Posts Tagged ‘When Flanders Failed


Quote of the Day

“Hey, boy, how was class?” – Homer Simpson
“Today we learned how to rip a man’s heart out and show it to him before he dies.” – Bart Simpson
“Ooh, that’ll learn ’em.” – Homer Simpson


Makeup Quote of the Day

“Why, Homer, you silly goose. The weed whacker’s just for the edges. You’re going to be out here all day.” – Ned Flanders
“I’m almost done.” – Homer Simpson


Makeup Quote of the Day

“What’d you swipe?” – Jimbo Jones
“An ‘I Love Lefty’ shot glass.” – Dolph
“Left handed pinking shears.” – Kearney
“Pinking shears? Let’s go to the food court and steal some baked potatoes.” – Jimbo Jones


Quote of the Day

“Yo, sensei, can I go to the bathroom?” – Bart Simpson
“You can if you believe you can.” – Akira


Quote of the Day

“You know, if you gave Ned Flanders a chance…” – Marge Simpson
“Oh, here we go again. Look, I don’t care if Ned Flanders is the nicest guy in the world. He’s a jerk! End of story.” – Homer Simpson
“Well, we can’t hold it against him just because he has things a little better than we do.” – Marge Simpson
“Excuse me? Better? Thanks a lot, Marge. You really put me in my place.” – Homer Simpson


Quote of the Day


“Homer Simpson’s on the phone.” – Woman
“Tell him I went out.” – Man
“He needs you to help Ned Flanders.” – Woman
“Ned Flanders is in trouble!?” – Man


Quote of the Day


“Huzzah for the shopkeep!” – C.M. Burns
“Huzzah!” – Springfieldians
“Homer, affordable tract housing made us neighbors, but you made us friends.” – Ned Flanders
“To Ned Flanders, the richest left handed man in town.” – Homer Simpson


Saturday Morning Cartoons

When Flanders Failed13

“Don’t you think you should get a little fresh air and maybe some exercise?” – Marge Simpson
“Yeah, but what are you gonna do?” – Bart Simpson

In the early days, when the show routinely came in for social criticism from cranky old people, the writers liked to use Marge as a way to shoot back.  The most famous example of this was “Marge’s” letter to then First Lady Barbara Bush, but they often worked it into episodes as well.

The quote above comes right after Marge asks Bart how many hours of TV he watches per day, and he casually replies “Six.  Seven if there’s something good on“.  That’s the show heaping scorn on brow-furrowing magazine articles and solemn pieces on 60 Minutes and the like about how television is terrible.  It then really drives the point home:


“Marge, TV gives so much and asks so little.  It’s a boy’s best friend.” – Homer Simpson
“That’s the problem.  Even as we speak, millions of children are staring at the TV instead of getting some much needed exercise.  Those children’s parents should be ashamed of themselves.” – Marge Simpson

This is The Simpsons being meta before that was even a term people used.  Marge is parroting all the criticisms, while Homer is listing the simple reasons those critics will always be ignored.  The whole thing ends with Homer asking Marge to apologize to the television after it gives Bart the idea to enroll in karate class.

Despite being on teevee, The Simpsons is perfectly happy to agree that television is terrible for people.  It just isn’t going to pretend to care.  What it is going to do is make fun of people who do care by showing how utterly ineffective all their shame throwing is.  The joke, as with so many of their best, is on all of us.


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed12

“Homer, this is the Flanders’ entire living room set.  How much did you pay for this?” – Marge Simpson
“Only seventy-five beans!” – Homer Simpson
“Seventy-five dollars?  Ned must be desperate.” – Marge Simpson
“I’m sure you did nothing to discourage this, you scavenger of human misery.” – Lisa Simpson
“Hey, keep your hands off my china hutch!” – Bart Simpson


Quote of the Day

CFL Draft

“Hi, Ned.  Homer sends his apologies, but, um, there was some important work at the plant that only he could take care of.” – Marge Simpson”
“We now return you to exciting fifteenth round action at the Canadian Football League draft.” – TV Announcer
“And so, the Saskatchewan Rough Riders, who scored only four rouges all last season, Jack . . . ” – CFL Analyst


A Little Weekend Reading

When Flanders Failed11

“Oh, right as rain!  Or, as we say around here, left as rain!” – Ned Flanders
“Just stamp the ticket.” – Guy

There are two things I didn’t have time to properly explain in Reading Digest yesterday. The first is our old friend Noah P, who’s adding a new twist to his “watch ’em all” blog: Character Files. Similar to that “Permanent Record” thing we tried to do here a few years ago, he’s taking a look at one character’s appearances through the show. He’s done a couple of big name characters (Troy McClure, Frank Grimes), but my favorite so far is the “Just Stamp the Ticket Guy”:

When Flanders begins to start taking about non-parking-related things, he scolds, “Just stamp the ticket”, hence his nickname given to him by the hardcore Simpsons fan community. But…is that all we saw of him?

