I watch, and blog, and watch and blog and watch. It's the Simpsons every day!

Archive for January, 2015

Smell the Musk, Feel the Burns

The Musk Who Fell to Earth

Director: Matthew Nastuk

Guest Voice:
Elon Musk as himself

Synopsis: Seeking intellectual stimulation and new ideas, Elon Musk lands in Springfield and helps turn the power plant into an environmentally conscious entity.

Discussion: This is how I imagine this episode was created…
Producer: We need a guest star, someone famous but not necessarily popular.
Producer 2: Hmm, I know! Elon Musk!
Producer: Brilliant! I’ll call him now! Hi… Elon? Wanna be on The Simpsons? Yeah? Woo hoo!
Producer 2: This will be great!
**Six Months Later**
Producer: OK, Elon is in the studio ready to record his lines. Oh shit, we still need a script!
Producer 2: I found some ideas in the mess hall. They’re leftover ideas from that Lady Gaga ep we did, they’ve had coffee spilled on them and a dog shit on them, but they’re still good to go.

This episode makes no sense. There’s plenty of “jokes” (and I use the term loosely) about Musk’s egotism and intellect, but if you try to think about the “plot”, you’ll get wrinkles (again, “plot” is a very loose term).

There’s nothing remotely good about this ep. I’d give it a negative score if I could. Oh hell, it’s my blog, I can do what I like. This episode gets a MINUS FIVE, and that’s plus one point for effort. It feels a lot like the Lady Gaga episode: a random famous person rocks up in Springfield, tries to fit in and then leaves without making any sort of difference whatsoever. Instead of having a genuinely fantastic idea, Musk elongates Homer’s weird ramblings into technobabble nonsense that never goes anywhere, and Mr Burns hates him for it.

The ep is more disjointed than usual, with the first 10 minutes being boring as hell. Seriously guys, kill the show now. In fact, go back in time ten years and kill it then.

A lot of funny words for not so funny things

Bart’s New Friend

Billboard: You tried the rest, now try Luigi’s Pizza

Snowmen don’t have carrot penises

Couch gag: Homer, Marge and Bart are the Three Bears and Lisa is Goldilocks. Marge, Bart and Lisa eat Homer and it turns out Homer is reading a story to Maggie.

Director: Bob Anderson

Guest Voice:
Stacy Keach as Don Bookner

Synopsis: Homer is hypnotised to think he’s a ten year old boy.

Discussion: Remember when Milhouse looked like his dad and Bart took advantage of him to do adult stuff? (Yeah, I’ve tried to forget that ep too.) Why didn’t Bart take advantage of adult Homer with a 10 year old’s brain? For an episode entitled ‘Bart’s New Friend’, they didn’t really seem to do much together. Where are the pranks? Where is the humiliation for Skinner? Why are they doing boring things like fishing? Haven’t Bart and Homer bonded before when Homer was an adult?

I had high hopes for this episode. It was written about 20 years ago by a then-unknown Judd Apatow, who has since found fame writing films like The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up and Bridesmaids. This ep had potential, but it seems to have derailed somewhere in the process- did another Simpsons writer come along and edit the script to make it crappier? Apatow said he wrote the script in “the old style”, which would have worked. However, there’s a lot of exposition which is a hallmark of later Simpsons episodes. The premise was good, but something happened and the resulting episode is yet another disappointment; Homer and Bart have spent several episodes bonding yet this one fell flat. There was no bonding, Bart seemed to suddenly remember Homer was a 10 year old and thought he should do something with that. There’s very little actual interaction between them, which doesn’t serve the storyline. Homer in silly mode already gets along well with Bart, why doesn’t 10 year old Homer take advantage of that as well? Go get a sugar high on Squishees at the Kwik-E-Mart, or play pranks on Skinner, or use Homer’s license to drive somewhere really cool (is that how they got to Itchy & Scratchy Land?)

My high hopes have been dashed once more 😦

Start this thing, I’m not impressed

The Man Who Came to be Dinner

Couch gag: The Simpsons are in an art gallery viewing portraits of themselves. Homer picks up a remote control, changing all the pictures to TV screens.

Director: David Silverman

Synopsis: During a trip to an amusement park, the Simpsons are transported to the home planet of Kang and Kodos.

Discussion: …I really don’t know how to start with this one. In the canon of The Simpsons, it just gets more and more weird, while being less and less entertaining.

This episode doesn’t know what it’s doing. It’s trying to be half a dozen things at once: another Futurama, Star Trek and at one point I even thought it was turning into Hamlet. Apparently this episode was supposed to be two seasons ago, but was held off. The delay was confirmed by writers Al Jean and David Mirkin as being considered as a plot of a possible Simpsons movie sequel. Oh dear God, no!!!

This ep has all the classic people involved: Al Jean, David Mirkin, David Silverman, Alf Clausen. Did they lose a bet where the loser has to pen the worst episode ever and make 10 million people suffer for it? I just don’t understand the motivation to write, animate or screen this utter pile of steaming excrement.

Let’s start at the beginning. We start with another look at Dizneeland, which was first seen in an episode called Old Money, waaaay back in season 2. Bart talks the family into trying out a new ride, and the family end up in Rigel Seven, the home planet of perennial Halloween favourites Kang and Kodos, who decide one of the Simpsons needs to be a sacrifice.

Basically, we’ve seen this all before in different guises. Amusement parks, check. Eating potato chips in space with the Blue Danube playing, check. Kang and Kodos wanting to eat humans, check. Complete and utter snorefest: check.

Don’t waste time watching this shit. Go outside and get some fresh air instead.

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