[3F10] Team Homer

Team Homer                                               Written by Mike Scully
                                                      Directed by Mark Kirkland
Production code: 3F10                        Original airdate in N.A.: 6-Jan-96
                                                  Capsule revision D, 22-Feb-97

Title sequence

Blackboard :- I am not certified to remove asbestos.
              I am not certified to remove asb/ at cutoff.

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

Couch      :- The family run in and sit down as normal.  The camera
              zooms in on a mouse hole to the right of the couch, and a
              family of five mice run in and sit down on their couch.

Did you notice...

    ... the Spanish bee's name is "Pedro"?
    ... Martin's underwear also changes colors in the rain?

Tony Hill:
    ... the teenager is Lunch Lady Doris's son?
    ... Bart wears something other than his regular "uniform" this
        episode...the green-striped sweater?
    ... Hans Moleman works for BurnsoDyne?
    ... Barney's has ten lanes?  And a coffee shop?
    ... it takes Smithers two kicks to level the pins?
    ... SES begins classes at 8:00 am?
    ... Bart's socks' colors run (but no one else's do)?
    ... the grabber game has glass panels?
    ... Burns Manor has a dome?

John Murray:
    ... the Bongo comics return box in the comic store?
    ... Skinner buys his mom dresses from Mr. Boys?
    ... when Lisa is modeling the uniforms her saxophone looks as though
        it's made of pink plastic?
    ... Spanish Bee now works for channel Six, or at least plays on
        their bowling team?

Don Del Grande:
    ... in the opening, human Maggie sucks her pacifier, and mouse
        Maggie twitches her nose?
    ... Principal Skinner spent three years as a POW in North Vietnam?
    ... Homer bowls right-handed?
    ... while Homer is coming up with the idea of a team, all of the
        bowlers in the background throw nothing but strikes?
    ... with the exception of Otto's 7-10 split and Mr. Burns, everybody
        who bowls gets a strike?
    ... when the uniformed kids march to class, each line alternates
    ... when Burns bowls his last ball, one foot appears to be on the
        line?  (If it's just barely touching the line, it's probably not
        far enough over the line to trigger the foul light; however,
        American Bowling Congress rules state that touching the line is
        a foul.)
    ... the trophy appears to be a "perpetual" trophy (there's room to
        put more than one team on there), so Burns doesn't get to keep
        it, at least not for more than one year?
    ... David Mirkin is (once again) an Executive Producer of this
    ... Maggie must be in mourning over Doris Grau, as she is not in
        this episode (besides the opening)?

Doug Yovanovich:
    ... there is an uneaten and an eaten apple on Krabappel's desk?

Benjamin Robinson:
    ... the mice have "appropriate" hairdos (i.e., Homer-mouse has two
        hair strands, Marge-mouse wears her hair up, and the kid-mice
        have spiky hair)?
    ... the Maggie-mouse, in lieu of a pacifier, makes squeaky noises?
    ... the Hideo Nomo poster near the Bongo comics returns box?
    ... Homer is taking it upon himself to foot the entire $500 entry
        fee, rather than having each member pitch in $125?
    ... Springfield Elementary's girl uniforms are provided by "Mr. Boy
        for Girls?"
    ... the Homewreckers league is comprised of four people who have
        spelled trouble for the Simpsons' marriage: Mindy Simmons,
        Lurleen Lumpkin, Shauna Tifton (a.k.a.  Princess Khasmir), and
    ... Captain McAllister's bowling shirt reads simply, "Cap'n?"
    ... when Homer tosses his ball aside, it hits someone?

Ricardo Lafaurie:
    ... this is the _third_ reference to Lucky Charms?  [What's so bad
        about tasteless oats and imitation marshmallows?]
    ... Mr. Burns seems to have gotten his weakness from eating too much
        Pillsbury food?
    ... the sexual reference in "Up with Miniskirts"?
    ... Hans Moleman is white in this episode?
    ... Chesperito says "Good night, ladies" in Spanish?
    ... someone throws a shoe at Bart?
    ... the team name "DMV Regulation Kings", even though Patty and
        Selma are women?
    ... neither Lurleen nor Khasmir recognize Homer?
    ... Lurleen has improved since her stay at the Betty Ford Clinic in
    ... Burns has leprosy?
    ... Chalmers gets hit with a football, basketball, hockey puck, and
    ... the fake Oscar nearly anagrams into Doris Grau?
    ... this episode was in loving memory of Doris Grau?  (see below)

Jose Lafaurie:
    ... Burns is stronger than in previous episodes?
    ... the Pin Pals walk in with their bowling shoes already on before
        the championship game?

Bob Yantosca:
    ... Homer refers to Bart & Lisa as "my weiner kids?"
    ... Homer stole the Oscar statue belonging to Dr. Haing S. Ngor
        (Best Supporting Actor, "The Killing Fields", 1984)?  (see
    ... Homer doesn't admit that he's the one who breaks the toilet?

Dave Hall:
    ... Lenny and Carl hang around Moe's now?
    ... Moe actually takes off his apron?
    ... Homer and Marge sleep with the window curtains open?
    ... Martin joins in the rebellion too?
    ... Skinner uses a stick to handle Bart's t-shirt?
    ... Lenny is usually seen carrying a mug around SNPP?
    ... Bumble Bee Man wears his team shirt over his costume?
    ... Krusty doesn't wear his white gloves in this episode?
    ... Apu sheds a tear?
    ... Patty and Selma wear different shoes on each foot?
    ... the Springfield Police Framers wear their hats during the match?
    ... Ned bowls right-handed?
    ... how annoyed Lisa looks after donning the uniform?
    ... Homer cashes Burns' check even though it isn't made out to him?
    ... Smithers isn't wearing his ID card at Barney's Bowl-A-Rama?
    ... Jimbo wears his knit cap with his uniform?
    ... the spines of the books on Mrs. Krabappel's desk face away from
    ... the flying objects all hit Chalmers but miss Skinner?
    ... the Holy Rollers wear their bowling shoes to Barney's Bowl-A-
    ... Otto chooses the lobster harmonica over the Harvard diploma?

Jason Hancock:
    ... the bowling leagues start at 8:00 pm?

