Thursday, September 30, 2010

October Schedule

10/1: Top 5 Treehouse of Horror Episodes #5
10/4: Loan-a-Lisa
10/8: Top 5 Treehouse of Horror Episodes #4
10/11: MoneyBART
10/15: Top 5 Treehouse of Horror Episodes #3
10/18: Donnie Fatso* Top 10 Continuity Issues Ever
10/22: Top 5 Treehouse of Horror Episodes #2
10/25: Treehouse of Horror 21* Treehouse of Horror XXI Preview
10/29: Top 5 Treehouse of Horror Episodes #1
10/31: Top 10 Treehouse of Horror segments

*Subject to air dates, will be alternative reviews if not aired

Monday, September 27, 2010

Episode 1: Elementary School Musical

With such a disappointment from the last season, could this one possibly turn the tide and send the Simpsons back on top? Do those Geico commercials make you want to get Geico insurance? The short answer; no. If there was anyway to deter fans of this show any quicker, it's a musical episode. There is nothing worse than post-season 10 musical episodes in this series (Okay clip shows are #1 but this is a very close 2nd). Let's dive in and find out how this episode is worse thing to happen to young music since Justin Bieber.

We begin with Lisa and her nerd friends up late watching the Noble prize announcements at 4 AM. The winner of the peace prize is Krusty the Clown (Wow, look at it jump the shark so early *looks up*). I mean, this plot is retarded from the beginning, does anyone buy this? Is anyone thinking to themselves "Gee I guess Krusty must have done something very important and was deserving to the prize" THIS IS STUPID AND RIDICULOUS! You know the worst part? We're only 1.5 minutes into the episode, and that includes the 1 minute 10 second opening, how sad is that? Moving on, the next day we have a press conference where Krusty gives a speech and admits he only cares about the money (Charming). After some padding by Homer, Krusty invites Homer and Bart to be in the crowd during his acceptance speech. As Krusty, Homer and Bart get to their plane we see a chorus singing the Itchy & Scratchy theme for Krusty (The few, the proud, the Marines. Now degraded to singing a cartoon theme song for an unfunny clown, how nice). We then cut to Lisa whining to Marge that she can't go to Oslo and Bart can. On the way back, we see that Marge isn't going back home but taking Lisa somewhere else, where she has to whine some more (No seriously, knock it off, Lisa's not a whiny brat).
Say Lisa, do you want some cheese with your whine?
Marge then reveals to Lisa that she's going to spend a week at performing arts camp for no reason (No build up, I guess Marge is just as impulsive as Homer). Marge then drops her off as Lisa wanders around and discovers... Oh Jesus no! *sigh* The camp member all sing a musical number welcoming Lisa *Tries to escape but is caught by RBY* Ok in fairness this is a parody of "Good Vibrations" which is a fairly good song, the problem with it though is that this version is TERRIBLE! The worst part about it (Other than it coming out of nowhere and sounding like a rejected Disney musical number) is that it comes right before commercial break, it's almost like the writers wanted to give us the opportunity to shut off the TV after our minds just got raped. Ok, I've regathered my collective sanity, so how far are we now? 6 MINUTES!? WE'RE ONLY 6 MINUTES IN?! I should really go back and beg for my job at McDonalds, it's far less painful and degrading than this.
The Simpsons: Successfully raping your fond memories for the past 7 years
So if you were foolish enough to stay we see our two main guest stars Kurt and Ethan (Flight of the Concords) are the camp counselors, and they couldn't possibly be any more annoying if they started playing cymbals during a conversation with the pope (Oh yeah there's a real inconstant joke they have where they're supposed to play their guitars and sing everytime they talk, but they don't do it at first and only do it midway through the conversation. That's real lazing writing there). Meanwhile, Krusty, Homer and Bart land down in Europe where it turns out they were sent to Holland and the Noble Peace Prize was a hoax to get Krusty to Europe so he could be tried for international crimes (There ARE better ways of getting someone into your country to be tried for crimes like, oh I don't know EXPEDITION! it was a real stretch from the beginning, but this "Twist" is very lazy and poorly written). Back at arts camp we get an unfunny bit where the counselors try to prep the kids for heckling by making heckles that only upper class would find amusing. Later that night we see the campers around a camp fire for camp stories (I assume) when a camper asks the two counselors what they do in their normal life. We see the counselors start to Dr. Seuss what they do when... oh no! OH NO!!!!!! They break out into a rap. If you need me, I'm going down to the bar the wipe away these memories of this shit.
World's smartest man, and he doesn't know to stay away from this poison
*returns* Okay I assume you want me to talk about this, okay this rap number is worse than the song that the campers sang before. Look I know this is supposed to be a musical episode, but that doesn't justify putting shitty music on the screen and thinking we'll accept it, YOU NEED TO PUT EFFORT INTO IT! (By the way, why is Steven Hawkings in this episode? Is there any reason he needs to be in this shitty rap number?) Okay after that scene, we see Krusty in court and we find out that he can earn his freedom if he can prove that he's contributed something to Western Culture. That's the equivilant of saying that the D.C. Snipers could have avoided jail by doing a PSA against guns, how nice. We then cut back to arts camp where it turns out that Lisa's week is up (As shown by an annoying camera joke). Lisa gets depressed that she has to leave so early because she fell in love with the arts (I guess that all those times you played the sax were because you were bored then) and is forced to sit in the car listening to Maggie's music for 279 miles (Wait a minute it took only a few minutes from the Springfield exit to the exit for the camp in the opening. I guess continuity within the episode is too much to ask for). The next day, we see Lisa's depressed because she has to go back to normal life and she doesn't let the bullies get to her when she does get off the bus. When in band class, she tries to be creative but is told to play the sheet music and that arts camp gives false hope (I'm not sure who to side with here but I have a problem with Lisa just NOW thinking she can express herself creatively. SHE'S BEEN DOING IT ON HER OWN FOR 21 YEARS WRITERS!)
I can't possibly do anything without the aid of art camp counselors
Over in Holland, we see Bart and Homer try to find something to help Krusty but fail to find anything initially, this makes that scene *Entirely pointless*. Back home we see Lisa's still depressed because she was allowed to be artistic at the dinner table there but not here. Hey news flash Lisa; We all went somewhere that was different from home at some point in life and adjusted back to normal life just fine. I hate to beat a dead horse but this whole "Lisa can't be fine at home because it's not art camp" is really pissing me off, she seems whiny, emo and incapable of taking anything she learned there and doing it at home which is not like Lisa at all. Lisa then decides to leave home so that she can go to "Sprooklyn" to pursue her path of an aspiring young artist. Say writers, remember the last time she was alone in a big city? She was scared to death like the 8-year old that she was. I'm not buying this for one minute. The next morning, Lisa gets to the counselor's apartment where she finds out that they are starving artists who have low paying jobs and live in a crap-shack of an apartment. Lisa asks why they lied and they respond with are you ready for this? A song! I really want to hurt this episode but there's no way I can hurt it the way it's hurt me.
Worst thing to come out of Europe since Uwe Boll
Back in Holland, we see that everything in Europe has Euro- in front of it... You know writers, you can't just add Euro- in front of every word and expect it to be funny, let me demonstrate:
The eruoboy went to sit under the eurotree where he ate his eruosandwhich and threw the trash away in a eurotrashcan.
See? It's not funny, it's retarded. Just then, Bart and Homer come busting in with a DVD proving that Krusty made a contribution to Western culture. This leads to a retarded DVD regions joke that is stupid and this could have easily been resolved by just calling it a tape (And considering the footage is from 1990, it should be on a VHS and not DVD). Bart then plays the DVD which reveals that Krusty decided not to put on a show in South Africa which resulted in the band members playing Vuvuzelas which somehow proves that Krusty was indirectly responsible for the release of Nelson Mandela. THAT IS THE MOST RETARDED THING I HAVE EVER HEARD! PERIOD! This cop-out is up their with the "Phony war of Independence" from Gone Maggie Gone and the left-handed BS from Boy Meets Curl. This is just stupid and insults the viewer's intelligence as they watch it. Moving on, after Krusty is freed (Yes his selfishness frees him, remember kids always be selfish, it may come back to help you) we see Lisa listening to Kurt and Ethan play at a crappy coffee shop when Marge busts in and takes Lisa away from the city. After Kurt and Ethan bid them farewell, Lisa looks out her window and notices a huge poster about Sprooklyn being the home of eventual artist Lisa Simpson (What a load). After Kurt and Ethan break the 4th wall about the logic of them getting to the rooftop, we end with them doing their mundane job at Sprubway.

Final Judgment: This episode is terrible, the plot is stupid and made no sense, the subplot was equally as stupid if not more stupid and the writing was terrible. The jokes were idiotic and hurt the brain to watch and worst of all, there were far too many musical numbers that were stupid and annoying. What I find sad is that the writer and director are both pretty good so I have to wonder why this episode sucked so hard.

Final Grade: 1.8/10 Pitiful start, I think Malcolm McDowell said it best:

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Another Preview

After watching the first 12 seconds of a preview for "Elementary School Musical" and I broke down crying. I am dead serious.
I thought to myself: "Maybe I could get a little insight, get a bit of material before my review, maybe it wont seem so bad"
Needless to say, it didn't. After collecting my remaining sanity, i watched the rest of the preview and it was just as bad as I thought it was.

