The Simpsons Folder : Production : Title Parodies – a Guide for the Perplexe
On [“P” stands for “plot”, “Y for “Why”]
- Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire “chestnuts roasting on an open fire, Jack Frost nipping at your nose,” is the first line of the carol “The Christmas Song”
- Bart the Genius – P is inspired by “Leave it to Beaver” 1958 ep ‘Part Time Genius”, in which Beaver, by switching names on his IQ test with the class nerd, scores highest in his class and his teacher, Mrs. Rayburn, decides & convinces his parents that he should go to a special school, where his abilities can be challenged.
- Homer’s Odyssey – The Greek poet/historian Homer’s book of the travels of Ulysses (“Odysseus” in Greek,) is “Homer’s Odyssey” Y: Homer has a journey of self-discovery too.
- There’s No Disgrace Like Home – “There’s no place like home,” chants Dorothy in Fleming’s 1939 film version of “The Wizard of Oz”
- Bart the General – Moaning Lisa – DaVinci’s painting “Mona Lisa”
- Call of the Simpsons – Jack London’s novel “Call of the Wild”, which features a ‘back-to-nature/primal state’ theme.
- The Tell-Tale Head – Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart”, in which severed body parts induce guilt in the criminal
- Life on the Fast Lane — phrase, meaning ‘living dangerously’, popularized by Eagles’ 1978 hit. “Lane” also refers to the area in which you bowl. [In the ep, French ‘Jacques’ was originally Swedish ‘Bjorn’, & script’s title was “Bjorn to be Wild” (phrase “born to be wild”: a troublemaker)]
- Homer’s Night Out – The phrase “night out” connotes wild carousing – referring to the Fisk bachelor party; P: Flintstones ep “The Girls Night Out”, in which Fred, who with Barney is treating the wives to a night at an amusement park, cuts a song at a recording booth as a souvenir but misplaces the record – its discovered by a group of teens who circulate it around town, and Fred is suddenly transformed into unwitting rock star.
- The Crepes of Wrath – Steinbeck’s novel, “The Grapes of Wrath”
- Krusty Gets Busted – ‘Busted’ = ‘arrested’
- Some Enchanted Evening – title of Rodgers & Hammerstein song from musical “South Pacific”
- Bart Gets An F
Simpson and Delilah – “Samson & Delilah” Bible story in the Book of Judges, in which the secret to Samson’s power was his hair – and then his secret was betrayed. Inspired by legalization of baldness treatments, including Minoxidil (parodied in ep a “Dimoxinil”)
- Treehouse of Horror – ’75 film anthology “Trilogy of Terror”; “Bad Dream House” – Barbie Dream House (toy), P: horror films “Poltergeist” and “The Amityville Horror”, “Hungry Are the Damned” – 1962 Hammer horror film “These Are the Damned”, P: short story by Damon Knight, then Twilight Zone ep: “To Serve Man” by Rod Serling, The Raven – directly adapts Poe’s poem “The Raven”.
- 2 Cars in Every Garage, 3 Eyes on Every Fish ‘ – President Hoover’s famous Depression-era campaign slogan/promise of “two cars in every garage, and a chicken in every pot.” Y; Electioneering on promises of prosperity P: ‘election’ section of film “Citizen Kane”
- Dancin’ Homer
- Dead Putting Society – Peter Weir’s film “Dead Poets’ Society”
- Bart vs. Thanksgiving
- Bart the Daredevil
- Itchy & Scratchy & Marge – P: inspired by Terry Rakolta, prominent tv (esp. Fox) protester
- Bart Gets Hit By A Car – P: Billy Wilder’s film “The Fortune Cookie”, which concerns a trumped-up personal-injury lawsuit
- One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish – Dr. Seuss’ “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”
- The Way We Was – novel & film “The Way We Were”, which told a youthful romance story via flashbacks
Homer vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment – “Thou shalt not steal” is the 8th Commandment in the Bible’s “Ten Commandments” given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai (They vary slightly in the 2 descriptions, found at Exodus 34:28, Deuteronomy 4:13)
- Principal Charming – fairy tale staple character “Prince Charming” Y: Skinner is Selma’s intended, and Patty’s surprise, suitor
Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? – name of the fictional film being produced in Preston Sturges’ 40s film comedy “Sullivan’s Travels”
- Bart’s Dog Gets An F – twist on the earlier ep “Bart Gets an F”
- Old Money – phrase, meaning “inherited wealth”
- Brush with Greatness – phrase Y: Pun of “brush”, phrase mean’s ‘chance encounter with renowned celebrity’, a la Marge w/ Ringo.
- Lisa’s Substitute – “My Substitute”, 90’s film concerning an affair between substitute teacher & male student
War of the Simpsons – DeVito’s film “War of the Roses” Y: about a feuding couple [Dan Castellaneta was featured in it]
Three Men and a Comic Book – 80s film “Three Men and a Baby” (remake of French film of same title) P: “Treasre of the Sierra Madre”
- Blood Feud – phrase, meaning ‘fight between families’
- Do The Bartman – 50s rock & pop songs introducing “the latest dance crazes sweeping the nation” were usually titled in this manner after the new dance move itself, ie: “Do the Twist”, “Do the Mashed Potato”, “Do the Hand Jive”, etc.
- Deep Deep Trouble
- Stark Raving Dad – phrase “stark raving mad” which means “insane”, like Homer’s handstamp says
- Mr. Lisa Goes to Washington – Capra’s 40s film “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” Y: involves pure-hearted newcomer to D.C. beating back corruption with speeches of simple wisdom
- When Flanders Failed – poem “In Flanders Field”, by Canadian poet John McCrae, an officer in World War I & the Boer Wars. A year into the latter war he published in Punch magazine, on December 8, 1915, the sole work by which he would be remembered.
- Bart the Murderer
- Homer Defined – “defined” connotes “discovers one’s true nature or calling through doing a significant act”; in the ep, its also a pun with the dictionary “definition”
- Like Father Like Clown – phrase “like father like son”, P: 20s film “The Jazz Singer” and its 70s remake, in which a Jewish son who has been disowned by his father for rejecting their family calling – a synagogue cantor – to become a popular entertainer, comes to reconcile with him.
- Treehouse of Horror II – Monkey’s Paw: 1902 short by W.W. Jacob’s, “The Monkey’s Paw”, Bart’s: Twilight Zone ep “It’s a Good Life” (it was remade in the TZ film too); Homer’s: novel & film “Frankenstein”, film “The Thing With Two Heads”
- Lisa’s Pony
- Saturdays of Thunder – ’90 film “Days of Thunder”, which was a race-car-track based drama
- Flaming Moe’s – “flaming”, before its present homosexual connotation, implied “the hot spot”, the incredibly trendy place to go, which “Moe’s” becomes in the ep, by offering its drink, the “Flaming Moe”. P: Moe’s morphs into “Cheers”, from the tv series, in Act 2.
- Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk – “Burns sells the plant” in German Y: he sells it to Germans. Inspired by recent sales of prominent landmark buildings to foreign corporations in Japan & Germany.
- I Married Marge – Popular horror/expolitation title from the 40s-60s was “I Married a ____”, ’50s tv series “I Married Joan”
- Radio Bart – Radio Marti, the US-originated broadcast into Cuba promoting democracy P: Wilder’s press-satire “Ace in the Hole”, which concerns the media-exaggerated reaction to a child trapped down a hole.
