In this episode, Marge finds a Chanel suit super cheap in an outlet mall. She buys it and somehow this suit gives the whole family access to a country club full of rich, snooty types. Marge desperately wants to fit in, at the expense of her family being themselves.
Does that seem out of character for Marge?
I would argue not really. Marge-centric episodes tend to focus on how dissatisfied her life can be as a homemaker and not much else. Every so often, Marge attempts to step out and find some fulfillment. How is this different? The fact that Marge initially balks at even buying the suit, and then finds herself just wearing it around the house, leads to a country club invite. There she meets a lot of wealthy women that Marge just wants to impress. But none of her family really fit in. Sure, Lisa loves the ponies, but her political thinking rebels at everything else. Bart has to be told specifically “No grifting!” And Homer eventually finds himself a fairly good golfer after some pointers from pro-golfer Tom Kite (Homer had swiped his clubs).
The episode here mostly hinges on Marge wanting to get herself and her family up the social ladder by becoming members of the country club. That’s not an overly funny story. It speaks to Marge’s insecurities, and how her life just doesn’t match up to the wealthy. Lisa suggests the rich are different than the Simpsons, and Marge immediately agrees, adding the rich “are better”. She clarifies it by saying she meant socially, but it’s out there.
It doesn’t help that one of the women at the club keeps pointing out Marge is wearing the same suit every day, even after Marge has modified it into new looks. Marge reaches a level of desperation that she spends the family’s savings on a new Chanel dress. But it is during a desperate walk to the club for an evening social when Homer innocently suggests that Marge is finally showing the family what awful people they are that Marge snaps out of her whatever this was and realizes she actually likes her family and their foibles.
Which is too bad. The family did get the invite to join the club, though how Homer could afford the dues I imagine the club had to have is beyond me. That came after Homer had exposed Mr. Burns as an unwitting golf cheat since Smithers was always off planting balls when no one was looking. Would Homer have liked Burns’ pickled fig cake? I do not know.
But really, the whole thing is Grampa’s fault. Had he not broke the family TV during a visit, they never would have gone to the outlet mall where Marge found that heavily discounted suit in the first place.
Huh, this write-up isn’t very funny. I suppose the episode wasn’t either, but what am I gonna do? Skip one?
Wait, I could have done that…