When Matt Groening first created The Simpsons for The Tracy Ullman Show, he looked to his own family for inspiration. Of course, his family, like many others, fell into stereotypical roles that helped make the family so relatable to viewers. After all, we all have a relative like Homer Simpson somewhere on the family tree.
Bart Simpson was the bad boy of the family, as opposed to Lisa's little overachiever attitude, and his various pranks and bad decisions have steadily become bolder over the years. Today we are going to take a look back over 30 seasons of The Simpsons to explore some of the worst things that Bart Simpson has ever done.
10 STOLE THE HEAD OFF THE JEBEDIAH SPRINGFIELD STATUE
Early in the first season, The Simpsons showed it was more than a one-note comedy and explored one of Bart's pranks gone wrong after he cut off and stole the head from the statue of the town's founder, Jebediah Springfield.
This act of vandalism may have been done to impress the bullies of his school, but he quickly learned that there was a line even he didn't want to cross. This may have been one of the worst things Bart has ever done, but it was also one of the best when he returns the head and talks down mobbing Springfielders.
9 FRAMED JIMBO FOR HIS PRANK CALLS
A recurring and hilarious prank on the show has been Bart Simpson's repeated prank calls to Moe's Tavern, where he proceeds to trick Moe into calling out a thinly-veiled joke name to his bar, causing the bar to burst out into laughter and Moe into a rage.
The fourth season episode "New Girl on the Block" introduced a new crush of Bart's who ends up dating Jimbo instead. Spurned, Bart reveals to Moe that Jimbo is the person making the prank calls, causing Moe to threaten Jimbo with a knife in a truly terrifying act of child endangerment.
8 RUINED THE FAMILY'S CHRISTMAS
The ninth season episode "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" was anything but, and it was all because of Bart. After Bart connives to be the first one up on Christmas morning, he awakes to open his presents and begins playing with a remote-controlled fire truck, which then ironically sets the Christmas tree on fire, destroying it, the presents, and the Simpsons' Christmas.
Bart then makes up a story about a burglar stealing their tree and presents (which he has hidden under the snow), which becomes a huge story in Springfield and results in over $15, 000 in donations to the Simpson family. When the truth comes out, the family is left with little more than a tattered cloth and each other.
7 THREW LISA'S THANKSGIVING CENTERPIECE INTO THE FIRE
Christmas wasn't the only holiday ruined by Bart, as seen in the second season episode "Bart vs. Thanksgiving." In this episode, a particularly rambunctious Bart is feuding with his sister Lisa, who has spent all day working on her decorative centerpiece.
When Bart needs a place for the turkey, he ends up throwing the centerpiece in the fire and ruining the holiday. While the Simpson children eventually share a tender moment the Thanksgiving debacle was not one of Bart's prouder moments.
6 DESTROYED GROUNDSKEEPER WILLIE'S SHED
"Bart's People" was a successful kids news segment created by Bart (with help from Kent Brockman) during the ninth season episode "Girly Edition." Bart and Lisa were unhappy co-anchors, and Lisa's jealousy over Bart's success led her to sabotage his new segment of "Bart's People."
Sure, this sounds like an entry for worst thing's Lisa has done wrong, but her sabotage included revealing the fact that Bart had destroyed Groundskeeper Willie's shack (and home) by flooding it with cream corn after Willie confiscated Bart's skateboard, forcing Willie to live at the dump. Not the best day for the Simpson kids.
5 PRETENDED TO BE A BOY TRAPPED IN A WELL
There is usually a balancing act at work when it comes to Bart's pranks that go a little too far, as we saw in the third season episode "Radio Bart." After Bart receives a prank microphone that uses radio frequencies, he lowers a walkie talkie into a well and pretends to be Timmy, a young boy trapped in a well who the world soon rallies around.
Unfortunately, Bart also used the label maker he got for his birthday to label the evidence with his name. This is where his comeuppance finally swings around, as Bart finds himself subsequently trapped in the well as the hurt townfolk turn their back on him, with only Homer and Sting left to save the day.
4 GOT SANTA'S LITTLE HELPER ADDICTED TO CIGARETTES
It's amazing what the Simpson children will do in the name of science. Obviously, Lisa is the standout child when it comes to the sciences, as she proves in the fourth season episode "Duffless." In one of many of Springfield Elementary's science fairs, Lisa grows a genetically altered giant tomato.
Bart's contribution to the science fair? Shortly after Lisa shows the family her giant tomato, Bart reveals that his entry tests the effects of Laramie cigarettes on animals, namely, his faithful dog Santa's Little Helper. Bart's uncaring treatment of his loyal friend is only the first of a few awful things done in this episode, but definitely the worst.
3 PARALYZED HIS FATHER
With Bart's history of pranks, it should be no surprise that April Fool's Day would come into play at some point. However, it was Homer who had gained the pranking advantage in the fourth season episode "So It's Come to This: A Simpsons Clip Show."
To get his revenge, Bart puts a can of Duff beer into a paint shaker, which Homer then opens, causing a low-level nuclear explosion of beer foam. This explosion paralyzes Homer and confines him to a wheelchair, and eventually results in Homer falling into a coma until the end of the episode.
2 INFECTED AUSTRALIA WITH BULLFROGS
Bart's poor behavior is a central theme in the sixth season episode "Bart vs. Australia," which saw the Simpsons head down under after Bart prank called the country, racking up a massive telephone bill. The family is urged by the US government to make peace with the country, though things don't quite go as planned.
However, Bart and the Simpsons get the last laugh, as it is revealed the bullfrog released by Bart into a fountain at the Australian airport has bred profusely and spread across the Australian countryside, severely damaging the countries delicate ecosystem, which had been ravaged in the real-world by a cane toad infestation.
1 ALMOST KILLED MARTIN PRINCE
Lisa again plays a role in one of Bart's worst actions on The Simpsons, which was one of the more recent entries on the list from the nineteenth season episode "Dial 'N' For Nerder." One of Bart's classic pranks again takes a deadly turn, as he inadvertently knocks Martin Prince off a cliff.
While it was Lisa who ended up further pushing Martin off of the smaller ledge he had fallen to, Bart's rejection of their actions that day as he tried to ignore their involvement in the potential death of their school chum makes this one of Bart's worst behaviors ever on the series. Thankfully Martin survived his fall, and no lessons were learned.