- “Hey hey, kids!”
- ―Krusty's catchphrase
- ―Krusty's laugh / catchphrase
- “Why, you little!”
- ―Krusty to Bart in The Krusty the Clown Show
Herschel Shmoikel Pinchas Yerucham Krustofsky, formerly known as Rory B. Bellows, better known by his stage name Krusty the Clown, is the cynical, burnt-out, addiction-riddled smoking clown host of Bart, Lisa and Maggie's favorite TV show The Krusty the Clown Show. He is 52 years old. He is a recurring character in The Simpsons and has a supporting role in The Simpsons Movie.
Herschel Krustofsky had Jewish parents living with his father in the Jewish community. As a rabbi his father heavily criticized his son's career choice as a comedian. Keeping his entertainment lifestyle a secret, Krusty continued his role as a comedian until the day when his father came to one of his shows. And a rowdy rabbi sprayed the makeup off his face. After this event his father stopped talking to him, and they didn't make contact until many years later with Bart and Lisa Simpson.
Krusty is a hard-living entertainment veteran who has been down and out several times (always being rescued by the Simpson children) and remains addicted to cigarettes and alcohol (and, in two episodes, Percodan). He seems to suffer from bipolar disorder and in a Soupy Sales parody, asked children to send him spare lithium from their parents' medicine cabinets after the nuclear channel 6 cut off its prescription drug plan. He says that his tolerance levels are so high from years of excess he has to smoke ground-up "moon rocks" to get normal. Krusty – minus his trademark clown-hair, pale "facepaint" and red nose – bears an uncanny physical resemblance to Homer Simpson. However, there also differences such as his cow-skull birthmark, his superfluous papilla, meaning third nipple, and his small feet. Krusty, like Homer, has apparently faced heart problems in the past as he currently has a pacemaker, which has since permanently made his face white.
He also seems to be disturbed at even the mere mention of someone having an affair, as when Homer tells Krusty the Clown that Apu was cheating on Manjula (due to his thinking he would joke about it), he reacted quite differently from how Homer expected by saying in a remorseful tone that it was sad, and feeling sorry for all of their kids. Krusty lives in his mansion in the upscale residential area of "Springfield Heights", which is also home to mob don "Fat" Tony D'Amico and actor Troy McClure, though at one time he lived in the suburbs at 534 Center Street. Still, Krusty is involved in some business.
When he was a young man, Krusty was similar to what Homer was like when he enrolled into clown school, showing an intense desire to become a showman and a stage performer when he grew up, estranging the relationship between his father to follow this dream. Like Homer, the decades of repeated humiliation, embarrassment and dejection from the audience he entertained, jades Krusty's enthusiasm over his career until it turned him into a complete charlatan. Off-stage, Krusty has shown to be a manic-depressive, alcoholic, chain-smoking gambler which he states he became to deal with the stress of his job. He inhales moon rocks just to get him to "normal" and once became addicted to Percadon (ironically the sponsor of his show at the time). Krusty's cynicism has shown him to be a good comedian at times due to his way of seeing things as they are and most of his adult-orientated humor is uncouth for his role as a kids television presenter but his sellout tendencies, difficulty in taking matters seriously and enjoyment of his fame keeps him in a job he really hates.
Krusty, throughout his career as a comedian, sold out and totally over-merchandised his name from his own fast food restaurant chain to toys, clocks, swabs, eye-dabbers, a clown school, Canyanero and Vodka rather than work on his own act. Because of this he often steals from other comedians, a line from Pardon My Zinger being one he took credit for and saved Saddam Hussain from being assassinated because he was "half [of Krusty's] act" in his comedy bit. His gambling issues have got him into trouble with the Mafia and close to bankruptcy; Krusty has literally burnt money to light a cigarette, once with a hundred dollar bill, a rare comic book and diamond pearls. Once, he left a live show and his audience waiting so he and Mel could see if their lottery tickets were winners and regularly gambles on sporting events, being in Moe's playbook who coordinates it, which is illegal.
He has a deep love for pornography, keeping twelve pounds of it in his house (which was all sold when he was being audited). Krusty can be regularly seen exiting a phonographic store and on one occasion an S&M store amongst Springfield's town residence, both times wearing a trench coat and sunglasses as to conceal his identity. He has been filed with so many sexual harassment lawsuits on his show and on-set that they barely permit him to have a female co-star or colleague. Krusty claims that in a strip club he is given rules on what to do and what not to, implying beforehand he did something so horrifically perverse that utterly surpasses even the boundaries on what is acceptable within a strip club that a rule was created for people to not ever cross the line that Krusty had crossed again.
