This episode answers the question about how best to stop being the town pariah: become a bullfighter.
The NFL is looking for a new city to expand to, and Homer decides he is going to be the one who makes Springfield the top choice. Seeing as how Springfield is mostly known at that point at leading the nation in heart attacks, maybe his family should try encouraging him. Heck, even Maggie doubts him, though the subtitles tell me Maggie thinks Homer’s name is “Bald Mommy”.
As it is, Homer works for a good long time and manages to design a team name, logo, and stadium. The team name? The Springfield Meltdowns. The stadium’s name? Duff Beer Krusty Burger Buzz Cola Costington’s Department Store Kwik-E-Mart Stupid Flanders Park.
As it is, Springfield’s biggest competition is Los Angeles. That city sent a video featuring guest star Rob Reiner talking up how awesome LA is and how awful Springfield is. It somehow doesn’t work, so Springfield is going to get the stadium once the commissioner gets there to say so. With most of the town waiting, the commissioner doesn’t show. Why? Springfielders renamed all the streets after football terms, and he gets lost. He stops at a random house to use the bathroom and the phone. Whose house is it? The Simpsons’. Who’s home? Grampa watching Maggie.
Sadly for the commish, Grampa puts on a 60 Minutes type show where Snake is talking about how easy it is to rob elderly viewers of said show by coming in to use the phone and/or the bathroom. Grampa figures the dude in the suit is up to no good and clobbers him with a golf club. Eventually, the rest of the Simpsons get home and find Grampa has the guy tied up. Letting him out, the commish declares Springfield will never get a pro football team. The question comes up: what does Grampa contribute to the family. He says he sometimes watches the baby. Marge asks where Maggie is. Says Grampa, “Oh God, you left ME watching a baby?!”
Model babysitter right there.
As it is, maybe the town shouldn’t have gone ahead and built Duff Beer Krusty Burger Buzz Cola Costington’s Department Store Kwik-E-Mart Stupid Flanders Park until after they got that team thing finalized. That does tend to give people a good reason to hate Grampa, so he makes an appointment with one of those assisted suicide doctors. The doctor hooks Grampa up to a machine and almost finishes the process in a manner that looks an awful lot like the movie Soylent Green. But the cops bust in to say the law changed just before Grampa dies and lead the doctor out. Waking up, Grampa thinks he’s died until he finds the rest of his family out at Luigi’s for dinner. He didn’t die. But the brief period where he was living without fear inspired him in ways we can’t imagine, so he’s going to live without fear.
That means eating salt water taffy and doing tricks at the skateboard park on a small electric cart. Also, it means when that big expensive stadium is converted into a bullfighting arena, he volunteers to be a matador. Hey, either the bull dies or Grampa does. Everybody wins.
Well, not everybody. Lisa’s against the whole thing because of the whole “a bull or Grampa dies” thing. You can probably guess what happens next.
That’s right. Grampa has second thoughts while in the ring and lets all the bulls out, allowing them to rampage through the streets of Springfield.
You know, maybe he should have thought that through a bit more.