Archive for April, 2010



27
Apr
10

Quote of the Day

Oh Brother, Where Art Thou3

“Okay Homer, pick out any one you want.” – Herb Powell
“Are you sure you want to give me a car?” – Homer Simpson
“Hey, you know what these things cost me?  There’s maybe forty bucks worth of steel in ’em.” – Herb Powell

26
Apr
10

Euro-Marge

Check out what a guy named Micky Hulse did to Europe:

Euro-Marge

The Spanish region of Galicia will hence forth be known as Boob Land. 

(via)

26
Apr
10

Jumping Sharks and Riding Whales

Chalkboard - The Squirt and the Whale

“Now, Henry Winkler, there’s a father.  Listen to what he told a close friend, ‘I don’t always keep my cool like the Fonz, but my love for my kids has given me plenty of happy days’.” – Selma Bouvier

While Homer was being menaced by sharks this week, I couldn’t help but think of that most damning of cultural epitaphs: jumped the shark.  Isn’t falling into the ocean from a magically conjured motorboat, getting hit in the head by a bucket (why a bucket?), and then being saved from sharks by riding a whale at least as bankrupt an idea as having a leather jacketed stunt double on water skies jump over a pen that has stock footage of a shark inside of it?  At the very least it’s in the same category.  Sadly, Happy Days went on for six more seasons after that fateful episode, let’s hope this one doesn’t take as long. 

Before that unimaginably boring ending, however, the writers had to reach deep into their bag of tricks to fill that ever more onerous 20 minute minimum.  There was a long couch gag, a 45-second montage, a completely pointless dream sequence, and an “action” sequence that finds the cartoon trope of circling shark fins new and exciting.  And even that wasn’t enough, so they had to kill some more time by having Homer regurgitate ideas that were too stupid to even be animated.  Also, it’s generally not a good idea when the actual event you’re basing a scene on is funnier than your cartoon version. 

I’d also like to commend the writers for dumping their opening plot line in an unusually abrupt manner, even by Zombie Simpsons standards.  The opening segment is often totally unrelated to the rest of the episode, but they don’t usually completely abandon a giant plot conflict (the whole electricity thing).  I’m not sure what’s keeping them from dropping all pretense and doing those segmented mini-story episodes every week.  

The numbers are in and they’re almost identical to last week’s: 5.94 million people tuned in an hour early for Family Guy last night.  That ties the number for 11th worst all time.  Since the 20th anniversary crap wore off, Season 21 has been down an average of half a million viewers from the same period of Season 20.  I’m going to keep saying this until someone listens: the show is getting historically low ratings.  The 20th anniversary stuff will save Season 21 from being the least watched ever, but more people than ever are simply ignoring this show. 

26
Apr
10

Quote of the Day

Bismarck, North Dakota

Image taken from Wikipedia.

“The capital of North Dakota is named after what German ruler?” – Grade School Challenge Host
“Hitler!” – Homer Simpson
“Hitler, North Dakota?” – Marge Simpson

25
Apr
10

Sunday Preview: “The Squirt and the Whale”

Happy Sunday, everyone. I’m afraid I have two pieces of bad news. First, there’s new Zombie Simpsons tonight. I know, I know, it hurts. Let’s get the description, courtesy of Simpsons Channel, out of the way:

The Simpson family erect a turbine in their back yard. When Homer realizes that some of the power from the turbine is directed for the local electric company, he removes their house from the grid. Meanwhile, a storm appears and Homer and Lisa try to save a 100-foot long whale, brought to shore by the storm.

Ha, “erect.” Seems to be a fairly obvious attempt to hop on the Earth Day gravy train (is there one?), because wind power is cool and like, everyone loves whales. I won’t even feign interest here; we all know it’s going to be dreadful, so why play coy?

The second piece of bad news is that Photoshop is being a piece of shit, so I can’t bloody up the promo pic per usual practice. Sorry, kind readers. You’ll have to live with an upside down promo pic instead. It’s truly a devastating day for all parties involved.

