Where Did THAT Come From – New Bedlam Rest Home & Leon Kompowsky

Safi here, giving Wookiee a hand with these WDTCF. With WDTCF being a staple of TSTO Addicts, I’ll try to keep as true to the format as possible (by which I mean I’ll copy and paste one of Wookiee’s posts and just change the necessary info). Hope I make the Wookster proud. Enjoy:

In our silly lil game, we sometimes see things pop in that we have no clue as to their Origin. They seem familiar, but we just can’t pinpoint from where. So that is why we decided to make a fun lil reminder out of it. To let you know just Where Did THAT Come From?

It’s “Insane in the membrane, Insane in the brain!” time here in all of our tiny tappable towns and this sane (my mother had me tested) Super Safi could not be more thrilled.

It’s time for one of my favorite parts of being a reader here at this amazing site. That’s right… new stuff for us to talk about just WHERE it all comes from in the Best. Show. Ever. I’m always a fan of new things even though a lot of the coolest things cost precious sprinklies. The 2017 Homerpalooza Event started with a bang (literally with a free cannon) and then went full Rock, and then Pop. And when you think of Pop, you have to think of the King of Pop, none other than the late great Michael Jackson. It’s my privilege to get to writing about the origins for The Simpsons version of MJ on behalf of Wookiee. It’s always a pleasure to re-watch episodes of the Best. Show. Ever. For this round of origins, we’ll be taking a look at Leon Kompowsky, aka Michael Jackson, and the New Bedlam Rest Home:


“Stark Raving Dad” (S03, E01)

Thanks to Bart leaving his lucky red hat in the load of washed white shirts, all the clothes turn pink much to Homer’s chagrin. Homer wears a pink shirt to the nuclear power plant and his co-workers all poke fun of him. Mr. Burns suspects him of being a “free-thinking anarchist”. Homer is sent home with a 20-question psychiatric quiz that he has to fill in so that Dr. Marvin Monroe can assess his sanity. Homer is too lazy to finish the quiz on his own and lets Bart fill it in. When Dr. Monroe sees the results, he determines that Homer is insane. Homer is promptly committed to a mental institution. [I should point out here that I have TWO pink dress shirts and THREE pink polos. I wear a pink shirt to work on nearly a weekly basis. But unlike Homer, who’s 99% male co-workers all poke fun of him; I am one of two men working amongst 16 women and am always told the pink shirt brings out my eyes.]

As you can probably guess, the mental hospital Homer is committed to is none other than New Bedlam Rest Home for the Emotionally Interesting. We get a quick one-second glimpse of the building I so amazingly capture in this screenshot below.

And that’s it for this building. It’s exterior facade had a 1-second appearance in the show’s 28-year history and is now in our games for 150 donuts.  🙂

But what makes the 150 donuts worth it is the character we get with it.

Homer is sent to a mental institution and is put in a cell with a large white man who seems to believe he is the King of Pop, Michael Jackson (referred to as “the big white guy who thinks he’s the little black guy”), and who introduces himself as such. Being unfamiliar with the real Michael Jackson, Homer believes and quickly befriends him. The institution features a great cast of background characters, my favorite being the Chief who hasn’t spoken in decades because no one reached out to him.

Upon hearing what has happened to Homer, Marge comes to the institution and is able to convince Homer’s doctors that he is not insane. Homer bids farewell to Michael, who reveals that he is in the mental institution voluntarily. Homer decides to let him stay in the family home. He calls and tells Bart that he is bringing Michael to stay for a few days. Against Homer and Michael’s wishes, Bart spreads the word that Michael Jackson is coming and soon all of Springfield turns up outside of the Simpson’s home to see Michael. The level of excitement is deflated when Homer introduces Michael and they realize he is an impostor.

After overhearing Lisa write in a letter that she is disowning Bart as a brother, the faux Michael convinces Bart to let him help. Together they write and perform a song for Lisa’s birthday called “Happy Birthday Lisa”. Lisa is thrilled and hugs her brother, saying that he has given her the best present ever. Afterwards, Michael reveals that his real name is Leon Kompowsky, a bricklayer from Paterson, New Jersey. He explains that he had been very angry for most of his life, but found some peace in talking in Jackson’s voice because it made everyone around him happy. Leon bids farewell to the Simpsons and walks off down the road, singing Lisa’s birthday song to himself in his normal voice.

Leon Kompowsky does make another appearance in the couch gag for “Them, Robot” (S23, E17).

While the New Bedlam institution is never seen again, signs of it do reappear on a couple occasions.

“Treehouse of Horror IV” (S05, E05)

In segment two of THOH IV, Bart’s bus is attacked by a gremlin (or is it?). As no one believes his story, he is carted away into an ambulance headed to the New Bedlam Mental Hospital.

“Mother Simpson” (S07, E08)

The institution makes another quick 1-second appearance when a straightjacket is found by the staff of SNPP, during their forced volunteering highway cleaning duties.

I’m not going to go into much detail about THOH IV or Mother Simpson, but do recommend everyone watch both episodes, as both were phenomenal.

So there you go… Leon Kompowsky and New Bedlam Rest Home. Did you remember the episodes? Splurge your donuts on the musical maestro? Got a random appearance you love that I didn’t bother mentioning? Happy Springfield got the King of Pop? Sound off in the comments and happy classy tapping friends.

TTFN… Safi, in for Wookiee, out!

9 responses to “Where Did THAT Come From – New Bedlam Rest Home & Leon Kompowsky

  1. This was my absolute favorite episode! Lisa’s Birthday song must have been composed by Michael Jackson himself as it is so well done. The song actually sounds as though a child had written it but so wonderful and cleverly composed that certainly Michael himself must have written it. Thanks for the article.

  2. Back when I square danced, and couples wore “matching” outfits…
    One gal had a dress pink top and black skirt, while her husband
    he had a matching pink shirt and black slacks. He was proud of that shirt
    We all kept our mouths shut that the buttons were on the left side.

    We square danced…… an out fit was an outfit . Regardless
    And this was a “yes, dear” “whatever you say, dear” couple……

  3. The building design is too similar to the other asylum. I would store that one, but then I lose the 12-hour job for the babysitting bandit. Curses, EA!

  4. Leon: To make a tired point, which one of us is truly crazy?
    Homer: Not me! I’ve got this! ( shows off his Not Insane certificate )
    Love Love Love!!!!

  5. I am so happy to finally have MJ in my town ♡

  6. One of the most iconic early episodes of The Simpsons. One I’ve never forgotten. As a matter of fact, my next door neighbor’s name is Lisa, and for her birthday this year (earlier than this event) my wife sent a video to her with Leon’s “Happy Birthday Lisa” song. An absolute must-buy for me on sheer nostalgia.

  7. I like the moment when that doctor finds out Bart exists 😀

  8. Leon was an immediate buy for me. I remember the episode very well, even though I haven’t seen it in years. It was a very sweet episode, and the song Bart and Leon sang together still plays in my mind (“Lisa it’s your birthday, happy birthday Lisa.”).

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