• Welcome to Talking Time's third iteration! If you would like to register for an account, or have already registered but have not yet been confirmed, please read the following:

    1. The CAPTCHA key's answer is "Percy"
    2. Once you've completed the registration process please email us from the email you used for registration at percyreghelper@gmail.com and include the username you used for registration

    Once you have completed these steps, Moderation Staff will be able to get your account approved.

  • TT staff acknowledge that there is a backlog of new accounts that await confirmation.

    Unfortunately, we are putting new registrations on hold for a short time.

    We do not expect this delay to extend beyond the first of November 2020, and we ask you for your patience in this matter.

    ~TT Moderation Staff

America's Favorite Non-prehistoric Cartoon Family - The Simpsons Thread

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
These are all from seasons 10 through 13! I've just never noticed how often they went back to this well before (possibly because the joke isn't very good).
I'm not going to lie, I kind of low-key like it. Like, it doesn't make me laugh but as some weird texture it works for me. That said, the Showgirls one DOES make me laugh as I get the impression the movie theatre he went to slapped that shit together, as opposed to the other ones where Homer may have made them.
 

MetManMas

Me and My Bestie
(He, him)
Honestly I feel like the gag peaked at the crappy DIY pennant Homer put together for School on the spot. There's no topping that one.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Bart to the Future

I always get a little self-conscious when thinking about my career in comparison to my sister. I've done a lot to be proud of but I've never laid strong roots and feel like despite all of my accumulated experience that I'm starting from square one. My sister has a partner and children and a nice house and everything I probably won't get. I know I shouldn't bother comparing and accept myself as I am but I definitely am jealous of my sister's go-getter attitude while it is easy for me to just be comfortable with whatever. I just lack her ambition and just want to do a good job and relax at the end of the day. Its not so much jealousy but rather disappointment in myself that I just don't have that professional edge.

In this episode, Bart gets a vision from an indigenous mystic about the future. In it, he is a loser would be musician who just mooches off his folks and friends and holds onto unrealistic dreams. When Lisa, now president, moves into the White House, Bart decides to crash there but proves to be an embarrassment. After Bart ruins an attempt to sell America a big tax hike, Lisa gets him out of the way on a phoney assignment at Camp David. When Bart realizes what Lisa is doing, Bart finally feels a measure of shame and comes to her rescue by stalling America's debtors with lame excuses.

Where do we want to leave our characters when we finally part ways. Some we never will. Grant Morrison turned the idea that there will always be new Batman stories into a tragic bleak existential nightmare at the end of his run on the book. On the other hand, Adventure Time did two finales that left our characters and both of them managed to be pretty good, one leaving them as their lives go on and the other exploring their epilogue in the afterlife. But endings, even "pretend" ones, are powerful ideas, as well as seeing our favourite characters after the years pass. For the Simpsons, Lisa's Wedding is a strong episode that feels like a great future for the series. Homer and Marge are kind of in the same place, Lisa is the success we would assume and Bart finds himself in a place that has some sadness but overall seems happy and fulfilled.

Bart to the Future is... not as good. Its fairly weak. The main thrust is actually an interesting one: Bart having to measure himself against his sister's success and finding himself wanting. After all, we can't imagine a future were Lisa isn't a success but Bart's future is always in question. He has his own innate talents such as savviness and guile but also lacks the kind of drive that society expects from him. He almost certainly won't go to university. But there are other yardsticks for success and fulfillment. But that's not what the episode is about. The episode is about Bart having to admit he's a big fucking loser and gets one minor win. I don't think I need a future episode to be exclusively uplifting but here it assumes Bart's just going to suck and, like several episodes this season, there's very little insight. It actually sort of touches on the idea of different measurements for success in the last joke but I don't think it believes it. It sees future Bart as a loser and gives him a minor gesture at some vague redeeming quality.

