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"The Tracey Ullman Show" was a half hour music/comedy/variety show on Fox starring Tracey Ullman herself. For the most part, the series served as a platform to showcase Ullman's ability to do characters and every show featured various comedy and musical skits. It also occasionally featured various amusing animated shorts. One series of shorts stood out and soon became the exclusive animated series on the show. That series was called The Simpsons.

The characters in the shorts were voiced by the show's cast members (Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Yeardley Smith, and Nancy Cartwright) and eventually every episode of Ullman's program would have three Simpsons shorts linked by a common plot such as Bart going to get a haircut. The art slowly changed as well, as the Simpsons seen in the first shorts look like only rough sketches of what the characters eventually became. When "The Tracey Ullman Show" finished a four season run in 1990, The Simpsons was reborn as a full-length show and became the driving force behind Fox's growth into a major network.

"Good Night"Airdate: 04/19/87
As Marge and Homer say goodnight to the kids, Bart philosophically ponders the workings of the mind; Lisa hears Marge say, "Don't let the bedbugs bite," and fears that the bedbugs will eat her; Maggie listens to Marge sing "Rock-a-Bye-Baby" and is traumatized by the lyrics.

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"Watching TV"Airdate: 05/03/87
Bart and Lisa argue over what to watch on TV and they can only agree about stopping Maggie from trying to change the channel.

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"Jumping Bart"Airdate: 05/10/87
Homer always tries to get Bart to jump into his arms, but just misses catching him whenever Bart attempts to do so.

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"Babysitting Maggie"Airdate: 05/31/87
Bart and Lisa are asked to babysit Maggie, but instead they ignore her. Maggie electrocutes herself, falls down the stairs, and chases a butterfly onto the roof and back down again.

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"The Pacifier"Airdate: 06/21/87
Bart and Lisa try to get Maggie to stop sucking her pacifier, but Maggie, who has an entire drawerful of them, refuses to give up the habit.

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"Burping Contest"Airdate: 06/28/87
Despite Marge's objections, Bart, Lisa, and even Maggie compete in a contest to see who can make the most disgusting burp.

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"Dinnertime"Airdate: 07/12/87
Marge serves the family purple goop for dinner, insisting that they say grace first.

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"Making Faces"Airdate: 09/22/87
Bart, Lisa, and Maggie make a succession of scary faces at one another despite Marge's warning that their facial positions will be frozen in place forever.

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"The Funeral"Airdate: 10/04/87
The family attends Uncle Hubert's funeral. Bart is excited to see a dead body for the first time but passes out when he glances into the casket.

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"What's Maggie Thinking"Airdate: 10/11/87
Bart and Lisa hover over Maggie's crib, wondering what she's thinking. Maggie sees them first as demons and then as defenseless infants whom she towers over and tickles.

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"Football"Airdate: 10/18/87
Bart will win a round of frosty chocolate milkshakes if he can catch one of his father's long football passes. Unfortunately, he must stop at the cliff, watching the football, and the milkshakes, disappear...

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"House of Cards"Airdate: 10/25/87
Bart's attempt to build a house of cards are constantly interrupted by Lisa and Maggie's sucking sounds.

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"Bart and Homer's Dinner"Airdate: 11/01/87
When the girls go out to the ballet, Homer gives Bart a dinner choice of fish nuggets or pork-a-roni.

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"Space Patrol"Airdate: 11/08/87
Lisa, Bart, and Maggie role-play a Save-the-Earth game. Lisa is space pilot Lisuey, Maggie is her energetic sidekick Mageena, and Bart is Bartron, the crazed Martian robot who looks like Bart with a vase stuck to his head.

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"Bart's Haircut"Airdate: 11/15/87
Bart goes to a barber who does not know how to trim hair and ends up getting scalped.

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"World War III"Airdate: 11/22/87
Obsessed with getting ready for the Apocalypse, Homer repeatedly awakens the family for nuclear-attack drills.

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"The Perfect Crime"Airdate: 12/13/87
Bart sets out to steal cookies, figuring that Maggie will take the blame. Instead, he eats too many cookies and lays down among the crumbs to recover, revealing the evidence.

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"Scary Stories"Airdate: 12/20/87
Bart tells Lisa and Maggie scary stories in the dark that seem to come true.

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"Grampa and the Kids"Airdate: 01/10/88
Grampa tells Bart, Lisa, and Maggie boring stories about the good old days. Realizing that they are not listening, he feigns his own death to recapture their attention.

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"Gone Fishin'"Airdate: 01/24/88
Bart forgets to pack bologna for his fishing trip wtih Homer, and secretly substitutes worms in his father's sandwich. Afterwards, father and son take an impromptu ride down the rapids.

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"Skateboarding"Airdate: 02/07/88
Bart, Lisa, and Maggie ride the local sidewalks on their skateboards, not always with success.

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"The Pagans"Airdate: 02/14/88
While driving to church, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie anger their parents by deciding to convert to paganism.

