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Characters / The Simpsons - Homer Jay Simpson

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Homer Jay Simpson
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/homer_1042.jpg

"Lord help me, I'm just not that bright."

Debut: "Good Night"
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The father, the dope, and more or less the main character of the show. Homer is overweight, almost completely bald, and rather selfish, short-tempered and stupid, but is a good person at heart and has a bright outlook on life. Voiced by Dan Castellaneta.


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    A-E 
  • Abandoned Catchphrase: He used to say "Let's all go out for some frosty chocolate milkshakes" during the Tracey Ullman Shorts.
  • Abusive Parents: He loves his children dearly but is absolutely terrible at parenting.
  • Achievements in Ignorance: Homer managed to cause a nuclear meltdown, during a safety exercise, in a truck that had no nuclear material within it.
  • Acrofatic:
    • In "Sex, Pies, and Idiot Scrapes," he does complex acrobatics to escape Ned. This is rather odd, since Homer has often been shown out of breath from even the simplest movements (like running only a few feet in "The Springfield Connection" and "New Kids on the Blecch").
    • One flashback shows him to be a very talented gymnast in high school (until his dad distracted him and made him trip on his own feet). It should be noted that he had a much more athletic build back then, though. So him being a good gymnast is less surprising.
    • "Deep Space Homer" showed Homer in astronaut training, performing several cartwheels in rapid succession as if he were some sort of human tire. That is, of course, until he runs into the wall.
    • He performed ninja-like feats of acrobatics while practicing killing snakes for Whacking Day.
    • In "Simple Simpson" when Homer (as the Pie Man) escapes the police doing some very complex acrobatics.
    • In "E-I-E-I-(Annoyed Grunt)" he performs a standing backflip while frantically searching for the "invisible crops" in the fields of his family's farm.
  • Action Dad: Homer is a surprisingly competent street-fighter whose combination of strength, low-cunning and explosive-anger allows him to pound better trained opponents into the ground on multiple occasions; especially those who threaten his family. The fact his is not averse to using improvised weapons and dirty tricks (such as using a cinder block as an Epic Flail, which he dubs "The Defender") makes him even more formidable when he does put his mind to it.
  • Adorkable: At times, due to his lovable goofiness.
  • The Alcoholic: The all-time champion of this, but not before Barney Gumble, who is the very definition of drunk.
    Homer: And I'll get to get drunk on a Tuesday.
    Marge: Today's Tuesday and you've had six beers!
    Homer: But I'm not drunk.
  • Alcoholic Parent: To the point that one of the contact numbers at Springfield Elementary is at Moe's Tavern.
  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: Actually manages to act dumber after sometimes drinking a few too many. In "Boys Meet Curl" Marge says when he is quoting Henry V that this is what Homer sounds like when he is sober.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: His dad harps about his embarrassing childhood and his mom is a double agent who's always leaving clues only he can understand. Homer himself is this to Bart and Lisa.
  • Amazon Chaser: When Marge muscled up, he found it quite attractive. At first.
  • Ambiguously Bi: His love for Marge is obvious, and he's shown attraction to other women on occasion. He's also the Trope Namer for Stupid Sexy Flanders, has kissed a man and may have enjoyed it more than kissing Marge, complimented a naked hobo on his physique, and mourns Fat Tony like a dead lover, among other examples. Although he identifies as straight and his attraction to women is serious while his feelings for other men is Played for Laughs. He becomes incredibly uncomfortable whenever the topic of homosexuality is brought up and doesn't seem to understand it. His attraction to other men might actually stem from an attraction to himself because his ego compels him believe that he is the greatest person in the world and he sometimes daydreams about flirting or making out with himself.
  • Animal Motifs:
    • Homer is associated with apes and monkeys so often, Marge invokes this in "The Monkey Suit" to help Lisa win her case on human evolution.
    • He is also associated with pigs, mainly demonstrated through dream sequences and fantasies. In The Simpsons Game, Homer can summon a flying pig as a finishing move in the "Big Super Happy Fun Fun Game" level. He is often regarded as a pig, receives pig-based insults or gives himself pig-based metaphors/involves himself with pig-based idioms. In the "Treehouse of Horror XXVIII" segment "Mmm...Homer", Homer draws a butcher's diagram of himself for his autocannibalism, which is obviously inspired by butcher's diagrams of pigs.
  • Angrish: Frequently lapses into this, whether he is justified or not.
  • Anti-Hero: Manages to be a combination of both a Classical Anti-Hero and an Unscrupulous Hero.
  • The Anti-Nihilist: Homer openly admits that he hates his life from time to time, and he also speaks pessimistically about life and regards death as a sweet release in "Brick Like Me". However in spite of his Butt-Monkey status, he keeps going and remains hopeful that things will turn around for him. The only time he truly abandoned hope was when his hive smoker was stolen, in which he was so depressed that he refused to get drunk.
    Homer: Everything good that comes into our lives, the universe takes away. So from now on I'm just gonna lie here and never care again.
  • Anti-Role Model: Homer is well aware that he is a terrible role model and he lampshades it frequently.
    Homer: Look, if it were up to me, I'd be harassing [those manatees] with you. If anything, I'd be the guy who took it too far...
  • Atomic F-Bomb: Let (a censored) one loose in "Who Shot Mr. Burns"; basically, Homer got a tip on how to get Mr. Burns to remember his name by sending him a box of chocolates with his photo in it (well, he and his wife and kids). The ensuing thank-you card has Burns thanking everyone except Homer (his face was obscured by an uneaten piece of chocolate and the box thrown out). Boy, does Homer get pissed...
    Homer: (slowly lowering the letter, shaking with unabashed anger) Kids, would you step outside for a second?
    (Bart and Lisa gawk at their father and go running out of the room)
    Homer: F—(Smash Cut to an overview of the street, a Scare Chord, birds flying away in fear, and the entire neighborhood stopping in its tracks to look in the direction of the Simpson house)
    Ned: Dear Lord, that was the loudest profanity I've ever heard!
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: "My God!" There are times when you can already hear Homer uttering that EXACT phrase.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: He once legally changed his name to Max Power after a TV show used his name for a bumbling sidekick. He got the name off a hairdryer.
  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: At his best. Despite his abusiveness towards his son, the two of them have, at times, shown that they do love each other. He has these moments with Grampa, Lisa, Marge and Maggie as well.
  • Ax-Crazy: Sometimes when he gets really mad, but this is mostly seen in the Treehouse of Horror segments.
  • Bald of Awesome: Well, not entirely bald. He still has three hairs left.
  • Bald of Evil: It's more like "Bald of Jerkass", but Homer on his worst days really deserves this trope.
  • Berserk Button: Several. He's also known for his temper, after all.
    • On Bart's worst days, the very mention of him can be one for Homer. When Homer got institutionalized thanks in part to Bart, Homer was diagnosed with severe anger issues. Then Marge suggested maybe they shouldn't mention Bart. The nurse was... alarmed.
    You mean there really is a Bart?! Good lord!
    • During the "Who Shot Mr. Burns?" two-parter, Burns not remembering his name was this. Which resulted in making him one of the prime suspects, as before Burns was shot, Homer tells him he's a dead man as his bodyguards drag him away.
