Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Great (film) Debates vol. 53

I will follow the Commentarama Rules. I will follow the Commentarama Rules. I will follow the Commentarama Rules. I will follow the Commentarama Rules.

What is your favorite Simpsons moment?


Panelist: AndrewPrice

There were many great moments, but the one which really stuck out to me was when Sideshow Bob was up for parole and he had "Die, Bart, Die" tattooed on his chest. When asked about this, he said it was German for "The, Bart, The!" And one of the parole officers said, "No one who speaks German could be an evil person." I still laugh at that years later.

Panelist: BevfromNYC

I am not sure since I really stopped watching the Simpson’s years ago, but that never stops me from answering any question. Okay, I really like their Halloween shows and the credits at the end.

Panelist: T-Rav

I honestly never watched much of The Simpsons growing up (my mom wouldn't let me), but there were a few moments I did see, and enjoyed. My favorite was one of the "Treehouse of Horror" episodes, when Homer goes three-dimensional, gets sucked into a weird space-time grid, and eventually falls through a black hole. Bart: "Uh, we hit a snag and the universe just sorta collapsed in on itself."

Panelist: Tennessee Jed

I have none. Don't like it and don't watch it.

Panelist: ScottDS

Oh boy. I can quote many moments from The Simpsons but picking a favorite? It might be a cop out answer but the town hall meeting in "Marge vs. the Monorail" (written by Conan O'Brien) might just be my favorite: from Phil Hartman to the famous monorail song to one of my favorite Mr. Burns moments (when he introduces himself as "Mr. Snrub").

Comments? Thoughts?

119 comments:

Commander Max said...

My favorite Simpson moment was Homer bouncing down a cliff and not missing a single outcrop.

I remember watching it when it started on Tracy Ullman(sp?). Back then it was kind of funny.
It was enjoyable for the first few years, after a decade it was getting predictable.
After 20 years? No thanks, I'm done.

My next favorite moment will be when they finally end the series.

shawn said...

It's from Lisa the Iconoclast the episode in which she finds out that Jebidiah Springfield isn't the saint that he is portrayed as in history.

The musuem curator says to lisa "Looks like someone has a case of Jebiditis."
And lisa repsonds, "Just when I got over my Chester A. Arthritis."
And he replies, "You have arthritis?"

Anonymous said...

My favourite two episodes have to be "Cape Feare" where they do homage to the movie Cape Fear with Sideshow Bob again trying to kill Bart (which always produced great episodes) and "You Only Move Twice" where Homer goes to work for the very friendly Bond like bad guy Hank Scorpio.

As to one favourite moment... I couldn't just pick one, I really liked the songs they did early on. I loved Monorail, Bagged Me A Homer, We Do and See My Vest.

Scott.

Cheryl said...

My favorite Simpsons moment is anytime that my eldest son and I recount in a family gathering how we used to sneak and watch the show when the younger siblings and husband were asleep or gone. The Simpsons were forbidden viewing in our home, you see. So it was our little secret that we shared. The indignation that the others express upon the revelation, no matter how many times it's told, is hysterical!

Cheryl said...

Also anytime I call my son-in-law Joey Jo-Jo in Barney's voice. ("That's the worst name I ever heard.")

Or pretty much any scene that my youngest son and daughter recount. (We all watched it later in life) It's always funnier listening to them do the characters. They can get me just cracking up!

ScottDS said...

Very often, the funniest moments have nothing to do with the actual plot of the episode... and those moments are the first ones to go when the episodes are shortened for syndication.

There are some hilarious moments in the "I didn't do it" episode:

"If we call be more like little Rudiger-"
"His name is Bart."
"His name's not important!"

Troy McClure squinting to see his teleprompter: "Welcome to the Brad Goodman... something or other..."

"They're heading to the old mill!"
"No we're not!"
"Let's go to the old mill anyway, get some cider!"

There are many more... too many to mention here... but I just can't remember all of them!

Outlaw13 said...

When the Simpsons visit Duff gardens and see the Seven Duffs: Sleazy, Queasy, Surly, Edgy, Tipsy, Dizzy, and Remorseful.

