“So where can we shoot this picture? We need a city that has a nuclear reactor and a gorge and can guarantee us the full cooperation of city officials.” – Movie Executive #2
“I’ll check Variety.” – Female Movie Executive
“Wow, look at that ad! Alright this place must be hot, they don’t need a big ad or even correct spelling.” – Movie Executive #2
“I agree with that logic.” – Movie Executive #1
Dave: I’m afraid my remarks will be brief tonightNot only did I not finish the episode
I’m on a work-related conference call right now
Charlie Sweatpants: That sucks.
Dave: Tell me about it.
Charlie Sweatpants: About the conference call, I envy you not finishing the episode.
So, what part of Homer the Whopper broke you to the point you could no longer continue?
Dave: Shortly after the scene with Comic Book Guy as Hollywood-stereotype
I gave it 10, 15 minutes and fuck all happened
Charlie Sweatpants: You may need to narrow that down.
Mad Jon: You mean the party?
Dave: Baby Prius
Yes, the party
Charlie Sweatpants: Ah.
Dave: I seem to remember something about David Bowie too
It all blurs together
Mad Jon: I had to hold back tears when the kid came into the board room. Mainly because he was exactly the same kid who wanted Bonestorm in Marge Be Not Proud.
Charlie Sweatpants: Yeah, they needed to do a weight loss montage and couldn’t decide on which cliche they wanted to employ.
Why did that bother you so much?
Mad Jon: Well, that was a pretty pivotal moment in my Simpsons saga.
Dave: I don’t think bothered is the right word, I was incredibly bored.
Charlie Sweatpants: I mean, that whole scene was just pointless clock killing. Literally. It was a throwaway that they ended by going to a flashback of the actual purchase of the comic book movie rights.
Dave: I’m sure there was some type of resolution to Homer’s weight problem but I just didn’t care
Mad Jon: But it was a kick in the nuts because this season opens with the same throwaway kid that was in the episode we have pretty much decided was the end of the series as we knew it.
Charlie Sweatpants: Speaking of the comic book, it was called Everyman, right? In one of the old Family Guys, when Brian is in Hollywood, he gets pissed off because another guy sold a script with a hero called John Everyman.
Mad Jon: That’s right
Charlie Sweatpants: It was meant as something unbelievably stupid that no production company in its right mind would ever use. And yet there’s Zombie Simpsons, running with it for 22 minutes that you’ll never get back.
Dave: That’s kind of it right there, Charlie. I wasn’t interested in wasting my time
Mad Jon: There weren’t any jokes. I can’t even think of one thing that was meant to do something other than fill time.
I can’t even put my finger on what bored me the most because it was all vanilla ice cream, only without taste, sugar, or fat.
Dave: That’s a disservice to vanilla.
Mad Jon: I know I know.
Charlie Sweatpants: I think if I added up all the 5 second “action” sequences for movie filming, comic book scenes and the like I’d get at least half an act.
Mad Jon: I also can’t believe Seth Rogen as a health nut. Every movie he is in he’s a fat pothead. I like that. I don’t like skinny Hollywood trainer. Not at all.
And the non-montage. what the hell was that?
One month later?
It was almost as bad as the stripper pole workout.
Dave: Excuse me?
Mad Jon: This was all after you turned your back in disgust
Charlie Sweatpants: As part of his training Homer spent a good 20 seconds of screen time on a stripper pole.
Dave: Dear god.
Charlie Sweatpants: It’s a workout, you see.
Dave: I suppose.
Charlie Sweatpants: It was a perfect Zombie Simpsons “gag” though: Hey, I got an idea, let’s have Homer on a stripper pole! He’s never done that before!
Mad Jon: But he has been in erotic pictures…
Dave: I’m going maul you. Rawr
Charlie Sweatpants: Question.
Mad Jon: Shoot
Damn it too slow.
Charlie Sweatpants: Seth Rogen wrote this, according to Jon it was his lifelong dream to write one of these, has he never seen “Radioactive Man” or did he have it on loop in the background while he wrote? I feel like it’s got to be one of the two.
Mad Jon: I dunno. Technically, the AP said it was his dream, he said it was the Holy Grail of writing.
I’ve only seen one interview with Seth Rogen, and during it he said he starting smoking pot in High School, perhaps the Radioactive Man episode just slipped his mind, you know, for more than a decade.
Charlie Sweatpants: Okay, but this was ridiculous: comic book movie comes to Springfield, local resident chosen as star, local resident unable to complete picture, crappy editing leads to lousy movie, I could go on.
Mad Jon: Yep, pretty much the exact same plot with different characters and a disturbing lack of Mickey Rooney.
Also no Wiggum or Quimby to extort the Hollywood Execs.
Dave: Ah, the puffy director’s pants tax.
Charlie Sweatpants: Nope, just a bunch of “hey aren’t movies stupid” scenes.
Mad Jon: I wasn’t paying a whole lot of attention to the article I read today about Rogen writing this, but I think I remember him mentioning the fact that this episode makes a statement about the movie industry.
Dave: Wait this episode had a point?
Charlie Sweatpants: No. But its creators might think it did.
Mad Jon: Here it is: “We wanted to comment on how Hollywood generally ruins these movies. The whole joke is Homer is cast to play a guy who’s an everyman and they try to make him into this physically fit guy,” Rogen said.
Dave: Well that’s the pot calling the kettle black.
Charlie Sweatpants: In terms of sheer, outright boringness, which was worse the imagined comic at the beginning or the movie sequences at the end?
Dave: I vote the former, only because I didn’t watch the latter.
Charlie Sweatpants: It was pretty bad.
Mad Jon: At least the beginning didn’t have the obligatory ‘Homer Crying’ scene.
Charlie Sweatpants: Yeah, but we got plenty of bipolar Homer throughout.