Ondre Lombard:
    ... Bart and Milhouse assume the most obvious answer to the MAD
        Fold-in caption?
    ... Moe has a light switch to his outdoor sign?
    ... Mayor Quimby's friends look and sound exactly like him?
    ... Marge implies that if she had the money, she possibly would pay
        for sex?
    ... Bart wears a sweater?
    ... Bart interrupts Mrs. Krabappel to begin his prank?
    ... Skinner has a sofa chair in his office?
    ... Springfield Elementary can afford uniforms for all the students?
    ... a criminal (Snake) bowls on a police force's team?
    ... professional bowler Jacques is beaten by the "Pin Pals"?
    ... the uniforms don't come with backpacks?

Mark Richey:
    ... someone actually wants to have sex with Barney?
    ... all four Holy Rollers bowl in the time it takes Mr. Burns's ball
        to make it down the lane?
    ... Burns's dogs finally catch someone?

Frederic Briere:
    ... Ned doesn't consider God's help as cheating?
    ... either Burns' computer has voice control capabilities (like all
        Star Trek series), or it's been pre-programmed to perform
        analysis on every employee's resemblance with "Poppin Fresh"
        (sp?) on the push of a single button?
    ... the Lovejoys are considered holy, despite their attitude towards
        their religion?  ("Have you ever _read_ this thing?")
    ... Burns' strength increases throughout the episode?  At the start,
        he's barely able to lift a ball, but at the end he can hold it

Robert Holland:
    ... Smithers' disapproving look as Homer swats Burns' butt in joy
        over their victory?

Voice credits

- Starring
    - Dan Castellaneta (Homer, Quimby, Hans Moleman, Krusty, Pedro the
      bee, Willy)
    - Julie Kavner (Marge, Selma)
    - Nancy Cartwright (Bart, Nelson, Todd)
    - Yeardley Smith (Lisa)
    - Hank Azaria (comic store guy, Moe, Quimby's drinking partner,
      bowling lane kid, Apu, Chalmers, Uncle Al, Wiggum, Snake, Luigi,
    - Harry Shearer (Otto, Skinner, Burns, Smithers, Kent Brockman, Ned,
      McAllister, Lovejoy)
- Special Guest Voice
    - Marcia Wallace (Mrs. Krabappel)
- Also Starring
    - Doris Grau (Doris)
    - Pamela Hayden (Milhouse, Jimbo)
    - Russi Taylor (Martin)

Movie (and other) references

  ~ Cinnaburst commercials {jl}
    - "Those magazines cause a disturbing amount of laughter."
  + "The Jazz Singer" {rl}
    - "I have no son!" line
  + Styx's song "Mr. Roboto"
    - Homer says "Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto", some lyrics from the song
  + "The Killing Fields" {ddg}
    - Homer has somehow acquired Dr. Haing S. Ngor's Oscar for his role
      in the movie
  + the Nancy Kerrigan incident {th}
    - masked person tries to disable a sports figure by bashing their
  + "A Wrinkle in Time" {rt}
    - children bouncing balls in unison similar to scene in the movie
  + "Caddyshack" {ddg}
    - the end of the bowling match is similar to the end of the movie's
      golf match

Previous episode references

- [SC#2] Ned Flanders' skill at bowling (the Bowlarama ad congratulating
  Flanders on bowling a perfect game) {rl}
- [7G10] Princess Khasmir appears {hl}
- [7G11], [7F13], [9F09], [2F10] Jacques appears {th}, {rl}
- [7G11] Marge's knowledge of bowling {rl}
- [7F02] Burns and Smithers catch Homer misallocating funds {hl}
- [7F03] Martin shows his rebellious, non-nerd side {dy}
- [7F09], [8F07] Homer's feeble construction skills (e.g., spice rack)
  {fb}, {dy}
- [7F10], [8F21] "Spanish Flea" is heard {hl}, {jm}
- [7F19] Asbestos is referred to {rl}
- [8F04] A mother wonders where her children picked up the word "suck"
- [8F05] "I have no son!"  {hl}
- [8F08] Homer and Moe talk alone in Moe's bar {ol}
- [8F09] Burns downs a few beers with the riff-raff {dy}
- [8F13] Burns heads up an athletic team {dy}
- [8F15] Ralph eats paste {hl}
- [8F15] Mad and Cracked are referred to {rl}
- [8F15], [9F13] Skinner has a 'Nam relapse {rl}
- [8F17] Homer approaches Mr. Burns asking for money {dy}
- [8F19], [9F10], [9F19] Lurleen Lumpkin appears {th}
- [9F14] Chalmers slowly writes down 1's and 0's (cf. Lisa for her
  science project) {fb}
- [9F14] Otto getting blotto is mentioned {rl}
- [9F18], [1F18] Skinner gets evaluated by Chalmers {hl}
- [9F20] MAD magazine fold-in tattoo on female prisoner's back {hl}
- [1F01] Homer keeps insulting everyone {fb}
- [1F02] Homer: "I won't need this anymore!"  {rl}
- [1F06] Homer calls Bart a weiner (cf. Bart and Lisa) {ol}
- [1F07] Mindy Simmons appears {th}
- [1F10], [2F06] Lucky Charms is swiped {rl}
- [1F15] a character hallucinates and meets a cartoon character from a
  TV commercial (cf. Homer meeting Mr. Clean) {dy}
- [1F15], [2F01], [3F01] Cletus appears {rl}
- [1F18] Kids take control of the school {fb}
- [2F04] Bart fights urge to fire slingshot at teacher's butt {hl}
- [2F10] Barney's uncle works the bowling alley {ddg}
- [2F17] Bart and Milhouse browse the magazine rack at the fat guy's
  comic store {dy}
- [2F21] Hans Moleman ends up in a situation leading to his death {ol}
- [3F01] Bart comes back from school roughly dressed {fb}
- [3F02] Moe admits his dislike for old people {dy}
- [3F06] Spiro Agnew is referred to {th}
- [3F06] Poppin' Fresh appears {th}

Freeze frame fun

- Magazines on rack: {hl}
    - MAD: the one & only
    - Cracked: lesser [stupider - ed] version of MAD
    - Punch: old British humor magazine that folded a few years ago
    - Sick, Sniff, Poot: joke names
- Mad fold-in text: {bjr}
           | EXAMPLE OF GODS GLORY |
        A->|                       |<-B
- The bowling teams: {th}
    - Channel 6 Wastelanders: Krusty, Brockman, Chesperito, Arnie Pye
    - Holy Rollers: Ned & Maude Flanders, Tim and Helen Lovejoy
    - DMV Regulation Kings: Patty & Selma, others
    - Springfield Police Framers: Wiggum, Snake, Eddie, Lou
    - Homewreckers: Lurleen Lumpkin, Mindy Simmons, Jacques, Princess
    - Stereotypes: Willie, Cletus, Captain McAllister, Luigi
- The Oscar: {rl}
   Homer Simpson      [written in]
   Dr. Haing S. Ngor  [crossed out]

Animation, continuity, and other goofs

There is an issue of "Punch" in the comic book store, but the last issue
of "Punch" was April 8, 1992.  (And, unlike most other magazines which
cease publication (for example, the first run of "Games"), because they
went bankrupt, "Punch" refunded all outstanding subscription balances.)

