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The 20 Most Cromulent Simpsons Episodes of All-Time: #15 Thursday, April 26, 2007

Posted by Shakarean Hutchinson in Not better than the SOFTBALL EPISODE, Reasons why I am single, SA, the simpsons, Things too long to read, TV.

(Let me preface the following post: I am NOT CDNMoose [ed. note: she *wishes*]. I am NOT a guy. I get that the letters S and A are rather hard to pick up by themselves, so I’m just letting everyone know that two people do these most cromulent Simpsons episodes posts. Not one. There were some confusion the last time I did one of these and hopefully now there will be no more mix ups.)

Due to forces beyond our control you, loyal reader of DeadOn, is getting a second dose of the Simpsons cromulent 20. Which means that there are still 14 more weeks to go until “The Simpsons Movie” comes out. While we wait for the humidity to get out of control, let’s take a trip down memory lane and revisit a Simpsons’ episode that had the majority of Springfield in the forefront.

Before we begin, I must say that this episode made me want to be a writer. Not that I’m gonna be one (because I suck), but it influenced me to write a “novel.” I say it like that because this episode came out in the year 1996. And I was 10 (birthday hadn’t come yet). And this novel (which I still have) is around 20,000 words. That, my friends, is not a novel. It’s like a really really really really long short story. But I was 10 so fuck it, it’s a novel. Anyway, I got the idea for the novel based on this episode. Because of that, I still call this Simpsons epi “short stories” instead of the real title.

Yes, I am that much of a loser.

So I’m just like every other person who has that novel that no one will ever read. Yea! And with that, let’s get into partying like you’ve never before in five minutes, getting gum out of your hair, and having aurora borealis contained entirely inside your kitchen.


22 Short Films About Springfield

Written by a plethora of people
Directed by Jim Reardon

Season 7, Episode 21
Originally aired April 21, 1996

20. Homer At The Bat
19. Hurricane Neddy
18. Homer Goes to College
17. Homer’s Enemy
16. The Cartridge Family
15. 22 Short Films About Springfield

Episode Synopsis

22 short films about the residents of Springfield that all connect one way or another. Even if it is by a doughnut rolling down the street.

Why This Episode Is Particularly Cromulent

It features a lot of Springfield’s supporting characters and if you’ve read my last DeadOn post, you know that I’m not big on supporting characters getting their day in the sun. But it’s done right here. The total focus isn’t on the Simpson family. And we get some pretty good spoofs.

Notes and Observations

  • This episode is a take on the movie Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould.
  • Despite the title there is not 22 short skits in this episode. If anything you can say 21, but it’s really more like 20 if you count several of the continuing skits every time they come on screen. The skits are:
    1. Bart and Milhouse squirting ketchup and mustard from the overpass.
    2. Apu goes to a party at his brother’s house.
    3. Lisa has gum in her hair.
    4. A bee stings Smithers while on a bike ride with Mr. Burns.
    5. Dr. Nick treats Grampa Simpson.
    6. Snake robs Moe.
    7. Skinner hosts Superintendent Chalmers for dinner.
    8. Homer gets Maggie trapped inside a newspaper stand.
    9. The police debate the difference between Krusty Burgers and McDonald’s.
    10. Bumblebee Man at home.
    11. Chief Wiggum and Snake are captured by Herman.
    12. Reverend Lovejoy’s dog defecate Ned’s lawn.
    13. Everyone comes out to give Marge advice on getting the gum out of Lisa’s hair.
    14. Cletus
    15. Milhouse runs into Comic Book Man’s store to use the bathroom.
    16. Snake and Chief Wiggum at Herman’s store again.
    17. Lisa gets a hair cut to get the gum out.
    18. Nelson pisses the wrong person off.
    19. Bart and Milhouse realize that everyone has their own story.
    20. Professor Frink tries to run and get his story told but fails.

    If you wanted to count the very first scene in the show were Bart and Milhouse are spitting on cars, then you have 21. But if you want to get technical, there are only 16 stories, with several of the skits being continuations. And yet, I’m sure there will be plenty of you that say that the real number was something different.

