Archive for June, 2010

30
Jun
10

Crazy Noises: Girly Edition

Girly Edition4

“I want you to take that monkey back so he can be rehabilitated and get a second chance.” – Marge Simpson
“No, no, he’s fine.  Go on, Mojo, show Marge your Happy Dance!” – Homer Simpson

There’s no new Zombie Simpsons until September at the earliest (October? fingers crossed!), so we’re going to spend the summer overthinking Season 9.  Why Season 9?  Because we did Season 8 last summer, and Season 9 was when the show started becoming more Zombie than Simpsons.  Since we’re too lazy to do audio and too ugly to do video, we’ve booked a “chatroom” (ours is right between the one with the sexy seventh graders and the one with the bored federal agents pretending to be sexy seventh graders).  So log on to your dial-up AOL and join us.  This text has been edited for clarity and spelling (especially on “convenience”).

Today’s episode is 921 “Girly Edition”, 911 “All Singing, All Dancing” was yesterday.

Charlie Sweatpants: This one is mostly good.

Mad Jon: I generally enjoy it.

It’s not 1-6 top caliber, but it is one of the best in season 9.

Charlie Sweatpants: It gets a little carried away with Willie (especially at the end), but other than that it’s very solid.

Mad Jon: The Brockman induced schmaltz is worth the price of admission.

Charlie Sweatpants: They really enjoyed themselves with all those mind fogging reports.

Dave: It’s watchable, yeah.

Mad Jon: I sense a lingering desire to put us in our place, Dave.

Dave: Nah, there’ll be none of that tonight.

  It’s not top of 9 for me only because I have fewer in the top than the two of you.

Charlie Sweatpants: What displeases you?

Mad Jon: Yes, tell us.

Dave: As an aside, I had a friend in high school who more or less built a career around foggy news and warm fuzzies. I blame this episode, actually.

Eh, it just doesn’t grab me. The Bart/Lisa rivalry isn’t particularly entertaining… I hate Lindsey Naegle… the Willie stuff got weird. Y’know. That.

Charlie Sweatpants: The only Bart/Lisa thing I didn’t like is how personal Bart takes her thinking he dumb.

He knows he’s dumber than her, he doesn’t care.

Dave: Bingo.

Mad Jon: The Willie stuff dragged on for sure, and I agree with Pants on the Lisa/Bart point.

Dave: And for no reason Bart gets massively butthurt and goes on a mission to prove a point that doesn’t matter.

Charlie Sweatpants: But I do like Lindsey Naegle.

Mad Jon: But time wise they weren’t that lengthy and they led to funny lines.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, he doesn’t really, and I like when he reads the newspaper.

Mad Jon: And of course, Mojo was great.

Dave: Naegle reminds me of too many alpha-bitch types I work with. Therefore I hate her.

  Mojo is pretty awesome.

  And I enjoyed Homer’s request for a duck.

Mad Jon: It is unfortunate/fortunate that it clouds the Homer – jerkass stuff.

Charlie Sweatpants: How so?

Mad Jon: Homer wasn’t the man we loved from the early seasons in this episode. But because of his behavior Mojo came into my life, so it’s a wash as far as I am concerned.

  Non-Homer behavior wears on me very quickly.

Charlie Sweatpants: I see what you mean, but this is so tame for Jerkass Homer that it hardly registers any more.

Mad Jon: True enough, but I don’t have a lot of grey area for that man.

Dave: I agree with Charlie here. Homer’s a jerkass but by modern standards he’s a saint in this episode.

Charlie Sweatpants: I remember distinctly not liking the way Homer acted when this one first aired, now I don’t mind so much. Again the parallel with the declining elderly relative is apt. This was one of his better days.

Dave, to get back to Lindsey Naegle for a moment, if she reminds you of people you work with, shouldn’t that make this funnier?

Dave: It should but it doesn’t.

There isn’t so much parody with her character as there is a mirror.

Mad Jon: You would think so but here we are…

Charlie Sweatpants: She showed up for the first time as the network executive spouting business speak, so you know she was based on all the ladder climbing career nutjobs that show up at a place like FOX the way new teeth show up in a shark.

Dave: Wasn’t this the first cat lady episode too?

Charlie Sweatpants: I think so.

Mad Jon: I’ll take your word for it.

Dave: Again, Wikipedia backs me up here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eleanor_Abernathy#Crazy_Cat_Lady

  Two new female non-characters, how lucky we were.

Er, scratch that.

  I’m dead wrong on this one.

Mad Jon: About what?

Dave: I thought this was Naegle’s first appearance; it’s not.

Charlie Sweatpants: Cat Lady is another one of those characters in the Duff Man/Disco Stu mold where it was funny once, kinda funny the second time, and then turned into an actual character.