Also there's an episode where Homer has been declared handicapped and it allowed to work at the Nuke plant from the house on his computer. An instruction comes up on his computer "TO CONTINUE PUSH ANY KEY" Homer desperately looks for the "ANY KEY" and can't and the plant nearly melts down.

The show really used to have some insightful social commentary, the it became rather lame...I don't watch it anymore.

Outlaw13 said...

Additionally any Itchy and Scratchy cartoon is prime viewing for me.

T-Rav said...

I think those punning moments are probably the best. The first example that comes to mind is from the Simpsons movie, when Homer gets hit by a wrecking ball and gets smacked back and forth between a rock and a building labeled "A Hard Place." Ha.

Mike K. said...

I haven't watched it for years, but there were two running jokes that never failed to crack me up:

1) Whenever Homer sobs hysterically while eating.

2) Homer is preparing to do something incredibly stupid and/or dangerous, such as repairing a cuckoo clock with a power drill and a hammer, and murmurs, "Easy, easy.."

Floyd R. Turbo said...

The two lines I use a lot is one where Homer eats the Waffle god and says "Sacrelicious". Love that... "I know I shouldn't eat thee..." Gets me every time.

Also Ralph Wiggums saying "unpossible" is a great one.

My favorite episode is the Monorail episode as per Scott which reminds me... Damn I miss Phil Hartman.

The phone call gags are great too. "I'm looking for Amanda Hugginkiss!"

And there's one episode where someone calls 9-11 and they go through a series of push button instructions... "push 5 for regicide".

AndrewPrice said...

Max, That was one of those moments that was an homage back to the classic age of cartoons and I laughed the whole way down.

I agree about not watching it anymore. I stopped somewhere season 10 I think.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I can still sing that See My Vest song and I haven't seen that episode in 10+ years now!

AndrewPrice said...

Shawn, I like that Chester A. Arthritis.


Cheryl, Forbidden viewing your house? What did your family have against the Simpsons?

DUQ said...

This show used to be so clever early on and there are so many great moments. But my favorite line was when Burns and Homer are in the cabin and Burns says, "Every man from the mightiest pharaoh to the most common man enjoys a good sit." LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, That's the problem with syndication. They have to cut things out because of time constraints.

AndrewPrice said...

Outlaw, I stopped watching because the show lost it's edge and became about celebrities and it became obsessed with gays.

Duff Gardens was hilarious. So was the Westworld take off at Itchy and Scratchy World1

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I thought the movie was a notable return to form for the show, though that didn't translate back into the series.

AndrewPrice said...

Mike, I laugh at that too... "easy... easy..." BANG!

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, Those moments make me laugh too. I also love the word "embiggens."

I love the phone menu too... "if you know the name of the crime being committed..."

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, That was hilarious! That was back when they were really clever in turning phrases.

Doc Whoa said...

Oh wow! Too many to mention. But you're right that they are all early on. I think I like the episode where Homer ends up in the 3-D world and he says, "Did anybody see the movie Tron?" and all the other characters say "no."

Doc Whoa said...

I also like every episode where they mock Disney. And the moment where Groundskeeper Willy talks about "the shinnin'" and Bart says, "don't you mean the Shining?" And Willy says, "Shhhh... do you want to be sued!"

Jen said...

I haven't watched the Simpsons in a very long time, and it used to be a Sunday ritual 10+ years ago. The one episode that sticks in my head is where Lisa was worried about having the "Simpson" gene, but found out it only affected the males (kinda sounds like my family--LOL).

Homer saying "D'oh" was good to use on others when they did something stupid.

AndrewPrice said...

Doc, Those were indeed excellent moments and my friend and I often use the Groundskeeper Willy line -- especially because of the way he says it, "do ya want to be suuuued?!" LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, "D'oh" has entered the national lexicon. So has, "doooonuts."

Jen said...

Andrew, I shoulda known that you would use the "D" word, LOL! Are you drooling yet? How about "beeeeeerr"?

I don't like beer, but I do like doughnuts.

LawHawkRFD said...

I guess I'm one of those who "didn't get" the Simpson's. I'd come home from work, and my son (an adult by then) would be glued to the TV watching it. I just couldn't get into it. But I do remember the 1995 episode where they coined the unforgettable phrase for the French: Cheese-eating surrender monkeys.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, I'm not big on beer. I'll stick to the doughnuts.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, LOL! That they did, and that phrase certainly has stuck in the American consciousness.

