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Thread: Rate & Review: "The Clown Stays in the Picture" (YABF05)



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  1. #1
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    Rate & Review: "The Clown Stays in the Picture" (YABF05)



    Season 30, Episode 14
    Original Airdate: February 17, 2019
    Writer & Showrunner: Matt Selman
    Director: Timothy Bailey
    Synopsis: Krusty reveals the untold story of his past in his movie "The Sands of Space." While working as personal assistants on the movie, Bart and Lisa learn about the early years of their parents' relationship.

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    Last edited by Brad Lascelle; 04-29-2019 at 05:02 PM.

  2. #2
    Bring on the men Financial Panther's Avatar
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    Man, this was boring as hell. I was never big on Krusty episodes, and this wasn’t any different. Krusty just isn’t a likable character most of the time, and he was a plain jerk throughout this episode. I can only take so much of him being that way, and this episode had far too much of it. I didn’t laugh once throughout this episode; it didn’t feel like it even attempted any jokes. And what was up with the Bart, Lisa, and Maggie cacti? They were just weird. I don’t know what else to say. Just a boring, bad episode. 1/5
    Favorite and least favorite by season
    1. Krusty Gets Busted There’s No Disgrace Like Home 2. Bart Gets an F Dead Putting Society 3. Homer at the Bat Like Father, Like Clown 4. Brother From the Same Planet Krusty Gets Kancelled 5. Cape Feare Lady Bouvier’s Lover 6. Homer Badman Another Simpsons Clip Show 7. King-Size Homer Lisa the Iconoclast 8. Homer’s Enemy El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer 9. Bart Carny The Trouble With Trillions 10. Thirty Minutes Over Tokyo Homer Simpson in: “Kidney Trouble” 11. Guess Who’s Coming to Criticize Dinner? Hello Gutter, Hello Fadder 12. HOMЯ Tennis the Menace 13. Tales From the Public Domain She of Little Faith 14. The Dad Who Knew Too Little Helter Shelter 15. I, Annoyed Grunt)-bot Bart-Mangled Banner 16. A Star is Torn On a Clear Day I Can’t See My Sister 17. My Fair Laddy Bonfire of the Manatees 18. The Haw-Hawed Couple You Kent Always Say What You Want 19. Funeral for a Fiend All About Lisa 20. Gone Maggie Gone The Good, the Sad and the Drugly 21. The Bob Next Door The Color Yellow 22. Donnie Fatso Love is a Many Strangled Thing 23. The Falcon and the D’ohman A Totally Fun Thing That Bart Will Never Do Again 24. Hardly Kirk-ing Moonshine River 25. The War of Art What to Expect When Bart’s Expecting 26. Sky Police Let’s Go Fly a Coot 27. Halloween of Horror Lisa With an ‘S’ 28. There Will Be Buds Moho House 29. Springfield Splendor Throw Grampa From the Dane

  3. #3


    Quote Originally Posted by Financial Panther View Post
    Man, this was boring as hell. I was never big on Krusty episodes, and this wasn’t any different. Krusty just isn’t a likable character most of the time, and he was a plain jerk throughout this episode. I can only take so much of him being that way, and this episode had far too much of it. I didn’t laugh once throughout this episode; it didn’t feel like it even attempted any jokes. And what was up with the Bart, Lisa, and Maggie cacti? They were just weird. I don’t know what else to say. Just a boring, bad episode. 1/5
    The idea that Homer and Marge were as young as they looked in that episode in the late 1980s...

    I'm not a big fan of the episode, either, but I found it to be more of a below average to average episode than a bad or terrible one.


    ENOUGH WITH FUCKING KRUSTY. When was the last time they gave Skinner or Chief Wiggum an episode?

  4. #4
    Newbie MagicalBender's Avatar
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    Thumbs Down It wasen't bad, but wasent good.

    It was a below average episode. I would of loved an episode about moe or someone like that. Hopefully the next episode will be better.

