Friday, July 13, 2007

DeadOn vs. Vanity Fair--Who is S-M-R-T-er? Pt 1

And so we begin taking a couple of well-meaning, separate Greatest Simpsons Episodes Countdowns, and turning them into one big bloodthirstily competitive duel. By making it a competition, we make into a sport, almost. As much as golf is, certainly. Shockingly, there are has been very little overlap between the two lists, which suggests that one of these combatants is going to get the snot kicked out of them. We John Ortved's top 10 in Vanity Fair, and we have the ongoing Top 20 from DeadOn. Let's get it on!

Vanity Fair's #10: The President Wore Pearls. I can't speak for the entire of IDYFT, but I was fucking stunned to these episode listed any where near the top 10. I'm pretty sure it wouldn't crack my top 50. Honestly, after an episode in which Lisa sings, does anyone sit around and say, "I wish I could have gotten more of that singin' Lisa!" If there are people out there like that, this episode is for them. A parody of "Evita" with Lisa rising and falling out of the School Presidency. Before this episode aired, I didn't think the world needed another musical parody. After it was done, I was convinced of it.

Yet Ortved says that "[t]he musical numbers are astoundingly good." Look, if you've got a weakness of for musical parodies, you probably shouldn't be in charge of a Top 10 Simpsons. This prediliction for musical routines will raise its head a few more times, but this is by far the most egregious example of letting music numbers obscure the fact that the episode is at best mildly humorous.

DeadOn's #10: Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk. Now, this is an episode that belongs in a Top 10 list. Burns sells the power plant to some Germans who in their attempt to make the thing work efficiently and well are put in the path of Homer. This episode has one of the strangest little musical moments in Simpsons history, in which Homer imagines The Land of Chocolate, where everything is made of chocolate, and Homer quickly eats infrastructure and pets alike. DeadOn calls it the "50 of the greatest seconds in television history." That hyperbole folks, and that's OK. That's was irrational irresponsible bloggers do. DeadOn also rightfully points out that Burns gets a ton of great work in this episode, and that Phil Hartman as the kindly German Horst has one of his finest one-shot characters.

Who wins: Not even close in my book. Score Round 1 to DeadOn. But go ahead and be heard--poll is on the left.


Jess said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jess said...

Whenever I see chocolate on sale, I can't help but say, "Wow, chocolate. Half price!"

Then I take a bite out of a chocolate schnauzer.

Andrew Wice said...

Vanity Fucking Fair? Wasn't that a novel by someone who isn't me?

The Simpsons tumbled in the late nineties by shoving musical numbers into every fucking episode. Once or twice was cute. But when every episode revolves around Lisa singing ... yeah, exactly.

"Mildly Amusing" the show may be, but compared to the vast armada of great Simpsons episodes, GHW Bush as a neighbor doesn't even register.