  • Big Eater: He's also the king of this trope, to the point that he's an Extreme Omnivore (he's eaten things considered highly inedible, such as the plastic bride and groom wedding cake decoration, dishwashing soap, hot wax from a candle …). In a Halloween episode he literally ate all the donuts in the world during a stay in hell.
  • Big Fun: He sees himself as this.
    Homer: Marge, the boy was wearing a Hawaiian shirt.
    Marge: So?
    Homer: There's only two kind of guys who wear those shirts: gay guys and big, fat party animals. And Bart doesn't look like a big, fat party animal to me...
    Marge: So, if you wore a Hawaiian shirt, it wouldn't be gay?
    Homer: Right. Thank you.
  • The Big Guy: While his weight is frequently brought up, Homer is also a pretty tall guy, and possesses a larger-than-life personality fitting this trope. He's also shown to be quite the fighter on occasion.
  • Black Comedy Rape: Happens to Homer twice and it's Played for Laughs:
  • Boisterous Bruiser: He is more Falstaff than Falstaff.
  • Book Dumb: Homer is not known for reading, outright failing in one episode to list any kind of book he can read at all, but he still retains an amazing breadth of knowledge, including at least some awareness of the works of Walt Whitman, how to brew several varieties of beer, and at least some knowledge of the laws of thermodynamics, despite not knowing who Isaac Newton is.
  • Born Lucky: While he's guaranteed to be the butt of plenty of jokes in any given episode, Homer tends to win contests, meet celebrities and survive near-death situations far more than any person should. He's also married to Marge, a woman who is willing to overlook his many, many many flaws and see the good in him. The episode "Homer's Enemy" is about Frank Grimes, a hard working but Born Unlucky employee, who hates how someone as lazy and inept as Homer manages to be that lucky.
  • Breakout Character: While Homer was always prominent, Bart was initially treated as the show's protagonist. After the initial wave of "Bart Simpson mania", however, Homer became the most popular character, and the show came to focus more and more on him as a result.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Even when showing signs of high-level intelligence, Homer is averse to hard work. He seems to be aware of this; in the episode where he formed a great security company and became chief of police for it, his efforts to take down the mob had them retaliate by putting out a hit on him. He bemoaned before confronting them "I finally found a job where I wasn't lazy, stupid or corrupt, and now I'm gonna get killed for it!"
  • Buffet Buffoonery: In "New Kid on the Block", Homer eats for several hours at the all-you-can-eat buffet at the The Frying Dutchman before being thrown out. He then successfully sues the restaurant for false advertisement and gets to eat there for free in exchange for the Sea Captain marketing him as Bottomless Pete: Nature's Cruelest Mistake.
  • Bumbling Dad: He provides the page image.
    Mr. Bergstrom: Lisa, your homework is always so neat. How can I put this? Does your father help you with it?
    Lisa: No. Homework's not my father's specialty.
    Mr. Bergstrom: Well there's no shame in it, I mean, my dad—
    Lisa: Not mine.
    Mr. Bergstrom: You didn't let me finish—
    Lisa: Unless the next word was "burped", you didn't have to.
  • Butt-Monkey: Even with all his jerkass tendencies, you do feel sympathy for what he goes through at times.
  • Cannot Tell a Joke: Homer fails at humorous limericks. He tries to disprove this by saying "There once was a man from, I think it was Nantucket. And anyway, he had this interesting characteristic ..." At this point he can't remember the rest, and Lenny and Carl just snicker at him.
  • Captain Obvious: Has a tendency to state the obvious (in a usually comical way), like in this lovely jewel from "The Spy Who Learned Me":
  • Catchphrase:
    "D'OH!!!!"
    "Woo-hoo!"
    "Bart!"
    "Why, you little...!!!"
    "Mmm, [insert food here]..."
    "AAAH!!"
    "Bo-ring!"
    "The Simpsons are going to [insert location here]!"
  • Calling the Old Man Out: In "Mona Leaves-a", he does this to Mona, chewing her out for abandoning him and repeatedly choosing her various agendas and Granola Girl lifestyle over her own son. It's the last thing he ever says to her.
  • Charlie Brown Baldness: He has only two little hairs on his head left as he tore it off twice when he found out Marge was pregnant.
  • Character Development:
    • While he does get progressively dumber as the years go on, he also seems to become more accepting of others.
    • A good example is "Homer's Phobia" where after initially rejecting his friendship with John because of John's homosexuality, Homer eventually overcomes his prejudice (despite that season two's "Simpson and Delilah" didn't show him being prejudiced against his gay male secretary Karl. In fact, he was oblivious to Karl's sexuality until he got kissed, and even then, he didn't react the way a homophobe would if that happened to him). Indeed in later episodes, he has absolutely no problem befriending members of the gay community and actually is more supportive of Patty (despite that he hates her and Selma because they don't care much for him marrying their sister), when she comes out as a lesbian, than Marge is.
    • Later episodes have also frequently Deconstructed his stupidity, sometimes conveying him more as a tall order Cloud Cuckoo Lander than specifically dumb, and within his own deranged nature, can actually have impressive random displays of insight.
    • There was also a point where he Took a Level in Jerkass, seemingly being a jerk for the sake of it. He's particularly bad in "Alone Again Natura Diddily", the episode where Maude Flanders dies. Nowadays it varies from episode to episode.
  • Characterization Marches On: Arguably the biggest example in the series.
  • The Chew Toy: He is constantly hurt for the sake of funny. Lampshaded in a special episode that shows a series of clips of Homer getting hurt. Even in the opening, most of the couch gags (especially in later seasons) end with him being killed, maimed, or humiliated.
  • Chick Magnet: As an adult, Homer has attracted a shocking number of beautiful women, with Mindy Simmons and Lurleen Lumpkin being some of the more prominent examples. It's become a plot point on several episodes, ones that focus on Homer and Marge's marriage. However, by his own admission, he was rejected by most women before he met Marge.
  • Childhood Brain Damage: One episode reveals that Homer is an idiot because he stuck a crayon up his nose as a child and got it jammed into his brain. In "Itchy and Scratchy: The Movie", he told Bart when he was a kid he wanted a bike but his dad wouldn't let him. So he tries holding his breath so his dad would give in. But he passed out and had to be rushed to the hospital, where the doctors say he has suffered brain damage.
    Bart: Dad, what's the point of this story?
    Homer: I like stories.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: For all his flaws, he's the most loyal friend you can have, as he'll always help his friends with their problems. Hell, you don't even have to be a close friend of him to get his help, he'll surely help you even if he only met you just some moments ago. Even his enemies, like Mr. Burns or Selma, might get his aid if he's on a good mood.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Especially in the later seasons. Perhaps most notoriously in The Simpsons Movie where he's imagining a cymbal-banging monkey... and THAT tells him to pay attention to what Marge is saying.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: As the series went on he had a lot of women falling for him either due to new gained fame or talent or just his good traits, while he will be as clueless as ever.
