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Thread: Rate & Review: "E My Sports" (YABF09)



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  1. #1
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    Rate & Review: "E My Sports" (YABF09)



    Season 30, Episode 17
    Original Airdate: March 17, 2019
    Writer: Rob LaZebnik
    Director: Rob Oliver
    Showrunner: Al Jean
    Synopsis: As Bart begins to excel in video game competitions, Homer discovers a passion for coaching him. Lisa attempts to bring Homer back to reality, but the plan causes chaos.

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    SIMPSONS REDDIT DISCUSSION THREAD

    TV VIEWERSHIP - 0.8 Rating / 4 Share - 2.08 Million Viewers

    R&R Poll Average Score: 3.63 / 5 (as of April 27th / 27 votes)
    IMDB User Rating: 6.5 / 10 (as of April 27th / 223 users)
    Last edited by Brad Lascelle; 04-27-2019 at 05:28 PM.

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  3. #2
    The Devil in Blue Shorts BloodySimpsonChibi's Avatar
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    I guess it was okay. It was nice to see Sophie again.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaine View Post
    I'd imagine patting Lisa on the head would sting, damn kids with their spiky heads.


  4. #3
    Pervert Financial Panther's Avatar
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    This was a fairly enjoyable episode. I always like seeing bonding between Homer and Bart, and while it’s yet another “Simpson gets super good at something really quick,” it didn’t bother me too much. I also liked the guy who was tutoring them on the game who lost his “edge” when he did something wrong. The episode started to go downhill when the dream sequence started, and there was another song. We hadn’t heard one of those lately; I could’ve gone longer without one, though. The trip to South Korea and Homer’s meditation got kind of weird, and he reminded me a little of when he thought he was the Messiah in The Greatest Story Ever D’ohed. But I did like that nobody won the tournament instead of our characters just losing again.

    There were some decent jokes in this episode, although as usual, a few fell flat. The aforementioned tutor scene was good, as was Homer’s talking to Marge and getting her the coffee machine so he could coach Bart. I’d give this episode a low 4/5.
    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


  5. #4


    I did find that, "he's playing with himself" joke amusing and was surprised they put something that risque in there. Otherwise, didn't love it and didn't hate, either. It was okay.

  6. #5


    I didn't like that Homer ruined the match. I'm not a Buddhist. I much prefer the ending of Saddlesore Gallactica because he tells his son to win. Strive to win, damnit! To hell with this pansy Nihilistic ending.

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  8. #6
    Actually an Esquilax Venomrabbit's Avatar
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    Yeah this one fell apart around the mid point, especially when they basically retread Daddicus Finch but with Lisa instead of Bart and then she ends up sabotaging Bart & team's big moment, and then they hate him for some reason. Even though it was Homer and by extension Lisa's fault. It'd be nice if, for once, we got an occasion where Bart leaves something on his own accord and keeping his dignity intact instead of having it ripped from him and scorned by everyone. Like how it goes nearly every time that kind of plot is about Lisa. Hell, iirc even Maggie gets the former treatment in episodes like Whistler's Father.


  9. #7


    by modern simpsons standards that was a good episode.. I was worried that it would shift to a lisa story when she expressed her issues with homer and marge.. overall it was a well structured story and wasn't totally insulting to someone familiar with e-sports.

  10. #8
    Pin Pal John95's Avatar
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    Yeah, I would've liked this more had they not completely crapped themselves with that ending. Bart is pretty much blamed for something that was 100% not even his own fault!

    1.5/5, 2 for the poll.
    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

  11. #9
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    I adored the M*A*S*H parody (which evoked similarities to the chaotic fallout to Springfield Splendor last season) and Rob Oliver knocked it out of the park with the animation direction tonight. But this was definitely an episode in desperate need of being allowed to breathe and unfortunately we wound up with a rather unsatisfactory conclusion as a result. I almost feel like this concept would have been better handled with a double-length episode format similar to The Great Phatsby.

    For all of the research they put into nailing the faithfulness of the League of Legends send-up, it felt like Bart had very little agency in this storyline and they felt compelled to overwhelm us with narrative bloat on the off-chance it didn't fly. I thought all of the kids were utilized exceptionally well and the voice direction was on point as well. Just could have benefited from some of the fat from the second act excised and a little more focus on the payoff to really make this ep a winner but I still consider it to be one of the better efforts from this season.

    I rather enjoyed that Oliver gave Lisa her own variant of the Homer flipping out scene from Season 28's The Town. He never fails to excel when depicting fluid animation of a character going off the deep end. The eye twitching in the gradual buildup was a nice touch.
    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


  12. #10


    The two cutaways are the beginning were funny and the storyline was interesting. However, I didn't really like the ending cause it felt kind of rushed. That ending gag was also unnecessary. I liked the ending gag with Bart and Skinner in detention better.

