Monday, January 9, 2012

Episode 10: Politically Inept, With Homer Simpson

You know, the last time you saw anything from this blog, it was positive. I wish I could say the same thing for this entry, but of all the writers they decided to retain from the Al Jean "Error" *Rimshot* John Frink should NOT have been one of them (Along with Kelley and Lazebnik, but they haven't shown up this season). And THIS is a prime example of why he shouldn't have been retained. I know a writer isn't SOLEY responsible for every moment in an episode, but like directors of movies; they get all the glory for successes and all the criticisms for the failures. So despite random complaints I pin on Frink, I know there are others to blame and praise as well. Without further delay, let's take a look.

The episode begins with the family at the airport as they are apparently going to someone's wedding (Really it doesn't matter what the reason is that they are flying, it becomes pointless after the 5 minute mark). Homer then puts his luggage on the scale and it turns out to be 2 pounds too heavy. Now let's play a little game, it's called "What's the punchline?" Okay, so the joke setup was "Homer's bag was too heavy" is the punchline:

  1. The bag is full of bricks/rocks
  2. The bag is carrying something illegal
  3. The bag is carrying something unessential and funny
  4. The bag is carrying something random and not funny
Hmm... what isn't essential here... well I guess this hooker's arm can go back home
Homer then goes to open his bag as he pulls out high school yearbooks and tells Marge in the most contrived way to stop embarrassing himself in front of strangers (So yeah, the least funny and most painful option was chosen here. And people wonder why I think John Frink is a bad writer). After some more padding from this already unfunny scene (Seriously, why is this scene still going? It's just dragging at this point) we see the family go through security where Maggie's bottle is tested by a baby NSA agent (Just accept it and it'll hurt less) and Homer gets a massage when told he's getting a pat down. Oh and before I forget, they decide to include a fart joke in that massage scene as well... Who wants my job? I will pay anyone $50 to take this off my hands right n- *Rereads contract* nevermind, I'm stuck here for at least two more years. Anyways, Homer tries to put some luggage in the overhead compartment as it doesn't fit but in the end he is able to fit it in there, while at the same time pushing it out the airplane... okay, they screwed up this jokes here by having the SAME bag go in and get pushed out. The joke has one bag go in and force ANOTHER bag out, how lazy are these people? I know this is a nitpick, but it's basic logic that we're dealing with here. Afterwards, the plane is delayed due to something unrelated (Ha-ha?) and they decide to turn off the air and allow ethnic food to be eaten... I don't get it, either this is some reference I'm missing or the equivalent of throwing darts at a board for joke structuring.

It's funny because all ethnic people bring food on the plane... nope?
That's not it? Well back to the drawing board
So after 7 hours of waiting (Because unnecessary exaggeration is funny dammit!) they are still grounded and Homer decides he needs to use the bathroom but is denied because he needs to remain seated. Okay, this scene is another example of why I personally cannot stand these jokes; when Homer tells the stewardess he needs to use the bathroom she says; "You should have thought of that before you drank the fluids you need to live". NOBODY TALKS LIKE THAT! I hate these types of jokes because they are written for sitcom characters, not human beings, when a joke ceases to have humanity behind it, it ceases to be funny. If you mock something like this (A robot saying these lines) it's passable, but when a human says it and it's supposed to be taken serious is when I get pissed. Okay rant over, let's continue. After a bad text joke, Homer decides that the best thing to do now is to grab the intercom (With endless cord, seriously this cord defies physics) to make a scene while running down the plane (You just know the staff reads about what us "Haters" hate about this show and decided to amplify it in this episode). Homer then locks himself in the other bathroom (Why he just didn't go to that one in the first place is beyond me) and decides to rant about how the airlines screw over people like him (Oh you mean the same way the writing staff continues to screw over the legacy of this show?)
Okay, according to this, the cord wounded up is roughly 8-10 feet long
Still wound up and he's been running for a while
The cord is stretched throughout coach and yet looks like the terminal is right outside the door
And now the cord itself is gone. Animation at it's finest folks
Suddenly, the Air Marshall gets out of his seat (Why he was on THAT plane in coach I will never know) to try to get Homer out as Homer decides to barge through him and the stewardesses with a lunch cart. On the lunch cart, Homer decides he needs to give an epic speech while Bart is recording it all on his phone that can change angles and locations depending on where Homer is. Okay, two problems with this

