Looks like the prognosticators behind The Simpsons have done it again. Following Richard Branson’s historic trip to space earlier this week, fans discovered the long-running animated sitcom actually prophesied the event way back in 2014.
According to Deadline, the moment occurs briefly during the Season 25 episode “The Art of War,” which finds art forger Klaus Ziegler bragging to Lisa Simpson about how his work “give[s] pleasure to people all over the world.” Case in point: The Virgin billionaire Branson enjoying one of Ziegler’s forgeries from the comfort of his space ship.
Branson didn’t take any forgeries on his actual space flight, which saw him heading to zero gravity aboard his Virgin Galactic supersonic space plane, the SpaceShipTwo. In the early hours of Sunday morning, the British business magnate rocketed to suborbital space from New Mexico alongside a number of Virgin Galactic employees and the plane’s two pilots.
While his companions floated around him, Branson taped a special message from SpaceShipTwo, telling children watching the monumental moment, “To all you kids out there — I was once a child with a dream, looking up to the stars. Now I’m an adult in a spaceship… To the next generation of dreamers, if we can do this, just imagine what you can do.”
Branson’s space flight comes just nine days ahead of fellow billionaire Jeff Bezos’ own planned attempt, which is set to occur on Tuesday to mark the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing on July 20, 1969.
Of course, the billionaire space race is far from the first modern event predicted by The Simpsons writers’ room. Over the years, the show has accurately forecast everything from the winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize in Economics to Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl Halftime performance to Disney’s acquisition of 20th (now 21st) Century Fox. The series has been particularly prescient about politics, eerily predicting the presidency of Donald Trump, Ted Cruz’s tone-deaf Cancún vacation, and even Kamala Harris’ inauguration outfit.
Check out footage from Branson’s trip to space below.
Earlier this month, the residents of Springfield found themselves in a Marvel crossover thanks to Tom Hiddleston’s Loki in “The Good, The Bart, and The Loki” on Disney+.
"To all you kids down there…" – @RichardBranson's message from zero gravity. #Unity22
Watch the livestream: https://t.co/5UalYT7Hjb pic.twitter.com/lYXHNsDQcU
— Virgin Galactic (@virgingalactic) July 11, 2021