    4/5

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  14. #11
    Actually an Esquilax Venomrabbit's Avatar
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    Thinking on it, I feel there's one thing that may have made the ending more tolerable. Have some hint, just one that hinted that Bart was unhappy. Like having Homer threaten to cut him unless he did some unreasonable training schedule or something. Then at least Lisa's actions could have been some tradeoff. I think they wanted to act like she'd saved Bart in the long run but that's not how it was presented at all and it looks more like she just wanted to spitefully screw him over for taking attention away from her... y'know, exactly like she did to him in Daddicus Finch, she didn't even get left bloodied and bruised for it either but I guess that's still not good enough. Guess Barthood was still right, his life would be much better without her in it. Heck, none of the family even tell the other kids off. Though this was the same episode that implied everything would be perfect without Bart to the point where even Homer, Patty and Selma get along. He really IS the Meg of this show isn't he?


  15. #12
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    I liked the episode at first but felt it fell off in the latter part of the second half so it's half a good episode, I'd say. I was a little skeptical at first with the plot being that of Homer "punishing" Bart after a prank by buying him a gaming computer (accessories and all) to keep him occupied and possibly become a better person which leads into Bart becoming an obsessed gamer which soon evolves into Homer becoming the coach of Bart's E-sporting team, but such an modern, up to date plot (with how huge gaming competitions hav become) did seem to work pretty well with Bart and Homer bonding and the former getting support from his parents and being good at something (which is a nice pace of change) which surprised me quite a bit, but then it started regressing and the fairly unnecessary Lisa plot kicked in (feels like they forgot about it for a long time there).

    The father-son bonding plot was done well and I like that there wasn't any unnecessary drama or unpleasantness, there was some nice dialogue and there were some amusing moments (and I liked how Marge bribed her by buying a kitchen appliance with Bart's share of the prize money from an gaming competition his team won (also nice to see Sophie, Krusty's daughter again). The part with the antisocial gaming tutor (The Detonator was amusing (liked how it ended with him losing his enthusiasm due to something so minor) and Homer's dream where he meets the dads of other sports stars who sings abut living through you kids was enjoyable. It was going well until Lisa's subplot got going and she was complaining about Bart getting attention and appreciation and her manipulating Marge into taking her with the family to South Korea (where the gaming finals are held). Felt like she should've been happier towards Bart and more supportive (it kinda felt like she cried that "It should be about me" in that scene with Marge). She often gets attention so she should've let Bart have this one, though she did have a point abut Homer taking his coaching role too seriously.

    So anyway, her going along with them (to fulfill a life desire to visit South Korea country) and taking Marge, Homer and Maggie to a Buddhist temple (coinciding with Bart and his team at the competition, where Homer should be as the coach) and teaching them to reach enlightenment and to see the meaninglessness of attachments to any living pursuits was a nice bits, but then Homer reaches a zen state and ruins the competition and causes a riot by shutting off all power didn't work; with him going off like this it felt like Lisa had intent to ruin for Bart and getting the high ground when it was unintentional with her later reaction in mind, though they way they set it up raised warning flags and that was a problem (the timing made it no favors). Then they end with Bart getting hated by the rest of the team (Why? It wasn't his fault the competiton was ruined), Homer bing bitter and tries to reach zen again and Lisa not talking to Bart and apologizing for inadvertedly causing what happened. What an depressing ending.

    So anyway, the pacing was nice (it had a good buildup and was a bit on the slower side but it worked), there were a bunch of good jokes and gags throughout (Skinner not being able to let go of the prize money, Lenny falling down the stairs and injuring himself due to Homer not being there to catch him, the Detonator section and some more) and the animation was well done overall with some nice coloring, character movements and so forth. The characterizations were decent, mostly Homer and Marge (though them making fun of Lisa being envious and laughing at her was too cruel) but Bart also had some nice moments (though warped a bit into a hardcore gamer, though what was up with his starter moustache at the beginning?) and Lisa too but maybe a bit less so (as I feel that the scene with Marge when she threw a tantrum and tried to appeal to her mother was a bit too exaggerated, but other than that she was fine and behaved understandably). The supporting cast also had their moments and they all felt rather decently in character which was good.