  5. #5
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    I didn't hate this episode, but it's yet another sub-par Selman effort. It really feels like his luck has finally run out, because this season, almost nothing in his episodes have been distinguishable from regular Jean efforts. For the most part, it was hard to get engaged in the conflict of this episode, and it feels a bit late for the movies it parodies (Mad Max, right?). And yes, I agree Krusty has been very over-represented in episodes, but at least "Krusty the Clown" added something to his character and was a unique take. This was basically just a thin sitcom plot of "character makes a movie". Shrug.

    2.5/5

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  7. #6
    Done with life BloodySimpsonChibi's Avatar
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    Mostly it was a boring episode although the cacti kids were adorable to be honest #catuslisaisbestlisa
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaine View Post
    I'd imagine patting Lisa on the head would sting, damn kids with their spiky heads.


  8. #7
    Bring on the men Financial Panther's Avatar
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    Cactus Lisa is a prick.


  9. #8
    Done with life BloodySimpsonChibi's Avatar
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    Why do you have to nit-prick everything?


  10. #9
    Mmmmmmmm, floor pie
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    2/5 - yet another flashback episode that didn't really go anywhere, except to include just about every one of the show's background characters.

    The lamb in the traffic accident looks like the one from the petting zoo in "Lisa the Vegeterian."

    The movie script was written by William Goldman and Joe Eszterhas and Elaine Black and Nora Ephron. ("And" instead of "&" means they worked on it separately.)

    In Loving Memory: Simpsons Production Manager Trista Navarro (August 6, 1975 - February 6, 2019).
    The funeral service is on March 2 at Altadena Church of the Nazarene in Altedena, CA. There's a GoFundMe page to raise $10,000 for the funeral expenses.

    Oh, and in case anybody is wondering; Fox did air "Krusty the Clown" out west (it was pre-empted in the East by a few too many crashes at the end of the Daytona 500)
    Last edited by That Don Guy; 02-17-2019 at 08:53 PM.


  11. #10


    Maybe I just don't care about the simpsons anymore.. I tried to give it a chance but nothing kept me entertained, I was just watching the time go by.

    Right off the bat, even as a Marc Maron fan I hate when the simpsons use something from real life, I know this isn't the first instance but to me the simpsons exist in their own universe. I was looking forward to a good Krusty Story when I saw all the simpsonians lined up to work on the production I was worried this was going to turn into a fan service episode but then I saw marge and homer and that really worried me, I was wondering how they were going to shoehorn the simpsons into the story.

    The Cactus kids were a nice touch but the animation and art in that scene was really underwhelming

    I don't know if I'll keep watching the simpsons.. if people are still enjoying the series, then great but at this point I feel like I won't be missing anything, it just looks wrong to me, there's no charm anymore.
    Last edited by Frankbags; 02-18-2019 at 12:29 AM.

  12. #11
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    @Frankbags If this was the calibre of episode they were trotting out every week, I think we'd all quit watching the show right along with you. Thankfully that hasn't been the case.

    There's still plenty of charm to be had. It's just few and far between and I HIGHLY discourage people that feel the way you do from watching episodes during their initial run because of that "I won't be missing anything, why should I even bother wasting my time watching this show any more" factor. Wait for favourable impressions... THEN watch an episode if people you trust deem it worthwhile.
    SEASON 30 RANKINGS
    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

  13. #12
    SuperFriend Kaine's Avatar
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    This is a below average episode, and the sad thing is that its both a flashback episode and written by Matt Selman. Basically I don't even see the point why they had to turn this into a flashback episode at all, they'd have to write around Marge not being able to spend more time with Homer and missing some rather good jokes (Homer laughing at his future self for being bald, and the kids as cactuses). Krusty still acted like the same selfish asshole we knew, the younger secondary characters like Lenny and Carl both looked and acted the same. One of the few characters who looked out of the ordinary as their younger self is Luann. I also felt it hard to believe that Krusty had a hard time making choices, considering that he used to make them in an instant in older episodes.

