“The Simpsons: 10 Hidden Details About The Kwik-E-Mart You Never Noticed”
There are a few locations in Springfield that are iconic in The Simpsons such as the family home, Moe’s, and the school. But the Kwik-E-Mart is one to the hottest spots in town, no matter what the manager of Shotkickers tells you. Apu and his family have lovingly gouged the city’s residents for years, and have shown no signs of stopping. But even after all the seasons, all the Squishees, and all the armed robberies, there are still a few weird things about the most inconvenient convenience store in America you might not know about.
10 It’s Apparently Squishee Tight
While the products on the shelves of the Kwik-E-Mart are low quality, the building that houses it apparently isn’t. At one point, a malfunctioning Squishee machine flooded the entire store. Flooded might actually be the wrong word, as filled is more appropriate. A malfunctioning Squishee machine filled the entire store, floor to ceiling and wall to wall. The weird thing was very little of it was leaking out. As long as the sliding doors stayed closed, the building was Squishee tight. Scuba divers had to work on the machine.
9 Where Homer Met Peter
For many years, The Simpsons and Family Guy have aired in the same TV block but have only crossed paths in quick sight gags. Then in 2014, the two families finally met in a Family Guy episode called “The Simpsons Guy.” Unsurprisingly, Peter does something stupid, makes it worse, and the Griffins gets run out of Quahog.
That’s happened to the Simpsons a few time, too. Naturally, the Griffins end up in the unfamiliar town of Springfield after driving for awhile without any real direction. They stop at the Kwik-E-Mart where they meet Homer J. Simpson and everything spirals from there.
The first mention of the Kwik-E-Mart is in the season one episode titled “Bart the General.” Under siege by Nelson and his Weasels, Bart goes to Grandpa for help who in turn takes him to see Herman at the Military Antiques store. They devise a classic pincer strategy to take the bully down. In the episode, Bart and company create a model of the city to build their plan. On it, the sign for the Kwik-E-Mart sign reads “Quick-E-Mart.” While it’s easy to write this off as Bart’s mistake, this was reputedly the original spelling of the store’s name.
7 Are There More Of These Stores?
One of the weirdest things about the Kwik-E-Mart chain is how few of them seem to be around. The most notable time that another location pops up is when Homer and Apu travel to the HQ. It is, of course, on the top of a treacherous mountain. The only location on Earth that could be less convenient would be the bottom of the Marianas Trench.
Other than that, Apu’s store might be the only Kwik-E-Mart that appears in the series. If not, they are few and far between, making you wonder how successful the chain is. The Simpsons have traveled significantly, and rarely come across another.
6 The Marts Of America
While Kwik-E-Mart might have a shockingly small presence, there are plenty of other Marts around America in The Simpsons. In Ohio, Kwik-E-Mart is known as Stop-O-Mart though it is reputedly still part of the same company. But over in Shelbyville, they have Speed-E-Mart. Knowing those Shelbyville jerks, this is just a knockoff version of the far superior Kwik-E-Mart. That being said, all of this does pose an interesting question. Is the reason that so few Kwik-E-Marts appear outside of Springfield simply that they are disguised as other brands?
5 Real World Versions
The disguise theory certainly seems to be true in the real world. Over the years, tangible versions of the Kwik-E-Mart have popped up in various locations. As part of the promotional campaign for The Simpsons Movie, 7-Elevens in the US and Canada were converted into Kwik-E-Marts and sold show appropriate products like Krusty-O’s, Buzz Cola, and Squishees.
Then in 2018, the first permanent Kwik-E-Mart was opened in Myrtle Beach. It’s quite possible at this point that more Kwik-E-Marts have existed in the real world than what has been shown on The Simpsons.
4 The Mysterious Gas Pumps
Facing mounting pressure from the nearby Gas’N’Gulp, Apu installed 16 brand new gas pumps. Unfortunately, a round of mortars from the nearby Fort Springfield landed moments later and annihilated them. Such is life in Springfield. This all went down in a season five episode. But two years later in season seven, the gas pumps were mysteriously back for one scene in one episode. Appartently, the Kwik-E-Mart has the ability to spontaneously generate gas pumps for specific gags or whatever else is needed to help a joke land.
3 Daily Robberies
The Kwik-E-Mart gets robbed a lot. It’s an insane amount, and almost always by Snake, though Homer has considered it. Apu gets held up by Snake so frequently that the robberies have to be happening almost daily, when you stop and actually think about the numbers.
The crazy part is that this relationship between Apu and Snake might actually be the longest and most stable either man has ever had. They have even gone to counselling to keep that relationship on solid footing. There might be a slight case of Stockholm syndrome happening at the Kwik-E-Mart.
2 It Exists In Lego Form
For a very brief period, Lego made sets based on The Simpsons. They did two waves of blind packed mini figures featuring different characters as well as two buildings. The first was The Simpsons’ house, which makes perfect sense. The second was the Kwik-E-Mart, an equally iconic location in the show. The set is filled with incredible details such as the magazine rack with individual tiny magazines, a freezer with Frostilicus sticker on it, and Apu’s rooftop garden. Naturally, it also came with Snake because you can’t have Apu without him.
1 Nordine Defence Dynamics
The parent company of Kwik-E-Mart has been mentioned once and only once in the entire run of The Simpsons. When Marge was on trial for shoplifting, Apu mentioned the name Nordine Defence Dynamics, which is presumably some sort of arms manufacturer. In corporate America, it’s important to diversify your holdings but this still seems like a weird association. It’s also suspicious when you consider that Springfield is the designated targeting test subject for America’s nuclear weapons in case of war.
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