Sometimes, characters on The Simpsons break the fourth wall, or acknowledge the existence either of their status as fictional or of the audience watching them. These are the times it has happened.

Times this has happened

Season 1

  • In Bart the General, before the end credits, Bart sits on a table in a library and talks directly to the viewers about the seriousness of war.

Season 2

Season 3

Season 4

Season 5

Season 6

  • In Another Simpsons Clip Show, Marge says they watch the same shows all the time, while Lisa says that the Itchy & Scratchy cartoons are just pasted together from pieces of old episodes (and pointing out that Ren and Stimpy do it all the time). This comment is a sly joke about the construction of this episode; the blackboard and couch gags are taken from other episodes, there are clips from past episodes, the scene it self is from Krusty Gets Busted, and the interstitials are actually clips from past episodes that feature the family members talking in the kitchen. These three aspects support the idea of this episode being a clip show to the extreme.

Season 7

  • In The Day the Violence Died, Roger Meyers, Jr. says that Chief Wiggum is a rip-off of Edward G. Robinson.
  • At the end of Attack of the 50-foot Eyesores, Kent Brockman warns people watching the news about the statues coming to life in their town, "Lock your doors, bar your windows, because the next advertisement you see could destroy your house and eat your family." Homer then appears to say "We'll be right back" to start a commercial. Later in Homer³, Homer states "I feel like I'm wasting a fourtane standing here!"
  • In 22 Short Films About Springfield, Lisa says that she finally looks like a real person.
  • Also in 22 Short Films About Springfield, Professor Frink begs the audience to listen to his story, for which he has even composed theme music. He is disappointed when the credits start playing.

Season 8

  • In Lisa's Date with Density, Lisa writes "I will not be a snickerpuss" on the chalkboard. She then questions how Bart writes on the chalkboard in the opening.

Season 9

  • In Bart Star, Joe Namath talks to the viewers about vapor lock.
  • In All Singing, All Dancing, At one point, towards the end of the episode, the Simpsons family sings that "it really does blow when a long-running series does a cheesy clip show", there is a banner saying "Simpsons Clip Show" and the episode's production code which is (5F24)

Season 10

  • In Sunday, Cruddy Sunday, John Madden and Pat Summerall have a "post-episode analysis", where they come to a conclusion that the episode cheated "the loyal fans who put up with so much nonsense from this franchise".
  • At the end of Marge Simpson in: "Screaming Yellow Honkers", Bart, Lisa, and Wiggum talk about how good NBC is and Marge tells the audiance that there is only one why to find out if they have something good on. On later airings, the credits show Homer being held at gunpoint telling the audience to watch Fox only to be shot when complementing CBS.

Season 11

Season 12

Season 13

  • At the end of Sweets and Sour Marge, Lenny Leonard looks at the camera and says to the viewers that he found his loose teeth (which he thought they were pearls at first), and that he can still make a necklace out of them.
  • In Brawl in the Family, Lisa nearly breaks the fourth wall in this episode when she says "Could this be the end of our series..." but finishes saying "....of events."

Season 14

Season 15

  • In Today, I Am a Clown Lisa breaks the fourth wall by reading the 'Two Dozen and One Greyhounds' page of The Simpsons: A Complete Guide to Our Favorite Family to discover that they got Santa's Little Helper neutered.
  • In The Way We Weren't, after Marge prank calls Moe, Moe breaks the fourth wall and addresses the camera, saying "And that's the origin of that!" 

Season 16

  • When Homers insults the quality of Korean Animation in Fat Man and Little Boy, his "five o'clock shadow" part of his face is drawn a foot away from the rest of his head.

Season 17

Season 18

  • In Yokel Chords, Bart says he dreamt his whole family were cartoon characters and their success had led to Fox News. This is what the Simpsons are, which breaks the fourth wall. Or this could be a reference to the episode Behind the Laughter.
  • At the end of You Kent Always Say What You Want, after he gets voiced over by Maurice LaMarche's ads for Fox when he tries to tell Lisa something horrible Kent Brockman mentioned about the Fox Network, and after he gets cut off by the 20th Century Fox Television logo and music when he says, "The truth is-", Homer tries to talk to the audience about it one more time by whispering, "Ok. What I was going to say was-", before being comically interrupted by the Gracie Films logo.