According to Homer, Barney has a mistress, but he's not married, so who
is he cheating on?  {ddg}

The pin lights that light up when Homer has his idea are only seen in
that closeup.  {mr}

Nelson usually sits in the back of the classroom.  {dh}

When Bart's class erupts, Ralph is in there eating paste, even though
he's in Lisa's class instead of Bart's.  {ddg}

Missy gets out of her desk and in the same shot, Missy runs in front of
the classroom.  {rl}

Chalmers doesn't have a pen in his pocket until he needs it.  {dh}

Chalmers falls before the mob of kids reaches him.  Also, he falls
backwards, yet he is on his stomach while the kids trample him.  {dh}

When Principal Skinner pulls Bart out of the crowd in the hallway,
Milhouse and Nelson run by them twice.  {ddg}

A fire place "magically" appears in view from Burns office door.  {dh}

Chesperito, once again, has switched allegiances.  In 9F19 he works for
channel Ocho, switches to channel Six in 1F11, then back to channel Ocho
in 3F08.  Now he's at channel Six again.

Homer and his teammates' bowling bags all appear in the same color in
one scene.  {dh}

The beer bottle caps only appear when Homer and his team mates needed
them.  {dh}

What alley would serve beer without prepayment?  {th}

Skinner silently motions for the uniforms to be brought into the
auditorium, but Willy shouldn't have been able to see this because the
auditorium doors don't have windows.  {dh}

One of Patty and Selma's teammates disappears after their match with The
Pin Pals.  Also, Patty's beer magically appears in her hand.  {dh}

The fourth bowler in the Home Wreckers was not Mindy in all shots but
the shot of them walking away.  {rl}

Why would Rev. Lovejoy want to spend his leisure hours with Ned?  In all
previous episodes, he's actively avoided him.  {dh2}

Bart is taller than usual relative to Lisa in the kitchen scene.  {th}

Why should Marge wonder where Bart picked up "suck" if she knows that he
introduced it to Milhouse in 8F04?  {rl}

Janey shows up three times in the line of kids filing past Skinner.

Krabappel calls the front wall the back wall.  (But then the two walls
are probably parallel anyway.)  {th}

The alley seems to have more lanes when Snake "bowls."  {th} [Dave Hall
counts 21 - ed]

Eddie and Lou's pockets appear on the wrong side of their chests after
Snake escapes.  {dh}

The Home Wreckers don't have name tags when we first see them.  {dh}

Shouldn't Homer's "B Sharps" Grammy be in the trophy rack?  {dh2}

In the first scene of the kids marching to class, Principal Skinner and
Lunch Lady Doris are standing at a corner, but in the next scene, they
are directly in front of a set of lockers.  {ddg}

When Lisa, Rod and Milhouse play tag, the sky is bright and blue with
white clouds.  But when Skinner and Chalmers walk through the
schoolyard, suddenly, it becomes gray-clouded and dark blue.  {ol}

When the uniforms change color, everybody's socks are purple except for
Bart (multi-colored) and Martin (white), but later all of the boys
except Bart have white socks.  {ddg}

Burns and Smithers don't have the team uniforms until they need to
present them to Homer, Apu and Moe.  {dh}

There's never been a ditch around Burns' mansion before.  {dh2}


Tony Hill: A superb episode!  Classic Bart and Bonehead Homer humor come
    together in a fabulous combination.  Plus, we see the greatest
    number of return cameos by one-shot characters in OFF history.
    Isn't it fitting that Doris Grau got such a meaty part in the first
    episode after she died?  I give TH an A!

John Murray: The episode, while not great, still managed to have some
    great scenes.  The school uniform plot seemed weak, but you can't go
    wrong with lunch lady Doris.  Mr. Burns bowling made up for it, also
    the recurring jokes added a lot to this episode.  You can't go wrong
    with Hans and death (by drill no less).  Grade: B-.

Haynes Lee: A fairly good episode which go watered down by by having two
    major unconnected plots in the same episode.  Grade: B-.

Don Del Grande: B - it's a good episode, with the occasional laugh (the
    last scene sticks out), but nothing worth shouting about.  Also, the
    uniform story didn't really go anywhere.

Dave Kathman: Eh.  Some good jokes, but it just didn't grab me.  The
    whole thing with Burns joining the team was inexplicable, though the
    writers obviously were aware of that.  The school uniform subplot
    was mildly amusing, but it would have been nice if they could have
    tied the two plots together somehow.

Scott Fujimoto: A pretty flat episode that brought up bad memories of
    the 6th season, although it improved toward the end.  There were a
    few laughs here and there, and the different team "themes" was
    amusing.  Burns was completely out of character, but the writers
    acknowledged as much at the end.  Grade: C+.

Benjamin Robinson: Rolls a 7-10 split in the first act, but eventually
    recovers to pick up the spare.  Hampered a little by silly subplot,
    and some people may object to Burns' sudden good demeanor for much
    of the episode.  Large numbers of clever little jokes save it,
    though.  (B+)

Jason Hancock: This episode was one of the best of this season.
    Sometimes I wonder if Burns was actually "boweling" instead of
    "bowling" -- not that it really mattered in the end.  I was a bit
    disappointed that we couldn't see what happened to Skinner's mom's
    dress.  Still, Doris Grau couldn't have been honored in any better
    way.  Grade: A-

Ricardo Lafaurie: All I can say is Burns was "too nice!"  Any other
    feelings are blindsided by the death of Doris Grau, so I'm not
    pouting.  I'm mourning.

