My second favorite episode of season 9 5/5.
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My second favorite episode of season 9 5/5.
Here we go. I'd venture so far as to say that this was the worst episode of the show at that point in the series.
Now in fairness, things aren't all bad. The song works just fine and Ray Patterson is a reasonable one-time character to put in there (as a side note, I thought it was strange how they didn't talk about Steve Martin whatsoever on the commentary). Although compromised by somewhat by poor bits, there are some laughs to be had. Lisa's daydream in particular stands out, and the rabbit popping out of the earth is undoubtedly hilarious. Given this was only season 9 though, I expect nothing less than some good stuff.
The problems? To start, that annoying Homer that showed himself in glimpses earlier in the season and constantly in the three seasons afterwards is here in all his glory. Trash-talking garbage men, shaking bird cages, kicking someone. :/
But it's not just Homer. I don't really find the episode to be all that well-written even if you completely ignore Homer's behaviour. The setpiece is a little satirical but only mildly enjoyable. When the story gets going, the town essentially follows a mob mentality which usually only works when you have some sense of reason in the story's driving force. And the snowballing problem is concluded with a lazy quick fix solutin. Come to think of it, I'm hard-pressed to find something Trash of the Titans does particularly well that isn't a bare basic element.
Not the worst episode in the world, but very bad for the time. Even now, it remains such a middling viewing experience. 2/5 (D+)
Last edited by Nauru-1; 05-24-2010 at 10:26 AM.
To view various lists about my Simpsons opinions, click the link below.
Jerkass Homer shows, but Steve Martin and The Garbage Man song mitigate that quite a bit. Also, this one is very rewatchable. 3.5/5
I still think there's something...particularly depressing about this episode.
It's not that I think it's bad because I don't think it is, and show does these kinds of "world sucks lol" pessimistic type episodes more than often of course...but for some reason I just find this one more of a downer. I don't know why.
Maybe it's the fact they move the whole town in the end...and even if they take all the buildings that old trashed up area that they abandon's still the Springfield we've watched for 9 seasons (up till this.) and had basically the best years of this show's life on...so it's almost like this episode literally marks the end of those best years by abandoning the old place as a trashed up dump.
Yes I know it wasn't meant to be taken that seriously or with that much permanence, I'm grasping at straws. But yeah, it's depressing to me...but it's otherwise a pretty alright episode.
I'm glad it's a landmark episode in name only. I hate those cheesy special 100th/200th episodes.
Kind of a cheesy/boring episode, but it's still good, it's still good! 4/5.
Pretty decent episode. 3.5/5
Jimbo Jones: [about Homer] I hear that guy's ass has it's own congressman!
Bart Simpson: I wash myself with a rag on a stick.
Homer Simpson: [takes cap out of dryer and puts it on his head] Mmmmm... I CAN feel three types of softness.
Lisa Simpson: [from upstairs] Dad, what are you doing down there?
Homer Simpson: Washing my fat guy's hat honey!
C+ Homer's a jerk and the ending is utterly stupid but it has some pretty funny moments which I'll credit it for. The song was a nice addition too.
Pretty bad episode. The song was just okay, which was unfortunately probably the highlight. Homer's characterization was awful, the funny parts were few and far between, and the ending was really stupid. 2/5.
They shouldn't have cut Milhouse's part in the song.
I don't like the end of this episode.
Like Riviera said, the song is the highlight. 3/5
I've never liked this episode.The story is awful,Homer is a jerk throughout and the ending is just plain ridiculous.Having said that,it has it's moments,but they are few and far between.
Trash of the Titans
Wow; 200 episodes... Congratulations Simpsons! This milestone episode unfortunately lays around the 9th season, the season where it supposedly went to crap. I'll admit, I liked some of the episodes of Season 9 and it wasn't totally crap but this episode?; wow... This episode is almost like a wonder, in that it's like watching a building collapse before your very eyes. Additionally, this would also prove to be a sign of the things to come; things that wouldn't be so easily reversed.
It's like Mike Scully said "This episode is the beginning of a new era; you can either join us or wallow in your nostalgic filth.".
The first thing you'll notice watching this episode is the radically different atmosphere, in that the dynamic feels more a sitcom that's been on the air for an ungodly amount of time rather then the show we've come to know and love. Additionally, there is also a lot more wacky moments and simplistic jokes/gags then you expected; making it more into a cartoon that kids would watch at 4:00 PM then anything resembling The Simpsons. Had Mike Scully continued as showrunner, this would of moved to Cartoon Network or Nickelodeon and any sensibilities the show had would be obliterated; maybe it's best that Scully stepped down, it would of been awkward for Homer to say "Hey Moe, give me a root beer!".
