Tuesday, March 31, 2015

What Were They Thinking?: "Supertrain"

In the late 1970's, NBC was flailing. It appeared that nothing it tried was catching on and its audience was shrinking each year. NBC was reinventing itself practically every year and wouldn't find anything that caught on until 1982. Until then, it tried just about everything, including copying what was successful on the other networks. One of the most successful shows at the time was ABC's Love Boat, where a cavalcade of hasbeens converged on the titular "Love Boat" to spend an hour engaging in hijinks that would be resolved by the end of the episode.

With cruise ships taken, NBC chose to "borrow" the formula and set it on a train. Excuse us- the Supertrain! While it was not unbelievable that these low wattage celebrities would be reduced to taking a train instead of an airplane, the idea that any company would, in 1979, build a gigantic, luxury cross-country train as a successful ongoing business is impossible to imagine. 

Looking at a picture of this "supertrain" with the super wide tracks and its boxy, Delorean style design is mind boggling. Isn't it too heavy to be practical? Are there really enough people willing to pay money for a slow moving cross country trip on a railroad?

And what about the on-train amenities? There was an entire pool in this amazing train! Where's the professional golf course and full size ballroom?

This Supertrain derailed quickly. Its high production costs doomed it to a quick death. The show was canceled after just nine episodes. If any lesson was learned from this, it was that merely copying another network's show would not lift NBC out of its doldrums. Also- that the viewing public wasn't completely gullible.

Monday, March 30, 2015

What Were They Thinking?: "You're in the Picture"

April Fools Week at TemporaryLayoffs.com will feature "What Were They Thinking?" a weeklong look at television's worst moments and dumbest television shows.

On January 20, 1961, Jackie Gleason premiered a new game show sponsored by Kellogg's called You're in the Picture which featured celebrities competing for charity by putting their faces through holes in a painting like they were taking photographs at a tourist trap. The celebrities were supposed to guess what the subject of the painting was by asking questions of the host- Mr. Gleason.

The show was an instant embarrassment. Some people claimed it to be the worst show ever aired up to that point. Jackie had hoped to show that he could do more than just a variety show or situation comedy, but this was not the project that would do so. CBS canceled the show after just one episode, but gave Mr. Gleason the chance to turn it into something else. In a legendary half hour of television, Jackie Gleason took his slot on January 27, 1961 to apologize for the show and admit that it was terrible-

"Last week we did a show that laid the biggest bomb—it would make the H-bomb look like a two-inch salute."

The show was renamed The Jackie Gleason Show and became a variety show. Mr. Gleason's career quickly recovered. His guest stars on that ill-fated show were just as lucky. Pat Harrington went on to play the character of Schneider on One Day at a Time. Pat Carroll has done many things, including providing the voice for the Disney villainess Ursula in the classic film The Little Mermaid.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Friday, March 27, 2015

Bizarre TV Tie-Ins: Archie Bunker's Grandson

When it comes to bizarre toys based on TV Shows, this one takes the cake. Introducing the craziest doll ever made- Archie Bunker's Grandson

Produced by Ideal Toys, which was a division of CBS at the time, this doll was controversial, but not for the reason you probably expect. People weren't upset that a doll based on an adult program featuring a racist old coot was being marketed to children; they were mad that this boy doll was anatomically correct. Ignoring that controversy for a minute, one wonders why anyone thought this toy would be a big seller. Imagine this box on a shelf at the local Woolco. What child would reach for the box featuring a leering old man on it? Based on the top picture on the side of the box, we can assume that this doll was indeed meant for children. Perhaps they figured lazy grandfathers, desperate to get something for the grandkids at the last minute, would pluck this doll off the shelf.

Whatever the thought process was, it was horribly wrong. This toy was not a huge success when originally released, but it is now highly sought after by toy collectors.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The DuMont Network

One of the earliest television broadcasters was the DuMont Network. Founded by DuMont Laboratories which manufactured televisions, the network was created as a ploy to sell televisions. Despite this, the company put a lot of effort into its programming, often besting its competitors by notching more firsts under its belt.

DuMont was the first network that broadcast a program halfway across the country, the first to have shows fronted by Asian and African Americans and the first to produce a made for TV Film. Before he moved his show to CBS, Jackie Gleason's show Cavalcade of Stars aired on DuMont. The television network created an advertising model that is still used by the other networks today, though it was only used by DuMont at the time.