Bob Yantosca: A somewhat mediocre episode with a couple of good gags.  I
    was ROTFL when the etherized Burns thought that Homer was Poppin'
    Fresh, and when Chalmers is just about to give Skinner a good report
    but has something bad happen to him at the last minute.  But the
    rest of the show seemed a bit contrived.  Grade: B-.

Rick Diamant: Well, that was less than their best.  Still, it had one of
    the funniest Simpsons lines of all time, which automatically bumps
    it up one full grade, up to a B. "So, who's ready to kick some
    Christian keister?"

Adam Lipkin: All in all not a bad episode.  The uniform subplot didn't
    really go anywhere.  The bowling plot was believable.  You gotta
    love Burns' unpredictable mood swings.  A bunch of great lines, like
    "That's leprosy for you," from CMB.  A B grade from me for this one.

Chris Courtois: This was a middle-of-the-road so-so episode.  They've
    done worse, but they've also done better.  Some good laughs, some
    really good meta-humor involving the competing teams.  The school
    uniform subplot didn't really go anywhere.  A perfectly average C.

Ondre Lombard: Overall grade: C+.  The plot was interesting, but some of
    the jokes were flat.  The only unpredictable thing about this
    episode was how the uniform idea was ruined.  Homer at times was a
    little too stupid, but tolerable.  Great characterization of Mr.
    Burns however.

Yours truly: I suddenly understood the episode when I saw the first
    credit: David Mirkin, Executive Producer.  A good Mirkin-esque
    episode with lots of cheap laughs, but no real emphasis on plot
    direction or realism.  For a Mirkin-style episode, an A-; compared
    to other episodes, C.

Comments and other observations

George Bush's opinion of this episode

Dean Scungio quotes George Bush in the 5-Feb-96 issue of "US News and
    World Report" regarding this episode: "The only thing missing was
    Oliver Stone as the director."

"Mad" magazine jokes

Haynes Lee says the following:

    - "There was an `Almighty Dollar' fold-in.  I don't recall which
      issue though.
    - `Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions' was written Al Jaffe who also
      did the fold-ins.
    - The cartoon opposite fold in is a Spy versus Spy.
    - I never recalled Mad magazine having iron-on inserts.  MAD
      specials either have posters, stickers, plastic records, or stamps
      (and once a voodoo doll).
    - MAD magazine has four `specials' a year, but it seems like
    - Spiro Agnew was Richard Nixon's Vice President who was the only
      politician scummier than Nixon himself."

"Spanish Flea"

While Martin and Lisa are modeling the new uniforms, Doris talks over a
    record playing "Spanish Flea".  Tony Hill writes, "`Spanish Flea' by
    Julius Wechter was a hit in 1965 for Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass
    on their album `Going Places.'"

Dr. Haing S. Ngor

Dave Kathman says, "Dr. Haing S. Ngor is a real doctor, a refugee from
    Cambodia who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in his first
    movie role, `The Killing Fields', in 1984.  He's since appeared in
    some other things, such as Oliver Stone's `Heaven and Earth', but
    nothing too major."

"Release the hounds!"

Haynes Lee enumerates the episodes where hounds have been released:

    - [7G04] Burns warns company picnic to clear out because the hounds
      are going to released in ten minutes.
    - [7F10] Burns asks Smithers to release hounds on Homer and Marge
      when he decides to reject their settlement.
    - [7F07] Burns releases hounds on Bart when he tries to steal pie
      from windowsill.
    - [8F17] Burns releases hounds on Flanders when he solicits him
      about recycling.
    - [8F17] Burns releases hounds on Bart when Smithers reports a sweet
      little boy is ringing the doorbell.
    - [2F03] Evil Flanders releases hounds on Homer when he refuses to
      get a lobotomy.  {cg}
    - [3F10] Homer gets mauled by the hounds when he takes back the
      bowling trophy Burns kept for himself.

"In Loving Memory of Doris Grau"

Don Del Grande notes that Doris Grau "died of respiratory failure on
    December 30 at age 71 For those of you who don't know, Doris was the
    voice of Lunch Lady Doris, as well as Doris the hairdresser on `The
    Critic'.  Originally, she was the `script girl supervisor' on a
    number of series, including `The Tracey Ullman Show' (she also made
    a couple of appearances in sketches) and the first few seasons of
    `The Simpsons'.
    In the words of Doris the Hairdresser (from `The Critic'): `I know a
    few tricks about hair and teeth.  Always wear hair.  Always wear

Where is Springfield?

Tony Hill says Springfield "appears to be in one of the states where
    dress codes are legal.  The states have split about 50-50 (er,
    25-25) on this issue as the Supreme Court has never addressed the
    question.  I used to have a list of which states are which."

Quotes and Scene Summary

[Syndication cuts are marked in curly braces "{}" and are courtesy of
Frederic Briere.]

Bart and Milhouse hang out in the comic store, looking at the new wares.

    Bart: My God: the Mad Magazine Special Edition!  They only put out
          seventeen of these a year!  [grabs it]
Milhouse: Boy, they're really socking it to that Spiro Agnew guy.  He
          must work there or something.
    Bart: Let's do the Fold-In.
Milhouse: OK.
           [the Fold-In will clearly become a green dollar sign]
           [reading] "What higher power do TV evangelists worship?"
    Bart: I'll say God.
Milhouse: I'll say Jesus.
           [they fold it in]
    Both: "The Almighty Dollar"?!
   Owner: You fold it, you bought it.
-- The penalty for defacing the Mad Fold-In, "Team Homer"

At home, Homer delights in reading the magazine himself.

Homer: Ooh, "Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions"!  I'm great at these.
       Ask me if something smells funny in here, Boy.
 Bart: Does something smell funny in here?
Homer: I don't think so...stupid!  [laughs to self]
Marge: [walking in] Homey, you want pork chops?
Homer: No, I want roast beef, you clod!  [laughs some more]
 Bart: Look at this: "Special Insert: Iron-On Mad-Ness!"
        [reads iron-ons] "Ban the Bath"..."Don't Trust Anyone Over
       Ten"..."Sock It To Me!"  [laughs to self]
Marge: Hmm.  Those magazines create a dangerous amount of laughter.
Homer: [trying to do Fold-In] "The Al-ighty -ollar?"  [laughs] Oh, I get
-- The bastion of magazine humor, "Team Homer"

Later, at Moe's, Homer is the only customer.