Another reason to love Naegle: she gave us permission to scratch “proactive” and “paradigm” from the language.

Mad Jon: She is in plenty of Zombie-sodes

Charlie Sweatpants: To this day I avoid using those words.

  But Naegle’s a better character than the Cat Lady.

Mad Jon: My boss uses proactive at least 3 times a day.

Dave: I get twitchy if I don’t say paradigm at least once a week.

Charlie Sweatpants: The Cat Lady is one joke, Naegle’s much closer to the show’s better minor characters.

Dave: Well enjoy your Naegle-lovefest.

  I still don’t like her one bit.

Mad Jon: Fair enough.

Charlie Sweatpants: I guess if I didn’t like Naegle I would dislike this one, but I don’t so I don’t.

  See that? Quadruple negative!

Dave: Mind blown.

Mad Jon: Very creative.

  But since I’ve been drinking, it kind of went over my head.

Charlie Sweatpants: Oh wait, “I don’t doubt that if I didn’t like Naegle I would dislike this one, but I don’t so I don’t” Sextuple negative!

Mad Jon: Take THAT you stupid Dean.

Charlie Sweatpants: I watched that one this morning.

Mad Jon: That’s a good one.

Charlie Sweatpants: Before we get sidetracked again, any final thoughts on Girly Edition?

Dave: Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

Mad Jon: Are you high too Dave?

Charlie Sweatpants: No, it’s a grammatically correct sentence that uses only one word.

Dave: Indeed.

Charlie Sweatpants: It’s kinda-famous.

Dave: Indeed.

Mad Jon: Clearly famous.

  Maybe I run in the wrong circles.

Charlie Sweatpants: Then again, I dislike things that are grammatically correct, so I’ll hang with Lindsey and Dave can play with his buffaloes.

Seriously, anything else?

Mad Jon: You could have ended that sentence with a preposition or something.

  No, nothing from me.

Dave: Nah.

Charlie Sweatpants: I cheated on the preposition test in fifth grade. I still don’t totally understand what one is.

30
Jun
10

Quote of the Day


“Are there any jive-talking robots in this play?” – Bart Simpson


“I don’t think so.” – Marge Simpson


“Bart, don’t ask stupid questions. Is there any frontal nudity?” – Homer Simpson


“No Homer.” – Marge Simpson

29
Jun
10

Crazy Noises: All Singing, All Dancing

Waiting to Exhale

Image “borrowed” from here.

“We got the popcorn, did you get ‘Waiting to Exhale’?” – Marge Simpson
“They put us on the ‘Waiting to Exhale’ waiting list, but they said don’t hold your breath.” – Homer Simpson

There’s no new Zombie Simpsons until September at the earliest (October? fingers crossed!), so we’re going to spend the summer overthinking Season 9.  Why Season 9?  Because we did Season 8 last summer, and Season 9 was when the show started becoming more Zombie than Simpsons.  Since we’re too lazy to do audio and too ugly to do video, we’ve booked a “chatroom” (ours is right between the one with the sexy seventh graders and the one with the bored federal agents pretending to be sexy seventh graders).  So log on to your dial-up AOL and join us.  This text has been edited for clarity and spelling (especially on “convenience”).

Today’s episode is 911 “All Singing, All Dancing”, 921 “Girly Edition” is coming tomorrow.

Charlie Sweatpants: Shall we get started? Singing clip show or media parody?

Mad Jon: Let’s start with clip show. I don’t want to end on a low note tonight.

Dave: Agreed.

Charlie Sweatpants: Fair enough, because this clip show sucks.

Mad Jon: It really does.

Dave: The clips are good. The glue is terrible.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well put.

Mad Jon: Exactly, I enjoy the songs, but did anyone else get the feeling that they just stopped caring about the glue around halfway through? The transitions sort of came and went when they felt like it.

Charlie Sweatpants: I think they stopped caring much sooner than halfway through.

Dave: Halfway is generous. I thought they stopped trying far earlier than that.

Charlie Sweatpants: Ha, beat you to it!

Dave: That you did.

Charlie Sweatpants: The opening is kinda funny, and the "Paint Your Wagon" song is nice.

But after that it’s basically an exercise in time killing.

Dave: I think the "Waiting to Exhale" bit is good too.

Charlie Sweatpants: That is a good joke.

Mad Jon: I think the Snake stuff pisses me off the very most.

Dave: There’s the implicit admission at the end about how lousy everything is with the banner and fourth wall breaking.

So you knew it sucked, but you served it to us anyway. Fuck you.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, they did that in previous clip shows much better.

Dave: Right.

This wasn’t nearly as clever.

Mad Jon: I very much enjoy the first three clip shows.

