[4F08] The Twisted World of Marge Simpson

The Twisted World of Marge Simpson              Written by Jennifer Crittenden
                                                      Directed by Chuck Sheetz
Production code: 4F08                       Original Airdate on FOX: 19-Jan-97
Capsule revision B, 14-Jun-97

"TV Guide" Synopsis {jmb}

A smooth talker sells Marge on "mobile pretzel retailing." But when sales go soft, Homer asks for help -- from organized crime boss Fat Tony.

Title sequence

Blackboard :- I am not licensed to do anything Couch :- The living room is filled with six holes, out of which various members of the family pop their heads a la "Whack a Mole", all on the 2F12 clown music. A giant mallet pounds down at them but constantly misses -- until Homer's head pops out. THUMP. {np}

Did you notice...

... when Marge meets the Investorettes at the show, she says hello to everyone except Maude? ... Homer's hat and badge read "Official Pretzel Inspector", and he uses a micrometer to measure them? ... Mindy (or a very lookalike) is in the pita lineup at the plant? Dale G. Abersold: ... this was Marcia Wallace's first appearance this season? ... "Chuck Sheetz" (the director's name) sounds suspiciously like a pseudonym? Stephan Bonneville: ... Marge didn't wear a hairnet when she was making the pretzels? ... there seem to be a lot of people interested in the picture nudging booth? Frederic Briere: ... it seems the pretzels are baked only 3 (during the musical) or 9 (at the end) at a time? (Gosh, think about the electricity bill!) James R. Curry: ... Lisa has no objections to a phony ticker-tape parade, and even participates? ... Homer actually fools the staff at the nuclear plant into buying Pretzels, he outsmarts them for once? ... the snake tatto on Cletus' arm? ... Moe's restroom has an outdoor exit? Joshua Fruhlinger: ... the writers avoided the obvious gag of having Homer eat a whole batch of pretzels? ... the Italian mafiosi seem to know some marshal arts moves of their own? Don Del Grande: ... the Simpsons have a TV that's smaller than their main one but bigger than the small one Bart had stolen from him in 1F09, and a VCR for it? ... Cletus named 26 children, and there were 26 children visible in the scene when he's done calling them? ... to make pretzels, Marge only needs two ingredients from two bags, one marked "ingredients" and one marked "salt"? ... when Bart and Lisa high-five each other, Bart uses his left hand and Lisa her right? ["High-four" (sorry) --Roger Smith] ... there's a "Hot Cocoa" machine at SNPP? (Usually, vending machines that dispense hot chocolate also dispense coffee and are marked "Coffee") ... despite the fact that Fat Tony's gang tried to kill Homer in 2F12, Homer goes to them for help? ... Marge's digital alarm clock does not use seven-segment displays for its digits? ... in the scene with the garage door opener, there's a broken yellow line running down the street in front of the house? ... the Pretzel Wagon phone number is 555-3226? ... Marge has a phone next to her bed? ... when Maggie falls, her pacifier comes out of her mouth (this may be the first time this happened in a fall)? ... the back door that's next to the kitchen entrance is back? Jonathan Haas: ... Marge keeps her checkbook in her hair? ... the piles of pretzels at the funeral? ... the $-shaped pretzel in the montage? ... the big crate of Garbanzo Beans on the ship? Jason Hancock: ... the crooked clown picture is frowning, while the straight picture is smiling? ... this is Disco Stu's first speaking role since "Two Bad Neighbors" (3F09)? ... Skinner is unshaven when Marge visits him? ... Fat Tony is married? ... the Japanese Mafia outnumber the American Mafia, 5 to 3? ... this is the first episode copyrighted in 1997? Diego Kontarovsky: ... Maggie sits within reach of a knife when eating dinner? ... the ketchup-like bottle at the dinner table is no bigger than a water glass? ... everyone at the stadium was eating their pretzel simultaneously? ... neither Grampa or Fat Tony bothered to use the doorbell? Ondre Lombard: ... Luanne Van Houten's attire has become more trendy since her breakup with Kirk? ... how quickly the Investorettes turn against Marge? ... Frank disparages the "sea of flashy gimmicks and empty promises" and then starts smooth-talking Marge? ... Marge uses the unflattering word "fat" when referring to overweight people? ... how interesting it is that the girls' new venture is aboard the "Fleet-A-Pita," and the song echoing out their vehicle is by Fleetwood Mac? ... Cletus can remember all 26 of his children's names that easily? ... no one is at Moe's but Homer and Fat Tony? ... Marge doesn't recognize Fat Tony as being Bart's former boss? ... Marge never worries about the FBI investigating her ill-gotten gains? ... how out of character it is for Maude to (indirectly) use violence to stop Marge? ... most of the pretzels Marge makes go to waste? Nate Patrin: ... Frank Ormand has a white lawn jockey? (Where do they sell those?) Damian Penny: ... the seventies-style lettering at Disco Stu's booth? Dallas Pesola: ... Bart whistles like R2-D2 as he walks over the fallen Investo the Robot? ... the "Duck Crossing" sign next to Frank Ormands front walk? ... the Japanese mafia guy says "Sega!" when he leaps over Fat Tony? Brian Petersen: ... if you look carefully enough, you'll notice that the couch scene was sped up via fast tape playback during the original editing of the episode, and was not actually animated at that speed? Benjamin J. Robinson: ... Lisa lifts Maggie's hair net over her eyes? (Nice attention to detail -- it would have been easy to have the net "magically" correct itself in the next scene.) ... at Moe's, Homer leaves his beer unattended? Liam J. Scanlan: ... this is the first time that Maude is the only Flanders to appear in an episode? ... Helen draws a heart at the top of the line chart? ... Homer goes to work, dispite his "illness"? (poked in the eye by hotdog) ... the man who always punches people works in Sector 7G? Marge Starbrod-Simpson: ... Fox was dumb enough to use the second to last scene in the promos to this ep? ... there is no sign of Don Vittorio DiMaggio in this episode?

