I’ve mentioned before about EA/Gracie’s weird penchant for selecting characters that are barely in an episode. This time…they have really “Jumped the Marge” in that both of these characters don’t appear in an episode…but in an episode within an episode…as in episodes of Itchy and Scratchy.
Let’s agree that the Itchy and Scratchy cartoons are very short…so anything that is in them most likely has even shorter screen time. Well…Mrs. Scratchy and the “Disapproving Squirrel” certainly meet that low standard.
Along with the Reality Channel and the RC Van, we have characters from three very different episodes…and none staying on screen for more than a few seconds.
Odd…and yet…somewhat predictable these days. The more obscure, the better chance we have of seeing them in the game. But, I digress…
Where do these items come from???
Let’s start with Mrs. Scratchy. She is from the episode, Loan-a-Lisa, S22E2.
As the WIKI synopsizes:
“When Grampa gives each member of the family a portion of his savings, Lisa invests in Nelson’s brand-new business venture, but soon realizes that her friend’s instant success might lure him away from the classroom. Worried that his judgment might be clouded, Lisa introduces Nelson to Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg, only to find out that he too dropped out of school. But when Nelson’s business suddenly takes a sharp turn, Lisa teaches her friend that education is invaluable.”
And what does that have to do with Mrs. Scratchy? Nothing. Except that the episode starts with an Itchy and Scratchy Cartoon that features Scratchy and Mrs. Scratchy. Boom. There you have it. Well worth a full character.
At least as it pertains to some semblance of continuity, the “Disapproving Squirrel” is at least tied to a Simpsons character…Marge (could you tell by the pic?). “Itchy & Scratchy & Marge” is the twenty-second episode of The Simpsons and the ninth episode of the second season (S2E9).
After watching an Itchy and Scratchy cartoon, Maggie strikes Homer with a mallet. Horrified, Marge vows to put a stop to violence on children’s television. But when the ball of censorship starts to roll, where will it all end?”
“Dear Purveyors of Senseless Violence: I know this may sound silly at first, but I believe that the cartoons you show to our children are influencing their behavior in a negative way. Please try to tone down the psychotic violence in your otherwise fine programming. Yours truly, Marge Simpson.”
―Marge’s letter to Roger Meyers, Jr.
In short…they clean up Itchy and Scratchy (to the consternation of the Springfield youth). Poking fun at Marge, The Disapproving Squirrel is a parody, of Marge’s campaign against violence. But, again…she/it only appears for a few seconds.
And FINALLY…we have the “Reality Channel” (Telling It Like it is NOT) which is a clear parody of the FOX News channel…a favorite target of the Simpsons. We also can buy the RC Van. These are both pretty tame/lame items…BUT…the van does offer pretty a substantial Bonus Multiplier…(as does Mrs. Scratchy) making it worth their hefty price tags. Mostly.
The actual episode this is from has nothing to do with Itchy and Scratchy.
“Helter Shelter” is the fifth episode of season 14 (S14E5). It originally aired December 1, 2002. The episode was written by Brian Pollack and Mert Rich and Mark Kirkland directed. David Landers guest starred as Squiggy (remember Lavern and Shirly?) and Larry Holmes (remember real boxing???) as himself.
“The Simpsons attend a hockey game and Lisa brings home a souvenir hockey stick, but the stick has Russian termites, which quickly infest the whole house. When they learn that the house needs to be fumigated and will be uninhabitable for six months, the family look for another place to live and join a reality TV show where they must live like a family from 1895.”
The network? You guessed it. And they apparently have a van.
Sarah Wiggum appears in 24 episodes….compared to these characters and their unmemorable “screen blips.” I for one would really like to sit in on a meeting of bigwigs who decide this stuff…because, they are clearly just trying to make us mad. Sarah. Give us Sarah. And while we’re at it… GET RID OF THE ITEM LIMITS! Sorry…you knew I had to throw that one in…right?
What do YOU think about these “prizes” as opposed to Sarah? Let EA know what you think!!