- Lisa the Greek – “Jimmy the Greek” the forcibly-retired CBS football prognosticator/odds maker Y: Lisa becomes a football prog. too.
- Homer Alone – 1990 Chris Columbus film “Home Alone”
- Bart the Lover
- Homer At The Bat – 20s epic poem “Casey at the Bat”, about a fictional New York minor-league baseball hero.
- Separate Vocations – phrase, “separate vacations” (which is exactly what it sounds like – it’s a commonly cited ‘secret to a successful marriage’)
- Dog of Death – the hype/promotionary phrase “of death” simply means “deadly”
- Colonel Homer – Col. Parker, Elvis’ all-controlling manager, who Homer emulates in the ep P: 80s film “Coal-Miner’s Daughter”
Black Widower – phrase, “Black Widow”, later a novel & film, meaning a woman who schemes to marry wealthy men intending to kill them for the inheritance, a la SSBob & Selma
- The Otto Show – phrase, an “auto show”
- Bart’s Friend Falls in Love
- Brother Can You Spare Two Dimes? – Depression-era song “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” which is a plea for a small handout for a panhandler who once ran a huge, successful company, written for a Broadway musical, “New Americana” by Gormey & Harburg, and popularized by Bing Crosby
- Kamp Krusty – Per Borscht-Belt comics, the comedy of the letter K (as expounded by Alan King, Milton Berle, Shelly Berman, etc.) is a rule which Krusty is known to follow; this is the first Krusty-centric ep to get the “K” treatment.
- A Streetcar Named Marge – Tennessee Williams’ play “A Streetcar named Desire”, which involves wife repressed by loutish husband, and which is performed in ep in a musical version, “Oh, Streetcar! (which is a reference to the 70s musical “Oh, Calcutta!”). [P: “Streetcar”, sort of, and Maggie’s P is film “Great Escape”]
- Homer the Heretic – a ‘heretic’ is one who rejects their religion, a la Homer
- Lisa the Beauty Queen – a “beauty queen’ is slang for a female pageant winner or contestant, which is ‘insulting’ because these pageants swear that beauty is but one factor of many decisive ones.
- Treehouse of Horror III – Clown Without Pity: 50s song, “Town Without Pity”, P: Twilight Zone ep “Living Doll”; King Homer: ’33 original “King Kong”, plot too; Dial “Z” for Zombie: Hitchcock’s “Dial “M” for Murder”, P: Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead”, and countless zombie flicks.
- Itchy & Scratchy: The Movie
- Marge Gets a Job – 30s serial film comedy “Blondie Gets a Job” (film series derived from comic strip “Blondie”)
New Kid on the Block – phrase (and name of 80s teen pop group,) which means ‘newest child moved into the neighborhood’, a la Laura Powers
- Mr. Plow
- Lisa’s First Word
- Homer’s Triple Bypass – an operation to replace 3 heart valves too congested to manage normal blood flow, which Homer undergoes
- Marge vs. the Monorail P: first 2 acts, the musical “The Music Man”, 3d is an ‘Irwin Allen’-style 70s disaster film.
- Selma’s Choice – 80’s film “Sophie’s Choice”, in which Sophie had to choose between children; in the ep, Selma decides whether she wants children.
- Brother from the Same Planet – 80s John Sayles film “Brother from Another Planet”
- I Love Lisa – 50s tv series “I Love Lucy”
- Duffless – Godard’s film “Breathless”
- Last Exit to Springfield – Hubert Selby Jr’s novel “Last Exit to Brooklyn”, in which one protagonist is a union organizer
- So It’s Come To This: A Simpsons Clip Show – phrase “so its come to this” means “we’ve arrived at the low point which we expected on this downward spiral, the _____”
- The Front – phrase, and the ’76 Martin Ritt comedy film, starring Woody Allen, regarding a “Front”. This McCarthy-era job was to take the writing credit, and a small fee, for writers who couldn’t risk taking credit because they were on the anti-Communist ‘blacklist’, a la Grampa’s role for Bart & Lisa’s writing. (The Writers Guild of America has been correcting these credits on older films in recent years to reverse the injustice)
- Whacking Day – titled after less-recognized, regional holidays, esp. Canada’s “Boxing Day”; inspired by Georgia’s regional “Rattler Roundup(s)”, which still go on.
- Marge In Chains – phrase, “in chains” means “imprisoned”. Inspired by the then-ascending rock band “Alice in Chains”
- Krusty Gets Kancelled – Comedy K’s (see “Kamp Krusty”)
- Homer’s Barbershop Quartet P: parodies the career of the Beatles
- Cape Feare – ’62 film “Cape Fear”, as well as the ’91 Scorsese remake. P: full parody of both films
- Rosebud – ‘Rosebud’ is the name of Kane’s ‘lost’ icon of childhood (his sled) in Welles’ film “Citizen Kane” Y: Burns’ quest for lost icon of childhood, Bobo, parallels Kane’s.
- Homer Goes to College – 1942 comedy “Blondie Goes to College”, 1952 film comedy (starring Ronald Reagan & a chimp) “Bonzo Goes to College”
- Marge on the Lam – phrase, “on the lam” means “on the run from the law.” [P: at end is Scott’s “Thelma & Louise”]
- Treehouse of Horror IV: (Set-up is parody of Serling’s 60s tv series “Night Gallery”): The Devil and Homer Simpson: “The Devil and Daniel Webster”, in plot, too; Nightmare at 5 ½ Feet: Twilight Zone ep “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet”, which is the same story set on a plane; Bart Simpson’s Dracula: Coppola’s “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”, and its source novel.
- Bart’s Inner Child – phrase, “inner child” is a psychotherapy term meaning, roughly, “one’s pure, youthful vitality & spirit” Y: Goodman counsels the citizens to ‘get in touch with’ theirs
- Boy Scoutz N the Hood – Jon Singleton’s 80s film “Boyz N the Hood”
- The Last Temptation of Homer – Nikos Kazantzakis novel & 80s Scorsese film adaptation “ The Last Temptation of Christ”
- $pringfield (or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling) – Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb”, and “Vega$” (90s tv series)
- Homer the Vigilante – P: Act 3 is film “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” chase.
- Homer and Apu
- Bart Gets Famous
- Lisa vs. Malibu Stacy – Inspired by controversial “Math is hard!” Barbie and ‘breakdancing seniors’ ad campaign.
- Deep Space Homer – tv series (& Star Trek spin-off) “Deep Space Nine”, P: novel & film “The Right Stuff”
- Homer Loves Flanders
- Bart Gets an Elephant
- Burns’ Heir
- Sweet Seymour Skinner’s Baadasssss Song – Melvin Van Peebles’ ’71 film “Sweet Sweetback’s Badasssss Song”
- The Boy Who Knew Too Much – Hitchcock’s 60s film “The Man Who Knew Too Much”, P inspired by the William Kennedy Smith rape trial
- Lady Bouvier’s Lover – D.H. Lawrence’s scandalous Victorian novel “Lady Chatterly’s Lover”
- Secrets of a Successful Marriage – 70s self-help book and lecture series of same name, now a cliched article-title in magazines
- Bart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad’s novel “Heart of Darkness” [P: Hitchcock’s “Rear Window”]
- Lisa’s Rival – Act 3 is Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart”
- Another Simpsons Clip Show – it is – the second one produced
- Itchy & Scratchy Land – Disneyland P: Crichton novel and 70s thriller adaptation “Westworld”
- Sideshow Bob Roberts – Tim Robbins’ prescient 1992 film “Bob Roberts”, which involves an illegally manipulative Republican candidate winning an election by grossly distorting his and his opponent’s records.