Voice credits {ol} {dga}

- Starring - Dan Castellaneta (Homer, Louie, Hans, Grampa, little Yakuza man) - Julie Kavner (Marge) - Nancy Cartwright (Bart) - Yeardley Smith (Lisa) - Hank Azaria (Investo the robot, Royce McCutcheon, Disco Stu, "Fleet-A-Pita" chef, Wiggum, Lenny, Carl, Cletus, Bumblebee Man, baseball announcer #2,Lou, Moe) - Harry Shearer (Picture Perfect Guy, Burns, Skinner, baseball announcer #1) - Special Guest Voices - Jack Lemmon (Frank Ormand) - Joe Mantegna (Fat Tony) - Marcia Wallace (Edna Krabappel) - Also Starring - Tress MacNeille (Agnes Skinner, "Fleet-A-Pita" lady, Funeral Usher) - Maggie Roswell (Helen, Maude, Luanne)

Movie (and other) references

~ James Bond {hl} - Bart's Blackboard line is "I am not licensed to do anything" + Whack-A-Mole - the couch scene imitates America's favorite mole-whacking game + "International House of Pancakes" - Municipal House of Pancakes - The outside and inside styling is very similar, too {bjr} ~ Microsoft {jh} - Oklasoft sounds similar + "Lost in Space" - Investo the Robot says "Danger! Danger!" like the Robot from the series "Star Wars" {dp2} - Bart's R2-D2 whistle sound + "Can't Stop the Music", by the Village People {hl} - Disco Stu's Can't Stop the Learnin' Disco Academies + "Do the Hustle" by Van McCoy and the Soul City Symphony - Plays in the background at Disco Stu's booth + "Saturday Night Fever" - Picture of Travolta as Tony Manero on the wall behind Disco Stu + "Happy Days" {dp} - Disco Stu goes "a-y-y-y-y" like the Fonz + "I'm Gonna Get You Sucka" {np} - Disco Stu's goldfish platforms are similar to a pair worn by a pimp in the film + "New Attitude", 1985 song by Patti LaBelle {dp2} - Fleet-A-Pita new franchise welcome song + "The Grapes of Wrath", 1940 movie based on John Steinbeck's novel {dp2} - The Frank Ormand Pretzel Wagon territory speech to Marge is a play on Tom Joad's famous lines + "Don't Stop", 1977 hit by Fleetwood Mac {dp2} - Played by the Fleet-A-Pita crew as they pulled into the SNPP parking lot + Q-bert, 80's video game - One of Cletus' kids bears this name + Vin Scully, Los Angeles Dodgers' announcer - The stadium PA announcer sounds like him + Pontiac Trans Sport/Chevy Lumina APV {dp} - "Pontiac Astro Wagon" is a copy "Godfather" {hl} - Splattering pizza in restaurant similar to Al Pacino's hit job. "Casino" {np} - The confrontation between Marge and Fat Tony in the desert is similar to the one between DeNiro's and Pesci's characters

Previous episode references

- Disco Stu "cool" appearances {hl} - [3F09] First cool appearance - [3F18] Seen laughing at uncool Nelson - [4F05] Seen in cool crowd - [4F08] Selling cool disco dancing academy franchise - The zen of pretzels {hl} - [7G04] Moe offers pretzels to Eddie, who takes beer instead - [8F04] Barney "pulls a Homer" by finding a pretzel on the floor - [8F16] Homer's love postcard mentions "big chewy pretzels" - [9F17] Homer wolfs down pretzels while watching TV - [3F14] Burns says Lenny's breath "reeked of pretzeled bread" - [4F08] Marge starts a Pretzel Wagon franchise - Fat Tony's appearances {ljs} - [8F03] Hires Bart as bartender - [2F12] Tries to kill Krusty (and Homer) for $48 - [3F15] Said Troy McClure "sleeps with the fishes" - [3F20] Sells fake ID papers to Apu - [4F03] Assists to the Simpson-Tatum fight - [4F08] Sets up a pretzel monopoly on Springfield - Mindy Simmons' last known whereabouts - [1F07] Puts Homer in marital jeopardy - [2F33] Homer says she "hit the bottle pretty hard and lost her job" - [3F10] Is a member of the "Homewreckers" (in the last shot) - [4F08] Appears in the crowd at SNPP - [7F05] OFF is a piece of the publicity at a baseball game {ljs} - [7F12] "Do the Hustle" is played {hl} - [8F09] Marge plans an investment {ljs} - [8F20] A feeble joke is told and laughed at {ol} - [9F07] A Simpson goes into business {jh} - [9F07] Homer eliminates the competition from Barney (cf. the mob helps eliminate the competition for Marge) {ol} - [9F07] OFF goes to an expo {mss} - [9F12] "Tomato (Pretzel) Day", where everybody throws tomatoes (pretzels) at the media - [9F16] Homer's informing Marge of Bobby Mindix's impressions is similar to Homer informing Marge of what "Gracias" means {ol} - [1F03], [3F08] Marge drives through the desert. {ljs} - [1F08] Otto is accosted by a casino greeter (cf. Investo accosting the Simpsons) {ol} - [1F17] Skinner has an unpleasant experience with buying something from a Simpson door-to-door {ol} - [1F18] Luigi first appears. {hl} - [2F08] "Lost in Space" robot is spoofed {mr} - [2F12] The "Clown Music" (used in [4F08]'s couch gag) - [3F06] "Hang in there" poster appears. {hl} - [3F11] Jennifer Crittenden writes a Marge-centered episode {ol} - [3F11] Lisa encourages Marge into buying the Chanel suit (cf. Lisa encourages Marge to venture into her own business) {ol} - [3F11] Marge is alienated by female peers {ol} - [3F11] Marge's excitement for something new is spoiled {ol} - [3F12] Skinner's mother's name revealed to be Agnes - [4F02] "The Genesis Tub" is left woefully incomplete like this episode {ol} - [4F04] Marge twists her hands quickly. {ljs} - [4F04] Mrs. Van Houten's first name, Luanne, is mentioned

Freeze frame fun

House of Pancakes signs

       HOUSE of                   SPRINGFIELD
       PANCAKES                  INVESTORETTES
                                    9:00 AM

Mexican wrestler poster


       [masked wrestler
        wearing a cape]

     El Coliseo de Tijuana
       SABADO  9:00 P.M.

The Investorettes check {jsh}

                      Bank of Springfield                0003

   Springfield Investorettes                     _12-01-1996_
   P.O. Box 182
   Springfield, USA

   Pay to
   the order of _Marge_Simpson______________________ $ 500.00

   ___Five_hundred_and_xx/100------------------------ Dollars

   __for_buy-out_____                     ____Helen_Lovejoy__

   [Marge's thumb] 22200 3559 095

At the Franchise Expo

    F R A N C H I S E   E X P O

Picture Perfect booth

                  P  I  C  T  U  R  E
                  P  E  R  F  E  C  T

       [tilted picture          [straight picture
       of a sad clown]         of a smiling clown]

           BEFORE                     AFTER

Disco Stu's seminar sign

          DISCO STU'S

Pretzel Wagon flyer {bjr}

        H O T

      [picture of
      a delicious


Pretzel Wagon coupons

   F R E E   P R E T Z E L
        * Pretzel *
        *  Wagon  *

The average redneck family {ddg}

   - Tiffany, Heather, Cody, Dylan, Dermot, Jordan, Taylor, Brittany,
     Wesley, Rumor [spelled "Rumer" in captions], Scout, Cassidy, Zoe
     ("Zo"), Chloe ("Clo"), Max, Hunter, Kendall, Caitlin, Noah, Sascha,
     Morgan, Kyra, Ian ("Ee-an"), Lauren, Q-bert, Phil

