Sometimes, when The Simpsons makes a dated reference, it seems more silly than anything else.
This episode spends a good deal of time with Homer parked between the Twin Towers. And then there’s Bart’s bus flier.
OK, let’s move on.
It’s another heavy drinking night at Moe’s, which is true of any day of the week ending with a “y’. What makes this night a bit different is Moe needs to select a designated driver. And somehow, it becomes Barney.
Yes, Barney has to stay sober. And it occurs on the night Duffman (in his first appearance) arrives at Moe’s for a contest Barney won for sending in labels. This is the worst night ever.
So, in retaliation, Barney drives off in Homer’s car. Two months later, neither Barney nor the car have been seen, but a limo shows up to drop Barney off. He was in the trunk, drinking.
Where’s the car? Well, if Homer checked his mail more often, he might have known it was in New York City. But Homer hates that place. He went there once when he was 17, was robbed by just about everybody, got trash dumped on his head by Woody Allen, and finally ran from a street pimp and fell down a manhole. As a result, Homer hates New York City.
But Marge and the kids really want to go. There’s even some deep discount bus fare that even Bart can afford. So, the family goes. Homer finds his car, covered in tickets and with a boot attached, between the Twin Towers. Eventually, when he realizes he can’t chew the boot off, he calls the right number and there’s Joan Kenley’s voice again. What comes next is everything that could go wrong for Homer does, from awful ethnic food, crab juice, being away from his car when the ticket person shows up, and finally driving off with the boot still attached until he can get a jackhammer, bust up the rest of the car, and then drive off.
As for Marge, Lisa, and Bart, they just have a good time visiting Chinatown, seeing a Broadway show possibly with Ryan, window shopping, riding the subway, and Bart even finds the offices of Mad Magazine. Truly, it was a magical day for the entire family. Even Maggie!
You know, except for Homer, who can’t wait to get out and would never go back if he had to, even when Lisa asks him if they can come back next year.
Though next time, maybe Homer will be in a better mood if he doesn’t get a bag of medical waste to the face as he drives out of the city.