- Treehouse of Horror V : The Shinning – Kings novel “The Shining”, and Kubrick’s film version; Time and Punishment – Dostoevsky’s novel “Crime and Punishment”, P: Ray Bradbury’s story “A SOund of Thunder” (source of ‘if you go back in time, effecting change in the tiniest event will have a disastrous ripple effect’); Nightmare Cafeteria: P: Harry Harrison’s 1966 sci-fi novel “Make Room! Make Room!” and its 70s film adaptation “Soylent Green”.
- Bart’s Girlfriend
- Lisa on Ice – phrase “on ice” means “in a tough situation”, here its also a pun for her hockey talents
- Homer Badman – 1952 B-movie Western“Texas Badman”, and derived from a protest sign within the ep.
- Grampa vs. Sexual Inadequacy
- Fear of Flying – Erica Jong’s 1977 novel, which addresses childhood-encounter-induced gender-roles and repressed sexual urges in females, w/ analogies to ‘fears of flying’ from hip therapist; with the help of a therapist, Marge discovers that her actual fear of flying was induced at childhood by her repressed enconter with her father’s implied gender-role ‘confusion’.
- Homer the Great – Alexander the Great, and other revered historical persons who earned this honorific
- And Maggie Makes Three – closing lyric “…Just Mollie and me, and baby makes three” from 1923 George Whiting & Walter Donaldson Tin Pan Alley standard “My Blue Heaven”
- Bart’s Comet – Comets are typically named for the astronomer(s) that first note their existence and orbits, with or without the “ ’s” (Halley’s, Hale-Bopp, Tempel, Brooks, Schwassmann-Wachmann, etc.)
- Homie the Clown – American clowns, esp. local tv ‘personality’ clowns that were the imspiration for Krusty, typically had the uninspired format of “__-y the Clown”; “Homie” is a nickname Homer’s had previously; “Homie D. Clown” was a recurring character of Damon Wayans’ on Fox’s 1990-4 sketch show “In Living Color”
- Bart vs. Australia – P inspired by the story of Michael Fay, an American teen who was caned in the Phillippines in 1994 for vandalising cars.
- Homer vs. Patty & Selma
- A Star is Burns – Minelli’s 50s film (& 2 remakes) “A Star is Born”
- Lisa’s Wedding
- Two Dozen and One Greyhounds – Disney’s film “101 Dalmations”, source of the plot, too.
- The PTA Disbands
- ‘Round Springfield – 80s film “ ‘Round Midnight”, which involves the last dying days of an eldery black jazz musician
- The Springfield Connection – Friedkin’s 70s film “The French Connection”, which involves a maverick cop single-handedly taking on a sophisticated smuggling operation
- Lemon of Troy – Greek historical/mythological figure Helen of Troy. Trojan warriors able to enter city & rescue Helen by tricking city into accepting a gift – with them hidden inside. Springfieldians do likewise in plan to recue lemon tree from warring enemy Shelbyville.
- Who Shot Mr. Burns? (Part One) – episode “Who shot J.R., pt 1”, from 90s tv series “Dallas” Y: murderer-identity cliffhanger season-ending plot
- Who Shot Mr. Burns? (Part Two) – episode “Who shot J.R., pt 2”, from 90s tv series “Dallas” Y: murderer-identity cliffhanger conclusion plot
- Radioactive Man
- Home Sweet Home-Diddily-Dum-Doodily – phrase, “Home, Sweet Home”, in Ned-speak; the kids’ new home is the Flanders’
- Bart Sells His Soul
- Lisa the Vegetarian
- Treehouse of Horror VI – “Attack of the 50 ft. Eyesores” – 50s scifi film “Attack of the 50 ft Woman”; Nightmare on Evergreen Terrace – Craven’s “Nightmare on Elm Street”, also source of the plot; “Homer 3” – title-style after film “Alien 3” (‘3’ as ‘cubed’); plot is after “Twilight Zone” ep ‘Little Girl Lost”, in which a child enters the mysterious fourth dimension through a portal in her home – OFF being animated, they live in two dimensions, and Homer enters the mysterious ‘third dimension’ King-Size Homer – twist on THOH2’s segment “King Homer”
- Mother Simpson – inspired by a rash of surfacings by formerly on-the-run 60s radical-activist women.
- Sideshow Bob’s Last Gleaming – lyric from “The Star-spangled Banner”: “at the twilight’s last gleaming” which describes the sky view of explosions at the scene of the strike on a US military base during the War of 1812.
- The Simpsons 138th Episode Spectacular – satire of cliched tv series’ “very special” “milestone” episodes, which purport to ‘look back’ at the series, but are merely cheap clip shows.
- Marge Be Not Proud – John Donne’s turn-of-the-century poem “Death Be Not Proud”
- Two Bad Neighbors – derived from Bush protest sign in ep
- Team Homer – the standard way to “announce” a contestant group in a competition, in which each group has a single primary corporate sponsor (and these types of science and sports competitions are prevalent) is “Team [Sponsor’s name]”
Scenes from the Class Struggle in Springfield – 80s Paul Bartel film comedy “Scenes from the Class Struggle in Beverly Hills”, the film’s title is the subject
- Bart the Fink – 90s Coen Bros. Film “Barton Fink”
- Lisa the Iconoclast – definition: “one who struggles to undermine the reverence for a common inspirational symbol”
- Homer the Smithers – Smithers’ name is used here as a ‘role’ or profession; Homer takes his job.
- A Fish Called Selma – 80s Chales Crichton (& Cleese & Palin) comedy “A Fish Called Wanda”
- The Day the Violence Died – phrase, “The Day the Music Died” (ref. to February 3, 1959, the day of the single plane crash killing rockers Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens & the Big Bopper) as labelled in Don McLean’s hit “American Pie”
- Bart on the Road – Kerouac’s 50s novel “On the Road”, which chronicles youthful rebellious road trips
- 22 Short Films About Springfield – 90s ‘documentary’ “Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould” Y: Relates life of pianist via multiplefractured & non-linear scenarios
- Raging Abe Simpson and His Grumbling Grandson in: “The Curse of the Flying Hellfish” – title parodies style of film adventure/cliffhanger serials of the 30s & 40s.
- Much Apu About Nothing – Shakespeare’s comedy “Much Ado About Nothing”
- Homerpalooza – Perry Farrell’s touring music festival of the 90s, “Lollapalooza”
- Summer of 4 Ft. 2 – Robert Mulligan’s 1971 comng-of-age film “Summer of ‘42”, which relates a chilhood life-changing summer experience.
- Treehouse of Horror VII – The Thing and I: musical “The King and I”, P: Cronenberg’s “Sisters”; The Genesis Tub: “The Genesis Bomb” was a device in the films Star Trek II & III, whose detonation had the effect of beginning the development of life, P is from the Twilight Zone 1962 ep “The Little People”, by Rod Serling, in which 3 astronauts stumble upon a tiny civilization; Citizen Kang: “Citizen Kane”, which features an election and campaign. You Only Move Twice – Fleming’s James Bond novel “You Only Live Twice” Y: Show is a different angle on a typical Bond plot.