Baseball stadium

       Springfield War
      Memorial  Stadium


Jeering Burns at the game {jh}

   - Crazy Old Man, Carl, Ruth Powers, Dr. Hibbert, Mr. Largo

Pretzel Wagon video

    P r e t z e l
             W a g o n

    [picture of Frank
     holding a pretzel,
     surrounded by a
     giant pretzel]

    -- FRANK ORMAND --
    --   Founder    --

Things on the lawn at Frank's house {jsh}

   - Reindeer
   - Snowman
   - Pig
   - Well
   - Sunflower Pinwheel
   - Bird with windmilling arms
   - Flamingo
   - Doghouse
   - Wind-driven mobile featuring two men sawing a log
   - Sundial
   - "Duck Crossing" sign with ducks
   - Squirrel on roof
   - Rooster weathervane
   - Statue of a guy who looks like a jockey

At Luigi's

      L u i g i ' s

       - Italian -


- Overseas Animation: Anivision  {ddg}

Animation, continuity, and other goofs

* Shouldn't Marge be entitled to a share of the Investorettes' profits generated between the time she joined, and the time she left? {bjr} * Lisa had a corn dog on her plate. {eh} = At first, all of Investo's six blinking lights are red; later, two of them turn green. {dk} = The man at the "Picture Perfect" seminar gets the gloves, can and booklet out of thin air. {ol} - On the Picture Perfect pamphlet, the picture is tilted counter- clockwise, so the arrows should be pointing clockwise, not the other way around. {ljs} = When Marge sits down to watch the representative of crooked paintings, she is cramped in the front row; yet when she gets up, there's enough room for her ex-business partners to stand side-by-side. {dk} - When Frank Ormand gives Marge a pretzel, it's brown on the inside; pretzels are white on the inside. {ddg} = A bitten pretzel magically appears in the water jar at the Pretzel Wagon in the convention. * Where did Homer get that car for the parade? {ol} * Why doesn't Marge think to sell her pretzels to bars -- especially Moe's -- where pretzels are usually found? + Homer said in 2F33 that Mindy was fired, yet she's in the crowd at the plant. = Cletus pulls the 130 coupons out of nowhere. {bm} = The "Pretzel Wagon" logo dissappears from Marge's car door on many occasions. {dk} = Lisa takes a bite of her pretzel and then it disappears. {ol} * Marge's check would put this episode into winter, a rather cold season to play baseball. - The van starts without Mr. Burns even paying attention, or making a move at all. {ljs} = In Act II, when Marge was at the table, her arm changes in size and shape during the close-up. {dga} = The butter Marge puts her face in changes positions to somewhere Marge couldn't have possibly reached with her face. Besides, by sliding her arms on the table, she would be pushing the butter away were it under her face. {dk} * When a pair of hands was shown in the musical segment rolling the pretzel dough, they were using their palms, not their fingers, which is the correct way. {dk} = The big pretzel on top of the car is supposed to be facing the side lengthwise, not the front, as shown in the musical segment. {dk} c The closed-captions showed lyrics to "Put a Lid on It" during the third act, but they weren't heard. - In Marge's car, the rightmost position on the gear shift is "R"; it should be either the lowest gear (either "L", "3", or (for a 4-speed automatic) "4") or "P". {ddg} [see comments for a lengthy explanation about this --ed] - When Marge's car is stopped by Fat Tony, the car's speedometer indicates otherwise. {hl} = The Investorettes disappear during the fight between the mafia and the Yakuza. {ol}


