There is likely no show or pop-culture stalwart more meme-worthy and meme-generating than The Simpsons. The long-running animated Fox sitcom transcends generations and for that reason has always tried to stay modern -- and even postmodern. It doesn't get any more meta than the show referencing itself with one of its most famous GIFs.
In a Sunday night post, The Simpsons' Twitter account shared a new GIF containing an old GIF from a classic episode. Below the caption, "Time to head back into the bushes! Another episode of #TheSimpsons in the books," Lisa texts Homer, who insists he lost his phone. She reminds him he is texting her with it, so he signs off with the famous GIF of himself fading backward into the bushes.
The clip comes from the episode "Homer Loves Flanders," where a budding friendship between neighbor Ned Flanders and the usually quarrelsome Homer causes Ned to slowly go mad. Its scene of origin involves Homer emerging from the bushes to ask Ned, in the driveway with Rod and Tod, if he wants to hang out, only to be quickly rebuffed and retreat just as fast into the brush.
"Homer Loves Flanders" aired in the show's fifth season. The episode was pitched by late-night host and former show writer Conan O'Brien before he left and ultimately written by David Richardson. Fondly remembered by fans and critics, it was only a matter of time before the iconic moment with Homer and foliage from the episode became a go-to way for exiting a conversation.
Created by Matt Groening and going strong in its record-setting 30th season, The Simpsons airs Sundays on Fox.