Fun fact: The last time I broke down like this while watching the Simpsons was during "Lisa the Drama Queen". I have never allowed another episode to get the better of me but I fear for Sunday's episode.
Preview 1
After the first preview, the second preview contained nothing but UNFUNNY "JOKES". Seriously it was a minute long meant to be funny and I never even smiled at anything said. In fact I got angry by the 30 second mark because the "jokes" tried way too hard to be funny and ended up being completely unfunny and stupid.
Preview 2:

The third preview was just like the second COMPLETELY UNFUNNY AND POINTLESS! I mean it looks as if the writers went out of their way to say
"Nope this episode wont have charm or comedy in it. Let's instead have shitty musical numbers that would be rejected by Disney and jokes that wouldn't make the mentally challenged smile"
Preview 3:

I will enjoy tearing this episode apart come Sunday, it seems like it deserves it. In the meantime I'm off to take my happy pills and go to bed with a bottle of Whiskey

Friday, September 24, 2010

Top 50 Episodes: 1-10

10. Marge be not Proud (Season 7 Episode 11)
It's sad that Marge doesn't get that many episodes about herself. This episode is a great example of why she deserved more episodes about herself.

The story begins with Bart and Lisa watching a Krusty Christmas special where Lisa points out that Krusty's Jewish. After that Bart gets enticed by a commercial for Bonestorm and then goes to Marge to "ask" her to buy him the game, Marge immediately says no. After Marge tucks Bart into bed, Bart sees CBG's store with Bonestorm for 99 cents. CBG then explains to Bart that 99 cents is the rental price and he is out of them for now. While walking back home, Bart sees Milhouse playing Bonestorm but is kicked out after asking Milhouse to play as well. Bart then decides to go to the Try-N-Save and hopes that someone will buy him the game out of pity. While inside, Nelson and Jimbo show Bart what they've shoplifted and tell Bart it's a victimless crime and okay to do. After a good hallucination, Bart decides to steal the game and walk out, just as he thinks he's gotten away with it, security grabs him and takes him back in. After a short video about shoplifting by Troy McClure, the security guard Mr. Brodka, tells Bart he saw on him steal the game on the surveillance tapes and calls his parents. It turns out though, he got the answering machine and lets Bart go, he then threatens Bart that if he comes back, he'll be in juvenile hall for Christmas. After it's shown that Bart changed out the tape with a bad song, we find out that the family's going to Try-N-Save for the family photo. After Bart has a dream about himself in juvenile hall, he tries to go with a disguise. Marge asks Bart for no hijinks and to have one decent family photo (After we see 3 photos he's messed up). After they get to the store, we see Bart trying his hardest to not attract attention to himself (With the store being as ironic as possible). As the family is setting up for the photo, Bart sees Mr. Brodka and tries to speed up the photo. During the photo, Mr. Brodka pulls Bart aside and reveals to Marge (And the store) that Bart tried to steal Bonesaw and this upsets Marge, which upsets Bart as well. Back home, Homer berates Bart while Marge just sits and talks to Bart as she's disappointed with him (I've actually felt more guilt when my mom is disappointed with me rather than when she yells at me). After Bart discusses what happened with Lisa, Lisa says that Marge is probably just storing up her anger and wont forgive Bart. It is then demonstrated later as Marge doesn't tuck Bart in and Bart feels shameful. Marge then decides that Bart's not her little baby anymore and she thinks she mother him too much. The next day, we see that Marge didn't wake Bart up or put the marshmallow in his hot coco. Bart then goes over to Milhouse to talk about the fact that he's afraid that his mom has stopped loving him. After we see Bart hang out with Mrs. VanHouten (He wants to be loved by a mother-figure) we see that the family made snow-people was Bart was gone and Bart makes a pitiful snow-Bart out of mud snow (If this doesn't scream symbolism, I don't know what does). Bart decides that he's tired of being the black sheep and he goes into Try-N-Save for one last thing. After Marge and Lisa spray fake snow on their tree, Marge sees Bart come in with something in his coat and she chases after him to find out what it is. It turns out that it's a photo of him to put over himself in the family photo. After Marge puts the photo up, the family photo balances out and Marge forgives Bart and loves him again.
For the last time, you WILL respect my AUTHORITAY!
Case for #1: This is a great episode about Marge and her love for her son. This is also a great Christmas episode and very memorable. The plot is just fantastic and couldn't have been done any better, the jokes are great and the writing really gets you sucked into the story very well.

9. Mr. Plow (Season 4 Episode 9)
This is probably one of the most famous episodes of the show ever. This episode has everything working in it's favor and nothing working against it.

The story begins with Homer at Moe's as he finds out that it's snowing hard outside and decides to go home before it gets worse. As Homer tries to navigate through the snowstorm, he accidentally crashes into a car which turns out to be his other car. After Homer gets his insurance check, he hitchhikes to try to buy a new car but decides against it after seeing that the cars there are crap. Homer then decides to go to the Springfield auto show to buy a new car instead. While there we see a bunch of funny car jokes and the family meets Adam West who is just as crazy as we all think he is (Or as crazy as he is in Family Guy). After slowly backing away from West, Homer runs into a snow plow and decides to buy it because he can make money plowing snow to pay for the truck. After Marge complains to Homer about buying the plow, we see Homer fail to get his fliers out and Barney showing that nobody reads them (Okay, I can't write down every joke but believe me when I say this episode is littered with a lot of great jokes). Back home, Lisa suggests to Homer that he should buy some cheap advertising on an obscure channel. Homer becomes intrigued and we find out that he bought a commercial for 3:17 AM (I love the lampshading joke about the Simpsons being on a lousy channel). After the commercial, we see Homer's ad has worked as he gets a lot of business. Homer is then commended by the city for his work and given a key to the city. After Homer tells Barney to be the best he can be, we see a scene where Marge admits she was wrong about the plow and is turned on by the Mr. Plow jacket. The next morning we see the streets are all plowed clean and it turns out that Barney got his own plow and is now the Plow King. After a commercial for the Plow King (That also insults Mr. Plow) we see Barney steal more customers from Homer and Homer's in danger of losing his plow. Lisa then suggests that Homer come up with a new ad to which Homer suggests a rap (Bart and Lisa look on and never want him to do that again). After Homer's new surreal ad goes up, Quimby takes Homer's key and gives it to Barney. After watching the weather, Homer tricks Barney to go up to plow Widow's Peak so that he can have all the business of Springfield to himself. After Homer plows some driveways, a news report is aired showing Barney being buried by an avalanche. Homer decides to go up to save Barney. After some pretty funny scenes, Homer saves Barney and decide to become partners. God then decides to make it spring and the snowplow business is dead. After Homer's plow gets repossessed, Homer gets intimate with Marge while wearing the Mr. Plow jacket.
Mr. Plow, that's my name that name again is... *Whispers* Line?
Case for #1: This is a very popular episode, and for good reason, this was a top episode from when the Simpsons were on the top. The writing is excellent, the jokes are great and the plot is amazing.

8. Separate Vocations (Season 3 Episode 18)
Now this is a great role-reversal episode. If you've seen my review for "Postcards from the Wedge" I complained they screwed up the concept. Here is the perfect example of how it's supposed to work.

The story begins with the school taking a vocations test (You know those stupid tests that claim to know what you'd be when you grew up but when you got there it was completely wrong). After they finish the tests we find out that Bart is meant to be a police officer and Lisa is meant to be a homemaker. Lisa and Bart both can't believe the results as Lisa refuses to accept that she'd be a homemaker while Bart can't believe that he'd be fighting with the law. Marge takes Lisa to a music shop where the owner tells Lisa she's talented but she wont be able to be a blues musician because her fingers are too stubby (I really don't like this whole "You must be measurably correct to do this activity". There have been some short Quaterbacks who have played much better than tall QBs with rocket arms). Later, the police come to give Bart a ride-along to show him the life of a police officer. Meanwhile, Lisa writes in her diary about how her hopes and dreams were crushed because she shouldn't be able to play the blues as an adult (Okay this is a little out of character for her, but keep in mind that she was basically told by a test (Academics) that she wont be a Blues musician and it was confirmed by a music store owner that she couldn't. She's just depressed and feels like there's nowhere left to go now). So after Bart feels like the life of a police officer is boring, Snake cuts them off and a high-speed chase ensues (Damn boxes *lol*). After they corner Snake, Eddie gives Bart a revolver to back them up and Snakes goes to ram Bart with his car. After failing to shoot Snake, Snake almost hits him but then crashes and Bart is okay. Bart then tells Wiggum that he wants to be a cop when he grows up. The next morning, Marge tries to show Lisa the positives of homemaking but fails after Bart and Homer ignore her cleverness. After some scenes showing Bart learning how to fight crime, we find out that Lisa quit the band and she seems even more depressed. Later at school, Lisa goes into the "bad girls bathroom" and tells the two that if they want to get back at Skinner they should vandalize the school Puma. After it's vandalized we find out that Skinner was in Vietnam (Character development!) and Bart has Willie arrested for burning leaves without a permit. Skinner being shocked offers Bart the position of hall monitor to which Bart takes. After we see Bart enforce his authority as hall monitor, we find out that Bart's doing better in school while Lisa's grades are slipping dramatically. At school, Ms. Hoover assigns the class an art project to which Lisa tells her to "shove it". At the principal's office Lisa tells Skinner that she rebelling against whatever he's got. After the bad girls congratulate Lisa for what she did, we see a montage of Bart and Skinner cleaning up the school. After that, we see Lisa patronize Ms. hoover for not knowing the answers to her own questions without an answer key. At detention, Lisa decides to take all the answer keys away from the teachers to show them. The next day, the teachers are all lost without their answer keys and are afraid to teach. Bart then tells Skinner that the keys must still be in the school and they should do a search for them in the lockers. After searching a few lockers, Bart finds the keys and finds out that Lisa stole them. Bart tells Lisa that she could get expelled for this and Lisa shows remorse for what she did. When Skinner asks Bart who took the keys, Bart takes the fall and gets 600 days of detention. Lisa asks Bart why he took the fall and Bart says he looks out for her and hopes to have the favor returned someday. The episode ends with Bart in detention while Lisa is playing the sax outside. See everything went back to normal.
Nerd without a cause
Case for #1: This is an amazing role-reversal episode that was brilliantly written and directed. The jokes were great, the plot was fantastic and I cannot say how much I love the writing for this even though Bart and Lisa are not their normal selves.