  • There were several skits that were deleted because of the length of the episode. Some characters that didn’t get their own skit in the broadcast were: Marge, Patty and Selma, Lionel Hutz, Krusty, and Ralph.
  • A boat load of people wrote this episode. They are: Richard Appel, David S. Cohen, Jonathan Collier, Jennifer Crittenden, Brent Forrester, Rachel Pulido, Steve Tompkins, Josh Weinstein, Matt Groening, and Greg Danials.
  • Ian Maxtone-Graham was the influence for the tall man that breaks Nelson down.
  • Other writers who are in the show are: Matt Groening, Josh Weinstein, and (producer) Bill Oakley.
  • Several of the skits parody Pulp Fiction (ie. Krusty Burgurs vs. Quarter Pounders, Snake and Chief Wiggum being captured and tied up by Herman). Other nods to the movie include Apu’s brother making a square like Mia Wallace, the diner the cops are in looks like the diner Pumpkin and Honey Bunny tried to rob, and the Simpsons theme song is played in the Misirlou style that was frequent in the film.
  • One of my favorite quotes from the show is Superintendent Chalmer’s Aurora Borealis comment. In case you don’t know (which you do because everyone who reads DeadOn is a freaking genius man) that is the Northern Lights. The quote is a reference to the movie The Langoliers.

Memorable Quotes

SpittingBart: Milhouse, do you ever think about the people in those cars?


Milhouse: I try not to. It makes it harder to spit on ’em.

Apu: Well, I don’t like to leave the store but for the next five minutes I’m going to party like it’s on sale for $19.99.

SmithersSmithers: I, I’m allergic to bee stings. They cause me to, uh, die.

Smithers: [collapsed] Help… me.
Riviera: Holy smokes, you need booze.

Supernintendo ChalmersChalmers: Good Lord, what is happening in there?
Skinner: Aurora Borealis?
Chalmers: Aurora Borealis? At this time of year? A this time of day? In this part of the country? Localized entirely within your kitchen?
Skinner: Yes.
Chalmers: May I see it?
Skinner: Oh, erm… No.

Agnes: [offscreen] Seymour! The house is on fire!
Skinner: No, mother. It’s just the Northern Lights.
Chalmers: Well, Seymour, you are an odd fellow, but I must say you steam a good ham.
[Chalmers walks off. He looks back at Skinner, who flashes him the “thumbs-up” sign]
Agnes: Help! Help!

DinerCopsLou: You know, I went to the McDonald’s in Shelbyville on Friday night —
Wiggum: The McWhat?
Lou: Uh, the McDonald’s. I, I never heard of it either, but they have over 2,000 locations in this state alone.
Eddie: Must’ve sprung up overnight.
Lou: You know, the funniest thing though; it’s the little differences.
Wiggum: Example.
Lou: Well, at McDonald’s you can buy a Krusty Burger with cheese, right? But they don’t call it a Krusty Burger with cheese.
Wiggum: Get out! Well, what do they call it?
Lou: A Quarter Pounder with cheese.
Wiggum: Quarter Pounder with cheese? Well, I can picture the cheese, but, uh, do they have Krusty partially gelatinated non-dairy gum-based beverages?
Lou: Mm-hm. They call ’em, “shakes.”
Eddie: Huh, shakes. You don’t know what you’re gettin’.

LovejoyLovejoy: C’mon boy, this is the spot, right here. That’s a good boy, do your dirty sinful business.
Ned: Well, howdy, Reverend Lovejoy. Nice to see you there … on my lawn … with your dog.
Lovejoy: Oh, oh, ooh, bad dog! Look at that, right on Ned’s lawn. Now how could you do such a thing? [quietly to the dog] Good boy, don’t stop now. Bad dog, I condemn you to Hell.
Ned: Better get the old snow shovel back from Homer, eh?
Lovejoy: [to dog] Good boy, don’t stop the music.