    I liked the gag with the cops petting adorable zoo animals and Wiggum not getting what a selfie is. I didn't care much for Marc Maron who interviewed Krusty. Krusty portraying as a dog had some funny moments, but it was mostly a chore to watch the scene where he wanted to direct "The Sands of Space" himself. The scene with Krusty firing his director also took to long and wasn't funny. I like that Marge was willing to help which lead to some chemistry with Krusty, though it ended up with Krusty just wanting her to remain his assistant, even if it means losing Homer by ''accident''. The third act was pretty fun with Homer getting more involved and getting him in all sorts of trouble. I kinda liked Bart, Lisa and Maggie talking to Homer as cactuses (keeping an open mind that Homer has no idea who they really are and that he has been hallucinating some weird things). And if they wanted Bart and Lisa to have some kind of role in a flashback, I guess this is one way. The ending was alright, kinda liked that Krusty got annoyed with the theater thinking that his movie is a comedy.

    I agree with others that this episode has been kinda boring with not much humor. For a flashback episode, it didn't feel that ''flashback-y'' at all. And I'm also kinda tired of Krusty episodes where he just acts like a jerk. There were a few positives like the actual plot where Krusty wanted to succeed in making his own movie, where he actually had some passion for to do so. I liked a couple of jokes and most of Marge's scenes where she remains kindful and willing to help Krusty without leaving Homer. I'm actually grateful that this didn't turn into a marriage crisis (or in this case dating crisis) episode. Not much cringeworthy stuff, though somehow I didn't like how Homer kept drinking out of the Bart's head cactus.

    2.5/5
    Episodes rated best and worst from each season:
    1: Krusty Gets Busted/Homer's Night Out 2: The Way We Was/Bart's Dog Gets an F 3: Colonel Homer/Dog of Death 4: Marge vs. The Monorail/So It's Come to This: A Simpsons Clip Show 5: Cape Feare/Bart Gets An Elephant 6: Treehouse of Horror V/Another Simpsons Clip Show 7: Mother Simpson/Homerpalooza 8: You Only Move Twice/The Canine Mutiny 9: Lisa's Sax/The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons 10: Lisa Gets an A/Sunday Cruddy Sunday 11: Behind The Laughter/Beyond Blunderdome 12: Trilogy of Error/The Computer Wore Menace Shoes 13: I Am Furious Yellow/Homer the Moe 14: The Dad Who Knew Too Little/Large Marge 15: The Way We Weren't/Diatribe of a Mad Housewife 16: Thank God Its Doomsday/Mommie Beerest 17: Marge's Son Poisoning/Bonfire of the Manatees 18: Marge Gamer/Revenge is Best Served Three Times 19: Treehouse of Horror XVIII/That 90's Show 20: Gone Maggie Gone/Coming To Homerica 21: O Brother, Where Bart thou?/The Devil Wears Nada 22: Homer Scissorhands/The Fool Monty 23: Holidays of Future Passed/Moe Goes From Rags To Riches 24: Adventures In Baby-Getting/Whiskey Business 25: Brick Like Me/White Christmas Blues 26: Bart's New Friend/The Musk Who Fell to Earth 27: Halloween of Horror/Every Man's Dream 28: There Will Be Buds/Moho House 29: Gone Boy/Throw Grampa from the Dane


  14. #13
    her cocoa is so chuggable PreciousBodilyFluids's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Financial Panther View Post
    Cactus Lisa is a prick.
    you're a misogynist

    i guess in the new timeline, marge & homer don't start having kids until 2009? valid

    0/5 bring back al jean

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  16. #14
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    While I didn't find this episode to be bottom level garbarge it was pretty average. I kinda liked the premise of Krusty being interviewed for a podcast and tells the host about his film vanity project in the late 80's, an adaption of the sci-fi novel 'The Sands Of Space' (infamously deemed unfilmable) which involved many Springfieldians including Homer & Marge in the production crew and took a bad turn when he fired the director on set in Mexico and instated himself as the new one to take full control but not being prepared for the task. While the execution of the story wasn't too inspired, the script being kinda clunky and came off as dull and a little boring at times it had it's moments.

