- "This is Kent Brockman on a crisis so serious it has its own name and theme music, 'Trappuccino'."
- ―Kent Brockman[src]
Trappuccino is the popular term for the crisis where a dome was placed over the city of Springfield by Russ Cargill and the Environmental Protection Agency. It was one of the worst moments in the history of Springfield and lasted for over 93 days. The crisis was given the name Trappuccino by Channel 6 News.
After cracks started appearing in the dome, Cargill launched "Operation Soaring Eagle", the goal of which was to blow up Springfield. However, his plan was thwarted by Homer Simpson, and the dome was destroyed by the very bomb that Cargill had ordered dropped to blow up Springfield. Afterwards, the situation in Springfield slowly returned to normal.
Lake Springfield had become a source of pollution, being the dumping site for everything from empty beer bottles to radioactive waste from the Nuclear Power Plant. It was so polluted that it killed the band Green Day while they were playing a concert on the lake. The barge they were using as a stage dissolved, and the band drowned when they fell into the water.
Lisa Simpson and Colin found out about the extent of the pollution in the lake, and urged the people of Springfield to clean up the lake during a presentation at town hall, named "An Irritating Truth". To convince the audience further, Lisa placed water from the lake into their drinking glasses. The tactic paid off, and Mayor Quimby raised the town's alert level to "Code Black", the town's highest alert level.
The town then proceeded to clean up the lake. Mayor Quimby led the construction of a shoulder-level concrete wall, which was presumably "idiot-proof.", Cletus could not dump anything (a rat) in it. The lake was surrounded by "No Dumping" signs and all hazardous waste could only be disposed at a waste disposal plant.
Turn of events
Some time after the clean up, Lard Lad Donuts was being shut down by health inspectors, and the donut shop was giving away free donuts. Unfortunately, this proved to be a distraction for resident Homer J. Simpson, who was waiting behind a long line of cars at the waste disposal plant to dispose of a large silo of "pig crap," filled with the leavings of his newly adopted pig Plopper. Unable to wait any longer for a chance at free donuts, Homer went off to dispose of the silo quickly by dumping the waste into the lake. Ignoring the warning signs, he crashed through the concrete barrier and dumped the silo into the water, which instantly polluted the entire lake, just days after it had been cleaned up.
Homer and Plopper quickly fled the scene, while at the same time, a squirrel fell into the water and was instantly mutated into a multi-eyed creature. The creature was later captured by the Environmental Protection Agency, and went into the possession of Russ Cargill, head of the EPA. He showed President Arnold Schwarzenegger the abomination of nature and expressed how high the pollution in Springfield has become. Russ Cargill presented the President 5 options on how to deal with the town. He picked Option 3 without even reading it.
Option 3 was to trap the entire town of Springfield under a thick glass dome in order to prevent the pollution from spreading. (Incidentally, Russ Cargill was also the owner of the company that made the dome.) The dome was carried by over a hundred helicopters, attaching ropes with large suction cups to the dome. The inhabitants of the entire town witnessed the dome casting a shadow over Springfield. The dome was soon lowered, covering the entire perimeter of Springfield and crushing the "L" on the "Springfield" hills, causing the "P" and "F" to bend and at least one person was flattened and killed when the dome was lowered.
After the dome was lowered
The Springfield Police Department attempted to crack the dome by shooting at it, but instead the bullets ricocheted back towards them. Professor Frink announced that he had created an drill that could drill through anything, but unfortunately, it was right outside the dome. Soon after, Russ Cargill appeared on a giant screen on the dome, explaining to the Springfieldians that in order to keep pollution from spreading into other areas, the United States government was forced to trap the entire town inside a dome. When Lisa Simpson exclaims to him that they just cleaned up the lake, Russ Cargill simply retorted that "someone didn't get the message".
To keep anyone from finding Springfield, Springfield was removed from the official state maps and wiped out from GPS devices.
The town soon faced the beginning of a long range of problems such as the shortage of supplies like botox and gasoline, and there was a grab for supplies. The dome also prevented swallows from returning to Springfield for the springtime.
Sometime later, the Springfield Police Department discovered a large silo with the words "pig crap" written on it, plus the message "If found, please return to Homer Simpson. No reward." The culprit behind the pollution of Lake Springfield was revealed, and Channel 6 news called for vigilante justice against Homer Simpson. A massive angry mob converged on 742 Evergreen Terrace, home of Homer Simpson and family, bent on killing Homer for polluting the Lake and causing the EPA to contain Springfield within the dome. The Simpsons ultimately escaped by jumping into a sinkhole in their backyard that brought them outside the dome, but the sinkhole later expanded, destroying their house.
As weeks passed, the situation got worse in Springfield. Around Day 37, intermediate power failures started plaguing the town (as the Nuclear Power Plant was presumably shut down or operating at extremely limited capacity) and the residents started looting buildings including Moe's Tavern. Eventually, the power completely fails, with the exception of Burns Manor. Despite the pleas of Dr. Hibbert, Chief Wiggum and Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Mr. Burns refused to supply the town with his reserve power due to Apu foolishly telling Mr. Burns that he should find what's right in his heart.
