I was listening to a compilation of the beloved R&B group the Coasters, and wondered what draws me to these songs. Then the thought hit me: The Coasters’ hits are basically templates for classic episodes of The Simpsons, decades before that show existed. Don’t believe my theory? Behold the startling evidence below:
SPOOKY PARALLEL #1
COASTERS SONG: “Sorry But I’m Gonna Have To Pass”
A man rebuffs a woman’s advances after considering the virtues of his true love.
SIMPSONS EPISODE: “Colonel Homer”
Homer rebuffs Lurleen Lumpkin’s advances after considering the virtues of Marge, his true love.
SPOOKY PARALLEL #2
COASTERS SONG: “Stewball”
A guy, down on his luck, bets on the racehorse Stewball in a desperate attempt for cash.
SIMPSONS EPISODES: “Krusty Gets Kancelled”
Krusty the Clown, down on his luck, bets on a racehorse in a desperate attempt for cash.
“Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire”
Homer and Bart, down on their luck, bet on greyhound Santa’s Little Helper in a desperate attempt for cash.
SPOOKY PARALLEL #3
COASTERS SONG: “Wake Me, Shake Me”
A guy barely drags himself to work, because his detested boss slave-drives him in a dead-end job.
SIMPSONS EPISODE: “Homer The Smithers”
Homer barely drags himself to work at the nuclear plant, because Mr. Burns slave-drives him in his new personal assistant job.
SPOOKY PARALLEL #4
COASTERS SONG: “What Is The Secret of Your Success?”
A guy expresses envy towards an acquaintance.
SIMPSONS EPISODE: “Mr. Plow”
Barney expresses envy towards newly-successful Homer.
SPOOKY PARALLEL #5
COASTERS SONG: “Charlie Brown”
Prankster Charlie Brown wreaks havoc.
SIMPSONS EPISODES: “The Crepes of Wrath,” “Bart The Lover,” “Bart The Genius,” “Bart Sells His Soul”…how much time do we have, exactly?
Prankster Bart Simpson wreaks havoc.
The Coasters also have songs about bad detectives (gasp, Wiggum!), nagging, voracious hunger, and watching TV! The frightening similarities make me wonder what a Leiber/Stoller Simpsons script would have been like.
Still unconvinced? I leave you with
THE SPOOKIEST PARALLEL OF ALL
VIRTUALLY EVERY COASTERS HIT: King Curtis plays the saxophone.
VIRTUALLY EVERY SIMPSONS OPENING CREDITS SEQUENCE: Lisa Simpson plays the saxophone!
I rest my case.