Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Simpsons: "The Haw-Hawed Couple" Review

As The Simpsons has gotten on in years, certain episodes have relied more and more on secondary characters outside of the family. Everyone from the Comic Book Guy to Moe have gotten their own episodes. Nelson Muntz, the school bully who has had his fair share of spotlight, is the focus of this week's episode.

As per the usual Nelson-centric plot, Nelson befriends a member of the Simpson clan. The first time this happened, it was Lisa. Then it was Bart. Then it was Marge. Now it is Bart again. Bart is the only person to show up to Nelson's birthday party, and Nelson immediately declares him his new best friend.

What is with the desperation of the friends of Bart and Lisa? Ralph has attached himself to both children and Milhouse is definitely Bart's lackey. It would seem that Bart and Lisa are the de facto "popular" kids at school, since all the children flock to them. Of course, this isn't always true, but seems to be conviently be true when the plot dictates it.

The secondary plot has Homer reading a Harry Potter parody to Lisa. He panics when the ending is a downer, so he makes up his own to keep Lisa happy. These sequences were pretty funny, with the pretty farfetched names and the nonsensical plot of the book within a show.

As far as nonsequitors go, the episode had its fair share. The beginning five minutes, which as usual was much ado about nothing, had Marge and Homer faking a fight so the kids would leave them alone to do some snuggling. They thanked god for their alone time and almost got away with it until their fight tape switched over to America's "Horse With No Name". Spider-Man and Doc Ock showed up to Nelson's party, with Spider-Man only having ten minutes of material. Also, Spider-Man looked a bit out of shape.

This episode could have been a disappointment, with it's recycled plot involving Nelson. But it was actually very strong in parts and had a good B-plot.

3 1/2 Vests Ripped By Wild Dogs out of 5.


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