Unfortunately, since DuMont didn't begin with a radio network like ABC, NBC or CBS, it was unable to weather the lean early years of television. The other three networks could take their radio profits and plow them into television. DuMont had no such luxuries and couldn't hang on. It folded in 1956, just ten years after its founding. To add insult to injury, the network's archived kinescopes of its early programs were mostly destroyed in the 1970's, thrown out like useless garbage. Few DuMont programs still exist, lost to the ages and shortsighted archivists.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Real-Real Ghost-Busters

Nine years before Dan Ackroyd and Harold Ramis would bring their ghost fighting team to the big screen, CBS aired a Saturday morning sitcom featuring two ghost hunting detectives and a gorilla in a slapstick live action comedy called The Ghost-Busters.

Starring Larry Storch and Forrest Tucker, the short lived show had the lead actors playing characters closely modeled after their more successful F-Troop roles, only this time they found themselves saddled with what was clearly a fake gorilla. The show was mercifully canceled after just 15 episodes.

Filmation, which had produced the show for CBS, had probably forgotten all about this dud until Columbia Pictures came calling. They had an unrelated project also called Ghostbusters and wanted to license the name from Filmation. Filmation agreed and history was made when Ghostbusters took the 1984 box office by storm.

Columbia Pictures, in a cost saving measure, had not locked up exclusive rights to the Ghostbusters name. Now that the film was a runaway hit, Filmation decided to capitalize on its success by bringing back its classic characters in a new Ghost-Busters animated series.

Amazingly, Columbia Pictures actually tried to stop Filmation from using its own trademarks by filing a lawsuit claiming that children would be confused by the "fake" Ghostbusters. The case was thrown out and Filmation's new cartoon was released into syndication.

Not willing to let Filmation go unchallenged, Columbia released its own cartoon, astonishingly called The Real Ghostbusters, which it technically wasn't. A more accurate title might have been The Popular, More Recent Ghostbusters.

Eventually, Columbia Pictures worked out its issues with Filmation. Undisclosed sums of money changed hands, sealed deals signed and the cartoon based on the original Ghost-Busters became Filmation's Ghostbusters and Columbia's cartoon became the unchallenged Ghostbusters.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

TV in the Lunchroom

The dream of any television producer is not just to make a successful show, but to make a successful show that will inspire the home audience to get themselves to the nearest Woolco or TG&Y in search of profitable tie-in merchandise. Since the primary goal of any television show is to attract a large enough audience to satisfy the advertisers, profits made from licensing merchandise is considered "found money" and is a highly lucrative side business. Since the beginning of the fall Season corresponds with "Back to School" time in the United States, lunch boxes featuring kids' favorite television characters have always been big sellers. Not every show lends itself to the lunchbox treatment, however; but that doesn't seem to stop Hollywood!

Take the groundbreaking sitcom Julia; while an integrated cast and a professional woman were great role models for kids, we have a sneaking suspicion that most of these lunch boxes were bought in a rush because school starts tomorrow, this was all that Zody's had left and 'the kids love watching that Julia show!'

The Brady Bunch was definitely a hit with kids, but this lunchbox looks like Thermos was purposely trying to make a kids product that no kids would actually want to buy.

Kids loved Emergency! because it showed fireman as the "real heroes" saving the world just in the nick of time. So why not scare the kids by reminding them of the terror that will ensue if they somehow climb ten stories at an unguarded construction site? Certainly looking at the terror-filled faces of the kids everyday will make for a cheerful lunch!

The flip side was even cheerier; a terrifying fire is depicted in the background while one hero readies a noose for some reason and a potentially dead victim lies in the street. Enjoy your lunch, kids!

The Waltons was a show about a family living through the depression that grandma made everyone watch when she visited the house. Chances are that these lunch boxes were mainly purchased as disappointing birthday gifts from grandma.

Young girls would become "empowered" by owning one of these Charlie's Angels lunch boxes. At least, that's what dad told mom when she found one of these hiding in the back of dad's closet.

Not every tie-in worked out, however. When the network licensed these Mr. Merlin lunch boxes, they were undoubtedly engaged in extreme wishful thinking. After all, what the hell is Mr. Merlin and why does it apparently star Stan Lee and Amanda Bearse?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Liar's Club

No, it's not a severely outdated Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor or a decrepit Shakeys- it's a game show set! Liar's Club was a unique game show in which its celebrity panel would try to trick the contestants into getting the answers wrong, a huge change from the usual game show formats in which the celebrity panel helped the contestants.

