Friday, December 28, 2007

Gendered Simpsons?

Sweet, thanks to Mr Santa Claus, I am now the proud owner of two more DVD boxsets of my favorite TV show, The Simpsons. The fact that this show, probably along with The X-files and Seinfeld, is on my all time top 3 list on TV shows came up at a party a couple of weeks ago and to my big surprise, people were astonished to hear this. Apparently, the typical Simpsons fan is considered to be male. To be honest, this is nothing I've thought about, and spontaneously, I'm a bit doubtful as to if this is true. There's no doubt plenty of women enjoying watching the bad manners of Homer, the many pranks à la Bart and admiring the sharp wit of young Lisa, right? Well, perhaps therefore, this gender "prejudice" intrigued me to such an extent that I did a bit of ad hoc-research. It turns out, not many women at the party watch the show, whereas many men do, and when asked about it, most felt that the show appeals to men in the 20s-30s. And now, when I google it to see if there's audience research or sociological studies available to shed some light on the matter, I find nothing. I did find that gamers seem to include the show in their TV consumption, but I still don't know whether there are more men than women in the fan club.

Interestingly, while browsing for information on the demographics of the audience, I found out via Wikipedia that The Simpsons turned out to be a viewer success in Japan, only after the marketing spotlight was put on Lisa. I'm having a Japanese friend of a friend coming over to stay with us tomorrow, I'll have to ask her about the audience of the best animated series there is in her country.

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