Did The Simpsons Parody Frank Kermit?
I was sitting at my computer working one day, until I heard my son Tadpole shouting,
"Dad! Dad! Look!
You're on The Simpsons! You're on the Simpsons!"
Trying to calm him down from his excitement, I wanted to understand what he was going on about.
He was watching a clip of The Simpsons on youtube (watch the video below).
My son has always been a fan of The Simpsons. As an infant, we had to give up our cable television to help balance the bills at that time, so we would buy whatever VHS/DVDs of The Simpsons that we would find at garage sales and thrift stores.
He would watch the VHS/DVDs over, and over, and over, and over.....and over. At the time, he was just tall enough to reach the VCR/DVD players and had learned to use them just by watching us turn them on and hit the play button. As he got older, his craving for The Simpsons led him to Youtube and the abundance of youtube clips of episodes that he never got to view on VHS or DVD.
It was in early 2018, that he came across the Youtube video below, and spotted a book title that sounded shockingly similar to a book that he knows his daddy wrote.
Check out 1:32 on the video to see the book cover of motivational speaker and dating coach Dr. Kissingher entitled, "From Loser To User".
The original air date was February 13, 2011
When the researchers for the The Simpsons were looking up pick-up/dating/seduction books to parody, is it possible they came across my book, "From Loser To Seducer" and were inspired by that title to parody it to "From Loser To User"?
Given that at the time, I was selling my paperback books through a print-on-demand self-publisher and my library there was a popular seller (got a Best Seller designation around that time period), it is very likely that they would have come across my books if they were researching that subject.
Below are the comparative book covers, The Simpsons book by Dr Kissingher, From Loser to User and the autobiography of Frank Kermit From Loser To Seducer, and their respective release dates. It was released in 2006.
Notice the 5 year difference.
If this was in fact an official parody, then I am grateful.
To have any of my work parodied on a program like The Simpsons is truly an honor.
I really do hope that someone related to the show can offer some kind of confirmation of influence one day. When my son found this clip, and the possibility of a parody, I was touched. When I first started this journey the thought that I might one day be in the media enough to merit a parody in a show like The Simpsons.
As a Relationship Expert, I have been on Television, on regulated professional broadcast radio, podcasts, web-series, in newspapers, and even inspired a character named Frank Biggs in a comic strip by Ricky Whitney (who also did the artwork for the article image above). It would be very meaningful to know that something I created was a parodied on such an iconic platform as The Simpsons.
My hope is that I get to talk to the researcher to get a confirmation, and that maybe one day, my son might get to have a telephone conversation with The Simpsons voice actors so he can talk to Bart Simpsons and Mr. Burns (two of the characters he would like to speak too).
If this was just a coincidence, then I will be heartbroken.
The idea that I could have been, but then found out wasn't, parodied on one of the greatest television programs in the history of television leaves me saddened.
But I am still grateful that The Simpsons exist.
When I studied a class on animation at Dawson College under Prof. David Grey, I wrote a short paper on the episode of "Stark Raving Dad" featuring the late Michael Jackson as the speaking voice of Leon Kompowsky under the pseudonym John Jay Smith. It was almost 30 years ago, and I do not even remember the content of the paper (this was at a time when papers were hand-written because computers and type written papers wasn't yet a thing). But I remember enjoying The Simpsons enough to write about them back then. The Simpsons were a part of my life.
When my son wanted some entertainment, and we were so strapped for cash, I am grateful for the VHS/DVDs of The Simpsons that we would come across that kept him amused, and the clips he still watches today; The Simpsons are still a part of my life.
When I do something that is very Homer-ish (I am husband now after all) and my wife Jade gives me the Marge noise (the Hmmm grumble), while she exclaims "I know how Marge feels!" The Simpsons continue to be a part of my life (and my marriage provided that my Homer-ish quirks don't cause her to file for divorce one day). D'oh!
Read an account from Jade about some of Frank's Homer-ish moments in the introduction to the book From Loser To Seducer
Either Way, I doubt I will ever get confirmation on this.
Either way, whether this was just a coincidence (I hope not), or they did in fact use my autobiography title From Loser To Seducer as a muse for the Dr Kissingher book title From Loser To User (I hope so!) I doubt I will ever get confirmation.
It is likely that even if it was a direct parody, and even though they are fully protected by Fair Use laws to be able to do so, without asking permissions, pay royalties, or even acknowledge it, they would not do it. Somewhere in all this is someone that would rather limit any potential liability.
With that said, I am aware I am not entitled to anything from the show, including that I am not entitled to any acknowledgement of the nature of this potential parody. I would not sue them anyways. If anything, I would ask them to arrange for my kid to get the phone call, and work together with them to help create a new Simpsons memory for a great kid.
So for legal reasons, among other reasons, I hardly expect anything.
In truth, the LAST thing I want to do is become an enemy of The Simpsons. The last guy named Frank (and his son Frank Jr) did not fair very well against Homer (of course I am speaking of the late Frank Grimes and his son Frank Grimes Jr). I certainly do not want to be lumped in with those other Franks.
Frank Grimes aka Grimey does NOT equal Frank Kermit
Just Not Famous Enough
Fact is, I am good at what I do. I am a good dating coach, author of 20+ books and over 70+ hours of recorded lectures on the subjects of emotional needs, dating, relationships, and love.
I love what I do. I love helping people to the next level of their love lives.
But I am not famous for doing what I do. Oh well.
Yet, I can still enjoy the possibility of having been parodied on The Simpsons, and for what it is worth, it makes me happy to know the possibility exists.
Maybe one day, I will be famous enough (for a good reason) to be parodied on The Simpsons.
Synopsis: Season 22, episode 13
Title: The Blue and the Gray
Marge discovers her natural gray hair, and Homer becomes a Valentine's Day wingman to Moe, much to Marge's suspicion that Homer is cheating on her.
After spending another Valentine’s Day alone, Moe attends a seminar led by Dr. Kissingher in the hopes of gaining more confidence with women. Moe takes the doctor’s advice and asks Homer to be his wingman, but Moe becomes distraught when women are drawn to Homer as well. Later, Marge confronts Homer when she learns that he is becoming increasingly popular with the young ladies.
Original Air date February 13, 2011
Dr. Laurie Betito Quotes