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Author Topic: Simpsons Season 15 Review Thread: Crap... or not?  (Read 6798 times)
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User_names_suck
Professor
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« Reply #200 on: 12-14-2003 16:58 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by leelaholic:
 I actually wouldn't mind a few more seasons. OFF hasn't lost it and I'd like to see Al Jean finish getting it back on track.

I've noticed this a lot why do people always say OFF when refering to the simpsons what the hell does it mean it doesn't make any sense to me the way people just throw this abbreviation 'OFF' around its really confusing and strange to read


Mercapto

Professor
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« Reply #201 on: 12-14-2003 17:06 »

It's short for Our Favourite Family.
User_names_suck
Professor
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« Reply #202 on: 12-14-2003 17:37 »

thankyou so much thankyou thankyou thankyou
newhook_1

Urban Legend
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« Reply #203 on: 12-14-2003 19:34 »
« Last Edit on: 12-14-2003 19:34 »

I think many people are missing a very important point in an area where "The Simpsons" has vastly improved in most season 13, 14, and 15 episodes. The characters now usually have a motive (or reason) for doing things and the problems presented by the plot now have solutions.

  In season 10, 11 and 12 most of the episodes had characters doing things for no apperent reason other than "To get a few laughs", and entire problems presented in the plot where left unsolved by the end of the episode draging quality way down. Take for instance "A Tale Of Two Springfields" in season 12. There was absolutely no motive driving the plot along, sure there was the two area code thing, but that doesn't explain the hatred that Old and New Springfield seem to have towards eachother for no appant reason. On to of that, at the end of the episode the problem that the characters had with the two area codes, (stupid as it was) still was not solved, and no, the auto dial did not solve the problem, because Homer had his main troubles calling places that he wouldn't have on auto dial anyway (like the raido station). Because there was no motive to move half the plot along and what was presented to be the main problem was not solved, the plot therefore was not developed or tied up properly, making an already bad episode almost unbearable to watch. 

Over the current and last two seasons though, the characters have done things for a reason and the problems which presented these motives where usually tied up quite nicely. Take for instance the first Jean produced episode "She Of Little Faith". This episode had two or three motives that presented problems driving the plot so I'll concentrate on the first one. Homer wanted to out do Flanders' toy rocket the he made for Rodd and Todd, to make himself look better in front of Bart and Milhouse, so he got the nerds he knew from collage to make him a better rocket than Flanders'.
Here we see:

A Motive: Looking good in front of Bart and Milhouse.
& A Solution: Get smart people to build him a rocket better than Flanders', thus impressing Bart and Milhouse.

I'm not saying the show is back to classic quailty, but I am saying the story telling has vastly improved. Yes the show still has more than it's fair share of "groaner jokes", scatter brain plots (Like Helter Shelter) and meta gags, but it has gotton to the point where the show is enjoyable again, and if you can't admit that, then you can't be watching the show regularly.
homerjaysimpson

Space Pope
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« Reply #204 on: 12-14-2003 20:36 »

I watched the new simpsons episode. It had no heavy plot but it had X-Mas crap in it.It had stuff riped off from Futurama. F-
leelaholic

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #205 on: 12-15-2003 08:38 »
« Last Edit on: 12-17-2003 00:00 »

Homerjay: No. That couldn't be more crazy.

You are The Grinch.

Great. Now I'm going to sound like hyperbole. Oh well. This was a great episode and couldn't have less taken things from Futurama and the plot was excellent.

Let me cut and paste my other review

5/5 AWESOME!!!

So many great jokes and characters and great moments. It was perfectly paced. It felt like an hour long with so much content. It not only replaces "My Mother the Carjacker" as the best S15 but it also replaces "Marge Be Not Proud" as the best Christmas special. I thought the first two acts in particular were hilarious. The ending sort of reminded me of "Homer Loves Flanders" but this time Ned was helping Homer instead of the other way around. Oh, and there was that perfect little homage to the grinch. This was truly a great one.       smile
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
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« Reply #206 on: 12-15-2003 12:12 »

Since I found most of Leelaholic's "arguments" fairly...well, childish, I'm going to try to provide something more constructive.
 
Quote
Originally posted by Teral:
 

"Three Gays On The Condo" disappointed me. Can anyone give a sound explanation why this episode beat "Jurassic Bark" at the Emmy's? I can't remember any good jokes right of the bat (sorry, but that's the way it is), but I remember some things that hit me right in the face when I saw it. As in things that made me look for the remote.

Homer find some things from the past, takes everything out of context, blows it up to huge proportions and act like a spoiled brat around Marge. Then he realise the errors of his ways, and leaves her, because she deserves better. Again! Haven't this been used in several episodes allready?

So that episode with John (the gay kitch collector) meant nothing? Because Homer has clearly forgotten everything he learned about gays in that one.

The scene in the club. 'nuff said. The only thing I've seen in recent years that was more toe-cringing was Bender's funeral in "A Pharaoh To remember".

And you're telling me jerkass Homer is gone?

If Moe Baby Blues is anything to go by, the show is really picking up. Nothing that would compare to season 6-8, but definetely a big improvement. If Three Gays On The Condo is anything to go by, the show is still up a certain creek.

At the moment MBB feels like the exception to the rule, and not the other way around.

First off, I can sort of see how the repition of "Homer and Marge fight" episodes could bug you a little, but I don't think its a big deal.  A staple of any marriage is that there will be many conflicts during a couple's time together, plus I just consider them to be a staple of the show anyway (Sideshow Bob comes back AGAIN?  And how many times can Bart pull a prank!  Mr. Burns says "excellent" AGAIN?  LAME).

