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

Archive for May, 2015

Who knew they had nipples in castle times?

Mathlete’s Feat

Couch gag: Rick and Morty crash into the Simpsons’ living room, killing them. They then attempt to revive the family.

Director: Michael Polcino

Guest Voice:
Justin Rolland as Rick and Morty

Synopsis: Springfield Elementary mathletes are coached by Willie to defeat reigning champions Waverly Heights.

Discussion: First of all, I have no idea who Rick and Morty are. Secondly, I suck at maths.

I had really high hopes for this episode. Maths jokes have long been part of The Simpsons so I was really hoping this ep would be smart, sophisticated and cater to the intelligentsia.

Not so. The ep takes a really long time to get to the point and while they’re distracting us with pointless technology and Homer singing proudly, there’s still no discernible climax when we actually get to the maths competition! It’s rather less clever than everyone was hoping, with a few random maths equations and Bart randomly solving a puzzle using Homer’s hair.

Sigh.

Al Jean promised last year that there would be a future episode featuring all the smartest maths jokes the writers could come up with. This is it? I was expecting maths jokes out the wazoo but all I could find was a sign: Math joke of the day: √-1 2^3 Σ π (I know it has something to do with pi/e…). There’s three potential stories presented here but all the audience is left with is a goddamn jug band to fill up the last 30 seconds. With the extended couch gag (which I also didn’t understand but saw a couple of Futurama references shoved in there) and the jug band finale, plus a disjointed lazy “plot”, I’m really wondering where the hilarity is.

On the bright side, there’s a looooooong wait til The Simpsons graces our screens once again.

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He’s a hero sandwich full of bologna

Bull-E

Couch gag: Homer is a soccer goalie trying to fend off soccer balls.

Director: Lance Kramer

Guest Voices:
Johnny Mathis as himself
Albert Brooks as Dr Raufbold
Joe Mantegna as Fat Tony

Synopsis: When Bart is bullied at school, Marge outlaws bullying in Springfield. The Flanders boys try to see the good in Homer.

Discussion: Johnny Mathis as a guest star? Who the hell remembers Johnny Mathis?? And what’s with the Puberty Demon?

Anyhoo, Marge is on another crusade, this time to outlaw bullying in Springfield. Cue townspeople in various situations getting arrested under the new law interspersed with Homer annoying the Flandererses.

Yawn.

Albert Brooks returns to The Simpsons, this time as a doctor of some sort who hosts a group for bullies where they talk about their feelings and possible circumstances which led them to being a bully. Nothing is mentioned about the original bullies; Jimbo, Dolph and Kearney.

Yet again we’re rehashing old ground with no satisfying conclusion. Albert Brooks has had some cracker appearances on The Simpsons but here, he sounds tired and bored. Homer’s big epiphany that he hates Flanders because he’s better than Homer is hardly a surprise. It feels like the writers got to the table read, having not had an actual reason for the situation (over the past 28 years…) and someone’s dog farted out Scrabble letters spelling out “he’s better than me”. There are echoes of the opening scene from Wreck-It Ralph where the baddies sit around coming to terms with being the Bad Guy… but far less convincing let alone entertaining. For some filler right at the end, we have Otto’s hallucinations. Oh boy.

It’s a weak plot, weaker script and weaker still performance. The show is tired and way past its use-by date. This episode managed just 2.77 million viewers in the US; I imagine the numbers here in Australia will be abysmal (for comparison, our highest rating show of the year would attract about 2.5 million viewers).

I thought the mirror was another movie

Let’s Go Fly a Coot

Couch Gag: The Simpsons are penguins sitting on an ice couch. Walrus Homer tips the couch and eats the penguins.

Director: Chris Clements

Synopsis: Bart takes up smoking to impress Milhouse’s Dutch cousin while Homer discovers Grampa’s military past.

Discussion: Yet another sterling effort from The Simpsons. And by “sterling”, I mean I want to stab my eyes out with a rusty spoon and get that flashy thing from Men In Black so I forget I watched it.

What starts out as a satirical look at children’s birthday parties gone bonkers quickly descends into too-long scenes with no point and nonsensical dialogue such as “The best way to get to know each other is to share a rugged outdoor activity… We could walk to the theatre!” Yes, seriously.

The main plot about Grampa and Homer takes a while to get going, and even then it doesn’t make any sense. Grampa, who used to have such brilliant lines such as “I was wearing an onion on my belt, as was the fashion at the time…” is now relegated to pointless flashbacks and explaining everything we see on the screen. And I’m still not sure what the point is. Oh wait, the point seems to be doing a grand gesture to bang a chick. Whoa.

Anyway, that episode sucked liquid nicotine and I hear it’s the 4th least watched episode ever. Nice work.

With your smarts and my Barts, we make a good team

The Kids Are All Fight

Billboard: Montgomery Burns in: The Jinx 2

I will not pay my sister to do my punishment (Lisa is writing on the board)

Couch gag: The Game of Life, chronicling Homer’s life.

Director: Bob Anderson

Synopsis: Homer has an roll of film developed, which has a bunch of photos of Lisa fighting with Bart.

Discussion: A long, long time ago in a Simpsons universe far, far away, lived Bart’s evil clown bed and babysitting at the Flanders’ place. Amongst these beloved memories lies this episode, which attempts to explain why Bart and Lisa fought so much but are now a muted alliance. Or something.

This episode doesn’t make any sense. It’s set “6 years ago” when Lisa was 2 and Bart was 4 and Homer had hair. It’s full of random sequences which don’t mean anything and aren’t part of any greater narrative, such as when Homer wanders in, announces their next kid should be called Maggie because it sounds good when you call it, and he wanders outside again, calling out “Maggie!” As you do.

Anyhoo, the ep feels like it’s trying to make a point, possibly invoking that awesome ep Lisa’s First Word, and failing miserably. By the time the ep finishes, there’s theme music from Seinfeld and Lisa pointing out we’ve had “three natural endings already!” This means a) the episode came up time short and they needed filler and b) the writers know the show is garbage and they, like the audience, have long stopped caring.

This morning, it was announced that The Simpsons has been renewed for another 2 seasons, making this blog at least another 44 posts long… But will someone just kill the show already??? It’s not that I don’t love this blog, because I do, but if the writers aren’t going to make any effort whatsoever to put some life back into this show, then what’s the point. Seriously.

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