7. Bart vs Thanksgiving (Season 2 Episode 7)
This is by far my favorite holiday episode of any show period (Not including shows that are specifically meant for 1 holiday). I will always find the time to watch this around Thanksgiving or anytime for that matter.

The story begins with Marge preparing the Thanksgiving meal while Homer is watching television. After Bart and Lisa get into a battle over the glue, Bart and Homer watch the Macy's Thanksgiving day parade complete with all the images Fox could use without having to pay for (And a Bart balloon the first year they got one). After Maggie successfully climbs up the stairs of doom, Lisa shows Maggie what's she's been working on for a while; a centerpiece for the dinner table. After a long bit involving Bart getting the cranberry sauce, we see Homer watching some football as he's asked to pick up Grampa. After Patty and Selma come over with food of their own, Homer goes to pick Grampa up for dinner. Back homer, we see Jacquline Bouvier (Grandma) come in and tells everyone she has laryngitis and can't do much talking. After Homer fails to light up the fireplace, dinner is served as Lisa comes down with her centerpiece and puts it in the middle to everyone's amazement. Bart then comes in and tries to take it off but Lisa refuses and then they struggle a bit until Bart throws it into the fireplace where it goes up in flames. This angers Lisa and she goes upstairs crying. Marge and Homer then punishes Bart by sending him to his room without dinner for ruining Thanksgiving. At dinner we see that Lisa plays her sax to try to make herself feel better and this causes Marge to go upstairs to talk to both Bart and Lisa. Bart refuses to apologize to Lisa and he decides to go out for Thanksgiving meal. Bart then travels with Santa's Little Helper as they stumble upon Mr. Burns' mansion and Bart almost gets killed by the attack dogs after trying to grab a pie on the windowsill. Back home, Lisa writes in her diary about how Bart ruined her centerpiece and how he's evil. After walking some more, Bart finds a blood bank and he gets some money and a cookie after donating blood. After Bart passes out, some bums take Bart to a soup kitchen to get him some food. At the soup kitchen we see Kent Brockman doing a human interest story about the kitchen and the family's watching it. While Lisa tries to read a poem she wrote, the family notices Bart's at the soup kitchen and he still refuses to apologize. After Bart sees what the bums go through between holidays he decides to give his $12 to the 2 who saved him and decides to head on home. After Homer and Marge file a police report about Bart, the in-laws all leave and try to say something comforting to the family. Right before Bart walks in he has a dream that everyone will blame him for everything and he decides not to go in but rather go on the roof. While on the roof, he hears Lisa crying and tells her to come up. Lisa asks why Bart did what he did and he says he doesn't know so Lisa asks him to apologize. After Bart again says no, Lisa tells him to look into his heart to see if there's any guilt. After Bart realizes that he destroyed something that she worked very hard on he apologizes to Lisa and she forgives him (Homer and Marge watching from a window). The episode ends with the family having a second Thanksgiving meal.
I will destroy your hopes and dreams sis!
Case for #1: This is a very good Bart episode and a very touching Bart-Lisa plot as well. The writing is fantastic with Bart being ignorant to what he did until the very end, the jokes are great and I could not praise this episode enough.

6. Last Exit to Springfield (Season 4 Episode 17)
Another episode that may be placed too low for most people. The problem is that I thought there were 5 slightly better episodes than this, not that this was the 6th best. I don't think lowly of this episode at all.

The story begins with Bart and Homer watching a "McBain" movie where Homer assures Bart that no man could possibly be as evil as the villain there (Cut to Mr. Burns laughing evilly). After a Jimmy Hoffa reference, Mr. Burns has a flashback of when his grandfather was running the "Atom Factory" showing that there wasn't a union and the lack of it caused one employee to have an eerie premonition of unions. Mr. Burns decides to fight the union by getting back the dental plan. At the dentist's office we see probably the evilest doctor since Dr. Kevorkian (Wow, that was terrible. Allow me to pour hot acid in my pants as punishment *Screams*) Dr. Wolfe then tells Marge that Lisa will need braces or else her teeth will come on crooked and make her unpopular (Moreso). Marge tells Homer that Lisa needs braces as Homer assures Marge that his dental plan will pay for it. Later at a union meeting, Carl tells the employees that Mr. Burns gave them a keg in exchange for their dental plan (While you're at it why don't you exchange your healthcare plan for 6 dozen donuts, or your 401(k)s for 15 cartons of cigarettes?) This causes Homer to have an internal argument with Marge saying "Lisa needs braces" while Lenny says "Dental plan". After that, Homer decides that they can't give up the dental plan and he tears up the contract, Burns sees this and is displeased. Carl moves that Homer be the president as he gets an overwhelming majority (With one nay, I love the "Nay" joke). At breakfast, Homer has a dream that he's the Godfather (From Godfather 2) and is tricked by Bart into making a bad deal after saying he needs to be the better negotiator. At the dentist office, Lisa and Marge find out that Lisa's going to get braces from the 17th century. After Homer gets some candy off his back, he goes into Mr. Burns' office for negotiations but confuses Burns' dialogue and thinks he's trying to come onto him. After we see Dr. Wolfe show Lisa some dentists tools we'd see in our nightmares, he puts her under where she has a great hallucination including the Beatles in the "Purple Submarine". When she wakes up she decides to imitate Jack Nicholson's Joker after he gets the surgery. We then see Lisa come home and get some hate from SLH because of her appearance. Homer then gets taken away by hired goons to Mr. Burns' mansion, Mr. Burns tries to show him around the place as we get quite a few funny jokes along the tour. At the end, Burns tries to negotiate with Homer but fails after making him need to use the bathroom. After retuning Homer back, Mr. burns gets severely hurt twice and Homer contemplates retirement citing the job's too hard. After Lisa has a sad picture day, the union decides to go on strike (Except the nay person). The next day, we see the strike with Lisa singing a song about them fighting against Mr. Burns. After Mr. Burns gets tired of listening to the strike breakers we see Mr. Burns fail to bust the strike himself. After Mr. Burns gets tired of seeing Homer walking around he decides to run the plant with Smithers in the best way possible: a funny montage. Later, we see Homer, Burns, and Dr. Brothers sit down for a talk on Smartline about the strike. On the show, Mr. Burns reveals that he's going to send down horrible events if the strike does not end. After a Get Smart entrance to the main power room, we see Mr. Burns shut off the power to Springfield. This does not affect the strike and Burns tells Smithers (After his Grinch impression) to call Homer to negotiate. Burns agrees to give back the dental plan only if Homer quits, Homer's ecstatic and agrees. The episode ends with Lisa given better braces and everyone laughs after they find out that the laughing gas was left on.
My God! What have I created?!
Case for #1: There aren't many problems with this episode and a lot of the references are genius. The plot is fantastic, the writing is amazing and the jokes are great.

5. Marge vs the Monorail (Season 4 Episode 12)
This is probably the consensus best Marge episode ever in the series and for good reason, it is amazing.

The story begins with Homer imitating the opening to The Flintstones until he crashes into a tree. Mr. Burns then attempts to dump some toxic waste off in the park but is captured by the EPA after being tipped off by some scouts. In court Hannibal Burns, er I mean Mr. Burns is fined $3 million for his crimes. After Bart and Lisa think of ways the money could be used to "help the school" we go to the town meeting where they discuss idea of how to use the money. Marge suggests that they fix main street and everyone's on board until Lyle Lanley appears and tells them in song (A la The Music Man) to use the money on a monorail (Phil Hartman always rises to the occasion). After Homer tells Marge she should have written a song to get Main St. fixed, we cut to the 2nd grade where Lyle takes questions. Lisa asks an intelligent question about why such a big transit system should be placed in a small town, Lyle gets around it by praising Lisa's intelligence and patronizing Ms. Hoover. Homer gets the idea to become a monorail conductor after watching a commercial for Lanley's school for conductors. After Bart says he's proud of Homer trying to be a conductor, Marge asks Homer if the monorail is safe or not. Later, we see based on Lyle's book that he plans on running off with the money, while the people of Springfield are left to die. After Homer shows his family the monorail (Including a funny opossum joke), Marge finds Lanley's book and finds out that the monorail is unsafe and will kill anyone on it. Afterwards, Marge decides to go to North Haverbrook to see how their monorail is. When she gets there, she finds the town to be a wasteland and the monorail drove away all business and the people. Marge then meets Sebastian Cobb who offers to help Marge and Springfield from the monorail. During the maiden voyage we see a lot of celebrities including Leonard Nimoy come out for the first run. After Lisa asks Lyle why he doesn't ride the monorail, we see everyone get on as Homer starts it up and it begins to fall apart. After Marge and Cobb get there, we see the train is going too fast to stop and the brakes are out. After a funny solar power joke, we see that Lyle's plane makes a layover in North Haverbrook where Lyle immediately gets mobbed by the townspeople. Homer is then told by Sebastian to get an anchor to try to slow down the train to a stop,Homer then grabs a cowboy's lasso and the M from the monorail. After throwing it out, the anchor latches onto a huge doughnut and stops the train.
Stop! Song Time!
Case for #1: This is a beautifully written episode, the writing is amazing, the plot was genius and the jokes were funny throughout the episode.

