After 26 seasons of blissful TV marriage, Marge and Homer Simpson will be splitting up.
Al Jean, the show’s executive producer, said in an interview with Variety that Homer and Marge will separate during the 27th season of “The Simpsons.”
“In the premiere, it’s discovered after all the years Homer has narcolepsy and it’s an incredible strain on the marriage,” he said. “Homer and Marge legally separate, and Homer falls in love with his pharmacist, who’s voiced by Lena Dunham.”
This has come as a shock to some fans simply because the famous television couple has been together for so long.
“It is ridiculous. No animated married couple ... should have any problems,” Margarita Noriega wrote for Vox. “They aren't part of a reality television show. This is a show about family, and I need emotional stability in my animated series.”
For those still reeling from this news, it’s important to note that Homer and Marge have split before, Christine Mai-Duc and Julie Westfall reported for the LA Times. In season 8, Homer divorced Marge because he felt she could do better, but they remarried by the end of the episode.
It was also revealed 12 seasons later that the person that officiated their marriage had not been licensed to do so, the LA Times wrote. So, technically, they were never even married, and the show continued on as though nothing was different.
Television often reflects the stereotypical family because it makes shows more relatable, which explains the unbreakable Cleaver family from the ‘50s TV show “Leave It To Beaver.”
But divorce has become more common in television shows in recent years. It seems that every major sitcom has at least one minor character with a struggling marriage or that has already been through divorce, as is the case with Louis C.K. from “Louie” and Don Draper from “Mad Men.”
Yet the divorce rate is actually falling in America, despite the popular misconception that half of marriages end in divorce — and the numbers are looking good.
The divorce rate hit its peak in the ‘70s and ‘80s and has been falling ever since, Claire Cain Miller reported for The New York Times.
If the divorce rate continues to fall at its current rate, two-thirds of marriages will not end in divorce, Miller wrote.
“There are many reasons for the drop in divorce, including later marriages, birth control and the rise of so-called love marriages,” Miller reported. “These same forces have helped reduce the divorce rate in parts of Europe, too. Much of the trend has to do with changing gender roles — whom the feminist revolution helped and whom it left behind.”
And for fans of “The Simpsons,” there is always hope that Marge and Homer will get back together. They will just have to wait until the season premiere in September of 2016 to find out.
So don’t worry. Love may not be completely dead yet, as Mashable worried.
Shelby Slade is a writer for Deseret News National. Email: email@example.com, Twitter: shelbygslade.