The Simpsons: Cue Detective Review

Homer gets burned and not by Burns. Who would watch such a one sided farce? Here's our review of The Simpsons season 27, episode 2.

SPOLER ALERT: This The Simpsons review was edited to be dramatic.

The Simpsons: Season 27 Episode 2.

The Simpsons have gone nihilistic in “Cue Detective.” We knew they gave up last week when they opened with yet another barely warmed over false breakup but this week they embrace it and offer up a pretty fairly middling episode that is the death of hope but has some real laughs. The laughs aren’t forced, of course, because The Simpsons have given up. They are done trying. Happiness is an illusion. No one’s telling them to care, just trip a nationwide audience of strangers.

Matthew McConaughey’s nihilism is really the only thing The Simpsons take from True Detective, except that Bart and Lisa are on the trail of the meteor cooker, but it’s what gives the episode its flavor. To try is to fail. It is very Zen, which is basically giving up in yoga pants, as Lisa says after acknowledging that it feels good to surrender. The Simpsons are a family of quitters, who would back down at the first sign of resistance. Unlike Lance Armstrong, who didn’t quit the Tour de France, never quit lying about his steroid use and still hasn’t come clean. The Simpsons often reinvigorate themselves on the blood of other shows often, and dead meat never lies.

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The Stinksons lose their popularity because of the family moldy personal hygiene, which has been called into question before. Homer’s brother had to bully his autoworking executives into grading Homer’s natural musk as above reproach. It all starts when Bart and Lisa smell worse than the boring animals in the low point of Anthony Newley’s career, Dr. Doolittle. The kids take a swipe at Fox by even booing the 20th Century Fox logo in Principal Skinner’s favorite old movie.

There are some refried gags. Marge keeps the money she steals from Homer’s pants in the innards of Bender, the robot from Futurama who is in suspended animation waiting for the future that will one day be his present. So, they’re sticking to that recurring basement debris gag like it was the old ugly head of senor Xtapolapocetl. Santa’s Little Helper descends to a new level of stupidity and Nelson is revealed as a grinder in Clash of Castles.

Food is funny, especially on The Simpsons. Homer has been called a gourmand, at least in France where that translates to fat pig. He has achieved universal knowledge from the acidic sting of hot pepper chili. This time, Marge even joins him as she finally understands gluttony and becomes as American as apple pie with yellow cheese, which is what Travis Bickle ordered in Taxi Driver. In tonight’s episode, Homer reclaims his post as the host who can boast the most roast and the show is better for it. Sure, it’s old ground, but it’s ground round and still beats another week of Marge being tempted to look for new meat. She’s quite the enabler tonight and I’m glad we have her back.

It is truly heartwarming to hear that Homer makes all his selfish choices for Marge. Yes, the family smells worse than a Grandpa hug in the summer, but Marge is quite fetching the wedding dress she found in the attic. She really comes through, beating down the Chew Network’s New York City celebrity chef Scotty Boom with nothing but spices on a rent a rack and his public disgrace. And it’s all because of barbecue, the answer to all of life’s problems. Because nothing fixes bad times like good food.

“Cue Detective” was a large step up from last week, but that was a small bar and, as we learned tonight, everything good the universe gives us, it takes away. At least until after the waterless flood, when the aliens take back what has always been theirs.

“Cue Detective” was written by Joel H. Cohen and directed by Timothy Bailey. The Simpsons stars Dan Castellaneta as Homer Simpson, Julie Kavner as Marge Simpson, Pattie and Selma Bouvier, Nancy Cartwright as Bart Simpson, Yeardley Smith as Lisa Simpson. Hank Azaria plays Chief Wiggum and Moe Szysla. Harry Shearer is Ned Flanders. Guest stars: Alton Brown as himself, Ben Schwartz as Clerk, Bobby Moynihan as Tyler Boom, Edward James Olmos as Pit Master.

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But It All Went By So Fast: Exit 11 Appliances: Do not read our Yelp reviews. New Career Idea? Erotic photographer. Stan Getz saxophone polish. Homer gets blown away by a leaf-blower.  Nutter Butter’s natural peanut butter. The Raw Barn: Most Quinoa Now Weevil-Free. Acai Berry Nature’s Superfood. Goji Berry Nature’s Superfood. Scrap City: Proud sponsor of the Springfield Jewish Hockey League. Scram Off Scrappers. Sudsmaser. Nelson marries Shauna. The closing theme was the True Detective theme for season 2.


3 out of 5