4. Lisa on Ice (Season 6 Episode
This is my favorite Bart-Lisa episode and for a good reason, this episode is just great in every aspect of a Simpsons episode.

The story begins with a huge snowstorm outside that convinces Bart that school will be closed the next day. Lisa tries to tell Bart not to pay attention and he should do his work but Bart throws his book in the fireplace anyways. The next morning, Lisa throws a snowball at Bart and runs outside to reveal that there's no snow and she made the snowball out of ice from the freezer. At school, Bart almost has to read his book report but is saved by an assembly. Skinner then tells the school that anyone failing a class will be given a notice and he starts handing them out. After Skinner says Simpson, he then says Lisa who finds out she's failing gym. After taking their notices back to Homer and Marge, Homer offers to buy Bart a present while Marge chews Lisa out for failing gym (Which Lisa points out is unfair). Lisa then finds out from her gym teacher that she can avoid failing by joining a pee-wee team outside of school. After Lisa fails at a few sports, she goes home crying to Marge about her being scared of failing a class. Marge tries to comfort her with the notion that sports is a small part of life until Bart and Homer come in loving sports. At the game, we see Bart is the star player for his team and he knocks Milhouse out with a shot to the face. After Bart's team wins Bart tries to belittle Lisa with the notion that he's better than her at sports. Lisa's unimpressed and Bart starts slapping stuff at her (Which she bats away). Apu then notices Lisa and after shooting a puck her way, she catches it and Apu tells her she's his new goalie. The next day Marge is adamant to the idea of Lisa playing hockey but Lisa insists that if she doesn't she'll get her first F that will haunt her for life (As seen in a dream sequence). Homer tries to make sure that the team accepts Lisa but he gets distracted and starts towel-whipping Utter. At Lisa's first game, we see that she's good but also scared of the game and so many people trying to hit her with the puck. Afterwards we get a mini-montage of Lisa improving her game and becoming a great goalie. After a party at Apu's to celebrate the season, Bart thinks that if Lisa's better than him and hockey than it might mean he's better than Lisa at school. After testing this theory, it fails and the bullies beat up Bart for wasting Mrs. K's time. Lisa saves Bart as Bart realizes he's been pulled down a few pegs. After not being able to watch TV with Homer Marge agrees tom play basketball with him which turns out to be embarrassing. Later that night, we see Bart sitting on Lisa's bed waiting for Lisa so that he can "settle the differences" between them. Lisa tells him to get out and it erupts in the two of them fighting. Marge goes to split them up as Homer comes in to tell them that Bart's team will be playing Lisa's team. After some scenes promoting the game between Bart and Lisa we see the family eating dinner with Bart and Lisa still being bitter rivals towards each other. After Moe tries to get some inside information for gambling, we see Bart and Lisa get into a brawl on the ice before the game starts. Marge tells Homer in the stands that they shouldn't have a favorite kid and having them go against each other is wrong. At the beginning of the game, Bart scores a goal against Lisa but Lisa responds by saving the next goal. During the game we see both Bart and Lisa get hurt while playing due to the sport. With the score tied 3-3 Bart gets tripped and is awarded a penalty shot. As he sets up for it, both Bart and Lisa have flashbacks of the other being a good brother or sister to them. After realizing that the other is the best sibling they could ever have, Lisa unmans the net and Bart throws his gear off to the side and they approach each other and give a big hug congratulating the other for a great game. The crowd then gets irate over a tie and a riot ensues. The episode ends with Bart and Lisa skating off together as the rink is being destroyed.
Let's go home, these people are too angry
Case for #1: This is an excellent episode showcasing the relationship between two siblings who hate each other on the surface but deep down love each other. The ending is very heartwarming and a great way to end a great episode. The plot is so good they duplicated it for a future episode (Which I mentioned earlier)m the writing is fantastic and the jokes are great.

3. Duffless (Season 4 Episode 16)
This is a great episode in an already great season. I really love the plot for this episode as it deals with Homer's drining problem and how it affects his life.

The story begins with Bart winning the science fair, but it turns out that it was a dream that Lisa was persuading. At breakfast, we find out that Lisa grew a huge tomato using steroids that Lisa hopes will help end world hunger.After Marge tells Bart not to have Santa's Little Helper smoke cigarettes, Homer has one of the best internal-external dialogue bits ever in the show. After Homer escapes from the plant in a complex manner, Lisa asks Bart to hold onto her tomato for a minute and Bart throws it at Skinner angering Lisa. After some good Duff jokes at the Duff Brewery, Lisa tells Marge that Bart wrecked her project and the fair's very close. Marge suggests an experiment involving a hamster with a maze and this leads to Lisa thinking of the hamster as Bart as she decides on her new project. After Barney distracts the inspector for a while, we see Barney trying to drive but Homer taking the keys because he is less drunk than Barney. Wiggum has them pulled over and Homer gets arrested for DWI. After Marge finds out, Homer gets his license revoked and has to attend two months of AA meetings. After Lisa buys a hamster for her project, we see that Homer's using a bike to get to work. As Lisa writes up her hypothesis, we find out that her project is to determine if a hamster is smarter than Bart. Lisa then sets up identical tests having a piece of food out of reach for both Bart and the hamster. The hamster gets the food while Bart has a bookcase collapse on him (Thankfully not puncturing a lung in the process). The second test is connecting food to a mild electrical current. The hamster tries to eat the food but stays away after the initial shock, Bart does not learn after the first shock and tries to grab the cupcake over 3 times. After a PSA video by Troy McClure against drunk driving is shown to a group that includes Homer, Homer goes to his first AA meeting (Which causes him to jump out of a window). Later, marge asks Homer to quit drinking for a month, Homer is hesitant but agrees to it. After Marge asks Bart to grab some cupcakes (Clockwork Orange parody, I love it) Homer pours his beer down the drain and sings a song about how he began drinking. Later Bart finds out about Lisa's experiment and he hides her findings only for her to find it less than a minute later. During the science fair, Lisa sets up her both only to notice that Bart's getting attention for putting her hamster in a plane. Skinner loves it and gives Bart first prize despite it has nothing to do with science. During Homer's month of sobriety, he sees so many ads for Duff and does his best to resist it. After Homer notices he's losing weight, he admits at his AA meeting that he's done some low things to get some beer. As Homer rides the bike, there's beer everywhere ad he does his best to avoid it. At the end of the month, Homer goes off to Moe's despite Marge's objections. At Moe's Homer gets ready to drink a beer until he realizes who's there and decides to go home to his wife. The episode ends with Homer and Marge riding on the bike while singing "Raindrops keep falling on my head"
Oh cruel irony!
Case for #1: This is a great episode about Homer's drinking problem. The plot is great, the writing is some of the best the show has ever produced and the jokes are hilarious from beginning to end.

2. Lisa's First Word (Season 4 Episode 10)
This is probably the most heartwarming episode of the show. To me this cements Maggie as one of the cutest characters ever and only Liz Taylor should ever voice Maggie.

