Well folks, we’ve made it through another week of Lifetime of Simpsons. It’s been kind of a buck-wild week, which has certainly made things interesting. We’ve seen robot, Inceptions, boobs, and the breakdown of civilization, so how could we possibly cap this week off? With James Bond! Aw man, this came a week too late.
The episode begins with a helicopter flying toward a massive castle sitting atop a mountain. We see the helicopter land in a courtyard, and several ominous supervillains get off and head into the castle for some sort of meeting. However, they don’t notice the fact that a man in a tuxedo was stowing away on the helicopter, and is following them into the castle. He’s able to stealthily infiltrate the castle, only to get Homer loudly interrupting his zinger.
Yeah, Homer and Marge are at a movie theater, having some date night and checking out the latest movie in the Stradivarius Cain franchise. And Homer has decided that he needs to heckle the movie, and pitch his own jokes, much to the annoyance of Marge. But she tries to ignore it, and watches as Cain breaks into the villain’s meeting and kills them all. And yet, Homer just keeps loudly making comments, embarrassing Marge to no end.
After the movie the two head home, and they have a rather tense car-ride. Marge is super irritated that Homer is so rude and annoying, and the two end up getting into a huge fight, where Marge ends up not talking to Homer since he ruined their date. And that fight doesn’t let up, because the next day when Homer goes to work he’s still worried about it, and ends up trying to call Marge to talk about it, only to have it go straight to voicemail. However, disaster strikes when Homer’s on the phone, because as he’s walking around the Plant trying to get a hold of Marge he’s suddenly hit by Mr. Burns driving some little golf-cart, smashing Homer’s head.
But before we get into the ramifications of that head injury, we need to set up the B-Plot. It all begins at the Elementary School, where Bart arrives to find that new security measures have been instilled. Apparently the school is sick of embarrassing videos of teachers being filmed, so they’re outlawed cell phones, and make the kids go through a metal detector. And while the kids pass through the detector Nelson just steals all of their stuff, pissing Bart off like crazy.
It’s going to be a little bit before we see how Bart’s irritation flourishes though, so let’s check back in on Homer’s head! It’s not great! Homer’s been brought to an infirmary, and they show that he got a pretty serious concussion. But Burns doesn’t want Homer to sue him or anything, so he decides to give Homer eight weeks of paid vacation to pay him off. And because Homer’s simple, and just got a concussion, he agrees to this, and races off to tell his family the good news.
However, when Homer gets home he finds he can’t get a word in edge-wise. Marge is still pissed about their huge movie argument, Bart is sulking about Nelson, and Lisa is talking about something he doesn’t care about. And Homer suddenly realizes something interesting. He doesn’t need to tell them anything. He decides that he should just keep this leave to himself, and have eight weeks where he doesn’t need to go to work, or be with his family.
So Homer begins his weird little vacation, telling Marge and the kids that he’s off to work and then hitting the town. He wanders around Springfield, seeing what the town is like on a workday, which is strange. But, since it’s Homer, he of course ends up going to Moe’s at one point. But when he gets there he finds that Moe is busy killing racoons, so he just settles in and watches some TV. And it just so happens that a Stradivarius Cain movie is on. Homer gets really into it, and suddenly he notices something odd. Stradivarius Cain is sitting in the bar with him. And no, not the actor, the character. Because Homer’s un-treated concussion is no causing illusions. But Cain wants to help Homer become a person Marge can’t resist, so he goes with it.
While Homer is dealing with the side effects of brain trauma, Bart is still fuming about Nelson, desperate to find some way to get revenge. Which is when the answer falls into his lap. Because that day at school they’re watching a new documentary from Decland Desmond that’s just a parody of Super Size Me, but with Krusty Burger. Bart watches as Decland becomes hugely obese over the course of a month of eating nothing but Krusty Burger.
So, Bart decides that he can weaponize this information. He goes out and buys a coupon book full of free meals at Krusty Burger, and gives them to Nelson as if he was doing some sort of peace offering. Nelson doesn’t think twice about it, and quickly starts eating nothing but Krusty Burger. And, before he knows it, Nelson is suddenly massively obese, to the point that he gets featured in a news story. Which makes Bart realize he went too far.
And while all of this is going on Homer is continuing to spend time with “Stradivarius Cain,” as the two get to know each other. Cain insists that he can help Homer, even though he’s a tad judgy, and they come up with a plan to give Homer confidence. And it all revolves around the two of them going to a fancy bar and having Homer hit on random women. Maybe not the best plan, but whatever, they get to the bar and after striking out several times Homer is able to woo a woman. Which really pisses off her husband, who tries to attack Homer. Luckily Cain is able to give fighting advice too, and the two are able to escape the situation.
But before we see Homer’s whole plan fall out from under him, let’s finish off that B-Plot. Because now that Nelson is super fat, Bart feels responsible, and wants to help out. So Bart and Lisa bring Nelson to Krusty’s mansion, and insist that he do something since it’s his company. This is pretty spurious logic, but Krusty rolls with it, and lets Nelson use his personal trainer. Which ends up working too well, because by the end of the regiment Nelson becomes super buff, and a much more effective bully. Whoops.
Anyway, things are about to go really bad with Homer’s plot. Because some time into his eight weeks off Marge finally forgives Homer, and heads to the Plant to surprise him with some baked goods. And when she gets there she’s pretty pissed off to find that Homer isn’t there, and has been off for quite some time. She heads home, and catches Homer, ready to yell at him. But, as another fight is about to break out Cain recommends just telling Marge the truth. Homer does, and she instantly forgives him, kind of terrified that her husband has had a brain injury this whole time, and didn’t tell her.
Homer and Marge decide to go enjoy their new found happiness by having a date night, at that same fancy bar from earlier. Which is a bad call, because that angry husband finds Homer again, and tries to attack him once more. However, Homer is in a bit of a problem, because Cain isn’t around anymore. So he has to run outside of the bar, and start pummeling himself in the head until a new concussion brings Cain back. It works, and Cain gives Homer the advice to use the flirting technique on the jealous husband Which, surprisingly, works. The situation is avoided, Homer and Marge are happy again, and Stradivarius Cain will return.
I had a lot of fun with this episode. It has some hallmarks of episodes that drive me crazy, such as Homer and Marge having an absurd fight that instantly throws their marriage into disarray, but the weird Stradivarius Cain aspect is enough to win be back over. Cain is a very goofy character, and I like the idea of Homer hanging out with a suave secret agent in order to become a better husband, even if the agent is just a figment of his concussed mind. The whole B Plot is pretty weak, and was kind of a distraction whenever it popped up, but overall it was a fun little episode.
Take Away: Concussions fix all of your marital woes.
“The Spy Who Learned Me” was written by Marc Wilmore and directed by Bob Anderson, 2012.
Categories: Lifetime of Simpsons