I agree that Jurassic Bark should've won, but again I don't think its so big a deal.  While JB WAS better,  Three Gays is still a substantially good episode IMO.  It has good depth of characters, a good story, good humor (although that's subjective obviously), etc.

"Homer's Phobia" DID meaning something, in that Homer doesn't seem perturbed about his gay friends at all (except when one kisses him, and honestly how many of you wouldn't have the same reaction?).  He maybe stereotypes them a little (which he still does at the end of "Phobia" mind you), but he isn't afraid of them.

I'm not sure I even understand the "jerkass Homer" comment.  He wasn't a jerkass at all in that episode.  He still is every once in a while, but only in the same sense that the "classic" years occasionally characterized him too meanly, IE "Dead Putting Society" in season two, "Team Homer" in season seven, "Homer Goes to College" and a shitload of others in season five, etc, etc, etc.

The club scene was fairly iffy, I agree.  Though again, plenty of "classic" episodes, along with much of Futurama, have some scenes that are iffy.  "The Simpsons" has never been perfect, no show ever has been.
User_names_suck
Professor
*
« Reply #207 on: 12-15-2003 15:39 »
« Last Edit on: 12-15-2003 15:39 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by newhook_1:
I think many people are missing a very important point in an area where "The Simpsons" has vastly improved in most season 13, 14, and 15 episodes. The characters now usually have a motive (or reason) for doing things and the problems presented by the plot now have solutions.

  In season 10, 11 and 12 most of the episodes had characters doing things for no apperent reason other than "To get a few laughs", and entire problems presented in the plot where left unsolved by the end of the episode draging quality way down. Take for instance "A Tale Of Two Springfields" in season 12. There was absolutely no motive driving the plot along, sure there was the two area code thing, but that doesn't explain the hatred that Old and New Springfield seem to have towards eachother for no appant reason. On to of that, at the end of the episode the problem that the characters had with the two area codes, (stupid as it was) still was not solved, and no, the auto dial did not solve the problem, because Homer had his main troubles calling places that he wouldn't have on auto dial anyway (like the raido station). Because there was no motive to move half the plot along and what was presented to be the main problem was not solved, the plot therefore was not developed or tied up properly, making an already bad episode almost unbearable to watch. 

.

To be honest though I'm not really botherd that much by lack of plot
Jokes should always come first to me thats important. obviously a script should be written first and they should make it have an proper end. although sometimes its funny they dont like in 'The comuter wore meance shoes' Although that 'The Who' episodes was weak anyway.
But I think some worse episodes came in the jean era.  The one in the reality tv show was done really badly. It was the first simpsons episode where I actually wanted the thing to end. And Pray anything I think was without any shadow of a doubt 'The worst episode ever' See its even made me talk like comic book guy.
but generally the jean era improved things yes and I still love it and I cant belive people are so stubborn to convince themselves its shit. Its just so odd especially as its the closest thing your going to get to futurama. So try to make the best of it you strange nerds
newhook_1

Urban Legend
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« Reply #208 on: 12-15-2003 16:01 »

I agree it can be funny sometimes ("Tales From The Public Domain" as well as the one you mentioned), but you have to admit it got annoying when it happened almost every week in the Scully era.

And yes "Pray Anything" was the "worst episode ever", but the reason it was so bad is because the cartoon writers guild introduced some damn rule where they had to let a non staff member write an episode (to give everyone in the guild a fair chance I suppose). Unfortunitly they got assigned a retareded midget instead of a good writer.
leelaholic

Liquid Emperor
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« Reply #209 on: 12-15-2003 18:40 »
« Last Edit on: 12-15-2003 18:40 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Shadowstar:
What?! If anything, I'd bill "The Great Louse Detective" as one of the best episodes of Season 14! Sideshow Bob is always great, and Frank Grimes Jr. was kinda dumb, but Bob falling apart since he has lost his will to kill Bart because he's grown accustomed to him, and breaks into song. I love that episode, it was much better than "Today I Am A Clown."

I didn't have good memories of it but, after reading this, I watched my tape again. I loved it! I noticed a lot of things that I forgot about. It had a good plot and was pretty funny, too. Frank Grimes Jr. was stupid, I'll admit, but that didn't bother me too much.
 
Quote
And leelaholic, as much as I love the series, I WOULD mind a few more seasons, because I'm getting pretty tired of digging through average and good episodes to find the four or five jewels each season, as opposed to the earlier seasons which practically every episode was gold.
I can understand what you're saying but I'm not too sure I agree. After seeing truly great recent episodes, (like the latest one) I'm not too sure it'd be worth the loss.
Teral

Helpy McHelphelp
DOOP Secretary
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« Reply #210 on: 12-15-2003 19:49 »
« Last Edit on: 12-15-2003 19:49 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by DotheBartman:
Since I found most of Leelaholic's "arguments" fairly...well, childish, I'm going to try to provide something more constructive.
 First off, I can sort of see how the repition of "Homer and Marge fight" episodes could bug you a little, but I don't think its a big deal.  A staple of any marriage is that there will be many conflicts during a couple's time together, plus I just consider them to be a staple of the show anyway (Sideshow Bob comes back AGAIN?  And how many times can Bart pull a prank!  Mr. Burns says "excellent" AGAIN?  LAME).