The story begins with the family trying to get Maggie to talk but she can't. As the family's trying to understand why she can't talk we find out what Bart's first word was (Aye Caramba!) Marge decides to tell the story of Lisa's first word instead because it's more family friendly. As Marge tells the story, we find out that the family lived in an apartment in the lower-East side of Springfield. After Homer strangles Baby Bart for not calling him Homer, we get a montage of life in the apartment. After Bart flushes down Homer wallet (And later his keys) Marge reveals to Homer and Bart that she's pregnant. After Bart has a dream sequence of what a perfect life with a baby sibling would be like, Marge tells Homer that they need a bigger place and Homer initially says no. After Marge drops Bart off with Patty and Selma we see Marge and Homer go house-hunting until they find the house they live in today. Homer finds out it's too expensive and asks Grmapa to give him a loan to pay for the house, Grampa decides to sell his own house and Homer offers him a room in the new house (which lasts for 3 weeks). After Homer almost goes off on a tangent, he goes back to telling the story of the day they moved in. Right after they move in, Ned and Todd come over to we them, Homer and Bart are annoyed at first glance as Homer asks to borrow Ned's TV tray (Which he still has). After we see a scene of Bart being as annoying as, well a 2-year old Homer and Bart watch an I&S cartoon which leads to Krusty having a contest involving the Olympics which causes him to lose millions because the Soviets boycott the Olympics. After Homer tries to get Bart away from his crib, Homer builds Bart the infamous "Clown Bed" which scares Bart (This is another one of my favorite jokes of the show). After Marge tells Homer that the baby's coming, they leave Bart with the Flanders while Homer takes Marge to the hospital. After we see Bart is miserable at the Flanders, he runs into grandma Flanders who creeps him out. After Lisa is born, Bart goes into the nursery where he sees newborn Lisa and immediately hates her. After Marge shows Lisa off to Patty and Selma, Bart gets jealous and sad that he's not getting attention. After Bart is told he can't hold Lisa, he decides to try to remove Lisa from the equation by cutting her hair, mailing her off and dropping her off in front of Flanders. This story comes to it's climax when Bart tells Lisa that it was better when it was just him, Marge and Homer and he's leaving. Lisa gets his attention by saying his name as her first word, Bart then shows this off to Homer and Marge. After Lisa too calls Homer Homer instead of daddy Bart hugs Lisa and then we cut to present day where they're having a small fight. Homer takes Maggie to her room and hopes she never talks so that she can be his angel, the episode ends with Maggie saying daddy and going to bed.
I love you little Lisa
Case for #1: This ending is perhaps the greatest ending for the show ever. The plot is great the writing is great, the jokes are great and this is such a heartwarming episode. The "Daddy" line alone is a heart melting moment and probably one of the best in TV history.

1. Cape Feare (Season 5 Episode 2)
Okay if you didn't see this coming, go back and read the others, I clearly put in subtle hints that the #1 would be a sideshow Bob episode and here's Sideshow Bob's best episode.

The story begins with Bart and Lisa watching a show on Fox that's controversial when marge comes in and gives Bart a letter that is a death threat against him. We then cut to his threatener making another death threat with his blood. After an I&S cartoon, Homer reads Bart's newest death threat and gives it to Bart. At the table we see all of Bart's death threats that includes one from Homer (This is one of my favorites jokes ever from the show, it never gets old to me). Bart's paranoia transfers over to school where he gets pants by Nelson. The next day, his day consists of many people talking to Bart in a seemingly threatening manner which scares Bart. After Marge gets no help from the police, Lisa thinks it may be Moe and she tells him to knock it off or they'll go to the cops (Which causes Moe to release his pandas. This is so random and yet so funny). As Bart tries to figure out who's sending him the letters, we get a dramatic flyover to the prison where we find out it's Sideshow Bob and he has his own theme music! The next day SS Bob goes up for parole and after a funny bit, Bob is given parole and he leaves prison a la Cape Fear. At the theater, the Simpsons are trying to watch a movie but SS Bob is being very inconsiderate. When Homer asks him to stop Bob asks why Homer's being obnoxious. Seeing S Bob scares Bart and Lisa and Bart figures out ti was Bob who was sending him the threats. After Marge tells him to leave Bart alone, Bob says he will in the eeriest way possible. We then see Bob at his home working out in ways that shows his hatred towards Bart. After a detective fails to get Bob to leave, Bob tells Bart's neighborhood that everyone except him is safe from his urge to kill them. The Simpsons are then taken to the witness relocation program where they are changed to the Thompsons and relocated to Terror Lake (Homer's a bit slow in learning his new name). On their way there, we see SS Bob is strapped to the undercarriage of their car and takes a lot of abuse on the way to Terror Lake. After the Thompsons do their new opening, Homer mocks that if he doesn't like his neighbors he can leave (Which causes all the other house boats to leave). SS Bob then gets out from under the car and does the best running gag of the show where he hits himself with multiple rakes to the face. Later Bart find out that Bob followed them there and Bob gets crushed by a parade after he decides to tempt fate (This is my all time favorite joke of the series no exaggeration). After Bart tries to tell his parents, we see SS Bob in the Bates Motel *snickers* planning Bart's death. Later that night, Homer scares Bart twice (First time with a knife and brownies, second time with a hockey mask and a chainsaw). Bob then gets on the boat (Where there's a rake there to meet him) and he cuts the rope and the boat sails off. Bob approaches Bart and almost cuts him, as Bart tries to escape, Bart tricks SS Bob by stalling him with a performance from the HMS Pinafore. After the performance, Bob gets captured by the police and everything is okay.
What were you trying to warn me about? Oh that! OH SHI-
Why it's #1: This is the perfect combination of comedy, drama and seriousness. The writing is beyond compare, the plot is very impressive and the jokes are very good and memorable. Every time I have my doubts about the series, I always watch THIS episode to reassure me that this is a good show.

Top 10 preview

While I compile this final part, I have to admit, this is the hardest 10 episodes to order. I have looked at the list so many times and could not have 2-9 be the same every time I checked it. All these episodes are great and could easily replace each other for any other spot except #1 & 10. Please do not get angry if the order is not the way you would view it. Instead of saying why it's here, I will post a case for it to be #1 or why it's #1. I think you all should know what's #1 but I hope you agree with what I have to say in the end and if not, just post your opinions, I encourage other people's opinions on this blog.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Top 50 Episodes: 11-20

20. Deep Space Homer (Season 5 Episode 15)
This is a very good episode and many consider this one of the best episodes from the golden era and season 5. I wish I could put this higher but I just couldn't after looking at what's ahead.

The story begins with an employee award ceremony to which Homer's ecstatic about because he thinks he'll finally win a worker of the week award. Mr Burns then gives the award to an inanimate carbon rod (This is a great running joke for the episode). After Bart draws on Homer's head (Causing the family to laugh at him) Homer goes to watch TV until they show a launch by NASA to which Homer orders Bart to unplug the TV. After we find out that NASA is in danger of losing funds due to low ratings, they decide to find a lowly blue collar slob to try to appeal to the viewers. Right before they search, Homer calls NASA and admits he's a blue collar slob who's sick of them. Later NASA goes to pick up Homer who lies and tells them it was Barney who crank called them, so NASA decides to knock them both out and take them back. Later, NASA introduces Barney and Homer as new astronauts at a press conference. After Homer imitates Charlton Heston in Planet of the Apes, we find out that only 1 can make it and Barney is not allowed alcohol during the training. After a dinner scene with the family, we see that sober Barney is very athletic and focused. After some training, we see that the winner will be going with Buzz Aldrin and Race Banyon. Later, we find out that Barney won but he freaks out after drinking non-alcoholic champagne making Homer the winner by default. After an I&S cartoon about space, we see Homer and the crew prepare to board the shuttle (Ok Buzz and Race prepare, Homer tries to back out). After a pep talk from Marge, Homer decides to continue with the launch and the launch goes as scheduled with ratings at their highest in a long time. While in space, Homer pops open a bag of chips and in the process of eating them, he releases the ants by breaking the case they're in. After our James Taylor cameo, we see a live feed with the ants floating around which makes Kent Brockman think they're giant ants who are bent on world domination. The ants then destroy the navigation system and Taylor suggests using the vacuum of space to get them out. After they get sucked out Homer almost gets sucked out as well but instead breaks the hatch and this causes Race to try to kill Homer, but Homer tries to defend himself with a carbon rod which gets stuck and becomes the new hatch for the door. After they successfully reenter Earth's atmosphere, the rod gets all the credit making Homer mad again. The family though shows more respect for Homer as Bart decides to homage 2001: A Space Odyssey.
MMMM... Floating chip *Drool*

Why it's here: This episode is great. This probably has some of the funniest jokes in the show's history, the writing is fantastic, the jokes are great and this is just a very memorable episode.

19. Bart of Darkness (Season 6 Episode 1)
Anytime this show does a successful homage to Alfred Hitchcock, I will enjoy it. This particular Rear Window homage though is probably one of the best homages I've seen in this show.