Charlie Sweatpants: There were three?

Mad Jon: Yep, there was the April fools day one, the love story one, and the Troy McClure one.

Charlie Sweatpants: Troy McClure one?

You mean the 138th episode spectacular?

I’m not sure I’d define that as a clip show.

Dave: Well the banner said clip show number 4.

So let’s think about this…

Mad Jon: So how would you define a show that spends most of it’s time playing clips from other episodes?

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, a lot of the clips were things that didn’t air originally.

Dave: Wikipedia counts it.

Charlie Sweatpants: Not all of them, but some.

Mad Jon: Fair enough Charlie, but they were still clips that weren’t aired.

But we’ve digressed.

Charlie Sweatpants: Enh. I just don’t have this mentally filed under "clip show". We could debate the semantics all night, but I think we may just be avoiding talking about this particular one.

Dave: Jon, we all hate the Snake parts. Why do you?

Mad Jon: Well, I’m sure it’s the same reason you do, it is unbelievably unnecessary. They didn’t need him, it filled time, and was rather annoying.

And, that’s not Snake’s MO

He’s more of a convenience store and bank hold up guy, not a hostage taker or murderer

Charlie Sweatpants: The whole thing was time filling. They barely had a way to string the clips together, and all of the clips are loooooong.

And you’re right about Snake, it was more violent than we usually expect from him.

In the other clip shows, they show clips much faster and the clips themselves are shorter.

Mad Jon: Yeah, as the Devil’s advocate I could say that the song clips are inherently longer.

It reminds me of the Songs of Springfield CD.

Charlie Sweatpants: I know in this case they have to show the whole song, but several of them have lots of non-song parts around them.

Dave: Laziness, yeah?

Charlie Sweatpants: Lyle Lanley’s entire non-song introduction is there.

Mad Jon: Except that doesn’t need tie-ins

Dave: The clips don’t need contextualization.

Charlie Sweatpants: "Who Needs the Kwik-E-Mart" ends with Apu on the roof.

Dave: There we go again repeating each other.

Charlie Sweatpants: There was no need to do that other than filling time.

Mad Jon: When things are easy to hate, we are pretty quick at the draw.

Charlie Sweatpants: Pretty much the only part of this one that’s decent is the very beginning.

Dave: So the episode was a time suck, Snake was pointlessly out of character, and the rest was forgettable.

That cover it?

Mad Jon: At least with a shitty clip show, the crap plot part is short.

Charlie Sweatpants: That’s true enough.

It’s not like I’ve ever been bored by the Stonecutter’s song.

Mad Jon: Great song.

Charlie Sweatpants: And I always crack up when the beach ball bounces off Lovejoy’s head.

Mad Jon: I like when Homer reminds Marge they used to make out to that hymn

But I don’t feel any need to have my enjoyment of a different episode splash off on this one.

Charlie Sweatpants: Me neither. This one never makes my regular rotation.

Mad Jon: Anything else guys?

Or should we talk about something better.

Charlie Sweatpants: I don’t think so, there just isn’t much episode to discuss here.

29
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

“Dad! Hide your shame!” – Lisa Simpson
“Hey Homie, I can see your doodle!” – Ned Flanders
“Shut up Flanders.” – Homer Simpson

28
Jun
10

Folding Like Umbrellas

Via Cromulent Words comes this most excellent rendition of Lisa’s strike song from “Last Exit to Springfield”:

In turn, this led me to YouTube’s related videos.  Sure enough, there are more:

Here’s one with a little Spanish flavor:

This guy’s singing voice is remarkably accent free given that he appears to be a native German speaker:

Germans love Lisa’s protest song:

Piano?  Piano:

A man with aviator sunglasses has no time to waste.  Here’s the up-tempo short version (only 29 seconds):

A shirt is not required when you have this kind of enthusiasm:

By the “folding tower”?  Why not:

And finally, this is just awesome:

I love how the kid who’s playing Lenny snaps his fingers.  Bravo all around.

28
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

Homer vs Patty & Selma2

“Is something wrong, Mr Simpson?” – Ballet Instructor
“I don’t like wearing tights, ma’am.” – Bart Simpson
“But so many of your heroes wear tights!  Batman, for example . . . and Magellan.” – Ballet Instructor

27
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

“That’s right boys! Troy’s back from the gutter and he’s brought someone with with him!” – Troy McClure

26
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

My Sister, My Sitter3

“I’m here to pick up the ambassador from Ghana.” – Ghanaian Chauffeur
“Well he’s not here!  Nobody’s here!  And none of you should be here, you’ve all been tricked!” – Lisa Simpson
“Why would the ambassador do such a thing?” – Ghanaian Chauffeur