   Moe: Gee, business stinks tonight.  Where's Barney, Lenny, and Carl?
 Homer: Aw, they never come around any more now that they've got their
   Moe: [sighs] Might as well close the dump.
         [outside, Quimby leads a bunch of people toward the bar]
Quimby: I am going to drink you under the table.
   Man: No, I am going to drink _you_ under the --
         [the "Moe's" lighted sign turns off]
         [the crowd sighs and turns back]
 Homer: [yawns] Well, you're closing, it's getting late, my kids are
        probably wondering where their dad is...
         [grabs Moe, implores] There's got to be some other place we can
        go.  Thank, Moe, think!
-- Staying away from the loving wife and children, "Team Homer"

The other place is the bowling alley.  Homer and Moe ask the kid on duty
if they can get a lane.

  Kid: Sorry, it's league night.  I couldn't give a lane to my own
Doris: [walking by] I have no son.  [walks off]
-- Even if she disowns me, "Team Homer"

  Moe: Man!  You go through life, you try to be nice to people, you
       struggle to resist the urge to punch in the face, and for what?
       For some pimply little _puke_ to treat like dirt unless you're on
       a _team_.  Well, I'm better than dirt -- well, most kinds of
       dirt.  I mean, not that fancy store-bought dirt.  That stuff's
       loaded with nutrients.  I -- I can't compete with that stuff.
  Apu: That I cannot bowl wreaks havoc with my self-esteem as well, but
       who am I to complain?
Homer: Well, I'm tired of being a wannabe league bowler.  I wanna be a
       league bowler!
-- The grand aspiration, "Team Homer"

A lightbulb turns on over Homer's head.

Homer: Hey!  We could be a team...
        [at the counter] Excuse me, but my _team_ is ready to bowl.
  Kid: You're short one person.
Homer: [seeing Otto] Uh, that longhaired freak's bowled with us for
 Otto: [at a prize machine] Ooh, I don't care if it takes me all night:
       I'm going to get me that lobster harmonica.  Come on, lobstey --!
        [it drops of the claws]
  Kid: OK.  Then I just need your $500 registration fee.
Homer: $500?!  [quickly subdued] Oh, no problem.  Will you take an out-
       of-state two party bad check?
-- Not on his mother's grave, "Team Homer"

Getting a negative answer from the kid, Homer turns to the obvious place
for the registration fee.

Marge: No, I will _not_ pay you $500 for sex!
Homer: Aw, come on, Marge!  You're getting something in return, and I'm
       getting a bowling team.  It's win-win!
Marge: It's sick!  And I don't have that kind of money to spend on sex.
       Maybe you could get someone with money to sponsor your team.
Homer: [scoffs] Burns never gives money to anybody.  Just last week I
       asked him for $1,500.
Marge: For what?
Homer: Oh, I gotta get the third degree from you too?
-- Beset on all sides, "Team Homer"

In class, Mrs. Krabappel starts to tell the class about their homework

    Edna: Tonight's homework assignment is --
    Bart: [exaggerated] Oh, man: is it hot in here.  I'd better take off
          my sweater.
    Edna: [reading his T-shirt] "Down...with...[gasps] homework"?!
           [the class starts laughing]
          Don't look at it, children.  [she stands in front of him]
Milhouse: His shirt makes a good point.
  Nelson: I'm with the shirt: homework rots.
Everyone: Down with homework!  Down with homework!
           [they throw their books out the windows]
           [some kids try to suffocate Edna with chalk dust]
           [Ralph sits on the floor, eating paste]
           [some boys tip Edna's desk over, setting it alight]
-- How riots are born, "Team Homer"

Superindendent Chalmers walks down a hall with Skinner.

 Skinner: As I was saying, my yearly evaluation couldn't have come at a
          better time.
Chalmers: Well, Seymour, I must say for once, I am impressed.  In fact,
          I am going to give this school a perfect ten.
           [lifts clipboard] I'll just write the zero first...now, a
          vertical line to indicate the one --
Everyone: [running out] Down with homework!
           [Chalmers gets trampled to the ground]
Chalmers: Skinner!  Why are children walking on my head?
           [Skinner fishes Bart out of the stampede]
-- The answer: this ten-year-old, "Team Homer"

Skinner takes Bart into his office.

Skinner: So: we meet again, Mad Magazine.
   Bart: How do you know it's from Mad?
Skinner: [walking to his window] The year was 1968.  We were on recon in
         a steaming Mekong delta.  An overheated private removed his
         flak jacket, revealing a T-shirt with an iron-on sporting the
         Mad slogan "Up With Mini-Skirts".
         Well, we all had a good laugh, even though I didn't quite
         understand it.  But our momentary lapse of concentration
         allowed Charlie to get the drop on us.
         I spent the next three years in a POW camp, forced to subsist
         on a thin stew of fish, vegetables, prawns, coconut milk, and
         four kinds of rice.  I came close to madness trying to find it
         here in the States, but they just can't get the spices right --
   Bart: Uh, my punishment?
Skinner: Hmm?  Oh, I'm going to have to think about that.  Meanwhile,
         wear this home.
          [puts a seat pillow over Bart's torso and zips it up]
-- The gourmet prison camps of the east, "Team Homer"

Smithers gives Mr. Burns a manicure in his office.

   Burns: [groaning] Ohh!  I need some more ether.  I can still feel the
          movement of the emory board.
Smithers: [checks bottle] We're fresh out, Sir.  I'll get some more.
   Burns: Leave the rag.
           [sniffs it] Mmm...
           [Smithers walks out; Homer sneaks in]
   Homer: Uh...excuse me, Mr. Burns?
   Burns: [gasps] Poppin' Fresh!  You glutinous little doughboy.
           [Homer morphs into Poppin' Fresh in Burns' mind]
           [chuckles] There's something I've wanted to do to you for
           [starts poking his stomach; Homer laughs]
   Homer: [getting his eyes poked at] Ow!  Heh, Mr. Burns?  I, er, was
          wondering if you'd like to sponsor my bowling team...for...
   Burns: Ho ho, why, certainly, Poppin' Fresh!  I owe my robust
          physique to your tubes of triple-bleached goo.
   Homer: Woo hoo!  [runs out] Hey, everybody: if you want to ask Burns
          for a favor, now's the time!  He's doped up, or dying, or
    Hans: [running in] Uh, excuse me: I'd like to request $17 for a
          push-broom rebristling.  [shows broom with no bristles on it]
   Burns: Why, it's that delightful TV leprechaun.  I'm going to get
          your Lucky Charms.  [starts a drill]
    Hans: Oh, no: my brains.
-- They're magically...dendrite-icious?, "Team Homer"

[End of Act One.  Time: 6:00]

On the backs of each of Otto's, Apu's and Moe's T-shirt, Homer writes
"Pin Pals" with a black marker.

