Breaking!!! The Simpsons Predict Ebola Virus.
1. The Simpsons predicted Ebola outbreak 17 years back in 1997.
2. 'The Simpsons' predicted the US Ebola virus in an episode that originally aired back in 1997.
Hoax or Fact:
A story that went viral online stated that the famous American TV show The Simpsons predicted the current Ebola pandemic in an episode that originally aired back in 1997. Let us analyze if it is a fact or not.
The story originated from an early Oct. 2014 video (shown in this article) uploaded by a YouTube user 'Thecontroversy7', wherein the online conspiracy chaser showed a 1997 snippet from The Simpsons' “Lisa’s Sax” episode in season nine, as part of a discussion to claim they predicted the current Ebola outbreak in Western Africa. In the episode, Marge tries to convince her sick son Bart to get out of bed. She suggests him to read a book and shows a book titled 'Curious George and the Ebola Virus'. When Bart does not show interest, Marge suggests him to color something, to which Bart replies that he did that already. Then the camera turns to show a grim picture of the Sun crying over the dead bodies all around.
Surprisingly, some people actually believed in the story and that's how it went viral. Some conspiracy theorists have been pointing to the aforementioned episode wondering why The Simpsons was aware of Ebola 17 years ago. However, as a matter of fact, Ebola is not new; it has been around since at least 1976 when it was first documented in Sudan and Zaire. As mentioned in American CDC website cdc.gov, the deadly Ebola Virus Disease has been resurfacing in few countries since then; even around 1997 when The Simpsons episode in question was created.
The Simpsons episode merely shows a book titled ‘Curious George and the Ebola Virus’ that displays the eponymous monkey in a sick bed. Moreover, the episode did not specifically say there will be an Ebola crisis or outbreak in Western Africa in 2014. So clearly, it is not a prediction as such - just some pop culture humor instead!