    It held my interest and had a decent a bit of satire towards the film industry (such as with Hollywood's overreliance of dumb comedies in the late 80's and early 90's). It was laid out pretty well and progressed slowly (though it worked for the most part), the timeline was a bit off here as it was the late 80's and Homer and Marge still didn't have any kids (though it didn't bother me due to the floating timeline), I liked that many secondary characters had supporting roles and the dynamic of Krusty and Marge once the former makes the latter his assistant director to help him with the film was interesting (one of the few times with an Krusty & Marge story). The story being framed with Bart & Lisa listening to Krusty on the podcast interview while the school bus is held up (sort of like a framing story within a framing story) felt a little inspired.

    They did go too far Krusty's increasing megalomania and sociopathy to the part of deeming Homer a threat to his and Marge's work relationship and subjecting him to life-threatening tasks before sending him to outright die. I thought they would begin with him being a jerk but getting better once Marge started helping him but he remained a selfish jerk up until the end which sucked. Homer had a few nice moments with Marge but him having an hallucination with cacti that appear as Bart, Lisa and Maggie was pretty dumb & he then gets caught by the cartel, which led to a silly and over the top action climax with Springfieldians attacking the bad guys with the film props before Marge intervenes and offers to trade Homer for the film (which is accepted, but not until Krusty having to be convinced; he was really unlikeable); It felt like it turned into another episode with all this ridiculousness and it kinda took me out of the whole thing for a bit (though I liked the wrap up with the reveal of what happened to Krusty's film).

    There were some decent to nice jokes and gags overall even though the episode was pretty poor in the humor department and the animation was nice and had some good bits with all the scenes set in the Mexican desert (Homer & Marge sitting on the cliff overlooking the film set was a nice shot for one thing), the characterizations were mostly alright despite none standing out as exceptional (though Krusty being this much of a callous jerk was bad and Marge being so gullibly oblivious to Homer getting threatened and put in danger by the unhinged Krusty was just idiotic). I didn't care for the podcast host who played himself (felt like a forced way of having a guest star); the character could've easily been an original one instead of an real-life internet personality and whom they went with was just okay in the role.

    All in all, with an premise like this I think it deserved to be better as the story in itself was a little interesting and not too by numbers even with the loose timeline (kinda felt like a wied mix of 'The 90's Show' and 'Fland Canyon'). The main problems were Krusty getting too unsympathethic with his aim to kill Homer (despite it feeling like it being the point as satire on some directors getting tyrannical),getting more and more ridiculous with Krusty going way too far, Homer's cactus hallucination and the action shenanigans and being on the slow side (I think the pacing needed some work). Despite the flaws it had some aspects that were fine or just interesting so I'd say it's an lower end average episode overall, but not one of the stronger Selman efforts.

    2/5
    Last edited by CousinMerl; 05-31-2019 at 12:01 AM.

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  18. #15
    Deep Frier of Shirts BlueRibbonCommittee's Avatar
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    Group text:
    Unknown: HEY
    Nelson: LOL
    Martin: BRB
    Richard: HEY
    Wendell: OK
    Terri: HI
    Sophie: BRB
    Wendell: JK
    Martin: HI

    Is Sophie Krusty's daughter from "Insane Clown Poppy"?

    Movie posters:
    Beverly Hills Bootcamp
    Spy Babies
    The Leprechaun Clause (featuring the Leprechaun from THOH 12)
    Nerd Mom
    Nun-Jas
    Basketball Dolphin
    Karate Lawyer
    Pope and a Half
    Robo-Bladers
    My Uncle the Nephew

    Troy McClure makes another posthumous appearance, one of the aliens on set is reading a Premiere magazine that says, "Troy, Oh Boy!" and has his picture on it.