Ed said...

This was my favorite show for years, but then it lost me. It got lame and predictable and lost it's edge. Then it went from insightful to liberal. And Andrew's right, it seems that whole seasons suddenly became about which characters were gay.

Ed said...

And frankly, I have nothing against gays at all, I just don't want to watch a television show that obsesses about it.

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, I had the same thought. I'm totally fine with gays. I've known many and never had an issue with it. But that doesn't mean I want to see a television show that week after week tried to promote it. I simply don't want to see a one-issue show that beats you over the head as bluntly as humanly possible. The word is subtlety folks.

shawn said...

Another favorite moment, and has become a faily well known meme, is from the episode Deep Space Homer in which Kent Brockman says on air "And I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords."

DUQ said...

I liked anything dealing with Krusty the Clown. That is one of the best written characters on television!

AndrewPrice said...

Shawn, That was a fantastic line! And you're right, that has become a meme. I hear it all the time.

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, Krusty is great, especially his penchant for being an absolute jerk.

Jen said...

It's been too long ago, and details are fuzzy (I don't have time right now to research it) but the episode where Springfield decided to disarm its citizens, and the ghosts from notorious outlaws (Billy the Kid, etc.) came back to haunt the town.

If I remember right, there was a line that said "If guns are outlawed, then only outlaws will have guns", or something like that.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, I like one of the Halloween specials where they ban weapons and then the aliens land and take over because no one can fight back, until someone finds a board with a nail in it. And the final line is about the humans finding bigger boards with bigger nails until they kill each other off. That was hilarious.

Ed said...

One of the things I liked about them originally is that the Simpsons were an equal opportunity offender. They attacked stupidity on the left, right or center. But by the 10-12 season, they were exclusively liberal. They were even pushing idead they had ridiculed in the past. That's when they lost me.

ScottDS said...

There's a little moment I love in the episode with Homer's mom where he flashes back to her tucking him in. Kent Brockman is anchoring Channel 6 News but apparently he was using his birth name back in the 60s:

"For Channel 6 News, I'm Kenny Brockelstein!"

T-Rav said...

That's where "cheese-eating surrender monkeys" comes from? Huh. Learn something new every day.

ellenB said...

I like their musical numbers a lot. I also love the image of Moe stealing the whale in the X-Files episode.

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, That's a good way to put it, they were equal opportunity offenders. Nothing was considered sacred or off limits. But over time that changes and they became very liberal. The few times I've seen the show in the past decade it's just been one liberal idea after another. That's a shame.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I liked that too. I also loved "Classic Krusty" when he's interviewing Henry Kissinger one week and then later when he's singing a Doors song the next. LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I like to think of our little home here as both entertaining AND educational! :)

AndrewPrice said...

Ellen, I have that image stuck in my head too as they're carrying the whale across the background. LOL!

EricP said...

Haven't watched since the Treehouse of Horror where Kang (or Kronos) declared a war-torn Springfield as "Just like Iraq," which is fine as Seasons 2-9 provided more than enough laughs for a lifetime. Have seen so many above, too, so will only add when Homer and Marge were having marital troubles and Marge was driving around Springfield reminiscing about times with Homer, the reflections ending with her hearing (you think in her memories), "I'll love you forever ... forever ... forever," only to look in the back seat, Homer doing an echo voice. Little moment, yet laugh every time I hear the word "forever."

AndrewPrice said...

Eric, I missed the Iraq reference. Glad I did.

I remember that moment with Homer in the backseat. That was a nice touch.

T-Rav said...

I did see that Springfield=Iraq bit once, to which my reaction was, "Oh....really." And that was that.

Jen said...

Andrew, I didn't see that Halloween episode that you mentioned.

The part about the Simpsons being an equal opportunity offender reminds me of how many shows (animated or otherwise) are ruined once they became liberal, or politically correct.

I can't relate to what happened with the Simpsons, because I quit watching due to factors I can't recall (might have been my job at the time). I never went back to it after that.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I never saw that one, but I doubt I would miss it. It sounds like the kind of garbage they started doing in the last few years.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, Unfortunately, that often happens with television shows. Futurama has done that too. They went from a great show that went after anything they wanted to a totally liberal show which does issue episodes every week now. I've stopped watching.

