[3F07] Marge Be Not Proud

Marge Be Not Proud                                       Written by Mike Scully
                                                  Directed by Steven Dean Moore
Production code: 3F07                       Original airdate in N.A.: 17-Dec-95
                                                  Capsule revision D, 22-Feb-97

Title sequence

Blackboard :- I will stop talking about the twelve inch pianist.
              I will stop talking about the twelve inch/ at cutoff.

Lisa's Solo:- None due to shortened intro.

Couch      :- Everyone sits down, but Homer notices a giant plug in the
              floor.  Curious, he lifts it up, and everything in the
              room gets sucked down the drain.

Did you notice...

Don Del Grande:
    ... Santa's Little Helper is there before Christmas Eve, unlike in
        the Christmas Special?
    ... in the Christmas Special, they don't have presents and the tree
        isn't white, two things that are true now?
    ... in "It's a Krusty Kinda Kristmas!", Krusty's "Merry Christmas"
        mat is _inside_ his "house"?
    ... the security guard has a USMC emblem tattoo?
    ... the doors to the Simpsonmobile have locks that can be opened and
        closed by one person?
    ... both Homer and Marge have their heads out of the car windows
        when driving home because they have to change Maggie?
    ... the security guard says Bart violated the 11th Commandment
        (which, technically, is "Do unto others as you would have them
        do unto you") - "Thou shalt not steal" is the 8th Commandment
        (as stated by Lisa in 7F13)?
    ... the surveillance tape with Bart on it is dated December 21?
    ... Bart and Lisa brush side-by-side?
    ... Milhouse's bedroom has Radioactive Man, Sideshow Mel, and Krusty
        posters, a Krusty garbage can, a Krusty walkie-talkie, and a
        lava lamp?
    ... the receipt on Bart's picture says "PAID IN FULL"?
    ... Lisa calls it "the worst Christmas ever"?
    ... the "Putting Challenge" cartridge allows the player to hit with
        something other than a putter?

Tony Hill:
    ... the wholesale cost of "Bonestorm" is $59.99?
    ... this is the first time Maggie's been changed in a long time?
        [since 8F14, by my count - ed]
    ... Bart calls Marge "my man"?
    ... the red and green lampshades?
    ... OFF has windows above the garage in this ep?
    ... Milhouse has a double bed?

Benjamin Robinson:
    ... when "Santa" bazookas the new videogame into the game player, it
        splits the cartridge that's already in there in half?
    ... Bart swears as he tells Ms.  Van Houten he didn't swear?
    ... "capisce" means "understand?"
    ... the squishy noises the bathroom rug makes when Bart steps on it?
    ... Bart wears shorts in the dead of winter, even though the rest of
        the family is bundled up in warm clothes?
    ... Marge sheds a few tears when Bart presents her with the photo?

Doug Yovanovich:
    ... Homer drinks a beer right before going to bed?
    ... Milhouse has a snorkel and fins on the floor at the foot of his

Dominik Halas:
    ... Kent Brockman outside Krusty's window?
    ... Gavin's hair is in a braided ponytail?
    ... Homer has forgotten Rev. Lovejoy's name?
    ... the Sideshow Mel poster in Milhouse's room?

Mark Richey:
    ... the Santa hats on top of the register numbers at Try-N-Save?
    ... Sonic says "Take it!" the exact same way "Sega!" is said in the
    ... Try-N-Save is pretty easy on shoplifters?
    ... Homer doesn't quite grasp the concept of answering machines?
    ... the numbers on the stockings at Juvenile Hall?
    ... the pictures of the Flanders on the photo center wall?
    ... Sega is a sponsor of the show?

Nate Patrin:
    ... Bart knows who Ansel Adams is?
    ... the Homer snowman has pecs and hair?

Frederic Briere:
    ... the Bonestorm box looks just like a Genesis game box?
    ... the box has no IDSA rating?
    ... "THRILLHO" is eight characters long?

Ricardo Lafaurie:
    ... when Bart imagines the mascots ushering him to steal, he
        imagines _Luigi_ first?
    ... the fizzling flourescent light and the woman dressed in a bra
        and skirt in the "Employees Only" area?
    ... the answering machine doesn't seem to have any calling message
        on it?
    ... Maggie doesn't suck her pacifier in this episode?
    ... Lisa looks bored during taking of the family photo?
    ... the family now take their family portraits outside, whereas they
        did it at home in the TU short "Family Portrait"?

Jussi Pakkanen:
    ... the spikes on the reindeers' reins?
    ... how bright Millhouse's TV is?
    ... Don Brodka is pretty sure people think his name is a joke?
    ... Don Brodka's first name is Donald?
    ... Bart doesn't spend his Christmas in Juvenile Hall?
    ... the mouse hole in Juvenile Hall?
    ... how the lighting changes when Bart says "I'll show them what a
        black sheep can do"?
    ... Lee Carvallo's Putting Challenge is a typical modern computer
        game: it has no playing content whatsoever?
    ... all video games have very grainy graphics?

Yuval Kfir:
    ... Bart actually says "I did it" (cf. "I didn't do it!")?
    ... Homer is sketching a BBQing-robot in bed (when Bart's punishment
        is considered) -- inventing something?
    ... the answering machine is of the older variety with the regular-
        sized casette?