It's not that they fight or have arguements from time to time. Being centered around a family that's to be expected, and is actually a pretty good part of the show. What bugged was how Homer took a relatively minor thing from the distant past and blew it out of proportions, and then decided to leave Marge when his bad conscience hit him. There were no conflict, no arguements, no making up to Marge. Homer leaving Marge because she deserves better worked great and was believable in "I Married Marge", here it just felt like a way of forcing the plot.

 
Quote
I agree that Jurassic Bark should've won, but again I don't think its so big a deal.  While JB WAS better,  Three Gays is still a substantially good episode IMO.  It has good depth of characters, a good story, good humor (although that's subjective obviously), etc.

"Homer's Phobia" DID meaning something, in that Homer doesn't seem perturbed about his gay friends at all (except when one kisses him, and honestly how many of you wouldn't have the same reaction?).  He maybe stereotypes them a little (which he still does at the end of "Phobia" mind you), but he isn't afraid of them.

Slightly, but he think of them as humams rather than gays, and even cut in when Barney and Moe (I think it was Moe), insults the gay kitch collector (who's name escapes me right now). He tell Bart he'll accept it if Bart want's to be gay. It just seemed odd for him still to have prejudices. Ofocurse this is all subjective, since it's just my interpretation of "Homer Phobia".

 
Quote
I'm not sure I even understand the "jerkass Homer" comment.  He wasn't a jerkass at all in that episode.  He still is every once in a while, but only in the same sense that the "classic" years occasionally characterized him too meanly, IE "Dead Putting Society" in season two, "Team Homer" in season seven, "Homer Goes to College" and a shitload of others in season five, etc, etc, etc.

Bad wording/post structure on my part. What I meant was: plenty of people (and leelaholic in particular) have told how "Moe Baby Blues" and "Three Gays On The Condo" is prime examples of how this is an entire new show. Plus staunch claims have been made that the jerk that had replaced Homer in season 11-13 was gone. I agree that "Moe Baby Blues" was a great episode, but since I found TGOTC not up to the hype/praise it's been getting, I felt that MBB might just have been the exception to the rule, than the other way around. So naturally I'm a bit sceptical about the "the jerk is gone"-claim also.

Ofcourse Homer can act like a jerk from time to time, we all do.
 
Quote
The club scene was fairly iffy, I agree.  Though again, plenty of "classic" episodes, along with much of Futurama, have some scenes that are iffy.  "The Simpsons" has never been perfect, no show ever has been.

Agreed.
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #211 on: 12-15-2003 20:32 »
« Last Edit on: 12-15-2003 20:32 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Teral:
  It's not that they fight or have arguements from time to time. Being centered around a family that's to be expected, and is actually a pretty good part of the show. What bugged was how Homer took a relatively minor thing from the distant past and blew it out of proportions, and then decided to leave Marge when his bad conscience hit him. There were no conflict, no arguements, no making up to Marge. Homer leaving Marge because she deserves better worked great and was believable in "I Married Marge", here it just felt like a way of forcing the plot.



Good points (and I agree "I Married Marge" is better, but that's just to be expected honestly).  However, the conflict wasn't really so minor.  Homer felt that Marge only married him because of Bart, as opposed to loving him.  Of course he blows it out of proportion a little (which is just one of Homer's character traits).  The episode is basically about Homer feeling that his wife didnt really love him (which I would think would be a pretty major issue in a relationship), and Marge trying to prove that he's mistaken.  Its about Homer feeling lost.  Its not done as amazingly as it might've been done in the classic years (again, to be expected) but I think its done well overall.

 
Quote
Slightly, but he think of them as humams rather than gays, and even cut in when Barney and Moe (I think it was Moe), insults the gay kitch collector (who's name escapes me right now). He tell Bart he'll accept it if Bart want's to be gay. It just seemed odd for him still to have prejudices. Ofocurse this is all subjective, since it's just my interpretation of "Homer Phobia".

Eh, sorta...he still feels that calling them "queers" is being tolerant (hence Lisa's classic line "this is about as tolerant as Dad gets, so you should be flattered" ) and seems to stereotype them still.  He doesn't have any irrational hate for homosexuals (and he doesn't in "Three Gays" either) anymore, but he still obviously doesn't completely "get" that many of the stereotypes are false.  And again, his reaction to being kissed seemed pretty logical...I'd be freaked out too (same goes with a girl I didn't know very well or whatever kissed me randomly too).

Now, I did feel that the kiss scene itself felt a little contrived and too random in itself (we are never given any reason to believe beforehand that this gay friend would kiss him, and in fact there is very little developement of either of them at all).  It seemed a little too blantant of a plot device to move him to Moe's bar.  But Homer's characterization didn't take any hits I thought.

 
Quote
Bad wording/post structure on my part. What I meant was: plenty of people (and leelaholic in particular) have told how "Moe Baby Blues" and "Three Gays On The Condo" is prime examples of how this is an entire new show. Plus staunch claims have been made that the jerk that had replaced Homer in season 11-13 was gone. I agree that "Moe Baby Blues" was a great episode, but since I found TGOTC not up to the hype/praise it's been getting, I felt that MBB might just have been the exception to the rule, than the other way around. So naturally I'm a bit sceptical about the "the jerk is gone"-claim also.

Ofcourse Homer can act like a jerk from time to time, we all do.

If you read review threads of season 14 at the No Homers Club, you may notice a trend.  In November(the start of that season) through February basically, I HATED most of the episodes.  I was at the point of wanting to quit watching.  And even after that I still had some severe negative feelings at first about the show.  Ask anyone there, I was pretty much notorious for being one of the most negative people there.

