Growing up, The Simpsons was must-watch TV for me and my brother (my mom didn’t want us watching it, so of course it became a priority). Every weeknight, our local Fox affiliate (Fox 19, sup?) would play an episode after the 10 O’clock news. We would set our VCR to record, and re-watch these episodes on loop. Then, in the early 2000’s, it became a trend for TV series’ to be released on DVD. HOLY SHIT was that a game changer. I’d wear those DVD’s out, watching them every night as I fell asleep. And now with streaming content, it’s easier than ever to watch your favorite episodes of the show. I’ve been having a craving to go back and watch episodes of my favorite show from my childhood/teen/adult years, so that’s what I’ll be doing.
How it will work: The Simpsons World on the FX Now app has a random episode generator which I’ll be using to select the episodes for me (I’ll concentrate on seasons 1-20, because I haven’t been watching in recent years), and from there, I’ll give the plot of the episodes and highlight the pop culture references, significance of the episode, jokes that were in the episode and any memories that the show elicits. I encourage you to watch along with the episode I randomly choose, and tell me your thoughts as well. This is going to be fun.
Season 10, Episode 2: The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace
Original air date: September, 1998
Chalkboard gag: I will not file frivolous lawsuits
Homer has a sort of mid-life crisis and realizes that he hasn’t accomplished anything in his 39 years in Springfield. Feeling this way, he sets out to become an inventor, modeling his life after Thomas Edison. Trying his hardest and still striking out, he comes up with a few awful inventions. Here’s a clip of him showing off one of them.
In the end, after thinking that he had failed miserably, he’s sitting at the kitchen table groveling about his life. While at the table, he leans back in his chair, begins to fall backwards, and is caught by an extra set of legs that he had attached to his chair with hinges. The family is impressed by his ingenuity, and tells him that he’s an inventor after all. Feeling happy that he finally came up with something worthwhile, he looks at an Edison poster and sees that Edison had already invented a safety chair with hinges on it. The only option Homer has to get the credit he’s looking for is to drag Bart along to the Edison museum with him, and smash Edison’s chair. He gets to the Edison museum and can’t go through with it, learning a valuable lesson about not always trying to follow in others footprints. Happy-feel-good ending, of course.
Three Hilarious Quotes
As the family watches a highlight film of Homer’s life, a clip of him getting beat up by heavyweight champion Drederick Tatum comes on and Grandpa Simpson excitedly exclaims “Finish him! Finish him!” rooting on Tatum.
Another great moment:
As Homer peels off to head to the Edison museum to smash the only version left of the safety chair, he yells to Marge: “TAKING BART ACROSS STATE LINES, BACK SOON!” He gets a little further down the road and you hear him yell back “I TOOK YOUR WALLET!”
When Homer is inventing things in the basement, the chalkboard that he’s using has a mathematical equation on it. Apparently, if you work out that equation (I’ll trust the mathematicians), you get the mass of a Higgs boson that’s only a little larger than the mass of the actual Higgs boson. This episode aired 14 years before the actual mass was discovered. If you don’t know what the Higgs boson is, watch any episode of The Big Bang Theory. Pretty sure it will get mentioned, followed by a long laugh track after Sheldon does something awkward.
This is a quality episode, and definitely worth a watch. It’s a very Homer-heavy episode, which are some of my favorites. On the Duff Beer scale of 1 to a 6 pack, I give it a solid 5. Quality, coming close to classic.