On Liar's Club, the host would introduce a bizarre looking item. One member of the panel would demonstrate the exact use of the item while the others simply made up a believable story about what the item was. It was up to the contestants to guess what the true story was and answer accordingly.

The bonus round featured a piece of art that two celebrities would interpret for the contestant. One interpretation was correct, the other was made up on the spot. Liar's Club ended in 1979, but a short lived revival appeared on cable in 1989.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Saturday, March 21, 2015

TV Quote Weekends

"No one told Pernell that Davey has the I.Q. of a box turtle."

Friday, March 20, 2015

Unbelievable TV: "Pink Lady & Jeff"

In the late 1970's through the early 1980's, NBC was hitting new lows when it came to viewership. The network's glory days seemed to be in the past; very little it put on the air actually caught on. Perhaps that explains why the network produced a bizarre show that was so unbelievably bad that it had to have been greenlit by someone who was higher than a kite. How else to explain why a major television network would air a variety show (long after variety shows were remotely relevant) with two foreign stars (who knew little English and were virtually unknown in the United States) paired with a comedian who was best known for occasionally starring as a distant relative of Boss Hogg on Dukes of Hazzard? As hard as it is to believe, NBC did just that, "proudly" producing the disastrous Pink Lady & Jeff.

Wait a minute.... Doesn't that title card just say Pink Lady without the Jeff? Well, when NBC signed the Japanese sensation Pink Lady to a contract, they agreed that the show would only feature the duo's name in the title. However, when NBC realized that it had agreed to produce a weekly show with two young ladies who knew little English, they realized the girls needed a co-host. Relatively unknown comedian Jeff Altman was enlisted to try to make the best of the situation, but his name couldn't officially be in the title. So it wasn't included on the show itself, but as you can see in this vintage ad, they promoted it with the show's unofficial name:

Watching just a few minutes of this debacle will instantly make anyone question his or her sanity. That so many talented people wasted their time on this is even more baffling. Mr. Altman has zero chemistry with the ladies, who seem to despise him and the hackneyed jokes they can barely enunciate, much less probably understand. The bizarre guest stars included Florence Henderson, Teddy Pendergrass, Roy Orbison, Lorne Green and even Jerry Lewis himself. 

While six episodes were produced, only five actually aired. The "lost" episode made it onto the DVD release, proving once and for all that truly everything must be available on DVD. Luckily for all involved, the show eventually became forgotten. Pink Lady returned to Japan while Jeff Altman has a lucrative voice-over career. One of the "featured" players who would become quite famous after this show was Jim Varney. NBC would eventually put the bad times behind it, becoming the home of mega hits like Family Ties, Cheers, Night Court and The Cosby Show.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Who's The Boss? The Upper Hand!

In the late 1980's, Columbia Pictures was in a free fall. While their television programming was doing well, the box office was not. Mega-bombs like Ishtar and Leonard, Part 6 littered the company's slate. The company decided to expand its reach by making its popular show formats available internationally. The first show it made available was Who's the Boss? which had been a huge hit in the United States and a top seller internationally. ITV in the U.K. eagerly snapped up format rights. Rather than merely copy the existing scripts, ITV chose to make changes while retaining the spirit of the original show. Therefore The Upper Hand was born.

In the U.K. version, ex-boxer Tony Micelli became ex-Soccer pro Charlie Burrows. He still took over the household duties from his wealthy lady employer. The show embraced the same "will they or won't they" storyline from the U.S. version but added its own spark, which appealed to the U.K. audience. The show was so successful it actually had an extended run, airing a season that showed what happened after the two leads got married.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Hooterville Holocaust

In the late 1960's, Americans had become splintered. Television used to unite young and old, but the networks were finding that their programming was only appealing to the older crowd. Advertisers were becoming less interested in television because of this demographic shift and the networks sought to change things up. The most desperate network was CBS, whose audience was the oldest of the big three. 

Thus began the "Hooterville Holocaust", or as it was more popularly known, the rural purge. Any shows with an older skewing audience (many of which were centered on farms or in the country) were marked for cancelation, including CBS' Hooterville Trilogy. The first to go was Petticoat Junction, which was already weakened by the death of its main star Bea Benaderet, but was still getting decent ratings.

Soon edgier shows like All in the Family and The Mary Tyler Moore Show made it onto CBS, tackling story lines that would have never been thought about in Hooterville, much less depicted on screen.

Emboldened by the ratings success, CBS went all in, canceling both Green Acres and Beverly Hillbillies, something that would have been unheard of just a few months prior. Despite handily winning their time slots, the Hooterville Holocaust would finally fell these colossal hits.