And was Homer's characterization a problem?  Actually, not really at all.  It was a problem in the episode "Pray Anything" which I really hated (of course, the episode felt like more of a Scully episode then any kind of Jean episode, despite my problems with even his reign), but if anything the other characters were more iffy.  Homer, honestly, was being characterized perfectly well for the most part, and the problem was with those other characters and the stories, etc.  And as the show itself (IMO) improved drastically around March-May, all of the other characters improved as well.  Nowadays I would say Marge is the only really problematic one, and that's mostly isolated incidents as opposed to her character being off as a whole.

I still have my problems with some episodes, but even in the weaker ones characterizations seem correct to me now.  And the show itself is enjoyable most of the time now, and a far cry from seasons 10-12 dreck.  Season 9 is having its ass handed to it on a platter right now as well, although that's not really much of an accomplishment I suppose.


Shadowstar

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #212 on: 12-16-2003 12:33 »

Yeah, I have to agree, "Three Gays" is getting WAY too much credit for such an OK episode. It's good, not great. I also agree that the eps at the beginning of Season 14 were schlock, "Bart vs. Lisa in the Third Grade" and "Helther Shelther" come to mind. Then there were some good ones toward the end, but we also got a couple episodes of utter crap, like "Dude Where's My Ranch?" and "The Bart of War." I HATED "Bart of War," it was so HORRIBLE. It's funny when Terrance and Philip randomly sing the Canadian national anthem on "South Park" since they're Canadian, not the Springfielders singing it for NO REASON!!! I was just about to give up, then "Moe Baby Blues" aired after it and I was choked up by it. The Simpsons has lost some of its luster, but it's still a good show to watch. It just depends what episode.
OK, with that being said, here's what I thought about 'Tis the Fifteenth Season:
I was surprised at this Xmas episode, it was far better than 12's "Skinner's Sense of Snow" and 13's "She of Little Faith" which was Emmy-nominated no less! I loved the Mr. Magoo parody and Star Trek's take on A Christmas Carol. Act 2 was good with Homer being nice, and Act 3's Buddha daydream was good too. But the ending was very rushed and Moe's suicide attempt seemed kind of tacked on. Also, after Comic Book Guy almost conned Martin's mother out of a fortune of that Star Wars valuables in "Worst Episode Ever," why didn't he do the same with Homer and the DiMaggio card? The scene was still funny though. But this episode loses a point because we all know that Homer will be back to his old self by the next episode. Grade: 3.5/5
evan

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #213 on: 12-16-2003 15:05 »

Jeez...I thought there were some decent episodes in Seasons 9 and 10.

As for Sunday's episode, "Tis the Fifteenth Season," I'm having a hard time remembering much of it. I did like "She of Little Faith" and "Skinner's Sense of Snow" a bit more (and they remembered Lisa was a Buddhist, yay!)

The problem with this episode, and with most post-11 episodes, is that it's not very memorable. At least the bad episodes left a taste in your mouth. I'm having a hard time remembering a joke from "Tis the Fifteneth Season" aside from the Rod-in-a-dress one. So much of it seemed like a retread. We've seen Homer and Flanders feud over niceness before ("Homer Loves Flanders" ) and we've seen Homer steal presents before ("Grift of the Magi" ). Honestly, I don't think season 15 has brought anything new to the table...
Otis P Jivefunk

DOOP Secretary
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« Reply #214 on: 12-16-2003 15:13 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by evan:
 Honestly, I don't think season 15 has brought anything new to the table...

It just stole from the table, chewed it over and over again, then spat it back out, leaving a bad after-taste...

DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #215 on: 12-16-2003 20:16 »
« Last Edit on: 12-16-2003 20:16 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by evan:
Jeez...I thought there were some decent episodes in Seasons 9 and 10.


Season 9 was a decent season but that's all I'll give it, as its the season that started the show's turmoil and did absolutely everything wrong compared to seasons 1-8, including even season five. Plus remember how dreadful certain ones were, like Principal and the Pauper, Bart Carny (JTS episode) and Trouble with Trillions. Season ten has a few decent episodes yes...so do seasons 11 and 12...but like those seasons it was still utter dog feces overall, with nearly all the episodes being dreadful and even the decent ones doing at least something horribly wrong in most cases.  Heck....12 is IMO a fair amount better then 10 (although again, that's not really much of an accomplishment).


Shadowstar: Might I suggest hunting down the "Bart of War" review thread at the NHC and reading my comments on it (remember to look past my initial review as I add a lot of more detailed comments later when I realized more things about the episode).  I liked the episode at first but didn't love it...it wasn't until I looked into it more deeply that it seemed to be a much sharper episode.   Hunt down those comments and watch it again, I'm telling you...there's a point to the Canada bit and many other things that you may have taken as simple random craziness at first (as did I).

EDIT: Also, why does "Tis the Fifteenth..." lost a point because Homer will go back to normal?  Marge will go back to being upset with Homer after "Life on the Fast Lane", Leela will go back to bickering with Fry after "Love and Rocket"...its a given that characters will generally go back to the way they were.
John C
Starship Captain
****
« Reply #216 on: 12-16-2003 20:44 »

Aw... I missed "Fifteenth" on Sunday 'cause I was busy decorating my tree.
FishyJoe

Honorary German
Urban Legend
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« Reply #217 on: 12-16-2003 20:52 »
« Last Edit on: 12-16-2003 20:52 »

What was wrong with Bart Carney? I remember it being funny. Season 9, I thought, was promising. The plots were simpler, the jokes slightly lower-brow, but the episodes got better as the season went on, and at the time they seemed less boring than seasons 7 and 8. (I know everyone looks at those seasons as being great, but let's face it, it had some boring episodes. Especially season 7--Class Struggle In Springfield, Lisa The Iconoclast, and the George Bush episodes were all just plain boring)

I was pretty pumped that Scully would do good things for the show. And then season 10 came. Oy, season 10. Everything just got worse and worse. That was the first season where I started to get angry with the show. That's about when Al Jean came back, right?