There are so many episodes I feel like the seed of the episode is much more interesting than the episode itself. It certainly doesn't help that it is quite racist. Yeah, there's the framing device of the "Indian casino" but even beyond that there are weird jokes about de-segregating death sports (which feels like a lot to unpack) and Hank Azaria doing a wacky Chinese accent. Yeesh. So that certainly went into colouring my opinion of the episode. But one of my other problems is that I feel like that while the Simpsons of the Golden Age was cynical about society, authority and conformity, it cared about its individual characters. But I don't feel like it cares about this Bart at all. Its not just that it starts him in a low place, socially and personally. A lot of great stories set in the future can do that with our heroes. I don't even think this is the worst starting point for the character (though him being a low-rent Jimmy Buffett makes no fucking sense to me. I get people's tastes change but I can't imagine a world where Bart gets into Buffett), Its just that his journey is just people pointing out he sucks, Bart agreeing, then helping Lisa in a small way. I think the show could have expanded on the idea at the end that what was supposed to be a cautionary tale simply wouldn't work on Bart because how he judges himself might not conform to societal expectations.

This episode isn't doing the worst stuff these future episodes do. I blame them for trying to make Lisa/Milhouse a thing. But its a shame that it feels like the writers at this point are forgetting the joy of Bart. He's a kid with a spark. The very thing that causes him to misbehave also has value. He's a little more clearly flawed than Lisa and makes bigger mistakes but Bart episodes are about how he deals with them and showing us his value there. But here, he has little to offer. Just excuses.

Jokes I missed before:

I missed that the woman who couldn't find her hat on her head was supposed to be Helen Thomas.

Other great jokes:

I feel like there are episodes I disliked more with more jokes I liked. Weird.

I like Marge walking around the White House with the laundry, telling Lisa to be nice to her brother.

"You've changed Lisa. You used to be cool."
"No, I didn't,"

I also like Homer's arbitrary counting method for gold finding.

"Now, this play button's a little screwed up so you got to hold it down."

"Every president gets three secret murders. If you don't use them by the end of their presidency, they're gone."

"Can we skinny dip?"
"At Camp David? Sure. They couldn't keep pants off Kissinger."



Other notes:

I like the implication that Arthur Crandall has a less scary version of Anthony Hopkins' Magic/The Ventriloquist and Scarface-thing going on.

I kind of like that Ralph is less implied to be intellectually disabled this episode. Like, he's still dumb but he's slightly less of an empty cipher/joke machine.

Yeah, yeah, this is the one that predicted "President Trump". I kind of don't care.

I can't imagine even future Bart recognizing Billy Carter on sight.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
My headcanon is that this business is what drives Bart to go to Law School and begin his rise to the Supreme Court.
 

MetManMas

Me and My Bestie
(He, him)
I don't ever buy this "Show Predicted X" rubbish. They had the orange demon having been in power on The Simpsons 'cuz he was running for office in what people (correctly) figured out was a publicity stunt at the time. That is all.

I mean, a kaiju-sized Cookie Monster took some bites out of the Twin Towers on a magazine cover but that doesn't mean Sesame Street predicted 9/11. Everybody was destroying the World Trade Center in media before it got actually destroyed in a real life terrorist attack.
 

Büge

Arm Candy
(she/her)
I mean, a kaiju-sized Cookie Monster took some bites out of the Twin Towers on a magazine cover but that doesn't mean Sesame Street predicted 9/11. Everybody was destroying the World Trade Center in media before it got actually destroyed in a real life terrorist attack.
 

yama

the room is full of ghosts
My headcanon is that this business is what drives Bart to go to Law School and begin his rise to the Supreme Court.

I thought the opposite, this is Bart's post-Law School burnout.
 

Tegan

dirtbag lesbian
(She/Her)
It's sad to me that Bart is always a deadbeat in the future. Bart is an extremely clever, creative kid who's just trapped in an environment that doesn't appreciate him. He's just as talented as Lisa, but in a way that those around him want to actively stifle and not just ignore. Knowing that he never found a productive outlet in any of the many future timelines the show has done is deeply depressing.
 
Last edited:

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Yeah, but being a Supreme Court Justice doesn't seem that great anymore. Based on Bart to the Future, he's more like Bart Kavanaugh. The worst timeline.
 
