Black Widower

Black Widower
                                         Story by Thomas Chastain and Sam Simon
                                                          Teleplay by Jon Vitti
                                                    Directed by David Silverman

TV Guide synopsis

Selma's on cloud nine, but Bart fears a cloudburst when his aunt becomes
engaged to Sideshow Bob (Kelsey Grammer), her prison pen pal paroled for
pinning a crime on Krusty.

Title sequence

Blackboard :- `Funny noises are not funny'.
              `Funny noises are not' at cutoff.

Lisa's solo:- bright.

Driveway   :- Homer says `D'oh!' when Lisa scoots past.
              Homer says `Waugh!' when the car closes in on him.

Couch      :- Two thieves (complete with striped shirts and masks)
              are carting the couch away.  The family leap onto the
              couch, but the thieves dump OFF onto the floor and
              continue on their way.
              Recycled from [8[FG]08].

Didja notice...

        Special Guest Voice
            Kelsey Grammer (Sideshow Bob)

    ... Sideshow Bob lost all the muscles he'd been building up in [8F03]? {jd}
    ... the inmates passing around Sideshow Bob's lip balm?
    ... `Snake' is the man who held up the Kwik-E-Mart in [8[FG]15]?
    ... the three-eyed fish in the SNPP runoff lake? {kw}
    ... Snowball II clawing the couch during the Telethon?
    ... Wendell is one of Krusty's Kids?
    ... Sideshow Bob sheds a tear at Krusty's telethon when he says, ``This
        guy is a national treasure!''  {ajr, kw}
    ... Lisa dances with Grampa by standing on his feet?
    ... the red ``REC'' dot does <not> blink while Marge films Krusty?
    ... Lisa reads a book while everyone else watches the videotape?
    ... the mirror over the honeymoon bed?
    ... Sideshow Bob addressed Selma as `Usted' instead of `tu'?
        Rather formal for a husband addressing his wife... {jf2}
    ... Homer's left front fender is still dented?
    ... Sideshow Bob's feet haven't gotten any smaller... {trb}


Mark Eckenwiler {me}:  This was a well-plotted piece of non-claptrap that never
made me want to retch even once.

Karl Wagenfuehr {kw}:  Yes!  Great episode!

Scott Amspoker {sa}:  Agreed.

Jamie Ide {ji}:  Another good one!

Steve VanDevender {sv}:  A good solid episode, not an all-time classic,
but quite well-written.

David Hyatt {dh2}:  Easily one of the best episodes this season.

Jym Dyer {jd}:  A Big Thumbs Up!!!

Alan J Rosenthal {ajr}:  I'll have to watch it at least once more before I
give a review.  [Okay, we're waiting. --rjc]

Andrew Tannenbaum {trb}:  This episode was great, not for the story line,
but because of the steady barrage of hilarious dialogue.

Ron Carter {rc}:  Not as good as `Colonel Homer' but still solid Simpson...
I give it 4 out of 5 Barts...

Yours Truly {rjc}:  Another strong showing.  I still say that choosing Kelsey
Grammer was truly inspired casting.

Movie (and other) References

  + Dinosaurs
        - The family watch the show
    The Elephant Man
        - Lisa's imagination
    Cool Hand Luke
        - picking up garbage
        - the shot of the chief guard's reflective sunglasses
        - the guard's cane tapping his leg {abw}
  + Les Miserables (the musical, not the novel)
        - Jean Valjean was prisoner number 24601, the same as Bob's. {jdb}
    Normal Rockwell painting
        - Thanksgiving dinner
    The Wizard of Oz
        - ``Snake, I'm going to miss you most of all.''
    Jerry Lewis' Telethon for Muscular Dystrophy (and Jerry's Kids)
        - Krusty's telethon for motion sickness
    Gone With the Wind
        - ``Fiddle-dee-dee.  Tomorrow's another day.''
        - Sideshow Bob turns a chair, expecting to find a corpse, but
          instead finds Bart.  (In the movie, Vera Miles turns a chair,
          expecting to find Mrs. Bates, but instead finds a corpse.)
        - Sideshow Bob is so startled, he hits a swinging light bulb.
        - A brief violin sweep shortly thereafter.
    Assorted literature (by Sideshow Bob, of course)
        - ``My best-laid plans have gang agley.''
          (The best-laid plans of mice and men gang oft agley. -- Robert Burns)
        - ``How did you untangle my web?''
          (Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.)
  + Batman (television)
        - The Simpson-mobile's burst of flame
        - The sign showing the distance to Shelbyville (Gotham City) {jdb}
    Mission: Impossible
        - Music hinted at as Bart saves Selma
    The Maltese Falcon
        - Mary Astor takes the fall
          (the sliding metal bars of the elevator doors)
    Scooby Doo
        - Retrospective explanation of the crime
        - The incredibly feeble joke that everyone laughs at
    Black Widow {jr2}
        - Nobody believes the hero's knowledge of the villain
        - Marrying for money, then murdering
        - The final murder done for revenge
        - Villain gets overconfident and spills the beans