    Overall, like I said at the beginning it was a half good episode. It was going so well with the whole gamer plot with Homer as Bart's coach and Bart having a good time, growing closer to his parents and proving to be good at something and actually maybe becoming a better kid (to Marge's appreciation) but then Lisa ended up spoiling all (unintentional probably, but the way it came out made me shake my head) and left a bad taste, especially with the kicker of Bart getting hated by the rest of the team and Lisa not intervening, nor was Homer showing any empathy towards his son (it was kinda nihilistic in a sense). It still had a lot stuff I liked well enough as said but Lisa's subplot and the unpleasantness it brought into the story with the ending with it's poor timing soured things (wish they could incorporated her into the plot in a positive way), though some moments late on were decent and a little fun (such as the riot set to the theme from MASH).

    Not a bad episode overall, but that second half with the Lisa plot not fitting in and it all wrapping up on an depressing note was a bummer. There were lots of better ways to end the episode but with the direction they took with Lisa's plot (which was built up pretty poorly) what happened was inevitable (I would've liked something like another conflict in the last part, something that maybe directly concerned Bart and his gaming and felt more natural and not let him end up an undeserved punching bag for no good reason; he really cannot catch a real break nowadays, can he? The writers should loosen up and let him win more).

    3.5/5 (if it had continued with the Bart-Homer plot from the first half, saved the Lisa subplot for it's own episode, had the whole family supporting Bart, a better conflict and ended it on an positive note it could've been an 4/5).
    Last edited by CousinMerl; 03-22-2019 at 09:08 AM.


  16. #13
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    @CousinMerl I will raise issue with your contention that Lisa "gets attention from her parents way more often than Bart". That's clearly not the case most of the time. They certainly respect her more than Bart but the vast percentage of their parenting time (arguments and strife included) is Bart-driven. Homer devoting all of his time and energy to Bart's burgeoning pro gaming career and Marge having her time consumed with Maggie would naturally leave her feeling neglected. Especially after Homer doled out a wad of cash for Bart's "punishment" in getting him a high-end gaming rig and her parents laughing off her threats to misbehave so she would get treated equally.

    I think they set up the conflict of her lamenting her brother's trip to South Korea effectively and, in fact, had her act like a kid (which is something we WANT to see out of Lisa, right?) by throwing a bit of a tantrum at the revelation of them going to a dream destination without her. And, even then, most of her fascination at the temple seemed to be in sharing the Buddhist experience with her parents... something that they've largely been dismissive of for the past 17 or so seasons since Lisa converted. She never gets her parents to involve themselves in her religion the way she has the opportunity to do here and they're grateful for it.

    I think the fundamental problem is that the extremely narrow pacing of that final act; this episode was legitimately convoluted and would have really stood to benefit from either being extended to a double-length or cutting out the legitimately amusing Detonator subplot. The time crunch conveyed the impression (in your case, at least) that Lisa was intentionally distracting Homer and keeping him away from and/or wanted to sabotage Bart's competition. I don't believe that was the case at all. In fact, her comment on the plane ride at the end kind of inferred that Homer didn't take away the right message from it.
    Last edited by Brad Lascelle; 03-18-2019 at 05:00 AM.

  17. #14
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    @Brad Lascelle, yeah, I'll admit I exaggerated (I tend to write a bunch of stuff and then trim it down with some sporadic edits as the episode has sunk in a bit more), though in the modern era it has come off as she gets a bit more attention and appreciation from Homer and Marge and Bart gets left out as previously discussed (and I have to agree that them laughing at her desperation to misbehave to get something was cruel and just made her even more upset and determined).

    As for Lisa's subplot, I don't think the inclusion of it came out too well, much as it did come into the story so late in the game and felt like it should've been it's own episode instead of pararell to Bart's competition (I really liked her trying to have her parents tap into the spiritual and another travel episode would've been nice). As for her behavior with the obnoxious behavior, the tantrum and essentially manipulating her mother into letting her go to South Korea too was a little on the nose for my taste, but it was nice to see her being more like a kid and I don't blame her for wanting to get something out of this whole gaming debacle.

    Also, I didn't fully think that she intentionally wanted to ruin Bart (since it wasn't confirmed so therefore I did say that it could've been unintentional) but the way it played out it came off as that a little bit like you say (and her displaying disappointment in Homer's actions and her end comment to him showed that it very likely wasn't the case, but she still should've been supportive towards Bart, especially after her temple trip with her parents leading to the ruination of the competition and him getting spite from his teammates). It was definitely an overstuffed episode that tried to take too big of a bite and that mean-spirited feeling it gave with the ending was unfortunate.

