April 24, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Simpsons Did It!: “Wad Goals”

In which Marge and Bart find themselves on the opposite side of a dispute over the local golf course.

Apparently, Marge is against a golf course that has been in the middle of Springfield all this time.  She didn’t seem so adverse when the family was looking to join the Springfield Country Club.  Heck, Homer turned out to be quite good at golf.

It’s almost like continuity doesn’t matter on this show.

This episode also has the distinction of using Kevin Michael Richardson as the voice of Dr. Hibbert, but really, the biggest thing to start and end this episode are the Wiggums.  First up is Ralph leading the Parade Day parade.  If you’re thinking that seems odd, it’s because that’s all in Ralph’s…let’s say imagination, and he’s really walking very slowly down a street with a line of angry cars behind him.  He eventually walks off to a giant hedge that’s been in the center of town for a while and manages to slip through it.  What he sees on the other side amazes him…

So much so that he tells other kids at school, and they all follow, with Bart showing how to pass through a hedge the way his dad did in that famous meme.  Ralph said there was Easter eggs, clowns, and funny cars.  He’s not wrong.  The eggs are golf balls.  The funny cars are golf carts.  And the clowns are golfers in funny pants.

Yes, it’s a golf course that has been at the center of town for…who knows how long.  And it isn’t long before Bart and Milhouse see Jimbo getting a big tip from Dr. Hibbert by being a wee bit obsequious while working as Hibbert’s caddy.  Since school is out for the summer, Bart and Milhouse sign up, and while Milhouse isn’t much of a brown-noser, Bart is quite proficient at it and starts making lots of large tips from well-off golfers.  His goal is to caddy for the club’s president Bildorf (guest star Stephen Root) .  That guy never tips less than $100.

So, Bart has a job, it pays well, and he’s buying ice cream for the family.  Heck, Principal Skinner is caddying there for the summer after taking a pointer from Bart.  What can go wrong?

Marge sees Bart in action, and the sucking-up to rich guys rubs her the wrong way.  She isn’t sure why.  She just thinks it’s bad.  And Bart won’t quit the job.  He’ll even pay off Homer when Homer comes to tell him to quit under the mistaken impression that Bart listens to Homer and Homer won’t listen to money pealed off Bart’s prized wad of cash.

So, Marge does the only other thing she can think of:  ask Lisa for help.  Lisa can come up with a host of reasons why golf courses are bad, and she helps Marge set up an online petition.  The problem is Marge’s petition title was too long, so she shorted some of it to “S.J.W.” and got a whole lot of signatures really fast.  OK, Marge doesn’t see that as a problem, but not Bildorf takes Bart as a caddy, mostly to get tips on how to stop Marge.  Not sure why he needs to.  Every well-connected person in town is playing the game.  Marge seems to be alone.  Homer is mostly just driving her places.  Bart even suggests they call the course a religion since it brings people there more reliably on Sundays and lots of people shout out stuff to God while playing, earning the course a tax-exempt status.

Marge tries with some local religious leaders.  They all end up joining the club on a group discount.  Looks like Marge lost.

And then Bildorf dumps Bart for his regular caddy despite Bart’s help.  Bart says he’ll be a member someday and Bildorf will learn a lesson then.  Bildorf doesn’t buy it because once a suck-up, always a suck-up.  Bart quits in disgust.

You know, Bart may be a suck-up, but there’s one thing he’s also been in his life:  a vandal and prankster.  He still has a wad of cash, and he did have his eye on a nice, new ATV…

OK, Bart coming back with the ATV wasn’t a surprise.  The surprise was Bart didn’t buy it.  He rented it…because he had enough cash to rent a whole bunch of them for him and his equally destructive friends.

That doesn’t shut down the club, but it sure did make a mess.  No, what shut down the club was the other Wiggum, Chief Clancy Wiggum.  He showed up to arrest people…not Bart and his friends.  No, Bildorf and some others because starting a public religion inevitably leads to a weird sex cult.  And this one was really weird.

So, Bart and Marge make up, and you should never let a Wiggum find a golf course.  I think we all learned a valuable lesson.  I don’t know what it is, but I am sure it’s valuable.