Jessica Lovejoy is the daughter of Reverend Lovejoy
and Helen Lovejoy
. To date she has had a speaking "role" on The Simpsons
only once, in the episode entitled Bart's Girlfriend
. She is also seen (with her father) in the episode where Homer and Bart have battle robots, but she does not speak.
Jessica's absence from the rest of the series was explained by her being away at boarding school. During this one episode she returned home and met Bart, who became smitten with her. Convinced that she embraced the same ideals as her father, Bart attempted to create the illusion that he was actually a nice boy. While at the Lovejoy home for dinner, however, Bart makes a mess of things and Jessica discovers his true nature. To his surprise, she finds his rebellious ways endearing and they spend more time together.
One week while at church, Jessica steals money from the church collection plate and leaves it in Bart's lap to be found. Most of the community agrees that Bart, having been a troublemaker in the past, must have stolen the money and a good deal of persecution takes place. As a preventative measure, Bart is only allowed back in the church in a Silence of the Lambs-esque restraining device. His family - especially Marge and Lisa believe his pleas of innocence, however, and Lisa accuses Jessica of the crime in front of the entire congregation, challenging the community to search her room.
The collection money is found under Jessica's mattress. Reverend Lovejoy insists that Bart has put it there to frame her, indicating his unwillingness to accept Jessica's faults. Perhaps seeking attention, Jessica confesses that she has taken the money and alludes to similar incidents in the past. She also reveals that she was expelled from boarding school, not home on vacation.
Jessica had a very developed (yet skewed) awareness of social structure and knew that people were more apt to believe her than Bart. Though she was supposed to clean the church stairs as a punishment for her misdeeds, Jessica got Bart to do it instead. She cited her ability to make men do whatever she wanted to do as she walked off with another boy, but Bart got the last laugh by doing a second-rate job of cleaning the steps.
Jessica Lovejoy was voiced by Meryl Streep, who once said that she considered doing a voice-over on the Simpsons a career highlight.