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Thread: Rate & Review: "The Girl on the Bus" (YABF04)

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  1. #31
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    Kitchener, ON

    Bart's Not Dead - 2.5/5 / Heartbreak Hotel - 1.5/5 / My Way or the Highway to Heaven - 3/5
    THOH XXIX = Intrusion of the Pod-Y Switchers - 1.5/5 / Multiplisaty - 2.5/5 / Geriatric Park - 2/5
    Baby You Can't Drive My Car - 2/5 / From Russia Without Love - 3.5/5 / Werking Mom - 3/5
    Krusty the Clown - 4/5 / Daddicus Finch - 5/5 / 'Tis the 30th Season - 2/5 / Mad About the Toy - 1.5/5
    The Girl on the Bus - 2/5 / I'm Dancing as Fat as I Can - 4.5/5 / The Clown Stays in the Picture - 1.5/5
    101 Mitigations - 3/5 / I Want You (She's So Heavy) - 1/5 / E My Sports - 3.5/5
    Bart vs. Itchy & Scratchy - 4.5/5 / Girl's in the Band - 4/5 / I'm Just a Girl Who Can't Say D'oh - 1/5
    D'oh Canada - 2.5/5 / Woo-hoo Dunnit? - 3.5/5 / Crystal Blue-Haired Persuasion - 1.5/5

  2. #32
    Junior Camper Mikesuper26's Avatar
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    Sep 2017
    New York

    Judging by the overwhelming amount of 3/5 ratings this episode received here, and the overall mediocre tone from the vast majority of reviewers I would say that this episode was simply...boring. While it was far from being the worst Simpsons episode ever made and it likewise is certainly not the worst episode of this season, I found myself mostly unimpressed and uninterested in the story being told on the screen. Lisa being disappointed in her family is nothing new, and although I admit that she is likely very difficult to write for, the lack of any really funny or emotional bits to the story line results in a plot that seems very recycled and mundane. Additionally, the family Lisa idolizes is another group of characters that will likely never be seen again, creating an overall unimportant vibe to the plot itself. Moreover, the continued trend of using voice actors that are clearly older in age then the characters they are attempting to portray never produces any favorable results in my viewing experience, and in this case the result is no different. The characterizations weren't terrible, but I felt Marge was uncharacteristically abrupt and nasty to Lisa when the latter objected to the family eating dinner in front of the TV. Marge has always been a type of glue that holds the family together, and her disinterest in both her daughter's opinion and the healthy lifestyle of her family seemed a bit out of character. Likewise, while not nearly as bad as the terrible "Bart is a sociopath and a dumb loser" jokes from last season, him not caring at all that his sister is too embarrassed of him to say that he even exists and even embracing it seems like a milder attempt by the writers to joke about Bart's supposed worthlessness. The ending with Bart remodeling his room was okay, but it didn't make a whole lot of sense, even for a cartoon. How would he have been able to purchase that TV? Also, how could he buy the alcohol he started serving to people? I imagine his age would be obvious when he started speaking, if his appearance didn't give it away first. I get that Bart has experience entertaining people, but this seemed too farfetched for me to actually believe it.

    Despite the negatives listed above, there were certain aspects of the episode I enjoyed. The episode started off well on the school bus, as I found the lunchbox fight between Bart and Nelson to be amusing. I thought that Bart acting like the mischievous ten year old he is at dinner and screwing with Homer was funny, as was Homer's subsequent reactions to eating overly salty foods. Flanders consistently acting like Homer also produced a laugh from me, though it also made me wonder if we are going to see him actually teaching Bart and his class this season. Homer sending the GIF of himself from season's past was amusing and a good through back.

    What interested me more, both in terms of the amount of attention it got and the actual content of it was the couch gag. Now, when I searched "The Girl on the Bus" on Google, a few reviews and some entries on Simpsons Wiki and Wikipedia came up. When I searched "Thanos Couch Gag," I got a massive amount of articles about it; well over ten articles. Considering the fact that the couch gag of this episode got more interest in it than the episode itself proves us right in rating this episode as a rather pedestrian and mundane experience. Seeing Thanos on the couch right at the beginning of the episode and promptly disintegrating the entire family expect for Maggie caught my attention...only to have that attention wasted for the rest of the episode. The gag itself kind of surprised me, and for reasons I can't entirely explain it just seemed more dark and morbid then most other couch gags, or at least those in recent memory. That is not to say that I disliked it, just that I was taken aback at first. Nevertheless, the amount of discussion regarding the quick seven or so second gag is mind boggling to me. I even saw an analysis of Thanos' mindset in sparing Maggie as saving a child much as he did in the films, though to be fair he did flat out murder two other young kids (Bart and Lisa) just moments prior to sitting on the couch with Maggie. Apparently, Infinity War directors Joe and Anthony Russo enjoyed the gag so much that they posted it to their Instagram account without comment. Never thought I would see so much attention towards a couch gag while the rest of the episode is hardly discussed.

    A very intriguing couch gag, followed by a boring episode. Seeing as though we judge an episode not only on its couch gag but also on the episode itself, I rated it a 3/5.