25
Jun
10

Reading Digest: Futurama Returns Edition

Futurama Garbage

“Fry, this stuff was garbage when it was new.  Let’s blow it up already.” – Leela 

I have not yet watched the new Futurama episodes that were on last night, so I have no opinion on whether or not they suck.  The reviews, both professional and from fans, have been almost universally positive, and I take that as a good sign.  But in one respect the return of Futurama has already been a success, because every time someone mentions it they also mention The Simpsons, and that often leads to discussion of how badly the elder show has decayed.  So this week we’ve got not one, not two, but three people who bashed Zombie Simpsons.  It’s nice.  There’s also some love for Lisa, something I didn’t know about “Homerpalooza”, a truly bizarre short story loosely based on “Lisa the Vegetarian”, Marge in both cake and fruit form, and the usual usage.

Enjoy.

Homer Simpson’s Duff Beer: Barley, Hops, and Cultural Stories? – Simpsons merchandise and the real Duff in Rome. 

Ten Great TV Cartoon Geeks – Lisa checks in at #3. 

Marge Gets Sweet – Marge done with fruit and what looks like whipped cream and chocolate. 

Celebrating and Nurturing the Miracle of Life – This is a rather long post about fatherhood, and this is poor usage:

Homer says, “Hey boy! Wanna play catch?” Bart says: “No thanks dad.” Homer mutters under his breath, “When a son doesn’t want to play catch with his father something is definitely wrong.” Grandpa Simpson over hears his son and chimes in, “I’ll play catch with you son!” Homer says, “Go home old man.”

It’s really not even close.  The actual exchange is:

Homer: Bart, son, you want to play catch?
Bart: No.
Homer: When a boy doesn’t want to play catch with his old man something is seriously wrong.
Grandpa: I’ll play catch with you, son.
Homer: Get the hell out!
Grandpa: I’m gone.

Disturbing Simpsons – A very strange, bizarrely animated take on “Lisa the Vegetarian”.  Dr. Nick steals her kidney at one point.  (via this and Springfield Springfield’s Twitter feed)

Senior Quotes – Homer Simpson did, indeed, have a great quote in his yearbook. 

Simply The Best #36 (Cartoon Television Shows) – Simpsons is #1, though it comes with the usual Zombie Simpsons cliche:

I don’t feel like it’s been at the top if it’s game for a while but it’s still better than 95% of the shows that currently air.

Oh well. 

I Dreamed a Dream – Summer Story Tellers – I long ago lost count of the number of things I discovered through The Simpsons, this guy discovered show tunes. 

Homer Sees Homer – Click this, right now.  Sadly there’s no location given, which probably saved me a lot of money because I would travel a very long way to get my picture taken in front of such a work of absolute genius. 

Here come the girls! – One writer’s list of her favorite female characters.  Mom and Leela from Futurama are on here, as is this:

Lisa Simpson – “The Simpsons.” (Pretty much my hero when I was growing up. She gave an extremely erudite voice to nerdy bookworm girls everywhere! I wanted to play the saxophone because of her. Sadly I lack any form of musical talent.)

Maggie, but not Marge, also makes the list. 

Is this the very first Homer Simpson? – A root shaped like Homer Simpson was found in China.  (via Springfield Springfield’s Twitter feed, again)

Happy Father’s Day! – Click through for a picture of a sweet looking Marge Simpson cake. 

Hey cartoons, enough with the counting and on and on with the fucking colors. – An impressively unhinged rant (accompanied by lots of images) against today’s gentler cartoons.  Lots of references to Simpsons (sadly there is one image from the Zombie Simpsons era), and only a little bit racist.  Personally, I don’t hate these shows that much – except for Dora the Explorer.  You can get high and watch Teletubbies and be pretty entertained, but Dora should not be watched by anyone over the age of two.  I’m serious about that, it’s actually too juvenile for three year olds. 

American citizens are the mob from The Simpsons, example 25,367 – The quote here is slightly off, but I’m still calling this excellent usage because he’s quoting tv.com, and they’ve got it wrong.  Here it is from tv.com:

Crowd: Down with taxes! Down with taxes!
Mayor Quimby: Are these morons getting dumber or just louder?
Aide: Dumber, sir. They won’t give up the bear patrol, but they won’t pay the tax for it either.

It should read:

Crowd: Down with taxes! Down with taxes! Down with taxes!
Helen Lovejoy: Won’t you think of the children?
Mayor Quimby: Are these morons getting dumber or just louder?
Aide: Dumber, sir.  They won’t give up the bear patrol, but they won’t pay taxes for it either.

Nit, picked.

