“The Simpsons” first premiered on this day in 1989 in a Christmas special called “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire.” Since that first episode, “The Simpsons” has become a ubiquitous part of American culture, attracting the ire of the President of the United States, spawning a whole new generation of animated television shows -- and even crossing into the real world when a builder decided to actually design and construct a home that replicates the Simpsons' own.
As part of a wacky promotion with Fox and Pepsi, Kaufman and Broad Home Corp. built a good-as-gets replica of the Simpsons’ home outside Las Vegas and raffled it off to one lucky winner. The builder’s team spent hours watching more than 100 episodes of the show and painstakingly reconstructing the home, which must have been difficult, because rooms and details tend to change throughout the series. The four-bedroom, 2,200-square-foot home, revealed in August 1997, took 49 days to build and cost $120,000 (though recent estimates of the TV characters' home -- complete with colorful infographic! -- put its value closer to $290,000).
The home was painted with 25 different bright, primary colors to resemble the one that sits at fictional 742 Evergreen Terrace. The interior design stayed true to the Simpsons, from the corn-cob kitchen curtains to the red sofa in the living room. Bart’s treehouse and Homer’s barbecue were also out back.
According to the contest rules, the winner could either accept the home or a $75,000 cash payment. If the winner chose to accept the home, he or she would have to repaint it in a color more pleasing to the local homeowner’s association.
The winner chose the cash, and the home was stripped of its Simpsons likeness. The builder eventually sold the normal-looking home, and so it still exists as an unassuming home out in Henderson, Nevada.
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