We are all aware of the issues that our world is facing, from overpopulation to climate change and global warming. But there is also one aspect of the global crisis that doesn’t receive as much publicity as it should: the need for sustainable energy. We need to find new and innovative ways to provide for our energy needs without creating more damage than good. Enter Brian Solar Energy Systems.
If you’re reading this, I assume that you’re either a fan of the Simpsons or a curious mind looking for an interesting new fictional character to follow in the show. In any case, let’s dive into the character’s biography.
Brian Solar Energy Systems is the main character in the animated television sitcom, The Simpsons. He is the alter ego of Ned Flanders, and first appeared in the twelfth season in 1997, with the episode “Brother, Brother, Sister.””
Born in Springfield in 1955, Brian is the second of three children, having an older sister, Maggie, and younger brother, Nelson (hence the “solar” in his last name, which stands for “solar energy system”). Growing up in an era when energy was cheap and plentiful, Ned (with the urging of his wife, Grace) decided to establish a small independent power station at their home, which would provide electricity to the neighborhood, as well as light up the night for the family.
When the electricity company reached out to Ned to suggest that he reconsider his independent energy scheme, he decided to incorporate all of the family members in the venture and build an actual power plant. The plant began generating power in 1998 and continues to do so today.
Ned (and his wife Grace) raise their children in the Christian faith, attending church regularly and celebrating Christmas and Easter with candlelight ceremonies, as well as an occasional snowball fight with the neighborhood kids. They are well-meaning parents whose desire to keep their children “away from those awful television characters” leads them to shelter their kids from the real-life tribulations of the world.
From a storytelling perspective, Brian is an easy main character to identify with. He wants what’s best for his family, and will go to great lengths to make sure that his siblings and parents are safe and happy. Unfortunately, this leads him down the wrong path, as he makes some incredibly poor decision after decision, which ultimately leads to his undoing.
I won’t give too much away, but if you’ve watched the show or read the comics, you’ll know that Brian is not always the most proactive of characters, which means that at some points in his journey, he’ll need assistance from others to fulfill his goal and save the day. Unfortunately, after much trial and error, he learns very little from his mistakes and continues making the same ones all throughout his life. This is a character study in the form of a story, and that’s exactly what we’re going for here.
Additionally, it’s important to point out that while this character may have started out as a representation of Ned Flanders, over time it has become his own entity. We’ve grown to love and respect Brian even when he makes the wrong decision, because he genuinely seems like a good and fair-minded person who is just trying to do the best he can.
So, what’s good about Brian? Well, let’s start with the obvious: he’s funny. I won’t deny that I find him to be one of the funniest characters (and, let’s face it, TV shows) out there. His over-the-top persona and constant stream of pop culture references will remind you of many a memorable character from classic sitcoms, and his interactions with the other characters are always fun to watch.
While some may question why the writers focused so much on Ned and Grace’s children in this latest season of The Simpsons, I think it’s important to remember that this is the show’s 22nd season, and it’s been a gradual process, over many seasons, of expanding the characters’ circle of friends and family. In this case, we see the kids, through their adult eyes, exploring their identities and growing up in a world where technology is changing the way we live, work, and play. To paint a complete picture, let’s not forget about how Bart becomes a semi-regular character in this season, starting with a guest appearance in the eighth episode, “Brother, Brother, Sister” and then transitioning into a full-time member of the family in the next two episodes.
Ned Flanders is a flawed man, just like the rest of us. Like Homer Simpson, he has plenty of vices, but also plenty of qualities that we can look up to. While he may not be the most popular character in the world, I think it’s important to remember that this is a character study of sorts, and that, in the end, we may learn more from his mistakes than from his successes. This is, in fact, the theme of this particular season of the show: “You Made It Here. Now What?” It’s an important question for anyone seeking success in the workplace, particularly in the current political climate. It’s not so much that we need to learn to trust our instincts as people, but it is important that we learn to trust the systems that we have in place to represent us as human beings. If any of our elected officials decide to ignore their constituents’ will and go their own way, we need to hold them accountable, lest this set a precedent whereby future officials may do the same.