- “Haw Haw!”
- ―Nelson's popular catchphrase
Nelson Muntz is the main bully in The Simpsons. He is the leader
of the bullies at Springfield Elementary School (despite being the youngest and shortest), although usually seen and acting independently. He is Bart Simpson's former arch-enemy (later one of his best friends). He is a 4th grader.
Nelson was first shown as a bully and nemesis of Bart. Over the years, he has terrorized most male kids in Springfield, and was even seen bullying teenagers (Jimbo Jones, Squeaky-voiced Teen). Nelson has a manner of showing up in awkward situations of surprise or misfortune and regularly pinpoint it by laughing at the concerned people ("Ha-haw!" became his catchphrase). When cornered about the awkwardness of those situations, Nelson usually gives a very reasoned explanation as to why he acted the way he did, sometimes even pseudo-scientifically proving it ("See, epidermis means your hair, so technically it's true. That's what makes it so funny.")Nelson currently studies in the 4th grade, but was already a student when Bart came to school, which suggests that he may have repeated a couple years. As such, he mainly remains sceptical to Krabappel's remarks and laughs at nerds present in his class as he well knows all the correct answers to teacher's every question. School has gotten in a way to Nelson in that he learned to deliberate things about some matters, such as history, for example, while ignoring most of the rest of the curriculum. Nelson represented Japan at the Model UN club  and serves as a quarterback for the Pee-Wee school's football team (on one occasion he even catches his own pass and plows through the opposing team with extreme ease), which he almost single-handedly carried over the rivals at some point. He has a surprising facility for planning, as he tells Marge when she says she wants to take down Mixed Fighting that she'll need parents, sympathetic school officials and clergymen, a place to meet, snacks, staplers and a phonetree; (which he considers to be invaluable in regards to organizing a protest) to even have a chance at taking down an entire sport. He turns out to be a fan of many unexpected things, such as Andy Williams and Snow White. He is also an expert in the proper preparation of Huckleberries and eats tadpoles for brunch and lunch. Another time he was apparently a master of disguise, fooling even Bart and Ned Flanders. Finally he was also depicted as having master answer sheets to various tests and assignments at school. He has an "office" located in a toilet stall where he has the answer sheets hidden in the toilet cistern. In Loan-a Lisa, he starts his own business using the fifty dollars Lisa donated to him. In a video link, Nelson says that he used some of the money to treat his mother the way she deserves. In the same episode, he is very caring towards Lisa at the end as he makes up an excuse to hold her hand as they are rollerblading.
Nelson's choice of social ethics seems to sprout from edgy reasons and rules understood only to himself: when Bart (truthfully) claimed to have been Krusty the Clown's assistant, Nelson punched him in the stomach, saying: "That's for taking credit for other people's work!". Nelson also hit Bart after the latter accidentally wrecked Adolf Hitler's vehicle at a carnival. ("You wrecked Hitler's car! What did he ever do to you?!") Bart also got beaten for "Wasting teacher's valuable time!", after constantly raising his hand with the wrong answer to answer a question Mrs. Krabappel asked, and received pain for "Besmirching an innocent girl's name!" after trying to flaunt his relationship with Jessica Lovejoy to the other kids. Milhouse claims to care about the environment to impress Lisa. Nelson stands over him with a fist raised and demanded he "[s]ay global warming is a myth!" Milhouse does so, and Nelson punches him anyway, stating "That's for selling out your beliefs!"  Lisa went out with Nelson for the same reasons, only to be persuaded that he will never change. At some point Nelson teamed up with Martin and attempted to put him straight, therefore not all of his actions are mere intimidation.
After Season 10, Nelson became portrayed rather as an insecure teenager who is ashamed of his ways and beats kids out of fear that they will find out some piece of his biography he cherishes most, rather than out of fun and boredom. Since his father left the family at that time and Nelson remained with his mother, who is a drunken prostitute, he fears the judgment of others on this and dreams that one day his dad (whom he calls "papa") will come home. Nelson also was revealed to have worn diapers at some point in Midnight Rx since he says he was grateful to Homer and Abe's drug smuggling operation as it cured his diaper rash.