Courtney Love: Behind the Music – The restart of Behind the Music did Courtney Love recently and Alyx at Feminist Music Geek goes into all the details.  I had no idea Hole had that many albums, shows what I know.  Here’s the Simpsons part:

I found including footage of Love hanging out with Sonic Youth noteworthy, as there were no interviews with band members. Kim Gordon’s insights would be especially useful, as she co-produced Hole’s caustic debut Pretty On the Inside. However, Gordon believes Cobain was murdered, and veiled references to Love’s potentially amoral quest for celebrity in songs like “Becuz” suggest that no love is lost. I remember hearing in the commentary track for The Simpsons‘ “Homerpalooza” episode that Love was originally cast in the episode, but one unnamed act who was in the episode refused to participate if she was involved. I can’t help but think it’s them.

I guess Sonic Youth did more than just steal shit from Peter Frampton’s cooler. 

It’s back! – The first of our three Futurama fans who don’t like Zombie Simpsons:

It was easy to be fearful that Futurama would have come back with the quality of a Simpsons episode from the last decade. I would be a liar if I said I wasn’t a little worried even after the movies gave hope. But somehow, Futrama kept things awesome and it all just felt right.

TV Wasteland: Bite My Shiny Metal Butt – More:

Futurama hasn’t taken anything for granted; it fought for its spot in the TV sun and while it hasn’t always been perfect, one at least gets the impression that its creators are laboring to entertain us. The Simpsons, on the other hand, let success go to its head a long time ago. After Brad Bird left the show in the middle of its 9th season, it underwent a slow, steady decline into utter irrelevance, embodying the same lazy clichés it once skewered with such efficiency. It’s a bloated whale looking for a beach–a living tragedy for those of us who adored it in its heyday–and whatever relevance it once possessed has been squandered by decades of creative neglect.

Futurama is BACK! – And finally (though I thought Family Guy only got canned once):

With the premiere of the new season now over and fans around the globe rejoicing in the Matt Groening created masterpiece’s return, I am left, still in awe at the fact that Fox made one of the worst decisions in the history of TV (Ok, they have made WAAAAY more than one). Fox, you SUCK! I really cannot stand the fact that you can keep a piece of shit like “The Simpsons” on air yet have cancelled Family Guy twice and Futurama years ago. At least they gave King Of The Hill a fair run/final episode.

Fuck you Fox.

Well done, all around.

25
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

“I hear reading!” – Principal Seymour Skinner

24
Jun
10

Crazy Noises: Simpson Tide

Simpson Tide3

“I was on PT 109 with John F. Kennedy.  I was the first to discover his terrible secret.” – Abe “Grandpa” Simpson
“Ich bin ein Berliner.” – John F. Kennedy
“He’s a Nazi!  Get him!” – Abraham Simpson

There’s no new Zombie Simpsons until September at the earliest (October? fingers crossed!), so we’re going to spend the summer overthinking Season 9.  Why Season 9?  Because we did Season 8 last summer, and Season 9 was when the show started becoming more Zombie than Simpsons.  Since we’re too lazy to do audio and too ugly to do video, we’ve booked a “chatroom” (ours is right between the one with the sexy seventh graders and the one with the bored federal agents pretending to be sexy seventh graders).  So log on to your dial-up AOL and join us.  This text has been edited for clarity and spelling (surprisingly enough, not on “Blaxploitation”).

Today’s episode is 919 “Simpson Tide”, 917 “Lisa the Simpson” was yesterday.

Charlie Sweatpants: "Simpson Tide" is 50% gold, 50% shit, but the shit is so black and stinky that I never watch the gold parts. There, I said it.

No, not black, green. That awful "what did I eat?" color.

Dave: Of the two we’re bitching about this week, this is clearly the weaker one.

Charlie Sweatpants: There are long parts of this episode that would not be out of place in Season 12+, and I hate them so very, very much.

Dave: Though to my point earlier, more watchable than I remembered.

Mad Jon: Meh, fair enough. There is definitely too much shit here. I do like the beginning. Probably my favorite part.

Charlie Sweatpants: Definitely.

Dave: It starts off strong.

Mad Jon: Pretty Classic Homer, wakes up from a nap, decides he’s earned a coffee break.

Charlie Sweatpants: Until they get to the submarine this one is amongst the top of 9, then they get to the submarine and it all goes to hell.

Dave: The intro wouldn’t be out of place in a classic episode.

Charlie Sweatpants: Yeah, it’s a little slower than "Dawn of Man", but it’s in the same ballpark.

Mad Jon: I like the scene in the recruiting office too, not as much though,

  Yes, Dawn of Man comparison is apt.

Charlie Sweatpants: But the recruiting video is great.

Mad Jon: Also true.

Charlie Sweatpants: And the Blaxploitation movies are hilarious.

Dave: Oooh, funky.

