The Simpsons (and other) shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show

The episodes are listed in the order they were originally broadcast by FOX, which is also the order Comedy Central showed them (well, sort of).

The numbers before each title indicate the episode number in the order they were shown and the episode ID number (if it had one); the "MG" number after the title of the Simpsons shorts indicate the "internal" ID number of the short, used in the episode capsules. (This number does not appear on the show itself.)

The shorts are quite different from the half-hour show; see the Notes at the end of the list.


Titles in parentheses are "Dr. N!Godatu" shorts by M.K. Brown with Julie Payne as Dr. Janice N!Godatu

1 (4W02) - (Dr. N!godatu)
Dr. N!godatu wore her pink slippers to work; not to worry, since she keeps a pair of pumps in a drawer for just such an emergency - but the drawer is filled with pink slippers

2 (4W03) - (Blind Date)
Dr. N!godatu has a dream date with a lawyer who's also a surgeon; unfortunately, he's also someone who likes to talk about himself too much

3 (4W04) - Good Night - MG01 - April 19 1987
Dad and Mom say "good night" to their kids - but Bart wants to know how tangible the mind is, Lisa is afraid of being bitten by bedbugs, and Maggie takes "Rock-A-Bye Baby" too literally

4 (4W01) - (Freeway)
Dr. N!godatu is going shopping with her friend Pat (voice of Nancy Cartwright), who never drives over bridges, through tunnels, or - until Act III - on the freeway

5 (4W06) - Watching Television - MG02 - May 3 1987
Bart and Lisa can't agree on what channel to watch, but they can agree to yell at Maggie when she tries to change stations

6 (4W07) - Bart Jumps - MG03 - May 10 1987
Dad tries to get Bart to jump into his arms, but every time Bart tries, Homer isn't there to make the catch

7 (4W26) - (Fishtank)
Dr. N!godatu's fish are doing strange things, which is nothing compared to what the two repairmen (voice of Dan Castellaneta) are doing trying to fix it

8 (4W08) - Babysitting Maggie - MG04 - May 31 1987
While Bart and Lisa are watching TV, Maggie chases a butterfly along - and off of - the roof

9 (no number listed; must be 4W09) - (The Dream)
Dr. N!Godatu has a strange dream - and that guy in it looks like her blind date from an earlier short

10 (4W10) - The Pacifier - MG05 - June 21 1987
Bart and Lisa try to make Maggie stop sucking her pacifier, but they can't take it away (she has a drawer full of them), can't play "keep away" with it (she bites Bart), and can't even put hot sauce on it (Maggie just adds more)

11 (4W25) - Burp Contest - MG06 - June 28 1987
Mom tells the kids "no burping", but that doesn't stop them from having a contest to see who can do it best

12 (4W11) - Eating Dinner - MG07 - July 12 1987
Tonight's main course is some purple stuff, but first say Grace: "Good drink...good meat...good God, let's eat!"

13 (4W12) - (Scanner)
Dr. N!Godatu breaks out a scanner that converts brain activity into a TV picture


14 (4W15) - Making Faces - MG09 - September 22 1987
The kids make scary faces, despite Mom's warning that they'll freeze that way forever

15 (4W17) - The Funeral - MG14 - October 4 1987
The kids' Uncle Hubert "passed on" - or, as Bart says, "pulled the croak chain"

16 (4W14) - Maggie's Brain - MG10 - October 11 1987
Bart and Lisa wonders what Maggie is thinking; it switches from "my brother and sister are demons" to "let's see how you two like being tickled"

17 (4W24) - Football - MG08 - October 18 1987
It's Frosty Chocolate Milkshakes all round as soon as Bart catches one of Dad's long passes - look out for that cliff...

18 (4W15) - House of Cards - MG12 - October 25 1987
Bart tries building a giant house of cards, despite Lisa's interruptions and Maggie's sucking

19 (4W05) - Bart and Dad Eat Dinner - MG15 - November 1 1987
The women are at the ballet, so it's either Fish Nuggets or Pork-A-, wait; it's Fish-Pork-A-Roni a la Simpson!