  3. #33
    Motorized 3t8yb's Avatar
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    Oct 2018
    New Jersey, U.S.

    This episode was almost completely recycled, but after last week's messy endeavor, it came off as reasonably tolerable. Although there were some bizarre bits like Homer becoming Grampa, Homer drinking from the hose, and Bart randomly having a party room, for the most part this episode moved along fine, with not a lot of filler. Sam was such a bland character I was sure she only existed for a token guest voice, but no, it's just Tress. There were some okay jokes in this one; the panic surrounding Homer at dinner before he just says he likes beer got me good. Also, the song was so unmemorable, I actually had to check again after reading these reviews to make sure there really was one. I have nothing against songs in episodes, but this is getting a little out of hand. Didn't they have guest songwriters a few times? If they're going to go song-writing crazy, they should look into that again.


  4. #34
    Junior Camper BartArt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    In the treehouse, out back.

    Well well well, Lil' Lisa has decided at last to be not true to herself and do what makes her happy - in other words - not to be Simpson.

  5. #35
    Moe is their leader. Captain_Smiley's Avatar
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    Feb 2005

    That was a nice episode. No out loud funny jokes but some nice jokes. It's a shame that it got preempted by football.

  6. #36

    Stupid modern simpsons premise, however had some relatively funny things I laughed at, such as homer using his own gif. Nothing special but not as bad as expected. 3/5

  7. Thumbs Up To This Post by: Szyslak100

  8. #37
    Pin Pal John95's Avatar
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    Apr 2017
    Mauston, WI

    What was the point in them even casting Patti LuPone as Sam's mother? They could've just as easily gotten one of their regulars like Tress or Pamela, and it probably would've cost them less too.

    2/5. Kinda bland and unoriginal like everyone else has said, but I'd take this over last week's which I honestly didn't like all that much.
    Family Guy Season 17 Ratings - Married... with Cancer: .5/5 Dead Dog Walking: .5/5 Pal Stewie: 3/5 Big Trouble in Little Quahog: 3.5/5 Regarding Carter: 1.5/5 Stand by Meg: 2/5 Griffin Winter Games: 2.5/5 Con Heiress: 0/5 Pawtucket Pete: 2.5/5 Hefty Shades of Gray: .5/5 Trump Guy: .5/5 Bri, Robot: .5/5 Trans-Fat: 2/5 Family Guy Lite: 1.5/5 No Giggity, No Doubt: 1.5/5 You Can't Handle the Booth: 1/5 Island Adventure: 4/5 Throw It Away: 2/5 Girl, Internetted: 1.5/5 Adam West High: 1.5/5
    American Dad! Season 15 Ratings - Fantasy Baseball: 1.5/5 I Am the Jeans: The Gina Lavetti Story: 0/5 Stan & Francine & Connie & Ted: 0/5 Rabbit Ears: 1.5/5 Jeff and the Dank Ass Weed Factory: 1/5 Lost Boys: 0/5 Shark?!: TBD The Long March: TBD

  9. #38
    Pin Pal Szyslak100's Avatar
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    Jul 2017

    I expected this to be Cohen's third strike this season. But I am pleasantly surprised with the final result. The inexhaustible source of mediocre episodes that is the encounter of Lisa with a new best friend has a new chapter, although this time it leaves us a legacy a little more complete, and it is not precisely because of the story that is told in the episode or by the single appearance character.

    Because, unfortunately, Sam is as inconsequential as other Springfield kids we've only met once and who have come to the show for a brief and inconsequential relationship with Lisa, such as Isabel, Lucas, Tumi, Harper, Brendan, and many others of older seasons. It really bothers me that they continue inventing characters and inviting stars for this role when Janey was a background character for 30 years. I guess I must keep waiting for his chance to be protagonist. But, returning to Sam, it could be defined as Lisa's reflection, but located in the correct family. Both share a great intelligence and certain tastes, but one is supported by his family and nourished by it, and the other is ignored and excluded by aspiring to a different lifestyle. It is a good approach to the main conflict. I can not justify Lisa being ashamed of her family, but I can understand her. Especially, for the superficial and vulgar that were characterized on this occasion.

    The idea of ​​the 'happy ending', and the fact that Sam has been played by Tress MacNeille and not a guest star, makes me have minimal hope that Lisa will finally have a recurring friend. Of course it's just a wish and it's not going to be fulfilled, but it would be interesting. Going back to the episode (I'm constantly taking to the bush, I'm sorry) I liked seeing Lisa really happy with a friend. Also, the roll of lies was well taken. They became untenable and even addictive. This part of the story gave rise to good jokes. I do not find a stain to what we have seen between them. The way they met was nice, they shared moments of happiness and closed the episode together. In addition, there was a justified place for Sam's parents, who got my approval as characters. Richardson and LuPone did a good job, and they received some prominence.