No. His legacy would not end there.

Turns out JSTTG is a jerk all the time. When the Squeaky-Voiced Teen tries to talk to him, he scurries away, saying, “Don’t touch me”. Then, when he sees Barney Gumble dressed as a baby, passing out fliers, he says, “You disgust me”. He also tells Marge that his kids aren’t stupid enough to want one of her wishbone necklaces, and for an encore, he punches a hippie, and later, Homer. A man of a few words, most of them rude.

Anyway, if you’d like to put in a request for another character, click through.  Surely the Sarcastic Guy (“Okay, but I’m only paid to drive”) can’t be too far behind?

Second is our old friend Wesley Mead on that Nigerian princess episode in Bakwa Magazine:

It’s significant that the characters featured are an unnamed King and his daughter, a Princess. This allows for Moe’s initial concern that they are connected to a “Nigerian prince” who had scammed him on the Internet. But in aid of a silly, predictable subplot (one that’s not too timely, either— 419 scams were parodied in Fox stable mate Futurama eight years ago), The Simpsons’ crew have failed in their responsibility to reach beyond the lowest common denominator.

The same site also asked yours truly and some other writers to comment on that one. My favorite was this, from Ikhide Ikheloa:

This episode is disappointing on at least one level— the script was poorly written. As someone who used to watch The Simpsons religiously in the past, it just seemed disjointed and contrived. Sarcasm, snide retorts and brilliant takes on society’s dark sides are her trade mark, but this episode struggled.

Indeed it did.


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed10

“You know, at times like these, I used to turn to the Bible and find solace.  But, even the Good Book can’t help me now.” – Ned Flanders
“Why not?” – Homer Simpson
“I sold it to you for seven cents.” – Ned Flanders
“Oh.” – Homer Simpson


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed9

“Apple . . . apple . . . apple . . . c’mon, candy bar . . . hey, I know you!  You’re that first apple I didn’t want!” – Homer Simpson


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed8

“Don’t you think you should get a little fresh air, and maybe some exercise?” – Marge Simpson
“Yeah, but what are you gonna do?” – Bart Simpson


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed7

“Hello, Jerry, Homer Simpson.  Remember last month when I paid back that loan?  Well now I need you to do a favor for me.” – Homer Simpson


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed6

“The Flanders are having a beef-a-thon, incredible Nedibles, Maudacious vittles.” – Lisa Simpson
“Hmm, I think it means he’s having a barbeque.” – Marge Simpson
“Well why didn’t he just say so?” – Homer Simpson


A Season Best and an All Time Worst

Chalkboard - Ned 'N Edna's Blend

“Like one out of every nine Americans, I’m left handed.  And, let me tell you, it ain’t all peaches and cream.  Your writing gets smeared, Lord help you if you want to drive a standard transmission.” – Ned Flanders

I have two good things to say about “Ned ‘N Edna’s Blend”.  First, we dodged the “storytelling episode” bullet.  When they were backstage at the beginning talking about why they didn’t do Lenny’s story, I thought for sure we were in for four short, equally dull segments, but it turned out that they went with the less annoying single, long dull story.  Second, this exchange from the Left Gifted Bi-Dexterous and Transhanded community scene was one of the best things they’ve done all season:

Flanders: We’re trying to decide on the theme for our Left Is Right parade.
Left Handed Woman:  Our Scissors, Ourselves!
Left Handed Man:  How ’bout Death to Righties.
Left Handed Woman:  We have to live among them.
Left Handed Man:  To live among them is to die!  Are you even left handed?

They over explained it and kept the scene going a bit too long, but that argument is a genuinely excellent parody.  Plus, “Fete Accompli” and “A Day to Pay Full Price” were well above average sign humor.  I don’t say this often, but, well done, Zombie Simpsons. 

Unfortunately, those brief moments were surrounded on all sides by the usual array of aggravating and careless problems.  Need a character in a scene? Have them walk right up and announce their presence (there’s Homer and Bart through the window, there’s Helen, Luann and Bernice in the wedding shop, there’s Bart and the window again).  Want to cram in a personal conversation or three?  Have characters argue and reconcile in public with a total disregard for where they’re supposed to be (Ned and Edna at the party, Homer and Marge in their kitchen, Ned and Edna again in front of the school).  Feel like explaining your jokes even as you make them?  Have each punchline carefully pre-chewed for ease of audience digestion (Flanders with the chip clips, the recitation of what goes on at the liberal college, pretty much everything Homer says about playing Jesus).  And, let’s not forget that the main story involved a lot of weird, out of character behavior and bizarre plot twists. 

