Reading Digest: Everyone Thinks the Same Thing Edition


Image (which I couldn’t embiggen) shamelessly yoinked from here.

“Oh please, Lisa, everyone’s already figured that out.” – Marge Simpson

The indisputably big news this week was the appearance of the fabulous Murdoch boys in front of the British Parliament.  With the elder Murdoch alternately nodding off and generally seeming disconnected (or doing a very good impression thereof) while the younger one frequently leapt to answer questions whether they were directed at him or not, the entire world started making jokes about Burns and Smithers.  Both became trending topics on Twitter, and the comparison was mentioned in everything from newspapers to Wednesday’s The Daily Show.  So there are a lot of links about that this week, some better than others.  There’s also a ton of other good stuff, far more than usual: fan made art, musical links, a recap of what the Springfield soccer riot would’ve really looked like to a soccer fan in 1997, the first reading of a play I very much want to see, and some fantastic network television history.


The Passion of Bart Simpson – Smooth Charlie’s Click of the Week is an update on that play I mentioned a couple of weeks ago.  It’s set in a post apocalyptic world where Simpsons stories are handed down as folklore, specifically “Cape Feare”.  Thanks Andreas!

Murdoch – I guess we should get started with the Murdoch links.  Here’s what Rupert looks like with horns added electronically by Channel 6, as well as both Murdochs with their Springfield doppelgangers superimposed over them.

Rupert Murdoch . . . In 10 Words – Heh.

Life imitates art… sound familiar? – A satirical letter pushing the bounds of the Murdoch/Burns Murdoch/Smithers thing.  You Brits and your dry humor.

Murdoch looks to ‘stronger’ future as web looks to Simpsons – The Australians can get in on the fun too:

Rupert Murdoch was compared to Mr Burns, the villain in The Simpsons, his son James was described as Mr Burns’s sidekick Smithers and Mrs Brooks as Sideshow Bob.

Both Burns and Smithers were among the top trending words on the social networking site.

"So we had Mr Burns and Smithers, then Krusty threw a pie and Now Sideshow Bob’s in the seat," wrote one user, while another added: "It is astonishing quite how much they look/sound like Mr Burns & Smithers. Is this some kind of spoof or satire".

With James Murdoch Indisposed, What Now for the Muppet Mansion? – James Murdoch (you know, Smithers) may have purchased Jim Henson’s old townhouse in Manhattan, which prompted this piece of excellent usage:

(We’re quickly reminded of News Corp. employee Homer Simpson’s description of what a Muppet is for son Bart: “Well, it’s not quite a mop, it’s not quite a puppet, but man… [brief laughter] … So to answer your question, I don’t know.”)

Homer was actually addressing Lisa, but the quote is spot on so that’s definitely excellent usage.

Celebrity reaction on Twitter to Rupert Murdoch and son James select committee evidence – More snarky Burns/Smithers commentary about Tuesday’s appearance of Murdochs pere et fils.

“The Simpsons” defense – It’s probably not a good sign when the only example of News Corp editorial non-interference a Wall Street Journal editor can come up with is the Simpsons.

New Sarah Palin documentary ‘The Undefeated’ bashed by critics – That’s it for the Murdochs, but there is another famous right winger who didn’t have the best week:

In the Simpsons’ episode “A Star is Burns,” famed billionaire Charles Montgomery Burns wanted to improve his personal image and wanted members of the general public to admire him. He decided to produce a film, directed by Senor Spielbergo, which put him in a positive light. The Springfield film festival crowd was not impressed and booed the picture.

This led to Burns asking Mr. Smithers, if they were booing him. Smither replied, “No, sir, they’re saying boo-urns, boo-urns.”

That’s not quite excellent usage, Smithers doesn’t have a “sir” in that sentence, but it’s damn close.

I Heard It Once… – Just on pure Season 8 love, someone took the time to transcribe all of Ned’s epic meltdown from “Hurricane Neddy”.

What Went Wrong? The Springfield Soccer Riots in Retrospect – The riot from “The Cartridge Family” as if it really happened as written by someone who actually knows about soccer.  This was a great little read.

popurrí VI – Among other random pictures, there is one of a Homer Simpson vagina.  If you are reading this somewhere you can get fired from, you might not want to click.