Charlie Sweatpants: Of course, two of them are real, but that hardly makes it less funny. [Ed Note: That would be Blacula and Blackenstein.]

Dave: Naturally.

Charlie Sweatpants: The first warning of danger here is that Moe, Barney and Apu join too.

Mad Jon: Most assuredly a loud, red, flaming alarm.

Charlie Sweatpants: The "Deer Hunter" scene is funny as hell, but it was a forerunner of just how boring the plot was to get.

I don’t have a problem with Homer getting into adventures in theory, but this is just noxious.

It’s one insane leap of story-breaking logic after another, and the horns of suspense are everywhere.

Mad Jon: The fact that all of those guys, after 1 week, understand how to operate in various roles on the sub is particularly angering.

Charlie Sweatpants: Or that Homer is left in charge. That’s just lazy. Admiral Baby made more sense.

Dave: Ha.

Mad Jon: Admiral Baby makes me laugh.

At least more than most of this episode.

Charlie Sweatpants: This just keeps going on! Enemy submarine! Pinhole leak! Surrounded by battleships!

Dave: Sparkle sparkle!

Mad Jon: The endless use of "it’s my first day"

Charlie Sweatpants: And all of them are played for action/suspense.

Mad Jon: And the recycled Nu-cu-lur joke that went on for 20 seconds.

Charlie Sweatpants: Most of the drill instructor stuff falls flat.

I get that they’re making fun of Hollywood drill instructors (Trademark 1987 R.Lee Ermey), but they have nothing to do with anything.

Dave: The stupid bodyguard song, ugh.

Charlie Sweatpants: And they’re not funny. It’s Homer acting invincibly.

  I hate that.

Pretty much the only thing that doesn’t suck in the second half of this one is the whole Soviet Union thing. "Must crush Capitalism" is grand. But it’s not enough.

The rest is just blindingly bad and boring.

Mad Jon: Oh yeah the Russia into the USSR is really funny. Kind of drags on, but ends with Lenin which is worth the wate.

  Wait.*

Dave: Is the answer more Lenin, less Homer?

Mad Jon: Apparently I now spell phonetically when I’ve been drinking.

Charlie Sweatpants: The answer is less "action".

Mad Jon: Well, nowadays I would be happy to have 8-9 seconds of Homer per episode.

Charlie Sweatpants: It also kinda bugs me that Homer gets fired and it’s not a big deal.

Homer’s left the plant before, but he finds a way back. This time you get the feeling that they’re just working from their template.

Mad Jon: Ah yes, but this breaks us down for the fact that in the next 10 seasons he spends approximately 10 minutes at work.

And 9 of those are in season 10.

Charlie Sweatpants: Pretty much.

They made a joke about it in 11 or 12. It didn’t help.

  Or maybe that’s 10. I forget.

Mad Jon: Something along the lines of "the timing’s good, I just got fired again."

But I couldn’t tell you what plot line that is from…

Charlie Sweatpants: That’s not the one I was thinking of.

I looked it up, it’s from the one where Maude dies: http://www.snpp.com/episodes/BABF10.

Mad Jon: Well, I’m not surprised there are multiples.

Charlie Sweatpants: It didn’t matter as much in "You Only Move Twice", but even at the time it felt downhill.

Dave: Did it?

That’s a pretty good episode in my book.

Charlie Sweatpants: A little, but this one kinda confirmed it.

Dave: Well, I’m not going to damn the former because of the latter.

Charlie Sweatpants: Not at all.

  "You Only Move Twice" is as good as Season 8 gets, there’s a reason we didn’t do a Crazy Noises on it. This one is much, much worse. They’re not even in the same conversation, and it’s with this one that I really began getting the feeling that they were phoning it in.

That one was a good idea that had Homer in it, this one was "Hey, we haven’t made him a sea captain yet!".

  If that makes sense.

Mad Jon: Yeah, I can see that, although I never really have taken much time to sort out when I thought they started phoning it in. Not that I at all disagree with you.

Dave: Yeah, the inflection point is less clear in my book, but your point is well taken.

Charlie Sweatpants: Anything else? Thinking about this episode is making me cranky.

Mad Jon: A just feeling my lord.

Charlie Sweatpants: What have you been watching lately?

Mad Jon: Nothing. It’s summer.

