Posts Tagged ‘Wedding for Disaster

15
Apr
09

Blaming the Victim

“The guys who wrote this show don’t know squat.  Itchy should’ve tied Scratchy’s tongue with a taught line hitch, not a sheet bend.” – Bart Simpson
“Oh Bart, cartoons don’t have to be 100% realistic.” – Lisa Simpson

This is a couple of weeks old now, but it’s a good example of a recurring stupidity I see in a lot of commentary about Zombie Simpsons.  In a review of “Wedding for Disaster”, Steve Heisler up at A.V. Club wrote:

How does the show pull off yet another wedding episode? By spending 5-6 minutes on the fact that Reverend Lovejoy had, somehow, nulled his priesthood for the last three months, so everything he officiated didn’t count.
[…]
But because the show has to spend a bunch of time explaining why they are allowed to do what they are about to do-presumably to appease message board fans-they’ve wasted time they could be spending on the episode proper.

This is the idea that Simpsons became Zombie Simpsons, at least in part, because the show is now required to contort itself to justify plots and fit stories into an overarching “canon” of Simpsons lore.  It’s bullshit.  The show has never made any sense episode to episode, so long as it was clever, funny and original no one cared. 
 

The biggest, and funniest, example of this is the inability of Mr. Burns to recall any of his past encounters with the Simpson family, but there are numerous others.  “Kamp Krusty” (Season 4), “Bart of Darkness” (Season 6) and “The Summer of 4 Ft. 2” (Season 7) all take place at the beginning of the kids summer vacation, but none of them contain any exposition or explanation as to how that’s possible.  The television breaks in Season 2’s “The Way We Was” and doesn’t get fixed; but the very next episode, “Homer vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment”, is all about them watching television after they get cable.  Of course, that episode ends with them disconnecting the cable, but just one season later in “Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk” they watch the “financial channel”.  The house practically burns down in “Homer the Heretic”, they never explain how the Simpsons get a new car after the truck is repossessed in “Mr. Plow”, and the second to last scene in “Homer’s Barbershop Quartet” is basically an admission that none of it fits in with the rest of the show.  I could go on, but you get the idea.
 

The creators didn’t spend the first segment of “Wedding for Disaster” with useless back story and an implausible explanation as to why Homer and Marge needed to get married again to “appease message board fans”.  They did it to eat up screen time because none of the weak story lines they had (Lovejoy not being a minister/feeling inadequate next to his old friend, Marge going nuts over her dream wedding, or Selma kidnapping Homer a la Jigsaw from the Saw movies) could even hope to fill an entire episode. 
 

The Simpsons isn’t some serial drama or mystery show where every little plot point has to fit or the whole thing falls apart.  It’s a comedy and the only requirement is to be funny.  Wacky situations are not and never have been a problem with fans; hell, Season 1 had Bart going to France and an Albanian spy moving into the house.  Weak, unimaginative storytelling and slapdash humor are the culprits and the blame for that is squarely on the people who create the show, not the fans.

02
Apr
09

Put Down The Glass Dick

“Let’s just say that fame was like a drug, but what was even more like a drug was the drugs.” – Homer Simpson

I have been perusing some of my favorite Simpsons forums in the last few days and for the most part the responses to last Sunday’s Zombie Simpsons have been par for the season. Most people can’t express enough love for the new episodes, a few are satisfied but have some complaints, and even fewer seem to hate them enough to qualify for membership in DHS. What I have been seeing that bothers me is an increase in comments that express a desire to see even more of the crap that has ruined this show over the years. Seriously people, has the crack epidemic picked up again? Is FOX spiking the world’s water supply? What drugs are you people doing that forces you to post this garbage on the internet for everyone to see? For example, the user ‘Simpsonfloyd’ on nohomers.net states

The parson could even become for Lovejoy waht (sic) Chalmers is for Skinner That would be interesting

First of all it wouldn’t. Unless you mean interesting like having your face mauled by a bear. Then it would. That singing bastard almost cost me sex with my wife for a month. Second of all, that is the kind of thing that ruined the fucking show! We don’t need any more characters! Throw away characters are fine, but they almost always end up becoming regulars. Why is Disco Stu not only in most episodes but in the fucking opening?!? The same goes for the octuplets and for that matter Gil. Also, and I am sure I am not the first bird to sing this song, Gil is an absolutely appalling replacement for the many characters of the late Phil Hartman. In fact every time I see Gil in an episode I get the feeling Mr. Hartman is crying in rich man heaven. But I digress.