Season 19

  • In Treehouse of Horror XVIII, Marge talks to the viewers about the episode during the opening sequence.
  • In All About Lisa, Sideshow Mel's narration breaks the fourth wall just before the advertisement break, saying, "Lisa didn't know it yet, but she had just dipped her first toe, into the business of show! And it is a business, as you will find out in three...two...one..."

Season 20

  • In Homer and Lisa Exchange Cross Words, while solving crossword puzzles, Lisa thinks of B.A.R.T. and describes it as a San Francisco people mover. Bart then looks at the camera and says, "Speaking of San Francisco people movers..." before the scene cuts to Homer and Julio dancing at the hardcore gay club.
  • In Take My Life, Please, Bart writes 'HDTV is worth every cent', a reference to the episode being the first in production order to come in 16:9 high definition format.
  • In Father Knows Worst, Homer tells the viewers that he's a "great dad to both his kids".

Season 21

Season 22

  • In the "Master and Cadaver" segment of Treehouse of Horror XXI, after Homer kills Roger, he says "They should've called this one 'Recipe for Disaster'", confusing Marge.
  • In The Ned-liest Catch, during the cliffhanger ending, Homer and Marge remind the viewer to join TheSimpsons.com and vote on whether or not Ned Flanders and Edna Krabappel should stay together (In later airings of the episode, this scene was extended into the end credits).
  • In A Midsummer's Nice Dream, Bart breaks the fourth wall that the viewers can watch this episode tomorrow (March 14, 2011) at hulu.com.

Season 23

  • In The Falcon and the D'ohman, Comic Book Guy, during the cold open, tells the viewers that the result of Nedna will be revealed in the episode. Also, later in the episode, when Ned and Edna are in bed together while Wayne Slater (who was having a nightmare) disturbed a few couples while sleeping, Edna winks at the camera, which also reveals the result of Nedna: "Pro Nedna".
  • In Ned 'N Edna's Blend Agenda, There are several moments during the episode when the fourth wall is broken. Firstly when Homer replies to Marge by saying "Let's put it to a vote America". This is in reference to the end of "The Ned-liest Catch" where the country voted whether Ned and Edna should stay together. The fourth wall is broken again when Moe says the if a three-act story is good enough for Aristotle, then its good enough for the Simpsons.
  • In Moe Goes from Rags to Riches, Moe's bar rag tells the viewers his life story throughout the episode.
  • In The Book Job, This episode technically breaks the fourth wall, as one of the titles says "The Commercials" moments before the commercial break.
  • In Holidays of Future Passed Bart says "I have acted like a 10 year old for the last 30 years".

Season 24

  • In Moonshine River, before the end credits, the Simpsons tell the viewers about making their own couch gag.
  • In Hardly Kirk-ing, while Homer is strangling Bart at the end of the episode, he says that Bart's comment about not wanting to look like him is "not a heart-warming scene to end [the episode] on".
  • In A Test Before Trying, When Homer drops the rest of his parking meter change into the wishing well, he breaks the fourth wall by telling Marge "now lets get back on topic" meaning he is aware of the two topics of the episode and the scene changes to Springfield Elementary School where Bart's test is taking place. This could also be coincidental because Homer Simpson could have found out what is happening with Bart Simpson off-screen and when he said lets get back on topic that could have just meant that Homer was just going to talk to Marge Simpson about what's going on with Bart and after he said that the writers change the scene because it was an appropriate time to change the scene.

Season 25

Season 26

  • In the couch gag of Mathlete's Feat, Bart breaks the fourth wall when he demands "No more guest animators man!"

