The Last Temptation of Homer
All work and no play makes Bart a dull boy
Couch gag: The Simpsons sit on a couch and find they’re guests on David Letterman’s talk show.
Director: Carlos Baeza
Michelle Pfeiffer as Mindy
Werner Klemperer as Col. Klink
Phil Hartman as Lionel Hutz
Synopsis: Homer is attracted to the new woman at work, Mindy. Meanwhile, Bart needs corrective implements for his eyes, scalp and feet and spends two weeks looking like a nerd.
Discussion: “Homer loves Mindy! Homer loves Mindy!” chant the trout when Homer accidentally lands in the hatching pool. Homer, for unknown reasons, seems to be attractive to da ladeez; we first saw it back in season 3 when Lurleen wanted to bunk with him. Whereas Homer was oblivious to Lurleen’s advances then, here we see Homer as falling for Mindy just as much as she’s falling for him. It’s an exploration of “What would Homer do?” and the answer is: His wife. Barney points out that Homer’s attraction is purely physical and once he gets to know Mindy, he’ll see they have nothing in common. It’s sage advice coming from Barney… via a handy napkin on the bar at Moe’s.
I’m not so keen on the subplot. Bart as a nerd has its merits and is probably explored as much as it can be. It just doesn’t quite fit the overall tone of the episode; maybe it would be better suited to a different episode and Bart finds himself tempted by something in the same way Homer is… but then again, Bart normally gives in to his temptations and they become whole episodes on their own. Hmm. In any case, Bart’s nerd-dom serves him about as well as one expects.
The highlights of the episode are definitely Homer and Mindy. Their relationship is explored well and it’s a good conclusion that Homer ends up in bed with Marge (and the bellboy?) The scene at the energy convention… well, I realise now that it has coloured my views of nuclear power and is not a balanced view. But, this is The Simpsons, what was I expecting??