Monday, January 24, 2011

Episode 12: Homer the Father

Well let's see here, Homer trying to be a better father by modeling the parenting of an 80's sitcom father? If you can't guess why that pisses me off here are two clues:
  1. 1980's sitcom father with good parenting, hmmm....
  2. Homer trying to be a good father to his children, where have I heard that before?
Okay, okay, so I'm nitpicking a little, but you have to admit it's stale, old and really it's a basic staple of Homer's character. He does fail at parenting, but it's not like he doesn't try to be a good father and husband, he just isn't good at it. So to make an entire episode about it (Again) really just comes off as lazy and "Screw it, we're getting paid to write this shit so ha-ha!" With that out of the way, let's take a look at this.

We begin with Homer and Lisa watching TV as they find a show with an opening that somehow is longer than their own (Seriously it's not til the 2:32 mark that we actually get something off the ground. Note to the writers, you do have less time with the time commercials take out, but it doesn't mean you can just pad out the episode as you wish). We then see that the show is basically a father who's a dentist and makes a lot of bad corny jokes, and he happens to have his office in his house... no comment (Although I did smile once, just because Lisa is not amused by this crap, she is suddenly my favorite character for this episode already). After another few bits from the sitcom (Along with Homer saying something I think was supposed to be funny, but I only snickered because it's a lot like how this show works) we see Bart and Milhouse biking down plot device street as his bike breaks down.
Yeah I feel the same way Lisa feels everytime I watch an episode this season
Fortunately because he's on plot device street, he happens to break down right in front of a bike shop and he starts to daydream about owning the minibike (He's more a skateboard daredevil to me). Bart then goes back home and begs Homer for the bike, Homer then daydreams about what Patrick Waters (Father) would do and decides not to buy Bart the bike because he wouldn't appreciate it... WTF?! Okay I want to do another poll, who else thinks this is the opposite of what he'd do? I mean Homer would more than happily buy Bart whatever he wants because he's very impulsive and not that good of a father. After Bart complains about Homer being out of character, Homer strangles Bart, but then stops because of what he's learned from the sitcom (Okay, seriously, who actually takes any advice from a TV show?! Plus this doesn't make any sense, I mean all we've seen is; Homer watches sitcom, Homer decides to be a good father. I think the writers forgot step 2). Homer then goes inside where he tells Marge he feels bad for not getting Bart something he wanted and Marge decides to kiss him because of it (Marge for all you know, Bart could have been asking for medical attention for a broken leg).
He's right behind me isn't he?
Marge explains that she appreciate him being a good dad (Okay yet again, she doesn't know what he asked for, he could have asked for a tutor for a class he's failing, okay that's not like Bart, but you get the point). After they have "Homer's a good father sex" (Second best sex behind "I've killed two evil men, rescued a firefighter and adopted a stray puppy sex") Bart talks with Lisa online using "Generic online webcam chat" (You know this scene is entirely pointless as Bart lives ONE ROOM AWAY. Plus is it just me or does Bart have explosive teleportation as he arrives next to Lisa in less than a second?). Bart asks Lisa how he can make money to buy the minibike and she gives him suggestions but he scoffs them off except for bargaining with Homer (Remind me the point of that? We're back at square one). After another sitcom bit (Where we see Homer wearing the man's sweater... Okay when I made the Bill Cosby reference, I didn't expect the writers to actually make this connection, this is just extremely lazy) Bart asks Homer about making an agreement for him to get good grades in exchange for money (Sounds familiar, but I might be connecting dots that aren't there). After another montage (Yippee) we see Homer watching The Fresh Prince of Bel Air but with an alien (The creativity detector can't take this much abuse, please stop it).
Well according to our script, we don't have a second act... Quick Bart think something up!