Krusty: [looking over] Hey, nice quote uniforms, endquote.
  Kent: [pretending] This just in, a new addition to our worst-dressed
        list: those guys!  [his team laughs]
   Apu: Oh, forget this.  I am far too fragile to withstand an evening
        of barbs like that.
 Homer: Aw, come on: if we quit now, we'll _never_ know how badly
        they're going to beat us!
   Moe: Yeah, you're right.  That's the kind of thing that would haunt
-- Moe, arbiter of bad dreams, "Team Homer"

The Bumblebee Man rolls a strike as his team cheers.  "Si!" he exclaims.

Pedro: Buenas noches, senoritas!
  Moe: What'd he say?  What'd he say?  Was that about me?
-- Only about your feminine side, "Team Homer"

Otto's up for the Pin Pals next.  He tries to talk himself out of
choking, and bowls...only to leave himself with a 7-10 split.  "Oh, man!
I _knew_ I was going to choke."  Moe observes, "Well, that's a funny
looking strike."

Homer: Come on, guys!  Let's be the team that supports each other.
        [chanting] You can do it, Otto!  You can do it, Otto!
       Help each other out: that'll be our motto!
        [Apu and Moe join in] You can do it, Otto!  You can do it, Otto!
  Apu: Make this spare; I'll give you free gelato!
  Moe: Then back to my place, where I will get you blotto!
Homer: Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto.
  All: You can do it, Otto!  You can do it --
 Otto: Uh, guys?  I made the spare.  We won!
  All: [pause] Yay!
-- The power of teamwork, "Team Homer"

They all cheer, shake up their beers, and spray each other.  The lane
manager Uncle Al comes up to them and informs them, "Those beers are $5
apiece."  They stop, squeeze the beer our of their shirts and hair back
into the bottles, recap them, and hand them back.

Homer recounts the victory to Marge in bed that night.

Homer: Let me set the scene for you, Marge.
Marge: All right.
Homer: It's a 7-10 split.
Marge: Uh huh?
Homer: The hardest shot in bowling.  It was all up to me --
Marge: Oh!
Homer: -- so I got up all my courage.  Right away, my lips started to
       move, and I came up with the chant that won the match!
Marge: Who knocked down the pins?
Homer: [annoyed] I don't know.  You know, some guy, er...Otto, I guess.
Marge: Good for him!
Homer: Yes, but -- Marge, you're not -- you're missing the point!  The
       individual doesn't matter.  It was a team effort, and I was the
       one who came up with the whole team idea...me!
Marge: I can't believe Otto picked up a 7-10 split -- he's phenomenal!
Homer: But --
Marge: Wow!
-- Marge, conoisseur of true bowling acumen, "Team Homer"

Skinner holds an assembly in the school auditorium.

 Skinner: Several days ago, a violent riot erupted incited by an
          inflammatory T-shirt slogan.  No, no, now don't try to
          remember what that slogan was!  To ensure that this frenzied
          dance of destruction is never repeated, I have decided
          starting Monday, all students will be required to wear
Everyone: [gasps] Uniforms?!
           [Bart winces and ducks as paper and a shoe are thrown at him]
           [Lunch Lady Doris puts "Spanish Flea" on]
   Doris: Say hello to our little genius, Martin, who looks even smarter
          in this vest and short-pant combination from Mr. Boy of Main
          Or, how about little Lisa Simpson?  She'll have no reason to
          play the blues in this snappy ensemble topped of with a saucy
          French beret that seems to scream, [French accent] "Silence!"
           [people throw paper and a shoe at her]
          {[a guy walks in the back door with boxes on a trolley]}
 Skinner: {All right, pick your size: extra small or extra large.  We've
          got both.  No pushing, now!  I've -- what?
           [Doris whispers in his ear] Oh.  I've just been informed
          we've run out of extra large.}
-- Springfield Elementary tries to go Catholic, "Team Homer"

At the bowling lane, Homer and his teammates continue their chant thing.

All but Moe: Go, Moe!  Go, Moe!
             Don't make Homer shout out "D'oh"!
              [Moe rolls a strike]
        All: Yay!
-- For want of scansion, the match was won, "Team Homer"

{Patty and Selma, on the losing team, sigh.  Someone moves the Pin Pals'
card from 4th to 3rd on the league standings chart.}

{Against Wiggum's team, Apu rolls a strike to the cheers of his

Wiggum: {All right, Snake: make us proud.
         [Lou unlocks his leg irons]}
 Snake: {[winding up] One, two, three!
         [runs quickly] Four five six seven eight nine ten.
         [pops head out door] Bye!  [slams door]}
Wiggum: {Uh...we forfeit.
         [the Pin Pals laugh and cheer]}
-- Ten small steps to freedom, "Team Homer"

{The Pin Pals move from third to second.}  They eye the trophy in the
display case.

Homer: There it is, boys: the championship trophy.
  Apu: We will never possess it.  The Holy Rollers have won it five
       years in a row.
        [the Rollers (Ned, Maude, and the Lovejoys) look piously at the
       heavens as a light shines on them]
  Moe: Ehh, they think they're so high and mighty just because they
       never got caught driving without pants.
        [Ned bowls, and one pin stays up]
Homer: [laughs] God-boy couldn't get a strike!  [laughs more]
  Ned: [looking up to God] It's me, Ned.
        [the pin falls; Homer gets zapped with lightning from the ball
-- Mysterious ways, "Team Homer"

Bart and Lisa walk into the kitchen dressed in their uniforms.

