Posts Tagged ‘Luca$


Quick Note on the Zombification of Patty & Selma

Homer vs Patty & Selma11

“When are you going to wake up and smell your husband, Marge?” – Selma Bouvier
“Granted, you got some kids out of him, but when the seeds have been planted you throw away the envelope.” – Patty Bouvier

My apologies, but there isn’t going to be a Compare & Contrast this week.  My stupid real job threw up a bolt-from-the-blue minor crisis this week that is just now finally squared away, and I don’t have the energy to get my brains back into an episode I’ve already largely forgotten.  However, there was one thing that’s been bugging me about “Luca$”: what the hell was with Patty and Selma in that scene in the kitchen with Marge?

They’re sitting at the table watching Lisa and the would-be-competitive eater Lucas in the back yard.  Patty jokes that he’s fat, Marge says she’s surprised Lisa likes him, Patty then says:

Really?  Justin Blobber over there doesn’t remind you of anyone?

That leads to a quick cut of Homer yelling and complaining, which leads to Selma explaining the plot to everyone:

Women marry their fathers, Marge.  So you just might be meeting your future ton-in-law!

Then they both happily cackle at Lisa’s fate.  It doesn’t bother me that the twins are being mean to the kid, but by extension they’re also gleefully bagging on Lisa, which is just weird.  Patty and Selma hate Homer, and who could blame them?  (Would you want your baby sister married to him?)  But they’ve always been fond, even proud, of Lisa.  Here they’re basically saying to Marge: you married  fat loser and so will your precious daughter, ha ha.  They want Lisa to marry someone like Homer just to teach Marge a lesson or something, and it’s utterly contrary to everything we know about them.

Characters devolving into unrecognizable goo isn’t anything new for Zombie Simpsons.  And it’s not like anyone put too much thought into that scene in the first place.  But it goes to show how really empty and hollow this show has left so many once rich characters.  Patty and Selma, for all their flaws, were always on Marge’s side.  Here they’re not, and they’re attacking her through Lisa.  It’s really bad, even for Zombie Simpsons.


Behind Us Forever: Luca$

Chalkboard - Luca$

“Where is Homer, anyway?” – Selma Bouvier
“It’s so typical of the big doofus to spoil it all.” – Patty Bouvier
“What, Aunt Patty?” – Lisa Simpson
“Oh, nothing, dear, I’m just trashing your father.” – Patty Bouvier
“Well, I wish you wouldn’t.  Because, aside from the fact that he has the same frailties as all human beings, he’s the only father I have.  Therefore he is my model of manhood, and my estimation of him will govern the prospects of my adult relationships.  So I hope you bear in mind that any knock at him is a knock at me, and I am far too young to defend myself against such onslaughts.” – Lisa Simpson
“Mmmhmm, go watch your cartoon show, dear.” – Patty Bouvier 

After I finished watching this episode, I went to the end and began rewinding.  Lucas, the kid who Lisa briefly sorta liked and whose dialogue appeared to be stuff that was rejected from Zach Galifianakis’ part in a draft for Hangover 4, appears in the very last scene.  It had been so long since we saw him that I wasn’t even sure when he’d gone missing.  Reversing, it turns out that he had been gone since literally the halfway mark of the episode.  The show didn’t completely forget him, there was that final, tacked on scene, but he was so pointless and shallow that they literally didn’t need him for most of the second act and all of the third.  Jebus.  The dropouts at Hollywood Upstairs Screenwriting College think that’s sloppy.

Besides a forgettably shallow guest voice, what else did “Luca$” have?  Exposition.  Lots and lots and lots of exposition.  In the B-plot, Snake kept stealing stuff for Bart, which we didn’t see, then he got arrested, which we didn’t see, and then Bart went to get him out of jail, which we did see but which was practically narrated for us, including such sparkling dialogue as:

“But, Chief, we got guns!  He’s got a little wrench.”

“You won’t need to save me a third time.”

“If I get caught, it’s suicide by cop.”

“It means I get you to shoot me.”

The A-plot, meanwhile, suffered from the same repetitive problem, but managed a big swing and a miss on the ending, where they wrapped up the wrong plot thread.  Marge was supposed to be worried about Lisa seeing Homer as a bad example for future romantic partners, but that quickly devolved into Homer being upset with her about it, which meant that the ending was about Homer forgiving Marge, making Lisa’s whole presence something of an afterthought.  That the big gag was that Marge wore a dress from when they drew her into Project Runway didn’t help, nor Jimbo at the bar or the overall weird and creepiness of Homer and Lisa going on a “date”.  The quote above from Season 1 contains basically every idea the A-plot fumbled, and it didn’t forget any characters in the middle either.