Voice credits

- Starring
    - Dan Castellaneta (Krusty, hip Santa, Mario, Sonic, Santa in store,
      guard in Bart's fantasy, photographer, Abe)
    - Julie Kavner (Marge)
    - Nancy Cartwright (Bart, Gavin, Nelson)
    - Yeardley Smith (Lisa)
    - Hank Azaria (comic store guy, Luigi, Lee Carvallo)
    - Harry Shearer (Krusty Christmas special announcer, Donkey Kong,
      Santa in Bart's fantasy)
- Special Guest Voice
    - Phil Hartman (Troy McClure)
    - Lawrence Tierney (Don Brodka)
- Also Starring
    - Pamela Hayden (boy in Bonestorm commercial, Milhouse, Jimbo)
    - Tress MacNeille (girl in Bonestorm commercial)
    - Maggie Roswell (Mrs. Van Houten, Gavin's mother)

Movie (and other) references

  + John Donne's "Holy Sonnet #7" {ddg}
    - episode title (the sonnet begins "Death be not proud")
    - "Death Be Not Proud" is also a book by John Gunther {bwd}
  + "Monty Python's Flying Circus" {jp}
    - couch gag features Terry Gilliam-esque animation and sound
    - "Angus Podgorny" was the Scotsman played by Michael Palin on an
      episode of "Flying Circus" {th2}
  + Little Debbie cupcakes {th}
    - "Li'l Sweetheart Cupcakes"
  + Brazilian singer Xuxa ("SHOO-sha")
    - Xoxchitla looks like her and has a similar name
  + "Slim Jim" commercial {br}
    - Bonestorm commercial very similar:
        - two bored kids looking for something interesting to do
        - a macho guy (in the actual commercial, he's a pro wrestler)
          bursts in on them, causing havoc in the process
        - the big guy's tag line, "You want excitement?!" is exactly the
          same as used on the commercial
  + "Forrest Gump" {br}
    - Marge appropriates "Life is like a box of chocolates" from the
  + "Bart Simpson's Guide to Life", page 36 {hl}
    - to cure hiccups, "Place a wastebasket over your head and have
      someone play the drum solo from In-a-gadda-da-vida"
    Lee Trevino, the golfer {th}
    - Lee Carvallo is probably a reference to him (same looks, voice)
    - a video "Lee Trevino's Fighting Golf" exists, similar to name of
      video game {rl}
  + "Mortal Kombat" etc. video games
    - in the commercial for Bonestorm, the two characters fighting on
      the screen bear a large resemblance to Goro from MK
    - and, the character fighting the tank looks like Liu Kang from MK2
  + "Pic N Save" stores {ert}
    - "Try-N-Save" has a similar name
  + "Alien Autopsy" show on Fox {jm}
    - "Celebrity Autopsy" video game likely a reference to it
  + "The Critic" {br2}
    - Shatner hosts a ficticious "Celebrity Autopsy" show on a previous
      "Critic" episode
  + "A Streetcar Named Desire" {dh}
    - "A Streetcar Named Death" video game
  + "SimCity" etc. video games {dh}
    - "SimReich" video game
  + "Operation: Wolf" video game {rl}
    - "Operation: Resume" video game
  + "They Saved Hitler's Brain" {hp}
    - "Save Hitler's Brain" video game
  + "Vegas Kid" {rl}
    - "Canasta Master" is a parody
  + "Bloodstorm" video game {np}
    - Gavin refers to this game, and it really exists (see below)
  + "Donkey Kong", "Mario Brothers", etc. video games
    - Mario, Luigi, and Donkey Kong (characters from these games) try to
      talk Bart into stealing
  + "Sonic the Hedgehog" etc. video games
    - Sonic tries to talk Bart into stealing
  + "SimCity" video game
    - "SimReich" is visible in the display case
  + the Maxell tape commercial from the 70s
    - Milhouse sitting in front of the TV with windswept hair is
      straight from the commercial

Previous episode references

- [MG25] The Simpsons get their family portrait taken {rl}
- [MG31] Bart is a shoplifter {rl}
- [7G07] "Four-finger discount" (originally "five-finger") {ddg}
- [7G08] "The best present a mother could get" said by Marge in Bart's
  fantasy about that tatoo {jrc}
- [MG47], [7G08] Christmas episodes {rl}, {ddg}
- [7F07] Bart wants something just because someone else has it {dy}
- [7F13], [1F07] "Thou shalt not steal" {ddg} {hl}
- [8F04] Milhouse has a Krusty walkie-talkie {ddg}
- [8F05], [9F16] Krusty's Jewishness is mentioned {tl}, {jl}
- [8F20] Krusty starts to tell the joke about the twelve-inch pianist
- [9F14] Homer imagines himself with huge pecs {dh}
- [2F21] Homer trashes the "Police Academy" movies {jp}

Freeze frame fun

- Try-N-Save sign: {rl}
     T R Y - N - S A V E
   "In honor of the birth of
    our savior, Try-N-Save
    is open all Christmas"
- The video games in the store: {ddg}
    - Electronic Biathalon
    - Bonestorm
    - Canasta Master
    - Operation: Rescue
    - Angus Podgorny's Caper Toss (see below)
    - Swim Meet
    - A Streetcar Named Death
    - Celebrity Autopsy
    - Robot Stampede
    - SimReich
    - Save Hitler's Brain
- Juvenile Hall: {rl}
       J U V E N I L E   H A L L
   Proud home of the Soap Bar Beating
- Stuff in the Try-N-Save: {rl}
    -  FOLDING

Animation, continuity, and other goofs

Since when has Marge done that bedtime ritual?  {dh}

The comic book guy's desk is in a different place in 7F21 and 2F32.

The stairs at the Van Houtens should be considerably steeper.  {dh}

Bart's coat magically appears on his body in between when he's in
Milhouse's room, and when he's being shooed down the stairs.  {jp}

Milhouse lives in a one-story house in this episode, but Mrs. Van Houten
keeps shooing him down the stairs anyway.  {th}

"Angus Podgorny's Caper Toss" should be _Caber_ Toss.  {ddg}

The security guard knows Bart's phone number without asking him.  {ddg}

The surveillance tape shows Bart taking the game over and over again,
rather than continuing to show what was taped after Bart took the game.

The copy of Bonestorm Bart takes in the surveillance video is a
different color than all the other games.  {dh}

The kettles aren't on the stove before Marge mentions them.  {dh}

Marge should know that Bart is capable of shoplifting from the Tracey
Ullman short "Shoplifting".  {rl}

The struts in the baby gate Homer slides across the doorway become much
thicker.  {dh}

At the end, in the exterior shot of the house, the car(s) in the
driveway are missing.  {dy}

When putting on the green, the flagstick must be lifted from the hole.