One of his most notable traits would be his deep dislike for his fans. For him, speaking to the audience at his live show is "death" and he almost never signs his own autographs, once having Bart, who was his assistant at the time sign his own name for a crowd of fans, another time being Cletus' children and the one time he did sign an autograph himself, signed it "K the C" (which he justified by saying the pen he was using needed to last him all day). Ironically the one fan who interacts with Krusty the most, Bart Simpson who also saved him from jail, reunited him with his estranged father and helped him when his career was going nowhere, Krusty shows as much apathy for him as he does the rest of his fans, refusing to join Bart's family for dinner and even forgetting who he is without a reminder. He also has an unbridled hatred for his supervisors, Fox Television and interns, however, he has a notably closer, if still fairly antagonistic relationships with Sideshow Bob and Mel.
Krusty's father is Rabbi Hyman Krustofsky (who passed away in the first episode of Season 26), and his grandfather was Rabbi Zev Krustofsky. He also has an unnamed sister and a nephew named Josh. Through his mother, Rachel, Krusty is supposedly an older half-brother to actor Luke Perry, and Mia Farrow is his ex-lover. He has several illegitimate children, one of whom is named Sophie.
Krusty is known to be best friends with Sideshow Mel, but Sideshow Mel is really just Krusty's sidekick. Krusty's real best friend is known to be Mr. Teeny, his helper monkey. He also is friends with Sideshow Bob when he is out of jail, even though Bob tried to kill him. He also shares a relationship with Bart, who is Krusty's biggest fan and calls him his hero. But while Krusty is fond of Bart and will often help Bart when he can, Krusty almost never remembers who Bart is and requires his memory to be coaxed and often just calls him "kid" rather than taking the time to use his real name, despite the fact that Bart saved his life on one or more occasions.
Krusty has been married fifteen times. He usually gets married to his sideshows, including Eartha Kitt. He rejected Princess Penelope at their wedding in order to keep her from ruining her life as he usually got divorced shortly after. But he DID get back together with her. Krusty also had a child with a housemaid that said she was infertile. Krusty had a child named Sophie with Erin.
Despite his wealth, Krusty is frequently depressed when offstage; the contrast between these two personae is often used as a source of comedy by the writers. Krusty also exhibits laziness, irresponsibility, and promiscuity, amongst other negative traits. He smokes heavily and appears to have a low standard of health. He has a laughing problem, he can randomly laugh at moments.
Krusty revealed that he was illiterate during a court case after being framed for armed robbery by Sideshow Bob.. It is also revealed in Pulpit Friction he has vodka in his squirt flower and uses a monkey taser to train Mr. Teeny. He once committed tax fraud by placing some of his money in a secret account on the Cayman Islands. When he was accidentally exposed for it by Bart, he nearly lost everything. He deeply considered hitting Bart at the latter's request when he attempted to apologize, but chose against it, simply telling him to go home instead.
His illegitimate daughter Sophie was the result of a one-night stand between Krusty and a female soldier during the Gulf War. Now estranged, her mother has developed a bitter hatred of clowns and displays it with her choice of artwork (depicting violence being performed against clowns), this being because his actions caused her to fail in her mission. Krusty also implied when meeting Sophie and learning that she was the byproduct of a one-night stand during the Iraq War that, besides Sophie's mother, he also slept with an Israeli flight attendant as well as Cokie Roberts during the Iraq War. Krusty is said to have married fifteen different wives, with each wife leaving him. At one point he tried to pick up a girl at some point until he discovered that the chick was actually male, in which the morning after, he tries to get a friend to get him out of the relationship. At one point, he also proceeded to visit people who were undergoing medical surgeries and comfort them for reasons strongly implied to be due being sentenced in court to do so (his movements and sounds imply he had been sentenced due to a drunken hit and run). Outside of personal problems, he has also shown himself to have medical problems. As noted above, he once suffered a heart attack on the air. He was also implied to have had heart surgery from another relapse during the time New Springfield was being blacked out by Old Springfield. He also mentioned that he was diabetic once to his daughter. He also implied once that he has several organ problems, causing him to get worried when everyone decided to remove their organ donor stickers upon Bart's point after getting a drivers license at an early age due to saving Springfield from a fire. He also had a serious smoking addiction, to the extent that he had one nicotine patch on his arm, and eventually tried to lick it off, resulting in him having to cover himself with a lot of nicotine patches, of which the only part of his body that was available for new ones was his butt.