  • Comically Missing the Point: He almost always fails to understand metaphors, sarcasm, subtext or statements with implications. Unless he's told something bluntly and directly, it will just fly over his head. So much so that most of the examples shown in the shows own page for this trope are from him.
  • Conjunction Interruption: A Running Gag is Homer's arrogance to anyone correcting him or even vaguely giving him an order or suggestion, leading him to quickly brush them off. This at one point escalated to him snapping at a judge to shut up just so he could have the last word.
  • Convenience Store Gift Shopping: Homer has a very bad habit of doing this sort of thing. It was justified in the episode Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire, since Marge blew the saved Christmas present money on getting Bart's incomplete tattoo removed and Mr. Burns announced that none of the workers are getting Christmas bonuses this year.
  • Court-Martialed: In "Simpson Tide" when Homer joins the Navy Reserves, gets put in charge of a sub and sails to Russia, after he gets stopped he is court-martialled. But all of his judges admit to other crimes (or at least investigations) so they're not currently qualified to judge him.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Homer may be a lazy idiot most of the time, but he can pull off surprising feats of badassery when called upon. Especially if his children are involved. On the intelligence front, when properly motivated or passionate about something, he can be very efficient: across various episodes he's become a top employee for Globex, started a very successful home security business, and was able to trick Mr. Burns into making him CEO of the power plant, which he did in revenge for his rather comprehensive safety report being ignored. On the physical front, Homer is a pretty competent fighter and can and will street brawl if he must.
  • Cutting the Knot: Homer comes up with this a few times, most notably to save his children. When Bart was trapped down a well, Homer is the one who comes up with the obvious idea of grabbing a shovel and simply digging Bart out. When Lisa's automatic self-tapping shoes went crazy, everyone in the audience panicked except for Homer, who simply tripped Lisa and took her off her feet.
    Lisa: Whew! Thanks, Dad!
    Homer: I didn't think, I just acted.
  • Depending on the Writer:
    • His character varies with the plot's demands. He has been a well-meaning moron with selective common sense, so bored with life that he embraces any crazy idea he hears, and deliberately self-centered because he feels the rest of the world owes him. He's even lampshaded this:
    "Because that's the kind of guy I am this week!"
    • His physical prowess is another aspect of his character that varies. In some episodes, he's so weak that his punches can't kill a fly, and leave him completely exhausted. In other episodes, he's strong enough to use a motorcycle like a sword without breaking a sweat.
    • Pretty much his entire character hinges on what's funniest. Some episodes portray him as a well-meaning simpleton who's a danger to everyone around him, others have him be a grumbling Jerk with a Heart of Gold, while others make him an unrepentant Jerkass.
    • His level of attractiveness in-universe fluctuates from "hunk gone to seed" to "shaved gorilla".
    • Of course, his intelligence ranges from merely stupid to Too Dumb to Live. In some rare cases he can even be deceptively lucid and even be an Only Sane Man of sorts.
  • Depraved Kids' Show Host: In "Children of a Lesser Clod".
    Homer: If you're happy and you know it, say a swear!
    Nelson: Boobs!
    Milhouse: Heinie!
    Ralph: Mitten!
  • Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: Homer's constantly changing whatever his life's dream is, and while it's almost always played for laughs it is out of a genuine concern that he's a failure.
  • Dirty Coward: Undoubtedly, during the "Jerkass Homer'' years. Subverted, earlier and later. Even then he still had a lot of bravado at times.
  • Dismotivation: The show has repeatedly shown Homer's job isn't actually that difficult. A chicken or a brick on a rope could do his job just as easily, but all Homer does is sleep and goof about all day. There are more than a few given reasons; Homer feels overworked, he's got no idea what his job is, and Mr. Burns goes out of his way to make the plant dehumanizing (complete with a large demotivational plaque, to "break what's left of [Homer's] spirit").
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Strangling his son is a great example. Homer frequently unleashes this on others, due to him being easily provoked. He also goes as far as suing the owners of the local seafood restaurant because he gets thrown out of the "all-you-can-eat" area.
  • The Ditz: Not that bright at all, and one of Western Animation's most iconic Fat Idiots and Idiot Heroes.
  • Doesn't Know Their Own Child: Homer once hired a private detective to learn about his children.
  • Egocentrically Religious: On one episode, he endlessly prays to God for good luck or indulgences, which actually come true. He returns the favor later on by suing the church following an accident. In his defense, Homer believed this was God's work, as when he was praying for funds/a better home, he underwent the accident on the church grounds literally seconds later before a lawyer shows up seconds later after that.
  • Elder Abuse: Is frequently callous and distant towards his father, with the excuse that Abe himself was an Abusive Parent when he was a child. They also both still insult each other with equal vitriol.
  • Extreme Omnivore: He'll ingest anything from fancy bathroom soaps ("The Front") to plastic lobsters to a ten-pound bag of flour ("New Kid on the Block") to dishwashing liquid ("Marge Gets a Job") to radioactive waste ("E-I-E-I-[Annoyed Grunt]" and "Hello Gutter, Hello Fadder"), and on two separate occasions, has eaten live fish, and a live seal.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • A lot of people end up doing this to him, even the NRA at one point as they said his Reckless Gun Usage was dangerous and gave them a bad name.
    • For Homer himself, despite his contempt for Flanders, he has often shown horror or sadness when something truly awful happens to him. When his wife tragically died, Homer at least tried to be a shoulder to cry on.

    F-K 
  • Family Man: Despite his flaws, he still tries to keep his family together as best as he could.
  • Famous Last Words: Parodied in "Days of Future Future", where his last words before his death was, "All that's left are clever last words."
  • Fan Disservice: Whenever he appears naked outside.
  • Fat Bastard: Homer's gluttony, depending on the episode, can be taken to extremes. This can range from Homer eating to the point of being bloated and watching his belly bulge out and obscure his view of his feet, to Homer deliberately gaining weight to push past 300 pounds so that he could avoid fifteen minutes' worth of exercise at work and do his job at home. He was a bastard, in particular, in the Ullman shorts.
  • Fat Comic Relief: A combination of Fat Idiot Fat Slob Big Eater Bumbling Dad, who serves as the comic relief within his family and his workplace.
  • Fat Idiot: Possibly the Trope Codifier. Homer's main defining traits are "overweight and stupid".
  • Fat Slob: He's fat, lazy, eats like a pig and is and gets drunk often.
  • First-Name Basis: His son Bart often calls him Homer instead of Dad, probably just to mock or annoy him, and even refers to his parents as "Mom and Homer" (although he also calls him Dad at times, depending on the situation).
  • Flanderization: He started out as a strict disciplinarian; somewhat unintelligent, but still devoted to being a father.
    • His first flanderization turned him into a stupid yet lovably eccentric Manchild.
    • Eventually, Homer became a moronic Jerkass in Seasons 9-12. This second flanderization was toned down later on and, lately, depends on the writer. Throughout the series, his intelligence drops from average to "really stupid" and sometimes even clever or insightful.
    • Homer's stupidity might have been lampshaded by the writers in the 138th episode, where a fictional fan by the name of Prof. Laurence Pierce 'asks' "I think Homer gets stupider every year.", after which Troy McClure says that isn't a question, but they'll let the viewers decide for themselves, and a bunch of clips of Homer's idiocy show up.