The story begins with Homer and Bart chilling out in the fridge to beat the heat, Marge and Lisa come in as well and the fridge motor overloads.  The kids stay indoors but are fooled twice by the idea of ice cream until Otto comes up to their house with the "pool-mobile". After having a good time, the pool-mobile leaves and Lisa and Bart decide they need to bug Homer to get a pool of their own (For anyone who's read my other reviews, this is another example of them being true kids). After the Simpsons buy and build their pool (But first a metal barn) everyone comes over to swim in the pool.As Bart tries to show off to everyone there, he falls from the treehouse and breaks his leg (Nelson says ha-ha). Bart is given a cast but is unable to swim for the rest of the summer. Without Bart, Lisa becomes popular because it becomes her pool exclusively for the other kids. After Lisa thinks about comforting Bart, she sees people in the pool trying to get her attention so she goes back to them (A little ashamed that she's leaving Bart by himself). Bart then gets himself back to his room where he sees Lisa and the kids have Lisa imitate Esther Williams. After Bart enjoys and I&S cartoon, Krusty leaves for the Summer and shows reruns of "Classic Krusty" to Bart's dismay. The next morning we find out that Homer hasn't been putting chlorine in the pool and when he finally does, he overdoes it. After Marge tells Lisa to hang out with Bart, she finds him playing with "Risk" pieces in the dark as she tells Bart that she's so happy that she's popular and it's the greatest thing to ever happen to her. Lisa decides to give Bart her telescope as Bart shoos her away. After a scene where the police try to spy on Homer and Marge skinny dipping in their pool, Bart looks through his telescope and is unimpressed by what's going on in Springfield (Including L.B. Jeffries from Rear Window, funny). As Bart puts the telescope away, he hears a woman screaming and decides to find out where it's coming from. Turns out it's coming from the Flanders residence and Bart is in disbelief that anything bad happened their until he sees Ned bury something in the backyard and talk like Ned. The next day, Bart sees Rod and Todd ask Ned where Maude is and he tells them that they'll be joining Maude with God. Later we see that Lisa has allowed the popularity to get to her head and she tells her brain to beat it. However after Martin gets his own pool, the kids leave her pool and she gets trapped at the bottom (And patronized by her brain while trying to think of a way out). Bart then tries to convince his family that Ned murdered Maude but they don't believe him. Later, Lisa apologizes to Bart for ignoring him while he was hurt and Bart asks for her to sneak into Ned's house for clues (Which she refuses until Bart pulls out his awful script to read). As Lisa is searching for clues Bart notices Ned gets back home and he does his best Jeffries impression (Say, the girlfriend in Rear Window was named Lisa as well. That is a hilarious coincidence). Bart decides to save Lisa by limping over to Flanders as he gets a lot of stuff stuck to his cast. As Ned comes upstairs Lisa scrambles to get into the attic and hide. Ned then goes into the attic with an axe and singing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" as eerily as possible. As it seems that Ned's about to kill Lisa, Bart and Lisa scream and Ned puts the axe away and then faints. Ned explains that he killed Maude's plant and Maude was at Bible Camp (And he screams like a girl). We end with Martin's pool being destroyed as Martin sings some Frank Sinatra.
Sorry Bart I was out swimming, where are we in the plot?

Why it's here: This is an amazing episode, the plot is genius, the writing is fantastic and the jokes are great and memorable. Above all, this is a great homage to Rear Window.

#18 When Flanders Failed (Season 3 Episode 3)
Homer has always been an Asshole to Flanders, but in this episode we see that no matter what Homer says to Flanders, he doesn't really want any harm to happen to Flanders.

The story begins with Ned inviting Homer to his BBQ but Homer says no behind Ned's back. Marge tells Homer to give Ned a chance but he is adamant to the idea which upsets Marge and Lisa. While the family's at the BBQ, Homer's home being miserable but hoping to guilt his family by not being fed... moving on. Homer decides to go to the BBQ after smelling the food. At the table, Ned reveals he's left handed and has decided to quit his job as a pharmacist to open up a store exclusively for south paws (Fun trivia fact for game night: Ned was in pharmaceuticals before he opened the Leftorium). Ned asks for Homer's opinion but after breaking the turkey bone, Homer wishes for Ned's store to go out of business and ruin him. After Homer gets some poetic justice against him, Marge encourages Bart to do something (And lampshades that millions are watching their show instead of getting exercise), when conveniently a commercial for karate appears and they agree on karate. After Homer drops Bart off for his lesson, he goes into the Leftorium where he sees that it's not getting much business (Just like my blog, but you know...) Bart becomes uninterested in karate after finding out that he needs to read before learning karate itself. Bart decides to spend his time playing games at the arcade instead where he plays "Touch of Death". At dinner, Homer talks about the lack of success the Leftorium is having while Bart tells everyone he learned "The Touch of Death" and attempts to demonstrate on Lisa. After Homer picks Bart up from "karate" (Bart tells Homer he learned the Mortal Kombat "Finish Him") Homer goes by to see that Flanders is still not getting any business. At Moe's Homer mocks Flanders and almost tells his friends about the store but decides he'd rather see Flanders fail. After a callback to a Tracy Ullman joke, Homer goes to complain to Mr. Burns about the apples. Burns then has trouble with a can opener and Homer yet again decides not to tell anyone about the Leftorium. When Homer gets back home, he see Ned selling all his stuff to try to pay the bills, and Homer being Homer decides to exploit Ned and buy a lot for only $75. Marge and Lisa scold Homer for buying it all for so little, but it doesn't affect Homer or Bart. Later Homer finds out that Ned's being audited by the Springfield Collection Agency. Homer almost tells the auditor about the Leftorium but doesn't after hearing he's being audited on Thursday. After Homer drops off Bart for "karate" he sees Ned closing down the Leftorium and he has the expression of "What have I done?" on his face (See genuine remorse). The next day, Lisa has Bart fight for her sax from the bullies but is hung from a basketball hoop by his underwear. Later, Homer goes to return the stuff to Ned but finds out that the Flanders are living in their car. Homer apologizes to Ned and he tells Ned to open the store the next day so that Homer can call everyone and tell them to get to the Leftorium. The next morning, we see the leftorium is booming with business as Ned is saved and then we have Homer homage the ending to It's a Wonderful Life.
Oh no, I only wanted a horrible plague against him not bankruptcy

Why it's here: This is a very heartwarming episode We find out that Homer may hate Ned but he'd never wish anything this bad against him and he has a true heart. The writing is excellent, the plot ends up just as it should and the jokes are great and just where they are needed.

17. Lisa's Sax (Season 9, Episode 3)
Many people really don't like Lisa, but if you couldn't tell by now, I do like her. This is one of her stronger episodes as we go into the depths of how Lisa got her signature saxophone.

After Homer and Marge reenact the opening to All in the Family, we see that Bart and Homer are irritated by Lisa playing her sax while they're trying to watch TV. Homer sends Bart up to stop her playing but it leads to Bart accidentally throwing her sax out the window and into the street where it gets mangled by everything. After Lisa brings her sax in, we see her crying with her piece of bronze in her arms (I'm reluctant to call it a sax anymore due to all the damage it took). After Lisa explains that it's more the memory of her sax rather than the sax itself, Homer goes into flashback mode to tell the story of how Lisa got her sax (And how Bart's first week of school went). We then see Kindergarten Bart and Toddler Lisa as their 1950's Peanut versions (I'll only say this once; they are adorable). As it turns out, Bart was an enthusiastic little kid who enjoyed school (Not by the end of the episode though) and Lisa was developing into the MENSA member we all know. After an assembly for the Kindergartners introducing them to the staff (And Jimbo) we see that Bart is given the most belittling teacher ever. After Bart has his first bad day, he walks up to his room without talking to Marge. After Homer thinks story over, Lisa reminds him to tell the story of her sax. After Lisa gets irritated about how Homer didn't finish her story and instead went to Bart, she asks Marge who starts off immediately with Bart. After more belittling by his teacher, Bart shows Marge a picture he drew indicating he's sad at school. When Marge goes to show Homer the drawing, Homer at first ignores it but then screams and is afraid after looking at it. After they take Bart to see Dr. T (Er I mean Dr. Hibbert with a Mr. T hairstyle) Homer and Marge go to see the school psychologist who tells Homer and Marge that Bart needs to conform and not be an individual. He then takes a shining to Lisa who completes a puzzle and suggests to Homer and Marge they nurture her gifted abilities so that she can reach her full potential. At the private pre-school it turns out it's too expensive so Marge and Homer decide against it (Yeah, I don't believe in private school until high school where colleges actually give a damn). Back in the present we find out that 5 years later Bart is still miserable in school and Lisa's gifts are still going to waste. Back in flashback, we see that there's a massive heat wave, Marge then tells Homer that they should involve Lisa in the arts. Homer doesn't want to be involved in the arts and Marge realizes that the only way they could afford something for Lisa is to dip into the AC fund. Homer says no but does promise not to buy an AC unit until they find out what they're going to do with Lisa. After Homer steals Ned's AC unit, we see Bart get depressed from all the negative reinforcement from his teacher. But it turns out that Bart's funny and he becomes the class clown, this gets Skinner's attention which causes Bart to tell Skinner to eat his shorts. Afterwards we see Homer with Lisa at Moe's where Homer proclaims he's getting his new AC unit. After they leave, Lisa walks across the street to King Toot's where Homer sees her eying up the instruments and decides to go in to buy one. Lisa picks the sax which costs $200, Homer then decides to get it for her after deciding her daughter is more important than AC. Homer than gets an inscription on the sax reading: "To Lisa, Never forget your daddy loves D'oh!" After the story we find out that Homer has another $200 in the AC fund and Lisa tries not to guilt Homer until Homer realizes that the sax wont play and Lisa gets sadder over that. During another heat wave we see that Homer did the right thing and bought Lisa a new sax that reads: "To Lisa, may your new saxophone bring you years of D'oh!" We end appropriately with a montage of Lisa playing her sax.
Now to start my million dollar career as a blues player

Why it's here: This is a very well written episode about something that is iconic to the show. The plot is great, the jokes are great and the writing of a story within a story works for this episode.

16. Kamp Krusty (Season 4 Episode 1)
If you can believe it, this was originally supposed to be the first Simpson Movie. And with a script like this, I would have paid good money to see it 3 or more times in theater.