24
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

“The common box kite was originally used as a means of drying wet string.” – Martin Prince

23
Jun
10

Crazy Noises: Lisa the Simpson

Lisa the Simpson2

“Me and Frostillicus go back a long ways, I used to share a bathroom with Frostillicus.  In fact, I got a real funny story about that, actually it’s not so much funny as it is long.” – Abe “Grandpa” Simpson

There’s no new Zombie Simpsons until September at the earliest (October? fingers crossed!), so we’re going to spend the summer overthinking Season 9.  Why Season 9?  Because we did Season 8 last summer, and Season 9 was when the show started becoming more Zombie than Simpsons.  Since we’re too lazy to do audio and too ugly to do video, we’ve booked a “chatroom” (ours is right between the one with the sexy seventh graders and the one with the bored federal agents pretending to be sexy seventh graders).  So log on to your dial-up AOL and join us.  This text has been edited for clarity and spelling (especially on “Frostillicus”).

Today’s episode is 917 “Lisa the Simpson”, 919 “Simpson Tide” will be up tomorrow.

Charlie Sweatpants: Which one do we want to start with: the submarine or the dumbening?

Mad Jon: Dumbening to starts off please

Dave: Good, that’s still fresh in my memory.

Just finished it 10 minutes ago.

Charlie Sweatpants: In my humble opinion, this one is near the top of 9.

Mad Jon: I kind of agree

Dave: Let me backpedal a bit from my statement a couple weeks ago about much of 9 being unwatchable. This was far more pleasant than I remembered.

Charlie Sweatpants: It has a few small problems, but they’re awfully minor.

Damn it, we’re agreeing again.

"Get Rich or Die Bloggin’" by that White People guy says we have to disagree.

Mad Jon: I think there is plenty of good stuff, and even the wacky Homer stuff is pretty tame. Also the wacky stuff actually figures into the plot.

Charlie Sweatpants: But it’s more stupid than wacky.

Dave: Lisa’s proselytizing at the end was about the only thing I really didn’t care for

Charlie Sweatpants: What part?

Dave: And even that was mild by modern Zombie Simpsons standards

Mad Jon: My biggest problem is the beginning

Dave: The shit about loving your brain.

Charlie Sweatpants: Yeah, but that was okay because a) it was in character and, more importantly, b) it used both ends of the Proposition 305 joke. And the Proposition 305 joke is fantastic.

Dave: Indeed it is.

Mad Jon: Moochin’ war widows

Dave: I kinda liked Ralph’s "But you’re suffering" line too. I use that more often than I realize

Charlie Sweatpants: The biggest gripe I have with this one is the soup skin thing.

Mad Jon: Explain

Charlie Sweatpants: Much as I like to not harp on inter-episode continuity, Homer’s line in "Bart Gets an F" about hating "that icky soup skin" is funnier than Homer scarfing it down. They’re contradictory, but what really gets me is that it feels like a more Jerkass/Xtreme Homer thing to do.

Dave: Yeah, okay. Didn’t even think about that.

Charlie Sweatpants: It just feels like I’m watching the death of a character I love, and I don’t like that.

Mad Jon: I can see that.

But that seems to be a general complaint we have about these mid series seasons.

Charlie Sweatpants: Yeah, but this is really specific.

Jerkass Homer is remarkably absent from this one.

For the most part.

Mad Jon: I just think it plays into the episode.

If Lisa wasn’t worried about losing her brain, his actions would be jerkass.

Charlie Sweatpants: I’ll disagree in most instances.

Mad Jon: Do that then.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, take the game where they crash into each other with pots on their heads. That’s a bit jerkass, I’ll grant, but only a bit and it ends quickly.

They move right on, but they imply that it goes on longer by having Homer note that the score is 22-16.

Mad Jon: So the candy bars on the ground don’t fit?

Charlie Sweatpants:  The candy bars thing goes on a beat too long, you’re right about that.

Dave: Eh, we’re a pedantic Simpsons blog, but even that’s a bit much for me.

Charlie Sweatpants: Huh?

Dave: The implication that it goes on longer.

Mad Jon: I agree, shallow AND pedantic.

Dave: I’m okay with that.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, it’s a funny idea, but it stretches out way too long before getting to Lisa’s hilarious vision of her dumb future with Ralph.

Mad Jon: That was very funny.

Charlie Sweatpants: I love that her TV is set up sideways.

Mad Jon: But what happens when the buildings say no more?

Charlie Sweatpants: But the candy bar thing (and Lisa’s decision) going on longer than they need to are small complaints.

Mad Jon: I agree

Dave: Yep, tiny.

Mad Jon: And as I said I feel they fit in with the plot.

So’s I’m ok with it.

Charlie Sweatpants: This one has a ton of good stuff, from the extended Simpson clan, the desperate jazz musician, Troy McClure’s DNA video.

Mad Jon: The DNA video is great.

I really don’t have any valid criticisms for this one. It’s not quite as good as my favorite episodes, but I’m not bored either.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, the B-plot isn’t as good.

It’s not bad, but it’s not up to par with the rest of the episode.

