Long-running TV comedy show The Simpsons has revealed that the character of Duffman is gay.

The revelation comes in the latest episode of the programme, now in its 20th series.

Sweet Conclusions follows Homer as he sets up a business breaking up with people on behalf of his clients.

The episode marks the return of two gay men that Homer once shared a flat with during a short break from Marge, Grady and Julio.

“When Grady calls Homer to book his breakup services, he mentions that he’s dating someone new just as Duffman steps out of the shower and playfully snaps his towel at Grady,” reports AfterElton.com.

“Considering how Duffman parodies the way beer marketing is often drenched in machismo, seeing him in a relationship with Grady strikes me as very subversive.”

Duffman is a spokesperson for Duff beer, and his catchphrase “Ooh Yeah!” is a favourite with fans.

The character is based on Budweiser’s former mascot Bud Man.

The Simpsons has sympathetically tackled gay marriage in an episode that revealed that Marge Simpson’s sister Patty is a lesbian.

The character of Waylon Smithers has been a source of much comedy over the years, as he is clearly gay and in love with his boss, evil nuclear plant owner Montgomery Burns.

However, the latest Halloween special angered the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) after school bully Nelson Muntz used the phrase “that’s so gay” to character Milhouse Van Houten.

GLSEN wants the show’s producers to promise not to use the phrase again.

“Nelson’s use of ‘that’s so gay’ in a negative way is not surprising considering that 90% of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth say they hear the term used this way frequently or often at school.” the group said.