The story begins with Bart having a dream about getting good grades and helping to burn the school down. At the breakfast table, we see that Homer promised the kids that if they got C averages they go to Kamp Krusty (Because poor literacy is: KEWL). After we see Bart's locker is essentially a lost  jungle village, we see that Lisa got a B+ in conduct which causes her to have a minor spazz out against Ms. Hoover (This is how you show Lisa upset about a grade writers. GET IT THROUGH YOUR HEADS!) After Mrs. Krabappel gives Bart his report cards with D-'s, everyone in school counts down the last 5 seconds of school and then mobs their way out. On the bus, Bart shows Lisa his "report card" to which Lisa laughs at Bart forging A+'s. When Bart takes the report card to Homer, he immediately sees it as a fake but decides to allow Bart to Kamp Krusty anyways. After Dr. Hibbert patronizes Lisa for wanting shots, we see that Marge gets sad that it's their last family dinner for 6 weeks. After the bus for Kamp Krusty leaves, all the parents celebrate right on the spot (My parents did that all the time). When they get to Kamp Krusty, we find out that Krusty isn't there but Mr. Black will be their head counselor along with Jimbo, Dolph, and Kearney. After seeing Homer and Marge enjoy not having the kids around, we see that the cabins are worse than the outhouses you find deep in the woods. After Krusty heads off to Wimbledon, we get a couple of scenes illustrating what a crap-shack the camp really is. After a song (Meant to pad this out, I kid you not) we see that the campers are being fed crap while the authoritative figures are smoking cigars and showing down on a grand feast. Marge sends a letter to the kids saying how they're doing great and Homer's getting in shape. However Kearney reads the letter and eats the cookies that came with it. Lisa decides to respond with a letter asking for Marge and Homer to save them. Being as unaware as possible, Marge and Homer thinks Lisa is just homesick and doesn't really want to leave. Later, Mr. Black tries to pass Barney in clown makeup off as Krusty but Bart refuses to accept it and leads an upheaval against Mr. Black and the bullies. After taking over the camp, Bart renames it to Camp Bart (Upsetting Lisa because he was supposed to name it Camp Freedom). After Krusty gets the news, we see Homer and Marge watch a news report about Kamp Krusty and after finding out that Bart was the leader of the uprising Homer gains the weight he lost and loses his additional hair. When Krusty goes in to try to calm Bart down, Bart calls BS and has the kids check to see if he's wearing a wire and only to reveal 3 individual marks that proves he's Krusty. Krusty apologizes for selling out to the camp and makes it up to them by taking them to Tijuana.
I own this place Mother^&#*&

Why it's here: This is a very funny, very well written episode. The plot is great, the writing is great and the inclusion of Lord of the Flies plot was just the icing on the cake.

15. Lisa's Substitute (Season 2 Episode 19)
This is a great episode about Lisa getting something she wants, and then has it taken away. This is a sad running theme throughout the show.

The story begins with the 2nd grad acting up because Ms. Hoover isn't there. It turns out that Ms. Hoover has Lyme disease and cannot teach class, forcing Skinner to until the substitute arrives. After Bart traumatizes the class with a home video of Snowball giving birth, we see the substitute teacher Mr. Bergstrom come in dressed up like a cowboy. Mr. Bergstrom is probably my favorite character that I'd like to see make another appearance if they could get good writers back, unfortunately those odds are low. Lisa immediately bonds with the teacher after she gets 2 out of 3 things wrong with his costume (He asked them to point them out) and she's given his cowboy hat. Meanwhile, Mrs. Krabappel announces that they will be electing a class president, Bart and Martin become the two candidates and Mrs. K detests the idea of Bart running. Mr. Berstrom, starts singing a song and finds an insulting drawing of him that was on Lisa's desk. After Lisa denies drawing it Mr. Bergstrom praises the drawing and Lisa gets a similar drawing but of her. After Mr. Bergstrom reads a passage from Charlotte's Web (Which makes Lisa cry) we see Mr. Bergstrom find out more about each kid by what they're good at, Lisa doesn't want to tell him so Bergstrom says she owes him something special. After school we see Mrs. K play the role of Mrs. Robinson and Bergstrom being Dustin Hoffman tells her no, much to Lisa's happiness. Later Mr. Bergstrom applauds Lisa after she plays her sax out on the schoolyard. Lisa then talks to Marge about how Mr. Bergstrom makes her feel special and Marge says Homer makes her feel that way too (I'm going to have 911 on standby). After Homer and Bart mock Mr. Bergstrom for crying while reading a sad passage, Mr. Bergstrom pulls Lisa aside to ask if she's been cheating on her homework, to which Lisa says no repeatedly. During a debate, Bart wins the class by being popular and nothing else. After Homer motivates Bart, Bart decides to try harder and he campaigns like mad to win. Lisa and Mr. Bergstrom look on at Bart as Lisa insults his tactics while Bergstrom tells Lisa she'll miss Bart when he leaves. Later Marge asks Homer to take Lisa to the museum, Homer doesn't want to go but is guilted into doing it. While at the museum, Homer finds out that Lisa thinks of Mr. Bergstrom as more of a father figure than Homer, but he just scoffs it off. Lisa complains that Homer ruined her one chance to get to know Mr. Bergstrom out of school. Marge suggests that they have him over for dinner, when Lisa goes to ask him, it turns out that Ms. Hoover got better and Mr. Bergstrom left. After Lisa runs out of class crying because he left too early, we see Mrs. K try to convince the class to vote for Martin and leaves the poll box open for recess. As Lisa tries to find him, she finds out he's leaving for another job. As Bart is celebrating his victory, he finds out nobody voted for him and he loses to Martin 2-0. As Lisa confronts Mr. Bergstrom at the train station he gives her some comforting words and leaves her with a sheet of paper reading: "You are Lisa Simpson". Back at home, Homer is sad because Bart didn't win and then Lisa lashes out against Homer for not caring about her and she runs up to her room. Marge tells Homer to go up to her room and apologize, after an emotional conversation, Homer apologizes for not being a good father and Lisa apologizes for calling him a baboon. Homer then goes to Bart and comforts him that being class president is not that great (I hate the writers of season 20). Homer then helps Maggie get her pacifier back as he goes to Marge to finish the night as a good husband as well.
Can you come back Mr. Bergstrom, I need you again

Why it's here: This is a very heartwarming episode, you cannot tell me that you felt sad for Lisa when Mr. Bergstrom took that train and left her there. The writing is amazing, the plot is great and the jokes are fantastic, all and all, this was a great episode.

14. My Sister, My Sitter (Season 8 Episode 17)
Who hasn't had a little sister who they hate and would never listen to even if she were in charge. The constant battle that is Bart Vs Lisa always gives great material.

The story begins with Marge and Homer seeing the renovations to Springfield docks and deciding that they want to go their on opening night. Meanwhile, Lisa and Janey are in Lisa's room reading the "Babysitter Twins" where Lisa admits she likes the responsibilities that come with babysitting. That Sunday, Lisa has Lovejoy tell everyone that she will babysit for fairly cheap. Lisa's a little depressed that nobody wants her while Marge tells her that adults don't want 8-year olds watching their kids, they want teens. Ned then comes over and asks Homer to watch over Rod and Todd but Homer says no, Lisa says she'll do it as Ned agrees. As Lisa goes to babysit them, she finds out that they are pansies who don't like to play games and freak out over moths and ladybugs. Lisa tucks them into bed and Ned thanks Lisa for her work and decides to tell others about her. After we see Lisa doing babysitting jobs for Wiggum and Hibbert, we see Homer and Marge get ready to go to the docks as they reveal that Lisa will be the babysitter, much to Bart's anger. Homer and Marge drive to the dock almost hitting a few people and parking in the most inconvenient place possible. As Lisa tries to feed Bart, he acts up and eventually gives Maggie coffee ice cream which causes Maggie to be hyper. After we see some nice buildings on the docks, Lisa tries to get Maggie down and Bart starts crank calling some people to get Lisa in trouble. After Lisa tries to get Bart to go to bed, all the people Bart called come to the house and Lisa tells them all to leave because Bart tricked them. After Lisa and Bart get into a war of attrition to get Bart to go to bed, Bart accidentally falls backwards down the steps and Lisa feels terrible about it. After Bart wakes up we find out that Bart's right elbow was dislocated and Bart decides to use that to get Lisa in trouble with Homer and Marge. We then see Homer get embarrassed while getting trapped in a water fountain. After trying to make it worse, Bart passes out and Lisa tries to call the hospital but is denied because of Bart's prank calls. Lisa thinks about calling Dr. Hibbert but decides against it because then Marge and Homer will find out, she instead decides to go to Dr. Nick. After putting Bart in a wheelbarrow and Maggie in a cage, she finds out that it'll take too long if she wait and decides to walk to the hospital instead. After Wiggum get's Lisa's attention, Lisa notices that Bart fell out of the wheelbarrow and is rolling down the hill. Lisa chases him and finds out it's right near the docks. Everyone in town then sees Lisa with the wheelbarrow as Dr. Hibbert diagnoses Bart with a dislocated elbow caused by falling down the stairs and bad babysitting. The next morning, Bart apologizes to Lisa for ruining her as she decided to give up the business. She decides to go back in though after Hibbert and Flanders both ask her to babysit their kids.
Let's see if I drop Bart off at the gorge, nobody will ever find him

Why it's here: This is a great Bart-Lisa episode, the writing for this one is fantastic, it really captures Bart's bad attitude and his loving side as well. The plot is great and the jokes are very good.

13. Lisa's Pony (Season 3 Episode 8)
The writers will occasionally take an idea from one episode and make an entire episode out of it (Bart creating a soapbox derby car). This is a story that is fully fleshed out and is great.