Dale G. Abersold: A mixed episode, to say the least. Some great gags (including most of Act III) along with some egregious continuity errors and ridiculous plot ideas. Improves upon repeated viewing. Jack Lemmon was fine in his guest appearance; it's just too bad his role wasn't bigger. (C+) Jennifer M. Blaske: If I could sum up this ep in a word, it would be "weak." Even before I realized Ms. Crittendon wrote it, I started thinking that it was like the Country Club episode. I am seriously starting to wonder if maybe a female writer can't capture the essence of The Simpsons correctly. And is it me, or has it been awhile since we've seen much of Bart or Lisa? (C-) Chris Courtois: This may be damning with faint praise but "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" was the best episode Jennifer Crittenden has written to date. That said, it still displayed her tendancy to emphasize gags over characterization. Interesting how she avoided her usual pitfall of jettisoning character for a gag by ignoring most of the regular characters (where were Bart and Lisa?) and giving one-dimensional joke characters like Cletus and Disco Stu longer scenes. At least a good number of the gags were amusing this time around, although some (the Cletus scene, Homer's Season Six level of stupidity) were truly wretched. (C+) Steve Frayne: It had a few moments, but it should have been much better. One would think that a franchise convention could be as funny as the Candy Industry Trade Show, but unfortunately it didn't even compare. The mafia was much better in Homer the Clown, and the ending was terrible. (D) Joshua Fruhlinger: Although I'm usually upbeat, I have to say that this episode was pretty lame. Most of the gags just didn't do it for me this week. The show became much funnier when the mafias (mafiae?) got involved, and the last act thus saved the ep. from "C" status. (B-) Don Del Grande: It was "ho hum, another episode" with the occasional good lines (Fat Tony taking care of the opposition, and, to a lesser extent (mainly because it was telegraphed), the pretzel throwing at the baseball game), but the ending left too many questions unanswered, not the least of which was "who won?" (B) Jonathan Haas: We got to know some of the more obscure female characters a little better. And I thought Helen Lovejoy's solution to their problem was downright hilarious: Marge is being supported by a gang, so they should get a better gang. More subtle is that they immediately assumed that the gang's attacks were coldly ordered by a vengeful Marge. Funny that they would believe Marge capable of such a thing. Some of the one-off jokes were delightful. The size of Cletus's family (and the names of some of his children) had me rolling on the floor. But there were a few things that bothered me. Homer asking the mob for a favor and not realizing that he'd have to give something in return just doesn't ring true. It reinforces the "Homer as total imbecile" that I've come to hate. Ditto his eagerness for the "pancakes in the mail." And Grandpa's brief appearance seemed pointless. Overall: a good solid episode with flaws. Not one of the greats, but enjoyable nonetheless. (B) Jason Hancock: Despite a few funny moments, this one just did not grab me. For one thing, I never did care for episodes centered on Marge. Also, the Cletus scene took way too long, the story was too slow at times, and the ending was too abrupt. (C) Ryan Johnson: The first two acts were mildly amusing, but as a whole the episode didn't work. The stereotypes were totally uncalled for, and they were not funny. All I've seen so far this season is different shades of mediodcrity. (C-) Ondre Lombard: Act One showcases a little of that "funny 'cause it's true" humor that we don't see anymore with the dead-on slam at phony franchises. But the plotline itself is in some ways boring and extremely flat. I assume Marge's depression over lost business was supposed to be an emotional scene, but just didn't cut it for me. The mob getting involved was a twist that just made the weak story even more unsatisfyingly outrageous. I enjoyed the fight scene at the end however, there was a good couch gag/blackboard and spots of good humor (not-including the totally useless scene with Cletus), but with a weak story and an abrupt ending that leaves many loose-ends untied (who won the mob war, what will become of the Pita and Pretzel busines...), it was a poor outing. The writers just don't do the most underappreciated character --Marge-- any justice. (C+) Keith Palmer: When you've hit the bottom, there's only one way to go. Crittenden avoids the bad characterisation of Lisa that helped to destroy her last two outings, and even achieves some funny moments, but is still far from producing a good episode with her mischaracterisation of the Springfield women. (C) Nate Patrin: OK, I was one of the only people to give the Springfield Files lower than a "C", and I think I'll be one of the only people to give the Pretzel episode higher than a "C". Sure, the plot was kinda strange and disconnected- but it was funny! The gags were pretty good, the dialogue wasn't inane, and only a couple jokes were of the "I saw that coming a mile away" variety. The Cletus scene was terrible, but other than that the story moved alright. Best of all, it didn't end with a musical number. Yeah, what ending there was seemed out of place and probably too late, but this isn't high cinema, it's TV. (albeit damn good TV.) (B-) Werner Peeters: The Pulp Fiction spoofs were great, the ending bizarre (just as in 3F23) but funny - the Japanese mob fighting the Italian one in the backyard of The Simpsons! Some of the minor characters had a pretty funny role as the members of the investment club, but somehow the episode could have done with a little more twistings or subplots. Now it's a bit too straightforward. (B) Damian Penny: This one had some of the funniest scenes I've seen on this show in a long time, especially the "mob war" at the end and the return of Disco Stu. I also liked the jabs at these franchise expos, and Skinner's Mom was hilarious. My only complaint was that it ended so abruptly, but still a great episode. (B+) Benjamin J. Robinson: The premise of Marge running her own business is good, but the episode itself is flat, and the Mob angle in the third act isn't especially funny. It's like watching a dress rehearsal of "The Simpsons." Also, the ending is resolves nothing, as if it were cut off in mid- (C) Matt Rose: A recent pattern holds true again. Two things: 1) Any episode that focuses strictly on Marge is doomed from the start and 2) Jennifer Crittenden wrote it. I thought the plot itself was fairly promising, but the way it was solved was downright lame. There wasn't much to laugh at, either. It doesn't appear that they were trying very hard. At least there wasn't some idiotic musical number. I rate this among the worst of the year. (D+) Nelson Seggley: Well, why don't we just declare the Simpsons sub-plot officially dead. There hasn't been a single one this season (barring the Happy-dude phone scame). Subplots are often what makes an episode tick. Sigh.... Otherwise, this was a pretty good episode. It seemed to run at an uneven keel. There were the occasional hilarious outbursts ("Children are so fat these days! Can't we make money off of that?") and the painfully stupid lines ("Copyright 1967? No matter how determined this cat was, it's been dead for years!"). Overall, I liked it. The robot was funny, the fleet-a-pita was funny, the pretzel guy's laugh was funny, and homer's obviously scripted pretzel remarks were funny. Still, I wish there was less dead time and more subplot. (B) Marge Starbrod-Simpson: Aside from a few good gags (e.g. the phony ticker tape parade ploy, Cletus' huge family), this was as mediocre as most of last season. I thought I was gonna fall asleep. If Marge needs to have an episode revolve around her, she deserves better. (C+) Yours Truly: There seems to be a curse looming over Marge-centered episodes these days... For once, though, we were not treated with a nagging Marge, but rather a human Marge, who will experience both success and failure. Unfortunately, this premise doesn't lead to a full episode by itself, and there was not much supporting material in there, beside a few jokes mostly built on mis-characterization. There were a few moments, but the whole brings a rather dim light on what this staff can write around Marge. (C+) AVERAGE GRADE: C+ (2.34) NIELSON RATING: ?

Comments and other observations

Writer Watch

Dale G. Abersold:  Jennifer Crittenden has been one of the more troubled
   writers to sign on with the Simpsons in recent seasons.  After a
   fairly strong debut with "And Maggie Makes Three" [2F10], Crittenden
   followed with the almost universally disliked "The PTA Disbands"
   [2F19] and "Scenes from the Class Struggle in Springfield" [3F11].
   Crittenden has also worked extensively for "Seinfeld."

Grumpy Old Guest Voices

Dale G. Abersold:  Jack Lemmon is (IMHO) America's greatest living
   actor.  His vast resume includes classics of comedy ("Some Like It
   Hot," "The Apartment," "The Odd Couple") and drama ("Missing," "The
   China Syndrome").  The many honors he has won include last year's
   Kennedy Center Honors, and Oscars for "Save the Tiger" and "Mister
   Roberts." ("Captain, it is I, Ensign Pulver, and I just threw your
   stinkin' palm tree overboard.")

Ay, es grande!

Joe Klemm:  Mexican wrestling is actually more interesting than the
   ladies think. It has the same basic skills as U.S. pro wrestling, but
   there are two main differences. First, most of the athletes in
   Mexican wrestling are high flyers. Second, wrestlers in Mexico
   usually wear masks, which is sacred in the sport. If you were
   watching the Royal Rumble last night, you would get an idea of what I
   am talking about.

Pity it's a pita

Marge Starbrod-Simpson:  Someone of Helen, Maude, Edna, and Luanne's
   genere should know what a pita is. That crap is pretty popular among
   women in that age group (guessing they're about the same age as
   Marge), especially those on a diet (or at least it was last year or
   the year before). In fact, there was a pita stand at a local craft
   show (with a line of mostly women in a front of it).

   (BTW, I tried one, and it was the worst thing I ever ate in my life.
   The shell was too grainy, and the filling tasted like something from
   a school cafeteria. Not to mention heartburn for three days...)

Car Watch

Benjamin J. Robinson:  For the faux parade, Homer drove a 1958 Cadillac;
   most likely an Eldorado, but the other model lines could also be had
   as a convertible. How Homer got the car (and how he talked Lisa into
   being "Space Girl") is left as an exercise to the reader.

   Monty Burns won a 1996 (not 1997, as the announcer claimed) Pontiac
   TransSport.  There is something called an Astro van, but it's a
   mechanically unrelated minivan made by Chevrolet.

The Hazards of Merchandising

Benjamin J. Robinson:  Although Marge owed Cletus three hundred
   pretzels, she may have gotten off easy.  One hapless Oldsmobile
   dealership ran a $300 (or so) off coupon in the local telephone book.
   Like Marge, they forgot to put in the "one coupon to a customer"
   blurb.  An enterprising lady persuaded her friends to clip the
   coupons, and give them to her.  She got enough to cover the cost of
   the car she wanted, and turned them in to the dealership.  They, of
   course, protested.  The case was headed to course when I heard about
   it, and I don't know how, or if, it was resolved.  Wonder if that's
   where Cletus got the idea....

