Hey there everyone, and welcome back to another week of Lifetime of Simpsons. We’re closing out Season 22 this week, which has been a pleasantly solid season. So of course it’s time to come across a real clunker. Because why wouldn’t it be fun to check out an episode that’s essentially just “women be talkin’”?
The episode starts off with Lisa painting a baroque portrait of Patty and Selma in the Simpson’s back yard, which is full of embellishment. I’m not sure whose idea this whole thing is, because Patty and Selma seem super bored by the whole process, and just end up falling asleep while Lisa completes the painting. Which was a poor decision, because apparently they’re both incredibly deep sleepers, and don’t notice the chaos that’s about to befall them.
Because Bart has arrived, and of course needs to screw up his sister’s project. He begins hassling Lisa, until she gets so irritated with him that she chucks her palette at Bart. Unfortunately she has poor aim, and the palette, loaded up with paint, lands right into Patty’s hair. Bart and Lisa panic a bit, and decide to use some paint thinner to get rid of the globs of paint in Patty’s hair. This results in a giant hole being burnt right through her hair.
So things have escalated to a bad place, resulting in Bart and Lisa deciding they need parental assistance. And since Homer is the only parent in the house, it’s up to him to fix things. Which he is woefully unprepared for. But, he has an idea. He’ll just cut away the ruined hair, and shape Patty a new hairdo. And, shockingly, Homer does a great job. Patty ends up waking up at the end, and after the initial horror of Homer messing with her hair, she’s shocked at how good she looks. Hell, it’s so good that Selma even requests a haircut from the baffled Homer.
But before we see how that pays off it’s time to go check out today’s B-Plot. Which begins at Springfield Elementary when Bart is asking Milhouse why he’s acting so weird. Turns out Milhouse has never seen the beginning of Finding Nemo, his parents always skipping the brutal death that starts the movie off, until last night. He saw Nemo’s mom die, and has suddenly gained an understanding of death, which has caused him to decide he needs to live every day like it could be his last. Which means it’s time to tell Lisa how much he loves her.
Meanwhile, Homer has intended to just move on with his life, ignoring the fact that he seems to be a natural hairdresser, until destiny is thrust upon him. Lindsay Naegle shows up at the Simpson’s house, after hearing about Homer’s magic abilities, and insists on getting a haircut from him. Homer relents, and ends up giving Lindsay an amazing haircut, which she’s thrilled about. So thrilled that she says Homer should open up a salon and begin charging money for it. And because Homer’s always up for a new job, he decides that this is a solid idea.
However, we’re going to be jumping around a lot today, so let’s head back to the school! Because Milhouse has come up with a terrible way to profess his love to his best friend’s little sister. He’s going to loudly and proudly serenade Lisa with a love song in the lunchroom, with a Theremin accompaniment. Solid choice, Milhouse. Unfortunately, Lisa does not agree, she is utterly ashamed, and has to break Milhouse’s heart in front of the whole damn school.
So, not the best outcome Milhouse could have hoped for. Until he starts sadly leaving the lunchroom, when something shocking happens. A fifth-grader named Taffy walks up to Milhouse, and says how much she enjoyed the song. Milhouse and Taffy flirt a bit, and they end up agreeing to start dating. Way to go Milhouse! There’s just one problem though. This development baffles Lisa. She can’t understand why a popular older girl would be at all interested in Milhouse, and becomes fixated on solving this riddle, under the assumption that Milhouse is about to be pranked or something.
While all of this is going on Homer has bought a salon in a rough part of town, and has opened it up to much acclaim. Apparently Homer is so good with hair because he misses his own, and wants to treat hair right, so he’s an almost instant success. All of the women of Springfield start frequenting Homer’s new salon, working him like crazy. Oh, and you know what else is going crazy? Homer. Because it turns out he was not anticipating the amount of gossip and chitchat he was going to have to field while being a hairdresser.
Homer quickly loses interest in cutting hair, and starts to wear down immediately. He just can’t take all of the talking and gossip, and ends up having a bit of a freakout, yelling at all the women and fleeing from his salon. He flees to Moe’s, hoping to hide out there, when he realizes something horrible. He’s absorbed all of the women’s complaints about their men, and now all he can see when he sees them is their foibles, making it so he can barely be around anyone.
So, Homer has no choice but to retire. He heads back to his salon and starts the process of shutting it down when Chief Wiggum and Sarah show up, eager to get Sarah a fancy hairdo for the upcoming policeman’s ball. Wiggum threatens Homer into continuing his work, and he slowly starts being driven mad. Lenny tries to convince Homer to just do a bad job until everyone leaves, but he just isn’t able to do poorly. Homer’s trapped.
But hey, let’s see how Lisa’s investigation is going. Not well! Lisa has become utterly obsessed with stalking Taffy to figure out her dark secret, and has decided that she needs to move from cyber-stalking to real-life stalking. So Lisa heads out into the night and begins following Milhouse and Taffy as they hike in the woods, heading to a make-out spot. Unfortunately Lisa is not great at cover operations, and she’s quickly spotted by Milhouse and Taffy.
And they’re not pleased. They’re both really confused about why Lisa has followed them up to some overlook in the woods, and Taffy ends up getting really mad. She’s pissed that Milhouse still isn’t over Lisa, and ends up breaking up with him. Which is obviously devastating to Milhouse, who can’t figure out what Lisa’s goal was. She doesn’t want to be with him, but she won’t let anyone else be with him? And this confusing question gets Lisa so flustered that she ends up kissing Milhouse, admitting that she’s utterly baffled about her reaction, and has no idea if this means she likes him or not, but they agree to just go with it and figure out what’s going on later.
Now that that’s taken care of, it’s time to go to the policeman’s ball! Because apparently everyone is invited, and it’s a huge social occasion. So of course everyone is eagerly awaiting to see what Homer has done for Marge’s hair. And it’s stunning. Everyone begins complimenting Homer about his magnus opus, when he drops the bomb. He didn’t do it, Julio did. This causes every woman in the room to flock to Julio, desperate to have him be their hairdresser while freeing Homer from this weird witches curse he’s apparently obtained. He then gets to go back to his normal life, only using his powers on Marge.
Yeah, this episode isn’t for me. Really, neither plot work for me, and just kind of create an utterly forgettable and lukewarm episode to me. The whole Lisa plot is really weird, and I feel like if it had been an A-plot and really examined the weird conflict that people Lisa and Milhouse’s age get put into when they can’t figure out what’s going with their emotions. But as it stands it was just Lisa being insane and then messing with Milhouse’s heart, because I can tell you we don’t examine this issue in the next couple episodes, and I doubt it ever comes back up again. But the real issue I have with the episode is the main Homer plot. Because it’s so incredibly strange. Homer finds out that he has a gift, but can’t stand the idea of talking to women and hearing their issues? Yeah, they kind of make it seem like the women of Springfield are insane, and harassing Homer into being their hairdresser against his will, but that’s insane. I don’t know, the whole central conflict of this episode rubbed me the wrong way, and really kept this episode from working on any level.
Take Away: Apparently there’s no stopping a woman from gossiping?
“Homer Scissorhands” was written by Peter Gaffney and Steve Vikstein and directed by Mark Kirkland, 2017.
Categories: Lifetime of Simpsons