Anyway, despite all my bitching, I caught last sunday's christmas episode with a few other friends who aren't pleased with the show's current state, and we liked it. The gags were pretty good--I enjoyed the TV parodies, in particular. Sure, it still had its share of bad jokes. There were several points where we all said, in unison: "crappy". But we laughed a lot, too, and none of the characterizations pissed me off. Oh, and the story ended in a semi-reasonable manner. Good job.
Futurama_Hil

Urban Legend
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« Reply #218 on: 12-16-2003 22:18 »

The X-mas ep (whatever it's called, I don't look these things up) was meh, like all other eps this season. Waste of time but if I ha dnothing else to do I'd watch I guess.
bankrupt

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #219 on: 12-17-2003 12:42 »

I found to "Tis the Fifteenth Season" to be fairly boring.  I thought the short parodies were good, especially the section with the Misfit Toys and the McGoo take.  The Grinch tribute was cliche, it's been done enough already.  The rest of the episode is flat though,  but at least it didn't annoy me.
Otis P Jivefunk

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #220 on: 12-17-2003 13:05 »

With Seasons 10-12, at least the crap was still warm, unlike now...
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #221 on: 12-17-2003 13:06 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by FishyJoe:
What was wrong with Bart Carney? I remember it being funny. Season 9, I thought, was promising. The plots were simpler, the jokes slightly lower-brow, but the episodes got better as the season went on, and at the time they seemed less boring than seasons 7 and 8. (I know everyone looks at those seasons as being great, but let's face it, it had some boring episodes. Especially season 7--Class Struggle In Springfield, Lisa The Iconoclast, and the George Bush episodes were all just plain boring)

I was pretty pumped that Scully would do good things for the show. And then season 10 came. Oy, season 10. Everything just got worse and worse. That was the first season where I started to get angry with the show. That's about when Al Jean came back, right?

Anyway, despite all my bitching, I caught last sunday's christmas episode with a few other friends who aren't pleased with the show's current state, and we liked it. The gags were pretty good--I enjoyed the TV parodies, in particular. Sure, it still had its share of bad jokes. There were several points where we all said, in unison: "crappy". But we laughed a lot, too, and none of the characterizations pissed me off. Oh, and the story ended in a semi-reasonable manner. Good job.

(responses broken up by paragraphs)

1.  Bart Carny was bad.  I'm sorry but it was.  Mind you, it does have some decent and even somewhat memorable jokes (but so do lots of other duds, like "Tale of Two Springfields" etc).  The main problem, I guess, is that I feel it was really THE episode that defined the show's jumping of the shark.  The jump the shark episode itself.  The show was already starting to slide by that point, but Bart Carny was just too much.  Homer suddenly got extroidinarily dumb.  Bart was reduced in most scenes to Homer's "straight man", following him around like some mindless robot on whatever irritating adventure Homer decided to embark on (a Scully trait, IE "Maximum Homerdrive", the con artists one, Tale of Two Springfields, etc).  The other characters weren't utilized well either mind you.  And the story is just dreadful and completely Scullyish.  Carnies stealing the family's house?  What the hell kind of writing is this?
Season 7 is one of my favorite seasons personally.  In fact Scenes from the Class Struggle is a very well done character study and and examination of social-class issues, and thus is one of my favorites of the series.  Lisa the Iconlast is another very interesting one, even if it isn't hysterical. Agreed a little on Two Bad Neighbors (the Bush one).  While I enjoy it to some degree, its not really the best and in fact succumbs to what would be the Scully style in many ways, including even the "Bart follows Homer around like a drone while Homer acts like an unlikable jackass" writing of many of his episodes.  As for season 8, its a slight dip from 7 but I don't think its too drastic.  Season 5 is IMO the biggest dip in quality ever seen on the show before Scully came in.

2. At least you agree season 10 wasn't too hot.  It was when Jean came back I believe, or it might have been season 11.  In either case it doesn't matter much, because its really the showrunner running the thing and bringing back one good writer from the past isn't going to drastically change the show either way.  Case in point classic seasons 2-4 writer David Stern coming back to write the dreadful "Viva Ned Flanders" and the bland "Marge Simpson in Screaming Yellow Honkers".


leelaholic

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #222 on: 12-17-2003 17:36 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Otis P Jivefunk:
With Seasons 10-12, at least the crap was still warm, unlike now...

I'm sorry, Otis, but you're being harder to understand than a psychopath with a mouthful of marbles.

The Simpsons of today aren't as good as the classics, but they're not as bad as seasons 10-12. In fact, they're a lot better.