FrinkProfessor Frink: N-hey, n-hey
Professor Frink, Professor Frink
He’ll make you laugh, he’ll make you think
He likes to run
And then the thing with the…
um, person…
Oh boy, that monkey’s gonna pay.

Okay, technically not a quote, but I do love the song:

CletusSome folk’ll never eat a skunk
But then again some folk’ll
Like Cletus
The slack jawed yokel.

Most folk’ll never lose a toe
And then again some folk’ll
Like Cletus
The slack jawed yokel.



22 skits that somehow intertwine=good. And they inspire really bad writing from 10-year-olds.



1. MitchKayak - Thursday, April 26, 2007

I use “that monkey is going to pay” ever chance I get. Sadly I just get weird looks.

2. Baba Oje - Thursday, April 26, 2007

This one? Really? How can this be #15? If you were to ask 100 random people what their favorite simpsons episode was, this will not get mentioned once. Softball I put the over/under at 35.

Jim/Nick - Sunday, December 4, 2011

Heresy! The Aurora Borealis quote alone puts this in the top 20

3. ska2682 - Thursday, April 26, 2007

I have to agree with this episode, one of my all-time favorites. The Cletus song, and the McDonald’s conversations are pure genious.

4. LenBiasCocaineSurplus - Thursday, April 26, 2007

Needs more emphasis on the “not better the softball episode” tag

5. Peter Cavan - Thursday, April 26, 2007

I give this episode credit for the Cletus sketch — the theme song is hysterical and the dialogue between Cletus and Brandine is perfect. I’ve also told my cat to “do your dirty sinful business” while he’s using the litter box. Other than that, it’s a good but not great episode. I don’t think I’d put it in my top 20.

6. Greek McPapadopoulos - Thursday, April 26, 2007

This is definitely worthy of inclusion. Naysayers be damned. There always needs to be more references to Glenn Gould.

The Maison Derriere episode needs to make an appearance, I believe (or it might just because I just saw it yesterday–I’m not sure what it is).

7. SA - Thursday, April 26, 2007

I love that everyone is pretty much on one side or the other with this episode. If every fan wrote down their Top 20 Simpsons’ episodes of all time I guarantee you that not two people would have the same 20 in the same order. It’s just that hard to come up with. I honestly could put Season 3-8 up there and just rattle them off.

And the Cletus song is right up there with my all time favorite songs on the Simpsons.

8. Baba Oje - Friday, April 27, 2007

I bet softball would be in everybody’s top 20

9. angus beef - Monday, May 21, 2007

probably my favorite episode.

10. djs - Monday, March 10, 2008

Hank Scorpio! Best Episode Ever!

11. Natalie - Sunday, May 4, 2008

Aurora Borealis?!?!?!?!


12. Snake D. Snake - Friday, July 10, 2009

I’m ashamed to admit I don’t get a joke in a CARTOON, but I don’t unnastan why Frink would need to get his rhyme from a monkey.

13. Reggie - Thursday, December 31, 2009

Frink doesn’t need the monkey for the rhyme. He was late to the show BECAUSE of the monkey, and that’s why he doesn’t get his own story.

On an unrelated note, I can’t believe there’s no “Lisa on Ice” in this list. Everyone *I* talks to says it’s the best episode ever. “KILL, Bart! KILL, Bart! KILL, Bart!” “Kill BART! Kill BART! Kill BART!”

I also have a certain fondness for “Cape Feare.” And “Treehouse of Horror V.” But “Lisa on Ice” gets the most votes from people who AREN’T me.

14. Chas - Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Skinner skit, and the Cletus skit make this top 20 worthy. On a side note….I’ve never met the writer of this article. I’ve never seen the writer of this article, or had any contact with them what so ever……but I think we should procreate as soon as possible!

Chas - Tuesday, March 6, 2012

…and yes that last part was somewhat taken from the Homer badman episode.

15. Portal o tematach błachych - Monday, July 29, 2013

Simply a smiling visitor here to share the love
(:, btw great design .

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