The Princess Guide
Couch Gag: The Simpsons are printed on a 9 dot printer and there’s a paper jam.
Director: Timothy Bailey
Richard Branson as himself
Kevin Michael Richardson as Nigerian King
Yaya DeCosta as Princess Kemi
Jon Lovitz as Enrico Irritazio
Synopsis: Moe is prepared to exact revenge on a Nigerian princess for an internet scam but ends up falling in love with her.
Discussion: Maybe it’s the lack of sleep (I have a 10 week old baby). Maybe it’s the high heat and humidity. Or maybe this episode just didn’t suck, but I liked it. I was ready to hate it, ready to dig into the expositions and bad writing and utter nonsense… But I think it’s sweet.
We’ve seen Moe have flings before, but this one was just lovely, like the first day of spring after a long winter or the first crush after having your heart broken. Moe has fallen for the classic Nigerian scam and is ready for revenge, but ends up sharing a montage with the Princess instead. Awww!
Sure, it’s not brilliant or a hark back to classic episodes, but it’s a simple story (at least it has a story!) and it’s a fine ep. I know, I know… I’m as shocked as you are.
Eeny Teeny Maya Moe
couch gag: A series of animation cels builds up a naked Homer and clothed family; Marge pulls down the final cel which clothes Homer.
Director: Nancy Kruse
Synopsis: Moe has a date with a little person named Maya, whom he met online. Meanwhile, Maggie is hassled by playground bullies.
Discussion: Poor Moe. He just doesn’t have any luck with women. If it’s not his gargoyle looks turning them away, it’s his attitude. This time, he’s met a beautiful woman name Maya, who is a little person. He makes some inappropriate jokes about her size and bingo, the relationship is over. C’est la vie.
The Homer-Maggie subplot is really quite uninteresting save for the very end when the baby bully is beating up Homer and Maggie rescues him. It’s reminiscent of previous episodes but strengthens their bond in much the same way as Homer spending time with Bart or Lisa (which usually goes very wrong).
Moe, although a peripheral character, is actually quite interesting and to see him explore a relationship to this level is very sweet. He’s had a few dates before but the woman is always out for something else, e.g. money. Maya is the real deal and still Moe manages to screw it up. Homer consoling Moe after he’s dumped is a sweet moment which begs the question of will Moe ever settle down with a woman who truly appreciates him?
I don’t think it’s a fantastic episode; it has very few funny parts but it does have a lot of heart. The character of Maya was treated with respect (except for Moe, which was the whole point) and Moe’s vision of what the bar flies would do if they met her was a laugh-out-loud moment just because it’s far more awkward than what Lenny, Carl, Barney and Homer would actually do. I did want to see a scene where they met Maya, just to contrast Moe’s vision with what they’d actually do… but it’s not there. Overall, it’s an above average episode but needs something for an extra kick.