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The story behind Maggie’s original price tag in ‘The Simpsons’ opening credits

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It’s a detail many fans of “The Simpsons” have taken for granted.

Ever wonder why Maggie gets scanned on a grocery store conveyer during the intro sequence?

When the iconic cartoon debuted in 1989, the youngest Simpson rang up at $847.63.

According to UberFacts on Twitter, the seemingly arbitrary number actually represents the estimated cost of raising a baby for one month that year, more than three decades ago.

Throughout the show’s historic 33 seasons, writers have had fun with the opening credits.

During a satirical trivia bit before a commercial break in season 7 episode 10, a narrator begins to explain Maggie’s price tag, but zags to claim that the register actually reads “NRA4EVER,” sarcastically implying that the show’s notably liberal creator Matt Groening supports the National Rifle Association.

And in the Treehouse of Horror XXIV episode, Maggie’s price tag gets a satanic twist as it reads “666.”

These days, the price for one Maggie Simpson is evidently $243.26.

In 2009, the sitcom updated its opening sequence and tweaked the scanner joke. In its current iteration, the register reads $243.26 until Maggie is scanned, at which point the ticker doubles to $486.52.

Groening has never answered for this, but it suggests that having a kid can double your living expenses.

“The Simpsons” returns to Fox for Season 34 on September 25 at 8 p.m. EST. It has already been renewed for Season 35, bringing the show into 2023. And who knows what Maggie might cost then.

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