Homer's personality and comic efficacy lies in his frequent bouts of stupidity, laziness and his explosive anger. He has a low intelligence level, described by director David Silverman as "creatively brilliant in his stupidity". Homer also shows immense apathy towards work, is overweight, and "is devoted to his stomach". His short attention span is evidenced by his impulsivedecisions to engage in various hobbies and enterprises, only to "change... his mind when things go badly".Homer often spends his evenings drinking Duff Beer at Moe's Tavern and, as shown in the episode "Duffless" (season four, 1993), is a borderline alcoholic. He is very envious of his neighbors, the Flanders family, and is easily enraged by Bart. Homer will often strangle Bart on impulse in acartoonish manner. The first instance of Homer strangling Bart was in the short "Family Portrait". Matt Groening's rule was that Homer could only strangle Bart impulsively, never with pre-meditation, and that it would always be over quickly. Another of the original ideas entertained by Groening was that Homer would "always get his comeuppance or Bart had to strangle him back", but this was dropped. Heshows no compunction about expressing his rage, and does not attempt to hide his actions from people outside the family. While Homer has repeatedly upset people and caused all sorts of mayhem in Springfield, these events usually result from a lack of foresight or his intense temper, rather than any malice. Except for expressing annoyance at Ned Flanders, Homer's destructive actions are usuallyunintentional.
The first sketch of Homer strangling Bart, drawn in 1988
Homer has complex relationships with all three of his children. He often berates Bart, but the two commonly share adventures and are sometimes allies. Homer and Lisa have opposite personalities and he usually overlooks Lisa's talents, but when made aware of his neglect does everything he can to help her. He sometimes forgetsthat Maggie even exists, although Homer has often tried to bond with her; "daddy" was her first word. While Homer's thoughtless antics often upset his family, he has also revealed himself to be a caring father and husband: in "Lisa the Beauty Queen", (season four, 1992) he sold his cherished ride on the Duff blimp and used the money to enter Lisa in a beauty pageant so she could feel better aboutherself; in "Rosebud", (season five, 1993) he gave up his chance at wealth to allow Maggie to keep a cherished teddy bear; in "Radio Bart", (season three, 1992) he spearheaded an attempt to dig Bart out after he had fallen down a well; and in "A Milhouse Divided", (season eight, 1996) he arranged a surprise second wedding with Marge to make up for their unsatisfactory first ceremony. Homer howeverhas a poor relationship with his father Abraham "Grampa" Simpson, whom he placed in a nursing home as soon as he could. The Simpson family will often do their best to avoid unnecessary contact with Grampa, but Homer has shown feelings of love for his father from time to time.
Homer is "a (happy) slave to his various appetites", and would gladly sell his soul to the devil in exchange for a singledoughnut. He has a vacuous mind but is still able to retain a great amount of knowledge about very specific subjects. Homer’s brief periods of intelligence are overshadowed however by much longer and consistent periods of ignorance, forgetfulness, and stupidity. Homer has a low IQ of 55 which has variously been attributed to the hereditary "Simpson Gene", his alcohol problem, exposure toradioactive waste, repetitive cranial trauma, and a crayon lodged in the frontal lobe of his brain. In the episode "HOMR" (season 12, 2001) Homer had surgery to remove the crayon from his brain, boosting his IQ to 105, but although he bonded very well with Lisa, his newfound capacity for understanding and reason made him less happy and he had Moe reinsert a crayon, causing his intelligence to return to...