Freeze Frame Fun


  ``Tar Pits High'' pennant

License plates

   Krusty's Limo:  KRUSTY9
   Sideshow Bob's creations:
     IH8 BART (also the license plate on the honeymoon-mobile)

  Note that license plate consists of gold lettering on a blue field.
  And the state inscribed along the top?  ``SPRINGFIELD''

Selma's real letter

Bucky Whaley @{bw} notes that the voice-over of Selma's letter differs
from the letter itself.  Here's what the letter <really> says:

	    Dear No. 24601,
		    I need a man and
	    cannot find one among th
	    law abiding.

		   I'm an unfireable

Since Selma is a government employee, she may very well be unfireable.

Krusty The Clown Telethon for Motion Sickness

   The tote board was for $385,382.35; a minute later (after
   Krusty hinted that his involvement wasn't legit!) it was
   $311,011.11. (`Where's the $74,371.24, Krustala?') {rc}

Wedding guests

   Maggie (flower girl)
   Marge                \
   Patty                 \ all dressed in pink
   Mrs. Bouvier          /
   Lisa                 /
   Homer                   in a tunxedo sans jacket
   Bart                    blue blazer and matching shorts
   Grampa Simpson
   Moe and Barney
   Apu chats with Snake
   Princess Cashmere
   Chief Wiggum
   Rev. Lovejoy and Helen
   The black cop
   Bleeding Gums Murphy

Bart's attempts to explain the situation

   0.  ``When Aunt Selma lights up her cigarette at the end of MacGyver,
         she'll be blown to Kingdome Come!''
       ``Come again?''
   1.  Bart turns on the gas stove and lights it.
   2.  Homer reads ``Science Made Very Very Simple''
   3.  Bart draws a picture, captioned, ``BOOM''
   4.  Bart puts on a puppet show.

   And finally...

   5.  Bart tells Marge.

Animation and continuity goofs

When Lisa clutches Marge's dress when Sideshow Bob appears, the white thing
behind her is supposed to be Marge's gloved hand, but it isn't.

Even though Sideshow Bob was number 24601, his shirt was numbered 1211. {rc}

After Selma puckers up, Sideshow Bob's lips don't move when he says,
``Although kissing you...''

Patty's dress changes color from purple to pink during the reception.

Comments and other observations

The title

    The official title appears to be ``Black Widower'', but I find Brian
    Howard's preliminary title of `The Return of Sideshow Bob' much more
    satisfying.  The title may have originally been `The Return of
    Sideshow Bob', but got changed (perhaps to keep the identity of
    Selma's fiance a secret).


Previous episodes

    [7[FG]12] The episode is an obvious sequel
    [7[FG]11] The karaoke bar at the Happy Sumo
    [7[FG]15] Selma's continuing search for a man
    [8[FG]08] ``Hairy yellow drumstick''
    [8[FG]14] Selma's adoration of MacGyver
           Shuddering at the thought of rubbing Selma's feet
    [8[FG]15] Snake is the man who held up the Kwik-E-Mart.

    Note that in [7G12] it was Bart's faith that saved the day, whereas
    here, it was Bart's suspicion that solved the case.


    Can anyone identify Sideshow Bob's conjugal visit music?
    I can hum the melody but the title eludes me.

Krusty and Sideshow Bob's on-air reconciliation

    Ted Frank {thf} notes that the telethon was a reference to the Rat Pack,
    and the falling out between Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis.
    Gerson Koenig {gmk} adds the two were reconciled on the telethon by
    the ``Chairman of the Board'' himself (Frank Sinatra).