    • His increasing idiocy may possibly be justified by the numerous head traumas Homer has been suffering throughout the years.
    • He was never exactly a model of emotional control, but by Season 15 or so, he can't seem to go longer than a single episode without running out of the room and/or weeping hysterically, often over a minor slight like the kids wanting to go to dinner with their mother instead of him.
    • Ironically his relationship with Flanders is Zigzagged. He started off resentful and jealous towards Flanders if in a passive-aggressive sort of way. Starting from Season 6 he became more and more obsessively hateful towards Flanders and obsessed with making a fool of him. This toned down greatly after Maude's death (likely because there was little way of having him torment a mourning Flanders without crossing into out-and-out vile territory), his treatment of Ned more like a playful rivalry or even just a case of Innocently Insensitive.
    • An interesting aspect of Homer's Flanderization is the role that pop culture has played into it. Unlike most media, The Simpsons redefined prime time entertainment, and reshaped the very concept of sitcoms. The show started as a counter-culture jab at mainstream "Father knows best"-type sitcoms from the 50s to the late 80s/early 90s (In particular The Cosby Show, which Matt Groening has outright stated as his inspiration). But the Simpsons became such a hit, they themselves reshaped popular culture. The Fat Idiot Father became a mainstay of popular culture. This in turn forced the entire show to adapt. The Simpsons became a satire of a society they themselves helped shape. Homer, in turn, was flanderized further, into a caricature of his old self, as that original self became much more the norm of regular sitcoms. Folding Ideas has a video essay explaining this shift in more details.
  • Flat-Earth Atheist: Particularly in later seasons. In earlier seasons he was simply not that enthusiastic a church-goer and practitioner, but he still could be seen praying at odd occasions (and apparently even pays up to $15 for a Bible just to read it by himself which may or may not be the one he hides his flask in). In later seasons, he's outright decrying God's existence despite the fact that he's arguably met God more than once (and if that didn't count, then the sheer fact that he and his family are alive and well after everything they've been through proves SOMETHING out the realm of nature is hiding in the Simpson house). Then again he also claimed his God is better than native or protestant (he was practicing Catholicism at the time) and in "Kiss Kiss, Bang Bangalore" he seems to believe He wrote the Da Vinci Code so it's more of a Rule of Funny.
  • Fleeting Passionate Hobbies: Has a tendency to get a new "lifelong dream" as the plot needs him to.
  • The Fool: In the episode "Homer Defined," Homer's accidental prevention of a meltdown at the nuclear plant inspires the phrase "to pull a Homer," meaning "to succeed despite idiocy."
  • Formerly Fit: Used to be quite trim in his youth.
  • Freudian Excuse: His mother left him as a kid, and his father didn't know how to raise him. It's also implied that his abuse of Bart was stemmed from being abused by his own father. Furthermore, his dad's blunt lack of faith in him resulting in Homer not being able to achieve his full potential. He also is a glutton due to mental scars caused by finding Waylon Smithers Sr.'s corpse though it's mentioned that this was also from trying to fill the hole in his heart left by his mom. That and, according to Moe, also alcohol.
  • Friendly Enemy: With Selma due to Character Development. See Patty and Selma's section for more details. The more recent seasons of the show have Homer and Flanders butt heads a lot more often due to the show's Flanderization.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Not that often but it happens Depending on the Writer. Probably a plot point in "Homer the Great" when he complains about people who don't like him and the "No Homers Club". Sometimes he's shunned by his drinking buddies for little to no reason ("Fear of Flying", "Don't Fear the Roofer") which will be forgotten in the next episode. Also played with, while his "friends" have no problem hanging out with him most of the time, if Homer is in trouble, they would turn against him at the drop of a hat, like in "Homer Badman".
  • Genius Ditz: When properly motivated, Homer is incredibly intelligent. Across various episodes, he speaks several languages, is a Grammy-Award-winning songwriter and musician, a skilled poker player, a master marksman, and may know a bit of astrophysics. He's also juggled many, many careers with varying degrees of success, pulled off a scheme to trick Mr. Burns into making him CEO of the power plant, and formed a security company so successful and efficient that Quimby appointed him chief of police and fired Wiggum. The episode "HOMR" reveals he has a crayon stuck up his nose that limits his brain functionality, but when he has it temporarily removed his IQ jumps 50 points and he realizes his full potential (before having it put back at the end of the episode).
  • George Jetson Job Security:
    • Homer gets fired or quits his regular job on innumerable occasions, yet always ends up back working there.
    • Conversely he also has Ultimate Job Security, as Burns inexplicably keeps rehiring him despite his incompetence, laziness and frequent absences to focus on his latest job or hobby.
  • Goal in Life: A Running Gag in the early seasons was for Homer to say that doing something related to the plot of the episode was his lifelong dream (be a Monorail conductor/manage a beautiful country singer/be a blackjack dealer), Marge would then point out that Homer already had a lifelong dream, which he has already achieved (run out on a baseball field during a game/eat the world's biggest hoagie/appear on "The Gong Show").
  • Good Parents: His default status is an incompetent parent who nevertheless tries to do the right thing and dearly loves his children.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: One episode even has Bart make an internet cartoon about it. He later tries to bottle up his anger only for it to backfire.
  • Happily Married: While he and Marge have had plenty of marital problems, their deep love for each other is always able to overcome them. In fact, the sole consistent aspect of each future shown in the various Flash Forward episodes is that Homer and Marge will remain married and happy together till the end of their lives.
  • Has a Type: Blue hair, while he still loves Marge even after she shows her hair turned grey, he admits that he prefers when she dyes it.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • He's generally shown to be something of a Renaissance Man despite his low intellect. It's suggested that Lisa and Bart inherited their musical ability and Omniglot-level talent for learning languages respectively from him.
    • Despite being a typical working guy, Homer has displayed some unusually high-brow tastes (especially given Springfield is a cultural graveyard, and Homer generally avoids going anywhere artsy). In "Cape Feare", Homer shows not only a fondness for The Mikado, but he can sing along to the lyrics of "Three Little Girls". In a later episode, while imprisoned in Japan, he takes part in a presentation of The 47 Ronin, and complains about not getting to be a specific character.
  • High-School Sweethearts: He and Marge began dating in high school, and while they've had a handful of falling outs across their relationship, they always inevitably end up back together.
  • Hilariously Abusive Childhood: Homer did not have the happiest upbringing, to put it mildly.
    Grampa: (in flashback) Homer, you're dumb as a mule and twice as ugly. If a strange man offers you a ride, I say take it!
    Homer: (in the modern day) Lousy traumatic childhood.
  • Hot-Blooded: Especially when he's angry.
  • Hypocrite: An example, when he gets angry at his father in "Grampa vs. Sexual Inadequacy":
    Homer: He said I was an accident...he didn't want to have me.
    Marge: You didn't want to have Bart.
    Homer: I know, but you're never supposed to tell the child.
    Marge: You tell Bart all the time! You told him this morning.
    Homer: But when I do it, it's cute.
