Why is this episode called “Iron Marge”? I have no idea. I see Megan Mullally is back as Sarah Wiggum. I think she had maybe three lines. I don’t know. I just took a week off.
So, Marge’s birthday is coming up, and that means she’ll get presents. Normally, her kids give her handmade arts’n’crafts stuff, the sort of thing that was probably made from an art class, and normally Marge is fine with that. But after a car accident in front of the Simpson house, and when the Simpsons go out to see what happened, a number of the neighborhood moms mock Marge for not getting a nice bathrobe from her kids.
Homer, meanwhile, stops Kirk VanHouten from stepping on a live electrical wire, and that leads him to an app that allows people to warn others in town of potential dangers because Homer wants to be the top warning guy, a competition with Agnes Skinner, and Homer’s ending the episode stuck at the bottom of a sinkhole, believing Agnes is terrible but also at peace with not having to warn people of the slightest inconvenience all the time. It’s, you know, a Homer plot.
But hold on, this looks like a Marge episode. Sort of. Lisa realizes that maybe cheap arts and crafts aren’t an actual good gift, so she and Bart should go get Marge that new bathrobe. They manage to get some money by guilting Ned Flanders into paying them a good chunk of money, but then the two find a spy kit of some kind that costs the same amount of money and decide to get that instead. They can each get a free ironing board cover by applying for a credit card they are too young to have, and that’s like getting a new ironing board.
OK, so, here’s the thing: I get Bart going nuts for the spy kit with the secret microphones and stuff…but Lisa? Lisa is way too responsible to do something like this. Why would Lisa do something this kinda dumb? It feels out of character.
Then again, Ned Flanders is at Marge’s birthday party which is otherwise just Homer and the kids, and Homer managed to get a good gift as he just gave Marge a charm for a charm bracelet he’d previously purchased, and that actually works for both of them. I think Ned’s there to have him ask Marge how she’s doing later, allowing Marge to show how upset she is and guilt her eavesdropping kids. That leads them to go looking for a real gift that would mean something to Marge, discovering she had a gray parrot as a child that she really loved until the bird was given away to someone from a rather poor town. Since those birds can live to be 80, Lisa figures they can get the bird back.
Hey, that’s a good gift! Sure, I don’t know why various adults decide to follow Bart’s orders and not leave town for family weddings, but this is a weird episode as it is. Especially since they do find Petey Parrot only to learn the bird was a destructive thing that Marge was afraid of.
So, they manage to get rid of the bird and even get Marge an actual bathrobe, with Bart and Lisa using the spy kit to fake a car accident so Marge can show it off for the other moms.
Wait, did Marge know the kids bought that kit with the money they were going to spend on her?
And why did Lisa go along with not buying the bathrobe the first time? That really feels more like a Bart thing.
This was a weird episode.