Krusty the Clown has aqua-green hair in three tufts on the sides and top of his head, as well as a white face (which was once revealed without makeup in "Krusty Gets Busted"). He also wears a light purple short-sleeved shirt and lime green clown pants with red clown shoes, a light blue bow-tie and white gloves.
He has the same face, and body and shape as Homer, which was frequently made light of in earlier episodes. When he was in court, he had his clown clothes removed to wear a prison uniform, his makeup was cleaned off, and his fake red nose was off, which reveals that he has the same face as Homer, except for his teal haircut. In later episodes, however, it is heavily implied that his "makeup" was actually pale skin that was created as a result of his heart attack.
In 2003, Krusty was elected to the United States House of Representatives as a Republican (though he once joked about voting for Bill Clinton in 1992 whilst campaigning for the GOP) after Bart suggested he run in order to stop Air Traffic problems over their house, and with some difficulty, and some underhanded tactics from the Simpson family with the help of a janitor, managed to get the bill passed. A year later, he served on a House committee to investigate Ziff Corp – run by Artie Ziff until he lost 98% of the company to Homer for corporate malfeasance (he ironically was a former tax-fraud). Apparently back in showbiz (despite having retired several times), he balances a political career with his local cable shenanigans.
Career in Media
After leaving New York, Krusty started his 50-year show-biz career as a street mime in Tupelo, Mississippi. He then appeared on a variety of Laugh-In-style variety shows, but in the 1950s was banned from television for ten years after saying "pants" on the air, which was not allowed at the time. In the 1960s he finally got his own television show, The Krusty the Clown Show, which featured Krusty discussing current events with serious guests (an episode of the show dated February 6, 1961, featured AFL-CIO president George Meany and a discussion of the "labor crisis in America")
In 1973, he performed a song of The Doors live in TV ("Break on Through (To the Other Side)"). The interview format got increasingly wacky, and by the 1980s the show had devolved into a children's entertainment show. He also briefly took up stand-up comedy, and during the Gulf War, he tried to entertain the soldiers (in a manner similar to Bob Hope) by making an off-color pun off of Saddam Hussein's name ("Saddam Hussein?! They should call him "So Damn Insane!!" Hahahaha!" "Hey, you're just fanning the flames of hatred!"), as well as having the Cincinnati Bengal Cheerleaders entertain the soldiers, which was controversial at best ("Hey, I can't watch this! I have a girlfriend at home!" "This is an insult to our Muslim hosts!"). However, the show was unexpectedly shut down due to a sandstorm, so he was forced to take refuge in a tent which coincidentally had a female soldier whom he later slept with. However, the night of passion quickly turned sour after he ruined her chance at assassinating Saddam Hussein (as well as destroying an entire shipment of Duff beer to the camp, due to his jumping on her and her bazooka's aim going awry as a result). As a result of the one-night stand, he became the father of Sophie.
Krusty quickly became a multimillionaire – mostly by mass-marketing his name and image to a variety of suspect products and services. In the Simpsons' world, there is everything from Krusty alarm clocks, to Krusty dolls, Krusty eye wash, and Krusty's Clown College (which Homer attended), many of which are owned by Bart. The more dangerous ones include: the Krusty home pregnancy test, which "may cause birth defects"; Krusty's brand of bubble gum, which contains spider eggs (which they knew about) and hantavirus (which they didn't know about); and Krusty's brand of cereal, which in one episode has a boast on the box first for a jagged metal Krusty-O in each box, and then flesh-eating bacteria in each box. Krusty seems also to be involved with the chemical industry; in one scene a railway tank car of Krusty brand sulfuric acid is shown. In addition, he also had a brand of Mayonnaise that ultimately ended up recalled for presumably health concerns, shortly after Krusty claimed it was safe, an event that Krusty apparently was still sore about as he called it "out of bounds" and immediately ended the "interview" with a swarm of news reporters after a similarly disastrous incident involving a massively overweight man getting trapped in the H-2-Whoa slide at Mt. Splashmore.
There is only one known lawsuit to date regarding these products, the time that Bart ate a jagged metal Krusty-O and had to have his appendix removed. However, it was suggested at the end of the episode that he would sue Krusty again after he ingested the flesh-eating bacteria that was put into the cereal (mostly to get back the $500 he spent to make Lisa feel better). At one time, he had his own brand of Pork Products. This might have led to his almost fatal on-the-air heart attack. He also has Kamp Krusty, which was a living hell for anybody who went there (it was later revealed that the only reason he signed off on the camp was because he had been bribed with "a dump truck full of money", and eventually regretted the decision). A list of Krusty-related products is attached at the end of this page. Krusty also operates his own television production company, Krustylu Productions (a pun on Lucille Ball and her husband Desi Arnaz's Desilu Productions).
