February 27, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Simpsons Did It!: “Pranksta Rap”

In which Bart fakes a kidnapping that allows many people to benefit from the lie.

So far in season sixteen, we’ve seen the Simpsons get a fantastic modern kitchen, Moe’s Tavern gets remodeled into a classy English-style pub, and in this episode, Chief Wiggum gets promoted to Police Commissioner.

I don’t think any of these changes last past a single episode.

There’s a big rap concert in Springfield, with the main headline belonging to Alcatraaz.  Bart would like to go, but Homer won’t give him the fifty dollars necessary to secure a ticket.  Bart asks if he can go if he can pay for his own ticket.  Homer agrees while addressing Bart as “Jerry.”

You know what this episode never covers?  Where Bart got fifty dollars.

However, on the night of the concert, Marge sees Bart headed out with his jeans baggy and a hoody over his head.  She knows where he’s going, and as far as Marge is concerned, rap is all about punching, boasting, and disrespect to hoes.  That’s no place for a ten year old.  And with Marge weighing in, Homer will flip flop.

But Bart didn’t pay fifty dollars, money from an unknown origin, to skip the concert, so he sneaks out and even gets onstage when a mic falls in his lap.  Dissing Homer makes for some good rhymes, and Alcatraaz even gives Bart a ride home.  50 Cent wishes Bart well in a manner that does not count towards his community service, but Bart overhears Marge and Homer furious at him.  Bart can take his punishment like a man or lie like a kid.

Guess which he does.

Yeah, he lies by faking a kidnapping.  With the entire town looking for him, Bart confides in Milhouse, who takes Bart to hide at Kirk’s place.  Meanwhile, Chief Wiggum is tired of everyone laughing at him, so he doubles down after a weird dream or hallucination of Barney Fife or Don Knotts or a ghost or something telling him he needs to find Bart.  A quick phone tap reveals Bart is making stove-top popcorn while Kirk is at his job as an ineffective scarecrow.  Wiggum recognizes the brand, and Apu states that there are only two idiots cheap enough to buy the brand that occasionally includes baby teeth, and Wiggum is one of them.

As such, Kirk gets arrested for kidnapping, Wiggum gets a promotion to Police Commissioner, Lou gets promoted to Chief, and Eddie gets promoted to Lou.  They don’t need a new Eddie.  Bart feels guilty about it, but when he confesses, Wiggum panics he’ll lose his new job, and we learn Kirk is now popular with all the crazy women of Springfield while getting a roof over his head and three meals a day, so it’s better to keep the whole thing quiet.

Bart agrees.  Who would ruin such a set-up?


Yes, Lisa finds the evidence in Bart’s treehouse that he went to the concert.  First she tries going to Homer, but Homer burns the evidence since he sold the story’s movie rights and then spent the money foolishly as he tends to do.  Then Lisa tries Principal Skinner.  Skinner will jump at the chance to nail Springfield Elementary’s second worst criminal right after the mysterious El Barto.

What happens?  Well, Lisa and Skinner go to Alcatraaz’s place and get video proof Bart was there on the night in question, but then Wiggum, Homer, and Bart show up and convince even the hardcore rappers that there’s no harm in the lie that makes everyone happy.  Lisa isn’t so sure, but a big house party ends her concerns, mostly.  I mean, Lisa was raised–by Marge–to respect the truth.  So, yeah, she won’t be happy but that’s how they roll in Springfield.

Now where did Bart get that fifty dollars?