My Simpsons Ultimate Episode Ratings and Rankings: Season 11, Part 3
by, 03-20-2012 at 12:29 AM (1007 Views)
13.) Pygmoelian - 3/5
14.) Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner? - 2.5/5
15.) Faith Off - 2.5/5
16.) The Mansion Family - 2/5
17.) Bart to the Future - 2/5
I have said this many times(largely I suppose because they get so many episodes devoted to them,) but I think Moe along with Flanders and to a lesser extent Nelson have received the most amount of attention in the Scully and Jean Eras, at least as far as secondary characters are concerned. And as a Moe episode Pygmoelian is alright, but nothing special. The direction from Mark Kirkland helps and I like the design of the "new" Moe. The episode probably could've made for an interesting character study if the idea of having Moe deal with his physical appearance was done with a more serious tone, but then we are talking about an animated comedy here. Having him get a part on a soap opera probably wasn't the greatest idea though and from then on the episode plays out in typical Scully fashion and ends with a cop-out. The little Bart, Lisa, and Maggie side story is a blatant and obvious example of padding but I wasn't bothered by it. In the grand scheme of Moe episodes this is a relatively harmless but extremely forgettable episode....well for the most part anyway. I'll always remember two lines from this one though: "With sexy results!" and "Duffman Can't Breathe!"
Speaking of forgettable, next we come to an Al Jean episode about a critic! I have recently read many posts claiming that Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner is one of the best episodes of this season, but I don't see the greatness. Like the last six or seven episodes I touched on I'd consider it alright, but for me it is even more bland and forgettable. The story itself isn't bad and flows competently enough. Unlike several of the remaining episodes I have to discuss the ending isn't horrible. I remember Ed Asner is involved only because I happen to like him as an actor, but he's wasted here. Aside from that I remember "That's gonna replace the whale in my nightmares" because as an 11 year old I used to actually say it out loud at random times when I felt it fit after seeing this episode. And aside from that I remember enjoying the Cable Guy dig and the no comeuppance thing but that's really all. If this episode has anything else I enjoyed I guess I'll only know for sure the next time I re-watch it...and then probably forget again.
I am not the biggest fan of Homer Goes to College. In fact, I probably prefer over 100 episodes from the Scully and Jean Eras to Homer Goes to College, but Faith Off's first act feels like an even less funny version of that episode. And don't get me wrong Homer Goes to College has plenty of funny stuff but...eh, I'll discuss that one when I get there I guess. Faith Off also has Jerk-Ass Homer in full force. He looks particularly awful while driving the float drunk, but I think his little dialogue with Ned regarding how he salted his earth was even worse. I know it is a relatively quick gag but still...plus the Fat Tony ending is pretty weak too, minus one or two quick gags. And the very end with Dr. Hibbert is another example of "wonderful" Scully Era story endings. I do enjoy much of Bart's story until the big game though and his song is particularly enjoyable. Milhouse getting run down was also pretty funny though I'm not sure I should admit that.
The Mansion Family's entire last act on the yacht is awful. That's all it really is just...awful. The awards show at the beginning has some good stuff and I'll always remember a couple of the Burns gags when he's at the Mayo Clinic, but the rest? Well it ranges from okay if forgettable to monkey knife fights awful. The remaining episodes somehow managing to be even worse is saying something. Bart to the Future is the weakest look into the future by far. I don't think I dislike it because I wanted to see Bart succeed or anything but rather because the entire thing just isn't really that funny or entertaining to me. I mean the thing I remember most about the episode is Homer's search for Lincoln's gold! Now that I think of it Marge has a really great line during that story that actually just put a smile on my face. There are three superior future episodes to watch over this though. Well next time I'll discuss my 5 least favorite episodes of this season and then give my thoughts on the season as a whole.