On his Bad Astronomy blog, Phil Plait puts forth a novel theory about the mysterious location of Springfield, hometown of the Simpsons.

His come-to-Homer moment springs from the recent episode that featured Elon Musk ("The Musk Who Fell to Earth"), specifically a scene, pictured below, in which the SpaceX CEO is staring up at the night sky.


Plait's tongue-in-cheek outrage/bafflement follows:

LOOK AT THE MOON! It's backwards. The scene is clearly at dinner, early evening, so that's the setting crescent new Moon. But in the northern hemisphere, the tips of a waxing crescent Moon point to the left, away from the Sun ... but in that scene with Musk, they point to the right! How can that be?

There's only one way. Springfield is not in the United States at all. It's not even in our half of the world. Springfield is in the southern hemisphere!

I don't even know how to react to this information. It's as if … my whole world has been turned upside down.


We like this theory, and we love that someone with a sense of humor and astronomy smarts caught what was probably (??) just an honest animation mistake. But lest we forget, the Simpsons visited the southern hemisphere, in the episode "Bart vs. Australia," which begins with an argument between Bart and Lisa about the Coriolis effect, and spirals into nonsense (of course).


Though the episode was somewhat controversial for stereotyping Australians, it doesn't change the fact that there was an entire show built around the fact that Bart was obsessed with finding out which way the water goes down the drain in the southern hemisphere.

So Springfield can't already be in the southern hemisphere, right? But if it isn't, how do you explain the problem with the moon? BOO-URNS!


Top image via LeeJamieson on Deviantart.