Well, that user’s comment covers the addition of new characters, but as long as were are talkin’ crazy, let me add to the list of things I assume people like Simpsonfloyd would love to see:

1. Homer Crying more often. 20 seconds an episode just ain’t going to do it. In fact let’s see if Homer can cry for the duration of an entire episode sometime.

2. More story shows. There is nothing like a good episode where the family ends up in a library or something and retells famous stories with them in place of the orignal characters. Man that’s good TV.

3. Less Scenes in the power plant. Back in the first 10 seasons of the show Homer spent an inordinate amount of time at work. While it was sometimes funny, it wasn’t that funny and it encourages countries like France to rely on nuclear power. Homer may get fired almost every episode nowadays, but can’t we just pretend he never worked there at all? The planet and the Country’s funny bones will thank you.

4. More B-list celebrities. We’ve been doing a good job avoiding the A-listers this season with the likes of Mark Cuban, Emily Blunt and Will Shortz, but let’s really go for it folks! I say we get some guests like Craig Ferguson, Kathy Griffen, or the guy that played Bud on the series “Married With Children.” I bet he’d do it for free!

I can’t do this anymore, my soul hurts. Anyway, I would like to request that you Zombie fans lay off the pipe for a few weeks and see if you still want to see such nonsense every Sunday night. I think you’ll be surprised.

31
Mar
09

Grammatically Incoherent Synergy

“I didn’t want a hokey second wedding like those ones on TV.  This one is for real.” – Homer Simpson
I highly recommend clicking over to IGN for this week’s edition of Network Synergy and You.  Not so much for the “review” itself, as it has been significantly improved below, but for the instantly recognizable image of Marge, which has been labeled with a caption that reads (and I am not making this up): “This is the character Marge Simpson from the animated television series The Simpsons.”  Well, holy shit, I would not have been able to figure that one out for myself.  
Enjoy:

March 30, 2009 – “Wedding for Disaster” was one of those episodes that, while not knocking you down with laughter clever or entertaining, was quite fun easy to watch mock. It had a number of common Simpsons stories (religion, romance, movie parodies references, the rotting comedy carcass of Sideshow Bob) all stuck together into one bloated episode. I think that’s why I enjoyed wasn’t the least bit surprised by it. Once you thought you were settling into one story, the episode ran out of ideas, took a turn and started to take you in another direction. It was an episode that had me smiling shaking my head for 30 full minutes, if not always laughing out loud.

Things began with the show having trying to have a little fun with religion, as it has once had a reputation to do. Reverend Lovejoy explained that there were really only two commandments and that the rest are just filler, which would be funny if George Carlin hadn’t done exactly that eight years ago. Makes sense to me. The good reverend also announced that the Parson an inoffensive, made up religious figure would be visiting Springfield. Apparently, the Parson is a bit like the Pope in the “Presbyluthern” religion, which the writers probably took eight hours creating after rejecting Baptomethodism. I loved how Real Simpsons was always non-specific this episode was about what religion is actually practiced at Lovejoy’s church, because it’s funnier that way. Lenny’s excitement over “the earthly embodiment of the elected chair of the national congress of deacons” was my favorite line from this portion of the episode did not in any way sound forced coming from a guy who is supposed to be a blue collar drone.

The Parson’s visit was to let Lovejoy know that, for a time, he was uncertified to perform church related acts for some reason. This meant that anything he officiated during that time period simply didn’t count because . . . duh. There was a montage of scenes with Lovejoy breaking this news to people, and the best most time consuming was Cletus thinking the mailman was a ghost who has been haunting his shack. I also felt Homer greeting Lovejoy as the pizza deliveryman was ridiculously sublime a typically pointless Homer monologue. 

