Archive for September, 2014

30
Sep
14

Behind Us Forever: Clown in the Dumps

Homer Goes to College15

“My first day of college.  I wish my father was alive to see this.” – Homer Simpson
“Hey!” – Abe “Grampa” Simpson
“How long have you been back there?” – Homer Simpson
“Three days.” – Abe “Grampa” Simpson

(Sorry for not getting this up yesterday.  The day got away from me.)

Season 26 picked up right where season 25 left off: a time eating guest couch gag, many needlessly self voiced celebrities, characters explaining how they feel and what they’re doing, and plenty of other boring nonsense.  The A-plot was about Krusty being sad and involved the much hyped character death, which turned out to be the nothingburger we all expected.  (The fact that the media is so easily and repeatedly trolled by Zombie Simpsons may be the funniest thing about the show these days.)

The B-plot was about Lisa being worried about Homer’s health all of a sudden.  We know this because she basically narrates the whole thing for us, including how she’s feeling and the ending that was already nonsensical before the school bus crashes into the Simpson back yard.

– Count me among those who generally like the guest couch gags.  It’s nice to get something new and interesting, and since the writing staff doesn’t have to do any plot or dialogue, they’re often very decent.  But this one was pretty bad.  It was a decent concept and had a neat look to it, but it took way too long given how little actually happened and how repetitive the images were.

– This popcorn thing is really dumb.  It was also done much, much better in “Realty Bites”.

– “Cheap to Produce” was at least quick.

– Ugh, this Wiggum crime photo thing.  I thought the Family Guy stuff was going to be during their episode.

– Hey, look: crappy jokes, self voiced celebrities, and canned laughter.

– “Nobody warned me this roast would treat me the same way as every roast I’ve seen and laughed at.” – Unnecessary exposition rolled up with a cheap excuse for the idiot nonsense they just made us sit through.  Stuff like this really demonstrates how much the show has deteriorated.  Krusty knows what a roast is.  It’d be fine to have the roast get to him, bum him out, etc.  Instead, he acts depressed and surprised from the get go because Heaven forefend characters and the story might move along in reaction to what happens rather than just because.

– That swapper joke could’ve been funny if it had made sense.

– Hey, look, Bart just showed up out of nowhere to tell Krusty what to do.  Seamless.

– This is certainly a pointless death scene.

– And now it’s time for a funeral that improbably includes the Simpson family.

– Hey, the B-plot showed up.  I’ll let Lisa explain, “Dad, I’m worried about your health.  I don’t want to lose you.”

– Remember when they only included Sideshow Bob when they had something really great and fun to do?  Long time ago, that.

– “No mimes!” is a decent sign gag.

– And “The elephant and I had our differences” is pretty good.  It’s also short, understated, and unexplained.  Not a coincidence.

– Is it technically an Itchy & Scratchy cartoon if Itchy’s not in it?

– Oh, for fuck’s sake, “Kids, I’m experiencing a crisis of conscious.”

– This is a cruel waste of Maurice LaMarche as the TV critic.

– Lisa’s back to explain what’s happening in the B-plot again.

– Did David Hyde Pierce just wander past the recording room one day?  That might have been even more pointless than the Sideshow Bob cameo.

– Past Krusty shows were a lot better when they were about collective bargaining agreements.

– Similarly, Krusty’s binges used to be more fun.  They even had the Stanley Cup.

– “Krusty, have you fulfilled the promise you made to your father in the dream you never told anyone about?”  Even by their cheat standards that’s lazy.  They weren’t even painted into a corner or anything, they just can’t move things forward without explicitly telling us what’s going on.  Then Bart appeared out of nowhere.

– And now Homer is wrapped in bubble wrap, then there was a car crash and then Lisa explained, out loud, how she was feeling for the fifth time or so.  Mercifully, this B-plot is now over.

– Bart apparently knew who Krusty’s dad’s favorite rabbi was.  No, it doesn’t make any sense.  But at least it was short.

