Monday, February 13, 2012

Episode 13: The Daughter Also Rises

Ugh... Lisa falls in love with a guy voiced by Michael Cera, a guy who hasn't been really relevant since 2010. Bart and Homer decide to "Parody" Mythbusters, because that hasn't been done a thousand times on Youtube already by talentless hacks. But hey, maybe, just maybe, in the hands of a competent writer, this episode might not be total crap, I mean, the last episode was so stupid that they couldn't possibly put a talentless writer on this and *Reads credits*... Lazebnik... Rob FUCKING Lazebnik... Rob "I can't possible write anything good to save my family" Lazebnik...actually in all irony, Rob Lazebnik's last writing credit was last year's Valentine's Day episode The Blue and the Gray. Eh could be worse, could be Brian Kelley injecting his misogynistic undertones into a Valentine's Day episode. Enough with the positives,onto the review itself.

The episode begins with Bart and Milhouse next to their Valentine's Day cards as they decide to watch a random Itachy and Scratchy cartoon (It's short, but even for I and S violence, this is random). They are interrupted when Kirk pokes his head through the window to remind Milhouse not to watch Itchy and the writers have officially given up on logic at the 2 minute mark, we're screwed. I mean Kirk just RANDOMLY appears outside of the Simpsons resident just for the sake of a piss-poor joke, is it really THAT hard to justify why a character would be at a certain place? I guess so because that would require effort on the part of the writing staff. As a result of Kirk's lone appearance (Never shows up for the remainder of the episode, I'm not lying) Bart changes the channel and on comes "Mythcrackers"... eh, give them credit, at least their parody wasn't called "Mythboosters".The again, that's the ONLY positive thing about this subplot, it's all downhill from here.
Next time on Mythbusters, our guys- Dammit Pete, you misspelled "Busters" again
As a result, Marge tells Bart and Milhouse not to watch TV, which leads to a series of scenes I call "We know other forms of viewing television" as it results in Bart and Milhouse watching the show at a monitor at a gas station... maybe it's because I'm an East Coast guy, but I have never seen a gas station with television monitors in the pumps. Nice to know that the writers can connect so well with the average Joes of America *Cough*Detached from reality*Cough*. Anyways, Mythbusters (I don't know how I mixed up those two shows...oops) decide to try one thing, but end up doing something completely different for the sake of EXPLOSIONS!!! Is this a parody of Mythbusters or Michael Bay films? I'm sorry but randomness does not equal comedy, especially given how the satire of this show used to be subtle. In other words, they would not announce what they were "Making fun of" while doing it, sorry, let's move on. So Bart and Milhouse decide to replicate what they did and they cause a cellphone to explode at the gas station, to which we get a "CONFIRMED" title placed over the scene (Wow, I'm so impressed by a title someone could make in Windows Movie Maker on top of an episode... yeah I really don't care for this running gag, it's just not funny). Back home, we see Homer getting ready for Valentines Day as Marge informs Homer that he can do whatever he wants for the day as her gift to him. Homer is a bit paranoid of this, but Marge insists that Homer take Bart somewhere and have fun.
My wife is cheating on me at this very moment, heh-heh-h- wait a second
Oh and in case you figure that this will lead into some clever "Homer suspects Marge is cheating on him on Valentine's Day" plot, you'd be wrong, this goes absolutely NOWHERE. I can literally sum up what happens in one sentence: Homer takes Bart to the batting cages and "hilarity" ensues.This is utterly pointless, there is no reason for Homer's quick paranoia or his scene, if they wanted to justify why Marge and Lisa would be alone on Valentine's Day, I've got a reason: Marge gives Homer tickets to a basketball game with Bart, Homer gives Marge tickets to a ballet, they agree to have a romantic evening when they get home. There, problem solved, why are these guys getting paid? So after a montage of Jerkass Homer and Bart enjoying themselves (Okay there is one decent joke with the tickets and the prize exchange, despite the fact that they have done it before) we see Marge and Lisa at a restaurant as Marge tries to start up a conversation with Lisa but decides that a bad salad bar joke is in order (Oh and Professor Frink shows up for one scene which is completely pointless... that makes it what? Two characters appearing randomly and then disappearing so far?)
Love at first sight Norman Bates style, how romantic
 Back at the table, Lisa looks through a crack and notices a boy reading A Farewell to Arms and gets spotted by said boy (Although given how he acts throughout the episode, calling him a "Boy" is VERY generous, I'm just going to call him a 30 year old midget from now on, and you'll see why). So the midget named Nick invites Lisa to the dessert bar where the writers pretend this scene is romantic when in reality it's about as sterile as the Star Wars Prequels (Maybe I'm exaggerating here, I mean I think I may have seen some emotion from Attack of the Clones). Lisa tells her name to Nick which is supposed to be a romantic scene, which you can understand why they feel the need to cut to Moe at Nick's table sticking his arm through the hole to offer Marge some pasta (Is the idea of letting a scene sink in considered unholy to this writing staff?). At school, we see Bart and Milhouse begin their mythbusting careers as they find out that a vending machine is ordinary (Oh and they decide to put in a cigarette joke that lacks subtlety and tries to hammer itself in because we couldn't possibly get the joke on the first 3 parts). Speaking of running a joke into the ground, we cut to Lisa and Nick as Lisa shows that if she cuts off her peripheral vision, it seems like Paris, we see this played out four times (Because we're too stupid to get it by the second time...seriously, are the test audiences mentally deficient or something?).
Come play with us Marge... come play with us
