“Lisa in trouble – the ironing is delicious!” – Bart Simpson. You see, this particular charter school doesn’t do much book learning.
Airdate: December 19th, 1999
Written By: Tom Martin
Plot: Springfield Elementary School is coerced into a construction project to bring the school up to code with the Americans with Disabilities Act. However, the Mafia in charge construct an opulent system… that breaks with a single touch… all while taking the money and running. Out of cash, and with nobody willing or able to fund the school, Springfield Elementary is turned into a charter – brought out by Kid First Industries. However, the new operator is not only poor at their educational philosophy themselves, but are using the school to do market research into a hot new toy.
Well, it’s the holiday season! Here’s hoping you’re all enjoying nice cocoa, hoping for a white Christmas, not getting tired of the 24/7 Christmas Music on the radio quite yet, and…
…wait, what the hell? It’s July? Everybody’s having burgers, celebrating the World Cup, and going to baseball games? They’re hanging out at the beach, eating ice cream, and going across their nation or down to Spain?
OK, did my fellow Americans at least have the common knowledge to learn from the defensive end from the greatest sports team to ever walk the Earth, and make sure the fireworks they set off on the fourth didn’t blow up in their hand?
Ah, what the hell, let’s watch some more Simpsons – “Grift of the Magi”.
“Grift of the Magi” is the fourth Simpsons Christmas special ever. The first, “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire”, was the show’s opening salvo, demonstrating the working class dysfunction with a heart of gold that powered the show in its glory years. The second, “Marge Be Not Proud”, has been generally well-received, but a small contingent of fans led by one Dead Homer Society considers the episode the worst episode of the first seven years of The Simpsons, as well as the opening salvo of the show’s decline into more traditional sitcom-ish plots and cloying emotion. The third, “Miracle on Evergreen Terrace”, is more divisive – and I personally dislike it for a failure to achieve a decent tonal balance.
So here we are. Season 11. The Scully Era is in its third year, and the critical reception towards the show has soured, at least from the more devoted fans. How would they pull off this Christmas episode? Would it have been an improvement, proving they learned their lesson? Or would it have been disastrous as the writing crew stops giving a damn? Let’s take a look. Continue reading