20 (4W18) - Space Patrol - MG13 - November 8 1987
Space pilot Lisuey and her spunky sidekick Mageena protect Earth from Bartron, the berserk Martian robot (who looks like Bart with a vase stuck on his head)

21 (4W13) - Bart's Haircut - MG18 - November 15 1987
Bart's hair is too long, so he's tossed into the barber shop, where the only style the barber knows is a bald cut

22 (4W22) - World War III - MG20 - November 22 1987
Dad wakes everybody up for a nuclear attack drill...again and again

23 (4W19) - The Perfect Crime - MG16 - December 13 1987
Bart tries to steal cookies from the jar and thinks Maggie will be blamed

24 (4W21) - Scary Stories - MG17 - December 20 1987
Bart tells Lisa and Maggie scary stories, each one becoming more and more true...

25 (4W23) - Grandpa and the Kids - MG19 - January 10 1988
When Grampa feigns his own death, Lisa blames Bart
First appearance of Grampa Simpson

26 (4W20) - Gone Fishin' - MG11 - January 24 1988
Bart and Dad go fishing, although it's more of a ride down the rapids

27 (5W01) - Skateboarding - MG21 - February 7 1988
Bart, Lisa, and even Maggie take to their boards for some sidewalk surfing

28 (5W02) - The Pagans - MG22 - February 14 1988
Bart, Lisa, and Maggie convert to paganism en route to church

29 (5W03) - The Closet - MG23 - February 21 1988
Bart, thinking Dad wants him to do chores, hides in the closet

30 (5W04) - The Aquarium - MG24 - February 28 1988
Dad takes the kids to the aquarium, where Bart takes a swim in the shark tank

31 (5W05) - Family Portrait - MG25 - March 6 1988
The family gathers together for a photograph, although none of the shots are exactly worthy of going on the wall...

32 (5W06) - Bart's Hiccups - MG26 - March 13 1988
Doctor Lisa and Nurse Maggie resort to unorthodox methods to cure Bart (hic) "I knew it - not enough hot sauce"

33 (5W07) - The Money Jar - MG27 - March 20 1988
Lisa and Maggie face the struggle between good and evil as they go for Mom's money in the cookie jar; it's a little easier for Bart, as his conscience agrees with his greed

34 (5W09) - The Art Museum - MG29 - May 1 1988
Dad and Mom aren't sure that the kids are ready for culture... a thought that is confirmed when Bart expresses an interest in nudes

35 (5W08) - Zoo Story - MG28 - May 8 1988
The Simpsons meet a strangely familiar monkey family


Titles in parentheses indicate shows consisting entirely of clips of "live action" sketches from "The Tracey Ullman Show" featuring one of Tracey's regular characters

36 (5W10) - Shut Up Simpsons - MG30 - November 6 1988
Grampa, Homer, and the kids get on each other's nerves
Beginning with this episode, the shorts appear as a single story rather than divided into three or four parts

37 (5W11) - The Shell Game - MG35 - November 13 1988
Bart tries to hide the cookie the took from the jar from his parents, so he turns three bowls over...and it's not under any of them?

38 (5W12) - The Bart Simpson Show - MG38 - November 20 1988
When Dad tells Bart and Lisa to stop watching Itchy & Scratchy, Bart puts on his own pulling out the picture tube and getting into the TV set
First appearance of Itchy & Scratchy

39 (5W13) - Punching Bag - MG33 - November 27 1988
Lisa gets Bart to increase his punching by drawing Dad's face on it; when Mom sees it, she shows Bart how it should be done

40 (5W14) - Simpson Xmas - MG40 - December 18 1988
The kids try to get a sneak peek at their Christmas pressents; what was Dad thinking when he got Bart a ping-pong-ball gun?