Bart then comes in with an A but Homer's too distracted by the stupid show to pay attention (Remind me again, is the plot about Homer being a better father, or watching shitty television shows?) Homer tells Bart that his reward is the feeling of accomplishment, and it pisses him off as he storms out of the room (But Homer decides that he needs the last dumb line before the act break. Don't you just love it when the writers don't give a damn about the audience?) We cut back to Homer watching more television shows that would be rejected by MTV (Seriously, this is just awful padding) as Bart's still angry about how Homer broke his promise. Apu then arrives to give Homer his nuclear plant badge as he exposits the rest of the plot while Bart overhears it (Yeah that sounded so natural Apu, not contrived and stupid in any way.) Bart decides to write a letter to multiple countries offering the US nuclear secrets in exchange for a minibike (Way to think big, most terrorists ask for millions of dollars and protection from the US). Can anyone explain how this plot went from "Homer wants to be a good father" to "Bart becomes an international terrorist in order to get a minibike"? I'm watching this and I don't get how we got here. After Bart doesn't get a reply, we see Bart biking up a hill as he's being followed by a CIA van and fails to outrun them (Guess he doesn't need a new bike then).
WAIT! Our unfunny joke organizations need screen time
But it turns out that CIA stands for "Chinese Intelligence in America" and they're interested (This is followed by some other bad puns, you know the CIA thing wasn't original, but it did have some charm, way to suck it all away). The Chinese tell Bart to transfer all the information to a flash drive but Bart begins to have second thoughts (Gee I wonder why, maybe because he's a 10 year old who didn't think this through. I'm sorry, but I cannot get attached to this plot at all, it just seems way to disconnected from the plots this show is known for, I feel like I'm watching a bad episode of 24). As Homer's watching the sitcom again (Has Homer even left his spot on that couch?) Bart approaches him to spend more time with him (As we get some thought bubbles to explain what we're seeing. I love the fact that the writers think we have the brains of a lobotomized lab rat). After another montage (Seriously?) we see Bart and Homer at the plant as Homer passes out and Bart puts the self-aware USB drive into multiple CPUs (Seriously, he just plugs it in and it automatically knows what to download. Uh Writers, that's not the way they work).
I'm sorry Homer, but I'm afraid that's not funny
Later, Homer tucks Bart into bed as Bart sneaks out after Homer leaves. Bart then goes to the zoo where he exchanges the minibike left for him for a folder containing the USB drive (Nice way to not give a damn about what you're doing). Bart wakes up the next morning finding out that Homer bought him a minibike already for being such a good son. Bart starts to feel guilty about betraying his country for a minibike he was apparently going to get (Well actually, he wouldn't have gotten it unless he planned on betraying his country in the first place. Great message for the audience there writers). Later Bart decides to ride his bike around unenthusiastically, Homer watches as he wonders why his TV fathering didn't work (Well I got a list of reasons right here, but I don't have enough space to read them all). Bart then rides off as Homer follows him to the zoo, Bart finds out the USB drive is still there as the Chinese arrive and try to intimidate Bart into giving them the drive. After Bart swallows the USB drive, the Chinese bring out their bad stereotype merchandise (Well if it was American stuff, it'd break instantly). Homer then arrives as he offers himself to them (I'd like to know how Homer knew about the USB drive, he wasn't around when Bart swallowed it, consistent writing? What's that!?) and they agree.
I'm calling BS here, not the idea that Homer could build a power plant, the idea that the Chinese find Homer funny
In China, Homer is given a huge thanks because he helped them create a nuclear power plant (That explodes instantly, defying all laws of physics, nuclear science, international law, character consistency...). Homer then gets home and we see Bart and Homer sitting on the couch as the episode seemingly ends with a long Itchy and Scratchy cartoon (God bless padding and lazy writing, how else would they get paid thousands as thousands of children in Africa die of starvation and curable diseases). Oh wait, in the credits we get a pointless scene as we find out what the actors are like now (Because my life would be incomplete if I didn't know how their worthless lives are now).

Final Verdict: This episode is terrible, the plot is a complete mess as it's pretty hard to determine what we're supposed to be following. I can't even say it's two different plots as it's more like "Incohesive plot 1A" and "Incohesive plot 1B". The jokes are non-existent, the writing is terrible, the transitions for the "plot" are just terrible and lazy and it's just a huge mess, plain and simple. Joel Cohen has reestablished himself as a man who just cannot write for this show.

Final Grade: 1.8/10 I still have no clue what happened in this episode. Tune in next week where I do the mid-season report card

1 comment:

  1. I'll Laugh at Homer Cry, He Said, "This Is My Favourite Song Now. Sorry... "Don't Fear the Reaper." for the Music of the Key of C Major.

    The Credits Is So Fun.