Zombie Simpsons has a habit of ignoring the history and characteristics of people, but asking us to believe that Ned Flanders (widower) and Edna Krabappel (divorcee) are unaware that marriages aren’t perfect was bad even for them.  Flanders and Krabappel having problems with their relationship?  Fine.  Flanders and Krabappel not seeing eye to eye on Rod and Todd?  No problem.  Flanders being unaware that couples argue?  Wha?  And how on Earth did Krabappel pull the kids out of a school without Flanders knowing about it?  All to often these characters and their actions are barely recognizable as human. 

Anyway, the numbers are in and they are the worst ever.  Last night’s meandering pastiche of marital woe and wonder was ceremoniously endured by just four million people.  (TV by the Numbers has it exactly at a flat 4.00 million.)  That is far and away the lowest number of all time, displacing “The Daughter Also Rises” from earlier this season in the coveted #1 spot.  Eight of the ten least watched episodes are now from Season 23 (numbers are millions of viewers):

#1    23-21    4.00    Ned ‘N Edna’s Blend
#2    23-13    4.33    The Daughter Also Rises
#3    23-20    4.75    The Spy Who Learned Me
#4    23-18    4.86    Beware My Cheating Bart
#5    23-16    4.96    How I Wet Your Mother
#6    23-19    5.00    A Totally Fun Thing That Bart Will Never Do Again
#6    22-18    5.00    The Great Simpsina
#8    23-10    5.11    Politically Inept, With Homer Simpson
#8    21-11    5.11    Million Dollar Maybe
#10  23-12    5.12    Moe Goes from Rags to Riches

Presumably Lady Gaga will give them a boost next week, but it would take a viewership of 26 million just to haul Season 23’s average viewership (currently 6.20 million) up to the level of Season 22, and that ain’t gonna happen. 


Reading Digest: Worth $10 Edition

Simpsons Arcade Console

Image shamelessly yoinked from here.

“So, Bart, what did you learn in karate school today?” – Marge Simpson
“Yeah, come on, boy, this better be worth my ten bucks!” – Homer Simpson

A port of the old Simpsons arcade game came out for Xbox and PS3 this week and there were a metric ton of reviews, many of which are linked below.  I haven’t played it, but most of the reviews I saw said that the nostalgia factor couldn’t overcome the inherent button mashing repetitiveness of a game where the only commands are jump and attack.

A couple of the reviews outright say that the game isn’t worth the $10 they’re charging for it.  Whether or not that’s true for you will depend on how much you want the game and how much that $10 is worth to you.  But it got me to wondering, what would $10 in today’s money have been worth in 1991 when the original game was released?  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, $10 in 2011 money is worth about $6.05 in 1991 dollars, or about twenty four quarters.  In other words, if you can get through the game on the equivalent of twenty-four quarters, then you’d have been better off in an arcade in 1991.  If, on the other hand, you require more lives than twenty-four quarters would’ve gotten you, then your console in 2012 comes out ahead.

In addition to lots of old game reviews, the internet was all aflutter because some schmuck in Iran decided to ban Simpsons dolls.  This is news in the same way that Groening’s Hollywood star is news, my initial reactions was “Huh.  I thought that already happened.”  There was also a lot of 500th episode crap, but hardly any of it worth linking (with one glorious exception).  In addition to all that, we’ve got poor editing at The Hollywood Reporter, an enjoyably gruesome Zombie Bart, self described lunatic conspiracy theorists, and the usual smattering of fan made stuff, usage and other ephemera. 


[Site note: After some screwing around this week, I’ve made it so our Facebook page is now only being “mostly neglected” instead of “completely neglected” like it’s been up to this point.  Basically, I changed the way we push Quotes of the Day to Twitter so that they also get pushed to Facebook without me having to do any extra work.  (That last part is important.)  So if you want to see the quotes directly on your Facebook page, you can now do that.  There was a slight Twitter hiccup this morning, but I think I’ve got everything working.  If you notice anything strange, please e-mail me.]

‘The Simpsons’ Poll: What is the ultimate episode of all time? – A few weeks ago, Digital Spy in the UK asked its readers for their opinion on the best episodes of The Simpsons.  This week they’re back with a poll and it is Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week so hard it should be Link of the Month:

Compiled with the help of your views, our TV team’s opinions and previous ‘best episode’ lists, we’ve cut down the 498 installments that have aired to a manageable cream of the crop shortlist.
The list has been whittled down to 37 primecuts of Simpsons gold and we want your verdict on what is the finest.