Don Del Grande: B-Plus - It started out good, got boring in the middle,
    then became funny again near the end.  Hard to think of any
    improvements considering the plot line.

Erik Berliner: This was a good episode that could have been better.
    There was some good characterization of Bart, and some much needed
    insight into Marge, but this was as close as we've come to Stupid
    Homer in a long time, and that could have been avoided.  My Grade:

Nelson Seggley: This episode was excellent.  To begin with, I think the
    premise of Bart as a shoplifter was long overdue.  Homer seems to be
    back to his humor-by-stupidity phase, which I applaud.  And
    everything with Milhouse got a thumbs up from me.  Overall rating:

Adam Lipkin: Hmm.  Good premise, but I'm not sure if it was pulled off
    well.  It seemed much shorter than half an hour for some reason.
    Decidedly average, I think, overall.  The blackboard gag was
    excellent, though.  B-/C+.

Haynes Lee: Certainly not as memorable as the other Christmas episode.
    Unfortunately the show already had touched on the stealing-is-a-sin
    theme in "Homer the Heretic".  Just a basic retread of other child-
    rearing themes with very little Christmas theme.  Grade: C-.

Tony Hill: More holiday trouble for the Simpsons.  I usually don't find
    the ones with unfunny plots very memorable or deserving of high
    grades, but this one is good for a B-.  A funny subplot would have
    helped.  But the lampooning of the commercialization of Christmas
    was quite good.

Benjamin Robinson: A low key -- perhaps TOO low key -- episode; this one
    seemed almost downbeat, especially for most of the third act.
    Still, this was an interesting tale, if not all that funny.  I liked
    the way they conveyed Bart's emotional isolation from his parents.
    The closing credits were hilarious; don't miss them to get a snack.

Matthew Kurth: No characterization, forced continuity, and worst of all
    - forced emotion.  In other words - one of the biggest pieces of
    tripe to come out of the Gracie Films offices since 2F17.

Scott Fujimoto: There were some funny scenes (the comic book shop, the
    Bonestorm commercial) but a lot of the jokes felt flat to me.  The
    highlight was the great interplay and characterizations between
    Marge and Bart -- not overplayed, but nuanced and believable.  I
    can't say the same for Milhouse.  Grade: C+/B-.

Dominik Halas: Although there were many hilarious moments, some of the
    humor seemed unnatural and forced, like in the bad old days of the
    sixth season.  The sentimental moments were, however, genuinely
    touching, making it a satisfactory Christmas episode.  Grade: B-.

Mark Richey: This episode was funny, but the plot reeked of "Very
    Special Episode".  Frankly, it wouldn't shock me to see this plot on
    an episode of, oh, I don't know, "Home Improvement".  I did like the
    emphasis on the relationship between Bart and Marge; however, OFF
    needs to get away from typical sit-com plots.  Grade: C+

Aaron Varhola: Awful.  Homer was at his doofus Fifth Season worst, Marge
    was overplayed as a doting mother, and Lisa was a non-entity; Lisa
    should have been a more active conscience.  One _big_ question: why
    would Bart follow Jimbo and Nelson?  Did Mike Scully even see "The
    Tell-Tale Head"?  Grade: F.

Nate Patrin: Well, a Simpsons episode without a completely convoluted
    and bizarre plotline may have seemed welcome, but it did seem like
    standard sitcom fare and not the usual Simpsons subversiveness we're
    used to...Coulda been funnier, coulda been worse. 6.5.

Frederic Briere: "Sentimental" episodes, like 3F01 and 3F06, didn't get
    to me recently.  I was wondering if I had become cold-hearted, but
    this one proved me wrong.  I guess I was touched by its simplicity:
    a dysfunctional Xmas in a dysfunctional family.  Of course, the
    videogame references made this even more enjoyable.  (B+)

Michael K. Neylon: This was an episode that probably hit close to home
    to most of us, with the charactization of Bart and Marge excellently
    portraying this awkward time of growth.  The only drawback was
    Lisa's characterization: slightly more immature that usual.  A
    memorable episode for the writing.  A+.

Yours truly: Ehh.  Some funny moments (Milhouse yelling to his mother,
    all the video game titles), but I wasn't particularly touched.  Once
    again, a fine casting choice: Lawrence Tierney was perfect as
    Brodka.  Grade: C.

Comments and other observations


Nate Patrin says, "This is an actual game (!) which Gavin refers to at
    the Try-N-Save.  I saw it once; it's a bad Mortal Kombat ripoff in
    which you get to cut the arms, legs and heads off your opponents.
    Oddly enough, I read somewhere in a magazine that `Bloodstorm looks
    like a satirical game one would see on an episode of the Simpsons...
    ' Strange coincidence?  As far as I know (and hope), however, there
    isn't a `Bloodstorm 2'."

Ricardo Lafaurie adds, "Oh, yeah, _that_ game!  Many of you have
    probably _not_ seen BloodStorm, but its very similar predecessor,
    `Time Killers', which was in more arcades than BloodStorm.  They
    were both made by Strata, and feature lots of blood, gore, and guts
    but little in the side of gameplay.  Also, `Bloodstorm' has not been
    released on a home system due to its lack of success in the arcades.
    It just goes to show you that horrifying carnage does _not_ make a
    good game.  Horrifying carnage and 3-D graphics make a good game!"

The "Operation: Rescue" video game

I missed both jokes here the first time.  Ricardo Lafaurie correctly
    points out that it's a pun on the actual "Operation: Wolf" video
    game.  And better yet, Jean-Marc Vezien reminded me what "Operation:
    Rescue" actually is: it's a group of pro-lifers who hang out in
    front of abortion clinics and try to talk women out of getting
    abortions as they walk in.  Actually, I think they're actually quite
    a lot more invasive than that -- someone from talk.abortion can
    probably provide more details.