While the unprecedented cancellations were a shock to the shows' producers and fans, without them, the decks would not have been cleared for such classic shows as M*A*S*H and Good Times. While the rural themed shows were still quite popular, their heyday had come and gone. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

NBC & Universal's Wheel

With Hollywood's reluctance to partner with television networks long gone, the networks began making special deals for programming. One of the more ingenious deals was between NBC and its future parent company Universal Studios. Together, the companies would produce a revolving "wheel" of programming that NBC would air in the United States and Universal could distribute as theatrical films internationally. The first package was called Four in One and featured the debuts of McCloud, Rod Serling's Night Gallery and the ill fated San Francisco International and The Psychiatrist. This deal allowed NBC to create higher quality shows than it could otherwise afford.

After the first season, Rod Serling's Night Gallery became its own show, San Francisco International and The Psychiatrist were canceled and McCloud lived to establish an all new block of programming called The NBC Mystery Movie.

The mystery wheel would become an excellent incubator for NBC, launching classic 1970's shows like Columbo, MacMillan & Wife, Banacek and Quincy, ME. By the end of the 1970's, however, NBC's detective dramas fell out of favor with viewers. The strongest programs were either spunoff into stand alone hour-long programs or occasional movie specials. Everything else was canceled. 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Irwin Allen's Disaster

In the 1960's, Irwin Allen was the king of sci-fi television. His classic Lost in Space was hugely successful. In the 1970's he turned to films, creating the film genre that would take the decade by storm- the disaster film.

With 1972's Poseidon Adventure, Mr. Allen lucked into a genre that would serve him well for the next decade. Seen as a visionary, Mr. Allen was bombarded with requests from the networks, who begged him for huge event programming. Mr. Allen didn't disappoint, producing self-explanatory disaster films such as Flood!' Fire!, and Hanging By A String. These disaster films all used Mr. Allen's formula of casting has-beens, up and coming stars and character actors, putting them in harm's way, then producing a melodramatic film. One of his last disaster films was The Night the Bridge Fell Down.

In 1978, NBC commissioned Mr. Allen to go back to the well one more time and produce a two part disaster mini-series. Having exhausted most other disaster types, Irwin chose a falling bridge for this film. (Hard to miss that plot considering the title of the film.) The movie starred a Pre-Airplane! Leslie Nielsen, James MacArthur and a Post-Brady Bunch Eve Plumb.

Mr. Allen pulled out all the stops for this one; there's the bureaucrat who ignores all the warnings about the titular bridge, a sick baby, young love, nuns. After watching four hours of near misses and melodrama, even Mr. Rogers would be hoping the bridge collapses taking these people with it. By the time the film was completed, the bottom had fallen out of the disaster genre. Irwin Allen had milked it for all it was worth and audiences were tired of such films. NBC put the film on the shelf and it didn't actually air until February 28, 1983. If that date sounds familiar, it's because M*A*S*H ended its historic run the very same night. NBC had given this disaster film a suicide mission.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

TV Quote Weekends

"Oh, sounds like a certain loser could use some tanking up!"

Saturday, March 14, 2015

TV Quote Weekends

"I tried to enroll in school, but your Principal Skinner turned me away because of my shabby clothes."

Friday, March 13, 2015

The Best of The Simpsons: Bart the Lover

In this episode, we get a heartwarming and hilarious “A-Story”, a funny “B-Story” that could have stood on its own, and tons of quotable lines. Yes, it all came together in the Simpsons episode- Bart the Lover.

The episode begins with a “controversial” parody of those stupid educational films that everyone was forced to watch in school. In the movie, a dweeby kid from the fifties is forced to live in a world without zinc. When he discovers all of the everyday things that do not work without zinc, he decides to shoot himself in the head. Of course, he cannot do this because the firing pin uses zinc. After admitting his ignorance, he begs for the magic of zinc to return, which it does. Closely mirroring the real educational short, A Case of Spring Fever, this parody is classic Simpsons. They get the tone and look of these types of films down and play it all for laughs. (Unfortunately, some people found fault with the kid trying to commit suicide, but the circumstances are so ridiculous that any such quibbles are petty and unfounded.) At the end of the movie, the bell rings and we get a glimpse of Mrs. Krabappel’s lonely life. She sadly calls after her students to stay and learn more about zinc. She even offers to do their homework.