  • I Coulda Been a Contender!: Homer admired John F. Kennedy and dreamed of being president one day during his childhood (until his dad told him that the U.S. was specifically made so that way idiots like Homer couldn't be President). As a middle-aged man, he remarks the constant discouragement and contempt he received from his father turned him into a deadbeat.
  • Idiot Hero: One of Western Animation's most iconic examples. He's the main hero of the show and usually gets the rest of the cast out of crises, but is incredibly dimwitted.
  • Idiot Houdini: He at first showed reasonably poor judgment, but repeated encounters have gradually turned him into this trope. However this is also downplayed, because Homer is also one of the show's prime Butt Monkeys. He can get away with his stupidity, but only when the plot calls for it. Other times, fate punishes him dearly, such as in The Simpsons Movie, where, as a result of his actions getting the town stuck in a dome, the townspeople attack him with torches and pitchforks and his family leaves him, forcing him to make things right again.
  • Informed Deformity:
    • He is considered extremely fat and unfit. Actually he is only 239 pounds (which has been his weight ever since the water slide incident on "Brush of Greatness"), and tall to start (the season nine episode "Dumbbell Indemnity" had him at 6 feet even according to his mugshot photo).
    • Peter Griffin's got him beat. Even in the same universe, so do Comic Book Guy, Chief Wiggum (who actually had the nerve to call Homer fat), Mayor Quimby, and the Mexican Bumblebee Man (who is pretty much Mayor Quimby with tan skin and a Spanish accent), for starters.
    • He is also said to be diabetic (from when he drank too many Starbucks Frappuccinos during his stint as lead singer of the band, Sadgasm. Marge thought Homer was a heroin addict, but those needles he had were for insulin), but we never visibly see him suffer any diabetic symptoms (though the show does seem to imply that someone can become diabetic if they eat too much sugary foods, like when Carl became a diabetic from eating Grandma Plopwell's Sugar-Packed Pudding).
    • By all the information given on his body, to say nothing of all the injuries he's taken over the years, Homer should by all rights be a physical wreck. He's overweight, a drunkard, a former smoker, constantly exposed to a high amount of radiation, enough that his bloodstream is fluorescent, had several heart attacks, and is in some instances so out of shape that even running a few feet has him scarcely able to breath. He sure doesn't show it. He lampshades at one point that future Homer is gonna have a bad time when it starts catching up to him.
    • You can't really tell when he has his shirt on, but Homer's man-boobs must be a sight to behold. It has been referenced several times that he wears a sports bra ("Days of Wine and D'oh'ses", "Marge Gamer", and "Stop, or my Dog Will Shoot"), that Marge has been saving up for his breast reduction surgery ("Yokel Chords") and that after starving himself, he's down to a B-cup ("Hungry, Hungry Homer").
  • Informed Flaw: His IQ is 55 (then became 105 when he got the crayon out of his head), meaning that, much like Peter Griffin on Family Guy, he's legally classified as being intellectually disabled. As a child he was smart as a monkey, then became dumb as a chimp, either from drinking at a young age ("Lisa's Sax" showed that he and Barney drank when they were kids and caused a tricycle wreck), the crayon that got lodged in his head, or the Simpson gene (which makes all male Simpsons stupid, while their female counterparts stay smart, though that leaves the question of how Homer's half-brother, Herb, became rich and successful if he carries one of Abe's Y-chromosomes).
  • Inner Monologue: Homer converses with his brain often, turning monologues into full-on conversations. Interestingly enough, his brain has to act as the sensible one of the two.
    Brain: What the hell are you doing?
    Homer: Don't yell at me, brain! This happened on your watch! You have two jobs: thinking and bladder control!
    Brain: I'm doing the best with what I got. All you feed me is reality shows!
  • Innocently Insensitive:
    • Homer would never intentionally do anything to hurt Marge's feelings. Key word being "intentionally". He routinely does just because he doesn't realise that's what he's doing.
    • Also in the episode "Cape Fear" Homer rushes into Bart's room twice (after they were put into witness protection after Sideshow Bob threatened them with death), once with a butcher knife to cut him a brownie and the other time wearing a Hockey Mask and Chainsaw, to show off his hockey mask and chainsaw.
    Homer: BARTYOUWANNASEEMYNEWCHAINSAWANDHOCKEYMASK??
  • Insufferable Imbecile: Depending on the Writer, he's either this or a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. He's stupid, lazy, and prone to jokes at others' expense (just ask Flanders).
  • It's All About Me: Zigzagged. Homer endlessly causes chaos as a result of his selfishness, though he also has several unbelievable displays of self sacrifice and compassion. One episode had him walk out on a favor for Marge to buy a lottery ticket. When he actually wins however, his first instinct is to spend it all on his family. He even volunteered becoming a circus act instead of the octuplet in a situation where snakes are biting him.
  • I Taste Delicious: In "Treehouse of Horror IV", “XV”, and a plot point in “XXVIII”.
  • It's the Best Whatever, Ever!: His opinion on the Thanksgiving depicted in "Behind the Laughter" (held during a feud between the family). "I mean, emotionally, it was terrible, but the turkey was so moist!"
  • I Was Quite a Looker: He was slim, trim, clean shaven and had a full head of hair back in high school, all of which made him much more conventionally attractive than he is now.
  • Jack-of-All-Trades: He has done so many things over the years, there's no way he can't be a Jack of All Trades.
  • Jaded Washout: Homer has plenty to regret in life, but is usually just too light-hearted to let it get him down. He always admits at the end that he also has a lot to be proud of.
  • Jerkass: The Trope Namer! He was this in small doses during the early years (seasons 1 to 8)note ; became a major one in the Mike Scully years (season 9 to 12); in the Al Jean years, it depends on who's writing the episode (seasons 13 to present). He can also be quite nasty and abusive in the Tracey Ullman shorts.
  • Jerkass to One:
    • While Homer is overall not a very pleasant person, he straight up despises Ned Flanders, his good-hearted, religious neighbor, and outright fantasizes about Ned suffering in horrible ways.
    • Also to Bart. He's never physically or (at least voluntarily) mentally abusive to Lisa, Maggie, or Marge (in one episode he's Driven to Suicide at the idea of having been violent to and actually hurt Marge). With Bart, it's different, since he often strangles him as a Running Gag, is deliberately neglectful in general, and in several occasions it's mentioned that he has no problem telling Bart that he was an accident right to his face.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Homer has always had moments of being a horrible person and being extremely caring. In later seasons, he recreates his first date with Marge so she'll fall for him all over again, repeatedly turns down sex so he can read to Lisa, gets very involved in making Bart a good student and making Lisa popular, lives in a terribly cramped apartment by himself so his kids can go to a good school, and on and on. There's just a strong bias against the later seasons, whether people watch the episodes or not.
    • The movie shows this in spades and they went through numerous rewrites in order to portray Homer as sympathetic, but also make him such a selfish jackass that when Marge decides to leave him, he realizes to his horror that he has definitely gone too far. It ends up causing him to immediately snap out of his bravado and vow to save the town, despite the odds, because he needs to do it in order to win his family back. Homer even admits that he honestly can't live without them.
