The Simpsons Folder
Judge in Favor of Homer’s Beer
May 17, 1996 © Las Vegas Sun, Inc. SYDNEY, Australia (Associated Press)
Raise a glass to Homer Simpson. His favorite beer has had its day in court, and won.
A judge ordered an Australian brewer today to stop selling a beer called “Duff,” after the makers of “The Simpsons” complained the name was stolen from their cartoon series.
Judge Brian Tamberlin ruled that Lion Nathan Australia and its subsidiary, South Australian Brewing Co., had illegally tried to “exploit a strong association” with “The Simpsons” by making and selling Duff Beer.
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., the series’ parent company, hauled the brewers before the federal court last month.
The trial consisted in part of the judge watching several episodes of “The Simpsons,” and examining a can of the Australian-made Duff.
Duff Beer went on the Australian market in 1995. Homer Simpson began chugging a fictional brew by the same name in 1990 when the phenomenally popular show began.
“The name was inspired by all the single-syllable beer names in the United States, like Hamms, Bud, Schlitz,” cartoon creator Matt Groenig recently told Australia’s “Who Weekly” magazine. “And we thought it was a funny name.”
Lawyers for the brewer said that while some might associate the name with The Simpsons, Duff also has other meanings – for instance, “duffer,” a plodding, stupid, incompetent person.