I was thinking about Marge vs. The Monorail, because it's a really good episode and why wouldn't you do that? But they sneak a little gem into the Monorail Man's sales pitch to Springfield. He wins over everyone in the audience but Marge (who has common sense but nobody listens to anyway) and Lisa.

Lisa is really the only person who has any chance of saving the town from the grifter's wild scheme. He senses this and lays his cards on the table, basically telling her that HE knows it's a sham, and SHE knows it's a sham, but she's the only person in the town who's smart enough to know it. She eats up the praise and lets him continue unimpeded.

It's a rare glimpse of the kind of person Lisa really is, when you get past the moralizing and the intellectual posturing. She's so desperate for recognition and validation that she's willing to let some pretty terrible things get swept under the rug to get it.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
That's... a VERY cynical take on the character and I seriously cannot buy into it. Yes, she can be manipulated through her hunger for recognition and be forced even to hesitate in moral dilemmas but I seriously don't buy that Lisa is a secret amoral monster that this interpretation assumes. This scene is about how even a smart person can be tricked with charm and savvy.
 

MetManMas

Me and My Bestie
(He, him)
It's easy to forget 'cuz of how grown up Lisa acts a lot of the time but she is still only eight years old.
 
That's... a VERY cynical take on the character and I seriously cannot buy into it. Yes, she can be manipulated through her hunger for recognition and be forced even to hesitate in moral dilemmas but I seriously don't buy that Lisa is a secret amoral monster that this interpretation assumes. This scene is about how even a smart person can be tricked with charm and savvy.
Well, she did have a fantasy about making her brother grovel at her feet, then impaling him with her Nobel Peace Prize.

I'll admit, I don't like the character. There are some moments where I can appreciate her (Summer of Four Foot Two in particular) but for the most part I share Flanders' long concealed opinion that she's "Springfield's answer to a question nobody asked."

I might be able to empathize a little more with Lisa if she were more openly flawed or challenged, rather than consistently being the show's infallible voice of reason. Nobody likes a know-it-all. It's why when Jay Sherman from The Critic spouts off some pretentious, intellectual drivel, the writers go to great lengths to humiliate him shortly afterward. They DIDN'T do this in his Simpsons crossover, and it tarnished an otherwise good episode. ("Camus can do, but Sartre is smartre?" Oh lord, give me a break.)

Conversely, it would be nice if some of the other characters were less flawed, or at least had their flaws less exaggerated. Homer had his moments of compassion despite being an id-driven dope, like sacrificing his ride on a beer blimp to make his daughter feel pretty, but now he just seems maliciously stupid. I could have punched his dumb ass when he made his father's kidneys explode, then refused to share one of his own organs and fix the problem that HE needlessly created. Was this one of the episodes from the bad half of the series' run? It sure feels like it.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
The Days of Wine and D'oh'ses

I'm glad I don't drink very often. I suspect that I don't have something in me that would make me an alcoholic. Food enough is a powerful vice to overcome, I can't imagine something like alcohol, which is a depressant. I'm already a bit of a disorganized mess as it is. I have a friend who I feel is an alcoholic. I have only seen him once or twice since the beginning of the pandemic and I worry about him quite often. I don't see him doing anything overtly or obviously self-destruction but a lot of our get togethers are liquor fueled and I worry that it has a subtler, long term effect on him, particularly in terms of his mental health, as his work seems to isolate him. I hope he is doing well. I'll be seeing him again later this year and I hope he is doing OK when I see him.

In this episode, Barney laments everyone missed his birthday, only to learn that he was at a big birthday bash at the Simpsons that he forgot. Watching himself drunk, he is filled with shame and realizes his closest friends laugh at his patheticness. Barney takes his gift from Moe, a coupon for helicopter lessons, and vows to use it and get sober. Homer helps him but eventually the two hit a schism when Homer feels like Barney is looking down on his time with Homer. When Bart and Lisa accidentally cause a forest fire, Homer needs Barney to save the kids. Homer keeps Barney from getting drunk and together they save the kids.