25
Apr
10

Quote of the Day

Lisa on Ice3

“Alright, I’m gonna make a little deal with you mugs.  I’m gonna let you all out to see my team play the hockey game, if you promise to return to your cells.” – Chief Wiggum
“Sorry, pig, we can’t make that promise.” – Snake
“Alright, alright, I’ll sweeten the deal.  You can see the game, you don’t have to come back, but you have to promise not to commit any more crimes.  Okay?” – Chief Wiggum
“No.” – Snake
“I’ll take that as a ‘Yes’.” – Chief Wiggum

Happy birthday Hank Azaria!

24
Apr
10

Compare & Contrast: Counterfeit Clothing

“Oh no, it’s Gloria Vanderbilt, out for revenge!” – Hired Goon

Near the end of “Chief of Hearts”, Fat Tony and the gang are counterfeiting clothing in the woods for some reason.  Homer and Wiggum are there for some other reason.  Homer and Wiggum then get thrown in the trunk for yet another reason.  While in the trunk, they have an earnest and humorless heart-to-heart moment that finally pushes their earnest and humorless plot line towards the finish line. 

As if to underscore how lazy this entire setup is, just about the only stab at comedy in the entire ending is Wiggum’s joke about the tire iron being what was poking him in the back.  Except that Wiggum was facing Homer, not the other way around.  That’s not normally the kind of thing I give a shit about, but there’s no reason other than sheer apathy for it to have been that way.  They could’ve put Homer behind Wiggum in the trunk, there was nothing stopping them.  But they didn’t even consider it. 

You Should Look Sad

This could not have been more than two script pages from the tire iron “joke”.

Compare all this to the ending of “The Springfield Connection”.  Here, too, we have a counterfeit clothing scheme to wrap up the plot.  The difference (other than that this one was fresh and Zombie Simpsons was recycling an idea) is that both of the elements that bring the story to a conclusion have been previously established.  We know that Homer gambles in the house with Herman (and that Herman ducks out for unexplained reasons), and we’ve seen Marge on the firing range doing target practice.  Moreover, even during the “suspense” parts, nearly every line or action is a joke of some kind, from Homer telling Marge to “sell the jeans and live like a queen”, to Marge’s exasperation at her back yard turning into a shooting gallery, to Herman’s “foiled by my own shoddy merchandise”.  Everything is played for humor and it all moves on quickly. 

Even Homer’s reconciliation with Marge, telling her that she’s a good cop, is played for a laugh when Homer immediately turns on her when he thinks Herman is getting away.  Not only does it take less time than Homer and Wiggum’s multiple makeup sessions in “Chief of Hearts”, but it’s done with comedy – not drama – in mind.  To top it all off, when things finally do end, everything returns to normal.  Marge quits the police (which she’d already grown disenchanted with) because of all the corruption, and no one had to act out of character to get things back to normal.  Wiggum and company remain self interested and dishonest, Marge remains incorruptible and upright. 

Zombie Simpsons perverts the essence of a long established character, lingers on contrived situations that are played for suspense, and ends with Homer and Wiggum being friends instead of returning things to the way they were.  The Simpsons has a long established character explore a new opportunity that fits right in with her personality, has a coherent story that never gets serious, and wraps things up neatly at the end. 




E-Mail

deadhomersociety (at) gmail

Run a Simpsons site or Twitter account? Let us know!

Twitter Updates

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Reruns

Useful Legal Tidbit

Even though it’s obvious to anyone with a functional frontal lobe and a shred of morality, we feel the need to include this disclaimer. This website (which openly advocates for the cancellation of a beloved television series) is in no way, shape or form affiliated with the FOX Network, the News Corporation, subsidiaries thereof, or any of Rupert Murdoch’s wives or children. “The Simpsons” is (unfortunately) the intellectual property of FOX. We and our crack team of one (1) lawyer believe that everything on this site falls under the definition of Fair Use and is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. No revenue is generated from this endeavor; we’re here because we love “The Simpsons”. And besides, you can’t like, own a potato, man, it’s one of Mother Earth’s creatures.