Another highlight of this episode was how the series handle to main plot(?).  [Editor’s Note: Unpossible!] Lovejoy had officiated Homer and Marge’s second marriage in season eight’s “A Milhouse Divided.” Marge recalled this event in another clock eating gimmick as she looked through her scrapbook because most of the remaining viewers of this show were in diapers at the time. I’m so happy this happened, because All too often the series Zombie Simpsons will go on with a plot that could and should, in some way, reference was more or less lifted directly from something that has occurred earlier in the series’ run. All too often, The writers have either forgotten about these events, or they simply didn’t bother to fit in an explanation or acknowledgment of any kind in. “Wedding for Disaster” made great use of the previous episode and, like a fourth-rate sequel, smartly used it to move tether this episode’s gimmick of a story forward to characters the audience once cared about.

With their previous second marriage null and void, Homer wanted to give Marge the big, romantic wedding she never had got back in Season 8. As Homer put it, we wanted this wedding to be, like the one we had twelve years agounlike our children, planned in advance.” This portion of the episode was the least enjoyable indistinguishably bad from the others. Marge became a bridezilla during the planning process, for some reason. This didn’t work for me. Marge has been known to get frazzled now and again, but and the meanness didn’t suit her here, but this is Zombie Simpsons we’re talking about so nothing should come as a surprise. When Homer didn’t come out for the ceremony, Marge thought it was because of how she acted, because “bridezillas” are notorious for instantly blaming themselves. Instead, the episode took another turn and gave us a mini Saw parody re-enactment. The hot sauce lollipop was great made me want wings. And then the episode this piece of shit threw us for another loop when Sideshow Bob arrived as a suspect in Homer’s kidnapping showed up to help kill some more time. The Bob scene was fun a waste, but again, nothing that exactly bowled me over. what isn’t on this show these days?

Ultimately, it was revealed decided that Patty and Selma were behind ruining the wedding, because the writers once again painted themselves into a corner. This fit and was also fun. And it was also sweet contrived, out of character bullshit to have Homer’s recitation of his vows be the turning point for his sisters-in-law. Again, this wasn’t a howlingly funny awful episode, but there were some great individual parts that were even worse, and overall “Wedding for Disaster” was a pleasant enough telling of Marge and Homer’s third and fourth weddings reminder of why genuinely creative television shows don’t need to recycle plots.

30
Mar
09

Still Shitty

The numbers are in and while they’re a mild improvement from last week they’re still well below both the season average and where they were last year.  Last night’s Sideshow Bob cameo popped for 6.58 million viewers, so the over has it.  

I would also like to point out that “Wedding for Disaster” is a pretty good example of pop culture references instead of pop culture jokes.  I’m not opposed to sending up the concept of psychotic brides to be, because it’s a ridiculous concept and could use some satirizing.  Nor am I opposed to sending up the bridezillas themselves, because crazy people applying their narcissistic crazy to their wedding and everyone around them also deserve to have some fun poked at them.  But that’s not what “Wedding for Disaster” did.  Instead it just has Marge acting nuts (and way way way out of character) in the context of a wedding.  They aren’t satirizing anything, they’re just having their characters act out an overly planned wedding.  
The same goes for the “Saw” thing.  Did it add anything to the episode?  Of course not, they just wanted to reference a string of popular movies.  It’s not like the “Saw” franchise isn’t crying out to be made fun of, they’ve made five movies in five years.  But Zombie Simpsons didn’t make fun of them, they just used the “Saw” plot and visuals to inch their moronic plot along.  
29
Mar
09

Bubbling with Anticipation

I just clicked on the epguides.com link to tonight’s Zombie Simpsons.  Here is what it says:

After Marge and Homer’s marriage turns out to be invalid, they decide to re-do their vows. But when Homer goes missing, Bart and Lisa smell something funny and investigate his disappearance.

Oh good, it’s a recycled plot and and adventure mystery.  Color me tickled pink.  Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to pre-emptively watch “A Milhouse Divided” and “Grampa vs. Sexual Inadequacy” to steel my brain against tonight’s onslaught of stupid.  
(That’s Season 8 Disc 1 and Season 6 Disc 2, respectively, by the way.)
Edit: While I’m at it, let’s set the O/U for tonight’s ratings at a flat 6.00 million viewers.  I’ll be optimistic and take the Under.



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