I feel like after a swath of episodes that have eschewed character in favour of yuks, many of which are pretty fucking questionable. So The Days of Wine and D'oh'ses is a big relief. It is an episode written by Dan Castellaneta and his wife, writer and comedian Deb Lacusta and I actually feel this is one of the episodes stronger episodes. There are bigger laughs in others but with the series becoming broader in place of sensible story construction and character, this one actually feels like pretty solid ground.

It helps that I like taking a look at characters and thinking of the bigger picture of a comedic trait. And Barney's, being drunk, is actually pretty sad. This has definitely been addressed before, particularly in the Critic crossover episode, where the laughs are about undercutting genuine poetry and pathos with humour. But this is an episode that looks to actually tackle it and I actually think it does it well. I don't know that much about recovery but I definitely buy that Homer, used to his friend being a drinking buddy, would find himself feeling like he's losing a friend. I like that even though its a comedy and the show is still playing with the "funny drunk" trope, that it takes Barney beginning the road to recovery seriously. I mean, even 6 years earlier, MST3k was doing a sketch about how the "funny drunk" doesn't seem fun anymore and Joel was still willing to whip out a "Asian" voice at the time. It's not a perfect episode, I think it lacks a big laugh moment or bit to really elevate it, but with so many flimsier ones through out, I find this one effective.

I'm actually surprised to see on wikipedia how many people, from critics to writers, just prefer Barney drunk. And eventually he would be again. But isn't that just... so fucking sad. That he's not allowed to have a measure of happiness because his lack of funny pain is making him less fun. Frankly, I'm OK with it. Maybe just write him out. Heck, I think this is the last time Barney's particularly relevant anyway, as Lenny and Carl really take over Barney's spot. Let him fade into the background with Ruth Powers and the other kids who transferred to Springfield Elementary who don't talk any more. If the natural end point of this evolution is moving beyond relevance, I'd kind of prefer that to the show kicking him around for kicks. Because that's kind of a bummer.

Other great jokes:

"Hey Barney, what's with the glum face? You glum or something? Huh, glummy?"

"Marge, you're making a complete fool of yourse-- Oh, wait, it's just Barney."


I love the banality of the chopper pilot's conversation (even when talking about some guy's brutal death). Also, after the Muppet Show, I also have an appreciation for Leo Sayer.

"Oh, Bart. the bulldog didn't ante."

"I broke barstools, befouled your broom closet, then made sweet love to your pool table, which I then befouled."
"That explains the drop off and play."

"I play Jerry "Fireball" Mudflap, a feisty Supreme Court justice searching for his birth mother while competing in a cross-country fire truck race. It's garbage."
I love that even the title, which sounds like a buddy comedy, it misleading.

"You did it, dad!"
"You can't prove I did it!"
"No, you saved our lives."
"I could do a lot of things if I had some money."

Other notes:

She-Hulk's hair is the wrong colour. I really hope someone got fired for that one.

The AA/AAA joke is VERY Dad joke cheeseball.

Best throwaway Simpsons character to put in AA: the lady whose basically just Dorothy Parker who tried to crush Marge's spirit.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
I might be able to empathize a little more with Lisa if she were more openly flawed or challenged, rather than consistently being the show's infallible voice of reason. Nobody likes a know-it-all.
This reminds me of the "Superman is too perfect, he's boring" argument, which I've never bought. But beyond that, I don't think Lisa is that simplistically presented early on. There are a lot of stories about her coming to realizations that while she intelligent, she still has growing up to do because she's eight. But down the road, there's a WEIRD mix of how to approach Lisa. See, I think as the show goes on, he's simplified, like the other characters, and for that reason, she's mostly there to say the right thing and point out why Homer is wrong, usually for a gag. But then, they also like to dump on her in a weird, way, like suddenly the writing room that was once protective of her is downright nasty to her. One of the worst cases I can think of is "Make Room For Lisa", where she learns she needs to be nicer to her accidentally abusive dad, which is the worst lesson. But season 1-9, I'd say Lisa is a character of depth. Heck, most episodes about her is about her going through an emotional situation far deeper than "I'm right and the world will see it." There are a few where she's largely aspirational, such as the Lisa Lionheart episode, but she doesn't read as a "nag" who wants to show she's right. She's someone who sees a social injustice and realizes that she can point toward a better world and goes through great pains and effort and she mostly fails... except she reaches one person and decides that the effort is worth it if one life is touched in good way. And I think that's a good message.