Jen said...

Andrew, It just goes to prove that liberalism ruins everything.

AndrewPrice said...

Pretty much.

tryanmax said...

My favorite moment:

Seymour Skinner: I have a bomb.

Chief Wiggum: Wait a minute. Those aren't bombs. They're hot dogs. Armour hot dogs.

Superintendent Chalmers: What kind of man wears Armour hot dogs?

AndrewPrice said...

That was a great moment too because it was totally unexpected.

Outlaw13 said...

Stop The Planet of the Apes I Want To Get Off musical. The Dr. Zaus breakdancing number was awesome.

AndrewPrice said...

Outlaw, That one was so memorable that I actually think about it whenever I watch Planet of the Apes!

tryanmax said...

I also have to say that, even though I stopped watching about season 10-ish, I still haven't missed a "Treehouse of Horror" episode. Still love those. I also still really enjoy the pilot, which was first ran as a Christmas special. I used to even have it in book version (one of those grade-school Scholastic, remember those?) but it's disappeared in one of my many moves. *tear*

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, I had no idea they had Simpsons Scholastic books??

I haven't watched even the Treehouse of Horror stuff in recent years because the show just lost me, but those were always some of their best episodes in the past.

Troy McClure said...

♪♫ I hate every ape I see
From chimpan-a to chimpan-zee
No, you'll never make a monkey out of me. ♪♫

♪♫ Oh my God, I was wrong
It was Earth all along
You've finally made a monkey out of me! ♪♫

tryanmax said...

I think everything popular becomes a Scholastic book for a time.

AndrewPrice said...

I like the apes in the background signing "Dr. Zaius" to the cadence of Amadeus from Falco. LOL!

Girl Monkey said...

Oooh! Help me, Dr. Zaius!

AndrewPrice said...

Poor Troy McClure. All he ever wanted to be was a respectable actor and here we are laughing at him!

Mike K. said...

South Park is still an equal opportunity offender, God bless 'em.

I stopped watching sometime after 9/11, when there was an episode where the Simpsons were sent to Alcatraz because Bart accidentally desecrated an American flag. Satire doesn't make sense when the thing being satirized has never actually happened.

I've tuned in every other year or so to see if I'm missing anything, but it doesn't seem that I am. The show has lost its heart.

AndrewPrice said...

Mike, Even leaving the politics aside, I agree that the show has lost its heart. The few times I've seen new episodes, they are totally just going through the motions. Then you add in the suddenly offensive politics and I find I no longer enjoy the show.

You're right too that you can't satire something that never happened and isn't true. But that point is often lost on liberals, who like to satirize their nightmare version of reality.

Mike K. said...

Hold on--Commentarama has rules, now? What's the big idea?

AndrewPrice said...

That's ok, nobody follows them. ;)

tryanmax said...

Yeah! Commentarama Rules!

Oh, wait. I think I misunderstood.

AndrewPrice said...

Yeah, that too.

5minutes said...

"The goggles! They do nothing!"

AndrewPrice said...

And that of course raises the issue of the three-eyed fish! :)

Anthony said...

One of my favorite moments is when Bart is getting routine beaten up by a school bully and Marge tells him he should tell a teacher. Homer says 'And break the code of the schoolyard?! I'd sooner Bart died!'.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, That reminds me of the moment I should have mentioned. In one of the Sideshow Bob episodes, Bart is praying and he prays that Sideshow Bob dies. Homer hears this and explodes: "You do your own dirty work, boy!"

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!

PikeBishop said...

One from the early 90's that rings true today. Grandpa was receving money from something he forgot about:

Lisa: Weren't you curious you were getting money for doing nothing at all?

Grandpa: Eh.........I just figured the Democrats were in power again.

AndrewPrice said...

PikeBishop, That was really funny. I also like the one where he's complaining about everybody wanting something for nothing, then he walks into the social security office and says "I'm old! Gimme gimme gimme!"

PikeBishop said...

1. Monorail song (homage to the Music Man): But mainstreet's still all cracked and broken: Sorry Mom, the mob has spoken.