    Those pointed out by David Hyatt {dh2} are tagged with a `-'.
    Mr. Hyatt notes, ``The sexual references were <all over the
    place>, flying over the head of every 10-year-old in the country.

    * ``Just don't drop that thing in the shower, Bob!''
    - The conjugal visit trailers.
    - Krusty's aborted 12-inch penis joke.
    - Selma moaning with pleasure (until we learn that it's because Sideshow
      Bob is rubbing her feet).
    - ``I'm not sure how to put this...''  ``White!''
    - Only smoking after meals and... MacGyver.
    - The nasty camera angle from between Selma's legs.
    * ``Choked you like a chicken'' (masturbation reference)

Sideshow Bob's parting comments

Exactly who was being bashed by Sideshow Bob's comment about the Democrats
and the White House?  Possible interpretations:

    (0)  It's just a joke, man.
    (1)  A swipe at the Democrats for...
         (a) being soft on crime
         (b) being locked out of the White House for so long
    (2) A swipe at the Republicans for...
         (a) being paranoid about Democrats being soft on crime
         (b) believing the Willy Horton media blitz
         (c) all being in jail
    (3) Irony considering Bob's status as a conservative Republican

Sideshow Bob's motive

Sideshow Bob already knew that Selma had lots of money.  (``I told you, I
got money.'')  Note also the transparent way he bemoans his lack of money,
just to get Selma to tell him another time about her financial security.

Sideshow Bob also knew that Selma was related to Bart, for he showed
no surprise at seeing Bart and even seemed to be expecting him.

I guess Sideshow Bob is living proof that our revolving door prison system
doesn't work after all.  Sideshow Bob went in on a felony and came out
prepared to murder.

The videotape controversy

How did the Simpsons get Selma's honeymoon videotape so quickly?  Well,
Shelbyville is so close by, Selma could've had it messengered back.
Perhaps to make Patty jealous.

There's also no reason to insist that things happened as quickly as they
seemed.  The drive to the hotel was at night, yet the videotape was made
during the day.  And MacGyver airs in the evening.  That leaves plenty of
time (perhaps even days) for things to develop.


Bob <missed> being kicked in the rear while in that over-crowded prison?! {kw}

Quotes and scene summary

 Homer and the kids sit on the couch in their Sunday best watching television.
   Dad Dinosaur:  Would you turn off that rock-and-rock music?
   Boy Dinosaur:  Hey, don't have a stegasaurus, man!
   -- Television on television, ``Black Widower''
   These talking dinosaurs are more real than most <real> families on TV.
   -- Lisa watches `Dinosaurs', ``Black Widower''
 Quick shot of a baby dinosaur bashing its papa with a frying pan.
 (Papa dinosaur yells, ``D'oh!  D'oh!'')
   It's like they saw our lives and put it right up on screen!
   -- Bart watches `Dinosaurs', ``Black Widower''
 Marge and Patty come in, and Patty wants to relate some disturbing
 information about Selma's new boyfriend before they arrive.
 Lisa imagines Selma with a man so disfigured he wears a hood.
 Homer imagines a man without a body, his head kept alive by elaborate
 machinery.  Bart imagines Selma with Homer.  (``Bleah!'')
   Patty: Aunt Selma has this crazy obsession about not dying alone.
          So in desperation, she joined this prison pen-pal program.
          Her new sweetie's a jailbird.
   Bart:  Coooool!  He can teach us how to kill a man with a lunchtray!
   -- ``Black Widower''
 Marge tries to explain that he's an <ex>-convict.  ``He's paid his debt to
 society.''  Patty wonders why Marge isn't using the good silverware.

 Selma arrives with her boyfriend.  It's... Sideshow Bob!  The kids scream
 in fear.  Sideshow Bob explains that Bart is the ``seamus in short pants''
 who put him in jail.

