Reading Digest: Frozen Electoral Fraud Edition

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“Lisa, you got a letter.” – Marge Simpson
“It’s from my pen pal, Anya.” – Lisa Simpson
“Dear Lisa, as I write this I am very sad.  Our president has been overthrown and-” – Anya
“-replaced, by the benevolent General Krull.  All hail Krull and his glorious new regime!  Sincerely, little girl.” – General Krull

Russia is having itself an election on Sunday, and earlier this week allegations emerged in Canada, the world’s other giant frozen country, that the current Prime Minister may have taken a few liberties with the last election.  We’ve got links for both, though, befitting the disparate levels of shenanigans, the Russian one is much, much better.  There’s also a new Simpsons video game, a YouTube video of FOX wasting some money, the final few remnants of the 500th episode stuff, a New Orleans street performer, and the last hurrah for a college basketball rivalry that Grampa Simpson would appreciate.


An Ode To The Simpsons – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the week comes from a blog called “Dinosaur Boner”, which is tumescently awesome.  It’s a thoughtful, heartfelt, and amusing look at the show and how it has declined.  Not only does it agree with us:

Nothing is meant to last though, and The Simpsons are not immune to that. After about season 12, the jokes and story telling took a nose dive. Every good idea had been used up by then. You can only do so many things with the same characters before a show goes stale.

But it takes plenty of whacks at that self evidently substandard “At Long Last Leave” episode:

– The last joke of the show was ok. Everyone in Springfield ends up following the Simpsons to their new squatter town (The Outlands), but they leave Principle Skinner behind. He looked sad and it was funny. Oh, but then they go and drag it out after a few of the credits run, kinda ruining it.

They do that a lot.  The whole thing is worth reading.

Help Spot The References: Viral Video Mocks Putin Era – This time lapse video of Vladimir Putin in advance of Sunday’s – ahem – election is great:

I only got the bigger references (Khodorkovsky, Beslan, Basayev, that submarine), but there’s a ton of stuff here.  Medvedev gets it particularly bad.  ПРЕВОСХОДНЫЙ!  (That’s what rustran.com gave me for “Excellent”.)

The Simpsons Celebrate New Episodes with Homer Sculpture – Fox released this little YouTube video about a bust of Homer they commissioned:

Check out Jean at the 0:15 mark, “FOX is erecting a bust of Homer in honor of the 500th episode, and I’ve been told if we do another 500 we’ll get a torso.”  Not my preferred course of action, of course, but the way he said cracked me up.

JIM FALL: Despite what I expected, the sun came up Sunday – For business reasons, the universities of Kansas and Missouri will no longer be in the same athletic conference next year.  This means that a rivalry that goes back to guns and bloodshed before the Civil War will become less heated, less frequent, and generally less interesting.  It also means that Kansas won’t have much call to do this at home basketball games:

In Allen Fieldhouse to this day, at least until last Saturday, they still hyped their fans into a frenzy with video clips from “The Outlaw Josey Wales” proclaiming their being “jayhawkers, and proud of it,” and Grandpa Simpson explaining that his flag has only 49 stars because “I’ll be deep in the cold, cold ground before I recognize Missouri.”

Awesome.  I had no idea they did that.

SPRINGFIELD TRAINING – Omar Vizquel has been invited to the Blue Jays’ spring training camp, and this guy took a look at that through the lens of being in a twenty year old joke on The Simpsons, and he included this:

It’s tough work maintaining excellence over 23 years … just look at The Simpsons. Sure, Springfield’s first family recently passed 500 episodes and are still steaming on. But is the show as incisive, inventive and downright hilarious as in its heyday of the 1990s? Unfortunately, not by a long shot.

Got that right.  Good luck, Mr. Vizquel.

Top 10 goalie masks in the NHL – The Canadiens goalie with Flanders on his mask is #10.

Who holds back the electric car? Not the Stonecutters – Excellent usage from this report at the Canadian International Autoshow:

Homer Simpson — yes, that Homer Simpson — was once a member of the Stonecutters, a secret society made up of Springfield residents.

Though it happened way back in season six of the show, I can’t help but remember the Stonecutters’ “We do” chant. As a matter of fact, I sometimes catch myself singing the tune: “Who holds back the electric car? Who makes Steve Guttenberg a star?”