    Again, I wish Lisa's story here was it's own episode, temple visit, spirituality and all as it did feel like it deserved to, not being a bit part here and clashing poorly with Bart's main plot and which made some stuff come out wrong and send the wrong signals about Lisa (which made me a bit confused as said). It came off as jarring so the writing was kinda shoddy.
    Last edited by CousinMerl; 03-18-2019 at 01:46 PM.

  18. #15
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    One other impression I have which may have compounded the storytelling issues with the Korea trip part of the episode is that I get the impression that subbing Milhouse out with Faker might have been a promotional idea pitched after the core script had been completed so they took an extra minute out of the episode's narrative to include a scene where Homer went through the trouble of explaining why he was being replaced.

  19. #16
    Actually an Esquilax Venomrabbit's Avatar
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    It may not have been confirmed but honestly, it doesn't feel out of character for her at this point. Even in the early seasons she can get pretty darn spiteful towards Bart. Again it would have went down better if it was Bart being made miserable, then perhaps consoling him after about how she'd done something good for him in the long run or something, seeing the signs of Homer trying to live through Bart's accomplishments and constantly pushing him, but then in the ep proper, Bart didn't seem to have a problem with it at all. Or hell, if Bart's team (and Bart) were directing their ire onto Homer since he ruined everything. There's so many ways it could have gone but they really went the most mean-spirited route. Again, he really is becoming a Meg at this point.


  20. #17
    SuperFriend Kaine's Avatar
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    Solid episode. Its about time that they do a premise around the e-sport scene, which has been a huge thing for a long time. I'd say they did most of the jokes fitting the scene quite well with stuff like the e-sport coach and Homer not getting how much money the kids can earn by winning.

    The first act starts off well with the family playing board games and actually getting along since Bart is not around. The writers are apparently living with the time just enough that gamers use words like ''noob'', ''get rekt'' and ''GG''. I don't buy that Bart was growing a small mustache though. Its good to see Sophie again (who is still voiced by the new voice actress) and how they portrayed ''Conflict of Enemies'' as a parody to League of Legends. I thought it was pretty funny how Homer and Marge don't believe that Lisa can possibly act badly. Bart moving his PC to the bathroom felt so unnecesary for me to buy. I liked the small gag with the team building in the nuclaire power plant and Homer not getting that Bart can win money with e-sports. The school competition was good enough for a gag with Skinner having a hard time to hand over the price money, also kinda liked how Homer kept using coffee to get Marge's approval of turning Bart into an e-sporter.

    The new character was a decently portrayed e-sport coach who didn't remain for to long. Liked his visit to the bathroom and how he was okay with Millhouse casually asking to dance around his corpse. I didn't get Marge's concern that Bart could turn out bad. I liked most of Homer's dream sequences with the other sport dads.. but did they really need yet another musical song? Liked the next e-sport match that came afterwards and the Canadian team not understanding the announcer until the starts to talk with an accent. The third act kicks in with a small Lisa sub plot that only somewhat ties in with the main plot. Both the hotel and temple scenes had some funny moments, like Millhouse hearing from Homer that he is a good pick to be a reserve. Homer portraying himself as the Buddah has been done before, but it was only a small gag. The ending tried to mix both plots together, but it felt somewhat flat in that regard. I didn't like how the other kids seemingly blamed Bart, while Homer gets off free... unless you count his dream sequence of getting kicked out of the sport dads club.

    Its an enjoyable episode for most part, with a premise that is more fresh and interesting. They showed a lot of the family and returned some of the kids that we rarely see (I would've liked to see more of Martin at least). Maybe it would've been interesting if the dads from the other kids also became sport dads like Homer. It could've added some extra chemistry with characters like Kirk and Krusty. I liked most of the gags where they did a pretty good job making fun of the e-sport scene. I think that the Lisa plot might've been to distracting for this episode, and the plot alone would rather fit as its own traveling episode where the family visit South Korea. The plot was solely to give Homer the urge to ruin the competition at the end, which could've been ruined in all sort of ways. I like the idea of trying to portray Bart as slowingly becoming unhappy as a big league e-sporter, and Lisa somewhat saves him where her plot ties in with the ending of the main plot. With the ending we got now there's no indication that the kids wouldn't try to continue playing competitive matches to try to win money. If they did the last act a bit better it might've scored a solid 5/5, but as of now I'll give it a:

    4/5
    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


  21. #18
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    @Brad Lascelle, I just wanted to add that I was looking at that reddit review thread (and wow, a lot of ire towards Lisa in that one, though I'm not surprised since a big part of the internet, ranging from Reddit to Youtube to 4chan is really hating Lisa with a lot of folks are saying she was always a bad character and her episodes were never good) and this quote caught my attention:

    For once, I can't blame Lisa for this one. I mean, I CAN and it would be very easy to do so. But I won't. She had no idea any of this would happen, and this is nothing compared to the tiger bite episode. Though it's a little suspect how it's a Bart story, but she gets everything she wanted and Bart loses everything.
    That last part is the most interesting (although I would'n't say he lost everything); it's like the writers really have it in for Bart and like @Venomrabbit is saying he does sorta come off as the show's version of Meg from Family Guy, but he's not nearly on that level yet.