- The Homer They Fall – phrase, “The bigger they are, the harder they fall”, a cliché used to reassure the smaller fighter. Inspired by Buster Douglas’ “come-from-nowhere” knock-out of Mike Tyson after many ko’s of softer, ‘patsy’ fighters, as well as the film “Rocky”.
- Burns, Baby Burns-“Burn, baby, burn”: Stokely Carmichael, ’67 protest chant
- Bart After Dark – “Playboy After Dark”, Hugh Hefner’s long-running nighttime adult, burlesque/nightclubby pay-tv show.
- A Milhouse Divided – phrase, Abe Lincoln (re: the US Civil War): “A house divided against itself cannot stand,” derived from the New Testament, Matthew 12:25, “Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, ‘Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.'”
- Lisa’s Date with Density – phrase, “a date with destiny”
- Hurricane Neddy – Hurricanes are given names, and until 1980, they were all strictly female names (a reference to Ned’s daintiness)
- El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer – trans: “Our Homer’s Mysterious Voyage”, in Spanish in tribute to hispanic writer of mysticism Carlos Castaneda, whose writings inspired Homer’s hallucinogenic trip-out and inner-spiritual-quest plot
- The Springfield Files – co-Fox tv series “The X-Files”, the ep is practically a cross-over
- The Twisted World of Marge Simpson – phrase “the twisted world of _______” is a cliche used most frequently in ‘wacky’ humor/cartoon collections and anthologies, i.e. Mad’s “The twisted World of Don Martin” and “The Twisted World of Felix the Cat” (here, ‘twisted’ refers to pretzels)
- Mountain of Madness – H.P. Lovecraft 1931 horror story title, “At the Mountain of Madness”
- Simpsoncalifragilisticexpiala(Annoyed Grunt)cious – parody of “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”, a song in Disney’s “Mary Poppins”, the source of the plot; “annoyed grunt” is how “d’oh” is indicated in scripts.
- The Itchy & Scratchy & Poochie Show – name of the ‘new version’ of the I&S toon in the ep.
- Homer’s Phobia – pun on word “homophobia”, or, fear of homosexuals and homosexuality.
- The Brother from Another Series – 80s John Sayles film “Brother from the Another Planet”; refers to the fact that David Hyde Pierce, who play’s SSBob’s brother Cecil, also plays Niles, Frasier Crane’s younger brother on the tv series “Frasier”. (Kelsey Grammer plays SSBob and Frasier Crane.)
- My Sister, My Sitter – Isaac Beshevis Singer short story “My Sister, My Sister”
- Homer vs. the Eighteenth Amendment – Amendment to the US Constitution prohibiting alcohol, soon repealed by 19th, just like Prohibition in Springfield
- Grade School Confidential – 1958 film, “High School Confidential”
- The Canine Mutiny – Wouk’s novel “The Caine Mutiny” and film version.
- The Old Man and the Lisa – Hemingway novel “The Old Man and the Sea”
- In Marge We Trust – phrase on US currency, “In God We Trust” Y: plot involves Marge’s advice replacing that of religious advisors
- Homer’s Enemy
- The Simpsons Spinoff Showcase – the “Spinners’ Showcase” is one contest in the game show “The Price Is Right” (iirc – it may be another game show); a ‘spinoff’ is the showbiz term for a series derived from an element of an existing series.
- The Secret War of Lisa Simpson – 1968 film comedy (w/ Paul Newman) “The Secret War of Harry Frigg”, which involves intrigue on a military base (during a war, however). P: Shannon Faulkner, the first girl to enroll at VMI.
- The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson – parodies the legal title of a New York City criminal complaint and charge against an individual.
- The Principal and the Pauper – Mark Twain’s fable “The Prince and the Pauper”, whose plot hinges on an intentional identity switcheroo.
- Lisa’s Sax
- Treehouse of Horror VIII : The Homega Man (the ‘o’ is an Omega character): “The Omega Man (ditto)”, the 70s sci-fi film that also gives the plot; Fly vs. Fly: Mad magazine’s staple feature cartoon “Spy vs. Spy”, plot is from the 50s horror “The Fly” and its 80s Cronenberg remake; Easy Bake Coven: Hasbro’s classic cooking-for-kids toy “Easy-Bake Oven”, plot is inspired by the real New England witch trials of the 1600s.
- The Cartridge Family – 70s tv series “The Partridge Family”; in firearms terms, a “cartridge”, also called a “round”, is the entire package made up of a case, primer, powder, and bullet.
- Bart Star – NFL football player Bart Starr, Bart is reluctantly made the star of the team.
- The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons – stageplay and 1947 thiller adaptation “The Two Mrs. Carrolls”
- Lisa the Skeptic
- Realty Bites – 90s Ben Stiller film comedy “Reality Bites”
- Miracle on Evergreen Terrace – 40s classic Christmas film “Miracle on 34th Street”
- All Singing, All Dancing
- Bart Carny – comic actor Art Carny (now deceased) (a ‘carny’ is a carnival worker).
- The Joy of Sect – self-help book/manual “The Joy of Sex”
- Simpson Tide – 90s Tony Scott film “Crimson Tide”, which takes place on US Navy submarine, in which a lower-rank office rakes the command in a tense situation with potential combat.
- The Last Temptation of Krust – Nikos Kazantzakis novel & 80s Scorsese film adaptation “The Last Temptation of Christ”
- Das Bus – German 80s film “Das Boot” (trans: “The Boat”) Y: story involves a submarine & crew who become lost & adrift in the ocean, P: “Lord of the Flies”
- Weekend at Burnsie’s – 1. 80s film (& sequel) “Weekend at Bernies”, which features 2 guys animating their boss’ corpse, and gives the ep its 3rd act; 2. “burnsies’ is antiquated slang for joints and/or pot smokers.
- Gump Roast – 1. Phrase “rump roast” , the cut of beef from the cow’s ass; 2. Term “roast”, a ceremony honoring someone by seating them on a dais and having his friends humorously sling insults at him, which gives the ep its Act 2&3 setting; and 3. The 90s film “Forrest Gump”, which is parodied in Act 1.
- I Am Furious (Yellow) – the 1967 Swedish film “I Am Curious (Yellow)”, and, to a lesser extent, its ‘sister’ film “I Am Curious (Blue)”. “Yellow’s” frank depiction of sexuality caused a mini-scandal and incited protests when it was distributed without a self-imposed “X” rating.
- The Sweetest Apu – phrase “the sweetest taboo,” which usually connotes adultery, which is the focus of the ep.
Little Girl in the Big Ten – 1970s erotic film “Little Girl in the Big Tease”, and the “Big Ten” is a sports league comprised of 10 colleges (since 1990, 11 colleges)
- The Frying Game – 30s ‘torch’song “The Crying Game”, and slang “to fry”, which is execution by electrocution, which is Homer’s sentence in the ep.
- Papa’s Got a Brand New Badge – James Brown’s signature 60s funk hit “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag”
- Lisa the Simpson – concerns Lisa’s genetic attributes as a “Simpson”, in a geneological sense
- Dumbbell Indemnity – Cain novel & film noir adaptation “Double Indemnity” , whose central murder involves an insurance rip-off scheme.
- This Little Wiggy – nursery rhyme “This Little Piggy”
- The Trouble with Trillions – 60s “Star Trek” episode “The Trouble with Tribbles”
- Girly Edition – phrase “early edition”, a term for the morning version of the daily newspaper when there is also an updated afternoon version produced.