Some kids'll never lose a toe...

Joshua Fruhlinger:  The joke here, it seems to me, is that Cletus' kids
   all have yuppie names.  Some of them are specifically the names of
   children of famous people, or of famous children.  Some examples that
   I noticed, culled from Don Del Grande's list:

   - Cody and Cassidy (children of Frank and Kathie Lee Gifford)
   - Rumor, Scout (children of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis)

   Zoe and Chloe ring a bell, too, but I can't think of anyone specific
   they're attached to.  I urge people to look at the list and see if
   they recognize any others.  It wouldn't suprise me if they were all
   someone's kids (except maybe Q-bert and Phil).

   [Michael Harris mentions that David Bowie has a daughter named Zoe,
   and it's been brought that Olivia Newton-John had a daughter named
   Chloe. John David Watker also point out that Kira is a character in
   Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.  --ed]

Videogame roots, Part II

Jason Hancock:  Q*Bert, the namesake of one of Cletus' kids, was a video
   game in the early 1980s which involved an orange Muppet-like creature
   jumping on cubes. The object of this game was to try to change all of
   the cubes to a destination color while avoiding other objects on the
   board, like balls and snakes; jumping on a flying disc would clear
   the board..  Like Donkey Kong, which was referenced in last week's
   "Springfield Files" (3G01), it would also spawn a short-lived
   Saturday morning cartoon on CBS.

Kill Whitey?

Nate Patrin:  The namesake of the "Whitey Whacker", Whitey Ford pitched
   for the New York Yankees from 1950 to 1967, winning 236 games and
   losing 106, with 1,956 career strikeouts and a 2.75 ERA. He also
   holds the records for most World Series wins, losses, games pitched,
   and pretty much everything else having to do with the Fall Classic,
   winning the World Series MVP award and the CY Young award in 1961. He
   led the league in wins three times, ERA and shutouts twice. He was
   elected to the Hall of Fame in 1974. All that, and he still winds up
   with massive pretzel-induced head injuries... tragic.

Hit Parade

Benjamin J. Robinson:  No fewer than three pop songs made the cut for
   this episode.  "Do the Hustle" (I don't know who sings this) played
   at Disco Stu's franchise booth.  The Pointer Sisters' "New Attitude"
   heralded the Investorettes' addition to the Fleet-A-Pita family. When
   they arrived at the plant, they were playing Fleetwood Mac's "Don't
   Stop (Thinkin' About Tomorrow)."  Bill Clinton (or his campaign
   manager) made this last song the theme of his 1992 Presidential

The silent melody

   The lyrics displayed in closed captioning during the musical montage
   are from the song "Put a Lid on it", on Squirrel Nut Zippers' recent
   album "Hot". Laura Canon notes that this group was virtually unknown
   when this episode first aired, but it is now riding on the success
   of their current hit, "Hell".

   John Plasket provides us with the chorus' lyrics:

   Put a lid on it  (What's that you say?)
   Put a lid on it  (Oh man, no way)
   Put a lid down on it and everything will be alright
   Put a lid on it  (Don't hand me that)
   Put a lid on it  (I'm alright, Jack)
   Put a lid down on it before somebody starts a fight

Unless it comes from a country which doesn't exist anymore...

Brendan P. Dunn:  In every car I've ever seen, manual or automatic, 1 is
   the lowest gear.  Thus an automatic transmission generally has one of
   the following layouts:

         P R N D 2 1
         P R N D 2 L
         P R N D 2
         P R N D L

   (some also have D4 or D3 or some other variant to separate the
   "drive" gear into a setting with or without overdrive)

   In all the automatic cars I've seen with the shift lever mounted on
   the steering wheel shaft, P has been on the left.  I've never seen 3
   or 4 used on an automatic, except as a subscript to the letter D, and
   never to indicate the lowest gear.

   Finally, I have seen a few older cars with a manual transmission
   mounted on the steering wheel shaft.  One I saw read:

   R N 1 2 3

   In this case, 3 is the highest, not lowest gear.  The order of the
   gears is reversed from the automatic case, because in an automatic
   you generally want to shift from park or neutral directly into the
   position that allows the normal range of driving gears.  In a manual,
   you obviously want to go from neutral directly into first gear.

   I've never seen this, but if there are variants of the automatic
   starting with P on the right, I see no reason to assume that there
   couldn't be variants of the manual transmission described above with
   R on the right.

   How's that for a long explanation of a really minor point?

Those Immortal Threads

Where is Springfield?

Dale G. Abersold:  Presumably not in Oklahoma or New York (both states
   referred to).

Loose Ends

Elson Trinidad:  What is Marcia, er, I mean, Edna Krabappel doing out of
   the classroom?  This episode must have taken place during the summer;
   the kids aren't in school, and when Marge drives out to the desert
   and is told to pay up Fat Tony "In 12 Hours" (6:00 a.m.) the sky is
   reasonably bright outside (at 6:00 p.m.).

James R. Curry:  If this is the case, what is Principal Skinner doing at
   school?  And if he was there outside of term time, then shouldn't
   Marge have noticed that he was ordering lunch for a school of
   children who weren't present?

