Van Houten family

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The Van Houten family (pronounced /væn ˈhaʊtən/ van-HOW-tən) is a family in the animated television series The Simpsons. The nuclear family consists of Bart and Lisa Simpson's friend Milhouse and his parents, father Kirk and mother Luann. Of the three, Milhouse has the largest role within the show. All three look alike: cobalt blue hair, red glasses, and giant, softball-sized noses, similar to earlier characters Akbar and Jeff from Matt Groening's Life in Hell comic strip. They are some of the few regular characters with eyebrows (though Luann's are revealed to be fake). The Van Houtens divorced in the eighth-season episode "A Milhouse Divided", but remarried in the nineteenth season episode "Little Orphan Millie".

Contents

Nuclear family

Kirk

Kirk Van Houten (sometimes called Milhouse's Dad) is voiced by Hank Azaria. He is the father of Milhouse, and the remarried husband of Luann. He first appeared in Bart's Friend Falls in Love. Hank Azaria based Kirk's voice on his impression of Milhouse.[citation needed]

Kirk has been portrayed as a stereotypical middle-aged male loser and deadbeat dad. Much of Mr. Van Houten's character revolves around his extreme emotional depression after his divorce from his wife Luann. Luann got custody of Milhouse when they divorced, but Kirk has visiting rights and is often seen with Milhouse in later episodes. Much to his displeasure, Milhouse often addresses him as "Weekend Dad". Kirk suffers from the need to cry all the time after his divorce, even in good times. The episode "Little Orphan Millie" established that Kirk is of Dutch and Danish ancestry. Kirk previously served in the U.S. Army, and attended Gudger College. Apparently Kirk's mother is of Greek ancestry, based on the nineteenth season episode "Husbands and Knives". In the episode, Milhouse says, "But that's the money Yaya Sophia gave me for Greek Orthodox Easter!".

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