 At dinner...
   Homer: Gee, if some snot-nosed little kid sent <me> to prison,
          the first thing out, I'd find out where he lives, and...
          [vigorously mimes with his steak knife] tear him a new belly button!
          Ungh!  Ungh!  Lousy snitch!  Yaargh!
   Bart:  [laughs nervously, loosens his collar]
   -- Don't give him any ideas, dear.  ``Black Widower''
   Sideshow Bob:  Ah, Mr. Simpson, you're forgetting the first two noble
          truths of the Buddha.
   Homer: I am not!
   -- ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob tells his story.  He became a ``seething cauldron of rage and
 recrimination''.  While picking up litter along the highway (Krusty Burger
 wrappings, mostly) Sideshow Bob gets a faceful of a Krusty milkshake tossed
 out of Krusty's stretch limo.  His bitterness ruined his nomination for
 a Daytime Emmy.  Krusty is the awards presenter, and Sideshow Bob wins
 the award.  He accepts angrily from his prison cell...
   Just don't drop that thing in the shower, Bob!
   -- Krusty's bitter remarks towards an imprisoned Sideshow Bob upon the
      latter's winning of a Daytime Emmy, ``Black Widower''
 ... and has to be restrained and tranquilized.
   Now for the highlight of the evening, Best Film-to-Video Transfer.
   -- Krusty hosts the Daytime Emmys, ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob asks his audience, ``Do you know what prison is like for a
 lifelong conservative Republican?''  He continues his story.  In his
 prison cell, his stick of lip balm becomes community property.  His
 only joy is plotting revenge against Bart while making anti-Bart license
   Sideshow Bob:  [menacingly] Bart, if I wanted to kill you, I'd have choked
           you like a chicken the moment I walked in that door.
   Family: Gasp!
   Sideshow Bob:  [cheerily]  But then, what kind of guest would I have been?
   Family: [chuckle, except for Bart]
   -- On the other hand, if he'd brought a gift first... ``Black Widower''
 Back to the story...
   Sideshow Bob:  You can't take my Emmy!
   Prison Guard:  Hey, you know the rules.  Awards for excellence in entertainment
                  are contraband.  No Emmys, no Oscars, not even a Golden Globe.
   -- ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob's Emmy is added to a huge pile of other awards.

 Sideshow Bob receives a letter as part of the prison pen-pal program...
   Dear No 24601...
       I need a man, and I cannot find one among the law-abiding.
       I have a steady job and a lucrative hobby filing nuisance lawsuits.
   I share an apartment with my twin sister.  Enclosed is a photo of us on
   a tandem bike.  I forget which one I am.
   -- Selma's letter to Sideshow Bob, ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob composes his reply, which Selma reads in the tub.  Overcome,
 Selma slowly sinks, the tip of her cigarette being the last to submerge.
 Their love bloomed.  During a visitation, Sideshow Bob asks to kiss
 Selma through the glass.  She presses her cheek against the glass (the
 cheek growing to gargantuan proportions in the process).  ``Inspired
 by the love of a good woman, I resolved to be the best prisoner number
 24601 I could be.''  He plays the violin near the conjugal visit trailers.
 He bids farewell to his cellmates.  That concludes the story, and everyone
 sighs adorably.  Except for Bart.
   You're living proof that our revolving door prison system works.
   -- Lisa to Sideshow Bob, ``Black Widower''
 Marge notes that she's never seen Selma so happy, giggling like a schoolgirl.
 Selma giggles sickly.  Sideshow Bob makes a joke about his ex-con status,
 and all find it amusing.  Except for Bart.  Bart reminds everyone that
 Sideshow Bob framed Krusty, and Sideshow Bob thanks Bart for doing so,
 and thereby allowing him to meet Selma.
   Sideshow Bob: Selma, would you mind if I did something bold and shocking
          in front of your family?
   Selma: All right.  But no tongues. [removes her cigarette and puckers up]
   Sideshow Bob: Although kissing you would be like kissing some divine
          ashtray, that's not what I had in mind.
   -- ``Black Widower''
   Kissing you would be like kissing some divine ashtray.
   -- Sideshow Bob to his new love Selma, ``Black Widower''
   Sideshow Bob:  Selma, will you marry me?
   Bart:  Don't be a fool, Aunt Selma!  That man is scum!
   Selma: Then call me Mrs. Scum!
   -- ``Black Widower''
 [End of Act One.  Time: 6:24]