Quotes and Scene Summary {ol}

At the Municipal House of Pancakes, a meeting is held for the Springfield Investorettes, composed of Maude Flanders, Luanne Van Houten, Agnes Skinner, Helen Lovejoy, Edna Krabappel and Marge. They say the pancakes here stink. -- Agnes Skinner at the Municipal House of Pancakes, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Helen has a chart set up while explaining how their shares in Dynaflux Unimatics are up a "delicious seven and three quarters," meaning their investment club portfolio has nearly doubled in value. Helen's suggestion: use their profits to invest into high-risk ventures. Edna: Oh! Oh! How about Oklasoft? It's Oklahoma's fastest-growing software company. Maude: Um, cushions? Everybody likes to sit on cushions. Agnes: Children are so fat today. [pounds her fist on the table] Isn't there some way we could make money off that? -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Helen points out that a franchise fair is held that weekend, and proposes to buy a business. Everybody murmurs in agreement, but Marge is reticent to the idea. I'm not wild about these high-risk ventures. They sound a little risky. -- Marge's views on business, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Everybody glares at her, complaining about how she always objects to risky investments, yet getting her share of the profits. Helen: All in favor of expelling Marge from the Investorettes? All: [raising hands] Aye! Marge: [gets up] All right, Helen. If I'm not wanted I'll leave. Helen: You'll get your pancakes in the mail. -- Better not invest in mayo then, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" At the dinner table, Marge glumly explains what took place that morning at the pancake house. Marge: [sighs] ...and then they gave me back my $500 investment and kicked me out of the club. Homer: Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Back up a bit now. When are the pancakes coming in the mail? Marge: Well, maybe it's all for the best. Homer: What do you need to make money for, anyway? As long as I have my earning power, this family's got nothing to worry about. [stabs his eye with a hot dog] Oww! Ohh! Call work and tell 'em I won't be in tomorrow. -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Listening to Lisa's advice to "roll the dice", Marge decides to beat those girls at their own game, and buy her own franchise. The next weekend at the Franchise Expo, visitors are greeted by a wiggling robot, holding money bags in its arms and standing in front of the entrance. Robot: Greetings, humans. I am Investo the robot, from the planet Opportuniac. My superior brain advises you to enter the Franchise Fair. Marge: Well, we're trying to but you're blocking our way. Robot: Danger! Danger! Don't forget to pick up pamphlets. Bart: I'll handle this. [pours his cola into the robot's vents] [the robot writhes and collapses on the floor] [Bart whistles and walks around it, followed by the family] Robot: [in a distorted voice] Help. Help. Help. Security code 30. -- That'll teach all of ya robots, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The family walks to what seems to be the hosting show of the expo. Royce: That's the miracle of the franchise. You get all the equipment and know-how you need, plus a familiar brand-name people trust. You'll be on a rocket-ride to the moon! And while you're there, would you pick up some of that nice, green moon money for me -- Royce McCutcheon! Homer: No deal, McCutcheon, that moon money is mine! -- Make moon money fast!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Marge goes to the "Picture Perfect" seminar. Host: Now, folks, I don't wanna alarm ya, but scientists say forty percent of America's pictures... are hanging crooked. [the audience gasp in shock] Yep, it's true. And I hear you asking: "Well, who's gonna straighten out all these artistic abominations?" Your friends? A neighbor? Those fat cats at Washington? [chuckles] Good luck. Hey, you know, maybe no one'll notice! Maybe the problem with ju-u-u-st fix itself. Marge: Now you're the one who's being naive. Man: Okay. Fair enough. But you sound like you're ready to become your own boss in the exciting world of frame-nudging! Yes, for a minimal franchise fee, you'll receive a pair of straightening gloves, a cannister of wall lubricant and a booklet of the most commonly asked questions you will hear, including: "Who are you?" and "What are you doing here?" -- Wow... frame-nudging!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Marge realizes she doesn't have any desire to own a business, and wonders what she's doing there in the first place. As she turns around, she comes face to face with her former business partners. Marge: Hello, Helen. Helen: Marge. Marge: Edna. Edna: Marge. Marge: Uh... [Agnes glares] Hmm... Agnes: [irritated] Oh, my name is Agnes and you know it's Agnes! It means lamb -- lamb of God. Marge: I'm sorry, Agnes. Agnes: Marge. [the Investorettes walk away] -- The greatest confrontation ever seen, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Driven by anger and revenge, Marge turns back right away in search of the right business. Meanwhile, at Disco Stu's "Can't Stop the Learnin' Disco Academies"... Disco Stu: [making indescribable body motions] Did you know that disco record sales were up 400/ for the year ending 1976? If these trends continue... A-y-y-y! [kicks his feet up on his desk wearing see-through platforms with water and fish inside] Homer: Uh, your fish are dead. Disco Stu: Yeah, I know. I... can't get them out of there. -- See you in the last decade, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The Investorettes visit the Fleet-A-Pita franchise. Helen: Hmm, Pita. Well, I don't know about food from the Middle East. Isn't that whole area a little iffy? Hostess: [laughs] Hey, I'm no geographer. You and I -- why don't we call it pocket bread, huh? Maude: [reading the ingredients list] Umm, what's tahini? Hostess: Flavor sauce. Edna: And falafel? Hostess: Crunch patties. Helen: So, we'd be selling foreign... Hostess: Specialty foods. Here, try a Ben Franklin. Helen: [takes a bite] Mmm, that is good. What's in it? Chef: [poking his head out of a window, looking of Indian origin] Tabbouleh and rezmi-kabob. Hostess: [trying to cover-up] Uh, th-that's our chef... Christopher. Chef: [mutters, and closes the window, cursing in Hindi] -- You guys aren't from around here, are you?, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The girls gather around and start eating pitas, looking ready to buy the franchise. Nearby, Marge glooms. Look at them! They've jumped on the one franchise I might possibly have considered thinking about becoming interested in. -- Oh, that's a downer, Marge, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Marge concludes she simply isn't cut out for the world of business. Next to her, the owner of the Pretzel Wagon booth observes that she sounds like "the old me, which was ironically, the young me." Marge walks in, somehow sympathizing with him. The man tells that he was once like Marge and the others, "lost in a sea of flashy gimmicks and empty promises", until "God tossed me a life preserver. A tasty, golden brown life preserver." He flashes a pretzel, and offers it to Marge. Marge: Hmm! It's not bad! Frank: It's not only not bad -- it's not bread. "Knot bread", you get it? [chuckles] See? Marge: [laughing] I do! [they both laugh] Marge: Knot bread! -- The usual pretzel-people jokes, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Their laughter is interrupted by a bugle playing a fanfare. Hostess: Let's hear it for the newest members of the Fleet-A-Pita franchise! [Patti LaBelle's "New Attitude" plays, as the members walk through a Fleet-A-Pita paper wall] Maude! Helen! Agnes! Luanne! Edna! Bart! Bart: Whoo! We're number one! We're number one! [a guard grabs his collar and drags him along] Bart: Hey, what's going on? [protesting] Wait, wait, hey... -- Bart gets dragged away from a club he doesn't belong in, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" After this last straw, Marge inquires about the cost of a pretzel franchise. The answer is coincidentally $500, which she produces right away. Frank: Congratulations, and welcome to the dynamic world of mobile pretzel retailing. Marge: When can I start? Where's my territory? Frank: Your... territory. Well, lemme tell ya. Wherever a young mother is ignorant of what to feed her baby, you'll be there. Wherever nacho penetration is less than total, you'll be there. Wherever a Bavarian is not quite full, you will be there. Marge: Don't forget fat people. They can't stop eating! Homer: [passing by the stand] Hey, pretzels! -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" [End of Act One. Time: 7:00] Back in her kitchen, Marge pops a "Pretzel Wagon" videocassette guide in a VCR. What we see is a bland office, while Frank sets up his camera. He then walks to his desk, fumbles through some papers, and performs the overused "I didn't hear you coming" act -- miserably. Hello. I'm Frank Ormand, and if you're watching me, that means you've got pretzel fever -- and not the kind that attacked my intestinal lining some years back. [starts a sickening laughter] So let's get your franchise up and running. -- America's funniest pretzel videos, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The family gets in on Marge's business as they follow Frank's instructions. "Start by setting up an office in your basement or garage" is the first direction; Marge sets up the (again) cliche "Hang in there, baby!" poster with a cat hanging from a clothes-line. "An automatic garage door opener makes you feel like you're working in a futuristic wonderworld." Homer puts the door to use by stutting it down in front of Ned. "Next, blanket your community with flyers. A phony ticker-tape parade will help you avoid littering laws." Bart and Marge take care of the pamphlets, while Homer rides in the streets with Lisa in the back seat, wearing some crazy Martian helmet. The whole town cheers. Welcome back, space girl! [wipes a tear] -- Chief Wiggum's emotional cry, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The video continues... Frank: Now you're ready to make pretzels. Open your bag of ingredients... [does so, to find bugs inside] Urgh. Check for -- millipedes. Erghh. -- Less millipedes and your intestinal lining might've remained okay, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Hours later, the kitchen is a total mess, and on the center table lies a batch of pretzels. Bart and Lisa anxiously watch Homer, who's wearing his safety hat and badge from work with "Official Pretzel Inspector" written on it, checking a pretzel with a micrometer. The inspector gives his approval, and the kids exchange high-fours. The first target of the new Pretzel Wagon is the power plant; when Marge honks outside, Homer paves the way for pretzel madness. Homer: Hey, what's all that commotion outside? Why, it's one of those pretzel wagons the movie stars are always talking about. Lenny: [gasps] Here? Our plant? Homer: That's right, Lenny. Let's all give in to deliciousness -- the Pretzel Wagon way! [everybody cheers] Homer: [among the commotion] Yeah! Homer's right! -- The perfect setup, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The whole plant rushes out to get pretzels, and Lisa rejoices at the sight of so many potent customers. Once Marge has reminded everyone to put on their hairnets, they're all set for their first transaction. Marge: Welcome to Pretzel Wagon. May I take your order? Lenny: [hesitating] Uh, let's see. I'll have... one, uh... Carl: Hey, hurry up. I wanna get my pretzel. Lenny: One pretzel. Marge: Thank you. Carl: [now in front of the line] Uh, let's see, um... I will have one of your, uh... Burns: Come on, come on, while we're young. -- We are?!