The story begins with an homage to 2001: A Space Odyssey showing Homer as a dumb ape. Lisa then calls Homer asking him to go get her a new saxophone reed. Homer tells her he'll get one As Homer goes to King Toot's to get a reed, he decides he has enough time to down a beer at Moe's. After Homer finishes his beer, he sees the store is closed and goes back to Moe's to complain about the owner of the store (Who just happens to be sitting next to him). After some more from the talent show (Including Bart's impressions) Homer begs the man to open the store and he says no until Moe tells him to open it because he owes him. Lisa begins to worry that Homer wont be there with the reed and Marge tries to comfort her until she realizes that Homer's probably drinking. After Homer finally figures out he needs a saxophone reed, he gets it but is too late as Lisa stinks it up at the talent show (I question why Bleeding Gums Murphy doesn't go to bat for her, but whatever). Homer tries to make it up to her by buying her ice cream, but Lisa's to mad at Homer to forgive him now. Homer then watches tapes of Lisa as a baby and realizes he's never been a good father to her, Marge suggests that Homer spends time with Lisa, and Homer tries it. After failing to bond with Lisa Homer decides for a quick fix and just buy her a pony (Yeah I know it's a bad lesson, but as the creators have said "I always do the opposite of whatever Homer does"). Marge tries to prevent Homer from doing it but he does it anyways. After finding out what ponies cost, Homer goes to the power plant to get a loan which Mr. Burns puts high interest on it. After Homer brings the pony home, he puts it in Lisa's bed as the recreate the scene from The Godfather. Lisa thanks Homer for the pony and she loves him again. After Lisa shows off her new pony, Lisa tells Homer to take the pony to a stable to be kept. After a scene where Lisa expresses more love for Homer, we find out that the expenses are too much and Homer decides to take a second job at the Kwik-E-Mart. There are some scenes in between of Lisa with her pony and Homer working, but they aren't too important so moving on. We then see Homer come back and explain his plan to Marge, this doesn't work as Homer immediately falls asleep from exhaustion. After seeing a scene of Lisa and her pony, we see Apu find Homer sleeping on the job and he berates him for it. After a dream sequence, Homer goes to work and the staff decides to recycle old clips. As Homer's preparing to go to work at the Kwik-E-Mart, Marge reveals to Lisa that Homer's been working two jobs to keep the pony. Lisa then decides her father's wellbeing is better than her owning a pony and she gives it back to the stables. Lisa then goes to Homer and tells him she loves one big dumb animal more than the pony. Homer quits and gives Lisa a piggyback ride back home.
Don't worry, one day you'll own a pony for real

Why it's here: This is a very heartwarming episode that has a bad moral at first but makes it up with a great ending. The plot is unoriginal bu masterfully executed, the writing is tremendous and the jokes are great.

12. Brother From Another Series (Season 8 Episode 16)
Sideshow Bob is so good that the writers decided to give him his brother from Fraiser. Yet again, Sideshow Bob episodes are awesome, but this isn't even the best Sideshow Bob episode.

The story begins with the family watching Krusty the Clown do a show in prison. Krusty then stumbles upon Sideshow Bob, Sideshow Bob gives his obligatory backstory andthe fact he's tried to kill Bart which causes Bart to run out screaming. Bart tells his family that he's afraid that Bob will get out and kill him. We then cut to Bob leading a sermon to which Lovejoy praises him. Lovejoy tells Bob he recommended Bob for the work release program, Bob thinks that nobody will hire him and then we are introduced to Bob's brother Cecil (Played by David-Hyde Pierce, Kelsey Grammer's brother on Fraiser). After a funny conversation between the two (The Mars joke is a classic to me) Cecil accepts what Bob has done in the past and accepts him as a changed man. As Bob gets released, there's an angry mob who wants Bob to go back in. Sideshow Bob then convinces them all he's changed but Bart is adamant to the idea he's changed and tells Quimby that he's still evil. The writers decide to make it blatantly obvious that they are ripping off Fraiser and we cut to the inside of Cecil's apartment. After Cecil pours a glass of wine for Bob, Bart prays to God to strike down SS Bob to which Homer and Marge tell Bart he shouldn't do that. As Bob and Cecil are having dinner, we find out that Cecil is a hydrological and hydrodynamical engineer and he blames Bob for ruining his chance to be Krusty's sidekick. After a flashback of Cecil's audition as Sideshow Cecil, we find out that Cecil's going to be building a hydroelectric dam on the Springfield River and Bob's going to be a construction supervisor. After Bob spots Bart across the river, we see Bart disrupt a date between Mrs. Krabappel and SS Bob which upsets Bob and makes Bart even more paranoid of Bob. We then see Bob complain about the workers he's been given and how Bart wont leave him alone (And make an eerie statement). Bart gets Lisa to go search through Bob's trash as Bob catches them and returns them to Homer and Marge. Lisa tries to convince Bart that SS Bob has changed but Bart decides to check his construction trailer with Lisa for clues. While in the trailer, Bart finds a lot of money embezzled as Bob breaks into his office. After he spots them, they run into the dam and run away from Bob a la Scooby-Doo. When Bob finally catches him he admits he doesn't know where the money came from and Cecil was in charge of the materials. In a twist, Cecil comes in with a gun and dynamite and admits he plans on destroying the dam and embezzle $15 million. Cecil then says that people wont suspect him because Bob's been working there and unofficially he's doing this to get back at Bob for stealing his dream. As Cecil escapes, Bob mocks Lisa for saying it's hopeless to escape and he clogs a turbine so they can escape. Bart is reluctant but decides to trust Bob for once. After escaping, Bob and Lisa go up to the dynamite to defuse it. After Cecil goes over his checklist, Bart jumps on Cecil and Cecil then accidentally throws his money off the cliff. After Lisa points out to Bob what Bart and Cecil are doing, Cecil grabs Bart and throws him off the cliff. SS Bob uses the dynamite as a rope and swings across to grab Bart. Cecil then grabs the plunger to kill them but Bob cuts the wire and they fall until Bob lands on a pipe (On his crotch, guess there won't be any Bob juniors running around...). After Bob jokes about killing Bart, the police come to arrest Cecil and Bob even though Bob's innocent. The dam then collapses and a tidal wave hits Springfield. Bob then tries to prove his innocence but sounds like a madman and they are taken to prison where Bob fights off Cecil for the top bunk.
We're too civilized to be in this world Cecil. Where's my monocle Cecil?

Why it's here: Sideshow Bob is always great, this is a great example of Bob's character and the plot is genius. The writing is great and the jokes are on Sideshow Bob level. This episode rose to the occasion, but still, there is ONE Sideshow Bob episode that's better.

11. I Love Lisa (Season 4 Episode 15)
You know you're in for some good episodes when you see this episode at #11. This episode is on almost everyone's top 10 and for good reason, it's great.

The story begins with everyone celebrating Valentines Day in their own ways. Homer forgets to get Marge a Valentines day present as we see him doing his normal routine to get to the car to get something for Marge from the Kwik-E-Mart. After buying a box of chocolates for $100, we see Lisa's class is about to exchange valentines as we see Ralph is up to his "special" behavior and the class laughs at him. Skinner then scolds the person (Bart) who made fake heart candy with bad messages on them as he has a Vietnam flashback similar to Apocalypse Now. After everyone exchanges valentines, we see that Ralph didn't get a single valentine, felling sorry for him, Lisa readdresses a valentine and gives it to Ralph. Ralph thinks she got it just for him and he feels much better. After a scene where Bart makes a prank with a cow heart, we see Ralph walk Lisa home and he talks about the valentine on the way there. After an I&S cartoon, Krusty announces his 29th anniversary show and tickets are exclusive. Lisa tells Marge that she's afraid that Ralph thinks she likes him for the valentine even though she gave it out of pity. Marge tells Lisa to tell Ralph that she's not ready to "like him" yet. Lisa then tells Ralph that as we then see Ralph at home where we find out that he's Clancy Wiggum's son. Clancy tells Ralph to be persistent about pursuing Lisa. After we see another promo for Krusty's anniversary show, we see Ralph come to try to see Lisa as she tells Homer to make up an excuse. Homer gets Ralph to tar his roof for Ralph to win Lisa's love. During auditions for the President's day pageant, we see Ms. Hoover pick Lisa as Mrs. Washington and Ralph for George Washington because Clancy is blackmailing Ms. Hoover. Lisa detests the idea of being with Ralph in the play as she gets a package from Ralph. The package contains a Malibu Stacy convertible with tickets to Krusty's anniversary show in the trunk. After the ride over, we see the anniversary show as he shows some clips of him with some very famous people. Krusty then picks Ralph as Lisa embarrasses him by telling Ralph that she never liked him and the valentine was only out of pity. Lisa then feels bad after Bart shows her the recording. After Clancy tries to intimidate Homer for what Lisa did, we see Lisa and the school prepare for the pageant as Ralph comes in to prepare. After some other scenes, we see Ralph burn the valentine and play one of the best George Washington an 8 year can play. After the pageant, Lisa gives Ralph a new card saying they should be friends and all is well.
I think we should see other people Ralph

Why it's here: This is a great episode during season 4 and it stand the test of time as one of the greatest episodes of the show. The plot is great, the writing is fantastic and this show is very memorable among the fans.