    Though that tiger bite episode ('Jazzy And The Pussycats', I presume), wasn't that unintentional as well? I've seen it brought up a lot as a reason why Lisa sucks.

  22. #19
    Have Brain, Will Travel Wile E. the Brain's Avatar
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    I'm agree with those who think this episode was pretty good until the last part, not to the point of ruining the entire episode, but it makes it a little disappointing. I liked seeing Homer and Bart having a thing together, at first it almost looked like an apology towards those who thinked Bart was left behind while Lisa gets the parents attention in episodes like Daddicus Finch recently. And I'm a sucker for episodes that reunites Homer and Bart, except when it comes to one of them being a spiteful jerk towards the other, wanting nothing but his suffering. Here, they have a good bonding. I'm not an expert in E-sports but that isn't necessary to appreciate the first acts, with some funny jokes (overall I had a number of laughs like Krusty saying the kids could go to the Krusty Burger without thinking of a discount, the player that can't make conversation that isn't about gaming, the canadians "out" - that was easy but I laughed out loud at this one -, the meta joke with the Simpsons Korean animation studio and Maggie too old to become a good beach voleyball player) and a good pacing.

    But then again, the last part mess up a bit. I get the idea of Lisa wanting to take the opportunity of Bart going to South Korea to do something she dreamed about for probably a while (though I had the feel that makes Lisa a depressed girl who can't be happy until she get whatever she wants, with the joke of her happy diary in the basement), but that doesn't get well with the main plot and somehow, that makes Lisa a little despicable when she gets what she wanted but because of that, Bart's situation is completely crushed (I know it was unintentional but at least she could be a little remorseful towards Bart but she doesn't care in the slightest apparently). By the way, yes, Bart taking the bullet for something that his dad does is pretty cruel, and Homer also doesn't seems to care a lot about him and that's a shame after an episode that was until that good to depict Homer and Bart's bonding. I'm not always against mean-spirited things in the Simpsons, but that was cruel just to be cruel, and that almost looks like the writers doesn't want Bart to be happy for an entire episode and letting him being the target at the end. Maybe that was made for a good reason if Homer was too much behind Bart and his exploits at E-sport but I didn't felt the episode shows that in a good way and that just makes the end depressing.

    Besides that, I had some other problems with the second half of the episode, with a more approximate pacing, another song (season 30 vibes I guess, I almost feel like Bender when there's another song in this season : "Oh crap, singing") not really useful, and an ending that felt a little rushed besides its mean-spirited aspect. And the fact Milhouse was replaced by another player, I'm not sure it was very useful except for adding some additional jokes (that were good, though; I liked Milhouse not wanting the pity job he asked). A solid episode for the most part but that could have been even better with a more proper ending, and that's a shame since there was a number of possibilities to make the ending more tolerable.

    3/5


  23. #20
    Actually an Esquilax Venomrabbit's Avatar
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    Oh yeah, it's not quite on the OG Meg's level (... yet) but he still fits the requirements; someone who nobody on the show likes, gets mistreated or even beaten without consequence, everyone blames them for everything even when it's not remotely their fault and that they're probably the most deserving of sympathy but rarely if ever get it, or even not specifically get scorn for it.

    Think the tiger bite one isn't quite a thing that makes Lisa suck. At least not as much as it could have, Granted outside of a single line she doesn't exactly dwell on her brother's nerve damage. There's been quite a few instances where she's caused misery or even deaths (in THOH's and out) where it's often unintentional but then she stills ends up showing little to no remorse about any of it or even making it about herself on some occasions.

    It's kinda like if someone was walking down an aisle, brushed up against something, knocked it off and broke it. Sure it wasn't intentional but if they don't even say sorry or even act like they're the real victim, they're still in the wrong.