2. Martin's Al Gore doll: (pulls the string) "You are listening to me talk."

3. The entire, "Short Cuts" themed 22 Short Films about Springfield with many meta references sprinkled about, including the Cops talking about Milkshakes in an homage to Pulp Fiction.

4. Bart and Homer convert to Catholicism. Homer leaves the confessional......"Wooooo tke that God."

5. Homer quits drinking.

6. The Halloween specials, but especially the one where the did "Microcosmic God" (Lisa creates life for a science project) "They've reached the REnaissance..........I've created Lutherans."

And many more.

PikeBishop said...

Andres: I agree with the show being on auto pilot, gave up on it about three years ago, along with the whole Fox toon Sunday block (after they let King of the Hill go):

For instance the following characters have "befriended" Nelson Muntz in the major plotline: Marge, Lisa, Bart, Homer.

I saw an interview with the cast and crew of Cheers once and they described sitcoms thus: It takes you about two years to get things straightened out and find your voice, get the characters right and let them find their way etc. If you are lucky you get four to six years of excellence and then its down hill by varying degrees. We decided to end it when we were sitting around the table and going "How about....? Nope, did that. So and so does so and so? Nope did that already.

PikeBishop said...

Should be "Andrew" in previous comment. Duh!

Jen said...

PikeBishop, how about "D'oh" to keep with the Simpsons theme? LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

Pike, And here I thought you were talking to somebody else! ;)

Actually, that comments from the Cheers people is very insightful. Like it or not, these shows simply have a limited life and when you try to move beyond that life, it just becomes indifferent and repetitive. I have great respect for shows which know when to quit. I don't think the Simpsons does. I think the Simpsons crew is in love with the money and doesn't care that they aren't turning out anything worthwhile at this point.

I'm not a fan of Fox's cartoon either. I can't stand Family Guy.

Excellent list of moments, by the way.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, It's always D'oh!! ;)

Jen said...

Andrew, I agree with you on Family Guy. I remember when it first came on the air, and I told a guy I was working with at the time that I thought it was a warped cartoon.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, I don't think it's warped so much as just dull, formulaic and uncreative. I also don't find it funny.

ScottDS said...

"My son is also named Bort."

I went to Universal Orlando several months ago but after going on the Simpsons ride, it didn't occur to me to check out the gift shop to see if they actually sold Bort license plates.

After complaining on Facebook, someone posted a photo of a Bort keychain purchased at Universal Hollywood. A friend of mine went to Universal Orlando several months later but he swears he didn't see any. Otherwise, he would've bought one for me.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I love when they're naming Bart too and Homer goes down a list of ways kids could make fun of his name:

"B-art, C-art, D-art, E-art... Nope, shouldn't be a problem."

Jen said...

Andrew, I was thinking about the early episodes, and at the time, 'warped' was the only way I could describe it--that's the actual word I used.

I don't know what happened later on, because I probably quit watching not long after that.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, That's the thing, I think the show tries to present itself as warped so people think that they are watching something original. But it's fake-warped. It's actually very safe and very derivative. They don't take chances.

ScottDS said...

Speaking of funny names and mispronunciations...

From the episode "Burns' Heir" when Bart is sent onto the stage to read the note from Homer:

"Hello, Mr. ...Kurns. I bad want... money now. Me sick."

And then Mr. Burns uses that elaborate crank-powered mechanism to kick Bart in the butt with a boot that hangs from the ceiling.

Man, I miss this show in its prime! I stopped collecting the DVD sets at season 10. I'm sure I'll get the rest... one day... but no rush!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, You stopped around season 10 as well, huh? And you're a moderate. So it's definitely not just political.

Jen said...

Andrew, I never analyzed it that way, and it was a bit "out there" at the time, so I quit watching.

I did like to watch shows that were equal opportunity offenders: In Living Color, and MadTV are the first ones to come to my mind of the non-animated kind. At least that's how I remember them. I don't watch TV anymore.

ScottDS said...

Politics has nothing to do with it. :-)

At some point, I simply stopped watching and I wasn't about to spend my hard-earned dough on an entire season of TV I'd never watched. (I've made a few blind purchases on movies and films scores, though.)

And whenever I would tune in to watch a new one, the results were invariably disappointing. Yet I still laugh out loud at the classics.

