Popular animated series The Simpsons is taking on crypto. In episode 13 of Season 31 dubbed Frinkcoin, the show, which aired on Feb. 23 on Fox, goes to great lengths to explain cryptocurrencies and the mechanics of the blockchain to the masses, borrowing Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons (Sheldon Cooper) for the task.
Basically, Parsons refers to a song and dance skit to deliver the message that cryptocurrencies are the “cash of the future,” making the technology palatable to even the most tech-averse viewers. For instance, Parsons explains the distributed ledger that records every transaction that occurs in crypto, using a singing ledger to illustrate the point:
“I’m a consensus of shared and synchronized digital data spread across multiple platforms from Shanghai to Grenada. Each day I’m closer to being cash of the future, not in your wallet I’m in your computer.”
Parsons further explains that when a single ledger book is filled, it gets added to a chain of previous books known as the blockchain.
The Simpsons boasts millions of viewers, giving the crypto community reason to cheer the show’s decision to explain the market. With the bitcoin price once again encroaching on $10,000 territory, the show couldn’t have aired at a better time to thrust cryptocurrencies and the blockchain into the spotlight. At the end of the segment, The Simpsons posts a comically written description of cryptocurrencies and the blockchain, one that self-admittedly overuses the term “cryptocurrencies,” involves LeBron James, and identifies one of the issues that the industry faces –high energy consumption by “energy-gobbling air conditioned computers solving math problems.”
Simpsons explains crypto.
the world is getting weird.
— ?Adam O? (@denverbitcoin) February 22, 2020
Crypto Mainstream Adoption
The Simpsons aren’t the first show to plug crypto. HBO’s Silicon Valley showcased crypto exchange Coinbase in the Season 5 intro and incorporated bitcoin mining into the show. They tapped members of blockchain startup Blockstack as advisors to make the new internet-themed episodes as realistic as possible. Showtime, meanwhile, hired Ben Mezrich, author of Bitcoin Billionaires, the book that spotlights Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, as a writer on its series Billions. The show also previously addressed crypto, according to a Reddit thread from a year ago explaining,
“Billions TV Show References Cryptocurrency and Ledger Wallet. Axe pays $1M in crypto to a trader at his hedge fund in cold storage.”
Meanwhile, JPMorgan has published a report on blockchain adoption in banking, which it says remains years away. JPMorgan is behind the Ethereum-based Quorum blockchain, which powers its JPM Coin and which it is reportedly is in discussions about selling to blockchain startup ConsenSys. In the report, the firm states,
“Widespread implementation of blockchain solutions in traditional banking is likely three to five years away and will be concentrated in trade finance and payments.”
Chief among the technical challenges the Wall Street banks sees slowing blockchain adoption in banking is “cross-platform integration,” which it says “may decelerate further progress.”
Incidentally, The Simpsons has accurately pinpointed other events in history, including nearly two decades ago when it predicted that Donald Trump would attain the presidency of the United States. The show also accurately forecast the details of a Lady Gaga performance and that an MIT professor would win the Nobel Prize award in economics six years before his time. So perhaps its prediction that crypto is the future of money isn’t so far-fetched.