  • Karma Houdini: He rarely receives a punishment when he strangles Bart, even for the smallest things.
  • Kavorka Man: While the show goes to great lengths to explain why Marge loves him, and frequently shows their marital problems, several other women have instantly been attracted to him for no apparent reason. Of course, his actual level of attractiveness does tend to zigzag between "hunk gone to seed" and "shaved gorilla" from episode to episode.
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    L-Q 
  • Lack of Empathy: At his worst, he can be unsympathetic to others' well-being.
  • Large Ham: Don't try to deny it!
    "BERSERK IS RIIIIIIIGHT!!!"
    • Mmm, large ham.
  • Lazy Husband: Most of the time he's a couch-dweller, though he'll get his act together when needed.
  • Lethal Chef: In addition to not being very bright Homer can't cook for crap either. Marge remembers in one episode that the last time Homer tried to cook her anything the fish he served turned out to be still alive and the lobsters pinched him when he tried to cook them. And then of course there was the time he acted as Mr. Burns' assistant and not only smashed his fist into a microwave in an attempt to cook some food, instead of just opening the microwave door and putting the food inside, but he also somehow set a bowl of cereal on fire.
  • Lethally Stupid: He almost causes a catastrophe of nuclear proportions several times throughout the show. On one occasion, he manages to cause a nuclear meltdown in a simulator truck that didn't even have any nuclear material.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: Surprisingly, "Jaws Wired Shut" implies Homer is such to Marge. For all his faults and atrocities Marge has to put up with, they give her all the adrenaline she needs in life. When Homer actually made a legitimate effort to mellow out, Marge found the normal life dull and became restless and impulsive, almost killing herself in a wacky stunt of her own.
  • Loser Protagonist: To the very deepest degree. Bald, out of shape, constantly drinking at Moe's, works at a nuclear factory for Mr. Burns, a world-case dope (and when he briefly changed that, he so alienated all but one of his family and friends that he was forced to re-cause brain damage), incredibly clumsy, a bad luck magnet, lacks common sense, the Butt-Monkey, has to deal with Ned Flanders as his neighbor and the permanent effect of accidentally killing his wife, Maude, he's the subject of ridicule, especially with Marge's sisters, throttles his son Bart at the drop of a hat, and on top of all that, his father and mother have split up and he's suffered through it all his life. Even worse yet, when he reunites with his mother, she dies. The good news is, Marge loves him deeply and the two manage to resolve their arguments no matter what the case.
  • Lost Food Grievance: A particular Berserk Button among many, to say the least.
  • Made of Iron: One of Homer's more consistent traits is that he can take a beating. In "The Homer They Fall" Dr. Hibbert explains to Homer that he has an extra-thick layer of fluid around his brain, making him very resistant to head injuries. He also traveled with a freak show for a while because of his ability to survive being shot in the stomach by a cannon. And he more-or-less has survived working at a blatantly unsafe power plant, and no less than four heart attacks.
  • Mad Libs Catch Phrase: "Mmmm, [blank]." (usually a food item or an adjective for a food item)
    • "[blank], eh?".
  • Magnetic Hero: On far too many occasions to list, Homer's displayed a tendency to convince people to go along with his ideas, regardless of how dangerous or insane they might be.
  • Manchild: The most immature in the family, even more so than his son Bart.
  • Mangled Catch Phrase: When auditioning for Mr. Burns' movie: "Exactly. Heh, heh... D'oh!"
  • A Mistake Is Born: Just like Bart, Homer was an accident. Abraham took a revitalizing tonic which made drove his libido wild and he impregnated Mona as a result.
  • Mood-Swinger: In general Homer's mood can fluctuate from being sad and depressed, to angry, to joyfully happy at the drop of a hat with little to no provocation.
    • Parodied in one episode. Homer takes sleeping pills to sleep well through the night and Lisa reads off the side-effects, one which is Mood Swings. Cue Homer repeatedly saying "Mood Swings" in various moods.
    • Another example is when Homer ends up trapped in his car after driving into the edge of a cliff after Bart outruns him one too many times. Bart then reluctantly comes to his rescue. The following exchange occurs:
    Homer: Boy, push down on the bumper! Then I can back the car up and save myself!
    Bart: Hmm. If I save you, what are you gonna do to me?
    Homer: Shower you with love, because this experience has taught me just how precious you are.
    (Bart pushes down on the rear car bumper, Homer suddenly goes berserk)
    Homer: I'LL KILL YOU! I'LL KILL YOUR WHOLE FAMILY!!!
    (Bart lifts the car up and glowers at him)
    Homer: (calmly) Kidding! I'm kidding. We can do that, we have a special friendship.
    (Bart pushes the car down again and Homer immediately goes back into rage mode; he continues to slip back and forth between anger and tranquility as Bart simultaneously lifts and pushes the car)
    Homer: I'm gonna DOUBLE-KILL YOU! THEN I'M GONNA BURY YOU IN A SHALLOW GRAVE! THEN I'LL DIG YOU UP AND KILL YOU AGAIN—THAT'S THE BEAUTY OF A SHALLOW GRAVE! (car up) You sweet little angel, Oh, I'm (car down) GONNA RIP YOUR HEAD OFF, AND SPIT (car up) down your adorable little neck, because I (car down) WANNA SMASH YOUR LITTLE STUPID HEAD! (car up) Oh, but I love you, we'll go on a fishing trip. (car down) BUT FIRST I'M GONNA PUT YOU IN A SAWMILL, THEN PUNCH YOUR LITTLE FACE OUT! THAT'S WHAT I'M GONNA DO!
  • Mother F-Bomb: In "The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson", he mutters one while trying to gnaw the boot off of his car, a Throw It In! by Dan Castellaneta.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Tracey Ullman era.
  • Mr. Imagination: He has had several fantasies about solving his real life problems. This includes life under the sea, robbing the Kwik-E-Mart or living in a chocolate land. A lot of them are listed under trope If I Were a Rich Man.
  • Mr. Vice Guy: He is an alcoholic, temperamental, lazy, glutton. But his heart is in the right place, and he'll go to incredible lengths to protect his family.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: How did he lose his hair? Early episodes give several reasons;
    • Military experimentation he volunteered for just to get out of visiting Patty and Selma.
    • Ripping his hair out whenever he learnt Marge was pregnant.
    • Male Pattern Baldness.
    • Stress, caused by The Boy (when Bart's at Kamp Krusty, Homer regrows one hair. It promptly falls out when he sees Bart is the ringleader of the camp revolt).
  • Naked People Are Funny: Is naked in several scenes, and it's all played for laughs.
  • New Job Episode: A lot of episodes, especially in later seasons, revolve around Homer getting a new job. Lampshaded in "Poppa's Got A Brand New Badge":
    Homer: I've had a lot of jobs in my life: boxer, mascot, astronaut, baby proofer, imitation Krusty, truck driver, hippie, plow driver, food critic, conceptual artist, grease salesman, carny, mayor, grifter, bodyguard for the mayor, country western manager, garbage commissioner, mountain climber, farmer, inventor, Smithers, Poochie, celebrity assistant, power plant worker, fortune cookie writer, beer baron, Kwik-E-Mart clerk, homophobe, and missionary".note 
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: When he tries to do right it's usually gonna end up with him in pain or trouble, which he even lampshades when Fat Tony puts a hit on him for stopping his racket and the town leaves him alone to fend for himself.
