I’m going to start by making it clear, that while this episode is almost entirely about a love relationship between Bart and Mary Spuckler, I actually saved this last WDTCF post from this Mini-Event, because I love the building that the Springfield Opry House is based upon.
I think it is interesting the way we toss around the word, “Love.” We love our significant others, we love our kids, we love our country, we love our sports teams, and we love the concept of being in love. But we also love a whole bunch of inanimate objects that don’t really return our love, as much as we shower them with affection and obsession…to the point where the kind of deep, passionate, romantic love that is actually important (along with unconditional love for one another), is watered down, by our love for stuff. But, I digress…
But after all of that, I love the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. I mean it. It is a place that gives me far more pleasure and takes me to a state of awe, than loads of other places (especially the cheesy NEW Grand Ol’ Opry also in Nashville). Maybe it’s because it had such a weird start, as something completely different than the true birthplace of country music (a union hall and evangelical church)…but it is just as likely, that it is one of those places that is so perfect in design and function, that you can stand almost anywhere, and feel the history, and a sense of reverence for the talents that graced the stage there. It is truly unique. I could write a book on the topic…but instead, will just link you here, to the history of the place and the Opry.
I realize that there are countless places in the world that have this same sense of “Holyfreakinshirt…I can’t believe I’m standing here” across the globe. I’ve been to loads and loads of the world’s greatest landmarks…from Versailles to London’s cathedrals and Parliament…our own amazing government buildings…and cathedrals…and grand palaces of the rich (Biltmore Estate and Hearst Castle)…but none give me that same sense of simple, amazing perfection like the Ryman. I love it. Really.
But…this is about the Simpsons...and the building that looks a TON like the Ryman…and actually goes so far as to mimic the heyday of the Ryman when “The Grand Ole Opry” was broadcast nationwide from NBC affiliate, WSM.
And it is about Love...and Mary…and Bart, with the Springfield Opry House actually playing a pretty small role in the episode.
The entire episode is narrated by a “Woody Allen-esque” Bart…with an assist from a character who is supposed to actually be Woody Allen.
Bart and Mary run into one another at school, and their relationship sparks into something more than just admiration. However, Bart ends up going the route of many young suitors in the digital age, and doesn’t spend “real time” with Mary, but instead, plays too many video games.
Mary, an aspiring songwriter, writes a song for Bart, which he mostly ignores. She also uses this song in her attempt to win a “Hillbilly Talent Contest” (held at the Springfield Opry House). She doesn’t win, but is offered a record deal (and another chance at romance) by a Brazlian record producer. Mary ends up breaking up with Bart, before she leaves.
Meanwhile…in the “B Story” Homer and Bart get into a heated argument with Marge about how women never say what they really mean (duh!)…which results in the both of them being kicked out by marge, and then moving to Brokewood Apts. with a ton of other losers.
In the end…Homer wins back Marge with a “Big Gesture” (what’s new?) but Bart doesn’t win back Mary…a tough lesson is learned.
The last bit of dialogue is great…and actually some of the best, from an otherwise “tepid” episode.
Bart as Narrator: And that’s when I learned Cupid was just a fat, naked jerk with an arrow.
Woody Allen Character: But surely you didn’t give up on love after just one setback? Love is our only defense against the abyss in this meaningless universe.
Bart as Narrator: Love– what is it? What does it mean? How do you spell it? No one knows. Fortunately there is a cure.
Any video game ever made.
And perhaps that even includes TSTO!
But keep your phones in your pocket when you visit the Ryman. If you get distracted, you may miss the ghosts of some of the greatest Country artists who are rumored to roam the halls to this day.
Loving this event, a nice breather from the last few.
Only complaint is it’s a mini-event (the rap 1 lasted forever…)
I’m curious about something…
I’ve noticed a disturbing trend on the internet recently.
How come all the ads here (and on some other sites I frequent) are for very naughty & explicit websites?
Do they pay tsto addics a kickback or something?
Seems weird for a family-friendly space?
We don’t choose the ads they’re based on your internet history…
Well……..not meaning to get too personal…but the AdSense (driven by Google) ads are targeted for each user, according to their own browser history. I searched for a deal on a power drill on Amazon, and had power drill and construction product ads for a week. They are individualized…so…not that I would imply anything, but, you should check your browser history…especially if someone else my be using your computer.
I currently am showing an ad for Universal Studios…and two ads for some expose on Rush Limbaugh. Not sure what is obscene about that…but it is unsettling. Because I universally despise Rush…
Kinda funny that only on the page talking about Amber Dempsey are 2 ads for fake eyelashes😆.
Grandparents dragged us kicking n screaming to Nashville when I was in junior high.
Worst place on earth for a sullen punk/new waver.
Or so I thought.
Gained a real appreciation for c&w as a result.
I am not a huge country fan either. But the history of the Ryman, and the huge range of stars who graced the stage there…hard not to be humbled!
Johnny Cash is my favorite musician of all time 🙂 I just had to say that
He was an innovator until the end…no doubt about it. I was not a fan, until my grandparents gave me, “Johnny Cash Live from San Quenten,” for Christmas. My grandfather was instrumental in my interest in guitar, and my grandma was a huge Johnny fan. I listened to the record and was blown away by the raw “rock star” energy of his music. I still have that album in my collection…from 1969…
When my daughter lived in Nashville she was in a community chorus (Nashville in Harmony – they’re fabulous, by the way!) that performed at the Ryman. It was a thrill to think about all the great music that had been made there and to know that she was now a part of it. Love that place.
I’m envious of your daughter! I’ve stood on the stage…on the tour…and the acoustics of that place are just amazing! I can’t imagine how wonderful a full choir must have sounded there! It is after all, the birthplace of the “high lonesome harmonies” of bluegrass, with Bill Monroe.
How ungrateful of Bart. If somebody wrote me a song I’d be delighted.