December 2, 2023

Gabbing Geek

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Simpsons Did It!: “Mother And Child Reunion”

In which Lisa and Marge have a dispute that lasts years.

Remember when Lisa got elected President of the United States during a flashforward in an episode I have often seen on “worst episode of all time” lists?  Did you ever wonder how she got elected?  Well…this episode shows more of that but still doesn’t explain anything.

If anything, the weirdest part of this episode is the SImpsons are shopping at a magic store run by…guest star Werner Herzog?!?  And he can show the future with tarot cards?!?  I am not sure if the show is still trying or trying too hard at this point.

So, anyway, flashforward to a time when Lisa is getting ready to choose a college to go to.  Marge is very excited.  She’s been anticipating this forever as Lisa would be the first Simpson to go to and probably graduate college.  That pleases Grampa too, since he’s hoping Lisa will find cures for everything that ales him.  Maybe he can even remember which eye to put the patch over…

All this turns out to be too much for Lisa who, after being accepted to every college she applied to…opts not to go at all.


Lisa figures she shouldn’t go to make other people happy.  She should, instead, work on something she really wants.  Bart is actually not helpful here when he points out all the fun Lisa missed out on growing up.  Flashback to Lisa studying all the time…

This doesn’t sit well with Marge who sacrificed all kinds of things to get Lisa where she is.

And this is where the episode gets…well, maybe not weird.  More like odd.  I mean, I would have thought any episode with a title like that would be more about Homer and his mother as such things usually are, but instead, Lisa finds an unconventional path to success.  After consulting the man who had always been there for her over the years (Ned Flanders), she gets a job at a mall food court.

By the by:  best joke of the episode is Rod and Tod Flanders, even as adults, act the exact same way they do as kids.

But then when an illiterate kid shows up unable to read the menu, Lisa gets an idea to set up an unconventional school to educate troubled kids.  She even helps Chief Wiggum learn basic math when he can’t make change for the license fee.  From there, Lisa runs against Superintendent Chalmers, gets his job, moves on to governor of the state where she goes from being covered by an increasingly worse off Kent Brockman on to being covered by guest star George Stephanopoulos as final guest star Nate Silver predicts Lisa will sail into the Oval Office.

So, that’s how Lisa became President…I guess.

And Marge is still upset Lisa didn’t go to college.

Considering how much this episode calls college a racket, showing Lisa on a scale of other presidents who didn’t go as well as calling out student loan debt and how worthless the Squeaky Voiced Teen’s philosophy degree is…I have no idea what this episode is trying to do.

Anyway, the unlikely peacemaker is Bart.  He’s now the successful head of a legal weed empire–an unlikely route to becoming Chief Justice of the Supreme Court–he points out Marge was always there for Lisa, showing the earlier flashback as Marge was always off to the side helping Lisa.  Lisa gets Marge to come to the White House, and Marge immediately asks when Lisa will admit she should have gone to college.  But as president, Lisa has a mother-child translator who can fix the whole mess, and Marge and Lisa make up on the White House roof.  And that’s…the end of the episode?!?

Well, not really.  A scene that plays out during the closing credits shows Lisa asking the Amazing Herzog is this vision will come to pass, so he uses a crystal ball to summon the spirit of Nate Silver to give the odds for Lisa’s future.  To Homer’s chagrin, he cannot watch the game on it.

This episode was weird and not very funny.  Maybe we should keep Lisa out of the White House…