of the 23rd season of the Simpsons.
The similarity between the fictional Springfield concert and the Halftime Super Bowl performance is striking. Gaga flies above the crowd suspended on a harness in a similar manner.
The only difference was the missing pyrotechnical underwear which the star used to frequently wear while performing around the time the 2012 episode aired.
And of course, the internet immediately exploded.
— QUEEN GAGA (@_QLadyGaga) February 6, 2017
Another image supposedly from a Simpsons episode with the correct final score went viral after the game. It was soon discovered the picture had been doctored. No such scene existed in the 600+ episodes the show has aired since 1989.
The original scene
— WORLDSTARHIPHOP (@WORLDSTAR) February 5, 2017
The altered picture with the 2017 Super Bowl final score
— DeVante (@DeVanteP_7) February 5, 2017
Perhaps we will never know if the Lisa Goes Gaga episode really predicted the future. Yet, the imprint that the Simpsons have left on American culture in the past three decades is undeniable. After the cameo, Gaga admitted that the experience was one of the coolest things that she has ever done. Who knows, perhaps it was her making a tribute to the Simpsons instead of some kind of clairvoyance?
Either side of Lady Gaga’s halftime performance, the New England Patriots roared back to overturn the biggest ever Super Bowl deficit. They defeat the Atlanta Falcons to win their historic fifth title.