'The Simpsons' Predicted The Arab Spring, And 5 More TV Shows Shrouded In Conspiracy Theories
An Egyptian television station has decided the United States conspired to cause the Arab Spring protests — based on a Simpsons episode. Yes, you read that right. The episode, titled "New Kids on the Blecch," which originally aired on Feb. 25, 2001, shows Bart Simpson and his boy band, Party Posse, dropping bombs on men dressed in Arab garb. The men are also standing by a vehicle emblazoned with the flag of the Syrian opposition. Which is where the conspiracy theory comes into play.
According to Israel National News, this is how an anchor for Al-Tahrir TV presented the theory:
The flag that appeared on the vehicle on which the bombs were dropped is the flag of the Syrian opposition. This is from 2001 — before there was such a thing called the 'Syrian opposition.' The flag was created before the events took place. That's why people are saying on Facebook that this is a conspiracy. In 2001, there was no such thing as the flag of the Syrian opposition.
However, according to The Times of Israel, the anchor made that statement in error.
In fact, the Syrian opposition adopted the flag used by Syria from its independence until 1963, when the Ba’ath party under current President Bashar Assad’s father Hafez took over.
Further sources trace the origins of the flag to 1932. And at the end of the day, it's a pretty big leap to announce earnestly that an episode of The Simpsons could have predicted a conspiracy involving the Arab Spring protests.
But The Simpsons are just the tip of the iceberg. Conspiracy theorists love to use entertainment to prove that something far more complex and nefarious is going on underneath the surface. Here are five of the strangest conspiracy theories involving TV shows, movies — and even Rebecca Black — that will make you question everything.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Was About Will's Afterlife
According to Reddit's Fan Theories, Will Smith's character dies in the basketball court kerfuffle mentioned in the theme song, and the entire series is about his afterlife. Uncle Phil and Aunt Viv's Bel-Air mansion is actually heaven, and the occasional visits from his parents were actually visits to his grave.
OK, sounds plausible enough, but then how would you explain why heaven would include someone as annoying as Carlton?
Steve From Blue's Clues Was All Kinds of Unsavory
When you're the innocent and dopey host of a show about a blue cartoon dog, you're bound to find yourself under close scrutiny. Steve Burns, the show's host from 1997-2002, has been everything from a heroin addict to a former porn star, according to the rumor mill.
It didn't help matters when he appeared on an episode of Law & Order as a suspect and drug addict.
Rebecca Black's "Friday" Is About the JFK Assassination
In what may be the most successful ruse in history, Rebecca Black's saccharine hit "Friday" is actually about the assassination of JFK. OK, hear them out — or rather, listen to the song (even if it's against your will). First of all, the assassination occurred on a Friday. When Black sings "Got to get down on Friday," she's referring to the Secret Service telling Jackie Kennedy to "get down" after the first shot was fired.
"Kickin' in the front seat, sittin' in the back seat" refers to the man driving JFK's car in the motorcade, who was named Samuel Kickin. The Cold War and Communism are also referenced when she sings, "everybody's rushin'" — or is it "Russian"? You tell me.
Fox Predicted the 9/11 Attacks
The latest Simpsons conspiracy theory isn't the first. In a 1997 episode, the family goes to New York and Lisa holds up a publication that shows the Twin Towers forming the "11 in 9/11." Furthermore, the pilot of the X-Files spin-off The Lone Gunmen was about a plot to hijack a 747 and fly it into the World Trade Center. The episode aired a year before the 9/11 attacks. Cue Twilight Zone theme music.
SpongeBob and His Friends Are Mutants
On SpongeBob SquarePants, the title sponge and his friends live in Bikini Bottom. Could this be a reference to living below Bikini Atoll, where the U.S. government conducted heavy nuclear testing in the 1940s and 1950s? Between 1946 and 1958, 23 nuclear weapons were detonated either on or around the atoll. Only that amount of radiation could explain a talking sponge, a dimwitted starfish, and a snail that meows.
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