    However, the relationship between the Monroe and Lisa was not the culmination of the episldio. The main conflict was posed in a similar way as in another episode written by Cohen (Lisa Simpson, This Is not Your Life). I do not mind the recycling of frames when we are in the thirtieth season, but this time I have even felt like a copy. The girl is ashamed, the mother cares for it, then shows that he loves her, the girl repents and both are reconciled. Undoubtedly, in season 22 there was a better approach to the situation, but this time it also has an acceptable development, despite the bad characterization of Marge in the first half of the episode. I felt that everything flowed with a certain nature and found a suitable place for Homer and Bart. While the first one seemed intelligent to read a simple card, the second turns his room into a modern place. They have definitely found a good place for both.

    The episode has a surprising amount of fun gags (really funny). The line of 'Sideshow Mom' got me a laugh. All of Flanders' appearances were hilarious, especially his appearance on the Power Plant. And, of course, the callback to Homer Loves Flanders seemed like a fantastic moment. But I do not want to emphasize only the popular scenes. I really liked the ideal version of Lisa's family. It's fantastic how reality is deformed, and the role that finds Bart and Maggie was fun for me. I also liked the transitions between certain scenes in the style of silent films. And the fourth act, for once, I thought it added and did not leave a feeling of useless filling.

    The Girl on the Bus is a funny episode that sins for a totally obvious plot recycling, and for making protagonist a character that, unfortunately, will not appear again in the show. Notorious merit to draw a potential to something that did not mean to have it. Good work, Cohen. We must recognize the merits.

    A strong and unexpected 3/5
    SEASON 30 RANKINGS: Bart's Not Dead: 3/5 / Heartbreak Hotel: 2/5 / My Way or the Highway to Heaven: 3/5 / Treehouse of Horror XXIX: 2/5 / Baby You Can't Drive My Car: 4/5 / From Russia Without Love: 4/5 / Werking Mom: 4/5 / Krusty the Clown: 4/5 / Daddicus Finch: 5/5 / Tis the Thirtieth Season: 2/5 / Mad About the Toy: 3/5 / The Girl on the Bus: 3/5 / I'm Dancing as Fat as I Can: 4/5 / The Clown Stays in the Picture: 2/5 / 101 Mitigations: 4/5 / I Want You (She's So Heavy): 1/5 / E My Sports 4/5 / Bart vs. Itchy & Scratchy: 5/5 / Girl's in the Band: 4/5 / I'm Just a Girl Who Can't Say D'oh: 2/5 / D'oh Canada: 2/5

  10. #39
    Grappling with Local Oaf Beggs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003

    I liked some of the ideas that were in play here. Lisa being embarrassed by her family when she meets a family that's more cultured, breaking the fourth wall with some commentary on farce, and subverting the predictable "everything blows up in the characters face when the lie is revealed" twist that usually comes with a bittersweet or downer ending. Those were some good concepts to play around with.

    Unfortunately, the story didn't really go anywhere or amount to anything. On one hand, having everyone be so understanding is in itself a twist, but it also means there's no real conflict. I'd be tempted to say that Sam barely factoring into the story at all is part of the joke, a clever nod to the way "Lisa gets a new friend" stories usually work out, but even if it is, it's possible to get too meta. Even if it's not the most original plot, it felt like there was more to work with. The direction they went with was kind of interesting in a meta sense and underscores the farcical nature, but it also feels like a wasted opportunity.

    On the other hand, it was carried by some good jokes. I liked the kids mucking up on the bus at the start, and that Lisa grudgingly had some interest in or knowledge of the proceedings ("They'll never unify the belts!"). Ned pretending to be Homer and then getting carried away with it was the best gag for me. It's probably funnier that his imitation was so lousy, but I kind of wanted to hear Harry Shearer do a proper impression, just to know how well he could do it. Bart turning his room into a nightclub was silly and almost a "Hey everyone! Surf's up!" kind of ending, but it also fit the tone of the episode. Homer drinking from the hose in the bedroom, "SIDESHOW MOM!", and Ralph having an astonishingly profound thought were all good too.

    I'm going to join in the crowd of 3/5 ratings, and echo the sentiment that it was alright and a pleasant enough watch thanks to the jokes, but there wasn't much meat to the plot and it turned out to be rather forgettable as a result. It's a shame because as I said, I liked the ideas and it felt like they could've amounted to more even if they're not exactly originally, but what we got was OK. Again, a bit of a wasted opportunity, but some enjoyable humour.
    A little less Generic than before.

  11. Thumbs Up To This Post by: Szyslak100

  12. #40

    What's with all the singing this season? Anyway, not very good at all. 1.5/5.

  13. #41
    Pin Pal Szyslak100's Avatar
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    Jul 2017

  14. #42
    SuperFriend Nameless's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004

    A bland but inoffensive story that contrived to really badly drop the ball in the last two minutes. ​C
    Season 30 Ratings
    Bart's Not Dead C- Heartbreak Hotel ​D My Way or the Highway to Heaven ​D- Treehouse of Horror XXIX ​C- Baby You Can't Drive My Car ​B+ From Russia Without Love ​B- Werking Mom ​C Krusty the Clown ​B Daddicus Finch B+ 'Tis the 30th Season ​D+ Mad About the Toy ​C+ The Girl on the Bus ​C I'm Dancing as Fat as I Can ​C- The Clown Stays in the Picture ​C- 101 Mitigations C+ I Want You (She's So Heavy) ​C E My Sports ​B-

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