By Day 93, the residents of Springfield finally reached the breaking point. After a book thrown by Lindsay Naegle spilled coffee from a coffee machine at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, Barney finally cracked, ran out to the dome, and attempted to break the dome. The rest of the townspeople soon followed, trying to crack the dome repeatedly with objects such as Boxing Gloves, Jackhammers, Battering Rams, Bubbles (Ralph Wiggum), Swordfish, Sticks, and Shovels (ironic, since the townspeople could've dug themselves out in the first place). Stampy the elephant struck the dome with his head, and managed to form a small crack on the dome.
Russ Cargill and the president witnessed this from a surveillance camera. Convincing the president that a breakout from the dome would expose a government conspiracy and start a federal investigation, Russ Cargill once again gave the president 5 options, but this time, he manipulated the president to pick Option 4: Blow Up Springfield.
Operation Soaring Eagle
The government passed off the upcoming destruction of Springfield as the creation of a "new Grand Canyon," and released a commercial promoting it, featuring Tom Hanks. The commercial described the new Grand Canyon to be located "East of Shelbyville and South of Capital City," the very location of Springfield. They went to describe it as nowhere near where anything is. The Simpsons family was soon found and captured by the EPA, thanks to a nationwide surveillance program that involved tapping into people's conversations. Homer Simpson wasn't captured, as he had left the family. The family was placed back into the Dome. By the time this happened, Springfield was in a state of near ruin. Many of its buildings had collapsed, including the Town Hall and excluding Springfield Elementary. Moe Syzlak had become the self-proclaimed "Emperor of Springfield" (by the time Soaring Eagle came into effect, he had at least one follower, Barney Gumble). Mr. Burns' Estate was looted and Mr. Burns was stripped of his wealth, with Mr. Burns even hinting that he'd watch Smithers try to commit suicide to focus on something other than his current predicament. Right after the Simpsons returned to Springfield, Russ Cargill appeared on the television screen on the dome once again, telling the Springfieldians that the United States government's decision to trap the town inside the Dome was a mistake, and the government had commenced "Operation Soaring Eagle", which involved wiping out the entire town. A bomb hoisted onto a rope from a helicopter was lowered from a hole at the top of the Dome, with a timer set to 15 minutes. After several failed attempts at stopping the bomb (namely, using a bomb disposal robot to cut the wire, only for it to panic, grab an officer's gun, and shoot itself in the head) The townspeople decided to climb the rope and escape through the top of the Dome, while Cletus distracted Russ Cargill. However, Homer came down the rope at the same after climbing up the Dome, knocking everyone off the rope. His act also caused the bomb to drop, making the timer freeze. Unfortunately, Homer kicked the bomb out of frustration after he discovers that he actually ruined it for everyone, which not only reactivated the timer, but also halved the time to four minutes.
While moping, he bumps into the tree and is implied to be talking to the Boob Lady, who points out that he could use the Motorcycle and the stunt he used earlier to get the bomb out of the town. Deciding that he had to save the town, Homer "payed" the Boob Lady for her services (by placing it in the Tree Trunk), took the bomb and attempted to ride a motorcycle up the side of the dome (like in a motorcycle stunt cage). He took his son Bart Simpson, who helped him hold the bomb. At the moment they made it to the top, Bart threw the bomb out of the hole, ten seconds before detonation. After nearly falling back into the hole, the bomb safely flipped its end onto the dome, and caused a massive explosion on the side of the Dome with a force that stripped the leaves off the nearby pine forests. The explosion caused the dome to shatter into pieces, mostly tiny and harmless except for an large one that crushed Dr. Nick, one of the few casualties of the Trappuccino incident. Homer and Bart landed safely near Springfield Gorge, only to be confronted by Russ Cargill, who attempted to kill them after refusing to admit defeat. Before he could fire, he was knocked out by a boulder rolled down on him by Maggie, whom Homer then thanked by remarking that she turned out to be "a great little accident".
Homer Simpson was hailed as a hero, being the man who was both the direct cause of the "Dome incident" and responsible for its end. The town of Springfield was repaired and rebuilt, and the status quo returned once again. For attempting to blow up Springfield, Russ Cargill is fired his job as EPA administrator and sent to prison.
Sometime after the end of Trappuccino and after the town was restored, Charles Montgomery Burns attempted to seal Springfield in dome yet again in retaliation for being humiliated by the townspeople. However, he backed down after the townspeople remarked that it was done before, and Lou noted that they could always dig themselves out (which never occurred to anyone during Trappuccino).
- It is unknown why the residents of Springfield never bothered to dig a hole to get out of the dome, but a common idea is that they were not thinking through logic, but through force. This has been joked upon by the producers, who had created the characters to be dull and oblivious to their surroundings and situations.
- This may have been due to the armed guards surrounding the dome to prevent anyone escaping.
- – The Simpsons Movie
- Episode – "He Loves to Fly and He D'ohs" (Opening Sequence)
- Episode – "The Fool Monty" (Referenced)