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Carl's hesitation is put to a halt by a nearby honking, that of the Fleet-A-Pita van which pulls up in the plant's parking lot. Lenny: Wow, check out that van! It looks like it doesn't even need out business. Carl: Hey, let's go! -- Looks like your average customer to me, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Soon enough, the pretzel line becomes the pita line, much to Marge's dismay. She goes to have a talk to her competitors. Marge: Excuse me. I had this spot first. Edna: Sorry dear, just business. Ha! Marge: Well, I guess Macy's and Gimbels learned to live side by side. Agnes: Gimbels is gone, Marge, long gone. You're Gimbels. -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Figuring the power plant isn't the only good location in town, Marge decides to literally take her business elsewhere. Along one of their runs, the Pretzel Wagon drives by Cletus' house. Cletus: [waving] Hey slow down! I wants to talk to you! [Homer stops the car] Cletus: Give us three hundred pretzels. Marge: [to Homer] You see? A little persistence and patience paid off! [to Cletus] That'll be three hundred dollars. Cletus: Hey I don't think so. I got me three hundred coupons. [Cletus hands an armful of coupons to Marge] Marge: [growls] I should've said "Limit: one per customer." Cletus: Should'a but didn't so hand 'em over. Hey! Kids! We're eatin' dinner tonight! -- Learning business the hard way, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Cletus then yells for his kids as they walk one by one out of his shack, and puts on a huge smile afterwards. Marge lets out a depressed growl. Back in her garage-office, Marge needs a serious confidence boost. Marge: [reading the poster] "Hang in there, baby!" You said it, kitty. [looking more closely] "Copryright 1968." Hmm, determined or not, that cat must be long dead. That's kind of a downer. -- That's one depressing way of looking at a citations dictionary, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Lisa walks in, and tells Marge to think big, and set up her business at a major public event. Marge's choice lays on the Springfield War Memorial baseball Stadium, where she holds Free Pretzel Day. Marge: Here you go! Free Pretzel Wagon pretzels for everyone. One bite and you'll be hooked! Skinner: [takes one] Thank you! Pedro: [takes one] Gracias! Homer: [whispering] That means "thank you," Marge! -- Your own pocket dictionary, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Just as everyone is slowly about to munch in those delicious pretzels (oh, the suspense!), the announcer reveals the winner's name of today's giveaway. The 1997 Pontiac Astrowagon goes to the fan in seat 0001 -- C. Montgomery Burns. No one's happy about this but Mr. Burns and Smithers, and Mr. Burns hops in his new car, which is pelted by the pretzels thrown by the angry, booing crowd. Announcer #1: And here come the pretzels! Marge: Oh, no! No, don't do that! You're suppose to be tasting them! Announcer #2: Hall of Famer Whitey Ford now on the field pleading with the crowd for... for some kind of sanity. Announcer #1: Uh-oh, and a barrage of pretzels now knocking Whitey unconscious. Announcer #2: Wow. This is uh... This is a black day for baseball. -- Remembered throughout history, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" In the kitchen, Bart and Homer try to cheer up a much depressed Marge. Bart: Cheer up, Mom. You can't buy publicity like that. Thousands and thousands of people saw your pretzels injuring Whitey Ford! Homer: You could call them Whitey-Whackers. -- Buy one and get a chance to knock Whitey yourself!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" But they don't succeed, and Marge sinks into self-depreciation -- and butter. Homer can't stand to see his wife like this. Marge needs help... and God knows I'm not the man to provide it. But I know who can. -- Ah, that's close enough, Homer, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Homer floors it and drives to Frank Ormand's dreamy, candyland-style house. "It looks like Mr. Pretzel-Man is doing pretty well for himself" comments Homer, before ringing to the door. A woman in black answers. Homer: I'm here to see Mr. Ormand. Woman: Of course. Right this way. [in the living room is held Ormand's funerals] Homer: Oh, I guess I should speak to the executor of his estate. Woman: [whispering] He's right over there. [points to another coffin] They were in the same car. -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" As many have done before, Homer seeks for his last hope at church. Homer: I've never reached to you before but my wife is in her hour of need. Your help could make all the difference in the world. Tony: Okay. Louie: See boss? I told you that as in the church bulletin would pay off. -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" [End of Act Two. Time: 13:41] The following morning, at 5:30am, Marge answers the phone, still sleepy. Marge: No. Pretzel Wagon's no longer... 300 pretzels?! Wait! Wait! Let me get this down. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. Meat Packer's Union Hall, Batavia, New York. I'll send them right out! -- Don't you smell a fish?, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" She wakes up Homer, who fakes the surprise when hearing that she's back in business. Out on the streets, Fat Tony and his boys are busy eliminating competition by destroying Hans Moleman's Hot Dog cart and the buns therein. Meanwhile, Marge is counting money and making more and more pretzels. The orders keep coming in. Legs is at Luigi's, destroying Luigi's pizzas. Fat Tony's mob has ordered girl scouts (at gunpoint) outside the county line. Marge, meantime, is getting rich. Marge answers a choiceless order for pretzels by Principal Skinner for the Springfield Elementary cafeteria. Marge: Are you sure the children will get enough nutrition from these pretzels? Skinner: [robotic tone] Yes, I am sure. Sure as sure can be. [uses his injured right hand to give Marge her money] Marge: Oh my god. What happened to your fingers? Thug: [from inside the room] Boating accident... Skinner: I believe it was a boking accident. [from behind, a targeting beam aims for his head] I have to go now. -- Can't get enough of those gulp yummy pretzels, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Helen is angrily asking the police why the boat isn't unloading the Fleet-a-Pita falafel fixins. Helen: I don't understand why they won't unload our falafel fixings. Lou: Ship's impounded, Ma'am. Wiggum: Yeah, we, uh, found a couple of barnacles on the hull; that and, uh, the deck was, uh, wet. -- Fear from the wet decks!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Helen: That's crazy! And what are those men doing under my van? [the men flee the van] Wiggum: Look, lady, if I was you, I would just leap into the air as I am preparing to do. [they both leap and the van explodes] -- Pretzel Wagon's business is, uh, exploding, "The Twisted Tales of Marge Simpson" That night at Moe's, Homer pays his beer with a fifty, and goes to the washroom to wash his hands. Tony: [clearing his throat] Greetings, Homer. Homer: Hey! Fat Tony! You still with the mafia? [walks away] Tony: Uh... Uh, yes, I am. [holds him back] Thank you for asking. Now, Homer, as you no doubt recall, you were done a favor by our, uh, how shall I say -- Mafia Crime Syndicate. Homer: Oh, yeah... Tony: Now the time has come for you to do us a favor. Homer: [shocked] You mean the mob only did me a favor to get something in return? Oh, Fat Tony! I will say good day to you, sir! [folds his arms in disgust] -- What's the world coming to?, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Tony leaves, then realizes. Later, Marge does another delivery -- down an uninhabited desert road. She consults her map. Well, here I am -- 11905 Dead Weasel Road. I don't see any apartment building. -- You SURE you don't smell a fish, Marge?, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" At that point, her car gets knocked off the road by Fat Tony's limo. Marge: Hey! Wh-what's going on?! [Fat Tony walks to the car, and tries to take the keys -- but they won't come off] Tony: Is, uh, there a button or a release for these keys? Marge: Oh. Oh, you have to push in as you turn. Tony: Ah. [does so] Marge: Yeah, that's it. -- Cooperative key tips, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Fat Tony introduces himself as a business partner, and claims he is intitled to a part of Marge's profits -- just around 100%. You have 24 hours to give us our money. And to show you we're serious... you have 12 hours. -- Mafia practices, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Marge immediately sees Homer about the mess made. Marge: Homer! Did you tell the mafia they could eliminate my competitors with savage beatings and attempted murder? Homer: [swallowing beer] In those words? ... Yes. -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" I saw your pouring your heart and soul into this business and getting nowhere. I saw you desperately trying to cram one more salty treat into America's already bloated snack hole. So I did what I could. I did what any loving husband would do! I reached out to some violent mobsters. -- Loving husbands like Homer, unite!, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Marge appreciates the gesture, but refuses to share her own profits with the mafia. Homer inquires about what they can do. "We're going to do what we do everyday. We're going to make pretzels!" Marge replies. The next morning, Marge attempts to carry on with her business while Homer looks out the kitchen window for trouble. She salts the last pretzel, and they stare at the clock like nervous wrecks. The door knocks, and they yell. Grampa: [in boxers] I had that dream again... Homer: Oh, thank God, it's only Grampa. [slams door] -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The door knocks again. This time, it ain't Grampa. Tony: Sorry we're late. Could we have the money now? Marge: The answer -- is no. Tony: I'm afraid I must insist. You see, my wife, she has been most vocal on the subject of the pretzel monies. "Where's the money?" "When are you going to get the money?" "Why aren't you getting the money now?" And so on. -- Kind of like a broken record of the Macarena, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The answer is still no, and Marge and Homer brace themselves for the consequences when the scene is interrupted by the angry Investorettes. Edna: Well, well, if it isn't Marge Simpson and her gangland cronies. Maude: Your goon squads certainly gave you the edge in the mobile snack business. But I'm afraid we've outdone you once again. Hiroshi, Yukio... [steps aside to reveal a group of armed Japanese] Perhaps you've heard of the Yakuza -- the Poison Fists of the Pacific Rim -- the Japanese mafia. Agnes: They'll kill ya five times before you hit the ground! -- "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" The two groups step forward, and soon the Simpsons field is the theater of punches and flying ninja stars. Marge: Homie, maybe we should go inside. Homer: But, Marge, that little guy hasn't done anything yet. Look at him. [the man in white suit stands still amidst the fight] He's going to do something and you know it's going to be good. [Marge pulls him back into the house and shuts the door] [inside, a loud ninja yell can be heard, followed by a thump] Homer: Aw... -- Your very own Jackie Chan, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" Bodies fly outside the kitchen window while Homer and Marge have coffee. Homer apologizes for failing to help, but Marge tells him she loves him for he always try to. Sleepy kids step into the kitchen. Lisa: [yawning] What's going on outside? Marge: Oh it's just a mob war. Go back to sleep, honey. [the "little guy" is tossed through the kitchen window] Man: [wiping glass from his suit and bowing] Forgive-a-ness, please! [runs out the backdoor to return to the fight] -- Bless that Yakuza, "The Twisted World of Marge Simpson" [End of Act Three. Time: 21:11]