And your comment before about S15 stealing from the table? WTF? Season 15 has been a good one! The Treehouse of Horror was troublesome but it had that awesome "Stop the World, I Want to Goof Off" segment. The season really took off with the IMO fantastic "My Mother the Carjacker". "The President Wore Pearls" was also great although some people hated it simply because it was a musical. "The Regina Monologues"... well, you gotta expect a few crappy episodes a season, and this one was still okay at that! "The Fat and the Furriest" was a little weak plotwise but I guess that was more or less intentional being a "Project Grizzly" parody and all. It still had plenty of good laughs. "Today, I Am a Clown" was also great and "'Tis the Fifteenth Season", the best so far IMO, was amazingly paced. It felt like an hour long with all that content! In fact, it's the first episode since season 8 to get over 100 5/5 votes at NHC!

This season has been great! Why are you complaining??? At least you're not being as bad as homerjay. "It sucked"?? What the hell kind of complaint is that?? If I review a highly acclaimed movie and just say "it sucked" without supporting it, my opinion won't be very valid, will it?
User_names_suck
Professor
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« Reply #223 on: 12-17-2003 19:23 »

Nothing wrong with principal and the pauper, trouble with trillions, 2 brilliant episodes actually. bart carny also very good and by the way principal and the pauper and the george bush episode were written by ken keeler also david cohen was a co executive producer in season 9 and 10, so you can blame futurama staff for it i guess.
or i suppose peoples blind loalty will lead them to belive they were responsible for all the good in it
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #224 on: 12-17-2003 19:49 »

Personally I like Keeler's "Futurama" work a lot more then his Simpsons work, actually.  "Godfellas" in particular is far better then ANYTHING he did on The Simpsons.  If anything his Simpsons record was fairly spotty.  Same goes with Cohen although his Simpsons record was a little better.  As for Cohen being "executive producer", that doesn't mean anything.  Scully was the official showrunner, end of story.  I don't remember Cohen being credited as "executive producer", but with anyone that isn't a showrunner they just throw credits around more or less randomly as a legal thing, to distribute paychecks essentially.  For instance, I believe Tim Long is credited as an "executive producer", and other then writing like everyone else his only real duty under that credit is to help direct the cast during recordings.  Which he may or may not actually even do.  It means nothing.


Well, I already explained why I don't like Bart Carny, but here's stuff I don't like about those other ones:

Principal and the Pauper: First off, it practically RUINS Skinner's character.  Even Harry Shearer nearly refused to read his lines because he felt it was an insult to the audience (and the rest of the staff has admitted it over the years too).  The ending doesn't even save it because its still too insulting.  The story itself is pretty clunky and would fit some lower-end soap opera better then The Simpsons.  As for the humor?  Well, it has a few good gags, but overall lets just say the whole thing is pretty bland. 

Trouble with Trillions:  Ech.  Wacky, overdone Homer adventure where he acts like a dumbass.  The plot is pretty terrible (going to cuba?), and while the humor is capable in some scenes most of the time Homer is too irritating for anything to really work.

Also I guess I forgot to mention Trash of the Titans.  I admit to liking that one a little but its pretty clunky.  Some of the worst Homer characterization up to that point and perhaps ever, combined with some pretty thin and obvious "satire" that never really works.  Oh, and an unneeded guest star.  Gotta have that.

David A

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #225 on: 12-17-2003 19:55 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by leelaholic:
"It sucked"?? What the hell kind of complaint is that?? If I review a highly acclaimed movie and just say "it sucked" without supporting it, my opinion won't be very valid, will it?

Depends on the movie.  For example, here's my review of Titanic: It sucked.  See, I didn't support my opinion, but it's still valid.  In fact, I've never even seen Titanic, and it's still a valid review.

Anywho, back to The Simpsons...
I kinda miss the old days when they would just show the original Christmas episode, instead of making a new one every year.  This year's episode was pretty good, I guess.  The best part was when the mayor told Homer and Ned that they couldn't mention God on city property.  It's funny 'cause it's true.

Speak softly. Drive a Sherman tank.
FishyJoe

Honorary German
Urban Legend
***
« Reply #226 on: 12-17-2003 20:17 »

Dothebartman, good job. I too wasn't a huge fan of Cohen and Keeler's work on The Simpsons. Looking at just their Simpsons stuff, I'm surprised that Futurama turned out as good as it did.

 
Quote
By DotheBartman:
At least you agree season 10 wasn't too hot. It was when Jean came back I believe, or it might have been season 11. In either case it doesn't matter much, because its really the showrunner running the thing and bringing back one good writer from the past isn't going to drastically change the show either way.

Yeah, that's true. I'm not sure where I was going with that observation--it was just an interesting thing I thought I'd note.

Also, if I saw Bart Carney right now, I would probably agree with you. I suppose it had a lot of Scully-esque quirks, but it aired before those quirks became totally out of hand. The bizzareness of the story was funny at the time, and there were a lot of good gags. I certainly wasn't thinking "oh yeah, the show's totally jumped" when I first watched it.

Also, I haven't seen any season 5 episodes in years, but I remember loving it too. David Mirkin's episodes struck me as being simply the funniest. Maybe they made Homer too stupid, or whatever...but if the gags work, I don't have as much of a problem. It's when you get to the laughless Scully episodes that the characterization flaws really stand out.
User_names_suck
Professor
*
« Reply #227 on: 12-17-2003 20:54 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by DotheBartman:
Personally I like Keeler's "Futurama" work a lot more then his Simpsons work, actually.  "Godfellas" in particular is far better then ANYTHING he did on The Simpsons.  If anything his Simpsons record was fairly spotty.  Same goes with Cohen although his Simpsons record was a little better.  As for Cohen being "executive producer", that doesn't mean anything.  Scully was the official showrunner, end of story.  I don't remember Cohen being credited as "executive producer", but with anyone that isn't a showrunner they just throw credits around more or less randomly as a legal thing, to distribute paychecks essentially.  For instance, I believe Tim Long is credited as an "executive producer", and other then writing like everyone else his only real duty under that credit is to help direct the cast during recordings.  Which he may or may not actually even do.  It means nothing.