Anyways; the wacky moments consist of 85% of the episode; that means that you'll be watching Homer and Bart throw something, shake something, do something that is not themselves. While there is some smart humor in this (the scenes at the beginning, some (but a small some) of the lines Lisa and Homer say, the scene where Homer is at the statue.), most of it is just humor that people of all ages can get, no intelligence is required to get this, which is just disrespectful to the long-standing Simpsons audience as a whole. The dialog also takes a hitting too; it has become mostly simplistic and overly obvious, case in point the entire thing where Homer argues with Patterson is made so that Patterson is annoyed while Homer is a jerkass; while this may incite a few laughs, it's only because of the way it's portrayed; not because of the content.
Sure, a lot of this episode is funny but it's pathetically funny; in that you can't help but to not laugh at how pathetic it is. From the scenes where Homer gets beaten up backstage to the scenes where Homer is in that office, it just goes to show how low the Simpsons has got. (though I will say the satire of political movies is somewhat good.) You're laughing but you're also feeling pain and shame that comes with the laughter; this is the beginning of the Simpsons low point and you can't help but to watch it unfold before your very eyes.
Homer may have been a jerkass in earlier episodes but this is the first episode where it's used as a driving plot point. At no point in the episode does Homer feel bad for his actions (except in small points but those points are miniscule in comparison to the entire episode) and everything that he does is designed to irritate other people and to make him look like a super fool that people cannot relate to. I guess the intention is that people want to cheer when Homer get his comeuppance but why should we do that when we should cheer for Homer whenever he does something good. Some points are there that show off some of Homer's old personality (like his attempts to be cool) but even those points are marred with jerkassery that just taints those moments.
The town of Springfield feels less dynamic and more random per lack of a better term. I mean why is Patty & Selma in the sex offenders line (for a joke that would of been funny had people not noticed this stuff) have they offended some men, have the come on to a lot of men; why are they in that line? The various characters we come to know and love appear in various places but that's only to serve as background characters (it may have something to do with Springfield but even then...) and some of these characters do stuff that aren't even themselves. There are a few bright spots though; Moe, Ned and Quimby go through mostly untarnished, in fact those three characters help provide some of the best moments of the episode in an episode that desperately needs them.
Let's not forget about The Simpson family. Marge feels less like a housewife and more as a go-getter who is trying to be a hip housewife/mom but failing hard. Bart acts less like a kid and more like a teenage roommate living in the house; Lisa is acting somewhat stuck up but she suffers the least from the changes (as I said before, some of the best lines are provided by her) while Maggie is barely ever seen. Compare this to earlier seasons where The Simpsons felt more like a family; it's like looking into a mirror where everything is warped, there's smears all over the mirror and there is one spot which looks like someone spilled black paint over it, that's how awkward it is. The Simpsons in this episode are not a family, they're just cartoon characters.
The plot itself is simple and has tons of potential but as insisted in this review it is wasted. Obviously Homer wants to be the trash man due to an issue he has with the trash men so he elects himself, manages to get himself elected, screws himself up, sings one of the best Simpsons songs and moments in history ("The Trashman Can") and then screws himself up even more. That would be good and all but the problem with this is that the transitioning of the plot is off; rarely do we get any reason to care for Homer's mission (except for the scene in the beginning), all we get is gag after gag after gag after gag after gag with barely any plot inbetween; we need plot in order for us to get invested in the plot, we can't have gag after gag after gag after gag, unless you're the kind of person who likes that stuff...
Not adding to that is the fact that the plot focuses on extravagant moments rather then modest moments. I mean we have moments which just seem to be set in area which is filled to the brim with visuals and while that may be cool and all, there are too many of these moments and they somehow serve to draw attention away from the jokes just in case people don't find them funny, because visual stimulation is always funny! The plot also feels the need to end on something extravagant and while it may of been a good idea at the time, the way it's exploited and the way it leads up to it hurts the plot and just exposes whatever flaws the episode has left. That idea is the city being so filled with trash that they have to move the city itself; the idea of moving the city is interesting and some of it does work but ultimately it's a waste because it's an undeserved conclusion and an conclusion that isn't super-funny at that; that conclusion ultimately became a symbol of Scully's domination, being referenced as if it were a part of the continuity. One of Simpsonsfan scripts contained a mention to this very moment, and while it may just be one odd user; the fact remains that there are other users who do the very same thing.
