26
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

Lisa on Ice15

“I think women should be able to play any sport men play, but hockey is so violent and dangerous. Look at Milhouse’s teeth.” – Marge Simpson
“Mom, will you stop showing us those.” – Bart Simpson

25
Jul
16

Sunday Evening Cartoons

“Actually, I was wondering if you were free for a little get together tonight: dinner, dancing, and Mr. Tom Jones.” – C.M. Burns

NOTE: I wrote this last night, but couldn’t post it because I’m in the middle of moving and don’t have internet at home right now. It is awful.

On one of the DVD commentary tracks (can’t remember which episode), Jean (or someone similar) starts talking about the sound effects and how on a cartoon you’re always starting with silence. A live action show has ambient noises, even if it’s just something as anodyne as rustling a newspaper or putting something down on a table. With a cartoon, though, you have to create everything from scratch.

“Marge Gets a Job” is an excellent example of how they did just that. The episode is full of teeny background noises that sometimes augment the spoken jokes and are sometimes jokes of their own. Consider the scene near the end where Burns invites Marge to dinner with Tom Jones. First there’s a wet “squish” as Burns grabs his Scalp Wax, then a rubbery “squeak” as he applies it, then a “squeak-bang” as his freshly waxed head slips through his hand and crashes on his desk. Each one is carefully balanced between the loud exaggerations of Looney Tunes and the softer sounds of a real life performance, and they build together to Burns slapstick head bonk.

ScalpWax

Just a few seconds later there’s a similar sequence. First we hear Burns get an authoritative “click” from the button he presses. Then we hear the Bond villain, mechanical whir of the false wall opening to reveal the recently kidnapped Tom Jones. Then we not only see Smithers press the gun into Jones’s back, there’s a quick “crunch” sound as well to let us know that he’s got the gun jammed hard into Jones. Finally, we get another button “click” (this one off screen, and even though we can’t see it, we know what’s being done), another mechanical whir, and the satisfying “thunk” as the door knocks Jones cold.

BigSmilesEverybodysHappy

And those are just two examples. There’s also the slide-crash of Surley Joe’s level, the impersonal clacking of the train doors as Burns’s goons toss Jack Marley on a literal scrap heap at his own retirement party, the skull piercing “LOUD” noise on Krusty’s show, and many more. Some of these are loud, some of them are quiet. Some of them accompany something we see on screen, others audibly describe things off screen. But they’re all tuned perfectly and the episode is that much richer and funnier for it.

25
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

And Maggie Makes Three20

“That new baby in your mother’s womb was a ticking time bomb threatening to blow this family eight ways from Sunday! . . . Hey, where are you going?” – Homer Simpson
“Dad, you can’t expect a person to sit for thirty minutes straight.” – Bart Simpson
“I’m gonna get a snack and maybe go to the bathroom.” – Lisa Simpson

24
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

The Mansion Family6

“It’s nothing serious. Just lay off the chili and you should be fine.” – Doctor

23
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

Selma's Choice17

“Aunt Gladys was right, there’s something missing in our lives.” – Selma Bouvier
“Don’t worry, we’ll get that barking dog record tomorrow.” – Patty Bouvier

22
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

BradGoodmanInnerChild

“What made you yell out that remark? . . . You just wanted to express yourself, yes?” – Brad Goodman
“I do what I feel like.” – Bart Simpson
“That’s marvelous, I couldn’t have put it better myself. I do what I feel like. People, this young man here is the inner child I’ve been talking about.” – Brad Goodman
“What?” – Lisa Simpson

Happy birthday, Albert Brooks!

21
Jul
16

Quote of the Day

Brush with Greatness14

“You’re so supportive. I wish every teacher was like you!” – Marge Simpson
“Marge, please. I don’t take praise very well!” – Professor Lombardo

Happy birthday, Jon Lovitz!




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