– Oof, the “Jewish Heaven” song is really weak.  There are like three lyrics, most of which are just “Jewish Heaven”, and the rest is just visual references of famous Jews.

Anyway, the ratings are in and they are much improved.  Last night, 8.50 million people lost hope after the FXX marathon reminded them how good the show once was.  That’s way up from last year’s premier, though at least some of that is attributable to the Eagles-49ers game.  It’ll be curious to see whether or not that holds up next week when FOX doesn’t have a late NFL game.  Was it mostly football, or did all that hype actually make a few million people want to start watching the show again?

30
Sep
14

Quote of the Day

Homer's Barbershop Quartet14

“Hey, Barney, what’ll it be?” – Moe
“I’d like a beer, Moe.” – Barney Gumble
“I’d like a single plum, floating in perfume, served in a man’s hat.” – Japanese Conceptual Artist
“Here you go.” – Moe

29
Sep
14

Quote of the Day

Bart's Girlfriend15

“With the way you’re treating me, why should I protect you?” – Bart Simpson
“Because, if you tell, no one will believe you.  Remember, I’m the sweet, perfect minster’s daughter, and you’re just yellow trash.” – Jessica Lovejoy

Happy birthday Gabor Csupo!

28
Sep
14

Sunday Preview: Clown in the Dumps

Clown_in_the_Dumps_promo_2

A Springfield resident dies. Also, Krusty retires after he’s offended by a comedy cable channel roast of him, and Lisa tries to protect Homer from getting hurt.

Welcome everyone to season 26. We are going to kick off with the much talked about ‘death of a recurring character who is voiced by an actor who won an Emmy for the character but it’s not anyone important blah blah blah’ episode for which we have all been waiting.  Also some other things are going to happen. I can’t decide what thing I care less about, but that’s because they are all equally meaningless to me.

Also tonight is the Family Guy / Simpsons Crossover, which is technically a Family Guy episode, so I am not obligated to write anything about it here.

 

 

28
Sep
14

Quote of the Day

The Principal and the Pauper6

“In honor of Seymour’s twentieth year as principal, we’ve decided to hold a surprise tribute Friday night.” – Superintendent Chalmers
“It’s my twentieth year, too.” – Groundskeeper Willie
“The teachers’ lounge is for teachers, Willie.” – Superintendent Chalmers

27
Sep
14

Quote of the Day

Bart the Mother6

“Hi, I’m Troy McClure, you may remember me from such nature films as ‘Earwigs: Eww’, and ‘Man vs. Nature: The Road to Victory’.” – Troy McClure

26
Sep
14

Reading Digest: Flock of Vultures and Parasites Edition

Kamp Krusty19

“Is it true you attempted suicide when you heard the news?” – Vulture #1
“Are you and Princess Di just friends?” – Vulture #2
“You people make me sick!  You’re vultures!  Where were you when I sang at Farm Aid?  Out of my way, you parasites!  I said out of my way!” – Krusty the Klown

This week we’ve got four (count’ em four!) links to Vulture, which is doing yeoman’s work to promote the new season of Zombie Simpsons, which starts, ugh, on Sunday.  The first one is by far the most interesting, but all of them have their moments, even if those moments serve as yet more evidence that nobody cares about Zombie Simpsons.

Other than that, this is a pretty short Reading Digest because the ever obsequious entertainment press is pimping both the Family Guy crossover and this goofy stunt about a character dying as hard as they possibly can.  There’s no point to any of it, so I didn’t link any of it.  There are some other lists and .gifs and the usual what-have-you, of course, but the marketing machine was at full power this week and that always screws up the signal-to-noise ratio.

Enjoy.

David Silverman on 8 Early Simpsons Sketches – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week is this guided tour of some very early sketches, including from “Bart the Genius”, “Life on the Fast Lane”, and a Butterfinger commercial.  Really cool.