  1. Like I said, Bart is stationary while recording, yet when he uploads it, we get multiple camera angles. Just saying
  2. Yeah... for the way Homer has acted, he does NOT deserve a speech here. Or at least we cannot take his speech seriously, despite what the writers say
After Homer falls out of the plane, he gets beaten up by some security guards (Along with a bad joke) and Marge gets upset with Homer's actions while it seems like the rest of the plane passengers loved Homer for it (So Marge represents reality while the plane passengers represent delusional thoughts... makes sense to me). Later, we see Homer getting examined by security as Bart decides to upload his fake video with as many tags as possible to get maximum viewership (I like how Bart puts in the tag of 'Classic Simpsons' as if to tell us "We know we're producing shit, we just don't care") We then get a montage of people watching Bart's fake video as apparently it got a lot of attention and made Homer famous (Where have I heard this before on this show? Hmm...)
I guess if I was stupid enough to smoke while pumping gas,
I'd be stupid enough to follow his every word as well
At the Kwik-E-Mart we see Homer try to buy some beer in disguise, but is recognized immediately as he tells Apu that the video got over 150 million hits and he can't go anywhere without being recognized (Hang on a sec *Does a quick search* As of now, there are only 47 videos with over 150 millions views and the majority of them are modern songs with none being published after April 2011. If you don't get what I'm going at here, it's the fact that the writers have NO clue how the internet or reality in general works). After Ol' Gil recognizes Homer, he is greeted by a small crowd of people who want to thank him for acting like an asswipe on the plane (There's a difference between standing up for what you believe in and acting like a jackass). Oh by the way, small animation mistake here; Sideshow Mel appears in front of Homer, then behind and then in front again. Consistency is too damn hard. After Homer realizes that reality does not apply here, he decides he needs to be Jerkass Homer all the time... *Starts to bite arm off* Still less painful than this episode. We then see Homer appear on a political talk show as apparently his airplane rant now qualifies him to make political decisions (Dear God, when I said Homer was going to be an 'Instant expert' in my season preview, I didn't think it would be THIS bad. I thought there'd be SOME effort put in for why people would value his opinion, there is NOTHING going for Homer here).
We're back! And now we ask Homer who our President should be based off his viral video
However, the host (Nash) and his co-host (I'm calling her Nad) bash Homer a bit for no true reason (Take him down a peg perhaps? Doubtful since according to the writers Homer is God and we should all love him). During the commercial break, Marge encourages Homer to win by ranting and raving (NO MARGE! DO NOT ENCOURAGE HIM!) After the break, Homer decides to say he is an honest American and because he says that, he apparently won... I'm not going to think about it too much, it hurts too much already. After Homer is congratulated by his family, the television executives (I don't think the station is ever identified, so I'm just going to say this is a cable show) and is told that he will be given his own show. Homer agrees as long as it's done his way "Classy and sophisticated" which leads into an obnoxious, loud, and annoying introduction (Do it once; funny, do it twice; a little bit funny, do it 3,486 times in the past 5 years; NOT FUNNY!) So Homer's show begins with him introducing himself and we get into his first story about a Nebraska High School dropping Football for soccer an- ZZZ.... I'm sorry, but these parts of the episode bored me. These segments were just boring, it was just Homer being loud and crying at the end. If loud noises interest you, okay, but for me they were just boring.
There, there Homer. I don't hate YOU. You're just poorly written