  24. #21
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CousinMerl View Post
    @Brad Lascelle, I just wanted to add that I was looking at that reddit review thread (and wow, a lot of ire towards Lisa in that one, though I'm not surprised since a big part of the internet, ranging from Reddit to Youtube to 4chan is really hating Lisa with a lot of folks are saying she was always a bad character and her episodes were never good) and this quote caught my attention:

    For once, I can't blame Lisa for this one. I mean, I CAN and it would be very easy to do so. But I won't. She had no idea any of this would happen, and this is nothing compared to the tiger bite episode. Though it's a little suspect how it's a Bart story, but she gets everything she wanted and Bart loses everything.
    That last part is the most interesting (although I would'n't say he lost everything); it's like the writers really have it in for Bart and like @Venomrabbit is saying he does sorta come off as the show's version of Meg from Family Guy, but he's not nearly on that level yet.

    Though that tiger bite episode ('Jazzy And The Pussycats', I presume), wasn't that unintentional as well? I've seen it brought up a lot as a reason why Lisa sucks.
    To be fair, a good portion of the Internet has always raged against Lisa in much the same way as they rage against Captain Marvel or AOC or #MeToo victims or what have you... because white men are largely repugnant and chauvinistic and the Internet affords them the opportunity to spit venom against women, victims and "the libs" without incurring any reprisal. Lisa this week ticks all of those boxes and that vehemence has always been present even before the alt-right powder keg became more emboldened in the wake of Trump's electoral victory in 2016.

    That said, criticism of Lisa being given special treatment and never held to account for the mistakes she does make by the writer's room is a legitimate grievance. As is them seldom ever giving Bart a victory of any kind. Lisa should have arguably faced some sort of negative consequence for her trail of lies in The Girl on the Bus... and she didn't. Nobody cared about that, though... because it didn't come at Bart's expense.

    You'll note very few of the folks on Reddit or YouTube are placing any of that blame on Homer this week. And they should because he's who should ultimately take the blame for sabotaging his son's chances at success via some deluded self-interest in living through his son's success (as Earl Woods and those other celebrity fathers in his imagined musical montage did) and then deciding said success was ultimately meaningless.

    As for Jazzy and the Pussycats, nobody forced Bart to go hang out in the attic with a bunch of dangerous wild animals so he could "not smoke reefer" with his jazz mentors. Lisa certainly didn't force him up there. That was on him.


  25. #22
    Have Brain, Will Travel Wile E. the Brain's Avatar
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    The tiger part in Jazzy and the Pussycats is interesting in some way. Because Lisa had the pretty stupid idea of keeping an animal as dangerous as a tiger in her house's attic (I guess this is why a lot of people take that as a reason of why Lisa sucks for them), but yeah that was Bart who goes to the attic on his own and in my opinion, he stayed long enough to normally notice that there were some dangerous animals with him in the attic.

    Lisa had indeed a part of responsability in Bart's failure here, but yes that's a little hypocrite to not notice that Homer also had a part, obviously bigger than Lisa (he didn't had to ruin Bart's success to resolve his own problem of self-interest in living through Bart's achievement).

  26. #23
    Stonecutter angeldeb82's Avatar
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    Well, at least The A.V. Club gave it a B-.

    https://tv.avclub.com/barts-esports-...ima-1833362964

  27. #24
    Actually an Esquilax Venomrabbit's Avatar
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    A lot of folks probably had more of an issue with stuff like the vegetarianism more than "grr womens!" (not that nobody does, mind... and that kind of attitude is most definitely not exclusive to men.). One of the stock phrases being that Lisa the vegetarian ruined her character. Though looking at how she was before that episode, it's more odd that she wasn't one from the beginning to be honest.

    Back to Jazzy, that is one of the reasons I say it's not as bad as it could have been. I think a lot of people take issue with the part about Bart dedicating the goodwill money to her but it ain't like that was her idea. Though at the same time, it was still a crap moment, having Marge preach to Bart about empathy when nobody in the family was showing any for him... but that specific bit wasn't Lisa's doing.

    And yeah, Homer definitely deserved at least the brunt of the other players' anger for this ep. Again, it really feels like they were just going out of their way to give Bart shit regardless of whether it made sense or not.


  28. #25
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    It's been a long time since I last saw 'Jazzy And The Pussycats' but it's an fairly memorable episode, though I had at least partially forgotten about Marge essentially pressuring and guilt tripping Bart into donating the money he earned while talking about empathy towards Lisa while he got none and it does feel like the true issue of the episode. Lisa inadvertedly causing Bart's injury because of her goodwill towards animals (which as said also was due to him being careless around dangerous animals) was nothing, just hyperbole by the anti-Lisa folks.

    And those saying that 'Lisa The Vegetarian' ruined her cannot be more wrong. It's a great episode and an understandable characterization of Lisa herself (she's a kid after all so her going too far feels rather true to her personality, plus she learned a lesson in the end).

