Sunday, May 16, 2010

Recap: "The Bob Next Door"

Recap coming soon. The Survivor finale is my excuse this week. Oh yeah and my laptop will be unavailable for a few days :-)

In this episode of the Simpsons they took the concept of craziness to another level, but that made it even more enjoyable. However, I am getting ahead of myself. This episode e started with the City of Springfield going through a budget crisis. At a town hall meeting they decide to make cutbacks. These cutbacks mean no more dead animal cleanups (cut to a scene where Krusty is shipping these dead animals for use at Krusty Burger). They also decided to release all low level criminals who do things like steal grapes and take multiple newspapers out of those weird newspaper boxes. Many people decide to sell their homes and move to Detroit for better lives (and that’s saying something).

As a result of all this movement the Simpsons get a new neighbor. Lisa and Marge are already fond of him after seeing his furniture and his hybrid car. Bart decides to introduce himself to new neighbor, but is freaked out when the stranger says “hello Bart” in a voice extremely similar to that of Sideshow Bob’s. But Walt, that’s the neighbor’s name, argues that he sounds like a lot people including Frasier

Everyone in town is smitten with Walt because he is really nice, but Bart remains suspicious. He tries to prove Walt is really Sideshow Bob by tempting him with Gilbert and Sullivan songs. They sing Three Little Maids from the Mikado (I think that’s the name of the musical), but Walt is shows no desire to join them. When Walt is out Bart searches his house and this forces Marge to take Bart to jail to check if Sideshow Bob is still there. When Marge arrives with Bart in the prison the prisoners start to catcall her, but in true fashion once she announces that she is married they leave her alone and apologize. When they arrive at Bart’s cell they see Sideshow Bob with pen in his mouth writing things on Bart dying. This comforts Bart, so he leaves with Marge. But Bob manages to escape when the guards attempt to help him as he chokes on the marker in his mouth.

Back at home Walt offers to take Bart to a baseball games and Bart happily accepts. While on their way to the game Sideshow Bob shows up at the Simpsons’ home and he is immediately attacked by Homer and Marge. But he manages to tell them that he is the real Walt Warren and it is believable because his voice is nothing like Sideshow Bob’s. They then wonder who is with Bart. We then cut back to the scene where “Walt” is driving Bart to the baseball game, but they drive right past the stadium. When Bart asks about them passing the theater “Walt” uncurls his feet from the tiny shoes and reveals that he is the really Sideshow Bob. He also uses this as an opportunity to sing all the Gilbert and Sullivan he wants.

Bob then explains how he performed a face transplant while in prison in order to take on Walt Warren’s appearance. And because Walt was a mild offender he was released a low level criminal. Back at home with Marge, Homer and Walt they search Bob’s home and find a room where he has dozens of pictures of Bart with knives through them (“Man that guy does not like Bart”). So, Homer and Marge take the car and go after Bart and Bob. Bart and Bob stop at rest stop and a diner waitress pulls a loose thread she finds on Bob’s neck and it loosens his face and it falls off and he rushes away with Bart. Walt, Homer and Marge stop at the same space and she pulls a loose thread on Walt’s collar and his Sideshow Bob face begins to fall off and the lady becomes convinced that she won’t find a man with a face that won’t fall off. She also convinces Homer and Marge that Bart has been taken to Mexico, but Warren heads in another direction because he isn’t convince

So, Bob takes Bart to the 5 corners in order to shoot him from on state, get hit in another state and then die in a third state which would make prosecution impossible. And he declares that it would be the “Best murder since Snape killed Dumbledore!” I was super excited to hear this Harry Potter reference, but Bart was disappointed because he hadn’t read the Half Blood Prince yet. Bob argues, and rightfully so, that it’s a 4 year old book. So, Bob tries to kill Bart, but Bart hops into the same state as Bob every time he moves. Eventually Walt arrives, steals Bob’s gun and tries to save Bart, but a Bee underneath his face distracts him and Bob gets his gun back. Meanwhile Homer and Marge are trying to translate Taco to a street vendor in Mexico. Luckily, Wiggum and police from many states show up to help them out. They found them because all hybrids have tracking devices because of the government. After Bob is put back in jail Ned’s cousin Ted Flanders moves in next door which equals pure torture to Homer- “Stop! Stop!”

Overall it was an awesome episode. I thought they would have been out of good Sideshow Bob ideas, but this was good. I was happy they decided to leave out his Italian family; they weren’t really fun for me. I especially like the whole loose thread bit. Great penultimate episode to this season of the Simpsons.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Eclipse Stars on Oprah

I know I should be writing my Simpsons Recaps right now , but I just wanted to put up some pop culture news while it's sort of fresh. So the principle cast of the Twilight series was Oprah this past week. Only Oprah has the power to do this while the trio are at the height of their fame. So she spoke Robert about his crazy fame, Kristen about her shyness, and Taylor about his muscles...or at least that's how I remember it. 