Sad and despondent, Mrs. Krabappel goes home. Everytime she finds herself outdoors, it is raining. As more bad luck befalls her, she happens upon a Personals column in the Springfield Shopper and decides to place an ad of her own.

The next day, Principal Skinner is trying to calm the kids down for an assembly. The assembly is another dead on parody of those quasi-educational assemblies that all of us attended in school. This time, the assembly appears to be sponsored by a Yo-Yo company that is trying to sell more Yo-Yos to kids. Miss Hoover and Mrs. Krabappel sit at the back of the auditorium and debate the educational value of the assembly with the following classic exchange:

MISS HOOVER: I question the educational value of this assembly.

MRS. KRABAPPEL: Ah, it’ll give the kids something to look back on when they’re pumping gas for a living.

Of course, this assembly leads to “Yo-Yo Fever” at the school, which slowly drives Mrs. Krabappel over the edge. Right after admonishing her class to stop submitting Yo-Yo related homework, Bart accidentally breaks the class aquarium with his Yo-Yo. Mrs. Krabappel confiscates the Yo-Yo and gives Bart after school detention.

While serving his detention, Bart recovers his Yo-Yo from Mrs. Krabappel’s desk and happens upon her personal ad. Armed with this information, Bart decides to write a letter to Mrs. Krabappel that purports to be from a mystery lover named “Woodrow”.

Meanwhile, Marge decides that Santa’s Little Helper could use a doghouse. As she prepares to head to the store to buy one, Homer stops her and decides that he wants to save money by building a doghouse himself. As he attempts to do so, he discovers that it isn’t as easy as he had first thought. His constant swearing is overheard by the Flanders boys next door. Todd begins to pick up the bad habit and Ned decides to figure out what could be causing it.

Bart receives a response to his first letter as Woodrow. Mrs. Krabappel has seen fit to include a picture of herself seductively posing on a bed in a negligee. Flanders begins his detective work and traces the bad language back to Homer. He confronts Homer and they agree that if Homer stops swearing in front of the Flanders boys, then Ned will shave off his mustache. When Homer brings this up to Marge, she agrees with Ned and suggests that Homer use a swear jar to help him stop his blue language. Homer grudgingly agrees. We then get treated to a hilarious montage of bad things happening to Homer that result in deposits to the swear jar, the most hilarious being one that takes place in church! (We also discover that Ned began getting offers to appear in television commercials after he shaved his mustache off and now receives hefty residual checks, to Homer’s obvious chagrin.)

In the world of Bart, Bart cruelly invites Mrs. Krabappel out on a date with “Woodrow” in order to laugh at her when she gets her hopes up. Sure enough, Mrs. Krabappel is devastated when Woodrow fails to show up. Homer, on the other hand, suffers injuries that would make the Pope curse like Ozzy Osbourne yet can only muster a “Fiddle-Dee-Dee”. Cured of his swearing, he decides to destroy the doghouse he’s been building. Marge takes the brimming Swear Jar to the store and buys a doghouse for Santa’s Little Helper and a six pack of Duff for Homer.

Bart decides to confess to his crime and asks his family for advice. They all agree that Bart has been cruel, but that he cannot confess for fear of making Mrs. Krabappel even more embarrassed. They decide to write a letter for the ages, one that will explain Woodrow’s absence, yet still make Mrs. Krabappel feel loved. (and doesn’t include the phrase ‘I Am Gay’) They accomplish this admirably and so ends the greatest 22 minutes of television.

What makes this episode so great? This episode gets everything right. The Simpsons is at its best when it is hilarious, sharply satirical and also heartwarming. When The Simpsons first came out, so many people focused solely on the hijinks of Bart and totally ignored the underlying love and respect woven into each story. Despite the fact that everything that can go wrong often does go wrong with Our Favorite Family, good always triumphs in the end and the love that the family feels for each other always wins out. Despite the fact that Bart acts cruelly in this instance, his humanity and conscience win out and he seeks to make things right regardless of the consequences.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Best of The Simpsons: Duffless

Homer gives up drinking booze for a month? Bart wins the science fair? Yes, both of those unbelievable things actually happened! (And all in the same episode to boot!) Surely an episode in which both Homer and Bart do things that are completely out of character, but totally believable, deserves to be on my list of the Top Five Simpsons episodes.