{bjr} Benjamin J. Robinson {bm} Blaine Moller {ddg} Don Del Grande {dga} Dale G. Abersold {dk} Diego Kontarovsky {dp} Damian Penny {dp2} Dallas Pesola {eh} Eric Hartman {hl} Haynes Lee {jh} Jason Hancock {jmb} Jennifer M. Blaske {jsh} Jonathan S. Haas {ljs} Liam J. Scanlan {mr} Matt Rose {mss} Marge Starbrod-Simpson {np} Nathan Patrin {ol} Ondre Lombard

Legal Mumbo Jumbo

This episode capsule is Copyright 1997 Frederic Briere. It is not to be redistributed in a public forum without consent from its author or current maintainer (capsules@snpp.com). All quoted material, episode summaries and 2-nanosecond "news updates" remain property of The Simpsons, Copyright of Twentieth Century Fox. The transcript itself is Copyright 1997 Ondre Lombard. Do not clean with alcohol, benzene or any other solvent. This work is dedicated to Raymond Chen, James A. Cherry, Ricardo Lafaurie, and all of those who made episode capsules what they are today. Many well-deserved cheers and thanks to Dave "intemporal" Hall, who provided me with alt.tv.simpsons archives over the past months. This capsule wouldn't be nearly as complete without his invaluable help.