Cup and ball

Ricardo Lafaurie says, "This was a fad during the closing of the '80s,
    and they even developed worldwide competitions for this thing in
    Latin America!  I should know because I lived in El Salvador at the

Allan Sherman

Tony Hill notes, "Allan Sherman was a comic balladeer.  The album
    featuring `Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah' was called `My Son, the

Lawrence Tierney

Tierney does the voice for Don Brodka in this episode.  Steve Ferra
    provides some information on the actor: he's an actual ex-con "who
    might be best known for his role as Joe Cabot, the `mastermind' who
    put the group of crooks together in `Reservoir Dogs'."  Dave Kathman
    says his first big role was as John Dillinger in 1945.

Ricardo Lafaurie provides some more background, courtesy of Bill Takacs:
    "Legendary Hollywood `tough guy', on screen and off.  Remembered as
    the title character in `Dillinger' (1945) and as the consummately
    brutal lover of Claire Trevor in `Born to Kill' (1947).  Notorious
    also for his frequent, well-publicized past involvements in public
    altercations -- like barroom brawls -- and other real-life
    manifestations of rowdiness.  (In a 1973 incident, he managed to get
    himself stabbed.)  Though now a puffy-faced, totally bald old man,
    he continues as screen actor to project the hard-as-nails mien that
    has been ingrained since his younger days, as he evidences quite
    amply in Quentin Tarantino's `Reservoir Dogs' (1992)."  His first
    role was Louie in 1943's "The Ghost Ship", and at the time of this
    writing, his latest movie role was a mover in "Junior" (1994).  He
    also appeared on "Star Trek: The Next Generation"'s 1988 episode
    "The Big Goodbye", playing Cyrus Redblock.

Where is Springfield?

Tony Hill writes, "In Bart's fantasy, the `gifts' come from the Port
    Authority, which is a significant agency only in New York City-
    Northeastern New Jersey, in my experience; Mrs. Van Houten said
    Mechanicsburg without naming a state, suggesting that it's the same
    state that Springfield is in, probably Pennsylvania."

Video games in this episode

Frederic Briere opines, "The system shown on TV is too large to be
    anything other than a Sony PlayStation; it also has the same color
    and controller ports.  However, the top is rounded like the `older'
    Sega Genesis, and the controllers clearly have the same
    shape/color/configuration than those of the Sega Saturn.
    This system is cartridge-based, and has the graphic and sound
    capabilities of an old 8-bit system -- slightly better than "Video
    Boxing" in [7G06].  Moreover, numeric pads are from the Coleco era,
    with the exception of the Atari Jaguar.
    I wonder why Bart's drooling on such a game...Mortal Kombat on
    Genesis would even be better than _this_!"

Quotes and Scene Summary

On the TV...

Announcer: It's a Krusty Kinda Khristmas, brought to you by ILG: selling
           your body's chemicals after you die.  And by Li'l Sweetheart
           Cupcakes -- a subsidiary of ILG.
   Krusty: [walking in with a turkey] Oh, hi!  I didn't hear you come
           in.  Welcome to my home.
            [outside the "window", Kent Brockman prepares for a
           Ho, ho.  [closing the blind] Say, did I hear some carolers?
            [walks over to door, opens it]
 Carolers: Come, they told me...
   Krusty: Hey!  It's respected private citizen Tom Landry!  And South
           American sensation Xoxchisha -- Xoxchoshe -- Xox -- oh, boy.
            [walks away]
Announcer: Now, stay tuned for a video Christmas card from Tupac Shapur.
-- We wish you a gangsta Christmas, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Lisa and Bart are watching the show.

 Lisa: Hey, I thought Krusty was Jewish.
 Bart: Christmas is a time when people of _all_ religions come together
       to worship Jesus Christ.
        [on TV, a commercial for a really violent video game plays]
        [a Liu Kang-like character fights against a tank, and dies]
 Kids: [yawn] Bor-ing!
        [the house starts to shake; a hip "Santa" crashes through the
        [the reindeer growl and rear at the kids]
 Kids: Heelp!
Santa: You want excitement?!  Shove _this_ up your stocking!
        [uses a bazooka to shoot a cartridge into the video game
 Bart: [happily] Whoa!
        [on TV, the kids play a ridiculously violent fighting video
 Lisa: [nonplussed] Hmm, that looks entertaining.
 Bart: [drooling] Oh, yeah.
Santa: So tell your folks, "Buy me Bonestorm or go to Hell!"
-- The power of advertising, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Marge and Homer are in the kitchen when Bart walks in.

 Bart: Buy me Bonestorm or go to Hell!
Marge: Bart!
Homer: Young man, in this house, we use a little word called "please".
 Bart: It's the coolest video game ever!
Marge: I'm sorry, honey, but those games cost up to and including $70.
       And they're violent, and they distract you from your schoolwork.
 Bart: Those are all good points, but the problem is they don't result
       in me getting the game.
Homer: I know how you feel, Bart.  When I was your age, I wanted an
       electric football game more than anything in the world.  And my
       parents bought it for me, and it was the happiest day of my life.
       [pause] Well, good night.  [walks out]
-- Homer inadvertently forgets the point, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart lies on top of his bed that night, dejected.

 Bart: Ohh, I'll never get that game.
Marge: [walking in] Tuck-in time!
        [singing] All aboard the sleepy train
       To visit Mother Goose.
       Barty's stop is Snoozyland
       To rest his sweet caboose.
 Bart: Mom, I'm not a little kid any more!  Tuck-in time is lame.
Marge: Well, if loving my kids is lame, then I guess I'm just a big
 Bart: Mom, it's lame to be proud of being lame.
Marge: Well, life is like a box of chocolates --
 Bart: Mom -- no!  Mom --
Marge: You never know --
        [Bart puts a pail on his head and starts banging it]
        [he stops for a second and looks out from it]
Marge: -- what you're going to get --
        [Bart resumes the pounding]
-- "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart walks unhappily down the street the next day.  His spirits brighten
when he spots an ad in a store window for Bonestorm for 99 cents.