  29. #26
    Junior Camper Mikesuper26's Avatar
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    I thought this was a decent episode that was brought down considerably by its ending. The opening scene in which everyone is getting along without Bart being present is kind of depressing for me and is reminiscent of cruel scenes in episodes such as "On a Clear Day I Can't See My Sister," where everyone is pleased that Bart isn't among them. The Simpsons are certainly not a "perfect" family (if such thing even exists) but to be happy for the absence of a family member is a bit dysfunctional and cruel towards Bart. I did like the episode's premise of Bart becoming extremely talented with E Sports, and I always enjoy watching Homer support his son and bond with him. This type of plot is far better then the all too common Bart is a stupid, talent-less loser who can't do anything right. Homer being dumbfounded when told that Bart can actually win money from the E Sports tournaments was funny, as was Skinner's self stated confusion and reluctance to hand over the tournament winnings to Bart. Bart inadvertently hurting Homer's knee, Homer sweet talking Marge into allowing Bart to continue participating in E Sports, the E Sports trainer and some of Homer's coaching methods actually made me laugh and was entertaining. Like I said, I really enjoyed watching Homer coach the team and actually care about Bart's success, even if the whole idea was for him to live through Bart.

    Where it all fell apart for me was at the ending. I have been following the discussion on this thread regarding Lisa and her seemingly self centered attitude towards Bart and Homer going to South Korea. While I am generally not a huge Lisa fan, nor do I usually side with her views in arguments I feel compelled to defend her in this situation, at least to some degree. First and foremost, Lisa is an eight year old girl. I cannot be angry at a character who is only eight for being upset and feeling left out when all the attention is being focused on her brother. Furthermore, Lisa's faith in Buddhism is very important to her and we have seen her family members disregard her faith in some episodes, which must be crushing for her. Finally, I do not believe the end results of this episode were her fault. It did not appear that she had any intentions of ruining her brothers bid at becoming a tournament champion. This episode portrayed Lisa as the young child she is, and she acted exactly how I would expect an eight year old to behave. I think that people sometimes forget the age of the characters, (which is mostly the fault of the show for putting the kids in situations that would be best suited for teenage characters) but in this situation Lisa's age is paramount to understanding the reasoning behind her actions. While I much prefer Bart over her (or pretty much any of the other characters) I do not believe that this episode's train wreck of an ending was her fault.

    While I mostly vindicate Lisa from fault, the ending of this episode essentially shits on Bart, but in a fair less direct manor then simply calling him a sociopath or portraying him as a loser. Some posters have mentioned that Bart is essentially the Meg Griffin of the Simpsons, and I emphatically agree with that contrast, except that I feel like Bart is even worse off then Meg at times. Bart is ten (a child) and Meg is now eighteen (an adult.) Abuse towards Meg by her family is far more obvious, but she has more of a defense against such abuse. Bart is physically abused (mostly by Homer), bullied in school, has deranged psychopaths out to kill him and his been emotionally abused and neglected from a very young age. As such, when he is given a chance at success such as the case here, I very much enjoy seeing him happy and successful in his endeavors. At the conclusion of this episode, Homer in his zen state shuts off the power for Bart's tournament, causing the team to hate him for some reason. This is also after Homer abandoned Bart and his team at the tournament, choosing instead to visit a Buddhist temple with Marge and Lisa. In the last scene of this episode, we see the team members throwing crap at Bart and hitting him, while he just sits there depressed and saddened. Nobody in his family cares about he feels, nobody takes into account that the reason for the power shutting off was not his and to top it off, the man who caused the power outage proceeds to sit there and complain about his in flight experience while ignoring his son getting punched and abused for what he did. So much for the father son bonding - I could forgive Homer for ruining Bart's tournament if he had taken responsibility for his actions and tried to comfort his boy, but instead he ignores his son and any memories of him coaching Bart to live through him are forgotten. This lack of care for Bart is representative of why I feel his character has been shit on the most in recent years, and though the writers have backed off a bit with the sociopath and loser Bart jokes this season, it is clear they still would prefer to make a fool of him and have us watch him fail in a majority of the episodes.

    A good episode with a good plot that was marred by a terrible ending. 3/5


  30. #27
    Proud of Being Lame Nitsy's Avatar
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    I have to agree with the majority on this episode: it's decent but the ending wasn't great.