Gaze at the ballot below:

Digital Spy Best Episode Survey

That’s thirty-seven episodes, thirty-six of which are from Season 9 or earlier.  The only episode on the list from after 1998 that is “The Computer Wore Menace Shoes” (which they misspelled as “Shows”), which was broadcast in 2000 in Season 12.  According to Digital Spy’s readers and writers, there hasn’t been an episode even worthy of consideration on a top ten list in twelve years!  You suck, Zombie Simpsons.  Massive, massive thanks to longtime reader Kokairu for the link.

500-Episode Simpsons Marathon of the Day – TDW Geeks – Going by the most recent comments on the Facebook page, it sounds like they’re dropping like flies.  (Here’s a picture of what it looked like at the beginning.)  If it started when they said it did (roughly 5pm Pacific on Wednesday), they should be midway through Season 6 right now.  If there’s anyone left, they’ll hit Season 9 tomorrow afternoon and be well into Zombie Simpsons by late Sunday.  Jebus help them.

Video: Jingle Punk Hipster Orchestra TV Theme Melody – Ahh, string instruments (the Simpsons part starts at 2:20):


10" zombie bart in progress – Flickr user andres musta made a Zombie Bart:

Andres Musta - Zombie Bart in Progress

God bless Creative Commons licenses.

In comments, he writes:

It came together at the last moment – yesterday (Thursday) I was distributing flyers for the Dead of Winter show at a local comic book shop that had a pile of old Bart toys. It almost jumped into my arms. Brought it home, and rushed to chopped off the nose, sliced my thumb, removed the lips, and added the teeth from an old plastic skull. It all came together in an hour or two. Added a 10"x10" wooden base, textured and painted to look like sidewalk and screwed him to the base. Will post full pics after the show closes on March 1.

I love anything that involves the words “rushed to to chopped off the nose”.  Can’t wait for the full pictures.  Thanks to Freakoutville for the tip. 

Review The Simpsons Arcade Game – Pretty much what it says.  I especially like this:

Before starting the game you can choose one of four modes. Free Play has unlimited continues, Survival grants only one life and no continues, Quarters gives each player 10 continues and Team Quarters has players share 40 continues.

I really could’ve used that when I was a kid and quarters were scarce.  They recommend knowing what you’re getting before you plunk down the $10 though.

The Simpsons Arcade Game – A rather harsher review:

The Simpsons Arcade Game, much like Ninja Turtles or X-Men, has not exactly aged well.  Let’s face it, it’s a relic.  And not one of those good, Sean Connery type ones.

Heh.  I like this review. 

The Simpsons Arcade: Fireworks Candy & Puppy Dogs Store, or Box Factory? – Yet another review saying the game ain’t worth it.

Go Round – The Simpsions Arcade Game – A YouTube video of four guys playing the four player co-op on the XBox port of the arcade game.  It’s mildly interesting, but I got bored after a few minutes because even watching it gets repetitive pretty fast.

Simpsons Arcade Demo Impressions: Check your Nostalgia at the Door (or not) – Another review that says that the nostalgia can’t override the underlying crappiness of the game.

Month of Codes (Day Seven) – Impressively obscure and pointless cheats for Bart vs. the Space Mutants.

Appointment Viewing: February 6-February 13 – Lenny brings the pre-snark for Sunday’s new Zombie Simpsons:

On Valentine’s Day, Lisa and an intellectual young man named Nick share a fairy-tale romance and make a secret getaway. Meanwhile, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage (“Mythbusters”) inspire Bart and Milhouse to bust Springfield Elementary School myths. Unsurprisingly, Nick is going to be played by Michael Cera.

Homer Simpson – One of Homer’s worst parenting moments courtesy of Cartoon Quotes.

The Sound Of One Hand Clapping – The value of meditating and “Dead Putting Society”.

Iran bans Bart Simpson and Homer Simpson – This was everywhere this week, but I don’t see quite what all the fuss is about.

Bizarro World – Some of those Simpsons-fashion drawings next to the people that inspired them.

Bart Simpson: The New Symbol of High Fashion – Herein I have to link to The Hollywood Reporter for a second time this week, which is unfortunate because their website is so hideously overrun with links, ads, and general marketing stupidity that it’s just this side of unusable.  What is fortunate are these quotes from a guy named Jeremy Scott, whom they describe as an “Avant garde designer”.  I have no idea who he is or whether or not he’s a good designer, but he speaks like he just fell out of a Zoolander sequel:

THR: So this idea came from you, and not Fox, the network that plays the show?