Nelson lives in a dilapidated house with his mother, from whom he learned his trademark laugh. The negligent Mrs. Muntz works either as a waitress at Hooters or in a topless bar. In "Brother from the same planet", Nelson's father appears. It is indicated many times that Nelson's father abandoned Nelson and Mrs. Muntz when he "went to pick up some cigarettes" (and never returned). Mr. Muntz appears as the children's soccer coach and awards Nelson with a free trip to Pele's Soccer and Acting School.
At one time, Nelson is adopted by Marge Simpson. To get rid of him, Bart finds Nelson's father and brings him to meet Nelson. It turned out that he did not leave Nelson deliberately; he bit into a chocolate bar, not knowing it had peanuts and had an allergic reaction. Looking like the Elephant Man, he ran out of the store and encountered a circus that made him a part of its freak show. At performances, audiences threw peanuts at him, which perpetuated his allergic reaction, never allowing him to return to normal. When the circus came through Springfield, Bart recognized him and brought him home to rid himself of the needy Nelson, who had been taken into the Simpson home by Marge, and wouldn't leave.
Relationships with others
Nelson usually leads the other bullies. Aside from two cronies whom he calls The Weasels (rarely seen after the earlier seasons), Nelson also teams up with Jimbo, Dolph, and Kearney. Nelson himself was subjected to a beating at the hands of Kearney and Jimbo at the racetrack when he used the word "guff" instead of swearing . However, Nelson has shown to be a lot stronger than the other bullies, when protecting Bart and in "Dial "N" for Nerder" when the other bullies' punches don't hurt nelson and he doesn't even notice them hitting him. Although Nelson initially was Bart's antagonist, he gradually moved through grudging respect to become Bart's "other best friend" (besides Milhouse), as indicated in The Debarted. Nelson once described Bart as having "spikey hair, soft kidneys, and always hitting himself". Although still prone to violence, Nelson sometimes hangs out with Bart and Lisa, who later develops a crush on Nelson. Bart beats up Nelson in The Debarted, smashing his head with a trash can when Nelson replied "Yes" to a question (*the correct answer was "Yes, sir").
Nelson has many other moments where he displays his hidden good nature, such as his brief amorous relationship with Lisa. Although he cannot control his delinquent tendencies, he treats her with respect and even tries to change for her, although both of them realize that he is not being true to himself by doing so. Nelson kisses Lisa, only to be berated by Jimbo, Kearney, and Dolph, who believe that kissing girls is gay (despite the fact that Jimbo kissed Laura Powers). They stop dating when Lisa finds out that Nelson threw old coleslaw at Principal Skinner's house. He also helps Lisa punish Sherri and Terri for tormenting Lisa about her butt. Their romantic relationship has been referred to several times throughout the series, most notably in the Season 22 episode, "Loan-a Lisa" in which Lisa invests in Nelson's business venture. The episode ends with Nelson taking Lisa rollerblading and the pair holding hands, hinting at a possible future romance. Nelson has even told God "If you don't bring my Lisa back ants will burn tonight". He has actually said this twice, once in the The Great Simpsina and again in Lisa's Date with Density.
Another curious example of his "good side" is with Martin Prince, the school genius, whom he cruelly bullies. However, there are occasional hints that Nelson does not harbor any hate towards Martin, and only bullies him to maintain his 'tough guy' reputation. Both Nelson and Martin attend Space Camp and it is implied that Martin had helped Nelson quite a bit and the two may have been very friendly. When it is believed that Martin has died after accidentally falling over a cliff, Nelson seeks out to learn the truth and find Martin's alleged killers, adopting an Inspector Columbo demeanor. When it is revealed that Martin is alive, Nelson mocks and punches him, but adds he is glad Martin is not dead. When Lisa tries to bribe him to not rat her out by offering to get back together with him, he denies it. While helping rescue the Springfield Lemon Tree, which is in the hands of some kids from Shelbyville, Nelson saves Martin from getting beaten up by a Shelbyville kid, even though he is clearly embarrassed by doing it, but did it so he could maintain Springfield pride.
Nelson has light brown hair and wears a short-sleeved light orange shirt with a light blue dirty, torn vest. Nelson's front teeth are false, and on a removable plate.
Although physically tough, Nelson is not always mentally tough, as shown in the episode "The Haw-Hawed Couple", where after learning Bart had been playing with Milhouse, Nelson finds tears in his eyes.