    Homer and Marge run past "extras", which Krusty refers to as such when they almost die.

    Homer drinks "Duff Gordo"

    Homer looks for lizards in "El Desierto del Gringo Muerto"

    There is a "Wagaggon" in the background. Callback to Maggagie?

    The Closed Captions mentioned the young Sarcastic Clerk going "Wa-wa!" during the Gracie Music "Shhh!" but it just played the music like normal.

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  20. #16
    Have Brain, Will Travel Wile E. the Brain's Avatar
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    This is bad. I don't know if I found this episode worse than The Girl in the Bus, but it's on the same level of boredom and blandness. Season 30 is seemingly Krusty's season and it's too bad since I'm not a big fan of this character in the latter seasons, but Krusty the Clown was a pretty nice episode so I gave this one the benefit of the doubt... And it's, like I said, a bad one.

    I mean, this is so bland I don't really know what to say about it. For the few things I enjoyed, seeing Krusty so passionate about a book and wanting to do a respectful movie about it is nice, that's a change taking into account the fact his character is most of the time in an "I don't give a shit" attitude. And Marge working with Krusty without leaving Homer behind is neat as well, glad they didn't turn that into a jealousy story. But that's pretty much all I can say for the positive things. Overall, this episode is boring. I don't think I had a single laugh, maybe a couple of chuckles at best. I didn't care about the timeline because we all know it's a floating timeline and we already have seen episodes that change Homer and Marge's past (and other characters past as well), my big problem with that flashback episode is I didn't had the feeling I watched a flashback episode at all. With a few tweaks, the story could have happened in the present and nothing would change so much (basically it's to say that Krusty used to have a career at movies and did kids shows after his fail).

    The content is mostly generic, Krusty is supposed to be sympathetic because he want to make a good movie about the book and don't know how to do it but he's still an annoying selfish person for the most part, and seriously, what's the deal with sociopath Krusty, this is the second time in this season we see him plotting to kill Homer and it's not better this time (though at least he learned something from Marge but this isn't enough). I don't know who Marc Maron is so maybe I missed some jokes about him, but like I said, I didn't had a single laugh during the episode (though the ending with everyone at the mexican theater thinking Krusty's movie is a comedy is pretty funny, and it's somehow relatable since there are a lot of sci-fi movies from the 80's that appear like comedies for some people, considering how cheesy they could appear nowadays). And the climax is too much ridiculous for my taste.

    Just a bland, forgettable episode in my opinion. 1.5/5

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  22. #17
    Grappling with Local Oaf Beggs's Avatar
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    It's an episode that seemingly had a lot of potential, so it's a shame that it ended up being rather bland. I liked the podcast as the framing device for the flashback, and the idea of telling the story of a younger, more motivated Krusty who had a pet project he was passionate about. It ties in with his earlier characterisation of a troubled person but talented performer. Sure, the bit about going back to kid's television and not trying anymore does retcon the earlier episodes where he did care about his TV show and was at least entertaining to kids, but it wouldn't be a flashback episode long past the classic era without some kind of retcon.

    Interestingly, it avoided one of the problems that often plagues modern flashback episodes: transplanting present day characterisation into the younger versions of the characters verbatim. Well, for Homer and Marge, at least. Krusty had too much of the bitter jerk in him, and I think it would've worked better if he'd remained passionate and idealistic through most of the story, only to break down towards the end with the movie going belly up or turning out terribly because Marge decided to quit the project and leave along with Homer, with the failure turning him bitter. They also fell victim to the common trope of younger versions of all the other familiar faces being involved, though it wasn't really a big deal this time.