Conversely, it would be nice if some of the other characters were less flawed, or at least had their flaws less exaggerated. Homer had his moments of compassion despite being an id-driven dope, like sacrificing his ride on a beer blimp to make his daughter feel pretty, but now he just seems maliciously stupid. I could have punched his dumb ass when he made his father's kidneys explode, then refused to share one of his own organs and fix the problem that HE needlessly created. Was this one of the episodes from the bad half of the series' run? It sure feels like it.

Yeah, that's "Homer Simpson in 'Kidney Trouble'" and the problem with that goes even beyond simply that he caused the problem but that also the way he did it makes him seem grotesquely cruel. It's from season 10 and... man, a lot of these problems are happening sooner than I remember. There's still good in the era but the ugliness is really starting to show up in the series in this era. Homer's always been a "jerk" but the problem is at a certain point, the show stops making him a jerk with qualities that make him sympathetic and turn him into a raging asshole way too much. It just... stops being fun to watch this guy.
 

Büge

Arm Candy
(she/her)
That's... a VERY cynical take on the character and I seriously cannot buy into it. Yes, she can be manipulated through her hunger for recognition and be forced even to hesitate in moral dilemmas but I seriously don't buy that Lisa is a secret amoral monster that this interpretation assumes. This scene is about how even a smart person can be tricked with charm and savvy.
I'm not sure she's amoral so much as desperate for validation.

 

Tegan

dirtbag lesbian
(She/Her)
Remembered this morning that Bart's middle name is Jojo and started wondering what kind of Stand he'd have. The smart money's on it being a Krusty lookalike named Send in the Clowns.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
I would argue Bart would make one hell of a judge given his life experiences and would probably make some rather non-conventional interpretations. Plus in that timeline he's Chief Justice. That's pretty good.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
End of Itchy and Scratchy Movie episode. Sure. Bart to the Future episode? He just sucks. Which brings us to what Tegan mentioned: that he IS someone who has a lot going on and is a very rich character but a lot of the future episodes diminish him to "loser" status. Bart's success isn't as sure as Lisa's but he has an equal amount of potential. Both kids have an uphill battle from a different perspective.

Frankly, everyone knows Lisa is destined for success but I'm more interested in seeing success not measured through conventional means. They don't need wealth or power. But maybe they are people who make a difference. The show is very anti-authority and I feel like their futures need to reflect that.
 

Lokii

It's always time for burgers
(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator
Lisa could be a Rory Gilmore character where she hits a wall and her life collapses. Instead the future episodes run with the stereotypes of both characters. They're the most straightforward (cynical: marketable) depictions of what Bart and Lisa could be. It might be that straightforward versions lend themselves to jokes. Bart becoming loser BFFs with Ralph is pretty funny, though you hate to see it.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
The one thing I appreciated is that even Ralph was kind of fed up with Bart's shit.

And as noted in the last episode I watched, it seems like the writers generally choose the path of least resistance, which is why Barney got to be a wacky drunk again, despite the fact that he more or less stops factoring into the show. In a while, we are going to see another Homer flashback episode and now Lenny and Carl are his childhood friends.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Kill the Alligator and Run

As a kid, once I decided that there was no God or afterlife, for YEARS I had trouble sleeping at night. I didn't have insomnia but I would be tossing and turning in a panic. I still have a fear of death but its far less paralyzing. Plus, I have bigger fears, which is mostly somehow being responsible for another person's death. But for myself, the only cure was simply living my life and enjoying it. When I get closer to death, I may once again be overwhelmed by fear. But for now, I'm doing relatively OK. But seeing Homer Simpson go through an existential crisis definitely speaks to me in an otherwise weak episode.