41 (5W16) - (Francesca's Autobiography)
The Simpsons isn't the only series to do a "clip show"; Francesca's father and his male lover come across Francesca's autobiography in progress, pages of which are reflected in clips from Francesca sketches from past episodes

42 (5W17) - The Krusty the Clown Show - MG39 - January 15 1989
The kids see Krusty do his show live, but Bart thinks that it's "just some guy in clown makeup"

43 (5W18) - Bart the Hero - MG34 - January 29 1989
Bart is sent out for some exercise, and foils a candy store robbery
Note "Chupo" is how you pronounce animation executive Gabor Csupo's last name (in real life, he looks and somewhat sounds like Dr. Nick Riviera)

44 (5W19) - Bart's Little Fantasy - MG41 - February 5 1989
When Dad and Mom tell the kids to clean up a messy room, Bart tells a story about three large kids who throw their small parents into a similar room

45 (5W20) - Scary Movie - MG37 - February 12 1989
The kids go to see a Happy Little Elves movie, but Bart takes his sisters to a Space Mutants movie instead

46 (5W21) - Home Hypnotism - MG32 - February 19 1989
Dad and Mom try to make the kids calm down with hypnosis, but it (apparently) turns them into zombies instead

47 (5W22) - Shoplifting - MG31 - February 26 1989
Bart tries to steal some chocolate from a candy store, and doesn't quite make it...

48 (5W23) - Echo Canyon - MG36 - March 12 1989
The family stops during their vacation drive at another rest stop, where Bart nearly crushes the car with a large boulder

49 (5W24) - Bathtime - MG44 - March 19 1989
Bart turns his bath into the adventures of Bart Simpseau - too bad he left the water running

50 (5W25) - Bart's Nightmare - MG45 - March 26 1989
Bart eats too many cookies and dreams that they're out to get him

51 (5W26) - (Kay: Trapped)
What, two clip shows in one season? In this one, Kay gets trapped in an elevator and has her life pass in front of her eyes, and thanks to Kay sketches from past episodes, in front of our eyes as well

52 (5W27) - Bart of the Jungle - MG46 - April 16 1989
Bart, Lisa, and Maggie swing from the trees - well, from Dad's ties tied to the trees

53 (5W28) - Family Therapy - MG47 - April 23 1989
Under the guise of going for frosty chocolate milkshakes, Dad takes the family to a psychologist to determine why they don't laugh any more

54 (5W29) - Maggie in Peril: Chapter One - MG42 - April 30 1989
When Bart kicks Maggie's ball out of the yard, Maggie hops on Bart's skateboard and chases it to a waterfall, where she's falling over the falls - "To be continued NEXT WEEK"

55 (5W30) - Maggie in Peril: the Thrilling Conclusion - MG43 - May 7 1989
Maggie survies the fall high and dry, and manages to get back home with the help of some helium balloons

56 (5W15) - T.V. Simpsons - MG48 - May 14 1989
When Bart's kite hits the outdoor antenna, Dad climbs the roof in an attempt to restore his TV picture


There are 23 fourth season episodes (numbered 59-81 - there are no episodes 57 or 58); there are no shorts in these episodes, except for episode 69, which has a repeat of "Simpson Xmas"

    Notes about the shorts

  1. The first two seasons' shorts are VERY crude by today's standards. The characters bear only a vague resemblance to the ones today, especially in terms of their hair. The voices are closer to what you expect to hear today, although Homer is in his "old" voice (the one used in the first season of half-hour shows); after all, the same actors are used. (Liz Georges did Maggie's speaking at the end of "Good Night"; other than that, Yeardley Smith does Maggie's talking/babbling/squealing. It's not certain if she did Maggie's crying at the end of "Babysitting Maggie".) Even Maggie's pacifier sucking sounds different than it does now; supposedly, animation director Gabor Csupo (pronounced "Chupo", as in the candy store in "Bart the Hero") provided the sound effect himself.

  2. Although some of the descriptions refer to the parents as Homer and Marge, the name "Marge" is NEVER used, not even in credits. The name "Homer" never appears in titles or credits (it's "Dad" (as in "Bart and Dad Eat Dinner") or "Mr. Simpson"), but the name is used in 12 of the episodes, beginning with "The Pagans" (even Lisa calls him "Homer" once, in "The Bart Simpson Show"). Most of the time, the parents don't receive credits at the end of the show (because they already receive credits for being in the main cast); the same people who do the half-hour show (Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith) do the voices in the shorts. The only character in all 48 of the shorts is Bart, although he has no lines in "Maggie in Peril: Chapter One". As an example, Bart is the only character that is in both "Gone Fishin'" and "Space Patrol". ("Bart Jumps", "Gone Fishin'", and "Bathtime" have just Bart and Homer; "The Pacifier", "Maggie's Brain", "House of Cards", "Space Patrol", "Skateboarding", "Bart's Hiccups", and "Scary Movie" have just Bart, Lisa, and Maggie.)