Mad Jon: Yep. More from Rogen: “It’s odd to see yourself looking cool when you’re someone like me,” Rogen said, laughing. “It’s just not something I’m used to.”
Charlie Sweatpants: In terms of them making him fit, I thought it was an informative contrast with “King of the Hill”. That was Season 9 so it was already on the down slope, but in that one when they made Homer fit he was still fat, he just had some muscles. In this one he had no fat left on him.
Mad Jon: I wonder what he was looking at.
Yeah he was definitely a washboard, and did they make a penis joke in that scene?
Charlie Sweatpants: They used to care a little bit about keeping things just a little bit sane, now all bets are off.
Dave: My favorite solution to Homer’s weight problem was in King-Size Homer: liposuction, via Burn’s cash pile
It was honest and true to both characters.
Mad Jon: Then they only lipoed him back to 239 and feelin’ fine
Charlie Sweatpants: I’m partial to the rice cake with all the toppings.
Only 25 calories.
Dave: As an aside, can we splatter more fake blood on our images? I’m rather partial to that.
Charlie Sweatpants: Knock yourself out.
Mad Jon: Yeah why not,
Mad Jon: I am really tired of Comic Book Guy.
Really really tired.
Charlie Sweatpants: He’s not someone you can hang a whole episode off.
Mad Jon: I am pretty sure he drops the “Worst __ ever!” line in almost every episode too
Dave: Of course. That’s how you know it’s him.
Mad Jon: That was ok a few times a season, usually as the only line he had.
Charlie Sweatpants: Well, it’s become a catchphrase and if there’s one thing Zombie Simpsons knows how to do it is ride a pop culture reference into the fucking ground.
Also, was his whole review supposed to be the end of the story or something? It’s just another example of the lousy story telling, but for a plot ending decision it didn’t have much oomph.
Also, what happened to Homer?
He just sort of trailed off there at the end.
Mad Jon: “It was completely surreal. I was just in shock afterward. I felt like I had gone skydiving or survived an earthquake,” Rogen said.
This is kinda how I felt about this episode.
Charlie Sweatpants: I was more bored, and glad the football game was starting.
Dave: Moreso than other Zombie Simpsons episodes though?
Mad Jon: Except I didn’t have a parachute and I’m allergic to earthquakes.
No, what pissed me off the most is that I still enjoy Seth Rogen’s 30 minutes of standup in each 2.5 hour movie he is in.
Charlie Sweatpants: No, I guess not more that other Zombie Simpsons in general, but Comic Book Guy’s plot almost felt like a B plot and then it was the main ending. It was just weird. Like I said, shitty story telling.
Dave: I’ve got a parachute you can borrow. Well, actually, it’s more of a dirty sheet, but y’know…
Mad Jon: And now I will never, ever be able to watch them and feel the same way.
Charlie Sweatpants: Enh, he jumped the shark for me when he raped Anna Faris.
Mad Jon: What is with the Jump the Shark reference. Everyone in my world has been saying that for weeks now..
Charlie Sweatpants: ?
Mad Jon: It’s the post election “thrown under the bus”
Charlie Sweatpants: It’s been around for almost a decade now, hasn’t it?
Mad Jon: Yeah, but I have heard it more times in the last month than in the rest of my life combined.
Charlie Sweatpants: Huh.
Well, how about this: Seth Rogen lost the handle when he raped Anna Faris.
Mad Jon: Fine whatever, I didn’t see that movie anyway.
Charlie Sweatpants: You aren’t missing much.
Mad Jon: That’s what I heard
Charlie Sweatpants: Anyway, the point I was going to make is that Rogen’s a funny guy, but nobody can make Zombie Simpsons funny.
It’s been chewed up and spit out so many times there just isn’t anything left in it.
Mad Jon: I have to wonder, he’s already rich, he’s already famous, he must know the ratings have been spiraling down for years, why get in now?
Charlie Sweatpants: Maybe he’s one of those people who doesn’t think the show has slipped too much.
Mad Jon: The Few, The Proud, The Zombies.
Charlie Sweatpants: Besides, I’d been avoiding the promo stuff for this one pretty much completely, I had no idea this was the Seth Rogen episode until after it was over. It wasn’t like it had an unmistakable air of “Rogen” about it.
It just meandered around for awhile and then ended.
There was one thing I thought was funny though. In Comic Book Guy’s store there was a poster for “Swatchmen”.
That’s kinda clever.
Dave: Missed that.
Charlie Sweatpants: That’s it though. For 22 minutes that isn’t much of an accomplishment.
Mad Jon: I guess, that was during the part that Bart and Milhouse, the two largest customers in the store, try to piss of Comic Book Guy by asking if Spiderman was a comic before it was a movie.
Not that I care about the episode continuity, but c’mon, try and think of a way to start an episode. At least try.
Charlie Sweatpants: You know, I’d forgotten that. But you’re right, that was really dumb.
Mad Jon: “If that is your real name, which it is not, Bart Simpson.”
Charlie Sweatpants: It’s a good example of the fact that you can keep the characters from aging on screen, but you can’t keep the world from aging around them.
Mad Jon: Well as a consolation, there will probably be only one, maybe two more episodes in the next two guaranteed seasons where the plot revolves around a comic book becoming a movie.
Or of homer becoming a movie star.
Charlie Sweatpants: You never know.
Mad Jon: A man can dream.
Charlie Sweatpants: Any final thoughts here. Talking about this episode has brought up some painful memories from last night and I need to go spend some time in the angry dome.
Mad Jon: I got nothing, this episode was just fucking boring.
Charlie Sweatpants: Amen to that.
Dave: Sounds like I didn’t miss much
Glad tuned out when I did.
Charlie Sweatpants: Smart man.