In this episode, Homer takes a magazine quiz and determines he only has a few years left to live. After having a fear-induced breakdown at work, Homer is encouraged to take a vacation in Florida to relax. The Simpsons arrive and realize they went during Spring Break, when the state is at its rowdiest. Homer forgets his troubles with hard partying and eventually feels better. But after he accidentally hits a beloved local alligator with a speedboat, the entire family is arrested. The family makes an escape and hides out at a diner, only to be caught once more. The imprisoned family tries to escape but fail, only for the Simpsons to be let go when it turns out the alligator is still alive.

This is another episode with some interesting ideas that the show isn't all that interested in exploring. The first part is interesting to me because I feel like I've been in Homer's place in a couple ways and I'm interested in Homer in an existential crisis. And the idea of him overcoming his fear of death is simply to forget about it and live makes sense and even the idea of him sadly trying to party alone has potential in Homer going too far in trying to drown out his fear of death. But then the second half kicks in and its mostly about Florida's suckiness. And real life certainly has demonstrated that to be accurate but I feel like while there are a few insightful slams (the sheriff who is pretty lenient on partying vacationers because he's paid off), I don't think it is that strong and there's more tired redneck gags.

Which again, feels like part of John Swartzwelder's pet themes in the latter half of his Simpsons run. We've seen the carny episode, the biker episode, the trucker episode... There's a definite classism in his humour and it kind of paints people of a lower class in an ugly light. So I feel like this element hurts a bit. The episode lacks the sort of cleverness that made Swartzwelder one of my favourite writers in terms of overall plotting, though there's lots of individual gags that work well. By the episode's end, I didn't get much except "this is the lens that the Simpsons views Florida through" and frankly going back, "The Simpsons take on [[location]]" are often weaker, even when they aren't problematic.

Oh, hey, Deidrich Bader is in this episode as a sheriff. He's the guy who was Drew Carey's dark haired friend on the Drew Carey Show and was also a very good Batman. He lends some very mellifluous tones to his character, giving him a casual attitude that belies his cruelty. We also have an extended period of Kid Rock, who somehow stayed (admittedly low) on the cultural radar despite the terrible quality of his work. One of his songs his just shittier Sweet Home Alabama and he rhymes "funny things" with "funny things". And there's a pretty funny bit involving Charlie Rose (BOOO!) and Robert Evans. The latter has the funnier line reads and maybe that's in part due to the knowledge that Charlie Rose sucks but I think it also helps that Robert Evans is given some top quality nonsense to say. So overall, I wouldn't put it as a particularly strong episode, but it is one that has some legit good gags.

Great jokes I missed before:

Other great jokes:

"According to this, you're both idiots."
"Thanks! What do we owe ya?"

"I won't even live to see my children die!"

Best read: "You forgot rule #1: kill Homer Simpson."
Robert REALLY milks it.

"You hate your father, don't you?"
"Sometimes, but the guy I really hate is your father."
"I shouldn't have brought that up, I was just venting."

"Mom, Bart's sitting next to me."
"Mom, Lisa's growing."
This didn't speak to me until I had to take care of a niece and nephew who fight about fucking EVERYTHING!

I love that Homer's first instinct when encountering a lost child is to tackle them.

My favourite touch is the Sheriff trying to cuff a child, calling her a Teeny Houdini and the entire family finding that funny.



"Why does that only happen when no one is looking."

I like the diner owner who likes things about everyone.

"I raised eight young 'uns, three chillr'n and baby in here."

"No listenin', you hear me?"
"Uh... no?"
"You just don't learn, do ya?"

"That's what we've been trying to tell you."
Castellaneta does a great line read here.

Other notes:


I relate to this.

I didn't get into it much but I feel like there's an intended undercurrent about the authorities of Florida dehumanizing the poor and the criminal so at least there's that. But I wish the episode was about that more because what it is about as is isn't enough to me.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Last Tap Dance in Springfield

When I was a teenager, I noticed everyone in my family was playing an instrument and thought I'd like to too. I thought maybe a drum would be good due to its simplicity and then my dad sort of talked me down... then got me a drum for Christmas. I definitely played with it some but eventually gave up trying and it ended up collecting dust. That's me in a nutshell. I never got good because I didn't try. Meanwhile, when very young, my sister did violin. She was terrible. And she kept trying and trying and trying and... never got it. And it sounded terrible. She eventually quit and my parents were relieved. I can't imagine the frustration of practicing and practicing but never seeing results.