Some notable things were Rob's sense of humor he used to be as shy and nervous as Kristen, but I now feel he is a lot more comfortable and is able to be really funny. It also helps that he is goodlooking and has a natural charm about him. Taylor seemed rehearsed, but was well spoken as usual. Kristen explained her general shyness/nervousness and Oprah hugged her for it, but it didn't help with her stuttering (but I get is OPRAH!)

Overall though it was an awesome special. I forgot to mention Dakota Fanning, but she was forgettable. If you haven't seen it yet there's probably a video on

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Recap: "Moe Letter Blues"

Watching the 7:30 Simpsons because I know I'll miss the 8pm episode. Once again, I can't watch them because tonight is the Amazing Race season finale (let's go Cowboys!). I think I'll be able to catch next weeks episode though. Until next time :)

Well a quick update, the Cowboys did not win the Amazing Race. Disappointing, but it's been a while so I'm already over it. But onto the Simpsons.

This touching episode began with Moe leading the narration. He mentions something about zip code spelling boobs (80085), but we move to the Moe’s bar where all the fun is going on. As Homer rides Barney like a bull, the camera pans to Moe tells the camera to get off of him because he narrating. He then talks about how as a bartender he knows about all the problems his patrons deal with, specifically Homer, Apu and Reverend Lovejoy.

We then join the Simpsons watching Krusty a few days before Mother’s Day. During a commercial break they learn about a place called Weasel Island that is perfect for Mother’s Day. They encourage families to go to the Island and leave the mom’s at home, so they have free time to do whatever they want (sounds realistic right?). Homer, Apu and Reverend Lovejoy are all sold on the idea, so they take their families to Weasel Island. But while on the boat they receive a letter from Moe stating that while they’re gone he intends to leave town with one of their wives. Before going to commercial Moe laments that narrating is hard, but Don Pardo argues against him saying that he makes a lot is very happy doing it.

So, Homer, Apu and Reverend Lovejoy attempt to contact their wives, but they can’t get a signal with their cell phones. When they reach Weasel Island they each contemplate their marital problems in an attempt to figure out if their wife is likely to be stolen. Homer shares about the time when the in-laws visited. He remembers taking a picture of Patty and Selma and calls them “penis curling she devils.” This obviously made Marge really upset.

Meanwhile on the island Bart reenacts Civil War by putting the Apu’s octuplets in jail. Lisa notes that Bart knows his history of cruelty, but luckily the kids know how to fight back. They then go on rides. The ride operator tells Bart and Lisa “you had that scar before you got on,” Bart asks “what scar” and the operator responds “oh you’ll find out.” Eventually the ride stalls.

We then learn about Apu’s recent issues. He obviously cheated on Manjula, but he then he thinks about a time that Moe was able to witness his issues. This leads Apu into a recent issue he and Manjula encountered in their marriage. He tells Homer and Lovejoy about how his family got caught in the rain afar a cricket match and they were all extremely miserable. They stop by Moe’s in order to use the rest room, but once they leave and arrive home they discover that one of the kids was missing. Just in time they get a call from Moe letting them know that he has the kids. Although assures them that he is by no means threatening them, it would be welcome if they brought a million dollars in exchange for the kid. But he emphasizes that it is not a required ransom. Manjula decides to go back for their 8th child, but when she returned she smelled of beer and pickled eggs which now worries Apu. But Homer who happened to be there that night is able to assure Apu that all they did was play the Zii’s Dance Evolution game to Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance.” Another great song featured in the Simpsons.

Next, we get in Reverend Lovejoy’s marital problems. We learn that his wife Helen is mad because they don’t talk. His adviser tells him that Helen is mad and is about to blow. Moe shares his problems with Helen who is the town gossiper, so this in a way was Moe comforting her. Apu reveals that he saw Helen touching Moe’s knee. This new information makes everyone want to get back to town to see which wife was stolen. But before they go Lisa needs help get the carousel horse off of her.

When they arrive in town Homer finds Marge packing and he assumes the worst. Luckily it turns out that she is just painting. We then see Helen telling Rev. Lovejoy that she leaving, but it turns out that she is going to Istanbul with him, so they’re fine. This leaves Apu and he knows it and he is very sad. However, it turns out that Moe convinced Manjula to stay with Apu.