Duffless begins with a scene from the Springfield Science Fair. Bart has invented a “Go-Go Ray” that forces the school staff to spontaneously begin dancing against their will. (This scene features the classic Mrs. Krabappel line: ‘Can’t stop doing the Monkey!’) Principal Skinner decides that he’s seen enough and gives Bart the first prize. We soon discover, however, that Bart is asleep, the contest was a dream, and that Lisa has manipulated Bart’s dream by chanting the same line Principal Skinner used- “First Prize!” Meanwhile, Homer stupidly and accidentally reveals that he plans to skip work and spend the day at the Duff Brewery. Leaving the brewery, Homer is pulled over and arrested for being DOA- wait, I mean DWI. (Chief Wiggum always gets those two terms mixed up.) Lisa, on the other hand, entrusts Bart with the safety of her gigantic tomato which also happens to be her entry in the science fair. Bart destroys it by hurling it at Principal Skinner and Lisa vows revenge. Lisa then buys a hamster and pits him against her brother to see which of them is smarter. (Of course, the hamster wins hands down.) Homer promises Marge that he will not drink any alcoholic beverages for a month and is reduced to using Lisa’s old bicycle for transportation since his license was taken away. In the end, Homer follows through on his promise and finally puts Marge before Duff. Bart gets back at Lisa by winning the science fair with the exhibit “Can Hamsters Fly Planes?”, a project that Lisa proclaims has no scientific merit whatsoever. (Which gets her booed by the crowd.)

So what makes Duffless such a great episode? It is structured like all classic Simpsons episodes; two seemingly unrelated stories perfectly entertwined in just half an hour. It also features so many quotable lines:

“Uh, Mrs. Simpson, I have some bad news. Your husband was found DOA.” -Chief Wiggum, confusing DWI with DOA.
“This little guy writes mysteries under the name of J.D. McGregor.” -Raphael, AKA The Sarcastic Voiced Guy talking about a hamster.

“It’s funny ’cause I don’t know him.” -Homer, watching a Red Asphalt type movie.

“My name is Otto and I love to get blotto.” -Otto the bus driver (who else?)

I could go on and on; other classic bits involve Homer singing about the fake ID he used to buy beer when he was a teenager and a hilarious Duff Beer commercial in which feminists protest at an advertising agency, get sprayed with Duff Beer, then turn into bikini clad babes. For all of these reasons and more, Duffless deserves its place on this list.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Best of The Simpsons: Lisa vs. Malibu Stacey

Inspired by a talking Barbie doll who bravely told girls that “Math is Hard”, this Simpsons classic begins with Grampa Simpson deciding to give the family their inheritance before he dies. Lisa chooses to spend her money on a talking Malibu Stacy doll, then is aghast to discover the sexist things that it says, classic lines like-

“Don’t ask me- I’m just a girl”

“Let’s Bake cookies for the boys”

and even worse-

“My name is Stacy, but you can call me (wolf whistle).”

Lisa’s attempt to confront the management of the company that makes Malibu Stacy during a factory tour shows that the men in management are not very enlightened about women’s rights, as evidenced by the following exchange:

Lisa: Is the remarkably sexist drivel spouted by Malibu Stacy intentional or is just a horrible mistake?
Female Tour Guide: Believe me, we’re very mindful of such concerns.
Male Executive: Hey jiggles, grab a pad and back that gorgeous butt in here.
Female Tour Guide: Oh, get away, you!
Male Executive: Don’t act like you don’t like it.

Disturbed by what she sees, Lisa convinces the original creator of Malibu Stacy to come out of retirement and create a new doll named Lisa Lionheart. With its hilariously sexist dialogue, this episode is an excellent satire of society’s views on women and the way the toy industry passes these sexist viewpoints onto the next generation through harmless seeming toys.

And now, just because, another quote from Malibu Stacy herself-

“I wish they taught shopping in school”

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Best of The Simpsons: New Kids on the Blecch

New Kids on the Blecch- Who can forget the immortal tune Yvan Eht Nioj? As Lisa discovers, Bart’s band, The Party Posse is part of an elaborate scheme by the U.S. Navy to get new recruits. (Yvan Eht Nioj is revealed to be a subliminal message planted on one of Party Posse’s hit albums, letting kids know that they should Join The Navy.) Amusingly, the Navy’s boy band features Bart, Milhouse, Nelson and yes, even Ralph “I’m a pop sensation!” Wiggum. Before Lisa figures out what is going on, even Otto is roped into joining the navy, which gives us the following classic exchange:

Lisa: Otto! What are you doing?
Otto: I dunno! I just got an urge to join the Navy.
Lisa: You’re being brainwashed!
Otto: Yeah, probably. Yvan Eht Nioj!