     Bart: [dumps money on counter] I want to buy a copy of Bonestorm.
           Here's 99 cents.
Comic guy: [sighs] Allow me to summarize the proposed transaction: you
           wish to purchase Bonestorm for 99 cents.  Net profit to me,
           negative $59.
            [opens cash register] Oh, oh please, take my $59.  I don't
           want it.  It's yours.
            [Bart reaches as if to do so]
           Eh, eh, eh -- it seems we are unfamiliar with sarcasm.  I
           shall close the register at this point [does so] and state
           that 99 cents is the rental price.
     Bart: Oh, then may I please rent it?  Please?
Comic guy: No you may not.  I am all out.  Though I do have a surprising
           abundance of Lee Carvallo's Putting Challenge.
     Bart: [moaning] Ohh...
-- With Goro as your caddy, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart walks back down the street, still dejected.  Passing one house, he
sees lights flashing brightly inside and hears the sound of lightning.

    Bart: Milhouse has Bonestorm!
           [inside, Milhouse's hair is being blown back from the TV]
Milhouse: This is great...and all I've done is enter my name!
           [screen shows "WELCOME THRILLHO"]
    Bart: [walking in] Say, cool dude, can I play too?
Milhouse: [scrambling] Uh, uh, it's only a one player game.
    Bart: Then how come it says "Second player score"?
Milhouse: [pause] Mom!  Bart's swearing!
-- Sure-fire ejection techniques, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Mrs. Van Houten ignores Bart's protestations as she kicks him out of the
house.  Bart goes to the Try-N-Save and stands outside the entrance.

 Bart: Hmm.  Maybe if I stand next to the games looking sad, someone
       will feel sorry for me and buy me one.
        [goes inside, puts hand through hole in display case window and
       holds a copy of Bonestorm]
        [his arm gets crushed by an employee opening the case]
Woman: Gavin, don't you already have this game?
Gavin: No, Mom, you idiot!  I have Bloodstorm, and Bone Squad, and
       Bloodstorm II, stupid.
Woman: Oh, I'm sorry, honey.  We'll take a Bonestorm.
Gavin: Get two.  I'm not sharing with Kaitlin!
        [employee does so]
 Bart: [dreamy] That must be the happiest kid in the world.
-- Bart's keen eye for detail, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Jimbo and Nelson walk up to Bart.

 Jimbo: Psst.  Hey, Simpson: check this out.
         [lifts hat to reveal football concealed underneath]
Nelson: Look what I got!
         [pulls back jean vest to reveal a new one underneath]
        It's the kind I like.
  Bart: Are you guys shoplifting?
 Jimbo: Four-finger discount, dude.
Nelson: Shoplifting is a victimless crime, like punching someone in the
         [they walk off laughing]
-- Yeah, the only victim is Moe, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart sees that the video game display case has been left open.  He eyes
Bonestorm and looks worried.  Several video game characters cajole him.

       Luigi: Go ahead-a, Bart, take-a the Bonestorm.
       Mario: The store, she's so rich.  She'll-a never notice.
 Donkey Kong: Duh, it's the company's fault for making you want it so
Lee Carvallo: Don't do it, son.  How's that game going to help your
       Sonic: Just take it!  Take it, take it, take it, take it, take
              it.  Take it!
-- The voices of video game conscience, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart cannot resist: he takes a copy, puts it in his coat, zips it up,
and walks out.

  Bart: I'm outside.  I got away with it.  I'm free!
         [a hand falls on his shoulder]
Brodka: Son, would you open your coat, please?
  Bart: Uh...I don't think this is the kind of coat that opens.
Brodka: Please step back in the store, Son.
 Woman: That boy's parents must have made some terrible mistakes.
 Gavin: Shut up, Mom.
-- "Marge Be Not Proud"

[End of Act One.  Time: 6:13]

Bart gets walked toward the back of the store.  He passes a Santa Claus
who tries to hand him a candy cane, but the store detective says "No,
no, not for him," walking on by.  "Oh," frowns Santa, "I see."  The two
walk back to where the mannequins are stored and up to the detective's
office.  Eventually, the detective puts a videotape in the VCR and
starts it.  The screen shows "Shoplifters Beware."

Troy: Hi, I'm Troy McClure.  You might remember me from such public
      service videos as "Designated Drivers: The Lifesaving Nerds" and
      "Phony Tornado Alarms Reduce Readiness".  I'm here today to give
      you the skinny on shoplifting, thereby completing my plea bargain
      with the good people at "Foot Locker" of Beverly Hills.
       [scene switch] Shoplifting began here, in ancient Phonecia.
      Thieves would literally lift the corner of a shop in order to
      snatch the sweet, sweet olives within.  [a man does so]
      Oh, Shakazaramesh, will you ever learn?  Flash forward to ancient
      Babylonia --
-- Troy McClure, public service guy, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Brodka: [pounding the TV off] All right, show's over.
  Bart: Er, excuse me?
Brodka: You think you're pretty smart, don't you?
  Bart: No.
Brodka: Don't smart off to me, smart guy!
  Bart: [stammering] I could pay for the game.  I'll pay for it!
Brodka: You know, that kind of mush might fly at Lamps Plus, but don't
        peddle it here.
         [Bart laughs nervously]
Brodka: That's it, Mr. Comedian.  I'm calling your parents!
-- Bart, misunderstood, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Brodka dials the phone while Bart looks unhappy.

Brodka: Hello, Mr. and Mrs. Simpson?  This is detective Don Brodka from
        Try-N-Save security.  That's right, Don Brodka.  Your son Bart
        has been caught shoplifting.  Uh huh.  Yeah, it's a shame, I
        know, but...well, _try_ and have a merry Christmas.
         [hangs up] They weren't home, uh huh.  But I left a message on
        their answering machine, that's right.
  Bart: Um, OK.  I've really, really, _really_ learned my lesson.  Can I
        please go now?
Brodka: Yeah, get out of my sight.
         [Bart starts to run away]
        Hey, kid: one more thing.  If you _ever_ set foot in this store
        again, you'll be spending Christmas in juvenile hall.  Capisce?
         [Bart looks blank]
        Well, do you understand?
  Bart: Everything except "capisce".
-- He's weak in the romance languages, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Brodka tries eating some of those crackers 'n' cheez things, but the
cracker breaks as he tries to spread the cheez on it and he curses.

