Does The Simpsons air in China? Because I am thinking this episode probably doesn’t, at least without some heavy editing.
Mr. Burns is looking to renew his driver’s license. He hasn’t since 1909. Heck, he ran over three people on the way to the DMV, and even if Hans Moleman is happy to be out somewhere, Selma still has to give the old man a road test. The test seems to go OK until Selma starts to feel very hot. She rolls down a window in the middle of winter, but that doesn’t help too much. So, she pops the roof of Burns’ stretch convertible, and the breeze catches the roof and makes the car swivel all over. It ends when Burns, unable to control the car, hits a snowbank. Selma flies out and melts a hole in the snow, but she’s still hot.
What’s wrong with Selma? Dr. Hibbert explains it away as hot flashes, an early sign of menopause. He has a video featuring actor, smooth operator, and women’s health advocate Robert Wagner to maybe explain the whole thing as much as any video on this show explains anything to anybody, and Selma realizes she can’t have a baby.
What about Jub-Jub? Well, he won’t do anything for Selma in her old age aside from eat her when she dies. She needs a child. She’ll have to try adoption.
First attempts go poorly when Cletus comes back to the orphanage to claim his latest offspring. It seems Brandine was really saying she wanted to get rid of her rabies. That’s…much worse.
Lisa recommends adopting from China. They have lots of baby girls up for adoption. Selma thinks that’s a good idea, but the guy at the consulate explains that China requires her to be married. And they know who MacGyver is. And they expect Selma and her husband to spend time in China to make sure it isn’t a scam.
Selma writes down the name of the only man she can think of on short notice to pose as her husband in a case like this: Homer Simpson.
Homer, elsewhere, feels a shudder run through his body, but Lenny says Sloppy Joes can do that sort of thing.
But the next thing we know, Selma is flying the Simpsons who aren’t Maggie to China without telling Homer why. Marge is in on the plan, and she knows to wait until the liquor and sleeping pills kick in. Selma asks Homer for a favor, but he won’t do that sort of thing for her. Marge asks, and since Marge made sure Homer’s life didn’t turn into one, long spiraling decay of death and misery, he’ll do it for her. Now, they’re even.
So, the Simpsons land and meet functionary Madame Wu (guest start Lucy Liu). She’s told Selma is married to Homer, Bart and Lisa are their kids, and Marge is their nanny, whom Homer calls “Miss October”. Wu’s going to be keeping an eye on them while they visit Chinese cultural sites. When asked what he does for a living, Homer realizes he can say anything and no one will know better. What does Homer say his profession is? Well, he spots some guys doing stuff and says he does what they do. What do they do? They’re Chinese acrobats.
That becomes a problem when a trip to a show has an act canceled when a top acrobat developed a sudden case of outspokenness and met with a few too many bullets. With dissent in the audience, Wu appeals to Homer to save their communist paradise. Homer found that odd since he saw evidence of rudimentary free market economics, but he’s soon on stage for a chair stunt that he mostly pulls off when he’s flipped on top of a large stack of chairs. The chairs collapsing under Homer’s weight was the part that didn’t work out.
Homer awoke in the hospital, and Selma had been given a little girl she named Ling Bouvier. Out of gratitude, Selma gives Homer some alone time with Miss October, and Wu spies the whole thing through a painting. She’s been deceived! She takes that baby back. No baby for Selma! Considering that baby’s first instinct was to grab Homer by the eyeballs, she would seem to be the perfect child for Selma. Can the Simpsons get Ling back?
Yes, but only if Homer disguises himself as a Buddha statue to be dragged inside the orphanage to preserve feng shui, which may or may not be a Chinese scam to listen to the guards. Homer can even find Ling by looking for the baby that grabs his eyeballs. And when Wu stops the group later, Selma can use her DMV experience to talk to Wu bureaucrat to bureaucrat. That works, since even if China expects a two parent household, Wu lost her own father when he choked to death on a ping pong ball one day before the invention of the Heimlich maneuver. Since Wu herself turned out OK with a single mother, Selma can have Ling, and everyone goes home.
Except for Bart who’s been replaced by a spy, though Homer doesn’t mind since New Bart is a lot more respectful.
So, here in a season that gained us Marge’s new kitchen, Chief Wiggum as Commissioner Wiggum, and a revamped version of Moe’s Tavern, we have a major addition to Selma’s family that may very well be largely forgotten in the seasons to come. I hope we all learned a valuable lesson.
Shaolin monks are not like the guards at Westminster when it comes to not reacting when mocked.