So is this Milestone episode one the best ever? Not even close. In fact this is one of the worst episodes to ever grace the Simpsons. It's wonderful in a "how the hell do people find this funny" way and this episode does serve a purpose; being used in university classes to find out what went wrong and how people can like this. The entire episode is like the shape of things to come; the radically changed dynamic, the dumbed down jokes, the plots that are more gag based then anything else and a sense of cheapness. There are some bright spots (some of which were evident in the Scully seasons as he wasn't completely 100% a waste.) but some bright spots isn't enough to save this episode. I'll admit, this is interesting but mainly due to the stigma surrounding this episode, if it didn't have that then it'd be worthless.
Also a U2 guest appearance; really? That is definitely one of the most cringeworthy points of the episode; having them reappear at various times instead of letting them be definitely did not help the episode. Some of it was interesting but again, it sticks out at you like a sore thumb in the worst possible way.
Trash of the Titans
I think this was quite a good episode, but got a few faults with it.
1. (Good) Quite funny. Had me laughing all the way through.
2. ( Bad) I have the Season 9 DVD, so I can see deleted scenes. I wonder if you've seen th Milhouse part of the song? They should have left in the regular show.
3. (Good) The song is a quite good...
4. (Bad) ...While being cheesy.
Overall though, 4.5 out of 5
The greatest joy of life is sax.
"May your new sax bring you years of d'oh!
This episode is a guilty pleasure of mine. Sure Homer is a jerkass, but the show was still rife with funny moments. Some of you guys hate the ending, which I totally understand, but I found it funny in 1998 and I still find it funny today.
I grew up enjoying Scully's episodes (I was 7 after all) so I find myself being another Scully apologist when it comes to his stuff.
(I feel like I just told the world my dirtiest secret, but I'm glad it's off my chest)
Bear: I'm Sir-Loves-A-Lot. The bear who likes to love.
Homer: They didn't have Lord Huggington?
Marge:It's the same bear Homie.
Homer: I guess
Bear: I love you (kick), I Love-(kick), I-(kick)
Garbageman: Didn't you learn anything fom Love Day?
Homer: That was yesterday, moron!
Lisa: Yeah you're always telling me and Bart to apologize.
Homer: Yeah, but I'm always secretly disappointed when you do.
Homer: It's just like David and Goliath. Only this time David won.
Lisa's brain: I know, I heard it too. Here's some music.
Homer: Lisa, do I have my pants on?
Homer I want to run for sanitation commissioner, and tell the fatcats upstairs, things are going to change in this town.
Wiseguy: OK, but this is where you register as a sex offender
Moe: Aw Jeez, there's always a line.
Bono: The man's talking about waste management. That affects the whole damn planet.
The Edge: Aah here we go. What do you say we slip out to Moe's for a pint?
Adam Clayton: Can I come?
The Edge: No.
Adam Clayton: Wankers.
Moe: Wow, hey you didn't pay for the beer.
Homer: Can't someone else do it?
Moe: Ohh very good (cocks shotgun), seriously give me the money.
Highlights include U2's guest appearance, Homer as the "Potato Man", Steve Martin's speech, Love Day (and Loveland), as well as the song.
Last edited by hutz; 04-25-2012 at 06:43 PM. Reason: Somebody cut my brakes
And of course, it's much, much easier writing an episode that appeals to the lowest common denominator, or to kids with an undeveloped sense of taste, than it is to be satirical, that's why so many kids who got hooked during the Scully era have now become his biggest apologists. Granted the current Jean standard isn't too much better, but at least he doesn't usually have characters I want to stab with an ice pick.
To quote Dan Castelenetta, the voice of Homer: "I meet people and they're like 'Homer, he's my hero!' ...it's truly a sad sate of affairs in America, indeed."
Well, ya'know if you stay positive and forget about trivial things like "proper characterization," "Satire," and "emotional depth" watching new Simpsons episodes can be a seemingly enjoyable lie.
I find that if Homer gets some sort of comeuppance or redemption for his actions, or learns from them, that the jerkass characterization is acceptable.