Bart rides home in a panic, intent on changing the answering machine
tape.  Homer, Marge, and Maggie drive by, with Homer just as intent on
changing Maggie once they arrive home.  Espying his parents, Bart takes
a short cut.

  Homer: [pushing "Play"] Hmm, we didn't have a message when we left.
         How very odd.
Machine: [singing] Hello, Muddah, hello, Faddah.  Here I am at Camp
  Homer: Marge, is Lisa at Camp Granada?
   Bart: [chuckles, holding real answering machine tape] Now to put this
         tape where no one will ever listen to it.
          [puts it in an Allan Sherman case]
-- No Sherman fans in Springfield, "Marge Be Not Proud"

In the kitchen, Marge opens the refrigerator.

Marge: Homer, didn't you get any milk?  All I see is egg nog.
Homer: 'Tis the season, Marge!  We only get thirty sweet noggy days.
       Then the government takes it away again.  [pours some on his
 Lisa: [chokes on her cereal] I think I'm having chest pains.
        [Bart walks in, whistling]
Marge: Bart, get your suit on.
 Bart: What for?
Marge: We're getting our Christmas picture taken.
 Bart: Ehh, you lucked out, Marge, my man, 'cause I'm in a smiling mood
Marge: [laughs] Well, good!  So get ready, and before you know it, we'll
       be at the Try-N-Save.
 Bart: [pauses] Try-N-Save?
        [steam appears to blow from his ears]
Marge: Ah, my teapots are ready.
-- When smiles turn to frowns, "Marge Be Not Proud"

As Bart ties his tie, he looks in the mirror and remembers Brodka's
warning: "If you ever set foot in this store again, you'll be spending
Christmas in juvenile hall...juvenile hall...juvenile hall..." Bart
imagines what it will be like.  In his dream, Kearney, Dolph, Nelson,
and Jimbo are in a barracks-style room with him.

 Guard: Stand behind the yellow line!  You will now receive your
        Christmas presents donated by the Port Authority lost and found
         [the bullies move forward one at a time to a laundry slot]
        Pass your chit to Santa to receive your gift.  If you do not
        have a chit, you will not receive a gift.
 Jimbo: Wow!  The March 8th newspaper.
Nelson: Cool!  A book of carpet samples.
  Bart: [crosses fingers] Come on, new bike!
         [drops chit in slot]
         [groans] Ohh, a soiled wig.
 Santa: [through a speaker] Merry Christmas and a happy new year.
-- Bart's juvenile hall fantasy, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart gulps as he returns to reality.

Marge: [calling out] Bart, what's taking so long?  If you're having that
       problem with your zipper, I can send your father up.
Homer: Oh, no I'm not.
        [Bart runs downstairs]
Marge: What's the matter with your face?  Is that a fake nose?  Are you
       wearing chin putty?
 Bart: I don't have to listen to these wild allegations!
        [knocks his nose off by accident; SLH eats it]
Marge: Please, Bart, no more pranks.  It would mean so much to me if we
       could have just one nice family photo.
        [shot of family photo with crosseyed Bart]
        [shot of family photo with Bart wearing a mustache]
        [shot of family photo with Bart holding an "I stink!" speech
       balloon next to Homer]
Homer: Hey, I don't remember saying that!
-- Homer, unclear on the concept, "Marge Be Not Proud"

On the way there, Bart sits in the back seat looking nervous.

 Marge: Uh oh, almost forgot to lock the doors.
         [the locks slam down like a jail cell door closing]
  Bart: [groaning] Ohh...
         [the seat back turns into Brodka]
Brodka: I hope you're going to the Valley Vista Try-N-Save, kid, 'cause
        you don't want to come to my store.  Catfische?
         [seat-back Brodka puts his cigarette out in the ashtray]
-- At least Bart's fantasies are sanitary, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Homer pulls into a parking space at the Try-N-Save.  Bart lags a little
behind the rest of the family as they walk in.

 Bart: [smiling nervously] So we're just going to do this photo and get
       out, right?  Budda bing, budda boom.
 Lisa: I want to look at the pets, and write things on the typewriters,
       and see if the new dictionaries are in!
Marge: OK.
Homer: I want to price some flip flops, and smell the new tires, and
       consult the pharmacist for some free medical advice!
Marge: Sure!  We're going to have a great day.  Budda bing, budda boom,
       right, Bart?  Bart?  What's wrong, honey?
        [Bart stands far back, looking around]
Homer: Uh oh...somebody's got tired little legs!
        [grabs Bart, puts him on his shoulders]
-- Approaching the doors of death, "Marge Be Not Proud"

As they enter, Bart sees a security camera swiveling around and he tries
to avoid it as Homer looks around.  "Hmm," asks Homer, "I wonder where
the flip flops are?  Men's wear?  Maybe in sporting goods.  Wait!  No,
sleep wear.  Oh -- probably better living."  He puts Bart down in a
chair, away from the eye of the camera, and Bart sighs with relief --
only to run away nervously as alarms go off and arrows flash at the
chair: "Folding chair riot!  $9.99!"

Marge looks dreamily at a jeweled watch in a display case.

Marge: Oh, Homey, look at that watch.  I've always wanted a watch like
Homer: [sly] Well, maybe someone will give you one for Christmas.
Marge: Mmm.
Homer: [thinking] Now she'll _really_ be surprised when she opens that
       ironing board cover!
-- The spirit of giving, "Marge Be Not Proud"

The family go to the portrait studio section of the store.  Homer spies
a Time magazine with Ned Flanders on the cover and a caption "Man of the
Century".  Homer scoffs, "Must have been a pretty slow century."  The
photographer adjusts the angle of Lisa's hat, then has everyone sit on a
decorative old-fashioned love seat.