    Homer's flaw in this episode is that he wants to live vicariously through Bart in his potential success at gaming. Yet despite the emphasis on Homer's flawed plan to live through Bart's success, Homer does not actually behave that badly. He effectively trains Bart and his friends and gets them ready for the tournament (unlike, say, A Star is Torn, where Homer behaves like a horrible stage mother making Lisa uncomfortable with his behavior). Bart even admits that Homer's coaching worked, and other than Homer kicking Milhouse off the team and telling Nelson "Pringles are for champions!", Homer hasn't really gone too far here as a coach. It's mostly what we learn from his (too long) dream sequence/song that tells us this is leading somewhere bad, i.e. to Bart eventually resenting him and their relationship becoming strained. If we're supposed to think "this tournament is a bad thing and needs to be stopped" (per the ending), they didn't do the best job of communicating that throughout the episode. Maybe if we had seen Bart lose interest or resent Homer's coaching, but we don't see any of that. Everything is apparently going well, except for Lisa.

    Now, regarding Lisa. I don't agree that Lisa is to blame for what happened in the end. Lisa decides to take Homer to the temple right when she sees Homer going a bit too far (in asking Milhouse to leave the team). At this point she knows that Homer is viewing this tournament as the be-all end-all and might even be angry with Bart if his team doesn't win, so Lisa wants Homer to realize that material success is not the most important thing. She didn't know Homer was going to sabotage the tournament. Still, her breakdown in front of Marge was a bit much, as was her comment about "what this family does to her". The writers aren't great at making Lisa sympathetic. But all in all, I don't blame her for anything she did in this episode.

    The ending was just a way of returning to the status quo. Unfortunately it came with a scene of the rest of Bart's team hating him, thus ending on a negative tone, which I didn't like. I still think Homer could've had his "zen" moment and Bart could've still won the tournament. Maybe all Homer's realization would do would make him totally uninterested in coaching. It didn't have to end with the tournament ending without a winner and the team blaming Bart for it. Oh well.

    For the most part, I did enjoy this episode. It wasn't particularly funny, but I enjoyed seeing Bart be good at something, I liked Homer coaching Bart and his friends, and I liked that the trip to Korea was only incidental to the plot. 3.5/5
    Last edited by Nitsy; 03-19-2019 at 08:28 PM.
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  31. #28
    Chatting Simpsons Since '93 Brad Lascelle's Avatar
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    Here's Phil's review of this episode. Notice how he doesn't give any of the blame to Homer.

    Apparently, Homer, the middle-aged adult, is exonerated of any fault or agency in his actions and all the blame falls on the little girl who was simply trying to bond with her parents and share a memorable experience with them. Hmmm...

    The writers didn't do Lisa any favours with the way this episode was paced and storyboarded. And they certainly never do Bart any favours in terms of ever giving him a victory of any kind.

    But if ever there was an episode poised to bait a certain kind of response from a certain kind of individual, this is the one. Especially when you're flashing a bunch of arrows at it in the promotional hype beforehand saying "hey, gamers watch me" and following it up with an episode about Bart getting "woke" over a gender-swapped reboot of Itchy & Scratchy.

    Intentionally triggering negative Internet reactions to get casuals talking about the show isn't exactly what I'd like to see from the producers. But between this, the much-publicized Michael Jackson episode pull-down ("I think he used the show to lure boys") and the Apu controversy, I sort of think this is by design. And I'm not thrilled about that.
    Last edited by Brad Lascelle; 03-19-2019 at 06:23 PM.


  32. #29


    WORST. EPISODE. EVER. 0/10

  33. #30
    don't quite cover all CousinMerl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brad Lascelle View Post
    Here's Phil's review of this episode. Notice how he doesn't give any of the blame to Homer.

    Apparently, Homer, the middle-aged adult, is exonerated of any fault or agency in his actions and all the blame falls on the little girl who was simply trying to bond with her parents and share a memorable experience with them. Hmmm...

    The writers didn't do Lisa any favours with the way this episode was paced and storyboarded. And they certainly never do Bart any favours in terms of ever giving him a victory of any kind.
    Seems like too many are misinterpreting this episode and doesn't think about the fact that it was mainly Homer's fault and he should get the brunt of the blame. I think the writers should've been perfectly clear that Lisa wasn't really in the wrong here and really made her stand out as fully sympathetic to not sow any doubt, which they didn't and which resulted in the ire of the viewers being directed toward Lisa and her subplot.

    She meant well and tried to teach her parents, especially Homer, something but it backfired due to Homer's stupidity (and the not too great writing). I wish they had at least written the ending plane scene differently and emphasized Lisa's plight, had her shown empathy towards Bart and tried to make him feel better, maybe even calling out the rest of the team for hating him instead of Homer. It would've made for a nicely emotional scene (and the team turning to pelt Homer instead could've been a nice joke).
    Last edited by CousinMerl; 03-20-2019 at 02:00 PM.




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