Reading Digest: DDoS Edition

Separate Vocations8

“I’ve got to get out of here . . . calm blue ocean, calm blue ocean, calm blue ocean, calm blue ocean.” – Ms. Hoover

WordPress suffered a rather large DDoS attack this week which I hadn’t even noticed until I went through the WordPress tags for “The Simpsons” and “Simpsons” looking for interesting links.  The number of posts with those two tags was about a fifth of what it usually is, and there are gaps of whole days, so I’m betting that got screwed up.  As a result, there’s a much shorter than usual Reading Digest this week.  But we do have a love note to Milhouse and all those like him, Harry Shearer bringing the pain, a compilation of all the stores in Springfield mall, and the love-hate relationship Knoxville has with The Simpsons.


Re: The Adventures of Game Progress Topic 3 – Reader Eric made Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week easy by editing together and e-mailing in this message board discussion about the precipitous decline in the show.  They’re listed here in chronological order:

  • 135813 – This starts things off by discussing the Futurama episode “A Head in the Polls”.   
  • 136503 – Here’s the same guy now comparing Futurama’s funny but somewhat predictable joke structure to the way The Simpsons would have a punchline just sneak up on you. 
  • 136539 – Here he’s pointing out how Zombie Simpsons beats jokes into your skull instead of trusting the audience, citing an example from the gay bar episode. 
  • 136577 – In reply to the author of the above comes one of the big reasons why The Simpsons was so damn good:

The commentaries often comment on the writing process, and how they went through rewrite after rewrite pretty much up until the day before it aired, and there were some jokes they cut because they were "only" funny the first thirty times, but stopped being funny the 31st time.

Many thanks to Eric for sending this in, and to Crawl and 1OOO and Captain Ladd Spencer for knowing good Simpsons when they see it. 

The Simpsons Springfield Mall Directory – Jeff over at good old Pleated Jeans has compiled a map for the Springfield Mall.  There’s quite a bit of Zombie Simpsons here, but it’s damned clever nevertheless (via). 

David Brooks’ dream world for the trust-fund set – Professional sycophant David Brooks wrote a novel.  PZ Myers reviewed it, and since he mentions Homer I’m allowed to link to this even though my primary purpose is to further the humiliation of David Brooks.  This critical writing at its best. 

Milhouse-ian Characters: An Appreciation – An essay about Milhouse and the various other loveable losers who are like him.  And it’s only slightly tainted by Zombie Simpsons. 

Comic Harry Shearer to Accuse National Media of Mythmaking at National Press Club – On Monday Shearer is going to tell the National Press Club what for.  They should probably listen to him, but I doubt they will. 

DVD Review: The Simpsons – Season 5 – I don’t need to add anything to this:

Listing its best episodes is a bit redundant as each and everyone one of them is great.  That’s not hyperbole, the product description alone rhymes off 13 classics and doesn’t even get to “Homer Goes to College,” “Secrets of a Successful Marriage,” or “Homer the Vigilante.”  Even the Marge and Lisa episodes were great back then with “Marge on the Lam” and “Lisa vs. Malibu Stacey.”

Simpson theme to grace Truro Cathedral – If you’re going to be in or around Truro, England this weekend, you can hear the themes from The Simpsons, Star Wars, and, oddly enough, Thunderbirds on an organ. 

March 4th, 2011 – Once something was on The Simpsons, it became irrevocably linked with it:

On the way to the train station, my desire to get out of the city for a while was reinforced by the actions of a pregnant lady. Transport For London now give ‘Baby On Board’ badges to mothers-to-be, so they can pop them on for tube journeys and everyone will know they’re fertile and would appreciate a little sit down. Aside from getting that song from The Simpsons in my head every time I see one of these badges, I think they’re a great idea. In theory.

The link is YouTube of the song, by the way. 

DONNIE BASEBALL – It’s a Don Mattingly rookie card and some YouTube to go with it.

Funny How: A Quick, Exhaustive Analysis of Why “Family Guy” Has Not Made Anyone Laugh In Years – Someone making the case, with copious Simpsons references, for why Family Guy should’ve stayed dead. 

The Sunsphere’s Grand Reopening Successfully Wigs Out – You can now rent out a couple of floors of the fabulous Sunsphere for special events, and to commemorate the opening, they had a wig themed party and band.  Awesome.

The Sunsphere Is Not a Wig Shop – The link above pointed me to this local Knoxville blog.  The title says it all. 

The Way-Back Machine Presents: 10 TV Shows That Wore Out Their Welcome! – Zombie Simpsons only checks in at #4, but it does contain this:

But mostly, The Simpsons seems more mean spirited than I remember and definitely has much more -ism fail than I can tolerate. It’s not awful like say – Family Guy, but I definitely find myself going, “Really? oh c’mon!”

Gob Bluth, for the win


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