Nelson's catch phrases are "Ha-ha!" (also spelled as "Haw-haw!"), "Aw, crud!", "Smell ya later!", and "Stop hitting yourself!". The last phrase can be modified to suit the current situation/method of beating, resulting in phrases such as "Stop endangering yourself!", "Stop zapping yourself!", etc (usually to Milhouse).
Non canon appearance
The episode "Future-Drama" depicts Nelson to have dated and impregnated identical twin sisters Sherri and Terri, becoming the father to two sets of twins. He then claims to be going out to the store for a pack of cigarettes, and then flees, later explaining himself in a similar manner to his father.
In "Bart to the Future", Nelson is shown to be a rich, powerful businessman (or mob boss) who owns a bar.
In "Holidays of Future Passed", Nelson is shown to be in love with Lisa Simpson. It is implied that the two were almost married, as Lisa asked Bart, "Should I have married Nelson? "Cause we still talk on the phone!", while drunk. Secondly, Nelson talks to Lisa, asking her, "Is your marriage still dead and unfulfilled?", implying that the two had an affair. Also, Lisa says to Bart, "Well, someone calls someone.", when asked, "Nelson calls you?", implying that she calls him, rather than he calls her.
The Simpsons Game
Nelson mostly appears whenever both playable characters are killed off to taunt the player.
Behind the Laughter
According to the DVD commentary on the season five The Simpsons episode "Lady Bouvier's Lover", Nelson's first name comes from the wrestling hold, the full nelson. However, others stated that it was named after actor Judd Nelson, who portrayed John Bender in The Breakfast Club. Both Bender and Nelson have a similar appearance, personality and delinquencies.
"Who hath summoned me?"
- He is the only kid that drinks beer.
- In the episode 'Blazed and Confused' Nelson is called 'Smelson', Nelson then states that he'd prey no one would ever tease his name by calling him Smelson.
- Episode – "Luca$"
- Episode – "Days of Future Future"
- Episode – "What to Expect When Bart's Expecting"
- Episode – "Brick Like Me"
- Episode – "Pay Pal" (Block party)
- Episode – "The Simpsons Guy"
- Episode – "The Wreck of the Relationship"
- Episode – "Super Franchise Me" (At Lake Springfield)
- THOH – "Treehouse of Horror XXV" (School is Hell, A Clockwork Yellow)
- Episode – "Simpsorama" (Class)
- Episode – "Blazed and Confused"
- Episode – "Bart's New Friend"
- Episode – "Walking Big & Tall"
- Episode – "My Fare Lady"
- – The Simpsons Movie
- Video game – Apoom
- Video game – The Simpsons Cartoon Studio
- Video game – The Simpsons Road Rage
- Video game – The Simpsons: Hit and Run
- Video game – The Simpsons Game
- Video game – The Simpsons Skateboarding
- Video game – Bartman: Avenger of Evil
- Video game – Bart vs. the Space Mutants
- Video game – Bart Simpson's Escape from Camp Deadly
- Video game – The Simpsons: Tapped Out
- Comic book – Comic Fan No More
- Comic book – That's Hairable!
- Comic book – Thumb Wrasslin'!
- ↑ Sleeping with the Enemy
- ↑ http://www.answers.com/Q/What_grade_is_Nelson_Muntz_in
- ↑ Bart the General
- ↑ Das Bus
- ↑ Bart Star
- ↑ Sleeping with the Enemy
- ↑ The Monkey Suit
- ↑ Lisa Gets an "A"
- ↑ Bart Gets Famous
- ↑ The Simpsons Movie
- ↑ Little Big Girl
- ↑ Much Apu About Nothing
- ↑ The Haw-Hawed Couple
- ↑ Lisa's Date with Density
- ↑ Raging Abe Simpson and His Grumbling Grandson in "The Curse of the Flying Hellfish"
- ↑ Brother from the Same Planet
- ↑ Sleeping with the Enemy
- ↑ Saddlesore Galactica
- ↑ The Haw-Hawed Couple
- ↑ 24 Minutes
- ↑ Lisa's Date with Density
- ↑ I'm Spelling as Fast as I Can
- ↑ Dial "N" for Nerder
- ↑ Lemon of Troy
- ↑ Girls Just Want to Have Sums
| Muntz Family
|Nelson Muntz ● Mrs. Muntz ● Mr. Muntz ● Nelson Muntz, Jr. ● Judge Muntz ● Chuck Muntz ● Reilly Muntz|