  3. The characters act a little differently than what you might be used to:
    • Lisa isn't "the smart one", but more like "a younger, female, more conscientious Bart" - Lisa is more likely to play some sort of prank on Bart than Bart is on Lisa;
    • Maggie is very prone to imitate something Lisa is doing (see the start of Act III of "Bart's Hiccups") or just did (when she keeps saluting in Act IV of "Space Patrol"), and she speaks in a couple of episodes ("Good Night" and "Making Faces") in a rather high-pitched squeaky voice (she also tries to repeat what Lisa says in "House of Cards" and "Making Faces", but it comes out as gibberish);
    • Marge almost invariably acts the way you would expect a mother of three kids to act (the first time you hear her "modern" voice is at the end of "World War III");
    • Homer isn't as dumb as the half-hour series makes him out to be, although he does perform antics that get him on the wrong side of the others (for example, the way he orders Marge around in "Punching Bag");
    • Bart is Bart (with one exception: he shows a flash of intelligence in "Good Night"); who else would flood the bathroom ("Bathtime"), rip out the inside of a TV set ("The Bart Simpson Show"), or eat a freshly baked batch of cookies and then blame Maggie while his mouth was still full ("The Perfect Crime")?

  4. During the first two seasons (ending with "Zoo Story"), the shorts were divided into three or four "acts" and shown before and after the show's "live-action" parts. Usually, a show has a live-action sketch followed by Act I, then a commercial, then Act II, the second sketch, Act III, the third sketch, and Act IV. (Shorts with only three acts usually begin after the commercial; there's at least one short with its last act after the second commercial, just before Tracey's closing monologue.) In the third season (beginning with "Shut Up Simpsons"), the stories are contained in a single part, usually just after the commercial break halfway through the show. ("Shut Up Simpsons" and "Home Hypnotism" may have been originally made in "acts" and later blended together.)

  5. Note the constant use of the word "shorts". None of these last longer than 2 minutes in all. Also note that, like shows in syndication, cable TV shows have more commercials than broadcast network prime-time shows; in order to make the show fit into a half-hour slot, the cable network must either make cuts in the shows or show fewer commercials (and, as a result, make less money) than they are entitled to do. (Even if the cable network showed fewer commercials, there's always the chance that the local cable providers would not realize that there are fewer commercials and show a "local" commercial over part of the show.)
    In the first few episodes Comedy Central showed, the shorts were cut in the same places as when Lifetime showed them, even though Comedy Central said they would be making their own cuts rather than using the ones Lifetime used. More than likely, 20th-Century Fox cut the episodes themselves prior to making them available to the cable stations. (When FOX first showed "Babysitting Maggie" in 1987, there were enough objections to Maggie sticking a fork in an electric socket that the scene was removed from the tape "on the spot"; it did not appear when FOX repeated the episode, and was not shown in any cable repeat.)
    Either that, or it's an incredible coincidence...

  6. The vast majority of shorts deal only with the five characters. Some characters that are in the half-hour series are also in the shorts, including Grampa, Itchy & Scratchy, Krusty (although this one's real voice is different from his clown voice), and the Happy Little Elves. (In "Family Therapy", they visit a psychiatrist, but it's not Dr. Marvin Monroe.) There's no mention or display of where Homer works or where Bart and Lisa go to school, and there are no pets (named Snowball or anything else).

  7. The "Dr. N!Godatu" (pronounced without a vowel sound preceeding the N and a clicked G) sketches are written by M.K. Brown and star Julie Payne as Dr. Janice N!Godatu. Two Simpsons regulars do voices: Nancy Cartwright in "Freeway" (as Dr. N!Godatu's friend who refuses to drive on freeways, through tunnels, or over bridges - check the title if you need to know which of the three they end up on), and Dan Castellaneta in "Blind Date" (as the date) and "Fishtank" (as the fish tank repairmen).

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Last updated on August 16, 1998 by Don Del Grande (