After a scene trying to make juice boxes seem high class (Please kill me, please kill me, please-) we cut to a quilt making shop as we see Marge with Sherri and Terri's family as Sherri and Terri start moving a la ball under cups I on drugs? Lisa then comes in and we begin to plant the seeds of false tension between Marge and Lisa (Ugh... it's Lisa Simpson, This Isn't Your Life all over again, NO! I'm not dealing with that shit today, let's move on!). Although there is ONE thing I want to point out, a third twin appears in the motion and they say "Or maybe you're losing your mind", yes Sherri, Terri and Berri, I am losing my mind at this point. Back at school, myth two involves swinging over the swingset and it proves to be false (*Yawn* how riveting, I could watch this for hou- ZZZZ). After a montage of Lisa and Nick (Along with some terrible jokes) we cut back home as Lisa decides to tell Marge about her crush on Nick (But not without Homer acting like and assclown...there are only so many words to describe my hated for "Jerkass Homer" and only a few that would get past the censors) and Marge allows Nick to come over for dinner (As long as Juliet is banned from this house, Nick can come over).
Marge: Why Nick, are you trying to seduce me?
Nick: Actually it's your daughter I'm interested in
The next night we see why I called Nick a 30 year old midget; Nick comes over with a bottle of wine while flirting with Marge and Maggie... eewwwwwww, now I will NEVER get that image out of my head, FUCK YOU LAZEBNIK! Actually I'm honestly trying to understand why he brought wine, Lisa is 8, Nick is... God only knows, but apparently he still lives with his mother, at no point does Nick actually act like a kid. Say what you want about Stewie from Family Guy or the kids from South Park, in the end, they still make child-like mistakes, they still have child-like innocence and ignorance. Nick never displays this, he always acts like he's in his late teens or early twenties from a sophisticated family (Which we never see by the way). As a result, Nick does not come across as charming, but rather as creepy. Anyways, Nick wants to take Lisa to some fair at the gym (Which given his character so far, seems like he's asking her out to the prom) and Marge begins to resent Lisa and Nick's relationship as it's taking Lisa away from her (And now we've got Dude, Where's my Ranch? included in this clusterfuck of a plot). So later, Lisa approaches Grampa at the Retirement Home (For some reason) and tells him about how she fells towards Marge's resentment. This inspires Grampa to tell Lisa about the story of Pyramus and Thisbe (For some other reason...) Anyways, Lisa points out the obvious comparisons... You cannot be serious writers!
The fine folks at Dizney would be insulted
Grampa ends the story by saying that their kiss turned them into a tree as it turns out, his story was Disney's version, complete with a talking parrot... excuse me a moment *Goes to scream expletives into a pillow* That joke was completely awful, forget about how they explained the joke, let's instead talk about how the show could actually make fun of Disney without seeming like complete assclowns in the process. I'm sorry, but this joke coupled with a double dose of Jerkass Homer in the story just makes that scene unbearable for me. Anyways, Lisa asks Grampa to help her on a romantic mission and he agrees (Wait a second, what was the plot again? Lisa meets Nick, Lisa falls in love with Nick, Marge gets jealous, Lisa wants to kiss Nick under a tree as a very romantic I missing something? Seems very lacking to me). Back at school, we see Bart and Milhouse to a school version of Bloody Mary in the girls bathroom as they get scared when Lunch Lady Doris comes in to wash her hands (Phil Hartman characters get respect when he dies, Doris Grau on the other hand... Fuck her, it's not like the writing staff should give two shits about her. Next they'll teabag her tombstone). So everyone is disappointed that all the myths were busted and Bart and Milhouse decide to team up with Willie to make a new myth up to scare everyone and thus that subplot ends.
What's the matter, you guys look like you've seen a ghost
So essentially we got "Bart and Milhouse are the hosts of Mythbusters"... does anyone else feel like this was just a promotion for Mythbusters rather than a parody of it? Like with The D'oh-Cial Network, instead of parodying the source material, the writers instead watch something and come up with the brilliant scheme of "We can put our characters in that movie/show". That is one of the laziest forms of writing and I weep for our future. Anyways, Grampa apparently gets chased by the cops as he's driving Nick and Lisa to an beach to get to an island as Grampa gets taken back while the kids run off (What was the point of the police? Oh right, for that amazing "Spanish TV" joke... ugh). Anyways, Nick begins to seem like a wimp while he and Lisa row to the island while Marge and the family drive to try to prevent Lisa and Nick from kissing on the island (There's just no end to this, is there?) After an unfunny, padded out watershoes gag (Not the last time it'll be used, I can assure you) Lisa and Nick get under the tree as Nick acts even more nerdy and Lisa says "Shut up and kiss me"... Lisa, the FEMINIST, feels the need to place her love for a boy over herself as an equal...THIS WRITING SUCKS!!!
Can you two move out of the way? We're trying to film Twilight
But just as Lisa is about to become a Barbie doll of a character, she gets a vision of Hemingway's wives and a marlin advising her not to go through with this...I think I must be on drugs, no sober person could possibly find this entertaining. Lisa decides against the kiss as Marge finally gets there to stop them. Nick admits that he's a fraud and heads back in the boat (Then what the fuck is he? I have no clue who this 30 year old midget is, is he a postman? Is he homeless? Is he part of the upper class? ANSWER ME!). Lisa tells Marge that she couldn't do it because a person you kiss under a Mulberry tree is someone you'll love for the rest of your life, and Marge proceeds to give Lisa a kiss on her head (How sweet... if only this episode wasn't shit, I may have cared). Marge and Lisa try to walk back to the shoreline as Homer for no reason grabs a fan boat and randomly sinks (How cute, the writers think they can be funny). The episode ends with Homer getting up saying "If a fat man stays still, he floats" as he sinks with a "MYTH CRACKED" sign over the screen (And the episode comes full circle, too bad the circle turned out to be two parallel lines).