Each Krusty product comes with his own seal of approval which he is 'supposed' to give after testing the product himself. Unfortunately for everyone who dares to buy any of his merchandise, Krusty endorses absolutely anything suggested to him immediately, and quality stamps shoddy products without even looking at them half the time. It's gotten to the point Krusty had to open the Klown Kollege because there was nothing else left for him to endorse.
His fame was also such that he was almost knighted by the Queen of England (the ceremony was interrupted with an urgent phone call that presumably notified him of the riot occurring at Kamp Krusty).
His show was canceled once after the debut of Gabbo the ventriloquist dummy, who was so popular, Krusty was driven out of business. Bart managed to get the Gabbo show cancelled in two ways: when he sneaked into the studio and switched on the camera during what was supposed to be a commercial break, revealing ventriloquist Arthur Crandall saying "All the children in Springfield are S.O.B.s" through Gabbo, and helping Krusty with creating a comeback special for Krusty was ultimately held (Parody of the Elvis comeback special), in which Krusty's many Hollywood friends bailed him out.
Krusty often retires from and then returns to showbiz throughout his career. One of his attempts was almost a permanent one because of recently paroled Sideshow Bob's latest scheme – wiring plastic explosives to a hypnotized Bart and sending him up on stage to kill Krusty. However, a last minute change of heart at Krusty's touching mention of him in a speech waylaid Bob's plan (as well as a last-minute rescue by Krusty's chain smoking chimp, Mr. Teeny).
Krusty even faked his own death to avoid the IRS. Taking the name Rory B. Bellows, he became a salvager of sunken ships.
Non Canon Appearances
In Future-Drama, at age 60, he dates Marge Simpson after she and Homer separate. He is beaten up by Homer after he finds out that he and Marge are dating. After the fight Marge dumps Krusty and gets back together with Homer.
In Holidays of Future Passed, at age 82, Bart Simpson tries to entertain his lovable (and sometimes disrespectful) boys but ends up embarrassing himself when he finds out Krusty The Clown is on a now grown up category saying boring things about his life.
Krusty appears as the Headless Horseman in the opening of Treehouse of Horror VI, throwing his head at the camera and making his trademark groan.
In the Treehouse of Horror XIX segment "How to Get Ahead in Dead-vertising," Krusty is the first celebrity murdered by Homer (albeit unintentionally) for a group of amoral ad men's purpose of using his likeness in commercials without having to pay royalties. Enraged, Krusty leads an army of dead celebrities from Heaven to take revenge on Homer and other Springfieldians, killing Homer with a shotgun blast to the head.
In the Treehouse of Horror XX segment "Don't Have a Cow, Mankind," Krusty was present at Krusty Burger for the unveiling of their new Burger², and explains the process of how it's made to Kent. Immediately after Kent becomes a "muncher", he bites Krusty in the arm, and while berating him for doing so, Krusty also transforms and attacks the cameraman.
The Simpsons Road Rage
Krusty is involved as one of the townspeople who is attempting to do a taxi service among members of the community in an attempt to buy back the public transit system from Mr. Burns after the latter converted it into a nuclear powered bus system. He also announces the player's current rating system after the player completes the level or loses the level (although the voice who says the title itself was actually Harry Shearer, in a monotonous voice, dubbing over the obviously pre-recorded message.) He is also an unlockable character with his clown car. In one of the game's missions, he tries to get tourists away from his house by knocking over the signs leading to it.
The Simpsons Hit and Run
Krusty the Clown advertised and endorsed Buzz Cola shortly after it hit the market. However, most other times, he was frequently depressed, and also had some disbelief in regards to Bart attempting to warn the townsfolk about an impeding Alien conspiracy.
The Simpsons Game
Rather ironically, Krusty appears in the level Mob Rules as one of the people Marge can use to protest the sales of the Grand Theft Scratchy videogame to minors. Mini-Krusties appear in Shadow of the Colossal Donut to attack Homer and Bart, spouting out various (and sometimes twisted) Krusty the Clown sound bites. Throughout the game Bart can collect Krusty coupons that he can use to win various Krusty-based trophies.