 While Sideshow Bob and Selma sing at the karaoke bar at the Happy Sumo,
 we are treated to a montage of their romance.  They take a paddleboat
 ride in the SNPP runoff lake.  They go for a walk along the beach.
 They dance ridiculously through a field of flowers.  Sideshow Bob rubs
 Selma's feet and pumices her corns.  Selma lets Ralph Mellish pass his
 drivers license eye test (even though he gets it wrong).
   We now return to the 27th Annual Krusty the Clown Telethon for Motion Sickness.
   -- ``Black Widower''
 The latest total is displayed.
   I love you people!  I love my kids!  [indicates]
   Poor little guys.  So tragic.  So nauseous.  You should see the bus they
   came to the studio in!
   -- Krusty hosts his Telethon for Motion Sickness, ``Black Widower''
 Krusty introduces the ``Chairman of the Company'', who says there's an old
 friend backstage.  Sideshow Bob comes out on stage, and the two hug.
   Sideshow Bob: Krusty, can you ever forgive me for framing you and putting
           you in jail?
   Krusty: Hey, if they ever open the books on this telethon, I'm right back
           in there!
   -- Telethon for Motion Sickness, ``Black Widower''
 Bart and Lisa watch the telethon, and Bart's mistrust of Sideshow Bob
 continues.  Krusty kicks Sideshow Bob in the butt.  ``Oh, Krusty, I
 can't tell you how much [kick] I missed this.''

 Marge, Homer, Selma and Sideshow Bob sit at the kitchen table.
   Marge: Now, about your wedding dress.  Mmm, I'm not sure how to put this...
   Selma: White!
   Marge: [writing] White.
   -- ``Black Widower''
 As for appetizers, Homer suggests...
   Homer: You can't go wrong with cocktail weenies!  They taste as good as
          they look, and they come with this delicious red sauce.  It
          looks like ketchup.  It tastes like ketchup.  But brother, it
          ain't ketchup!
   Sideshow Bob: Well, Selma, he makes a good case.
   -- Catering the wedding, ``Black Widower''
 Selma says they can get whatever they want.  ``All tastes like styrofoam
 to me.''  Selma explains that, when she was a kid, a bottle rocket
 accidentally shot up her nose.  ``I permanently lost my sense of taste
 and smell.''
   This wedding is spinning out of control.  Can we really afford it?
   I've already run through eight of the ten dollars they gave me when
   I left prison.
   -- Sideshow Bob, ``Black Widower''
   Hey, relax.  I told you, I got money.
   I bought stock in a mace company just before society crumbled.
   -- Selma, ``Black Widower''
   I just hope people don't think I'm marrying you for your money.
   Instead of your... less tangible qualities.
   -- Sideshow Bob to Selma, ``Black Widower''
 Bart continues to eye Sideshow Bob suspiciously.

 Sideshow Bob and Selma kiss in a horse-drawn carriage, then Selma glances
 at her watch and yells, ``Holy frijoles!  We've got ten minutes to
   Selma: Driver, here's a fin.  Get me home and don't spare the whip!
   Barney: [the carriage driver]  Whatever you say, Mum! [belch]
   -- For that added romantic touch, ``Black Widower''
 Selma rushes home, having missed the beginning of MacGyver.  Sideshow Bob
 is disappointed that he's not the only man in her life.  Time passes.
   Man:      Thank you, Senor MacGyver.  You've saved our village.
   MacGyver: Don't thank me.  Thank the moon's gravitational pull.
   -- Watching television, ``Black Widower''
   Selma: That MacGyver's a genius.
   Sideshow Bob: First of all, he's not a genius.  He's an actor.
          And second, he's not <much> of an actor.
   Selma: [refusing to believe]  You're lying!  You're lying!
   Sideshow Bob: No, Selma.  <This> is lying.
          [puts on an absurd smile]
          That was a well-plotted piece of nonclaptrap that never
          made me want to retch.
   -- Telling it like it is, ``Black Widower''
 Selma storms out in tears.

