Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Episode 8: The Burns and the Bees

Looking back there have been few Mr. Burns based episodes and only one Burns-Lisa episode (The Old Man and the Lisa). This episode is an interesting one, since it really isn't terrible, but only goes to show the dipping quality of the series at this point. So really, is there any hope for a billionaire vs environmentalist episode? Let's find out.

We start off with Mr. Burns traveling with Mr. Smithers to the Billionaire retreat as we see what goes on with the rich minds of America (So they're all rich average Joes? Who knew)(Including Mr. Burns? PFFFT). Meanwhile back at Springfield, Bart is told by the bullies to knock a bees' nest down on some second graders (including Lisa), which he agrees to after some padding by Kearney. Lisa jumps on the hive to try to save the others (In an over-the-top way. What, is there any other way you can think of?), but is surprised to find out there are no bees in it. Lisa opens the hive to find them all dead, and Willie gives her some exposition about how bees are dying around the world. Groundskeeper Willie then reveals that he's a beekeeper himself and his bees with pun names have all been dying (If you wanted them to live longer you would have called them bee 1-infinite). We cut back to the retreat as we see more money jokes being shoved in (Net worth having Gates over Buffet, scary stories involving the Security and Exchange Commissions, large poker games, etc).
It's the bee version of Countdown! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!
Mr. Burns then wins a basketball team called the "Austin Celtics" from the Rich Texan with a 9-high hand (The lowest hand one can have is 7-high, who would be betting with those hands? And really? The AUSTIN Celtics? Not even an imaginary team, just ripping off the Celtics by replacing Boston with Austin? Hey, I'm not the highly paid writer whose job is to make these jokes). We cut to Lisa telling Homer that they need to do something or the bees will die. Homer at first is reluctant until she tells him no bees=no honey (No fruit, no vegetables, no animals that eat fruit and vegetables, no bears, no- oh wait, she doesn't explain this)(Who is she, and what has she done with Lisa?). Homer then has a dream about a honey famine and decides he needs to do something (It involves Wall-E as well. I should do a new count involving stupid dreams but these don't piss me off as much). They meet up with Professor Frink, who explains that the bees have been dying of bee measles (Is anyone else not finding this funny?)(See, measles are barely funny. If they were dying of bee WEASELS.....I saw you smile there). Frink decides to collect enough healthy bees to create a new colony. One then just happens to land on Lisa's face and thus a colony of bees converge on her face... (I'll be at the bar if anyone needs me)(GET BACK HERE!).
I think this speaks for itself
Lisa convinces Marge to let her keep the bees on her face as Bart decides to have fun and mold the bees to make her look like Milhouse (And slashers smirked). We then see the Springfield Celtics facing the Dallas Mavericks, with Mark Cuban deciding to be even more annoying than he already is after his team DOESN'T score a 3 (Seriously the one who made that had a green jersey on; the Mavericks are blue and white. Nice job, editor). We then see Mark Cuban continue his hijinks (No wonder they sell beer at games. If I paid $2200 for a courtside seat and all I got to see was this jackass delaying my game, I'd want to be hammered). Yeah, I know he's not really this distracting in real life and he does have one of the elite basketball clubs, but why is he blown so out of proportion here, that it makes him look like Dane Cook on the court during halftime? Mr. Burns then confirms that Mark Cuban's a billionaire with a long bit of padding- er, I mean "Handshake" (Could always do a Google search but whatever)(Mr. Burns? The man who answers his phone with 'Ahoy hoy'?). After Mark goes back to being a pompous jackass, we cut to back home with the family having breakfast consisting of pancakes and syrup (Cue Homer eating the bees that land on his pancakes).
I want attention!
Marge is then sucked into the plot as she "remembers" an abandoned greenhouse that'd be perfect for the bees (Seriously, the writing makes it out to be like she's known this place her whole life, and it's never explained how she knew of it). Marge and Lisa go to the greenhouse and release the bees for them to live there. Later on, Mr. Burns comes out trying to be a funloving owner like Mark by renaming the team the Springfield Excitement (What was wrong with that being the first name?)(Too obvious?) and being more involved with the game (including forgetting that Austria-Hungary is no longer a country despite the fact he fought in WWII in multiple episodes, dummies). After Smither gives a long bit of history to explain that, we further see that Mr. Burns is old and not with the times based on his cheerleader selection (I wonder if the writers were afraid that people might think that the Simpsons weren't with the times either so they dedicated episodes purely to topical events). After Mr. Burns successfully drives away any fans, he gets a daydream where Mark Cuban recommends that he builds a new arena. Mr. Burns decides to create his new arena right next to the greenhouse where the bees are (Which is next to the prison... I don't know, this makes about as much financial sense as Jacksonville having a football team). Later, Lisa debates Mr. Burns about the location of his arena and how he can't have it there. Unfortunately, because Springfield is about as environmental as New Jersey, the town agrees with Mr. Burns and allows him to build his arena (That, and Mr. Burns' ability to convince the town they need basketball now by... saying they need it).
Can you believe what they've done to our characters? I mean it's absolute garbage!
After the greenhouse gets destroyed, Lisa goes to Moe's with Homer and complains to Moe about how evil Mr. Burns is for what he did (And apparently get drunk on milk, I can't fake this people. That was actually written in. Someone got paid to write that)(It's that or REAL alcohol). Moe then suggests to Homer that they combine his African bees (Why does he have African bees...?) with her bees to make a super bee (Uh, it doesn't work that way, either that or we wouldn't be worried about honey bees dying around the world). We cut to six weeks later (and one completed arena. I thought those things took months to build)(SCIENCE!) when Homer shows Lisa the new bees, which they find out are dangerous. Homer is okay with it because he thinks they won't get far (...yes, yes they will) until Lisa points out that the new arena is shaped like a beekeeper's hive (Interesting design. I personally would have gone with convention instead of playing into the plot). Mr. Burns, after lampshading how flawed the system is for building his arena, foolishly opens the roof and allows the bees in (This isn't a football arena; basketball was always meant to be played indoors in a controlled environment).
A deadly bee weapon took over this arena. Bees my God
After the bees take over the arena, Homer and Lisa go to see the aftermath. They find out that they took over and Mr. Burns is angry about it (Lisa's excited though at the fact that killer bees took over a multi-million dollar stadium. Sure put thousands of people out of a job just so your stupid bees can have a home, well done Lisa, well done. And considering that killer bees don't pollinate well, Lisa is happy because she brought in aggressive bees to harass the town and not pollinate flowers, good job.)(Seriously, where's the REAL Lisa? Anyone seen her? About yay-high, blond hair, intelligent, possesses foresight?). A year later, it turns out that Mr. Burns sold the stadium for over $800 million, making him worth only $996 million instead of being a billionaire. They decide to rip off The Godfather, having Mr. Burns play the role of Salvatore Tessio as they decide to throw him in the millionaire's camp.

Final Judgment: This episode is bad - not terrible but bad. The plot is stupid, the writing is half-assed, and the jokes are nonexistent as you are left scratching your head at what was supposed to be accomplished. Now this was another example of the writers just picking up the newspaper and deciding to make an episode based on what's popular in the newspaper leaving people who didn't know about this alone in the dark.

Final Grade: 3.9/10 Just meh, nothing more nothing less

No comments:

Post a Comment