TOWIE’s Billie Faiers dresses up as Marge Simpson for Mario Falcone’s birthday party – I’ll leave it to readers who are more familiar than I am with the relative popularity of British television shows to determine whether or not this is actually noteworthy, but that is a pretty damn good Marge costume.

Benefit concert to raise money for Hineburg man battling ALS – Well, it looks like we’ve found another band named after The Simpsons:

The show featuring local groups Phill ‘n the Blanks and Sideshow Bob runs from 5:30-midnight Saturday at the Hampton Inn in Colchester.

That’s in Vermont, by the way.

Parenting Level: Homer Simpson – Screen grabs of Homer offering brownies and showing off his chainsaw and hockey mask.  Surprisingly fun to scroll through.

Editorial: Robocall narrative perilous for the Tories – The Edmonton Journal thinks Stephen Harper might be developing a credibility gap:

The danger is not that the overall election result will be called into question, or even that there will be an upwelling of support for an opposition party in the short term. Rather, it’s the contribution the story makes to a gradually accumulating negative reputation – a reputation of being willing to do and say anything to win – that could ultimately undermine Canadians’ trust and general comfort with a Harper government in power.

In a certain prime-time animated television show, one of the central jokes is trickster Bart Simpson’s automatic denial “I didn’t do it.” Bart’s problem is that even when he is innocent, no one believes him. To this day, former U.S. president Richard Nixon is remembered as Tricky Dick, and as the leader of a party with a culture of chicanery, as much as he is for ending the Vietnam War and for normalizing relations with Communist China.


Marge Simpson mosaic table top. – This is from a Yelp review of a BGR The Burger Joint franchise in Washington D.C.:

BGR The Burger Joint - Marge Simpson Mosaic Tablel

I’ve no idea if the food is any good, but that table top is pretty damn cool.

Alternatively, Milou5e – I get it, and it’s kinda funny, but I could definitely see that as a phase Milhouse goes through on his way to paunchy middle management.

Oh Look – It’s Smarch – The differences between March and Smarch:

Sure, many call it March.  Me?  No way.  Maybe if March was as predicatble as February or January, I might change my attitude.  I think “Smarch” perfectly sums up the antics of this tease of a month.

Here’s the thing: March plays around.  March flirts with spring, but keeps cozy with winter.  March lets you think there will be no more snow one minute, and then presents you with bucket loads of it the next.

March, for lack of a better term, is a bit of a hussy.


The 2012 Academy Awards…In 10 Words – Nah, I won’t watch even if Billy Crystal’s involved.

A 10 Word Tribute to Davy Jones – Ewww!

It’s time for a list!: English Stereotypes – The fifth one on here is bad teeth, along with the image I slapped together for this quote back in 2010.  I’ve seen that same image on a few other websites since, and it appears in the first page of Google image results if you search for “British smiles”.  If this blog has accomplished nothing else (and it hasn’t), it did do that.

Simpsons Cake WIN – That can’t possibly be a real cake . . . and yet maybe it is.

Road Trip Randomness #1202252 – I’ll just let this picture of a New Orleans street performer dressed as a drunken, nearly naked Homer speak for itself.

The finest geek TV marriage proposals – Homer and Marge make the list here, but they use a shot of him slipping on the onion ring instead of his actual proposal wherein she read a card while he inadvertently stuck his ass in her face.

Homer Simpson – Cartoon Quotes goes with one of Homer’s occasional forays into cross dressing.

What good is money if it can’t inspire terror in your fellow man? – A short collection of some great Burns quotes.

The Simpsons – You know those grotesque early years dolls with the giant plastic heads?  Someone loved them:

If you’ve ever held this 90s toy (and it’s okay if you haven’t, that means you were probably normal, as opposed to an almost-four-year-old girl with a prized Bart Simpson doll), just know that its head is abnormally huge and heavy. I found an image, though there was no credit (apparently, no one wants to be associated with this terrible thing)


Who decided it was a good idea to have that large of a head, made entirely of plastic, on a small, plush body? WHO?!

Click through for the frightening picture.