After we see Homer cry a lot (By the way, this has become a pet peeve of mine; Homer crying for the sake of crying. If he cries over something like death or something sad, okay then. But he literally cries over the prospect of a High School dropping football) we cut to Moe's Tavern as Carl questions why he cries so much and Lenny just writes it off as patriotism (I write it up as awful writing). Back home, we see Homer has become famous for his show (Gary Stu status achieved!) as Lisa questions why he cries and we get an unfunny "Ironic" scene (The scene's not ironic if the setup is contrived). Marge informs Homer that she's concerned about the influence his show has on people, but Homer insists that he's just playing a character (I wonder how John Frink can walk through doors, what with that inflated head of his). Back on Homer's show (Along with ANOTHER unfunny "Ironic" moment, like I said before, it's not funny when you do it every other scene) Homer decides to convey some BS message about American using steak and gravy as 'symbols' (Later, I'll discuss how the sleeping bag of the Economy is protected by the Tent of the U.S. Government. See I can make up this shit too). Again, Homer goes into some meaningless speech that according to the music should have a meaning and ends it by putting the empty gravy boat on his head (Should have been a dunce hat instead).
You should laugh because it's a Glenn Beck joke 1 year too late
Lisa then approaches Homer asking what the gravy boat is supposed to symbolize and Homer says it doesn't symbolize anything (Hey writers, does this symbol mean anything to you; "$.$") Lisa is concerned that it'll lead somewhere while Home thinks nothing of it, cue hundreds of people putting a gravy boat on their head and thinking it means something (Did I say the writers viewed Homer as God? What I meant to say was; The writers view Homer as EVERYONE'S God). The next day, we find out that the Republican Party is reaching out to Homer to give his endorsement to one of their next presidential candidates (And it seems that the writing staff is waiting outside  of "The First Church of Homer" waiting for it to overflow). I mean there is only so much bullshit I can take. This is beyond ridiculous and lazy, this is just a horribly written story about some smug asswipe who started off by acting up on a plane to "Pick our president for us oh great one". I just want that to sink in. Okay, let's continue. After Lisa and Marge express their concern about Homer picking out a candidate for president (FINALLY!) Homer goes to Republican Headquarters where Ted Nugent arrives to act badass enough to get Homer to pick him (It's a sad day when they have been able to find a candidate worse than Sarah Palin to act as a 'nominee').
Dammit, almost hit his head
After Lisa expresses her disgust for Homer endorsing Ted Nugent (Dear God this episode's pacing is slow) we get a family scene where everyone except Homer expresses their disgust for Ted (Well right after they wipe all that brown off their noses.) we cut to nighttime as Homer is approached by James Madison and is taken away to be shown something (Please let it be a fiery grave, please let it be a fiery grave, please let it be-). Actually Madison shows Homer some people who look like the founding father signing the Constitution as Madison tells Homer he'd be ruining all that they stood for (Yet Homer is never told what he'd be doing wrong so when he wakes up, there would be no lesson learned). Oh and by the way, when it comes to presidential dreams, this one SUCKS. it's boring and too long, the one in Lisa the Iconoclast was relatively short and cool. I hate the "Compare and contrast" but when this show has done a concept correctly in the past and fucks it up now, it pisses me off. Homer is awoken by Marge and he goes to Lisa to tell her that he will not endorse Nugent until he finds a conveniently placed pamphlet indicating that it was not a dream but a setup (I thought Lisa was the smart one, oh right, John Frink is the dumb one, my mistake).
Wait a minute, THIS is the script?! Then what have I been reading from?
Homer decides to endorse Ted Nugent just because he's mad about Lisa and the family tricking him (Just 2 more minutes, just 2 more minutes). On Homer's show, he is about to endorse Ted Nugent as his choice for the next president (Yeah because one nutjob on cable can decide the entire outcome of a presidential election. How is it possible that Man of the Year made more sense than this? And now that I think about it, that movie was funnier, I actually laughed in that movie). Homer decides to finish his endorsement by crying (Because it worked so well the first thousand times) but he is unable to cry (Thank God that super glue worked). Lisa tells Homer that he isn't crying because deep down he does not support Ted Nugent. Homer decides that Lisa is right and tells America he is full of crap, to which Lisa agrees (I'd say the writing staff is full of something all well). The episode ends with Ted Nugent singing a song as plot holes are left open about the gravy boat party, how people feel about Homer now, Bart's internet video, Nash and Nad's show, the wedding the family was supposed to go to, the state of the airline company, and you get the point.