Mad Jon: I don’t mind it, it was kind of mindless and random, but I like the oddities Apu sets up and the whole plot is worth a few chuckles. It’s still Season 9 after all.

Dave: It’s not up to par with the rest of the episode, but it’s perfectly watchable.

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, what I appreciate about it is that, unlike the next one, it has only one weird leap of logic: Jasper gets frozen. They establish that and move on instead of layering them one after another.

Mad Jon: Moon Pie… What a time to be alive

Charlie Sweatpants: I’m partial to "Time has ravaged your once youthful looks".

Mad Jon: I like how Jasper asks for the Time Traveler Discount at the Nude-E-Mart

Dave: "Come on in!"

Charlie Sweatpants: Well, if we’re going to close with some good quotes, I love Grandpa in this one. The haircut is good, but his description of life with Frostillicus "Actually it’s not so much funny as it is long" is great.

Mad Jon: That is a very good one on which to go out.

Charlie Sweatpants: But the champ of the episode is "You have to listen to the notes she’s not playing", "I can do that at home". I like jazz, but pretentious jazz defenders, some of whom I’ve met and who can be unbelievably un-self-aware, deserve that.

That is a highly usable quote.

And I love the little chat Lisa has with the musician. That Lisa takes inspiration from a shop worn sales pitch really makes the ending.

"Damn, that felt like a sale."

And on that note of cynical storytelling, shall we move on?

23
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

Treehouse of Horror II4

“It has the power to grant wishes to its owner.” – Merchant
“Oh yeah, how much?” – Homer Simpson
“Sir, I must strongly advise you to not purchase this.  Behind every wish lurks grave misfortune.  I, myself, was once president of Algeria.” – Merchant

22
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

“Marge, I swear I didn’t touch her. You know how bashful I am. I can’t even say the word ‘titmouse’ without giggling like a schoolgirl. Hehehehehe!” – Homer Simpson

21
Jun
10

Still More Simpsons Stained Glass

“Sorry Homer, I was born a snake handler, and I’ll die a snake handler.” – Moe

The inimitable Joseph Cavalieri is back with three more haunting, bizarre, and downright fucking amazing stained glass panels featuring Simpsons characters.  The three form a coherent set, with Rainier Wolfcastle on one side, Lunchlady Doris on the other, and a oversize Jesus-Moe crucified in the middle. 

1.Military Cavalieri Simpsons (small) 1.Moe Cavalieri Simpsons (small) 1.Cafeteria Cavalieri Simpsons (small)
All images used under Creative Commons license courtesy of Joseph Cavalieri, CAVAglass.com.

Click on each picture to go to Cavalieri’s site and see a larger image, as well as descriptive text about each of the three.  I enjoy how Moe is surly enough to get crucified with his arms crossed. 

If you happen to be in Chicago in early November, you can see these things in person at the Sculpture Objects & Functional Art (SOFA – seriously, that’s their acronym) Fair from November 5th to November 7th.  Moe, Lunchlady Doris and Rainier Wolfcastle will be at the UrbanGlass booth. 

Thanks go to Cavalieri himself, for making these in the first place and being kind enough to notify us about them. 

21
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

And Maggie Makes Three2

“Homer, you should see a doctor.  I don’t think a healthy man can make that kind of smell.” – Carl

20
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

The Telltale Head5

“You know Bart, I’ve been kicked out of all four Space Mutant movies.” – Jimbo Jones

Happy birthday Tress MacNeille! 

19
Jun
10

Vitruvian Homer

“I’ve eaten eight different meats.  I’m a true renaissance man.” – Homer Simpson

A bunch of landscape architecture students from Florida International University won a sand castle competition in Miami with Homer laid out in Leonardo da Vinci’s “Vitruvian Man” pose:

Vitruvian Homer

Image shamelessly stolen from their Photobucket album, which has many more pictures. 

Congratulations and bravo, that is excellent.  If I ever need a landscape architect (note: highly unlikely) I will ask for an FIU alum.  My only complaint is that instead of letting his genitals hang out like in Da Vinci’s original, they covered Homer’s shame with a literal fig leaf.  If we can’t have sand wang on South Beach, where can we have it?

19
Jun
10

Quote of the Day

Much Apu About Nothing3

“Alright, here’s your last question.  What was the cause of the Civil War?” – Citizenship Test Guy
“Actually there were numerous causes, aside from the obvious schism between abolitionists and anti-abolitionists, economic factors, both domestic and international, played a significant-” – Apu Nahasapeemapetilon
“Hey, hey.” – Citizenship Test Guy
“Yeah?” – Apu Nahasapeemapetilon
“Just, just say ‘slavery’.” – Citizenship Test Guy
“Slavery it is, sir.” – Apu Nahasapeemapetilon




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