     Bart: [whining] Mom, my slingshot doesn't fit in these pockets.
           And these shorts leave nothing to the imagination.  These
           uniforms suck!
    Marge: Bart!  Where do you pick up words like that?
    Homer: [on phone] Yeah, Moe, that team sure did suck last night.
           They just plain sucked!  I've seen teams suck before, but
           they were the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.
    Marge: Homer!  Watch your mouth!
    Homer: Aw, I gotta go.  My damn weiner kids are listening.  [hangs
     Lisa: We are not weiners!
    Homer: Then what are you dressed like that for?
Bart+Lisa: They made us.
    Homer: "Oh, they made us."  That's loser-talk!  You gotta start
           acting more like me and my team, the future champions of the
           world.  Nothing's going to stop us now!
    Burns: {[in his office] Stop everything!}
-- Except for a little thing I like to call Mr. Monty, "Team Homer"

   Burns: {I don't remember writing a check for bowling.}
Smithers: {Uh, Sir, that's a check for your _boweling_.}
   Burns: {Oh, yes.  That's very important.}
Smithers: {Yes, Sir.  Remember that month you didn't do it?}
   Burns: {Yes...that was unpleasant for all concerned.  Anyway, back to
          the checks.}
          Stop everything!  I don't remember writing a check for
Smithers: Hmm...the memo says, "To my pal, Poppin' Fresh."
   Burns: Ah yes, that greedy, grasping, glob of chemicals.
Smithers: Probably one of your ether-induced hallucinations, Sir.  I'll
          check the employee file to see who could pull off such an
           [pushes a remote; a TV turns on]
          Hmm.  Now, it was either Pops Freshenmeyer --
           [on the screen, Pops and Poppin' are overlaid] -- or Homer
           [Homer and Poppin' are overlaid; "Perfect match" flashes]
   Burns: Homer Simpson, eh?  Let's shut down this bowling scam right
-- Burns remembers who it is for once, "Team Homer"

At the bowling lanes, the Pin Pals are on another roll...

All but Homer: Come on, Homer!  Come on, Homer!
               Pretend this is baseball and hit us a homer!
                [Homer gets a strike; they cheer]
        Homer: By the way, guys: rhyming "Homer" with "homer"?  [kisses
        Burns: [walking in] Look at them, Smithers, enjoying their
     Smithers: [dramatic] I have a much uglier word for it, Sir:
                [Homer sees them and tosses his ball away; someone
        Burns: [menacing] Listen here...I want to join your team.
        Homer: You want to join my _what_?
     Smithers: You want to _what_ his team?
        Burns: I've had one of my unpredictable changes of heart.
               Seeing these fine young athletes, reveling in the
               humiliation of a vanquished foe...mmm, I haven't felt
               this energized since my last, er, boweling.
-- Complete with Smeckler's Powder, "Team Homer"

 Otto: Oh, man!  He'll blow our winning streak.
  Moe: Yeah.  Call this an unfair generalization if you must, but old
       people are no good at everything.
Homer: Look, guys, it's not that simple: he's my boss.  I'll tell you
       what: I'll give him a shot, and if he stinks, it'll be easier to
       tell him no.
        [Burns can barely lift the ball, let alone roll it]
        [he collapses with exhaustion on the lane]
        [Smithers runs down and kicks the pins over]
Homer: Welcome aboard!  [sheepish] It wasn't any easier.
-- Burns, athlete of yesteryear, "Team Homer"

[End of Act Two.  Time: 13:15]

A bell rings at school; the students file past in lockstep.

Skinner: Ah, these uniforms are godsend.  Horseplay is down 40%,
         youthful exuberance has been cut in half, high spirits are at
         an all-time low.
  Doris: They've even begun blinking in unison.
          [the students blink]
Skinner: I love that sound!
-- All wet and moist, like, "Team Homer"

  Edna: Now, children, while you're having quiet time, I'm going to make
        sure my desk is exactly parallel to the rear wall.
         [bends over her desk with her butt toward the class]
  Bart: [holding his slingshot] Oh.  There's something I used to do in
        this situation, but...can't...remember!
Nelson: Ha...ho?
-- The deprogramming begins, "Team Homer"

At the bowling alley, it's Otto that's been kicked off the team.

      Otto: Whoa.  I can't believe I got booted off the team for Mr.
            Businessman.  Pfft!  I bet I'll get respect once I get that
            Harvard diploma.  [turns to prize machine]
             [Burns struggles with a ball; he pushes it into the gutter]
     Burns: Look at that!  All the way to the end with only one push.
       Moe: Aw, that's the third game in a row he cost us, Homer!
             [the Stereo Types team huddles, the turns around]
     Luigi: Mama mia!
     Willy: Hoot, man!
    Cletus: Yeehaw!
McAllister: Arr, me mateys: arr.
       Apu: Whoa.  They _begged_ me to join their team -- begged me!
-- Dame Fortune frowns, "Team Homer"


Burns: Well, we certainly got walloped tonight, eh, fellas?  [laughs]
Homer: Yeah, ha ha --
        [gets kicked under the table]
       Well, Mr. -- ouch!  Mr. Burns, next week is the big championship
       game, and --
Burns: Ah, yes, that silly championship.  [laughs] The only ship worth a
       damn is friendship.
        [makes a paper boat] Look, here comes the friend ship, sailing
       your way!
        [puts it on Homer's beer; it sinks]
       Oh, here: let me get that, friend.  [pulls it out]
       Whoops.  Lost a nail.  Well, that's leprosy for you.
-- Uh, cheers, "Team Homer"

At school, it's recess time.  Three uniformed children bounce a ball in
unison.  Six children swing slowly in unison on a swingset.

    Todd: [without enthusiasm] You're "it".  [touches Lisa]
    Lisa: [to Milhouse] Now you are the one who is "it".
Milhouse: [looking down] Understood.
Chalmers: Well, I've got to hand it to you, Seymour: these drab student
          coverings have created the perfect distraction-free
          environment, thus preparing the children for permanent
          positions in tomorrow's mills and processing facilities.  Hah!
          Best of all, with less than a minute to go before I leave,
          absolutely nothing has gone wrong --
           [it thunders; rain starts to fall]
 Skinner: We -- well, it is starting to rain, but I can hardly be blamed
          for that, can I?
           [Chalmers begins laughing; Seymour joins in]
Chalmers: Yes, very good.
-- Tag, uniform style, "Team Homer"

The grey dye starts to wash out of the children's uniforms, leaving
almost tie-dye colors in its place.