- Trash of the Titans – ‘hype’ phrase for a high ranking showdown (and title of 80s mythological fantasy film) “Clash of the Titans”
King of the Hill – phrase for “person at the top level’; and name of the only other successful toon on FoxLost Our Lisa – phrase “Lost Our Lease”, common sign on stores with sales specials – means whole store must vacate location, so all items must desperately be sold. Natural Born Kissers – 90s Oliver Stone film (written by Tarantino) “Natural Born Killers” Y: also involves a couple in love and on the run from thelaw.
- Lard of the Dance – 90s travelling Irish-dance stage show “Lord of the Dance”, refers to the convergence of the plot points of congealed grease (lard) at the school dance.
- The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace – nickname for Thomas Edison after his home/laboratory’s address: “The Wizard of Menlo Park” Y: ep sees Homer emulate Edison.
- Bart the Mother – ep of tv series “The Andy Griffith Show”, “Opey the Mother” Y: Plot also involves boy killing bird, hatching its eggs, and learning life lessons from the event.
- Treehouse of Horror IX: “Hell Toupee” – phrase “Hell to pay” (costly consequences), a toupee is a hairpiece; The Terror of Tiny Toon: Newfield’s 1938 midget Western “The Terror of Tiny Town”, plot is from 90s fantasy film “Stay Tuned”; Starship Poopers: Heinlen’s 50s sci-fi novel “Starship Troopers”, involving alien battle, ‘pooper’ implies an infant.
- When You Dish Upon a Star – song from Disney’s “Pinocchio”: “When You Wish Upon a Star” (‘dish’ is slang for gossip)
- D’oh-in In the Wind – Bob Dylan’s song “Blowin’ in the Wind”, which became a hippie anthem.
- Lisa Gets an “A” – twist on season 1’s “Bart Gets an ‘F’”Homer Simpson in: “Kidney Trouble” – parodies style of cartoon trailers of the 30s & 40s.
- Mayored to the Mob – 90s Demme film comedy “Married to the Mob”, which involves follies with the Mafia
- Viva Ned Flanders – 60s Elvis Presley musical (and its title song) “Viva Las Vegas” Y: Flanders & Homer go to Las Vegas
Wild Barts Can’t Be Broken – 70s film drama “Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken”
- Sunday, Cruddy Sunday – “Bloody Sunday is the ‘nickname’ for the January 30, 1972British Army killing of 14 Irish protesters, “Snday, Bloody Sunday” was, first the, the title of the 1971 Schlesinger film version of the event, and then the title of the 1980 U2 song it inspired; the Super Bowl is held on Sundays.
- Homer to the Max – phrase “to the max” is Valley-girl slang for “extremely”, in the ep, Homer changes his name to “Max”; P was inspired by the lawsuit of a real “George Costanza” on the producers of “Seinfeld”.
- I’m With Cupid – phrase on very common ’gag’ T-shirts “I’m With Stupid” (there’s a big arrow underneath pointing to the person standing next to the wearer of the shirt.); Cupid is the mascot seraph of Valentine’s Day.
Marge Simpson in: “Screaming Yellow Honkers” – parodies style of cartoon trailers of the 30s & 40s; “Screaming Yellow Zonkers” is a long-time popular brand of candied popcorn snack.
- Make Room for Lisa – 1953-7 tv series “Make Room for Daddy” (later entitled “The Danny Thomas Show” in final 2 seasons & syndication)
- Maximum Homerdrive – Stephen King short horror story (& film adaptation) “Maximum Overdrive”, which involves big-rig trucks that develop sentience [and featured Yeardley Smith]
- Simpsons Bible Stories – From the books of: Genesis (Garden of Eden, fall of Man & exile), Exodous (Moses & the 10 plagues, parting of the Red Sea), Prophets (King Solomon), Kings (David & Goliath), and Revelations (4 Horsemen, Apocalypse).
- Mom and Pop Art – phrase “Pop Art”: the 20th Century artistic movement that involved ‘found’ art and art derived from mass-marketed popularly-distributed advertising and kitsch. Y: it fairly describes Homer’s efforts and many of the artists’ works’ in the episode
- The Old Man and The “C” Student – Hemingway novel “The Old Man and the Sea”
- Monty Can’t Buy Me Love – phrase “money can’t buy love,” meaning “there are limits to what material wealth can achieve”; similar to Beatles’ “Can’t Buy Me Love” and Elton John’s “Momma Can’t Buy You Love” by Cook & Bell
- They Saved Lisa’s Brain – Bradley’s 1968 sci-fi/horror film, “They Saved Hitler’s Brain”
30 Minutes to Tokyo – the 1944 World War II film “30 Seconds Over Tokyo” (which refers to the duration of the atomic bombing flight missions closing WWII, and 30 minutes is the duration of an episode broadcast, with commercials.)
- Beyond Blunderdome – 80s sci-fi sequel “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” Y: Mel Gibson guest-stars, and his “Mad Max” character cameos.
- Brother’s Little Helper – phrase “Mothers Little Helper”, ‘pep’ pills marketed to 50s-60s US housewives; Pharmaceutical companies sold these heavily-addictive methamphetamines, marketed as harmless chemical assistance with this phrase/nickname, to busy moms & wives to assist them in getting all of their very-important cleaning & chores done; P inspired by similar increased marketing & use of “Ritalin” & other drugs to treat “Attention Deficit Disorder” in children, due to loosened regulations, a la Bart & the “Focusin.”
- Guess Who’s Coming to Criticize Dinner? – 60s film comedy “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?”
- Treehouse of Horror X – I Know What You Diddly-Iddly-Did: 00s horror “I Know What You Did Last Summer”, plot is that film and and werewolf stories; Desperately Seeking Xena: 80s comedy film “Desperately Seeking Susan”, which, like Xena, inspires lesbian fascination, segment is a general ‘comic book superheroes’ parody, but “Clobber Girl” is a play on “Clabber Girl” Baking Powder, one of the oldest brands and mascots in the US (since ’23); Life’s a Glitch, Then You Die: phrase “life’s a bitch, then you die.” Plot was inspired by the Y2K-bug scare of 12/31/99.
- E-I-E-I-(Annoyed Grunt) – chorus of nursery rhyme “Old MacDonald Had a Farm”: “e-I-e-I-o”, in the ep Homer has a farm; (Annoyed Grunt) indicates “D’oh” on scripts.
- Hello Gutter, Hello Fadder – Allan Sherman’s 50s novelty song “Hello Mudder, Hello Fadder”
- Eight Misbehavin’ – 40s musical “Ain’t Misbehaiving”
- Take My Wife, Sleaze – Henny Youngman now-cliched joke “Take my wife – please!”
- Grift of the Magi – O. Henry Xmas-themed short story “Gift of the Magi”, which refers to the visitation to the infant Jesus’ manger by the 3 wise men who followed the Star of Bethlehem to it – the gifts were gold, frankincense and myrrh; a “grift” is a scam
- Little Big Mom – 70s Dustin Hoffman film drama “Little Big Man” Faith Off – phrase “face off” (showdown), also, the John Woo film “Face/Off” had jst been released.
- The Mansion Family – phrase “The Manson Family”, the late-60s loose collection of teens that lived with their leader, Chales Manson, and assissted him in his Hollywood mass murder in 1968.