    Without a bit more of a difference and sympathetic side to Krusty's character, it wasn't as enjoyable or interesting as it could've been. In fact, I'd argue that including Homer and Marge wasn't necessary at all. It really should've been about Krusty as an artist, not a story that almost involved a marriage/relationship crisis (though thankfully they steered clear of tacking that on as well). It made for a couple of good moments in the coda with Bart and Lisa asking Homer and Marge about what it was like to work on the movie, and Krusty sneaking in to see the film in Mexico (along with his remark about closure), but overall, a pretty decent idea went to waste.

    There wasn't a great deal of good humour to carry the episode in the absence of a better executed plot, though a couple of moments stand out. Even though the shootout scene was where the story truly went off the rails, the crew trying to participate and making the ray gun sound effects was funny. Homer's comment about Mexicans loving Halloween because of the skulls, Chief Wiggum playing with the animals and wanting a selfie while not getting the meaning of the word, and the nods to wacky mash-up comedies of the 80s and 90s, are also worth a mention. Beyond that however, not a lot of laughs.

    I'll give it 2/5 as there were moments I liked and the overall idea had merit, but it didn't come together for a particularly good episode. It's disappointing, and while I don't dislike Krusty as others do, I agree they need to give him a rest, at least as a focal point of an episode. Let him fade into the background with a line or two here and there for a while.
    A little less Generic than before.

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  24. #18
    Stonecutter angeldeb82's Avatar
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    Here's Phil Payton's review on the episode.


  25. #19
    Pin Pal Szyslak100's Avatar
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    One of the aspects I like most about some of the contributions written or produced by Selman is the exploration and development of dynamics that had not been considered before, as, for example, it has happened in There Will Be Buds with Homer and Kirk. I mention this because the best of this episode is in what we see between Krusty and Marge, two characters who have interacted only a few times before and who had never faced a plot together. The use of both is decent, since the Clown's pessimism is used against Marge's optimism, finding an intelligent reason to put them together. In addition, it seems appropriate that the relationship is not reciprocal, taking into account the characteristics of each. On the other hand, I appreciate that they tried to give a different approach to the generic in the Krusty-centric episodes. In this case, he lost neither his fame nor his space on television, which is really strange. I want to highlight Bailey's management work. The backgrounds and designs of the characters are amazing.

    Unfortunately, that's all I can highlight here. Honestly, this was a difficult episode to watch. It was too boring. Only a few jokes in the third act worked. I laughed a lot when they show the cook as a dangerous job. Also when the war breaks out between the kidnappers and the citizens of Springfield, who used props. However, this is a very warm outcome for a problem as interesting as a kidnapping. In addition, Selman had already used this resource in the previous season in Homer is Where the Art isn't. The whole podcast issue was tedious; the appearance of Marc Maron was totally forgettable. As a personal appreciation, I also have to say that Krusty takes up too much screen time. And he is not a character that I like to see. It is not characteristic of him to reject a role that offers him money to do what he thinks is right. I also do not understand what was the need for this to be a flashback, when it could calmly have gone by now, and it could even have worked better.

    Sadly, the final result is far below my expectations. Perhaps, a subplot would have made the development lighter. I'm disappointed. 2/5

  26. #20
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by angeldeb82 View Post
    Here's Phil Payton's review on the episode.
    Well unlike most of us he certainly loved it (I had guessed he'd give it around a C so I was surprised). Seems like this is yet another modern episode that critics seem to like while we think it's on the lower side of things.

  27. #21


    Quote Originally Posted by CousinMerl View Post
    Well unlike most of us he certainly loved it (I had guessed he'd give it around a C so I was surprised). Seems like this is yet another modern episode that critics seem to like while we think it's on the lower side of things.
    Yeah, maybe I'm an atypical simpsons fans but I rarely agree with Phil's reviews.. and everyone's a critic, I don't weigh his opinion any heavier than anyone here.

  28. #22
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  29. #23
    SuperFriend Nameless's Avatar
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    Did not enjoy

    ​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- Bart vs. Itchy & Scratchy ​C- Girl's in the Band ​B- I'm Just a Girl Who Can't Say D'oh ​B- D'oh Canada ​C-

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