SDCC 2011 Exclusive #97: Hallmark Cards Comic Book Guy – The Simpsons Ornament – The Krusty Brand Seal of Approval appears to have broken the meta barrier for Comic-Con merchandise.  This is a little Comic Book Guy figurine that says “Worst. Con. Ever.” on the front, yet can only be bought there.  If I say something snarky and mean about this I’m only contributing, so let’s just move on.

D’oh! Songs To Listen To In A Power Plant – Links to a ton of songs that are from the Simpsons or at least in some way related.

How to Beat the Heat – I could definitely have used a Jacuzzi Suit this week.

Review: HORRIBLE BOSSES – Another Moderately Funny Studio Comedy – Excellent usage:

In a classic Halloween episode of The Simpsons, Homer Simpson’s boss, Mr Burns, is depicted as a vampire. Homer is encouraged by his family to drive a stake through his heart. “Kill my boss?” he cries.  “Do I dare live out the American dream?”

26. Homer vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment – Our friend Mike Amato is still going through Season 2, but he’s added a few audio commentaries with friends of his.  It’s illuminating to hear the crosstalk of Simpsons fans extemporaneously discussing things.

If Bart Simpson Was Tank – Fan made sketch of a hyper-muscled Bart.

The Simpsons and “The Raven” – A little literary fan appreciation for the first “Treehouse of Horror”.

Yeardley Smith, La La Anthony, Marylouise Burke and More on Tap For Love, Loss and What I Wore – Smith will be briefly taking on an Off-Broadway role from early August through early September.

Homer and Marge – At the home of the real Isotopes in Albuquerque there are life size statues of Homer and Marge.  It’s neat and all, but why doesn’t Marge have any hands?  (via)

Cairo Graffiti -For Whom Exactly? – Revolutionary graffiti in Cairo, including a rather bloody looking Homer.

Deere With Growth Traction – John Deere is apparently having a very good year:

“We see John Deere has come out with this year’s line of roto-tillers. Surprise, surprise, they’re green. I say it’s time to send John Deere a Dear John.”

(That’s one of my favorite lines from The Simpsons.)

While the farm equipment critic for The Springfield Shopper may be growing tired of Deere & Company‘s (DE – Analyst Report) famous green machines, the rest of the world can’t seem to get enough of them.

Excellent usage.

HANK AZARIA TALKS ‘THE SIMPSONS,’ GIVES HIS TAKE ON DUFFMAN AND BUMBLEEBEE MAN – A typically news-less interview with Azaria as he promotes the upcoming Smurfs catastrophe.  He does mention that doing Zombie Simpsons is “routine at this point”, which probably wasn’t intended as a dig at the show, but which I choose to interpret as a dig at the show.

Our Latest ‘Find Me Friday’ Photo Contest Winner – There’s a patriotic and pear shaped Bart Simpson outside a Jamaican grocery in Philadelphia.  Nice picture.

Voters to Congress: Can’t someone else do it? – This is pretty good usage:

What those numbers most remind us — pop-culture obsessives that we are — of is an episode of “The Simpsons” where Homer runs for sanitation commissioner on the slogan: “Can’t someone else do it?”

In essence, Homer promises he will solve everyone’s trash problems — up to and including shoving down garbage in peoples’ cans with his own two hands. (Wouldn’t that be great?)

Homer’s wild promises win him the job but he is unable to deliver on any of his major pledges and is summarily run out of office (and publicly flogged).

The quote is right, but Homer didn’t get flogged, just fired.

Fall TV Campaign’s Flashback – 1990 – Four YouTube videos of the fall promo spots for all four networks.  I’ve posted the FOX one before, but these are all nice time capsules of what network TV was like back at the dawn of The Simpsons.  In the FOX video you can see very young versions of Christina Applegate, Johnny Depp, and Jim Carrey; the ABC one has MacGyver, Neil Patrick Harris when he was still a doctor, and a baby Olsen twin.  I watched all four videos, and all I can say is that this is what the 80s thought the 90s were going to look like.  Fantastic post.

2 Responses to “Reading Digest: Everyone Thinks the Same Thing Edition”

  1. 1 L
    22 July 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I certainly don’t nuderstand why are you mentioning my blog in yours, but thanks anyway for the publicity ;)

  2. 26 July 2011 at 8:38 pm

    Fox News mantra: Murdoch is good, Murdoch is great, we surrender our will as of this date

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