It turns out that Moe’s actions and letter were his attempt to help his friends fix their marriages and encourage them to appreciate their wives. The episode ends with a Mother’s Day tribute with pictures of mother’s accompanied by the “I’ll Always Love My Mama” song. So nice.

Overall, I really enjoyed the episode and it’s surprisingly direct message for Mother’s Day. I thought it would be an episode with some wacky attempts by Moe to steal their wives, but was surprised to find that Moe would do something good for their marriages. I think Moe is symbol for all of us to be more appreciative of what we have in life.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Recap: "To Surveil with Love" Coming Soon

Sorry that I'm running behind on Simpsons recaps, but last week was my birthday and shortly after that I got really sick and finally I lost my home internet connection (thank God for my smartphone...Droid!!!). As soon as it's back on I'll get the last recap up and I'll also get a chance to see this Sunday's episode (I reallyyy want to see that Ke$ha moment). Check back soon :)

Well, I saw the Ke$ha title moment and it was a pretty good. I'm surprised that they managed to animate that whole thing while the song was still relevant.  In the clip a lot was going on, but there were cool moments like Bart singing Diddy's lines and Otto getting a little bit tippppssy.

fsWell the episode itself started in Moe’s bar where Duffman and co come by to refill the beer. While there they gave out a ton of free swag including Duff USBs. When Homer gets home he shows off all his free stuff including his Duff earrings. Homer uses his duff bag to bring things to work and when Smithers tells Mr. Burns about excess nuclear waste, Burns tells him to put it in Homer’s bag. When Homer goes to the Union Station to try their mac and cheese, he leaves his bag unattended it causes a ruckus in the station. When the authorities, which include a look alike of Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry character, detonate it there is a massive nuclear explosion. It’s considered a terrorist attack, so the mayor hires a British anti-terrorism consultant. This consultant is qualified because he tackled the problem of overzealous flower sales people (very My Fair Lady) and also encouraged the use of surveillance in Britain.

Meanwhile at school Lisa is invited to join the debate team after showing her use of logic. It’s the perfect extracurricular it requires no funding, so it can’t be cut. But they still manage to take away Ralph and the throw up kid who were being used as podiums. During one of her first debates Lisa takes on a girl named Meghan. Initially, Lisa does well, but soon Meghan starts to degrade Lisa for being a blonde. This makes the judges take her less seriously and undervalue her arguments.

When they consider using surveillance to help secure Springfield during the town hall meeting Lisa argues that it is an infringement upon their rights. But Lisa point is dismissed because they think that she is just a dumb blonde. When the call for the vote, they ask those in favor say cheese. Most people in the auditorium say cheese. They then asks those who disagree to say I hate America. Lisa almost says it, but stops just in time to realize that she and any others who disagree were being tricked.

Marge buys Lisa a book entitled Sally the Circle when realizes that Lisa feels out of place due to her blonde hair. But the dismal ending doesn’t help Lisa feel better. Even Bart starts to feel low when Krusty decides to make blonde jokes about boys. Lisa decides to do the unthinkable and dyes her brown. Lisa competes in a debate with her new brown hair and she receives compliments like “she is as bright as her hair is dark.” Once she finds that they convinced by her hair she exposes her blonde roots and they are all scandalized. She uses this as an opportunity to denounce all stereotypes. She tells them that not all blondes are dumb, not all fat people are jolly (Comic Book Guy is mad that Comic Con may be moving to Anaheim), and that some old people can drive.

Meanwhile, the cameras are installed and the cops hire a group of Butt-in-skis (includes Ned and Marge) to surveil and reprimand the townsfolk through the use of a nagging speaker. Marge is not comfortable with the position because she feels like she is prying and she is uncomfortable with Maggie watching people in a gay bar who she thinks are a part of Sesame Street (they really did look like Bert and Ernie and Big Bird). Ned really annoys the townsfolk with all his prying and judging. While mooning Flanders Bart discovers a blind spot for the cameras behind his house. When he tells Homer they begin to charge people to access this space and do whatever they want in the blind spot. Cletus’ wife drinks some alcohol to stop the kicking of her unborn child and they even drag race for about 2 feet. They try to hide it from Marge, but she finds out tells Ned and the blind spot terrifies him. He tells Rodd to make sure that they both stay in the house, but he replies that Todd’s not in the house (he’s being fed mice in the blind spot).

When Ned sees the area for himself he describes it as compressed super evil. In the end, they reach an agreement and decide take down the cameras (they use crossbows like normal people). That ends the episode of American Oafs, which is the reality show that the consultant made out of the Springfield footage. The Queen is upset, but not more upset than her Ralph-like son Prince Charles who ends the episode with the classic line: “my cat’s breath smells like cat food.”