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"Closeted"Airdate: 02/21/88
Bart hides in the closet to avoid his chores and ends up outsmarting himself by getting locked in. By the time he escapes, the family has already left to get a round of frosty chocolate milkshakes.

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"The Aquarium"Airdate: 02/28/88
At the aquarium, Bart foolishly risks his life to do tricks in the shark tank.

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"Family Portrait"Airdate: 03/06/88
Homer gathers the family for a portrait, but the family continually sabotages his efforts to strike a normal family pose. During this short, Homer strangles Bart for the first time.

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"Bart's Hiccups"Airdate: 03/13/88
Lisa and Maggie try to help Bart stop hiccuping, resorting to unorthodox methods to cure their brother of the health nuisance.

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"The Money Jar"Airdate: 03/20/88
Lisa, Bart, and Maggie try to stave off the temptation to steal Marge's money from a cookie jar.

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"The Art Museum"Airdate: 05/01/88
Marge and Homer take the kids to an art museum. After Bart ogles a nude painting while Lisa plays with an ancient vase, Marge realizes that the kids are not mature enough to appreciate fine art.

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"Zoo Story"Airdate: 05/08/88
The Simpsons go to the zoo, where Homer and Bart have a close encounter with a family of monkeys.

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"Shut Up, Simpsons"Airdate: 11/06/88
Grampa, Homer, and the kids persist in arguing until they formally forgive one another. Bart's forgiveness comes with strings attached: he asks Homer to use a breath mint.

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"Shell Game"Airdate: 11/13/88
Bart tries to hide a cookie he stole from the cookie jar. He covers it with one bowl and, finally, to keep his parents guessing, with three bowls.

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"The Bart Simpson Show"Airdate: 11/20/88
Homer demands that the kids stop watching their favorite cartoon, "Itchy & Scratchy." Bart turns off the TV, pulls out the picture tube, gets inside the set, and puts on his own show. And yes, you guessed it - this was the first appearance of Itchy & Scratchy.

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"Punching Bag"Airdate: 11/27/88
A punching bag wtih Homer's picture on it inspires Bart, Lisa, and Marge to new heights of boxing prowess.

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"Simpson Christmas"Airdate: 12/18/88
Bart narrates a holiday tale to the strains of "'Twas the Night before Christmas," which features the Simpson kids sneaking a peek at their Christmas presents.

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"The Krusty the Clown Show"Airdate: 01/15/89
The kids go to see Krusty the Clown's live TV show. To his great disappointment, Bart discovers that his hero is not a real clown but merely some guy in clown makeup. This was Krusty's first appearance in the shorts.

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"Bart the Hero"Airdate: 01/29/89
When Bart goes to the candy store for a candy bar, he unwittingly foils a robbery attempt and becomes a hero.

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"Bart's Little Fantasy"Airdate: 02/05/89
Prompted by his parents' order to clean up his messy room, Bart tells a tale in which children look and sound like the parents and parents look and sound like children.

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"Scary Movie"Airdate: 02/12/89
Instead of going to see Return of the Happy Little Elves, a fearless Bart convinces his sisters to see Revenge of the Space Mutants.

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"Home Hypnotism"Airdate: 02/19/89
Marge and Homer use hypnosis to try to make Bart, Lisa, and Maggie behave. The children pretend to act like zombies.

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"Shoplifting"Airdate: 02/26/89
Bart is busted when he tries to steal chocolate from a candy store.

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"Echo Canyon"Airdate: 03/12/89
During a family vacation, the Simpsons stop at Echo Canyon, where everyone frolics and Bart nearly crunches the family car with a boulder.

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"Bathtime"Airdate: 03/19/89
To make his bath more exciting, Bart mimics Jacques Cousteau but leaves the water running in the bathroom.

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"Bart's Nightmare"Airdate: 03/26/89
After devouring too many cookies, Bart has a nightmare in which Homer catches him stealing cookies and threatens to punish him.

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"Bart of the Jungle"Airdate: 04/16/89
Homer is incensed at Bart, Lisa, and Maggie, who are swinging from trees on makeshift vines made from Homer's ties.

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"Family Therapy"Airdate: 04/23/89
Homer tricks the family into going to a psychologist by pretending to take them out for frosty chocolate milkshakes. He seeks an answer to the family's problems, saying that they don't laugh anymore. The family breaks into a collective chuckle after the psychologist kicks them out of his office.

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"Maggie in Peril (Chapter One)"Airdate: 04/30/89
Bart and Lisa do a poor job babysitting for Maggie. Unsupervised, she hops on Bart's skateboard and rolls through a sewage pipe to a waterfall. As she goes over the falls, the short ends, to be continued the following week.

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"Maggie in Peril (The Thrilling Conclusion)"Airdate: 05/07/89
Maggie survives her trip over the falls, flies out of the river and into a carnival, grabs onto helium balloons, and lands safely back into her playpen - just as her parents return home.

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"TV Simpsons"Airdate: 05/14/89
Homer sends Bart outside to fly a kite, but the kite gets tangled in the antenna and distorts the TV picture. Homer is forced to climb up onto the roof to restore it.

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