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It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad Marge

I cannot hire a substitute student

Couch gag: The family are a colour-by-numbers kit, hand painted by Asian artists.

Director: Steven Dean Moore

Guest Voice:
Parker Posey as Becky

Synopsis: Otto is due to marry Becky, but Becky calls off the wedding when she realises Otto will never give up heavy metal music. The Simpsons take Becky in, and Marge becomes paranoid that Becky is trying to steal her family away from her.

Discussion: Despite having a poor reception from fans (apparently), I really like this episode. Instead of going off on tangents, the story is tight an concise, focusing only on one storyline. And it’s a good story too: Otto is set to marry the lovely Becky, but is ditched at the aisle for heavy metal music. So she moves in with the Simpsons until she finds her feet. Exactly how Marge ends up suspicious about Becky trying to usurp her and steal her family… well, that’s a bit unclear but it adds to Marge’s irrational thoughts.

Not everything about the ep is great; for example, Marge’s attempts to stay out of the mental asylum are tedious (except for the marching band) and that bit on Krusty where Marge’s face has Sideshow Mel’s lips is out-of-place. It doesn’t make a lot of sense and one has the feeling it is definitely an in-joke to the writers and Conan O’Brien.

However, as far as season 11 is concerned, this is one of the better eps. It stays true to one story, the catalyst is a stranger and not previously part of the Simpsons universe, and the end scene with Bart finally filming his school assignment is fantastic.

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