For example he is something of a dick in Dead Putting Society, but he pays in the end (ruining Marge's sunday dress and losing some dignity in the process).
His characterization in THIS episode doesn't offer this redeeming quality.
I disagree Le Jake about kids having an undeveloped sense of taste as I loved all the Simpsons episodes that came before this one. I sensed a change in the tone of the show around this time, but it wasn't as earth shattering to me as it may have been to others.
There was a decline during Scully's tenure, but it was not nearly as steep to me, as a fan who watched episodes in syndication (and out of order), as it may have been to a fan who watched them in order.
The writing wasn't lowest common denominator either, as it continued to deliver consistently entertaining and funny episodes.
To quote Dan Castellaneta "I think it changes organically to stay fresh"
btw you misspelled Dan Castellaneta's name. (a little trick double L only, not T or N)
Last edited by hutz; 02-25-2012 at 09:35 AM.
Wow, I would not expect this episode to have so many people who hate it. I can't think of single person I know in the real world (ie: not online) who doesn't consider this episode to be an absolute classic. As for me, its easily one of my favorites out of the entire series' run.
^what he said. 5/5!
SNL changing is one thing; the Simpsons is another. It can change if it had good writing, good sense of humor and a good sense of what's relevant. To catch up to something that's new and hip doesn't say much about America's favorite animated family.
Also, I hate the notion that because Homer was a jerk during the first 8 seasons, it's perfectly justifies EVERY time he's a jerk afterwards. Homer during the first 8 seasons was like an immature little kid who wasn't aware he was being a jerk. Scully created the self-aware Homer who was intentionally being rude, redemption or not.
I can't believe I rated this a 5/5 6 years ago. Although I find TFD's ardent criticism of this episode, as if Homer is supposed to act restrained and normal, quite amusing. I dislike jerkass homer as much as the next person, and his behaviour in this is obviously very bad, and exaggerated. But looking at episodes like "Homer goes to College", "Lisa on Ice", "Two Bad Nieghbours" and "Homer's Enemy", there isn't much difference. I can see where the suggestion Homer cut his brakes will annoy some people, as well as moving the town, the ending of this episode really blows. It totally lets it down as I feel the actual skeletal plot is really good, akin in some ways to LETS, the only thing ruining it is the few times Homer was a dick.
But I see Patterson/Homer like Grimey/Homer. I know Jake hates both episodes but there are instances where Homer's jerkass behaviour can lead to some hilarious chemistry with normal, realistic characters.
The garbageman song was enjoyable, the love day intro was quite clever and amusing. "Didn't you learn anything from Love Day" is brilliant. And the election race is quite good. There are a couple of scully era episodes that are let down by some annoying moments, otherwise with really good plots like "Lisa the Skeptic" and "They saved Lisa's Brain". I think this one is one of the better efforts from season 9. I'd give it a 4/5.
I disagree about some of your opinions Le Jake, but I can see where you're coming from.
In response to your second point Zombies, I don't think that the writing was as good as the classic era, but I don't think the show went from 100 to 0 just like that.
I posted in another thread that the great moments that Mike Scully and Al Jean had given to the show were plentiful, but their lows were embarassing.
The episode you noted is one of my least favourite episodes ever. I do want to make it clear that I prefer an ending like Duffless, over an ending like Computer Wore Menace Shoes any day of the week.
The problem was that most of the writers who had that sensibility were gone during the Scully era ( Oakley and Weinstein, Mike Reiss) or too busy(James L. Brooks) and a writer like John Swartzwelder was having his scripts rewritten without him.
Does this excuse the fact that that the show declined? Probably not, but Scully still had to hand in his episodes on time, good or not.
I would put about a third of David Mirkin's first Season (5) on par with Mike Scully's first season. The only difference is Scully didn't have the sensibility do build up like Mirkin did and so he did let standards go down.
[QUOTE=goodfella;2915849]I can't believe I rated this a 5/5 6 years ago. Although I find TFD's ardent criticism of this episode, as if Homer is supposed to act restrained and normal, quite amusing. I dislike jerkass homer as much as the next person, and his behaviour in this is obviously very bad, and exaggerated.[quote]
No, I don't want a sedated Homer, I want a Homer where his anger is ONE ASPECT of his character, not his ENTIRE character. I know Homer was never a nice and pleasent person, first, but he wasn't totally batshit insane, either.
