OK, why do the Simpsons live in a town called Springfield? Isn’t that a little generic?Springfield was named after Springfield, Oregon. The only reason is that when I was a kid, the TV show “Father Knows Best” took place in the town of Springfield, and I was thrilled because I imagined that it was the town next to Portland, my hometown. When I grew up, I realized it was just a fictitious name. I also figured out that Springfield was one of the most common names for a city in the U.S. In anticipation of the success of the show, I thought, “This will be cool; everyone will think it’s their Springfield.” And they do.You’ve never said it was named after Springfield, Oregon, before, have you?I don’t want to ruin it for people, you know? Whenever people say it’s Springfield, Ohio, or Springfield, Massachusetts, or Springfield, wherever, I always go, “Yup, that’s right.”
The hidden location of Springfield is a long-running gag on the show, so it’s a surprise to hear Groening name a name now.
But note that he doesn’t explicitly say that the Simpsons live *in* Oregon, just that their town is named after the Oregon town. There’s wiggle room there if you want there to be.
Groening also says he’ll be an Oregonian himself again.
Do you plan on moving back someday?Yes. The only reason to live in Los Angeles, where I’ve been since the late ’70s, is if you have something to do with the entertainment industry. Everything you can experience in Los Angeles, you can have a much better version of in Portland—including, very basically, the air you breathe.
He also notes that “One thing that hasn’t changed is that people in Portland are in complete denial about how much it rains there.”
See the full interview.