“I really don’t see how this helps Bart.” – Marge Simpson
“Just do it!” – Mrs. Krabappel
Scotty Boom, a Chew Network super-chef, challenges Homer to a smoke-off. But when someone steals Homer’s secret weapon – a smoker he bought off a mysterious man at a BBQ shack – Lisa and Bart are on the case.
Edward James Olmos and Bobby Moynihan guest star tonight, but I doubt it will be as entertaining as it should be to cross Battlestar with seven years of SNL. Fun fact for the week: my dog is named Craigory James Olmos (we call him Craig). Obviously he is named after the elder guest star we have tonight. So I got that goin’ too!
“Obesity is really unhealthy, any doctor will tell you that!” – Lisa Simpson
“Oh, yeah? Well, we’ll just see about that, little miss smart guy.” – Homer Simpson
“My God, that’s monstrous! I’ve never heard of anything so negligent. I’ll have no part of it.” – Dr. Hibbert
“Can you recommend a doctor who will?” – Homer Simpson
“Yes.” – Dr. Hibbert
“Don’t you think you should get a little fresh air and maybe some exercise?” – Marge Simpson
“Yeah, but what are you gonna do?” – Bart Simpson
In the early days, when the show routinely came in for social criticism from cranky old people, the writers liked to use Marge as a way to shoot back. The most famous example of this was “Marge’s” letter to then First Lady Barbara Bush, but they often worked it into episodes as well.
The quote above comes right after Marge asks Bart how many hours of TV he watches per day, and he casually replies “Six. Seven if there’s something good on“. That’s the show heaping scorn on brow-furrowing magazine articles and solemn pieces on 60 Minutes and the like about how television is terrible. It then really drives the point home:
“Marge, TV gives so much and asks so little. It’s a boy’s best friend.” – Homer Simpson
“That’s the problem. Even as we speak, millions of children are staring at the TV instead of getting some much needed exercise. Those children’s parents should be ashamed of themselves.” – Marge Simpson
This is The Simpsons being meta before that was even a term people used. Marge is parroting all the criticisms, while Homer is listing the simple reasons those critics will always be ignored. The whole thing ends with Homer asking Marge to apologize to the television after it gives Bart the idea to enroll in karate class.
Despite being on teevee, The Simpsons is perfectly happy to agree that television is terrible for people. It just isn’t going to pretend to care. What it is going to do is make fun of people who do care by showing how utterly ineffective all their shame throwing is. The joke, as with so many of their best, is on all of us.
“Homer, this is the Flanders’ entire living room set. How much did you pay for this?” – Marge Simpson
“Only seventy-five beans!” – Homer Simpson
“Seventy-five dollars? Ned must be desperate.” – Marge Simpson
“I’m sure you did nothing to discourage this, you scavenger of human misery.” – Lisa Simpson
“Hey, keep your hands off my china hutch!” – Bart Simpson
“Remember how Mom used to microwave our underwear on cold days?” – Bart Simpson
“Or the way Dad used to call the radio station with fake traffic tips?” – Lisa Simpson
Happy 20th Anniversary to “Home Sweet Homediddly-Dum-Doodily”! Original airdate 1 October 1995.