Scott: Oh, I went knockin’ on the door at Fox. I chased them down like a dog in heat. I fell madly in love with Bart. And I’m not even the diehard every-episode fan. It’s just such a part of pop culture. Bart is a nineties teen icon.

THR: Were the execs at Fox surprised at this request?

Scott: I wasn’t really sure how to go about this. I got someone on the phone and took it from there. And it was kismet, synergy, this was supposed to happen. They totally got it: the way I am, who I am.

Reading that I can’t help but think of this scene from the “Unauthorized Cinnamon” episode of Deadwood.  But wait, there’s more:

THR: What’s the general direction of your fall 2012 collection?

Scott: I can tell you it was inspired by the computer, and the way information is disseminated today. The way ideas are profillierating on the internet. How we use icons to show our emotions. The way the way everything is circling around.  I’m into short as a skirt length, but its a new kind of "short long." 

I had no idea people actually talked like that, though it’s hardly his fault that they didn’t run spellcheck on “proliferating”.  But here’s the capper:

THR: Have you met Matt Groening?

Scott: I’ve not met Matt yet – but I’m really looking forward to meeting him. A Fox contingency is coming to see the show, they’re flying in from LA. But Matt will be busy receiving his star on the Walk of Fame.

I don’t know what’s funnier, that he used the word “contingency” when he meant “contingent”, an easy enough mistake to make when speaking off the cuff, or that no one at The Hollywood Reporter fixed it for him. 

Cynics should learn how to stuff their face with cupcakes and reclaim V-Day – Excellent usage:

"Romance is dead – it was acquired in a hostile takeover by Hallmark and Disney, homogenized, and sold off piece by piece," said Lindsay Cahill quoting Lisa Simpson while waiting for the next band to start. Cahill’s overt ability to express something truly troubling was captured by the quotation, adding a layer of hopelessness into the air.

Perfectly quoted.  Well done, Lindsay Cahill. 

The Connection between Lisa Simpson and the Whore of Babylon – Any time you see the words “UFOs”, “Conspiracy Theorists”, and “Lunatic Fringe” in the banner of a website, you know it’s gonna be good:

Ishtar (aka WHORE OF BABYLON) was the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility, war, love, and sex.
The statue of Liberty is basically a monument in dedication to Ishtar. Notice the 7 spikes on her head. It is no coincidence that America is the Great Babylon of our Times.

Interestingly enough, one of the most beloved cartoon characters of the Simpsons, is Lisa Simpson.

She is nothing more than a representation of Ishtar. Notice her spiked head. She also wears the colour red all the time. Red is the colour for PROSTITUTION.

Ishtar was above all associated with sexuality: her cult involved SAC-RED prostitution.

Ironic isn’t it?

And I thought the London Olympics logo was bad.  The replies, including polytheistic theology, involve just as much harmless crazy.

This Music Smells Funny – Dumb, but I chuckled.

anime: lisa simpson by ~teamstar47 on deviantART – Neat fan made Lisa drawing.  It looks like just pen and markers, but it’s shaded and colored really well. 

One down – Excellent therapeutic usage:

I had the simpsons on in the backgroud this morning, one of the old episodes. I wasn’t really listening, but I caught this part:

“Lisa, I apologize to you, I was wrong, I take it
all back. Always be yourself. If you want to be sad, honey, be sad.
We’ll ride it out with you. And when you get finished feeling sad, we’ll
still be there. From now on, let me do the smiling for both of us.”
– Marge, The Simpsons

I think I’m now finished feeling sad. Thank you all for riding that out with me, and your support.

Review: The Simpsons Arcade takes us back to the bowling alley – And finally, an arcade game review that agrees with us:

1991 was a good year for The Simpsons. Some all-time classic episodes aired, the series won a couple of Emmy awards, Bart Simpson t-shirts were still in fashion, and the family starred in an A-list arcade game. It was a better year than 2011, where the series closed in on its 500th episode while a few fans kept up the old argument over when the exact shark-jumping moment happened.



Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed5

“Hey Flanders, when are your busy hours?” – Homer Simpson
“Oh, I expect things to start picking up soon.  I think word of mouth is starting to spread.” – Ned Flanders
“Hey, I hear you validate parking tickets without purchase.” – Guy


Quote of the Day

When Flanders Failed4

“Pay money to read books . . . pfft, the hell with this.” – Bart Simpson

Happy 20th Anniversary to “When Flanders Failed”.  Original airdate 3 October 1991.


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