Final Verdict: Dear God this episode sucked. Making fun of the Tea Party 2 years after the fact is expected since this show is very lazy and uninspired so I can't really be angry at them for that. But between the characterization of Homer as God of the political world after a viral video having NOTHING to do with politics, the atrocious pacing I mentioned earlier and the awful jokes (I think I counted at least 5 instances of the "Ironic" moment in this episode alone) just made this one a clunker to me. A real shame considering I really did like that Christmas episode.

Final Grade: 1.4/10 Good candidate for worst of the season


  1. I had a feeling that they'd screw up by the next episode, it's a rare talent to produce something like this.

  2. Come on the joke about replacing football With Soccer was funny

  3. bro Stop compareing how shit happen in the world of Simpsons with how shit occur in the real world

  4. What does "Gary Stu" mean?

  5. @RevueFox It was only a matter of time

    @Jounouchi Because humor is totally objective and not subjective. And also, which instance do you mean with "Compareing" the impossible phone cord? Homer's rise to power based off nothing? The 150 million hit YT video?

    @Anonymous Gary Stu is the male equivalent of Mary Sue

  6. How about just enjoy the show and stop over analysing everything about it...What a waste of time and of a website.

    1. Cool Story Bro. Next I'll just shut off my brain and accept that Michael Bay is an EXCELLENT director.

  7. You're an idiot. You think it's crap because you don't understand any of the political satire--satire in general. EX: Homer isn't crying just to cry, Have you ever seen Glenn Beck's show on FOX that got cancelled? Educate yourself before you nitpick details of luggage. There's more important things to notice and maybe you picked up such minor details that are irrelevant to the overall message cause you're too stupid to understand any of the content.

  8. The Number 471 of the 471st Onscreen Is Laughing With Homer and Bart. Bart Laughs, “Lisa Says What We're All Thinking.” Homer Laughs, “She Says What We’re All Thinking.” Lisa Enters the TV Room and Asks, “Bart, Dad, You’re Not Thinking That.” Homer and Bart Were Both Say, “Sorry, Lisa.”

  9. The Number 272 of the 272nd Onscreen Is Laughing With Marge, Bart and Lisa. Bart Laughs, “Lisa, You Say What We're All Thinking.” Lisa Laughs, “I Say What We’re All Thinking.” Marge Laughs, “Lisa, You Say What We’re All Thinking.” Grandpa Abe Enters the TV Room and Asks, “Marge, Bart, Lisa, You’re Not Thinking That.” Marge, Bart and Lisa Were Say, “Sorry, Grandpa.”

  10. The Number 171 of the 171st Onscreen Is Laughing With Homer. Homer Laughs, “Lisa Says What We're All Thinking.” Lisa Enters the TV Room and Asks, “Dad, You’re Not Thinking That.” Homer Says, “Sorry, Honey.”

  11. The Number 42 of the 42nd Onscreen Is Laughing With Lisa. Lisa Laughs, "Mom and I Say What We're All Thinking.” Marge Enters the TV Room and Asks "Lisa, You And I Are Not Thinking That.” Lisa Says, “Sorry, Mom.”

  12. The Number 242 of the 242nd Onscreen Is Laughing With Homer and Bart. Bart Laughs, “Dad Says What We're All Thinking.” Homer Laughs, “I Say What We’re All Thinking.” Lisa Enters the TV Room and Asks, “Bart, Dad, You’re Not Thinking That.” Homer and Bart Were Both Say, “Sorry, Lisa.”

  13. The Number 271 of the 271st Onscreen Is Laughing With Homer, Marge and Bart. Marge Laughs, "Homer Says What We're All Thinking.” Bart Laughs, “He Says What We're All Thinking.” Homer Laughs, “I Say What We’re All Thinking.” Grandpa Abe Enters the TV Room and Asks, “Homer, Marge, Bart, You’re Not Thinking That.” Marge and Bart Were Both Say, “Sorry, Grandpa.” Homer Says, "Sorry, Dad."