The Wettest Stories Ever Told
Krusty appears in the very last segment of this as one of the passengers on the maiden voyage of the S.S Neptune. He is among those killed when a tsunami capsizes the ship. He sits up with a pair of legs across him and exclaims angrily " Hey you schmuck, get off of me!", only to realize that it is his lower body as he has been cut in half. He laments going out "with a side gag" before dying.
Behind the Laughter
The character of Krusty was partially inspired by real-life clown "Rusty Nails" whom Simpsons creator Matt Groening watched as a child while growing up in Portland, Oregon. Some of his biographical details echo those of comedian Jackie Mason, who voices Krusty's father, including being the son of an orthodox rabbi, and being temporarily banned from television due to a controversial performance.
Krusty's appearance and design is basically just that of Homer Simpson with clown make-up. Groening said that "The satirical concept that I was going for at the time was that The Simpsons was about a kid who had no respect for his father, but worshiped a clown who looked exactly like his father," a theme which became less important as the show developed. One concept initially saw Krusty being revealed as Homer's secret identity but the idea was dropped for being too complex and because the writers were too busy developing the series. The idea of Homer as Krusty, however, was revisited in Homie the Clown, where Homer takes a job as a Krusty double, only to get abducted by Fat Tony, who mistakes Homer for Krusty partly due to the resemblance.
It has been stated by Groening that the voice of Krusty was based on the long-time Chicago version of Bozo played by Bob Bell.
- Krusty the Clown was originally intended to be Homer Simpson to create a problem between Bart's love for Krusty, and his dad (who he doesn't look up to at all). This was later scrapped to keep Krusty as a frequent character to the series.
- Krusty stated that he weighs almost 200 pounds in "Pranks and Greens," but he also has 30 pounds of makeup on, and he also carries heavy weapons.
- In "Colonel Homer," when Krusty was throttling Sideshow Mel, he shouted "I thought I told you to stay away from my sister!" Whether he was referring to Barbara Van Horne or someone else is never explained.
- A man who looked extremely like Krusty appeared in "Dead Putting Society". Although, this might be him, but the man was thinner.
- Apparently, Krusty refuses to acknowledge his Jewish heritage on the air, as evidenced when, during one of his episodes, he told off a chef guest star for mentioning that the recipe was his mother's matzoh brie.
- In "Today, I Am a Clown," Krusty purchases one of Santa's Little Helper's second litters of Greyhound Puppies.
- He has a cattle skull birthmark on top of his breast along with a superfluous nipple. This was seen in "Kamp Krusty." However, this is most likely a tattoo.
- In "We Put the Spring in Springfield," Krusty was apparently good friends with Chief Clancy Wiggum, Principal Seymour Skinner and Mayor Joe Quimby, as they are seen reminiscing about their very first visit to La Maison Derrière and Mayor Quimby commenting on the service.
- It is shown that Krusty got Mr. Teeny because his previous monkey assistant would beat him up a lot.
- Krusty once said that he can't swim, though in Bart the Fink, he is shown swimming as he jumps from the boat.
- In Krusty Gets Busted, it is revealed Krusty has a rival clown called Hobo Hank.
- In Once Upon a Time in Springfield, Krusty mentioned that he had died once on the operating table.
- Krusty is a republican.
- In "Clown in the Dumps", the last thing Krusty ever heard his dad say was "EH".
- In "Mr. Spritz Goes to Washington", he mentions that he owns a dog however it has yet to appear in any episodes.
- ↑ "Bart the Fink"
- ↑ "Lisa's Sax"
- ↑ Clown in the Dumps
- ↑ Today, I Am a Clown
- ↑ Bart the Fink
- ↑ Like Father, Like Clown
- ↑ The Heartbroke Kid
- ↑ The Sweetest Apu
- ↑ Bart's Inner Child
- ↑ Krusty Gets Busted
- ↑ Once Upon a Time in Springfield
- ↑ Make Room for Lisa Krusty: (over Baby Monitor) Hey, it's Krusty. I need you to get me out of another jam. (scene cuts to a desert with Krusty on a cell phone while wearing nothing but a towel) I picked up this chick last night. ...At least, I thought she was a chick. (Car passes by and honks horn).
- ↑ Homer's Triple Bypass
- ↑ A Tale of Two Springfields
- ↑ Insane Clown Poppy
- ↑ Little Big Girl
- ↑ The Front
| Krusty the Clown | Sideshow Bob | Sideshow Mel | Sophie Krustofsky | Mr. Teeny|
Krusty Burger | Clown College | Kamp Krusty