 Marge tries to calm down Selma in the Simpsons living room.  Bart is
 pleased that this means the wedding is off.  Sideshow Bob tiptoes in.
   Sideshow Bob: Selma, I don't know what to say...
   Selma: Just tell me you like MacGyver.
   Sideshow Bob: Very well, I... I... [breaks down]
          I can't do it!  Even that car chase seemed tacked-on!
   -- A critical eye, ``Black Widower''
   Homer: I hate all the programs Marge likes, but it's no big deal.
          You know why?
   Selma: No.
   Sideshow Bob: Go on.
   Homer: Whenever Marge turns on one of her ``non-violent'' programs,
          I take a walk.  I go to a bar, I pound a few, then I stumble
          home in the mood for looooove. [puts his hand on Marge's lap]
   Marge: [smiles, takes his hand]
   -- Meeting halfway, ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob decides to take Homer's advice, and the two reconcile.
   Bart no like.  Bad medicine.
   -- Bart expresses his disapproval, ``Black Widower''
 Maggie proves an adorable (although poorly-balanced) flower girl at the
   Lisa: [bitterly] <I> could've been the flower girl.  And I wouldn't keep
         falling down, either.
   Bart: Hey, they chose Maggie, okay?
   Lisa: Yeah, well, if you want to go for cutesiness instead of competence, fine.
   -- Selma's wedding, ``Black Widower''
 Reverend Lovejoy performs the ceremony.  As Sideshow Bob turns to say,
 ``I do'', Bart sees his face turn into the Grim Reaper.

 At the wedding reception, Moe and Barney greet a champagne tray.  Moe
 takes the glass.  Barney takes the bottle.  Meanwhile, Homer surrounds
 himself with hors d'oeuvres trays.  Patty quietly complains, ``I'm the
 only single girl left in the family.''  She spots Homer gorging himself.
 ``Well, I guess it could be worse.''
   Marge:  [wielding a camcorder at Selma's wedding reception]
           Ooh, there's Krusty the Clown.  Krusty, Krusty, say something funny!
   Krusty: Oh, gee, a joke.  Um... Um... Uh, funny, uh, okay.  Uh,
           this guy walks into a bar and takes out a tiny piano and a
           twelve-inch pianist.  Oh hoho, no, wait!  I can't tell <that> one!
   -- ``Black Widower''
 At cake-cutting time, Sideshow Bob makes a brief speech, and Selma announces
 that, on the advice of her new husband, she's giving up smoking.
 Except after meals and after MacGyver.  Bart remains suspicious.

 Bart asks Chief Wiggum if he trusts Sideshow Bob.  Chief Wiggum reassures
 Bart that Sideshow Bob wouldn't try anything while he's around.  He
 then asks himself, ``Now where did I put my gun?''  He spots it next to
 the wedding cake.  Some children take slices of cake lying only inches
 away from the gun.

 It's rice-throwing time, and Selma and Sideshow Bob drive off.  All wave
 good-bye, except for Bart, who continues to scowl.

 That evening, Sideshow Bob drives down the highway as Selma sleeps on his
 shoulder.  ``That's right, dear.  Enjoy your rest.  The wedding was very
 tough on you.  And the honeymoon is going to be... murder...''  His evil
 laugh echoes into the darkness.

 [End of Act Two.  Time: 14:35]

 At home, the family watch a videotape of Selma's honeymoon suite
 at Shelbyville Falls.  (``Hey, and after we watch this, we can tape over
 it!'' notes Homer.)  The camera pans to Sideshow Bob roughing up the
 bellhop for not giving them a room with a fireplace.  He then spots
 the camera and smiles.

 Apparently, Sideshow Bob's complaining paid off.  He lights the fire,
 with the aid of the natural gas starter.
   Ah, fire!  Scourge of Prometheus!  Toaster of marshmallows!
   [evilly] Eradicator of deadwood...
   -- Sideshow Bob lights the fireplace, ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob suggests Selma shut off the camera.  Selma, lying in bed,
 rips off the covers.  ``And make love?''  Sideshow Bob replies, resigned,
 ``I suppose so.''  The videotape ends.

 Back home, Bart wonders why Sideshow Bob would get so upset over a fireplace.
 Marge explains that he wants the honeymoon to be romantic.  ``Romantic?
 With Aunt Selma?''