  Bart: [looking into the distance] [gasps] The store detective!
         [to photographer] Hey, Ansel Adams, let's go.  Take the photo!
 Marge: Oh, wait!  Wait, I don't want Maggie's face hidden behind that
         [she takes it out; Maggie starts to cry]
Photog: Don't worry, momma: I can put a smile on baby's face.  [grabs a
        balloon] OK, sugarplum, it's time to meet Mr. Funny Voice.
         [breathes from the balloon] Hello, I -- oh, it's just air.
-- So much for _that_ impression, "Marge Be Not Proud"

The store detective walks down a closer aisle and Bart says, "Come on,
hurry up!"  The photographer counts to three, then takes the photo just
as Bart is being snatched away by the collar.

Brodka: I thought I told you, don't return for busted merchandise!
 Homer: What are you doing to my son?
Brodka: I'm afraid your son broke the eleventh commandment: Thou shalt
        not steal.
 Marge: That's crazy.  Bart's not a shoplifter: he's just a little boy.
Brodka: Oh, sure, _now_ he's just a little boy stealing little toys.
        But some day, he'll be a grown man stealing stadiums and -- and
 Marge: My son may not be perfect, but I know in my heart he's not a
         [Brodka puts in the videotape and starts playing it]
 Marge: Fine, play the tape.  Then everyone can see you've got the wrong
         [surveillance camera shows Bart standing in front of video
  Bart: [blocking the TV] Wait!  Mom, I don't want you to see this.
         [behind him, the tape plays on the wall of TVs for sale]
        I did it.
         [the camera repeatedly shows him stealing the game; the crowd
 Marge: Oh, Bart.
-- Caught in the act, "Marge Be Not Proud"

[End of Act Two.  Time: 13:58]

Homer chastises Bart at home.

Homer: How _could_ you?!  Haven't you learned anything from that guy who
       gives those sermons at church?  Captain Whatshisname?  We live in
       a society of laws.  Why do you think I took you to all those
       "Police Academy" movies?  For fun?  Well, I didn't hear anybody
       laughing!  Did you?!  Except at that guy who made sound effects.
        [Homer makes some and laughs to himself]
       Where was I?  Oh yeah: stay out of my booze.
 Bart: [pained] Mom, I'm _really_ sorry.
Marge: [emotionless] I know you are.
 Bart: Is there anything I can do?
Marge: I don't know.  [pause] Why don't you go to bed?
 Bart: [hesitant] OK...
-- The real punishment begins, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Marge looks at the photo unhappily, then hangs it above the stockings
and fireplace.  It slides askance, and she sighs.  Upstairs, Bart and
Lisa brush their teeth.

Bart: Man, I thought Mom was going to scream me stupid.  She didn't even
      raise her voice.
Lisa: I admit I haven't known Mom as long as you have, but I know when
      she's really upset.  Her heart won't just wipe clean like this
      bathroom countertop: it absorbs everything that touches it, like
      this bathroom rug.
Bart: [looks at rug] Really?  You think _this_ might be one of those
      forever-type things?
Lisa: [with her mouth full] I don't know.
-- The bathroom: the metaphor for life, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart walks gingerly out over the filthy rug and climbs into bed.  He
hears Marge singing in Lisa's room.

Marge: [in Lisa's room] Lisa's on a Sleepy Train
       To rest her weary head.
       Her ticket is a candy cane
       Made out of gingerbread.
 Lisa: [giggles] Good night, Mom.
Marge: Good night, sweetheart.  [footsteps]
 Bart: Oh, great.  The Tuck-In Express is right on time.
Marge: [standing in doorway] Good night.  [shuts door]
-- The Tuck-In TGV, more like it, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Homer sits up in bed with his half-moon glasses on as Marge exits the
bathroom to join him.

Homer: I've figured out the boy's punishment.  First, he's grounded.  No
       leaving the house, not even for school.  Second, no egg nog.  In
       fact, no nog, period.  And third, absolutely no stealing for
       three months.
Marge: I always thought I understood my special little guy, but
       somewhere along the road, his hand slipped away from mine.
        [looks at a handprint of "Bart, age 4"]
Homer: Ehh, what are you going to do?
Marge: [pause] Mmm.  He's not my little baby any more.  Maybe I mother
       him too much.
-- The coming of age, "Marge Be Not Proud"

She turns out the light.  That night, it snows, and the next morning,
the world is white.  Bart walks downstairs and into the kitchen yawning;
the rest of the family is already eating.

 Bart: [hurt] Hey, Mom, you didn't wake me up.
Marge: Here's your hot chocolate.
 Bart: [looking at other cups] You didn't put my marshmallow in.
Marge: I think you're old enough to do it yourself now.
 Bart: OK, I can handle that.
        [puts a marshmallow in; it absorbs all the hot chocolate]
        [Bart dumps it out on a plate and uses a knife and fork on it]
  Abe: Hey!  Give me a slice.
-- A bold new flavor sensation, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart goes over to discuss the situation with Milhouse.

    Bart: Milhouse...do you ever worry that your mom might stop loving
Milhouse: What?  I'm more worried about pirhanas.  Did you see that
          movie where they send a nuclear submarine to fight the
          pirhanas, and one of them swims right down the periscope and
          bites the guy in the eye, and he goes, "Aah!  Aah!  Aah!", and
          that old lady told him it would happen?
    Bart: [unenthusiastic] Yeah, that was pretty good.  Hey, how come
          you're not playing Bonestorm?
Milhouse: Ehh, it got boring.  I'm really into this cup and ball now.
           [starts playing with it] Whoa!  Wow!  [laughs] Man, you never
          know which way this crazy ball's going to go!  [laughs]
    Bart: Yeah, right.  You're just trying to trick me because you don't
          want me playing with your video game.
Milhouse: Here, go ahead.  [gives him the cartridge]
    Bart: No.  Let me try the cup and ball.
Milhouse: [indignant] Get your own!
    Bart: Come on, don't be a cup and ball hog!
Milhouse: Hey!  Give it.  That's mine!
           [they struggle for it, yelling at each other]
          Mom!  Bart's smoking!
-- Indoors, no less (worse than Hitler), "Marge Be Not Proud"

Mrs. Van Houten pushes Bart down the stairs and towards the door.