Note i say CO-executive I guess there more senior than a normal writer and they might have more input in each ep than others

 
Quote
Principal and the Pauper: First off, it practically RUINS Skinner's character.  Even Harry Shearer nearly refused to read his lines because he felt it was an insult to the audience (and the rest of the staff has admitted it over the years too).  The ending doesn't even save it because its still too insulting.  The story itself is pretty clunky and would fit some lower-end soap opera better then The Simpsons.  As for the humor?  Well, it has a few good gags, but overall lets just say the whole thing is pretty bland. 
I remember it being very funny though I just meant the episode alone regardless of plot, I think its an over reaction to think its completley implauisble. maybe i need to see it again, I was a few years younger when i saw it and you change a lot from 13 to 16


but its odd because I think it was a holdover from oakley and weinsteins era although often i think they might have been test episodes for the new showrunner
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #228 on: 12-17-2003 20:58 »
« Last Edit on: 12-17-2003 20:58 »

I believe we've agreed before on Keeler and Cohen, but again good to see someone agreeing (I've seen some similar sentiment posted at NHC mind you).  Keeler's work in particular was pretty spotty on The Simpsons really...he always wrote some of the weakest episodes of their respective seasons almost without fail, and "Principal and the Pauper" to me is the first truly awful episode.  He seems more at home at Futurama somehow, not sure the reason.  Of course his song-writing skills are excellent on both shows, but his episodes  on Simpsons weren't the best.

To elaborate a little on Al Jean, its possible he came back on in the hopes that he could help to save it or take over after Scully left.  We've seen a lot of hints, including comments made by him, that he wasn't entirely fond of the Scully years himself in some ways.  Jen Kamerman (former animator for many years and director of a few Scully episodes) even confirmed that he hated the "Tennis the Menace" script.

I can see how Bart Carny's problems wouldn't be as bothersome at the time actually.  I have to admit that I didn't even start watching until that episode was a few years old (I caught up through syndication), so my observation of that one is based largely in hindsight.  Similarly I can see how season 5 wouldn't strike people as having so many problems at that time, although many viewers did notice the difference (alt.tv.simpsons thus had many negative opinions of the show at that time).  They were certainly better, even characterization wise, then the Scully era too.  Its just that, if you magnified season 5 (mind you season 6 is a whole different story and far superior) by about 20 times or so, you'd basically get season 11.

(now responding to User's comments):

Principal and the Pauper is fairly implausable but that's not even the point.  The point was that it was an uninteresting, bland, and in some ways offensive plot.  Homer Goes to College is mostly plausable but the plot is still fairly terrible.

Co-executive producer still means nothing.  They get different titles based on how long they've been around as you said, but it still doesn't mean anything beyond being a legal term really.  Every writer crowds around and adds jokes to the scripts like all the other writers.  The only person that has any specific amount of power over anyone else is the showrunner.

You're right that Principal is an Oakley/Weinstein episode technically, and you're also right that they sometimes use holdovers as "test" episodes for the new showrunners, or at least they did that with "Stark Raving Dad" and "When Flanders Failed".  Not sure what the situation is with this one I guess, although the nature of the other holdover "City of New York vs. Homer Simpson" (ultra-angry Homer goes on crazy adventure) does make some sense with a Scully credit.
User_names_suck
Professor
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« Reply #229 on: 12-17-2003 21:30 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by DotheBartman:


To elaborate a little on Al Jean, its possible he came back on in the hopes that he could help to save it or take over after Scully left.  We've seen a lot of hints, including comments made by him, that he wasn't entirely fond of the Scully years himself in some ways.  Jen Kamerman (former animator for many years and director of a few Scully episodes) even confirmed that he hated the "Tennis the Menace" script.

.

Where does jean hint he wasn't so fond of  some things in scully episodes, I've only read one interview where he implies the opposite

DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #230 on: 12-18-2003 03:13 »

When he first came in he gave an interview where he said that fans "had a point" about certain problems with the show (namely Homer and the overdone surreality).  He also mentioned that Homer was a little overdone at points in the commentaries I believe.  There's also (dunno if this counts) an interview where he comments that many of the fans who complained about the Scully years feel it has gotten better since.  Plus his apparent distaste for "Tennis the Menace", which was certainly a very Scully-ish episode.

Plus, there's just the fact that a bunch of the Scully problems have been vastly improved upon since he came in.
User_names_suck
Professor
*
« Reply #231 on: 12-18-2003 19:55 »

Yeah but the comment about fans thinking it got better since the scully years he said, only a very small minority of fans think that.
so no that doesn't count

I see tennis the menace criticised a lot I thought that was one of the better episodes of the scully years
FishyJoe

Honorary German
Urban Legend
***
« Reply #232 on: 12-18-2003 23:27 »
« Last Edit on: 12-18-2003 23:27 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by DotheBartman:
I believe we've agreed before on Keeler and Cohen,

Oh yeah--you're probably right. It's hard to remember which points I've argued over the years.

 
Quote
Similarly I can see how season 5 wouldn't strike people as having so many problems at that time, although many viewers did notice the difference (alt.tv.simpsons thus had many negative opinions of the show at that time).