And the Cheers quote above is spot-on. Hell, even Seinfeld lasted one season too long. Many would argue two seasons too long but season 8 had some good stuff in it, like the Bizarro Jerry. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, It wanted to be hip, that's what it was trying.

I enjoyed In Living Color and MadTv for a while as well, but both got stale.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I have to give a lot of credit to Seinfeld for the ending, however. I thought it was brilliant. They basically looked the audience in they eyes and said, "all that stuff you laughed at and thought was funny was actually pretty cruel... you're all a-holes." Brilliant. That and the Sopranos ending are two of the best endings ever.

ScottDS said...

I hated the finale of Seinfeld!!!

Don't get me wrong - I'm glad they didn't go for any kind of false sentimentality. And I definitely got the point of what they were trying to do.

But it wasn't funny. And Kramer shouldn't have laughed at the fat man - I always thought that was a little out of character for him. It was a glorified clip show, which wasn't helped by the fact that NBC aired a clip special before the episode! And not only was it a clip show, it was a courtroom show, which was already a cliche by then - something the show would've made fun of a few years earlier.

At the time, The Larry Sanders Show was ending and I remember all the reviews which said that they had a much better finale (they did).

Thankfully, Larry David redeemed himself on Curb Your Enthusiasm a couple years ago when they did the Seinfeld reunion arc.

Jen said...

Andrew, I didn't get to watch those shows all the time. Married with Children was another that was funny at first, but I know definitely got stale--I watched it more than the other two.

I never was a big TV watcher, but the thing was always on in the house (lived with a TV junkie). FOX on the weekend was a big deal though. I tried to always watch if possible.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, In the case of Seinfeld I thought the message was what was brilliant, not the execution. Sopranos had both the brilliant message and the brilliant execution. But I still rate Seinfeld way up there because they did something Hollywood never dares -- they thumbed their nose at the whole show by telling the audience the truth that it really wasn't a nice show.

I never got into Curb Your Enthusiasm.

AndrewPrice said...

Jen, Married With Children got stale the moment they started playing to the studio audience. That's when the show became about ego and went on autopilot.

ScottDS said...

Curb has its moments and it's definitely not for everyone. The last couple of seasons were pretty good but it went through a slump, too. I won't bother linking to any clips since they wouldn't be that funny out of context. :-)

As for Seinfeld, I only wish the finale had been funnier.

Now, as for Married with Children, I haven't seen it in years but I was a fan. I agree about the audience, too.

The only joke I can even remotely remember was an office floor directory and one of the businesses was the "Larry Storch School of Acting." :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, Curb struck me as "too New York." If you didn't have the big city neurotic mentality, it just wasn't very funny.

I can see why you would wish the ending of Seinfeld would be funnier, but I think the point was to berate the audience, so it made sense to me that it wasn't funnier.

I remember quite a few MWC jokes, but they are all from early on. I think Futurama actually parodied what it became perfectly when they had an Al Bundy character sitting on a couch next to a toilet. He flushes the toilet and the audience goes wild. That's exactly what the show became.

ScottDS said...

Andrew -

That joke was in The Simpsons and I thiiink it was the astronaut episode.

Ya know, they described Seinfeld as "too New York" and "too Jewish." Curb mostly takes place in LA. But I can see how "Too LA" would be a problem, too. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, Call it "too LA" if you wish, it's the same thing. Neurotic, nasty, petty and not at all like the rest of America. It's hard to relate to that unless you've been part of that.

ScottDS said...

This might be fodder for another article and I know we've talked about it before (and I know, it's late, at least for me). :-)

I admit that, in terms of people and personalities, some parts of the country are not like the others (though I think the pundits over-estimate our differences)...

...having said that, there are schmucks everywhere. Could Seinfeld work in, say, Dallas? I don't know. Some of the stuff wouldn't be so prominent but many of the basic ideas (petty rivalries, jealousy, trivial arguments) are pretty universal.

EricP said...

>>Jen, I don't think [Family Guy's] warped so much as just dull, formulaic and uncreative. >>

If you haven't already, South Park nails Family Guy to the wall in its two-part "Cartoon Wars" episodes. Keeping with this thread, a Bart Simpson-looking character has a cameo.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I don't agree actually.