– Slapping “Parodies Are Easy” on the couch gag is maybe a bit more revealing than they think.

– Why did Nelson run up the playground in a baseball uniform?

– Repeating the word “Senator” should kill some time.

– Skinner chasing Bart in his car is, uh, somewhat dumber than “The Boy Who Knew Too Much”.

– Milhouse gets an aside to complain about the “fat kid with a dream”.  They really have no idea how to write dialogue anymore.  Even inside the cafeteria what passes for jokes has to come from asides and random breaks in what’s actually happening.

– Nice that this kid just happens to have tupperware full of hot dogs in the cafeteria.

– “Liberated, you mean stolen?” Thanks, exposition Milhouse.

– “Then that makes me the Jackie Robinson of the sport, and you are the racist Philadelphia manager.”/”Quit comparing me to Ben Chapman” – Jokes work so much better when explained beforehand.  It’s comedy 101, everyone knows that.

– “Women marry their fathers, Marge” – In case anyone was unclear what was going on, it has now been explained to us.

– The montage of stolen things ate up some time.

– Is all of Galifianakis’ dialogue going to be him telling us what he’s eating?  (Amusing side note: my spell checker’s only suggestion for his name was “Egalitarianism”.)

– “Careful it’s uncut syrup”, hmmm, haven’t I seen Bart and Milhouse mainline Squishee syrup before?  Nah, this feels too original and believable.

– “You ratted him out!” – And for approximately the fortieth time in just  thirteen minutes of video, things have been explained to the audience yet again.

– Professional freelance writer as an advice authority is kinda funny.  Of course, it’s also one of the few jokes that happen within the dialogue and aren’t about explaining what’s happening, but I’m sure that’s a coincidence.

– “Homer you can’t just do the things you want to do” comes right after Homer tells us what he might do.

– “She might marry someone like me”/”you think that might be bad?” – These just keep coming.  It’s one thing to explain what’s happening, it’s quite another to do is three times in the same scene.

– Nice of Cletus to just be there at the bar without saying anything until now.

– Good Jebus, now Homer is describing what he’s gonna do at the dinner.

– “Hey, I can’t screw this up or Lisa will get stuck with someone like me” – Did you get it yet?  People who fell asleep watching American Dad and just left the TV on could follow this plot by now.

– “We need to have a conversation in loud whispers”, once again, the action you’re about to see before you see it: comedy!

– How about some characters describing their feelings out loud and in public?  “I felt terrible when you said I felt stuck with you, but then I realized I am stuck with you”.  Ugh.

– “Remember that sewing machine you say I never use, well I sold it and bought this dress” – It’s never going to stop.

– Why is Jimbo at the bar?

– Hey, Lucas is back for the last scene in the episode.  I guess he didn’t choke to death or anything.

– “You’re not competitive eating anymore?”/’No, I realized that was unrealistic”, but his lines are still terrible.

– The whistle version of the theme over the credits was kinda nice, but, then again, I’m a sucker for that song.

Anyway, the ratings are in and while they are up slightly from last week, they remain deep in the toilet.  Last night, just 4.30 million people wondered why they named the episode after a character who wasn’t in the last half of it.  That’s good enough to not be one of the ten least watched episodes ever, the first time that’s happened since January, but is still #14 on the all time least watched list.  Season 25 remains well on pace to be the least watched season ever.


Sunday Preview: Luca$


Lisa dates a boy named Lucas Bortner, who wants to be a competitive eater. Marge becomes concerned that Lisa is trying to marry a boy that’s just like Homer. Bart helps Snake Jailbird break out of jail and starts to receive gifts from him, making Milhouse jealous.


So I guess Zach Galifianakis is the fatty competitive eater for which Lisa gets the hots. Fine.  Good for him. I suppose it’s his turn on the town bike anyway.  I don’t have much to say about the other plot, except that the first time I read this promo, all I could think about was Zap Brannigan saying “But I thought we would be good friends…”  It’s probably not like that, but with some of the things I have seen on this show the last few years, it’s not impossible either.




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