Homer Goes to College: Worst episode of the Mirkin eraBut looking at episodes like "Homer goes to College", "Lisa on Ice", "Two Bad Nieghbours" and "Homer's Enemy", there isn't much difference.
Lisa on Ice: Homer's behavior is a parody of a competitive parent, a more exagerated version of "Dead Putting Society". There's nothing wrong with his behavior and it fits the context of his character.
Two Bad Neighbors: Did someone take Season 11 episode and place it in s7!?
Homer's Enemy: Homer's stupidity was exagerated to where it made him unlikable for me (he was never really 'angry.')
Homer being angry doesn't make stupid, Homer being ONLY angry for no logical reason other than to be a dick is NOT funny.But I see Patterson/Homer like Grimey/Homer. I know Jake hates both episodes but there are instances where Homer's jerkass behaviour can lead to some hilarious chemistry with normal, realistic characters.
BTW, Homer was an asshole in Lisa's Substitute, but he wasn't aware he was being an asshole and that episode is the best episode of the Simpsons, IMO.
I really didn't notice Homer acting like a dick in "Trash of the Titans" until I signed up here and noticed that things like that turned people off. Not that I disagree, I find the Patterson/Homer vote campaign to be really funny, I usually would never tolerate it unless it was. Apart from rattling a bird cage, and the insinuation he cut someone's brakes I really can't think of anything that bad. Surely him hiding the waste under the ground was a stupid thing but he didn't know it was stupid. I think the progression from the first act to second was very nice here too. Homer had a real purpose to become Sanitation Commisioner. He did whatever he could to win the election, ok the "poltical satire" wasn't as close in terms of wit as "Two Cars in every garage etc" or "Sideshow Bob Roberts" but it was defintley one of the better Homer gets a job episodes in the Scully era.
For some reason Homer's behaviour in "Lisa on Ice" annoys me more greatly in that episode than here. I can see he is the social commentary on pushy parents but shunning his own children for not being good at sports is something a lot worse in general to rattling a bird cage and being responsible for moving a town. As for "Two Bad Neighbours", Homer's rivalry with George Bush escalates, he doesn't act like a jerkass right away, he is given reason to by the other character, he tries to reason with him and when he doesn't he takes it further. In some respescts thats a parody of over protective parents, and a better one to the parody in "Lisa on Ice" of a competetive parent. He doesn't want anyone else touching/punishing his son, he reacts angrily and takes it further. He isn't the one that starts the conflict at all.
"Homer goes to College", fair enough there is a LOT of stonger episodes in seasons 5 & 6 than that, but I would rate this above "Bart's Inner Child" and "Lady Bouvier's Lover". The prank phone call to the dean makes me laugh everytime.
Point is also, there were always moments when Homer acts like an inbecile, throughout the classic era, yet you blame "Homer's Enemy" for being the main influence towards Homer's character in the Scully era. Homer didn't know he was being an asshole is "Homer's Enemy" eiher, he was trying to be friendly, like the offish buffoon he is, and then he gets offended by Frank Grimes and tries to win his respect in the Plant competition. This to me is one of the few instances when Homer being a jerkass is viable, for purpose of humour and plot progression.
As Homer said: "It's funny cuz it's true!". I've seen some pretty obnoxious parents and LoI did a decent job making fun of those types. As for Two Bad Neighbors, I thought the whole episode was stupid, not because of Homer himself.For some reason Homer's behaviour in "Lisa on Ice" annoys me more greatly in that episode than here. I can see he is the social commentary on pushy parents but shunning his own children for not being good at sports is something a lot worse in general to rattling a bird cage and being responsible for moving a town.
Homer wasn't a jerkass in Homer's Enemy, his stupidity was annoyingly cranked to 11 in order to offset Grimes's "normalcy". Like Homer nearly drinking a beaker of acid that just happened to be in the lunch room and him trying to eat Grimes's lunch were...just too stupid to be funny, IMO. However, he wasn't any meaner than normal.Homer didn't know he was being an asshole is "Homer's Enemy" eiher, he was trying to be friendly, like the offish buffoon he is, and then he gets offended by Frank Grimes and tries to win his respect in the Plant competition. This to me is one of the few instances when Homer being a jerkass is viable, for purpose of humour and plot progression.
didn't you guys learn anything from Love Day?
I can see you find the obnoxious, jackass Homer hee-larious, so I guess me trying to explain why it's not funny would be like me trying to explain the pros of an iPod to someone that's Amish.
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