    Bart: Wow!  Look at all the colors, man!
    Lisa: Red, green, yellow, orange!  I remember all of these.
Milhouse: I'm freaking out!
   Jimbo: Hey: something's coming back to me.  Down with homework!
  Martin: [dancing, shirtless] And down with uniforms!  Yay!
           [other children cheer and riot]
Chalmers: [getting hit on the head with balls, etc.]  Ow.  Ow.  Ow!  Ow.
          Skinner!  Why aren't these uniforms colorfast?!
 Skinner: I don't understand it.  I got them at the same place I buy
          Mother's dresses, and -- Good Lord!  Mother's in the park!
Chalmers: Now this, I gotta see!  [walks off]
-- For every action..., "Team Homer"

Homer complains to Marge about his new team member.

Homer: Oh, Marge, we were so close to winning the championship.  Now,
       thanks to Burns, it's never going to happen.  And I spend so much
       time building that trophy case.
        [shot of pieces of wood with an Oscar atop them]
Marge: Homer, maybe Mr. Burns will bowl a great game, and you will win
       your championship!
Homer: So you're saying...we're definitely going to win?  Woo hoo!
        [grabs Oscar] I won't need _this_ any more!
        [tries flushing it; tries again and again and again]
       Marge, someone broke the toilet!
-- Oscar vs. bowling trophy, "Team Homer"

At the bowling lanes, Homer, Moe, and Apu prepare their balls.  The Holy
Rollers walk in in monk's garb, their hoods drawn.  They lower their
hoods and look to the heavens as light bathes them.

  Moe: Don't worry about nothing, Homer.  I have a feeling that Mr.
       Burns is going to have a little accident that might keep him from
       bowling with us tonight, heh heh heh.
Burns: [walking in, leaning on Smithers] Smithers, I'm afraid I won't be
       able to play tonight.  My old gimpy knee has gone akimbo again.
  Moe: [masked, with a cane] Take that!
        [bashes Burns on the leg with a cane, runs off]
Burns: Ooh!  Smithers...that precision assault popped it back into
       place.  Thank you, masked stranger!
-- Tonya Harding's bodyguard, he ain't, "Team Homer"

  Moe: D'oh, he's going to ruin everything!  All right, that's it,
       Homer: either Burns goes, or Moe goes.
  Apu: Yes, I am afraid that I am going to have to make a similar threat
       with my name in place of Moe's name.
Burns: So, who's ready to kick some Christian keister?
Homer: Oh, uh...Mr. Burns?  As team captain, it's my duty to inform you
       that --
Burns: Oh, I almost forgot.  I brought you all a little something.
        [pulls out a professionally-designed Pin Pals T-shirt]
  Moe: Aw, would you look at that?  "Pin Pals".
  Apu: At last, I finally have a garment fine enough to be married in.
Burns: I've always been wealthy, but this is the first time I ever
Homer: [sobs] Aw.
Burns: Now, Homer, you were about to say something to me.
Homer: [pause] You're off the team.
Burns: I -- what?
  Moe: [awkward laugh] He's just ribbing you, Monty.
        [Apu agrees; they all laugh]
-- How quickly they forget, "Team Homer"

Mr. Burns tosses a ball weakly down the lane while Ned, Maude, Helen,
and Timothy all bowl strikes.  "Yay!" cheers Ned.  "Hallelujah," intones
Timothy.  Burns' ball rolls into the gutter as his team groans.

From behind the pins, we see them all scatter as Apu stands at the other
end.  The nest shot shows Moe standing at the other end.  The next shot
shows Burns standing at the other end.  He stands aside and says, "Nice
one, Homer."  Homer thanks him.

Homer rolls another strike.  Apu notes, "OK, the Holy Rollers are ahead
by one pin and we only have one bowler left: Mr. Burns."  Mr. Burns
walks to get a ball and his fingers flap in the wind from the ball
return.  His team sighs as he winds up and delivers a weak ball that
rolls straight into the gutter.  "Well, next time, a few steps more
toward center, don't you think?" he asks jovially.  "Goodbye, trophy,"
Homer says to the gleaming trophy.

Burns' second shot teeters on the edge of the gutter.  Otto, at the game
machine, has latched onto a screw without realizing it.  "Whoa, whatever
I got a hold of, it's _big_!"  The ball rolls on the edge and glances
off two pins, making them wobble.  Otto, with a final grunt, dislodges
the screw, pulling the leg of the machine and toppling it.  The
vibration causes the two pins to fall.  "Yes!" cheer Burns' teammates.
"Excellent," says Burns.  Otto looks down at the prizes, grabs the
lobster harmonica, and cries, "Yes!"

Homer: Woo hoo!  We won!  We won!
        [Homer, Apu, and Moe dance while the kid gets the trophy from
       the case]
        [Homer holds it, but Burns takes it]
Burns: You mean, _I_ won.
  Apu: But we were a team, Sir.
Burns: Oh, I'm afraid I've had one of my trademark changes of heart.
       You see, teamwork will only take you so far.  Then, the truly
       evolved person makes that extra grab for personal glory.  Now, I
       must discard my teammates, much like the boxer must shed roll
       after roll of sweaty, useless, disgusting flab before he can win
       the title.  Ta!
        [walks off with Smithers]
Homer: I guess some people never change.  Or, they quickly change and
       then quickly change back.
  Moe: You know what?  We don't need him, or his trophy!  We got each
       other, huh?
        [general murmurs of agreement]
-- The only ship worth a damn, "Team Homer"

Homer's three former teammates stand outside the gates of Burns'
compound and cheer Homer on.  "Go, Homer!  You're our man.  If you can't
do it, no one can!"  Homer smashes a window at Burns' place and grabs
the trophy, setting off the alarm and releasing the hounds.  He makes a
dash for the gate, but doesn't make it over in time.  The dogs tear him
to shreds as Otto remarks, "Well, I guess no one can."  Moe cries, "Run
before they're through feeding!"  They do so as Homer continues to be
torn apart.

[End of Act Three.  Time: 21:17]


   {fb}  Frederic Briere
   {ddg} Don Del Grande
   {cg}  Charles Gregory
   {dh}  Dave Hall
   {dh2} Dominik Halas
   {th}  Tony Hill
   {jl}  Jose Lafaurie
   {rl}  Ricardo Lafaurie
   {hl}  Haynes Lee
   {jm}  John Murray
   {mr}  Mark Richey
   {bjr} Benjamin Robinson
   {rt}  Ricardo Thompson
   {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.)