Wookiee taking a break from schoolwork again to keep up with episode recaps. I know I haven’t been around a ton but at a minimum, my goal is to keep these current. One of the features we like to have on this site is recaps of new Simpsons episodes for all our friends who can’t watch them immediately or like our silly reviews of them. I love when there are new episodes of the Best. Show. Ever. on TV and it’s my privilege to not only watch new episodes, which I would do with or without this awesome site, but then break them down for all of you. It’s also nice to have a break from essays, reading, and brain-sucking tedium from time to time. I stuck to the stream of consciousness format for this. Basically I watch the episode once for my enjoyment and then a couple more times slowly to catch as much as I can while jotting down notes. Without further ado… here’s my thoughts on Season 28, Episode 3 “The Town”.
To start this off for accidental clickers who just prefer the synopsis, here’s what an anonymous user on idmb wrote for the episode:
“Homer takes the family on a “hate-cation” to Boston after he catches Bart rooting for a rival football team.”
Now on with the random recap observations of yours truly… fair warning, this is SPOILER heavy.
So this is one of those episodes with no intro that goes straight into the action of the episode. Usually bodes well for quality. It’s dinner time at the Simpsons and Marge made pot pies. Marge really is one heck of a homemaker. Homer burns his tongue on the pie because he’s in a hurry to go watch football at Moe’s. Seriously… his rendition of reading The Wizard of Oz to the kiddos is “everything after the tornado was a dream. The end.” The barflies are rooting for the Springfield Atoms versus the Boston Americans. The boys “can’t stand those no good Boston cheaters” and Moe despises the “pretty-boy quarterback. He thinks he’s so handsome just cuz he’s drop dead gorgeous.”
Lenny outlines all the cheating of the Boston team like listening to the plays of the opponent, fattening opposing cheerleaders and using a volleyball painted brown. Of course there’s Boston fans in the bar in town for a Bostonian book tour. I just love them being called “rule-breaking cranberry squeezers.” Seriously, the jokes at the expense of Boston football fans and their witty responses to the Springfield guys are great. It all comes to a head when the American’s mascot Flappy the Flag receives a winning touchdown pass even if Coach Bonderchuck doesn’t smile in his hoodie.
Homer is ticked at home about Boston’s stupid smug winning cheaters. Homer is aghast when he goes in the kitchen to find Bart wearing a Boston Americans hat.
Bring on the conflict between father and son. Homer goes all bull trying to get the hat and hilariously is olayed out the door to rampage the Flanderseses. Later, Homer picks Bart up at school to try and point out the beauty of being a Homer (hometown fan and great name) of a team rightfully stolen from Portland. Apu and Sideshow Mel see Bart wearing his cheater cap and hat shame him. Bart just likes Boston because it’s “the Bart Simpson of cities” as proven by movies with Southies like The Departed. They’re his people. I love Homer pointing out that “the dog and the baby are your people.” Bart says it “all goes back to the Boston Tea Party, a prank so kick-ass it started a country.” Bart won’t fall to Homer’s line of reasoning and lose the hat. He leaves and puts a Boston Americans sticker on the car. Must be bad if Homer can’t get the bumper sticker off and decides to just give away the beloved purple car.
Homer’s still upset at home in bed with Marge. It can’t even be relieved with some snuggling with Marge. All Homer sees are Boston stuff like Bs, baked beans, and the pretty boy quarterback. The only thing to do is take the family on a hate-cation to prove to Bart that Boston stinks. “Bart, you’re my son. There’s no neck tattoo so crass, no gender reassignment too ambiguous that I would not love you which is why I must show you the error of your ways even if it means dragging this family all the way to hell.” The Simpsons are going to Boston!
It all starts with awful Boston traffic. The Quincy Market with not exactly ugly but not good looking Bostonians. Homer tries to prove how awful people are by rocking his Atoms jacket and heckling the “clam gargling tea tossers” and dissing Fenway. Unfortunately he tips a stand of bobbleheads and is nearly bobbled to death by them including one of Bell Biv Devoe.
No worries though, there’s multiple helpful doctors in the crowd to save Homer from certain bobbly doom. There’s even no bill because of Boston’s socialized health care which includes a whole wing “for injuries from falling off icy roofs and gutters.” While Homer has heads pulled out of his skin, Marge and Lisa are off to sightsee. We also get a view of “Welcome to, Er, Ah, Quimby, Mass. City of Mayors,” the town where Mayor Quimby hails from. The closed captioning describes this as “all muttering with thick accents.” I wonder how a deaf person would imagine that.
Marge and Lisa are enjoying the fit people, free sunscreen, and progressive but not stupid progressive parents. Lisa loves finding a college campus with “every recognized species of nerd. A jester-hatted ferret preener! A Wild West-afarian! A Magic: The Gathering gathering! Oculus rifters! Yo-yo guys. Yo-yo girls! A chain mail ping pong player.” Lisa is giggling and squealing for joy. There’s so much education it’d make for a snoozer of a Real Housewives episode. “It’s like heaven for people who don’t believe in heaven.”