Yeah, alt.tv.simpsons was filled with whiny bastards--or at least it was back when I read it. I wonder how the big season 5-8  haters feel about the Scully years. They probably all killed themselves after seeing some of those episodes.
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #233 on: 12-19-2003 11:14 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by FishyJoe:
  Yeah, alt.tv.simpsons was filled with whiny bastards--or at least it was back when I read it. I wonder how the big season 5-8  haters feel about the Scully years. They probably all killed themselves after seeing some of those episodes.

The ones who stayed for even part of the Scully era hated it even more but most left before that I believe.  There are also, keep this in mind, some people who felt it had declined during seasons 5-8 but still enjoyed it and in some cases have even stuck with it since.

Still, I'm not a huge fan of alt.tv.simpsons.  In the past its been mostly whining, and nowadays everyone just posts pointless crap.

DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #234 on: 12-19-2003 11:17 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by User_names_suck:
Yeah but the comment about fans thinking it got better since the scully years he said, only a very small minority of fans think that.
so no that doesn't count

I see tennis the menace criticised a lot I thought that was one of the better episodes of the scully years

Well, he's talking about the fans that criticized the Scully era.  Certainly not all of them like his era better but there's a pretty good amount that do I think, at least on the net.

I actually felt Tennis the Menace was one of the worst of the Scully era or at least season 12, but hey, its all subjective.  I just remember being very disgusted with the unlikable characters, terrible plotting, annoying guest stars, etc.  The scene where Homer imagines Marge and Bart as....(shudders) lovers...really perturbed me at the time and I haven't been able to watch that one since.

leelaholic

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #235 on: 12-19-2003 19:04 »

Scully's era was bad. Period. But I dug out my graphic guides (bored was I) and found 15 exceptions...

The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson
Lisaís Sax
Bart Star
The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons
The Last Temptation of Krust
This Little Wiggy
Trash of the Titans
Lard of the Dance
30 Minutes Over Tokyo
Brotherís Little Helper
E-I-E-I-(annoyed grunt)
Grift of the Magi
Days of Wine and Díohíses
Behind the Laughter
Trilogy of Error
CyberKnight

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #236 on: 12-20-2003 02:37 »

I know this is blasphemy, but I don't like TCONYVHS. I have no clue as to why this is. I just dislike the episode.

Lisa's Sax was indeed very good. But wasn't that a holdover from Season Eight? (I know, I know, nitpicking.  wink).

The rest of that list; I really can't find an episode I liked enough to include in my top 100, let alone my top ten. "This Little Wiggy" was the beginning of the decline of Ralph, to me. I thought he was a perfectly defined character in "I Love Lisa", but after that, the writers just didn't seem to know what to do with him. The same with Milhouse.

The last two (Behind the Laughter and Trilogy of Error) it should be noted are "alternate style" stories, which were quite strong in those years. (Truth be told, I still haven't managed to catch BTL, but I did like "Trilogy of Error" ).

And if there are episodes in S9 I like, despite their "wackiness", I like "Das Bus" and "Simpson Tide" (especially the Russia->USSR sequence).
winna

Avatar Czar
DOOP Ubersecretary
**
« Reply #237 on: 12-20-2003 03:05 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by DotheBartman:
 Well, he's talking about the fans that criticized the Scully era.  Certainly not all of them like his era better but there's a pretty good amount that do I think, at least on the net.

I actually felt Tennis the Menace was one of the worst of the Scully era or at least season 12, but hey, its all subjective.  I just remember being very disgusted with the unlikable characters, terrible plotting, annoying guest stars, etc.  The scene where Homer imagines Marge and Bart as....(shudders) lovers...really perturbed me at the time and I haven't been able to watch that one since.


Oedipus complex?   roll eyes
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #238 on: 12-21-2003 01:40 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by CyberKnight:
I know this is blasphemy, but I don't like TCONYVHS. I have no clue as to why this is. I just dislike the episode.

Lisa's Sax was indeed very good. But wasn't that a holdover from Season Eight? (I know, I know, nitpicking.   wink).


(Regarding TCONYVHS): Maybe because Homer was characterized awfully in some scenes and it turned into another angry/jerkass "Captain Wacky" adventure with no point or depth.

Heh, mind you I actually do like that one.  But you're not alone in not liking it (I've seen similar sentiment) and in fact I would have to say it was considerably flawed.  It was a holdover from season 8 by the way.

Lisa's Sax: Very good, but indeed a holdover....sort of. It was actually "guest produced" by Al Jean and Mike Reiss, same with Simpson Tide (as well as "Simpsonscalifragilisticexpial i(Annoyed Grunt)cious" and "The Springfield Files" in season 8).  In fact, it was recorded a few seasons before, around season 7 or so.  The fact that Doris Grau (who died in 1995) appears as Lunch Lady Doris is proof of that.

Other then that I agree that that list is somewhat underwhelming.  Not that any of them are entirely bad to me (although I do have strong reservations these days regarding "Trash of the Titans" and every season 11 episode listed there for various reasons.  Bart Star has problems too).  Also agreed that "This Little Wiggy" was a ruining point for Ralph.  The episode is reasonably charming, but it started to overdo him and from that point on the joke was less "he's a very dimwitted kid" and more of a "ultra retarded freak makes jokes about sex/boogers/blood, etc" joke.

CyberKnight

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #239 on: 12-21-2003 01:43 »

Exactly. In a way, his development mirrors Homer's. In the "classic" seasons, both Ralph and Homer are slow but sweet. After S10, they just become idiots without any warmth.
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