   Bart: OK!  I won't bug Milhouse.  But...well...Mrs. Van Houten, this
         is going to sound kind of dumb, but...can I hang out with you
         while you do mom stuff?
          [Mrs. VH smiles]
          [in the kitchen, she puts Christmas cards in envelopes; Bart
         helps her by putting the stamps on]
   Bart: Who are Dan and Sherrie Adler?
Mrs. VH: Just friends of ours.
   Bart: Oh.  And, who is Warren Burke?
Mrs. VH: Oh.  He used to tune our piano before we got rid of it.  He
         grew up in Mechanicsburg.
   Bart: [genuinely interested] Oh, really?
Mrs. VH: Mmm.  [realizes, looks quizzically at Bart]
   Bart: [pause] Tell me I'm good.
-- Can't get enough of that wonderful mom stuff, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart walks home to hear the sound of laughter from Marge.

 Bart: Oh, hey!  That's Mom.  She's happy again!
        [runs to the yard]
        [perturbed] You guys made a snowman family?
Homer: Check it out, boy: it's like looking into a living snow mirror.
        [snow Homer has hair and large muscles]
 Bart: Why didn't you wait for me?
Marge: I didn't think you'd mind.  I figured you were getting a little
       too old for this.  But you can still make one: there's some snow
       left under the car.
        [said snow is all dirty and disgusting]
-- Thanks a lot, Mom, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart reaches under the car and scoops out some of the dirty snow.  He
fashions a grey, ugly version of himself with twigs for arms and puts it
next to the rest of the snow Simpsons.  Inside, he sees the rest of his
family watching TV.  A bird lands on the corner of snow Bart and flies
off as it crumbles.

  Bart: [muttering] Stupid family.
Nelson: Hey, Simpson, look what I swiped from Try-N-Save: it's a
        replacement tire for a wheelbarrow.
  Bart: Huh?
Nelson: I knew _you'd_ like it.  [laughs, walks off]
-- Irony, not lost on Nelson, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Bart rues, "Everyone thinks I'm the black sheep.  Well, I'll show 'em
what a black sheep can do!"  He shakes his fist at the clouds and walks
into the Try-N-Save.

 Lisa: [spraying the Christmas tree] Mom, this fake snow is making me
Marge: We're almost finished.  There's just a little bit of green left.
        [Lisa drops the can and looks catatonic]
        [Bart walks in]
Marge: There you are.  You can help me spray the cookies!
        [Bart looks at her] Are you hiding something?  What do you have
       under your jacket?
 Bart: Nothing!
Marge: Oh, Bart, not again.  Give it to me!
 Bart: I told you, I don't have anything!  [runs off]
Marge: You can't hide from me in this house, Bart.  I spend 23 hours a
       day here.
Homer: [blocking a door] Hee hee hee.  Get 'im, Ma.
-- Homer, country bumpkin, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Marge: There's no place left to run, Bart.  Hand it over.
        [he gives her a picture in a frame]
       Oh, Bart: I can't believe you did this.
        [the picture is Bart smiling; a receipt says "Paid in full"]
 Bart: I wanted to surprise you for Christmas.
Marge: Oh, sweetie, this is the best present a mother could get.
        [showers Bart with kisses] I love you so much, my little bitty
 Bart: [bashful] Mom...
-- All's well, "Marge Be Not Proud"

Marge puts the new picture atop the old picture, blocking out Bart in
the old picture.

Marge: Since I got my present early, I think you should get yours early
 Lisa: Bart got a present early?  Then I should get a present early!  I
       want a present.
Marge: Lisa, you have to wait.
 Lisa: [mutters] This is the worst Christmas ever.
Marge: Now I know you love video games, and I asked the clerk which is
       the one every boy wants --
 Bart: [opening it] [gasps] You got me --
        ["Lee Carvallo's Putting Challenge"]
        [Bart sees Marge is smiling]
        [with forced enthusiasm] Oh, yeah!  Thanks, Mom.
-- Bart, accomplished actor, "Marge Be Not Proud"

[End of Act Three.  Time: 21:10]

The background of the closing credits is a demonstration of Lee
Carvallo's Putting Challenge.  The game talks.

Lee: Welcome to Lee Carvallo's Putting Challenge.  I am Carvallo.  Now,
     choose a club.  ["beep"]
     You have chosen a three wood.  May I suggest a putter?  ["beep"]
     Three wood.  Now enter the force of your swing.  I suggest feather
     touch.  ["beep beep beep"]
     You have entered "power drive".  Now, push seven eight seven to
     swing.  ["beep beep beep"]
      [he swings; the ball bounces into the parking lot]
     Ball is in: parking lot.  Would you like to play again?  ["beep"]
     You have selected "no".
-- Parameters outside normal range, "Marge Be Not Proud"


   {jrc} James Curry
   {ddg} Don Del Grande
   {bwd} Benjamin Dreyfus
   {dh}  Dominik Halas
   {th2} Tim Harrod
   {th}  Tony Hill
   {jl}  Jose Lafaurie
   {rl}  Ricardo Lafaurie
   {hl}  Haynes Lee
   {jm}  John Murray
   {jp}  Jussi Pakkanen
   {np}  Nate Patrin
   {br2} Bob Roberds
   {br}  Benjamin Robinson
   {ert} Elson Trinidad
   {dy}  Doug Yovanovich
This episode summary is Copyright 1997 by James A. Cherry.  Not to be
redistributed in a public forum without permission.  (The quotes
themselves, of course, remain the property of The Simpsons, and the
reproduced articles remain the property of the original authors.  I'm
just taking credit for the compilation.)