Meanwhile, Homer and Bart are at Bulger’s Bowl-O-rama to try candlepin bowling. Homer is initially disdainful at how Boston messed up his favorite “sport” but quickly becomes a fan as it doesn’t hurt to bowl the tiny balls AND he gets a third ball. “This regional bowling with its one extra roll has knocked my misguided hate into the gutter.” Homer now likes Boston. Homer and Bart are real father-son Southies “like Ben and Casey Affleck.” Laughing my butt off at that joke. Bart shows Homer everything the town has to offer which is basically a ton more candlepin bowling. Alley names include Yankees Suck, Paddy O’Murphigan’s Irish Pub, Taxachusetts, Just Huck It Already, The Lanes of Eddie Coyle, and Lakers Suck!. Shock of shocks, while in their room at Jordan’s Furniture & Motel (Free NESN No ESPN), Homer and Marge decide to move to Beantown, a place that “values education with great healthcare and everyone’s outdoorsy but still pallid.” Homer describes it as “the chance to knock down all of life’s pins… fate is offering us a third ball.”
We get the Saint Elsewhere Theme played with lots of views of Boston I assume are great for people more familiar with the town then me. My Boston knowledge includes history knowledge and the same movies as Bart. I dig the Bill “Spaceman” Lee Planetarium. Colonial quilts on the wall (for napping standing up) and Santa’s Little Helper in bubble wrap. The Simpsons really did it. They moved and this time it wasn’t because they were kicked out of Springfield. Bart wants to live his life like a movie about Boston and get an “’X’ necklace to kiss.” Homer is even drinking Boston beer and got a safety inspector gig at the New England Kandy Company (NEKCO). The joke here is they couldn’t use the real NECCO I suppose. Homer’s new job location looks a ton like his old nuclear plant but makes candy instead from inanimate carbon rods. His work station and work ethic is even is identical.
Bart and Lisa head to their charter school. Lisa loves it but Bart is bummed that his prank winds him in detention where all they do is acapella with their extra energy. “Not a Wahlberg in the bunch.” Here’s Lisa’s happy synopsis of Boston after a great day in school. “People think Boston’s all Southies and hooligans but it’s really teachers, Ph. D. students, doctors, innovators, philanthropists. It’s like living in a giant classroom and every day is a new test.” No surprise that Bart hates it. Bring on Bart’s nightmare of being chased by theater, colleges, and culture. Note that the nightmare buildings are realistic. Even the statue of Paul Revere turns into Lisa. Bart tries to bring up Springfield during their clam bake dinner but he’s alone in not digging Boston. I love the buildings of Bart’s balcony view flipping him off and him saying “same to you.” Lisa knows what it’s like to not fit in but now it’s Bart’s turn. Bart lights out to skateboard but the cobblestone street just send him flying. He’s now in South Boston but even that turns out to be a disappointment as it’s just the Wahlberg brothers loading tablets for Rwanda. Bart is determined to end this experiment.
The next day he coordinates a family activity to attend a parade for the Boston Americans. There’s a dimwitted Bonkowski (suck it Gronk!) and a float for Coach Bonderchuck.
Bart even points out the coach being let off for magnetizing the coin toss. Bart hands out Boston ball caps and asks Bonk to pose for a picture with the family.
Homer can support his new hometown’s team but doesn’t want to wear one of their hats. I love Homer’s struggle with the hat and Steven Tyler being in the crowd. Homer just can’t support cheaters and its back to Springfield for the Simpsons. Marge is miffed at Homer especially that she didn’t get to experience a Boston winter. Homer points out they never were going to escape their problems by moving somewhere else. “Our problems are who we are not where we are.” At least they don’t have to deal with the traffic and the not so “unspoken racism.” It all ends well with Bart wearing a Springfield Atoms hat and Lisa living in a dream world where she never left Boston. The end.
The credits highlight a bunch of images from the episode and the acapella Shipping Out to Boston song. I have to say I enjoyed this episode. Solid B plus/A minus wowza stuff here. I’m so stoked that I’ve digged three episodes in a row and tomorrow is Treehouse of Horrors XXVII, the 600th fracking episode of the Best. Show. Ever.!!!!!! I’m guessing Episode 3 might be a favorite of Bostonians. Any Addicts here to confirm or deny this? Anyone who hates the Patriots probably also would dig this one. The way it bookended by lampooning them made this fuzzball smile. What did you think of the episode? How would you grade it? Anything I didn’t mention you feel like highlighting? Sound off in the comments, I hope your Halloween event is going great, and thank for stopping by as the classy folks you always are. Now back to studying for a big boy job.
TTFN… Wookiee out!