Simply whenever you assume Homer’s worst troubles can be the trauma of dropping a John Travolta-shaped potato chip, an excessive twist within the plot turns the episode very darkish. The picture of Homer’s accident is sort of scary, and the road about how Ralph will at all times be seeing it in his goals can be extraordinarily unhappy, if it weren’t Ralph saying it. His character is a long-standing enigma, with mysteries buried deep inside his shallow understandings. The concept that he is aware of about Homer’s journey to Hell and again ties in with a few of his different visions from previous seasons. However Ralph, because the epitome of harmless childhood discovery, is equally helpful delivering a punchline nobody else may pull off.
Manufacturing-wise, the installment is worthy of a landmark episode. The animation to Lizzo’s track is an excessive departure from the usual, including whimsical circulate to the motion specifically. The paintings normally makes for some very elegant comedian cinematography, although I nonetheless want my Simpsons extra raggedly rendered. The sequence in Hell is a particularly detailed, gag-filled journey additional into Homer’s unconscious. It has all the same old suspects, plus Frank Grimes.
Homer skips the 5 phases of grief for the seven lethal sins, and takes the freeway to hell, solely slowing to attend in line for his eternal-burning-in-a-river-of-blood punishment. The gag about ready in line, together with having to stroll along with his father-in-law, as proof of being actually in hell matches completely with Homer’s character. Homer’s studying that “different folks have factors” is an previous adage, repurposed one too many instances. No less than his quantity on line is 666.
The change program between Heaven and Hell is a masterful morsel of cultural commentary: New sins for previous on an specific prepare with two stops. Shakespeare is newly charged with utilizing blackface in Othello, however his admission of by no means having written his personal works is the sort of confession which might have gotten him condemned with laughter all the way in which again to 1989. It’s a tried-and-true conventional recurring by line in The Simpsons’ model of Hell, like Richard Nixon having to be reminded of “all these issues he did” to be sentenced there.
Marge’s dad, Clancy Bouvier, turns into a villain, scapegoat, and a canon-killer, which is the main drawback for this reviewer. It’s good to get a fuller image of the Bouvier household matriarch, particularly as he chokes down a check-cashing rip-off appetizer in hell, nevertheless it throws a lot of the Simpson household’s previous into order when it’s at all times been about chaos. The one doable clue we might have gotten to this got here from the very first episode, “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Hearth.” In that Christmas extravaganza, we see that Marge does certainly conceal a jar of cash in her hair, however the household nonetheless has to depend on Santa’s Little Helper to lose his means into their hearts, as a result of they couldn’t afford anything.
The retroactive security web negates a lot in regards to the Simpsons background. From struggling within the bowling alley to underperforming on the nuclear plant, to no matter Homer is doing now, the nearness of economic collapse is a driving power for the present. Taking it away with a belief fund stipend spoils that. It does clarify so much, nevertheless it shouldn’t. I hope that is all in Homer’s unconscious and never new canon. That is two weeks in a row The Simpsons has erased household historical past. It’s disconcerting. Marge’s excuse for hiding the cash can also be a copout. Homer’s epiphany, figuring out by Lisa’s future loser boyfriend, is equally weak.