Simpsons Showrunners on the ‘Classic Era’ Myth – The headline for this interview with Jean, Mirkin and Selman is a little misleading in that they only mention their “myth” a little near the end.  As per usual, the Soviet fiction of “the show is still good” is officially maintained while almost all the examples they cite are from single digit seasons.  The intro even contains this:

Matt Selman is arguably the greatest Simpsons writer of the latter seasons, and many of the newer episodes on our list of the 100 best were written or co-showrun by him.

Talk about damning with faint praise!

28 Simpsons Quotes Every Fan Must Know – Our next Vulture link pretty much proves what I’m talking about above.  There are 28 quotes.  One (1) is from Zombie Simpsons (and it’s Season 16, which ain’t exactly recent in its own right).

Hank Azaria on 5 of His Many Simpsons Voices – And our final link from them is Azaria talking about some of the voices he does.  There’s nothing really new here, but it’s kinda neat, and he repeats what he’s said before about how he really has no new voices to do, whereas he used to do tons of new ones.

“Land of Chocolate” by Alf Clausen – Fear Alf Clausen’s terrible gaze:

Hank Azaria As Chief Wiggum Sings “Let It Go” – Azaria went on the Conan O’Brien show and they talked about the Hollywood Bowl thing.

Miley Cyrus Wears Her Love Of ‘The Simpsons’ On Her Sleeve—You Can, Too – I feel dirty just for linking to this, but it’s an MTV link about a (probably paid promotional) celebrity selfie to flog Itchy & Scratchy pajamas.  MTV is so naked about their sales job that they actually wrote this:

Drop Dead has developed a boutique Itchy & Scratchy Show collection in conjunction with Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products featuring iconic Simpsons characters.

The name “MTV News” has never been synonymous with high journalistic standards (or really, any journalistic standards), but I find it hilarious that they actually bothered to use the full name “Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products”.  Did they copy and paste it directly from the press e-mail they got?

Kevin Cuneo: Golden age of ‘Simpsons’ flew by – A columnist old enough to have kids in their 20s laments the death of the show.  Please refer to this the next time someone tells you people outgrew the show and that’s why they say it sucks now.  This guy was an adult from start to finish, and he can see how crappy the new ones are.

‘The Simpsons’ Outfit Grids by Bryan Espritu – Nice touch giving Barney his jumbo thong bikini.

The City of New York Vs. Homer Simpson, 17 Years Later: Gothamist – A quick look back at the Twin Towers episode that morons pulled from syndication for a few years.

10 of Our Favorite Quotes from ‘The Simpsons’ – Nary a trace of Zombie Simpsons, and plenty of good YouTube.

Our 10 Favorite Simpsons Moments – From the same site as the above, there is a Zombie Simpsons one in here, but it’s surrounded by the acknowledgement that it was a “bad era”.

The Simpsons Family Book Comes Out Next Week! – There is a new reference book.  That is all.

Round 127: Love, Springfieldian Style vs. Homer Goes to College – First up, Nebel’s exclusive interview with the Pope.

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons homer simpson… – A reversed one of Homer’s attempt at breakfast catching fire.

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons money make… – Money fight!

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons surprised homer… – The suckers’ll think it’s beer nuts.

Culture Shock Part II: The things you watch – I learned something today:

While consuming my regular intake of The Simpsons (Les Simpsons) I noticed another thing that brought up some questions about French broadcasting. The good ole’ Duff beer Homer J. Simpson was enjoying was blurred out! What the Duff!? After raising the question of why, I was informed that in France there is no alcohol promotion allowed whatsoever.

The Simpsons Took the Bowl – And finally, one last recap of the Hollywood Bowl show, one that happens to agree with us:

I was fairly worried that if they were trying to encapsulate the last 25 years of the show, I might be bored during the numbers I didn’t know, but if there was a song created on the show in the last ten years, I didn’t hear it. What I did hear were most of the greats over the show’s early run.

No, I’m not still jealous, why do you ask?




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