Season 27

  • In Puffless, When Marge tells Homer that Patty will be sleeping on the couch, Homer breaks the fourth wall by saying "But that's where we do our couch gags!" and we then cut to the couch gag seen in the episode. Also, Maggie's plan's subtitles also breaks the fourth wall: After securing the perimeter, the ground troops will advance and reinforce flanks, as the aerial units will soften their defenses. Then we shall advance in a pincer moment to infiltrate the compound and liberate our friend. If you've read all of this, congratulations, you're a genius!
  • In Treehouse of Horror XXVI, Sideshow Bob breaks the fourth wall by saying that he's spent 24 years (actually 22 years) trying to kill a ten-year-old child. Later, Homer, confusing cartoon animation for revival animation, Homer says the animation for the segment is good.
  • In Barthood, Homer breaks the fourth wall at the end of the episode saying "Oh, is that what this was?"
  • During The Marge-ian Chronicles, Homer gives the camera a thumbs up after giving Marge a reason to make a G-rated comedy club.
  • In Simprovised, Homer answered questions from viewers during the live broadcast, and the questions were different in both the East Coast/Central version and the West Coast/Mountain version.

Season 28

  • In The Caper Chase, Robert McKee breaks the fourth wall by talking to Homer about the time cut that happened after the introduction to the clones.
  • In Moho House, Homer's flip book ends with a Gracie Films logo. Also in "Stogie's Song", Stogie sang the line "that's the ending of the show, except for the tag."
  • In Monty Burns' Fleeing Circus's couch gag, Clancy Wiggum breaks the fourth wall, when he is knocked over by the camera.
  • In the Moefinger segment of Treehouse of Horror XXVII, Moe says that the secret entrance was possible when Halloween show money.
  • In Dogtown, Mayor Quimby breaks the fourth wall by joking about what state Springfield is in; after Quimby finds out about their current position on dogs, he mentions that Springfield will be known as the dog-loving capital of the world from that point forth, and that it will put Springfield on the map. His assistant asks why they are not on the map, but instead of revealing the answer, Quimby says that he doesn't understand, because he made twenty calls to Rand McNally, and the company doesn't even realize what state Springfield is in as well.

Season 29

  • In Treehouse Of Horror XXVIII Lisa says "Whoa, for a Halloween show middle segment, this is amazing!"
  • In Singin' in the Lane, Lenny breaks the fourth wall by saying "A lot of music in this episode" while hearing "The Boys Are Back In Town."
  • In an epilogue of "Lisa Gets the Blues", Homer tells the kids that with the next coming episode, the series will have exceeded Gunsmoke in terms of episode length, but Bart dampers the mood, by suggesting they factor in the episodes they made on radio.
  • In the episode Haw-Haw Land, there is a box labeled "Couch Gag Props Used" in the garage.
  • In No Good Read Goes Unpunished, Lisa and Marge break the fourth wall to pander to some opposing protesters in recently heightened controversy over the show's Indian character, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, popularized by the Hari Kondabolu documentary film, "The Problem with Apu".

Season 30

  • In E My Sports while the Simpsons family are driving, they pass a building called Simpsons Animation Studio and Casino.
  • In D'oh Canada, following the musical number in the beginning, a blanket of snow falls over Buffalo, New York after the family drives into the city. Homer steps into view from offscreen declaring to the audience, "Benedict Arnold fought here, baby!"

Season 31

Season 32

  • In Treehouse of Horror XXXI, Homer selects his candidate (who isn’t shown), he looks at the screen and says “Who you gonna make fun of now, late night comics?” then laughs. A few seconds later, it was revealed that it was just Homer’s dream.
  • In the 7 Beer Itch, Homer messes with the call's split screen.

The Simpsons Movie

  • At the opening, Homer points to the viewers during his speech.
  • During the end credits, Tom Hanks appears and asks the audience to leave him be if they see him in real life.
  • While the end credits roll, the Simpson family are watching them, revealing that the Simpsons were watching the entire movie, including the pre-movie Itchy & Scratchy cartoon, in the same theater in the same seats.
  • During the end credits, before the family leaves the theater, Maggie says "Sequel", which some viewers think is a sign that there will be a sequel to the movie. In reality, an insider source confirmed a sequel.

Music videos

  • In "Do the Bartman", Bart tells the viewers about his story of how he invented the Bartman dance moves in the style of rapping.
  • In "Deep, Deep Trouble", Bart tells the viewers about his story on how he got in prison after getting in trouble by Homer and Marge.
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