Appointment Viewing: February 27-March 4 – Lenny previewing Sunday’s Zombie Simpsons:

8:00 – The Simpsons (Fox): Bart plasters unflattering graffiti images of Homer all over Springfield. They catch the eyes of established street artists Shepard Fairey, Ron English, Kenny Scharf and Robbie Conal, who catch him in the act, and they invite him to exhibit his work at a gallery show of his own. Meanwhile, a new health-food superstore threatens to put the Kwik-E-Mart out of business. Look, I used to be a teenage girl, so I know what it’s like to desperately want to be cool. But, it’s not edgy to know about street artists if said street artists were in a documentary that my father recommended to me a year ago.


D’Oh! Rebuild Springfield with ‘The Simpsons: Tapped Out’ on iOS – That game I mentioned last week has been released.  I have no idea if it’s any good, but there’s a YouTube ad at the link and you can get it from iTunes.

Zombies Show the Limits of Our Ethics – Apparently someone is taking a zombie apocalypse as a serious philosophical hypothetical, which leads to excellent usage:

My favorite zombie moment may be from a Halloween episode of The Simpsons.   Zombies have overrun the city of Springfield.  The Simpson clan, led by a shotgun-armed homer, flee their house.  As they approach their car, their neighbor and Homer’s nemesis Flanders appears and, if memory serves, says something about nibbling Homer’s ear.  Homer blows him away.  “Dad, you killed Zombie Flanders!” Bart says, astonished.  “He was a zombie?” Homer asks.

The scene is funny because in the real world of The Simpsons, Homer despises Ned Flanders and is obsessively resentful of Flanders’ success, life, and happiness.  He wouldn’t kill Flanders, not in any normal circumstance, but then a zombie apocalypse ain’t normal.  It’s a disaster that’s not part of “the plan,” as the Joker in The Dark Knight would say, and so people panic and forsake their morals to an extent they wouldn’t when faced with a horror that at least makes sense in light of history or normalcy.

Bart actually says “the Zombie Flanders”, but other than that it’s right on.  Sadly, as far as The Simpsons goes, the zombie apocalypse is already upon us.

Life Imitates The Simpsons, Campaign Edition – The Simpsons analogy here is a bit of a stretch, but only a bit, plus there’s YouTube.

The Republican Al Gore – Speaking of Mitt Romney, this is excellent usage:

All these words about Romney apply equally to the man Democrats nominated in 2000. It’s no wonder that when a character on The Simpsons got a talking Al Gore doll, when you pulled the string it said, “You are hearing me talk”—the perfect comment on Gore’`s inability to bypass his listeners’ awareness of the calculation behind an interaction.

That link on “got” is you YouTube of said quote.

As Good as It Gets (1997) – This is a review of that long ago Jack Nicholson movie, but it does contain this nice aside:

Plus it was from James L. Brooks, who I was aware from The Simpsons (still in its period of greatness).

That Was The Week That Was – And finally, yet another person who agrees with us:

And finally… My favorite TV show of all time, The Simpsons, recently marked its 500th (500th!) [500th!!!!] episode. I came *this* close to going back through my collection of DVDs (only through season 9, if you please) for the umpteenth time in order to produce the perfect top ten list of greatest episodes or scenes.

Through Season 9 is fine by me.

6 Responses to “Reading Digest: Frozen Electoral Fraud Edition”

  1. 2 March 2012 at 4:32 pm

    My golden retriever LOVED those plastic/stuffed Simpsons. We had a whole set…I guess they’d been at a secondhand store or something (quite quickly too, because that would have been 1993-4 I think). Eyeless Maggies all the way. Some things you don’t forget.

  2. 2 Josh
    2 March 2012 at 5:10 pm

    Oh hey Charlie, just wanted to mention the Parenting Level Homer Simpson link leads to http://9gag.com/random

    I’m guessing it was a mistake unless its something ironic I haven’t figured out.

    • 3 Charlie Sweatpants
      2 March 2012 at 5:25 pm

      Fixed. Thanks. I didn’t notice it at first, but they’ve got one of those overly cute page designs (probably intended to maximize pageviews) that puts the automatically copied URL as “random” instead of the actual URL. Javascript is a terrible thing in the wrong hands.

  3. 3 March 2012 at 7:54 am

    Thanks for the wonderfully ingenious mention! :D

  4. 5 D.N.
    3 March 2012 at 7:07 pm

    Speaking of electoral fraud, the other day on The HuffPo, I came across an article entitled, “Republican Faces Investigation After Registering Dog To Vote,” and the first thing I thought of was, “Even the PET CEMETERY voted for Bob!!!”

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