Sunday, April 11, 2010

Recap: "American History X-cellent"

Expect a recap soon. Haven't seen the episode yet, but I hope it is nothing like the movie (American History X) that I refuse to promo image yet, but maybe I'll use a regular one.

Luckily this episode did not contain the graphic scene I feared from American History X.  This episode begins with a visit to the Springfield Penitentiary. We follow as a group of security guards as they pass various jail cells containing some very crazy people, including some guy who lit his blanket on fire and still covered up with it.  Finally, the guards open the cell of a particularly skinny inmate who turns out to be Mr. Burns. The episode, which is narrated Mr. Burns, proceeds to tell the story of how he ended up in the Spring Penitentiary. 

So rewind to the time where Burns is working at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. He tells the employees that he will be hosting a 4th of July Picnic, but only for himself (D'oh). It is the employees job to setup picnic and serve Burns. One of the workers has the unlucky task of dressing up the hounds in Uncle Sam beards and top hats.  Burns makes other crazy demands, including having the workers put on a play and he even asks a worker to break a leg. When asked again the employee actually uses a hammer to break his own leg.  Burns then shouts "It's a figure of speech! You're fired!"  Burns's selfishness really angers Homer, Lenny and Carl.  They decide to retaliate by taking Burns's wine. Homer drinks from a huge $60,000 bottle of wine which he claims is worth what he makes in a year.  After drinking copious amounts of wine Homer and friends proceed to trash Burn's Mansion.  They even play twister on his art masterpieces.  When the police arrive to help Mr. Burns, they discover that these are stolen portraits and they arrest Burns instead.  So, Lou cuffs Mr. Burns around the waist (yes he is that skinny). 

As Mr. Burns is carted away to jail in a 1870s style wooden cart, the townsfolk of Springfield watch and carry signs saying things like "Burn in Hell."  Meanwhile, Moe sells rotten fruit (fresh fruit is at a discount).  Marge meets Homer on his way of out of the house with a rotten pumpkin. Marge asks Homer what the pumpkin is for, Homer replies that it is his lunch, Marge says eat it then, Homer asks what?, Marge says you say it's your lunch, so eat it, Homer says ok I will, Marge says I don't see any eating,  Homer says I will, Marge says go head then...It goes on like this for some time.  Finally, Homer stops taking pretend bites and actually bites the rotten pumpkin and surprisingly he enjoys it. 

Marge then leaves to go shopping because the malls are usually empty during town riots. She leaves Bart and instructs him to play with Lisa.  Bart doesn't want to play with Lisa, but Lisa reminds them that they should keep communication open because they might need organ transplants from one another in the future.  Lisa asks him to play with her ant farm, but Bart doesn't want to because the ants don't grow or plant things. 

Meanwhile, Burns has Smithers run the plant in his absence. Smithers intends to be a employeed friendly boss by doing things like making a suggestion bos that is not a guillotine for the hand (a person with claw hands claps profusely).  In order to show appreciation to Snimithers for his niceness Homer gives Smithers a view of his chest.  They then ask Smithers to leave early and he allows them to. When Smithers steps away form them they proceed to call him a marshmallow and make fun of how stupid he is. After this Smithers understands why Mr. Buns is so cold to his workers.

At the jail, Burns  is not haing much fun.  They took everything from him.  He tries to "befriend" the warden, but befriending is just another word for blackmailing to Mr. Burns. His blackmailing fails because he isn't sure what H drug the warden is using (it's actually Helium).  So, the warden has Burns treated horribly.  They use a hose to wash him and the flash of his mugshot pushes him to ground.  He is paired with another white collar criminal who digusts Burns because he went to Dartnouth.

At the Simpsons home, Lisa find somthing odd in her ant farm.  Se learns that Bart put some pop tart pieces in it. This makes Lisa angry and shet tells him that she is glad she is not his mother.  Bart replies that "If I was in your tummy I'd poo in our throat." Lisa gets mad because she doesn't want that image in her head and she fights with Bart over her ant farm. During the fight the farm breaks and before they can collect the ants Santa's Little Helper eats them all. He does however burp up on that Lisa names know because she is an orphan. Bart is sad because he didn't intend to kill the ants and he and Lisa bond over their love for her.  They both watch over Annie, but they decide to set her free because she only has a fews day left to live.  They release her in the yard together and thank her for bringing them together. Unfortunately, Santa's Little Helper is there to gobble her up as soon as she touches the ground.

Meanwhile at the plant Smithers has started treating the workers like dogs. This causes Homer and his friends to miss Mr. Burns.  They decide that they are going break him out of prison.  Mr. Burns has taken a turn at the jail. A black man who looks a lot like the Green Mile guy provides Burns with guidance and sucks all the evil out of him and turns him to Jesus. Burn feels the love in his vein.  He joins the choir and the Beatles band (at some point during this collection of scenes we see Snake washing and drying Sideshow Bob). Soon Homer, Lenny and Carl show up in the jail dressed as prison guards (the ones we see at the beginning of the episode) and attempt to lead him out of the prison.  The large black prisoner who has been Burn's spiritual guide tries to stop them and we find out the reason he took an interest in Burns in the first place is because he has killed many old, rich men just like him in the past.  Burns decides to leave because he still had a bit of evil in that managed to multiply and overtake his soul once more.  Burns is then back in charge of the plant and the black prisoner decides to help out Fat Tony.

Overall, this was a really good episode. It was very funny and the story was original and fun.  I thought Duncan (the guy from the Green Mile) did the voice acting, but it was actually a guy named Kevin Michael Richardson who has huge career in voice acting according to IMBD. Some notable roles for me are him playing Bishop in Wolverine and the X-Men (more new episodes please) and the Joker in The Batman.  No original Marvel cartoons, but still good stuff. But yeah I'm mad they didn't give his prisoner a name, but he was still pretty effective and funny.

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