- Saddlesore Galactica – the late 70s-early 80s sci-fi tv series “Battlestar Galactica”
- Alone Again, Natura-Diddly – 70s sad song “Alone Again, Naturally”, by Gilbert O’Sullivan, about the death of his girlfriend
- Missionary: Impossible – the 60s spy tv series “Mission: Impossible”
- Pygmoelian – the George Bernard Shaw novel “Pygmalion” in which a lower-class Cockney girl is transformed into a refined upper-class debutante, a la Moe Szyzlak the Bartender becoming Moe St. Clair, the glamourous soap star. (Novel was also adapted into the musical “My Fair Lady”)
- Bart to the Future – the 80s Zemeckis film (& 2 sequels) “Back to the Future” (“Pt. 2” contains the “flash-forward”, a la the ep.)
- Days of Wine and D’oh’ses – 60s film “Days of Wine and Roses”, in which Jack Lemmon & Lee Grant play a couple who sink into a deep and long alchoholic haze, and resolve to try to quit drinking, a la Barney
Kill the Alligator and Run – phrase “take the money and run’, referring to an impulse/opportunity-crime, phrase popularized as title of Woody Allen’s 1969 directorial debut, and then the Steve Miller Band’s 1976 hit.
- Last Tap Dance in Springfield – 1973 Bertolucci film “Last Tango in Paris“
- It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Marge – Stanley Kramer’s 60s film comedy classic “It’’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”, P: 90s thriller “The Hand that Rocks the Cradle”, as Selma notes in the ep.
- Behind the Laughter – late 90s and current VH1 tv series of rock-and-rollers’ warts-and-all biograpies “Behind the Music”, which gave this ep its point-of-view, format and narrator
- Treehouse of Horror XI – “Ggghost Ddddad” -80s Bill Cosby fim ‘comedy’ “Ghost Dad” (P is generic ‘spirit wanders as a ghost until he can earn his way into heaven”); “Scary Tales Can Come True” – opening line of 50s song “Young At Heart”: “Fairy tales can come true…it can happen to you…” ; P contains elements of the fairy tales ‘Hansel & Gretel’, ‘Rapunzel’, Goldilocks & the 3 bears,” “3 Billy-goats’ Gruff” and the Brady Bunch episode “The not-so-ugly Duckling”; Day of the Dolphins – 70s fantasy film “Day of the Dolphin”, which is also the source of the plot (except that they’re the heroes).
- A Tale of Two Springfields Dickens’ novel “A Tale of Two Cities”
- Insane Clown Poppy – novelty rap act “Insane Clown Posse”, inspired by the discovery of grown given-up-for-adoption offspring by David Crosby & Joni Mitchell (separately).
- Lisa the Tree Hugger – a “tree hugger” is a derisive nickname for a forest preservationist, or, generally, a liberal activist P: the true story of Julia “Butterfly” Hilll, who lived in a historicRedwood tree from 12/97- 12/99 to prevent it from being chopped down
- Homer vs. Dignity – Plot is based on the Terry Southern 60s novel and film “The Magic Christian”
- The Computer Wore Menace Shoes – 1970s Disney live-action film comedy(starring Kurt Russell) “The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes” [Dan Castellaneta was featured in the 90s tv remake.] Plot is firmly rooted in cult UK tv series “The Prisoner”
- The Great Money Caper – The 80s childrens’ film “The Great Muppet Caper”
- Skinner’s Sense of Snow – 90s mystery film “Smilla’s Sense of Snow”
- HOMR – Charly (1970’s movie) It inspired the plot of this episode, the ‘R’ is backwards, and drops an ‘e’ from the protagonist’s name “Charlie”, in its title as well (The movie is adapted from the novel ‘Flowers for Algernon’, in which a mentally-challenged man is transformed into a super-genious…temporarily.)
- Pokey Mom – Japanese children’s cartoon (also a US craze) “Pokemon” (The “Pokey” is an old term for prison)
- Worst Episode Ever – Comic Book Guy’s catch-phrase, used to title an ep that focuses on him
- Tennis the Menace – Ketchem’s 60s and current comic strip “Dennis the Menace”
- Day of the Jackanapes – Forsythe’s novel (and 70s film adaptation) “Day of the Jackal”, which involves an assassination attempt, and much from novel and film “The Manchurian Candidate”, which features a brainwashed assassin.
- New Kids on the Blecch This title was used (in episode 179) by Alfred E. Newman as the title of a Mad Magazine piece they were working on in the back office when Bart catches a glimpse; parodies boy-band “New Kids On The Block”, in an ep that concerns the boy-band trend and a return to the Mad offices.
- Hungry, Hungry Homer – Parker Brothers’ board game “Hungry, Hungry Hippos”
- Bye Bye Nerdie – 60s musical “Bye, Bye Birdie”
- Simpson Safari – 60s Beach Boys’ song “Surfin’ Safari”
- Trilogy of Error – ’75 horror anthology film “Trilogy of Terror”, plot inspired by 00s films “Go” & “Run Lola Run”
- I’m Goin’ to Praiseland – Disney’s 90s advertising slogan “I’m going to Disneyland!”
- Children of a Lesser Clod – 80s film drama “Children of a Lesser God”
- Simpsons Tall Tales – “Tall Tales” are stories of the US South and West’s development, about mostly-fictional heroes whose feats are acknowledged as comically exaggerated (In the ep, they’re Paul Bunyan, Johnny Appleseed, and Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer (which are techinically not Tall Tales, but stories by Mark Twain, as Lisa notes in the ep).
- Treehouse of Horror XII – Hex in the City: 98-04 HBO series “Sex in the City”, P is generic “Gypsy curse/touch of death”; House of Whacks: 40s horror film *“House of Wax”, (a ‘whack’ is slang for a murder,) plot is from 70s sci-fi novel & film “Demon Seed”; “Wiz Kids”: phrase “whiz kid”, meaning very precocious child, “Wiz” is slang for ‘wizard’, a la “The Wiz’, the 60s soul-music adaptation of “Wizard of Oz”, P is derived from Rowling’s “Harry Potter” book series.
- The Parent Rap – 60s Disney live-action fim “The Parent Trap”, a ‘rap’ is slang for a record of conviction in the legal system. Inspired by an actual US court decision tethering a father to child.
- Homer the Moe – treats the name “Moe” as a “role”, a la “Homer the Smithers”
- A Hunka Hunka Burns in Love – last line and coda of 60s Elvis song “Burning Love”: “I’m just a hunk-a hunk-a burning love”
- The Blunder Years – 80s tv series “The Wonder Years”, which is formatted as a childhood flashback, which this ep contains.
- She of Little Faith – quotation of Jesus, “Ye of Little Faith”, from Matthew 8:25, ‘And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, o ye of little faith?”.
- Brawl in the Family – phrase, and 70s tv series, “All in the Family”
- Sweets and Sour Marge – phrase “Sweet and Sour”, for a primarily Asian flavor/preparation
- Jaws Wired Shut – 90s Kubrick film “Eyes Wide Shut”
- Half Decent Proposal – 90s film “Indecent Proposal”, in which a financially-strapped man “rents” out his wife for the evening to a wealthy single man who is smitten with her, and regrets it.
- The Bart Wants What it Wants – quotation “The heart wants what it wants”. This was Woody Allen’s infamous response to a question, during the scandal over his romance with his longtime girlfriend Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter Soon-Yi, why he fell for the one woman that might be thought “inappropriate” for him
- The Lastest Gun in the West – phrase “The fastest gun in the West,” a clichéd boast made by quick-draw gunslingers.