  • No Indoor Voice: Hoo boy, is he a loudmouth.
    "HEAR YE, HEAR HE! THE HOMER BROADCASTING SYSTEM IS ON THE AIR! ALL HOLLERING, ALL THE TIME!"
    "I DON'T HAVE AN INSIDE VOICE!"
    "LOOK HOW LOUD I HAVE TO YELL!"
    "WILL YOU TWO SHUT UP?! PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO SLEEP!"
    "AND I SAY, A MONKEY CAN MOW OUR LAWN!"
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Subverted in an episode when Homer is playing poker with Lenny, Carl and Moe at Lenny's house. He draws four cards and curses his bad hand, before poorly trying to bluff the other players. Lenny and Carl fold, but Moe knows that Homer is bluffing and calls. Homer then reveals that he has a straight flush, and Moe becomes so frustrated at Homer beating him that he ends up choking on his own rage. It looks as though Homer cleverly tricked Moe into playing the hand, but the next morning he tells the family that he didn't even realize he was winning.
  • Obsessed with Food: A recurring theme is his appetite for junk food.
  • Omniglot: Has spoken German (he can sing "99 Luftballoons" in its original German language and knows German verb conjugations), Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, a little bit of French (describes "Trash Night" as "La Nuit des Poubelles"), and penguin.
    "I can understand food talk in any language."
  • Only in It for the Money: Pretty much the only reason Homer sticks around at the Power Plant at all (when he's actually there) is to earn enough money to provide for his family, and Maggie in particular.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: See Tranquil Fury. If the jovial, slow-witted Large Ham is staring you down with shrunken irises and speaking in a straight, menacing baritone, you've crossed a MAJOR line.
  • Opposites Attract: With Marge. Homer is fat, stupid, and behaves wildly whereas Marge is thin, smart, and has a very boring personality. Homer even wonders if Marge is his soulmate in El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer since they are such different people, but he realizes that she is in the end.
  • Papa Wolf:
    • Call him what you want, Homer still cares about his kids. Willing to become a helicopter parent for them, steal chocolate eggs for his baby daughter, return to his lousy job just to make his baby daughter's dreams come true, throw a pie at a guy mocking Lisa.
    • In regards to Lisa, he is such a Papa Wolf that he'll even defend her honor against Marge. A notable of this was in the episode "$pringfield (or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling)," when, thanks to Marge's gambling addiction, she forgot to help Lisa with her costume (Florida) for a school play despite promising to do so. Suffice to say, Homer was quite angered, to the extent that he drove over to the casino, located Marge, and then started shouting at her in nonsense before he shouts that he's angry because Marge broke a promise she made to her daughter.
    • Bart, whom he strangulates regularly as a running gag, however, is comparatively shit outta luck. Even then, Homer spearheaded an effort to dig Bart out after Bart fell down a well, took some nasty physical punishment while disguised to be a battle-robot that Bart controlled, and forced crooked T-shirt manufacturer Goose Gladwell, who cheated Bart out of the ideas he'd come up with for T-shirt slogans, by threatening Goose with a portable nuclear fission reactor that he made himself for Lisa's science fair project until Goose paid Bart the money he deserved.
    • It should be noted however, that while he'll strangle Bart, who more than likely has it coming, if somebody else so much as even looks at Bart the wrong way, then they're gonna suffer his wrath.
    Homer: Why don't you [jailed delinquents] pick on someone bigger than you who has this? (draws a gun)
  • Parental Favoritism: Homer makes it very clear his favorite child is Lisa. He thinks of Bart as the bane of existence and often forgets Maggie even exists.
  • Parental Neglect: Homer has such little interactions with Maggie that he forgets that she exists. The rare occasions the show takes to focus on their relationship, subsequently, end up as heartwarming by contrast.
  • Parents as People: Homer often has realizations that he is a terrible parent, but is usually too bogged down by his own stupidity to do anything about it.
  • Parting Words Regret: In the episode "Mona Leaves-a", Homer blows up on his mother Mona, chewing her out for never being there for him and constantly putting her various agendas ahead of her own son. Later that night, Homer calms down and makes her an apology card... only to find that she died sometime during the night.
  • Perma-Stubble:
    • His beard muzzle/mouth. In the early episodes, it always grew back three seconds after he shaved it off. In his teen years, he didn't have it, and it's not really explained at what age Homer got it (it can be implied that it was around the time he got out of high school and was still dating Marge).
    • His stubble is so permanent that when he grows a goatee he doesn't just shave one from his existing facial hair but grows one through it.
    • The gag about his stubble growing back was revisited in Season 27's "Teenage Mutant Milk-caused Hurdles", where he learns that he's been using his razor with the plastic case still over the blade. He gives himself a proper shave and discovers that he has a manly chin underneath. He tries to show this to Marge (who was helping Lisa with her acne problem), only for the stubble to grow back just as Marge turns to look.
  • Phrase Catcher: Overlaps with Mad Libs Catch Phrase in this exchange between Mr. Burns and Smithers.
    "Smithers! who is that [insult involving Antiquated Linguistics]?
    "That's Homer Simpson, sir, one of your [condescending noun] from Sector 7-G."
    "Simpson, eh?"
  • Ping-Pong Naïveté: His stupidity is seasoned with odd Author Filibuster moments of uncharacteristic eloquence.
  • The Protagonist: While the members of the Simpson family all get their time in the spotlight, Homer will pretty much always be involved in the main plot of an episode regardless of whether or not he's the focus of it. He's also generally front and center in promotional art and advertisements. He was not always this, however, as earlier seasons tended to focus primarily on Bart.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Again, Depending on the Writer.

    R-Z 
  • Reality Ensues: He has suffered multiple heart attacks and had to have a triple bypass, the inevitable result of his extremely unhealthy lifestyle.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: He drives a pink Sedan, and played tea party with Lisa to cheer her up. This didn't work out so well when Homer was forced to wear a pink T-shirt to work (which was the result of Bart putting his lucky red cap in the wash with the white clothes) and (thanks to that and letting Bart fill out his psychiatric evaluation form) ended up in a mental hospital.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: While he is sometimes portrayed as a crack shot, other times (well, mostly) he'll fit this trope instead, which is why Marge has a tendency to confiscate and bury them immediately. An example is when he buys a handgun and uses it for the most menial of tasks, such as getting something down from a cupboard instead of simply fetching a chair; later in the same episode, he freaks out the NRA of all people as they say he's completely nuts. On one occasion, he fired a handgun at his chest while he was wearing body armour, which left him going between grunts of pain and surprised giggles; everybody else is cowering behind cover and most of the glass cases have been shattered.
  • Renamed the Same: Learning his true middle name is "Jay", instead of just "J".
  • Running Gag: In the early seasons Homer would often mention that some event in the episode is his lifelong dream and Marge would remind him that his lifelong dream had already been fulfilled and it'd be different every time with an example of what it was.
