February 1, 2023

Gabbing Geek

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Simpsons Did It!: “Treehouse Of Horror XI”

In which we tell more tales of potential terror.

Season twelve starts with–holy crap, I have written these into the twelfth season–with another Halloween episode, and that means a Kang and Kodos appearance, only this time they get stuck at the end waiting for the call to ask them to appear on the show.

So, yeah.

What happens here?  Well, truth be told, I think I enjoyed these more this time around than when I first saw them.  Homer as a ghost with 24 hours to do a good deed to get into Heaven?  Yeah, makes sense.  Some sort of Grimm Fairy Tale rewrite?  I can see it.  Dolphins coming onto the land to drive humanity into the sea?  Yeah, that sounds like a recipe for a good Simpsons Halloween.

Though why fairy tales are used as a possible horror story, I am not sure.  It is true that the original Grimm stories have been heavily sanitized in the past couple centuries, but modern retellings of fairy tales don’t leap out as horror stories.  Then again, last year we saw Bart and Lisa as superheroes, so maybe this segment is done only because there was no other way to tell this story.  Besides, there was some horror, like “Son” and “Daughter” learning they had other siblings in the forest, or their skeletal remains (Daughter is right when she says Mother and Father aren’t great parents).  And things don’t end well for a Goldilocks trapped in the house with the Three Bears, or for that witch with the gingerbread house.

The first story is also a somewhat typical Homer screws up story.  His horoscope says he will die and get a compliment from an attractive co-worker.  His hope on the latter is Lenny, and it is Lenny.  What is it about Lenny?  But despite many horrifying accidents, Homer only dies when Marge makes him eat his vegetables and he chokes on the broccoli.  Heck, his ghost chokes to death on the same piece later on.  And though Homer does save a baby’s life, St. Peter missed it, so off he goes to Hell where the devil will treat him to painful noogies for all eternity.

But then there are the dolphins.

After Lisa rescues one from a really bad version of SeaWorld (knowing as I do that SeaWorld is pretty damn bad), the dolphin in question turns out to be a dolphin king, and he’s mad as hell.  They made him do tricks like a common seal!  So, the dolphins return to land where they used to live.  They kill Lenny!  What is it about Lenny?  They also kill the Sea Captain, who may have had the only solution to save the day.  And then after killing a few more people, there’s war in the streets, where a dolphin can beat Homer with a bag of oranges…say what?  Will humanity let this pass?  They’ve caused the extinction of other species!

Well, no.  Turns out, as Homer observed, the dolphins wanted it more.  Humans are out in the sea, the dolphins are on land.  Marge says they’ll just have to get used to it.

Well, except for Krusty.  He’s already drowned.

Man, that’s a dark way for me to end this thing.  Let’s try something else…

Much better.
Much better.
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