Archive for August, 2016

31
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Bart Gets an Elephant11

“So, isn’t that what we’re all asking in our own lives: where’s my elephant? I know that’s what I’ve been asking.” – Kent Brockman

30
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Hoodlums

“Miss Bouvier, while we were rescuing this boy, hoodlums made off with three bumper cars!” – Duff Gardens Security Guard

29
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Homer the Vigilante17

“And there she is: the world’s largest cubic zirconia.” – Principal Skinner
“What an eyesore!” – Moe

28
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

AmericasGreatestCitizen

“America’s greatest citizen, summed up in one piece of clothing” – Lisa Simpson
“Fonzie’s jacket!” – Homer Simpson

27
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

BigVirile

“Is this the one with the lazy sperm?” – C.M. Burns
“Mmm-hmm.” – Mr. Smithers
“Ah, Simpson! You big, virile son of a gun!” – C.M. Burns

Sorry for the late quote.

26
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Homer the Smithers14

“I’ll have my lunch, now: a single pillow of shredded wheat, some steamed toast, and a dodo egg.” – C.M. Burns
“But I think the dodo went extinct.” – Homer Simpson
“Get going! And answer those phones, install a computer system, and rotate my office so the window faces the hills.” – C.M. Burns
“Uh-huh, uh-huh, okay . . . um, can you repeat the part of the stuff where you said all about the things?” – Homer Simpson

25
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

In Marge We Trust18

“I’m in some hot soup here, Marge. Some teenagers are hanging out in front of the store. I think they could start slacking at any moment.” – Ned Flanders

24
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Deep Space Homer14

“Only one of you will be chosen to go into space, so the next few weeks will be a grueling series of tests to determine which one of you is most qualified.” – NASA Administrator
“Oh, and Mr. Gumble, for the duration of the training there’ll be no more beer.” – NASA Scientist
“What? Three whole weeks with only wine? I’ll go crazy!” – Barney Gumble

23
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Lard of the Dance7

“Attention, please, I need a volunteer for a thankless chore. . . . Shall I assume the only hand in the air is Lisa Simpson’s? Thank you, Lisa.” – Principal Skinner

22
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

The Last Temptation of Krust12

“Mom, these are at least two sizes too big.” – Lisa Simpson
“Perfect, you’ll grow into them.” – Marge Simpson
“When?” – Bart Simpson
“Oh, you’re both way overdue for a spurt.” – Marge Simpson

21
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

SexlessFreak

“Well, Seymour, it seems we’ve put together a baseball team. And I was wondering, who’s on first?” – Superintendent Chalmers
“Yes. Not the pronoun, but rather a player with the unlikely name of Who is on first.” – Principal Skinner
“Well that’s just great, Seymour, we’ve been out here six seconds and you’ve already managed to blow the routine! . . . Sexless freak.” – Superintendent Chalmers

20
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Sanctuary!

“Sanctuary! Sanctuary!” – Homer Simpson
“Oh, why did I teach him that word?” – Reverend Lovejoy

19
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

WatchYourCamera

“Australia was originally founded as a settlement for British convicts. . . . Lisa, watch your camera.” – Marge Simpson

18
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Duffless17

“Your license is hereby revoked! And you are to attend traffic school and two months of alconon meetings.” – Judge
“Your honer, I’d like that last remark stricken from the record.” – Homer Simpson
“No.” – Judge

17
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

ImprovStacy

“Look, Achy Breaky Stacy for a dollar ninety-nine!” – Little Girl #1
“Live from the Improv Stacy’s only eighty-nine cents!” – Little Girl #2
“Ewww.” – Little Girls

16
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Lisa the Iconoclast17

“You and your daughter ain’t welcome here no more! Barney, show ’em the exit.” – Moe
“There’s an exit?” – Barney Gumble

15
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Das Bus12

“…And Bingo was his name-o!” – Annoying Children
“Man, I don’t know why I bought this stupid tape.” – Otto

14
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

RestaurantPrisonRiot

“If it isn’t little Jimmy Pierson, class of ’71 I believe.” – Principal Skinner
“Good evening, Principal Skinner.” – Jimmy Pierson
“Pierson! Get this woman a glass of water immediately, and tuck in your shirt . . . Nearly thirty and still working as a busboy. I tell you, standardized testing never lies.” – Principal Skinner

13
Aug
16

Saturday Morning Cartoons

Lisa's Substitute14

“Mr. Bergstrom!” – Lisa Simpson
“Hi, Lisa!” – Mr. Bergstrom
“Hey! You don’t have to pay! Read the sign!” – Homer Simpson
“And this must be your father.” – Mr. Bergstrom

When people talk about “Lisa’s Substitute”, it’s usually to praise the emotionally pitch perfect ending. First, there’s Mr. Bergstrom’s devastating departure (“That’s the problem with being middle class, anybody who really cares will abandon you for those who need it more.”); and then there’s Homer’s bumbling but ultimately successful attempt to explain to Lisa that he does love her even if they both know she’s a lot smarter than him (“You’ll have lots of special people in your life, Lisa. There’s probably someplace where they all get together and the food is real good and guys like me are serving drinks.”). Like the rest of Season 2, however, there’s a lot more to that episode, and today I want to briefly highlight the way this one uses wordplay.

The opening scene provides a couple of great examples. As soon as Miss Hoover walks in crying, Lisa remarks to herself, “My God, she’s been dumped again.” From there it moves right into Skinner frankly explaining what Lyme disease is, blithely unaware that he’s traumatizing Hoover:

Lisa's Substitute13

Skinner: Lyme disease is spread by small parasites called ticks. When a diseased tick attaches itself to you and begins sucking your blood…
Hoover: Oh…
Skinner: …malignant spirochetes infest your bloodstream eventually spreading to your spinal fluid and on into the brain.
Hoover: The brain, oh, dear God!

The episode is full of exchanges that are just as fast. Here’s Bergstrom and Lisa two scenes later:

Lisa: Three, you seem to be of the Jewish faith.
Bergstrom: Are you sure I’m Jewish?
Lisa: Or Italian.
Bergstrom: I’m Jewish.

And here’s Bergstrom and Homer later at the museum:

Homer: Well, if she’s so wonderful, give her and A!
Bergstrom: I am giving her an A!
Homer: Great, but don’t tell her it was a favor to me. Tell her she earned it.
Bergstrom: Mr. Simpson, she did earn it!
Homer: You are smooth, I’ll give you that.

Repartee like that – witty, two sided, and very fast – was one of the many comedy tools that The Simpsons could use that other shows of the time simply couldn’t. Exchanges like the ones above, even Lisa’s little aside about Hoover getting dumped, don’t work with a laughtrack.

Beyond that, animation also allows rapid fire cuts that augment the dialogue without becoming disorienting. There are five lines between Homer and Bergstrom above, but the scene actually has seven cuts, including a reaction shot from Lisa that takes less than a second. The scene would still work without that, but it works better with the imagery reinforcing the banter.

GivingHerAnA

They were smooth, I’ll give them that.

13
Aug
16

Quote of the Day

Stapler

“I’m sorry. I guess watching me isn’t any more exciting than being me.” – Homer Simpson




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