Final Verdict: This episode SUCKED. The stories were boring and stupid with the main one being a "Lisa/Bart finds Boy/Girlfriend" story with no originality, the jokes were just awful and the padding was annoying. Nick is uninteresting, unappealing and underdeveloped and his character change in the final act is just jarring. I don't blame  Mike Cera, this script was awful he had nothing to work with here. Now this isn't AS bad as last year's Valentine's Day episode, but that's not saying much.

Final Grade: 1.5/10 Only way to watch this is with some Valentine's Day cocktails. Next time is the 500th episode, where the Simpsons go to Antartica... stop laughing, it's the actual plot


  1. Did you notice that halfway through the episode, Micheal Cera's character's skin becomes darker, and then become lighter again? It seemed lazy to let his skin change color for so long.

    Also, at least give them credit for leaving the Mythbusters hosts IN THE TV. They could have perfectly made them come to Springfield to say, "Hey Bart, hey Milhouse, let's crack some myths!"

    And lastly, Kirk appears with Luann when the Marge-Lisa-Micheal plot starts. Granted, he isn't relevant to the plot, but I just wanted to point out he appears later in the episode.

  2. Didn't notice Nick's color change, but I don't doubt you for a second.

    Eh, gotta give you credit there. They didn't go the "Celebrity appears in Springfield for no particular reason". Although I really wish that they would have gotten more lines or just been replaced with a voice impersonator. Seems like a waste of a guest voice

    Oh right he did. My justification: he was a background character and had no lines. I admit I may have worded that awkwardly, but I stand by the point that his appearance is just random in that scene.