 While Selma moans with delight, Sideshow Bob rushes frantically into the
 bathroom, scrubs himself, and splashes water on his face.  He says to
 himself, ``Even murder has its ugly side.''  Selma calls, ``Bob, would
 you mind rubbing my feet?''  Sideshow Bob shudders...  He returns.
 ``Darling, you make it sound like such a chore!''
   Sideshow Bob: [rubbing Selma's feet] [quietly]  Soon I will kill you...
   Selma:  What?
   Sideshow Bob: Son pied sent il beau.
           French for ``Her foot smells lovely.''
   Selma:  [calms down]  Oh...
   Sideshow Bob: [quietly] Prepare to be murdered...
   Selma:  Huh?
   Sideshow Bob: /eh pah dee meh moo-doo/.
           That's Sanskrit for ``Your toes are like perfume.''
   Selma:  [calms down]  Oh...
   Sideshow Bob: [quietly] Voy a matar a Usted.
   Selma:  Wha?
   Sideshow Bob: That's Spanish for... [quietly] I'm going to kill you...
   -- ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob quickly changes the subject.  It's time to watch MacGyver.
 While Selma sits in her comfy chair, Sideshow Bob carefully places a
 pack of cigarettes next to Selma, then evilly tiptoes across
 the room.  A knob goes *squeak*, then he tiptoes back.  ``Well,
 time for my walk!''  He quietly adds, ``Don't forget to die...''

 Patty stops by the Simpsons house, feeling somewhat lonely.  She asks
 to watch television with them and turns on MacGyver.  The word ``MacGyver''
 echos through Bart's head, then Bart stands and announces, ``Aunt Selma
 has one hour to live!''  Homer responds, ``Hey!  Down in front!''

 Sideshow Bob enjoys a drink by the hotel pool and says, ``Good-bye.''
 There is a tremendous explosion.  Sideshow Bob calmly picks up the
 phone and frantically reports a terrible accident in his room.

 Sideshow Bob returns to the exploded room (singing, ``Then I went and
 spoiled it all by doing something stupid like explode you'') as he
 approaches Selma's TV chair.  He spins it around, to find Bart sitting
 in it.  ``Sideshow Bob, I'm afraid the only victims here are the good
 people of Best Western Hotels.''  Sideshow Bob is understandably shocked
 to find Bart, as well as Selma, very much alive.
   You tried to kill me.  I want a separation.
   -- Selma to her husband of nary a few days Sideshow Bob, ``Black Widower''
 Sideshow Bob finds himself surrounded by police.
   My best-laid plans have gang agley!
   -- Sideshow Bob, poetic to the end, ``Black Widower''
   Bart:   Chief Wiggum, think you have room in your jail for a two-time loser?
   Wiggum: Well, no, frankly.  But that never stopped us before.
   -- Sideshow Bob, foiled again, ``Black Widower''
   Sideshow Bob: Bart, I must know.  How did you untangle my web?
   Chief Wiggum: Yeah, Bart, pull us in!
   Bart:         Well, I'd hate to tell the number one cop in town how to do
                 his job...
   Chief Wiggum: No no, please.  It's the only way I'll learn.
   -- ``Black Widower''
 Bart explains.  He realized that the reason Sideshow Bob got so frantic
 over a measly fireplace was for the natural gas.  Surely anyone would have
 smelled a gas leak---except Selma.  While she watched MacGyver, the room
 filled with gas, and the spark from her post-MacGyver cigarette would set
 it off.
   Her only hope was a plucky young boy and his slow-witted father.
   -- Bart the Hero, ``Black Widower''
 After trying four times to explain it to Homer, Bart explained it to
 Marge, who understood immediately, and the family mobilized.
   To the Simpson-Mobile!
   -- Homer, ``Black Widower''
 With a burst of flame, the Simpson-Mobile speeds off for Shelbyville.
 In her room, Selma prepares to light her cigarette, but Bart storms in
 and stops her just in time.

 But why, then, did the room explode?  Chief Wiggum and his men celebrated
 their success by smoking cigars in the hallway.  Chief Wiggum's carelessly
 discarded match ignited the gas.  Sideshow Bob is taken away.
   I'll be back.  You can't keep the Democrats out of the White House forever.
   And when they get in, I'm back on the street!  With all of my criminal buddies!
   -- Sideshow Bob, ``Black Widower''
   There was one little boy who never lost his mistrust.
   -- Marge, on Bart's unraveling of Sideshow Bob's murderous plan,
      ``Black Widower''
 Bart tells an incredibly feeble joke, and everyone chuckles endlessly.

 [End of Act Three.  Time: 20:20]
   Episode summaries Copyright 1992 by Raymond Chen.  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

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