There was no Roman god named “Fartacus”
Couch gag: The family sit on the couch and a hand spins the scene, leaving the picture blurred.
Director: Swinton O. Scott III
Phil Hartman as Lionel Hutz
First appearance of:
Synopsis: Marge is bored with being a housewife and embarks on a new career as a real estate agent. Meanwhile, Homer has bought Snake’s car, Lil Bandit, from a police auction and Snake wants it back.
Discussion: There are so many points to make about this episode… Firstly, Homer has the best lines. I take notes on each episode, including lines potentially used as the post title. Every single line today was uttered by Homer. Despite the ep being centred on Marge, Homer is the standout in the ep.
Secondly, poor Marge. She’s had jobs before: policewoman, pretzel queen… but she really thinks she can make a difference in realty. Trouble is, her conscience gets in the way and she winds up telling the absolute truth about each house she’s trying to sell. Whoops.
Third, Homer’s subplot of buying a car which Snake wants back is inspired. He’s driving like a hoon, using the wrong petrol (or gas, depending which country you’re from) and generally not taking care of the car. Snake, still imprisoned, escapes through a gate labelled “No escaping please” and tries to kill Homer to get Lil Bandit back. Continuity doesn’t count for much in this show; Kirk van Houten’s arm is cut off but I guess he had it reattached because he has full use of it in subsequent episodes. Still, the scenes between Homer and Snake are some of the best in the episode, as is the final scene in the murder house. (Homework: go and watch The Shining).
Last but not least: this is the final episode to feature Lionel Hutz in a speaking role. Phil Hartman was murdered just five months after this episode aired. Fifteen years later and it’s still so tragic and sad. Somewhat ironic that the house Lionel’s been trying to sell is nicknamed the “murder house”.