  • Sad Clown: He had a rough childhood, is seen as a loser by friends and family alike and is generally unhappy with his life. This is either ignored or played for laughs, but it is occasionally used for drama.
    • Homer's attempted suicide at least three times in the show's run, and once described Bart as "like me, before the weight of the world crushed my spirit."
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: A high-pitched, grating "AHHH!".
  • Selective Enforcement: In the Tracey Ullman shorts and early series episodes, Lisa was just as bratty and dysfunctional as Bart, though Homer tended to only target Bart for discipline. This was excused by the creative team, they were apparently a lot more uneasy when offered gags with Homer strangling and comically abusing Lisa compared to Bart.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Manly Man to Ned Flanders' Sensitive Guy.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: With his brother Herb.
  • Simple-Minded Wisdom: Within the show's long run, Homer, within all his moronic behaviour, has displayed rather palpable showings of obscure intellect or clarity. He can even give fatherly advice to Bart every now and then.
  • Simpleton Voice: He has a funny goofy voice. Word of God has it Dan Castellaneta tried to mimic Walter Matthau's voice in the first season, but he couldn't get the inflection quite right, so he modified it from the second season onward.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Depending on the Writer. Sometimes he only has eyes for Marge and doesn't realise when beautiful women are hitting on him. Other times he has shown attraction to other women (or even men on occasion).
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: The show's early seasons had a balanced focus between the main members of the family, but Homer eventually took over as the main focus due to his wild antics.
  • Stone Wall: He isn't physically fit, and his fighting ability fluctuates depending on the episode, but his damage resistance is always shown to be extremely high.
  • Stout Strength: He isn't physically fit and he hates working out (he doesn't even know how to pronounce the word "gym"), but he's one of the physically strongest characters.
  • Strong as They Need to Be: A non-super variant; Homer's athletic ability depends on what the writers need for that episode. In "The Homer They Fall," when Homer is training to be a boxer, one of his punches can't even kill a fly that lands on Moe's training glove, and he's often shown out of breath after the smallest amount of physical activity. However, Acrofatic and Stout Strength are also on his trope list.
  • Super Serum: Beer has this effect on him in at least one episode.
  • Sweet Tooth: He sure loves donuts.
  • Taking Advantage of Generosity: Especially when borrowing stuff from Flanders.
  • This Loser Is You: A textbook example.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Nine times out of ten, the vast majority of the numerous incidents of physical harm that Homer suffers, it was brought upon himself due to his own carelessness and ignorance. It's amazing that he hasn't ended up in an early grave yet (aside from some moments in the non-canon Treehouse of Horror where that does happen).
  • Took a Level in Dumbass: Homer started out stupid, but not really more so than anyone else. Word of God admitted that he was made stupider with each passing season to try to outdo what came before and remain fresh. (This trend ended at the start of Season 13, where the writers made a conscious effort to make him smarter.)
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: The Mike Scully era turned up his stupidity and callousness Up to Eleven. This was toned down when Al Jean took over.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: In season 1 he was angry and grumpy all the time but becomes sweeter after season 2, though his angry personality still sometimes surfaces up (usually whenever Bart makes him mad). When the show's Flanderization kicked in, he Took a Level in Jerkass, especially in the Mike Scully years. Now, Depending on the Writer, he occasionally snaps back to being nice, then back to a jerk, and so on.
  • Toxic Friend Influence: A literal example as he was the one who introduced his friend Barney Gumble to beer right before the SAT exam and made him into an alcoholic.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Early episodes, it was pork chops and doughnuts. Later episodes, it was just doughnuts (though recent episodes like "Left Behind" and "Throw Grampa From the Dane" have been taking pork chops back into account), though Homer's appetite doesn't discriminate (see Extreme Omnivore).
  • Tranquil Fury: On very rare occasions, Homer's normally Large Ham, Played for Laughs Hair-Trigger Temper will be replaced with this and when it happens, you better do like Bart and Lisa did in "Who Shot Mr. Burns" and run like hell.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Ugly Guy to Marge's Hot Wife, though Marge's attractiveness has been played up over time. However, Homer has usually been shown to have been far more attractive in his younger years when he first started dating Marge, downplaying this slightly.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Homer is selfish, short-tempered and can sometimes be abusive towards his wife and children, and his reckless stupidity causes many of the problems on the show.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Homer has done this a few times. In his defense, sometimes the doom came from things nobody could have reasonably foreseen.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: While he can definitely be a good guy nowadays, he was an absolute sweetheart as a kid before getting beaten down by his abusive father.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Flanders. Homer may openly claim he hates Flanders, the amount of times that Homer has helped him out of the fire and vice-versa, makes it clear they really are the only people in Springfield who can count on the other for support.
  • Vocal Evolution: Started off with a much deeper, Walter Matthau-esque voice, which got higher and faster towards season 3, and it's essentially stayed that way since.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: While he definitely neglects Grandpa, it's implied that it's due to his own neglect as a child. Occasionally Homer demonstrates he really does want his father's approval and on one occasion when Grandpa angrily called him "an accident", Homer kicked him out of the car, left him in the middle of nowhere, then completely stopped speaking to him for several weeks.
  • We Used to Be Friends: With Peter Griffin. During the Griffins' visit to Springfield, Homer and Peter became best friends, only to end up falling out when Duff successfully sued Pawtucket Patriot Ale for intellectual theft and patent infringement. In the end, they admit they respect each other, yet agree to stay away from each other.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: When Homer takes up a new career or hobby, there's often no reference to how it affects his regular job at the power plant. Carl lampshades it when Homer dashes off to begin his scheme to invest his family's life savings on motion-capture technology:
    Carl: So does he still work here or what?
  • What Have I Done: In "When Flanders Failed" Homer wishes for Flanders' new Leftorium store to go bust. When he gets his wish, he is guilt-ridden and sets about trying to save the store.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: It's been shown multiple times that Homer has arachnophobia, which is a fear of arachnids (mainly spiders).
    • This is best shown in the episode "Home Sweet Homediddly-Dum-Doodily" where he panics when a spider appears next to his keys.
    • Another example would be in "Treehouse of Horror XXII" where he panics when he realizes that the spider Halloween decoration was a real black widow spider and panics again when a second spider appears later in the episode.
    • The final example would be in "Mobile Homer" where he's unsettled by the sight of a spider when he's asked by Marge to kill the spiders in the garage and gets into a frenzy when more spiders attack him.
  • With Friends Like These...: He can be disloyal to his friends at times.
  • Would Hurt a Child: He has no problem throttling Bart, even when he was a baby. He also sucker punched a baby dolphin, albeit for biting Lisa after she took a can ring off its nose.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: In the episode "Homer Goes to College," Homer is convinced his college experience will be exactly like the party atmosphere college is often depicted as in movies, not realizing he's in a satire that thoroughly subverts the trope.
  • Younger Than They Look: In the earlier seasons, he was only 34 years old, despite easily passing for a man in his late forties at least. Later seasons aged him up to 40 because the writers couldn't imagine being older than Homer. An amnesiac Marge actually believed he was her uncle given how damaged he looks.
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