- The Old Man and the Key – Hemingway novel “The Old Man and the Sea”
- Tales from the Public Domain – They are all stories in the public domain, legally speaking (that is, the copyright protections for authors & owners, if any, have expired, and anyone may freely use the stories, characters, or text.
- Blame it On Lisa – the 80s comedy film “Blame It On Rio,” in which Michael Caine & Joseph Bologna take their families to Rio de Janero, Brazil, with disasterous conseqesnces.
- Treehouse of Horror XIII: Send in the Clones – 40s Sondheim torch song “Send in the Clowns”, The Fright to Creep and Scare Harms – phrase derived from the opening of the US Constitution’s Bill of Rights’ 2nd Amendment: “The right to keep and bear arms…”, the segment, like the Amendment, concerns gun use and rights; The Island of Dr. Hibbert – HG Wells’ horror novel “The Island of Dr. Moreau”, which gives the segment its plot.
- How I Spent My Strummer Vacation – phrase “How I Spent My Summer Vacation”, which is the cliched subject of the “first essay assignment of the school year.”
- Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade
- Large Marge – name of character in 80s film comedy ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure’ (which was co-written by Phil Hartman!)
- Helter Shelter – phrase “helter skelter’, which means ‘chaos’. The phrase was utilized by John Lennon as the title of a ‘White Album’ song, and it became associated with Chales Manson after he scrawled it on a wall at the site of his mass-murder – he explained that he was urged to the crime by mysterious voices in the Beatles’ song.
- The Great Louse Detective – Disney’s 1986 animated film “The Great Mouse Detective” (an adaptation of the children’s book “Basil of Baker Street”.)
- Special Edna – phrase “Special Ed”, which is slang for “Special Education”, which is a euphemism for “class structures with extra- and individualized-attention for students with learning disabilities.”
- The Dad Who Knew Too Little – Hitchcock’s 60s film “The Man Who Knew Too Much”
- Strong Arms of the Ma – phrase “The Long Arm of the Law”
- Pray Anything – Cameron Crowe’s 80s teen romance film “Say Anything”
- Barting Over – phrase “starting over”, which describes Bart’s ‘beginning a new life’ in the ep; poss. a reference to James L. Brooks’ first feature-film script of that name.
- I’m Spelling As Fast As I Can – 70s film melodrama “I’m Dancing As Fast As I Can”
- A Star is Born Again – Minelli’s 50s film (& 2 remakes) “A Star is Born” (‘born-again’ is a term used by evangelical Christians to describe themselves as having undergone a ‘spritual rebirth’ after accepting Christ.
- Mr. Spritz Goes to Washington – 40s Capra film “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”, which involves a newly elected Congressman going to Washington D.C. and learning to use the bureaucratic system.
- C.E.D’oh – corporate term “C.E.O.”, which stands for “Chief Executive Officer”, a title Homer assumes at the plant.
‘Scuse Me While I Miss the Sky – last line of the chorus of Jimi Hendrix’s 60s song “Purple Haze”, “’Scuse me / while I kiss the sky.”
- Three Gays of the Condo – Fredrick Forsythe’s spy novel (and film adaptation) “Three Days of the Condor”
- Dude, Where’s My Ranch? – 00s film ‘comedy’ “Dude, Where’s My Car?”; and term “Dude Ranch”, a ranch featuring comfortable accommodations from which an ‘easterner’ could experience the wonders of the US West – they typically offer a variety of activities such as horseback riding, fishing, river rafting, swimming pools, children’s programs, cattle drives, cookouts, line dancing, and relaxing close to nature.
- Old Yeller Belly – 1957 novel by Fred Gibson (and Disney live-action film adaptation that year,) “Old Yeller”, which concerns a family dog proving his fierce protectiveness of them; the common “Western” mispronunciation of the word “Yellow” is “Yeller”; and the term “Yellow Belly” is Western slang for a coward.
- Brake My Wife, Please – Henny Youngman now-cliched joke “Take my wife – please!”
- The Bart of War – the ancient “manual for the successful life of a warrior” by Sun Tzu, “The Art of War”
- Moe Baby Blues – 80s Spike Lee film “Mo’ Better Blues”
- THOH 14: Reaper Madness – the documentary “Reefer Madness”, (about marijuana), and “Reaper” indicates “The Grim Reaper”, another name for the figure “Death”; P is Russian folktale of man who defeats and becomes Death, expanded upon in Piers Anthony ’83 fantasy novel “On a Pale Horse”, in which Zane kills and becomes Death, but is tricked into having his love, Luna, on his list; Frinkenstein – Mary Shelley’s horror novel “Frankenstein”, in title and plot; Stop the World… I want to Goof Off! – the 60s musical “Stop the World… I Want to Get Off!!”, plot is from Twilight Zone 1963 ep “A Kind of Stopwatch”, written by Rod Serling, but based on an unpublished story by Michael D. Rosenthal, in which a talkative man acquires a stopwatch with the power to halt all other action in the world. The plot has been re-used and adapted in countless other forums and media, i.e the recent kidflick “Clockstoppers”
- My Mother the Carjacker – 60s tv series “My Mother the Car” Y: Homer’s last memory of his mom would be her using a taser to carjack (commadeer a vehicle by force) the prison bus from him.
- The President Wore Pearls – general parody of b-movie titles, i.e The Stranger Wore a Gun”, “The Devil Wore a Skirt”, “The Killer Wore a Badge”, “The Gambler Wore a Gun”, or the ninja film “The Bride Wore White”, and there is a 1972 play “The President Wore Pink”; P: the musical “Evita”, based on the life of Evita Peron.
- The Fat and the Furriest – phrase, “the Fast and the Furious”, a cliched term to describe car racers (IIRC, from a Truman Capote article. P: loosely after the Canadian documentary “Project Grizzly”
- The Regina Monologues – the late-90s stage show “The Vagina Monologues”; “Regina” is Latin for female sovereign or queen; Homer has 2 monologues before her Majesty.
- Today, I Am a Clown – phrase “Today, I am a man,” a cliched phrase from the Americanized Bar-Mitzvah ceremony, which marks the passage into Jewish adulthood; the plot concerns Krusty’s Bar-Mitzvah.
- ‘Tis the Fifteenth Season – title of the Chrismas carol “’Tis the Season (to be Jolly)”, for yet another Christmas episode
Marge vs. Singles, Seniors, Childless Couples, and Teens, and Gays – the name of the political group in the ep, the members of which don’t have children.
- I, (annoyed grunt)-bot – Asimov’s 50s sci-fi novel “I, Robot”; “(annoyed grunt)” indicates “D’oh!” in scripts P: the plot concerns building a robot, and the “3 Laws of Robotics”, which Asimove first set down in this book.
- Diatribe of a Mad Housewife – 70s film drama “Diary of a Mad Housewife”, a ‘diatribe’ is a long written rant.
- Margical History Tour – The Beatles’ 1968 tv special, and it soundtrack release (with not-available-elsewhere tunes,) “Magical Mystery Tour”, it the ep, 3 historical figures are Simpsonized by Marge: Homer as Henry VIII, Bart as Mozart, and Lisa as Sacajewea.
- Milhouse doesn’t Live Here Anymore – 70s Scorcese drama “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore”
Smart and Smarter – parody of the 90’s Jim Carrey/Jeff Daniels comedy “Dumb and Dumber”, referring to the IQ ratings of the OFF sisters.