In this episode, Lisa sees a movie about dancing and decides she wants to be a dancer. She ends up joining a dance school run by a former child star Little Vicki. Lisa tries and tries but finds she is the only student making no progress. Vicki gives very little help and Lisa is afraid to quit and disappoint her parents. She eventually meets with Frink, who provides her with self-tapping shoes. The shoes get out of control and Lisa accidentally steals the show and ends up endangering herself. Lisa's parents are understanding and Lisa quits tap.

This was... really, really good. I was surprised. I remember enjoying this one back in the day but I can say that for many that I enjoy less now. But this one is consistently funny, has a solidly structured plot with jokes that feel organic to it rather than just wedged in and while nowhere near "poignant" or "emotional", does tap into an actual common childhood experience that sometimes practice isn't enough, especially if you have bad guidance.

Which brings us to Little Vicki, another in Springfield's long line of bad or flawed teachers. How telling is it that the often cynical and occasionally checked out is Springfield's best. But she isn't in this one. Instead, Little Vicki is someone who does seem to have actually teaching chops in terms of imparting knowledge but basically puts Lisa's failings on her. I suspect Vicki was intended for a bigger star but Tress MacNeille is perfect in the role, an old pro who's professionalism comes at the cost of Lisa's education. Now, to be fair, sometimes people might not be right for a certain skill, despite a passion, but Vicki never bothers figuring out a new teaching strategy and just lets it go.

But really, its less about Vicki, who is an outsized character, and more on Lisa continuing with something she wants to be passionate about but can't get passionate about or skilled in and feels she must continue out of duty. It isn't captured in any emotional way beyond "funny, I can relate" but unlike a lot of episodes where I see how it could have improved it, this one doesn't feel like it isn't missing anything. It isn't a top tier episode, but it feels confidant and solid a way that most of the season has not. The script belongs to Julie Thacker who created a recent Fox series Duncanville. Is that any good? Because if the quality is equal to or better than this, maybe I should check it out.

Joke I missed before:

"You'll have to shut down the mall."
"On President's day weekend? Are you crazy?"
I THINK this is a joke that this isn't a big sales week and it would be a better one if I didn't see so many President's Day Weekend sales. Can someone clarify if I'm just assuming a utilitarian line is a joke or not?

Other great jokes:
Whoever did this didn't include the show being retooled and that's a shame.




"Her perky smile and dancing help bring America right out of the depression."
"I think World War II helped a little too, Mom."
"Don't smart mouth, Lisa."


"My daddy shoots people."
Can't tell if too dark or right amount of accurate dark.

"That's a smile, not an upside down frown. Work on that, too."

"Oh, what's that awful sound?"
"The furnace?"
"ITS ME!"
"Awwwww."


I love that the eyes rubbing needed effects but that cat can smile on cue.

"My mistake was grabbing the cheese."

"Well, I also found this in the gift shop. Isn't it cute?"

"I'm hoping to turn it into a weapon. Hahahahaha It'll kill ya."


This made me laugh harder than I expected.



"STOP CLAPPING! YOU'LL KILL US ALL!"

"It can be a story about people coming to terms with things."


Other notes:

I have a friend who is INCREDIBLY grossed out by Homer's eyes crusting over. Like, its gross but it made him REALLY upset.

I didn't talk about the b-plot but it is fun. One thing the show is always good at is making ____ feel like some kind of wonderland for kids.

I like the idea that Ralph has only one skill and that's as a performer.
 

Lokii

It's always time for burgers
(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator
"On President's day weekend? Are you crazy?"
I THINK this is a joke that this isn't a big sales week and it would be a better one if I didn't see so many President's Day Weekend sales. Can someone clarify if I'm just assuming a utilitarian line is a joke or not?

I associate President's Day sales with mattresses and appliances more than mall-goods. Maybe that's what they were going for?
 
Top