I don't mind the massive continuity errors that this episode introduces to the series. Even though it isn't really "continuity errors" so much as "ripping up the past continuity that has been established over many episodes and crapping on the remains." But you know, it's just a television show. I can let that kind of thing go. I'm sure many fans can't, and will give this episode a thumbs down just on that basis.
The trope that "mom wants another baby and dad flies into a tizzy" is a well-worn staple of sitcoms. In fact, it's so common that I could have sworn The Simpsons had done it in the past. But I guess not. I guess I must have been thinking of the thousands of other "mom wants another baby" episodes.
As a rule, I am positively predisposed toward the Treehouse of Horror episodes. For one thing, Halloween is my favorite holiday. And for another thing, the Treehouse episodes let the writers cut loose and take bizarre flights of fancy, which is always fun. Plus the structure means that no single story is going to drag out for very long and risk outwearing its welcome.
What a dismaying choice for a season premiere. This episode touches briefly on several different themes and tropes, but fails to grapple with any of them in a meaningful way. The result feels more like five or six different partial episodes stitched together.
Last night's rerun of "Lisa Goes Gaga" gave me time to reflect on how daring this episode really was. The first time I watched it, I was too distracted by Lady Gaga to really focus on what was happening in the plot. On a second watching, Lisa Simpson proves to be much more hateable than you might expect for such a beloved television character.
The new season of The Simpsons starts soon, on the same premiere night as several other Animation Domination shows. September 30 is going to be a big night for prime time animation fans! Fox will be airing new episodes of The Simpsons, Family Guy, and American Dad. (Bob's Burgers premieres this Sunday, September 23. The Cleveland Show won't return until October 7.)
About a year ago, FOX released a Simpsons themed freemium iPad/iPhone game. It was so popular that it crushed the gameplay servers, and they were forced to withdraw it until they could bring things back up to speed. Apparently they have decided that the time is now, because during last night's Animation Domination block, they aired at least one ad for the game. (Possibly just the one, given its popularity - I certainly did not see others, but I was watching inattentively.)
Bloomberg News is reporting that the USPS was stuck with a whopping 682 million Simpsons postage stamps that went unsold. Evidently the USPS grossly misjudged how much the American public wanted to buy Simpsons stamps, and printed up twice as many Simpsons stamps as they did Elvis Presley stamps.
It also mashes together Lady Gaga and Lisa Simpson in a way I would not have expected. Lisa is a smart kid, a feminist, out of touch with pop culture, and a staunch vegetarian. But the episode didn't leverage a single one of those traits. How can you have someone stand in the Simpsons' foyer literally covered in meat, without even a passing comment by vegetarian Lisa? I don't know, but they did it.