Having lived in the Northeast, Washington/Baltimore, West by God Virginia, the South, Florida and the West, I can tell you that the different parts of the country are indeed VERY different. The rest of the country (except parts of Florida) simply aren't like NYC/LA. The rest of the country is not as aggressive, not as lacking in manners, not as impersonal, not as arrogant, and not as ethnically conscious. And you simply won't find people like the Seinfeld gang in places like Texas or Colorado or Tennessee... the cultures are just too different, the attitudes are too different. Yes, you will find people with the same types of flaws, but they express themselves very differently.

And in my experience, this idea that the rest of the country is like little wannabe New Yorkers is a myth believed only in New York, where it's typically used to justify arrogant attitudes toward the rest of the country.

AndrewPrice said...

Eric, I did see that and I laughed my butt off. They absolutely nailed Family Guy in that episode! :)

EricP said...

I loved and will own Ted, but otherwise find Seth MacFarlane incredibly overrated.

whitsbrain said...

This is a cop-out but there are so many great moments, I seriously can't think of one. I own Seasons 1-8 on DVD and Season 8 is where the Simpsons stopped for me. Still, Seasons 3-8 were TV gold.

PikeBishop said...

@ Scott: Some of the best episodes of Seinfeld, were in the pentultimate season I thought (Rogers' chicken where Jerry and Kramer switch apratments leaves me rolling all the time).

Also one thing I noticed about the last season was what I call "2/3 Episodes" in which they would have two excellent plot threads and the third was mind-numbingly idiotic, which shows the writers were running on fumes: Putty a Christian? Kramer doesn't know how to shower? George taking Susan's parents to his mythical house in the Hamptons? Puh-leez!

ScottDS said...

Pike -

Interesting observation. I thought there were a couple good plots, including the business with Kramer and his deli slicer, the Frogger machine, and the penultimate episode, "The Puerto Rican Day Parade," which didn't air for a while in syndication due to protests over Kramer accidentally burning the Puerto Rican flag.

But yeah, so much of it was just stupid. Kramer prepping food in the shower? Give me a break. And James Spader showed up as a friend of theirs going through a 12-step program - how do you completely waste James Spader? Well, they found a way.

AndrewPrice said...

Eric, I haven't seen Ted, though I intend to. But other than that, I do not like McFarlane at all. He's overrated and just not funny.

AndrewPrice said...

whitsbrain, I'm getting the sense that somewhere between 8-10 is where the Simpsons stopped for everyone.

Mountain Man said...

Here's some of my favorites, in no particular order:

After Ned's wife dies, the country singer and Ned have sparks.

When the Simpson go to the steak house and Homer enters the steak-eating contest. Marge says, "Homer, don't fill up on bread!"

Any episode that has someone caring for an injured creature, then an eagle or something always swoops in and carries it off.

The episode with the McDonalds-style pork rib sandwich.

The episode where Bart and Lisa go to Krusty's summer camp.

Anything with Krusty in it.

PikeBishop said...

@ Scott: Interesting take: I actually liked the Spader episode and the Twelve Steps (had a cousin who did the 12 steps and he found the whole apology vs. non apology thing hilarious), but that episode also had "good naked/bad naked" in it" and the third plot was Kramer not knowing how to shower, which somehow ties the whole thing together, rather poorly with Elaine's germ o phobe boss.

The nadir had to be George's house in the Hamptons, which just made me want to throw a brick through the tv during it.

K said...

Andrew:"Scott, I have to give a lot of credit to Seinfeld for the ending, however. I thought it was brilliant. They basically looked the audience in they eyes and said, 'all that stuff you laughed at and thought was funny was actually pretty cruel... you're all a-holes.' "

That's the most disgusting corrupt thing an artist can do. Who was it who wrote all those jokes - for big money, for fame? That's the attitude of a real Hollywood elitist A-hole, they produce the art then attack the audience for liking it - and making themselves utter hypocrites in the process.

AndrewPrice said...

K, I thought it was hilarious. These were the most morally reprehensible characters I'd seen on television in a long time and people were siding with them. I think it was great that the writers decided to lecture people about how wrong they'd been.

Anonymous said...

Thanks 5minutes, how could I forget....

"The goggles! They do nothing!"

I still hear that quote to this day.

Scott.

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