- The Ziff Who Came to Dinner – play & film “The Man Who Came to Dinner”, about a guest who has an accident, and manipulates his hosts while extending his stay.
Co-dependant’s Day – “Independance Day”, the July 4 holiday; also the name of a 90’s crappy Sci-Fi movie (whose sequel’s trailer 1st aired 9 months ago); a “co-dependant” is a substance-abuse-treatment term for a spouse/partner that condones or encourages the abuse.
- The Wandering Juvie – the legend “The Wandering Jew”, which is a story dating from the Middle Ages of an eldery Jew who cursed Jesus while he was on the Via Dolorossa, and was in turn destined to wander the earth shunned forever; it was a church-generated anti-semitic justification for a people scattered worldwide with no homeland.
My Big Fat Geek Wedding – the 00s comedy “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”, the marriage-action takes place at a Sci-Fi Convention w/ CBG.
- Catch ‘Em If You Can – common phrase “Catch Me If You Can”, a children’s taunt to incite another to chase, originating in the children’s story “The Gingerbread Man” (It’s the way the GB teased the folks chasing him.) The phrase was also a ’80 song title by Eric Clapton, and, most recently, the title of the ’00 autobio of on-the-run con man Frank Abagnale Jr, and its ’02 Spielberg film adaptation.
- The Way We Weren’t – novel & film “The Way We Were”, which told a youthful romance story via flashbacks
- Simple Simpson – the nursery rhyme “Simple Simon” (“Simple Simon met a pie-man, going to the fair…)
- Bart-Mangled Banner – the US national anthem “The Star-Spangled Banner”, ref. to the US flag. Lisa used this exact term in “B v. L v. 3rd Grade”
- Fraudcast News – James L. Brooks’ film “Broadcast News”
- TOH15 – “Four Beheadings and a Funeral”/play on “Four Weddings and a Funeral”, Newell’s ’94 film; P is a satire of A.C. Doyle’s “Sherlock Holmes” stories, and historical tales of ‘Jack the Ripper’; “The Ned Zone”/Play on Stephen King’s novel “The Dead Zone”, also the source of the P; “In the Belly of the Boss”/play on the cliche “in the belly of the beast”, a phrase that means “at the center/source of the very bad problem”, P: film “Fantastic Voyage”
- All’s Fair in Oven War – phrase “All’s fair in love & war”, means ‘rules of fair play do not apply in love or war – cheating is justified’. 1st appeared in John Lyly’s ‘Euphues’ (1578).
- Sleeping with the Enemy – punchline to old joke: “The war of the sexes is the only one in which we’re sleeping with the enemy.”
- She Used to Be My Girl – Chorus of the 70’s soul hit by the O’Jays “Use ta Be My Girl”.
- Fat Man and Little Boy – these were the nicknames of the first US Atomic bombs used in combat, developed in the Manhattan Project for use in WWII. Little Boy was used 1st, a 10′ long, 9,000 lbs explosion-type uranium bomb, dropped on Hiroshima. Fat Man (named after Churchill) was used 2nd, a 12′, 10,000 lbs implosion-type plutonium bomb, dropped on Nagasaki.
- Midnight Rx – Play on the ’70s Parker film “Midnight Express” (“Rx” is ‘pronounced’), the basis of which is the consequences of smuggling drugs over an international border. Rx is the term for ‘prescription is:’ (P: the current US popularity of smuggling cheaper prescription drugs in from Canada)
- Mommy Beerest – The OFF Mommy is serving drinks at a bar. Play on “Mommie Dearest”, the autobiography (and film adaptation) of actress Joan Crawford’s daughter, Christina, who called her this.
Homer and Ned’s Hail Mary Pass – a ‘hail Mary pass’ is a last-second desperate attempt to make a long pass to win a football game.
- Pranksta Rap – play on the music genre “gangsta rap”
- There’s Something About Marrying – the Farrelly Bros’ ’98 “There’s Something About Mary”
- On A Clear Day I Can’t See My Sister – Minelli’s ’70 film “On A Clear Day You Can See Forever”, w/ Streisand.
- Goo Goo Gai Pan – play on Chinese meal Moo Goo Gai Pan, in P of Chinese babies
- Mobile Homer – play on “mobile home”, a term for a vehicle that doubles as a full living quarters
- Seven Beer Snitch – phrase ‘Seven Year Itch”, the urge to cheat on your spouse after 7 years.
- Future-drama – play on Groening’s other (late) animated show, “Futurama”, in a flash-forward ep
- Don’t Fear the Roofer – Rock group Blue Oyster Cult’s ’76 hit “Don’t Fear the Reaper”, in P involving a roof-repair worker
- The Heartbroke Kid – play on ’70s film comedy “The Heartbreak Kid”
- A Star is Torn- Minelli’s 50s film (& 2 remakes) “A Star is Born”
- Thank God It’s Doomsday – play on the cliched remark by Monday-Friday workers “thank God it’s, Friday!”
- Home Away From Homer- Phrase “home away from home”
- The Father, The Son and the Holy Guest Star-Play on the Christian ‘trinity’ of God, “the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost”
- The Girl Who Slept Too Little-Play on the film “The Man Who Knew Too Much”
- The Bonfire of the Manatees- Tom Wolfe’s novel “The Bonfire of the Vanities”
- Marge’s Son Poisoning- pun on “sun poisoning”
- See Homer Run – Play on “see Spot run”, from the “Fun With Dick & Jane” series of kids’ books; “run” as in “for elected office”
- Milhouse of Sand and Fog- pun on Andre Dubus III’s ’99 novel “House of Sand & Fog” (& 03 film)
- The Last Of The Red Hot Mamas- A common burlesque- and sultry-singer term from the ’40s, and HBO’s award-winning 03 film :Last of the Red-Hot Bombshells”
- The Italian Bob- ’69 Comedy “The Italian Job”
- My Fair Laddy – Musical version of Pygmalion, “My Fair Lady”, Laddy is Scots for “boy”
INCREDIBLY MINOR ANAL-RETENTIVE NITPICKs
– Ulyssyes is the Roman name of the hero of the Odyssey, but the Greek name is Odysseus. Ulysses isn’t wrong though.
– I think “I Married Marge” refers more directly to “I Married Joan”, the 50s sitcom. I may be wrong.
– You mixed up Ruth Power’s daughter’s name with that of her voice actor. Laura Powers is voiced by Sarah Gilbert.
– The plot of “The Genesis Tub” is more closely based on the Twilight Zone’s “The Little People”
– Yeardley Smith was in Maximum Overdrive, just to complete the connection.
– Despite the name staying the same, the Big Ten has had 11 teams since 1990, when Penn State joined.
– Crime and Punishment was written by Dostoevsky, not Tolstoy.
– The Star-Spangled Banner depicts Key’s account of the War of 1812, not the Revolutionary War. (Actually, Key was born about four years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.)
– The Roadrunner cartoon Moose refers to is actually called ‘Fast and Furry-ous.’
– “Home Alone” isn’t an “80s film”. It was released in 1990.
– “Homer Goes To College” might be a reference to various movie titles that share similar phrasing, eg: “Carmen Goes To College”, “Jethro Goes To College”, “Mr. Belvidere Goes To College” and “Ghoulies IV: Ghoulies Go To College”.
– “King-Size Homer” could be a meta-reference to the third segment from THOH3, “King Homer”.
Special thanks to RMIII, Vox Nerduli, Super Bowl Jim Beam.
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