Shelbyville is a fictional town on The Simpsons, the neighboring city to our beloved Springfield. Its chiefly known as being a direct rival of Springfield, and the two towns are constantly at odds to one-up each other (or, more commonly, to destroy the other in order to make themselves look better.)
The town was named for its founder, Shelbyville Manhattan, who abandoned Jebediah Springfield's settling party when he learned that there were no imminent plans to allow its citizens to marry their cousins. By Abe Simpson's account, the town was for a time named Morganville - but then again he says a lot of things.
The town pops up in passing reference now and again, but was featured most prominently in the classic season 6 episode "Lemon of Troy." In the episode, the town's rivalry comes to a head when some Shelbyville hoodlums make off with Springfield's prized lemon tree. Bart, Milhouse, and company then head into enemy territory to retrieve the lemon tree, which eventually results in a daring raid on and escape from an impound lot by Homer and Ned Flanders.
In this episode, a number of things about Shelbyville are revealed:
- Rather than a lemon tree, they have a prized turnip tree and drink turnip juice.
- They have some disturbing analogues to Springfield, including a bar called Joe's, a beer called Fudd, a Speed-E-Mart run by a foreigner, and a Scottish school groundskeeper (albeit female.)
- Additionally, they have a blue-haired boy named Milhouse, and a town rascal in an orange shirt with an oafish father in a white shirt.
Later episodes have only mounted on to this strange and seemingly pointless rivalry, from Springfield buying the monorail out of fear that Shelbyville might beat them to it, to the Springfield citizens sighing with relief when they learn a recent nuclear bomb only destroyed Shelbyville.