8 Classic Episodes from The Simpsons, season 4 (and 14 memorable ones!)
For me, the fourth season of The Simpsons is a "they can do no wrong" collection of episodes. I think all 22 episodes are great, but there are eight episodes that rise above the rest – and are, in my opinion, as good a sitcom episode as any show has ever made.
"A Streetcar Named Marge"
I love the "New Orleans" song, Jon Lovitz is excellent as the director, the way the art and the performance come together to create that Marlon Brando impression is collaborative genius… it’s a great episode.
So many memorable quotes, but I’ll just go with "Oo – they’re some quarters in here!"
"Treehouse of Horror III"
Any Simpsons Halloween is great, but "Dial "Z" for Zombie" might be my favorite short of them all.
"Show’s over, Shakespeare!"
"Itchy & Scratchy: The Movie"
I think this is the beginning of the thread that Bart will become a lawyer and eventually a Supreme Court Justice. In "Lisa’s Wedding," Bart mentions he’s "…getting out all of his aggression before he goes to law school." On the other hand, in "Bart to the Future," he’s a struggling musician at age 38 and Lisa is President… maybe he goes out to law school right after that. OK, I’ve gone far afield, but let me just close out by saying that this may be the only episode where Homer makes a parenting decision, sticks to it, and Bart learns from it.
I think we all know what this is about. Is it the song, the jacket, the rivalry with Barney? It’s certainly in the conversation for the best episode ever. My understanding is that Conan O’Brien came up with the joke showing Homer using the radio dial to keep from falling off the cliff.
Barney remarks, "Yeah, you do that," when Linda Ronstadt mentions she may record a version of the "Plow King" jingle in Spanish.
"Marge vs. the Monorail"
It’s no secret that I love the Monorail song – as you can see. Anyway, this episode truly has it all and is probably my favorite.
LENARD NIMOY: Well, my work here is done.
BARNEY: But you didn’t do anything!
LENARD NIMOY: [chuckles] Didn’t I? [beams away]
"Brother from the Same Planet"
I love the jokes in this episode – and what an epic conclusion!
"This is even more painful than it looks!"
"I Love Lisa"
A great episode with a satisfying ending and plenty of jokes in between. Whoever thought Ralph could be so interesting!
"Let me tell you something: Valentine’s Day is no laughing matter!"
I know this episode wouldn’t make most people’s list, but I am a big fan of the episodes that point out how strong the connection between Marge and Homer really is and always will be. You just can’t beat true love.
"We also would have accepted, ‘Tell me what you think of me.’"
Some season, huh? "Mr. Plow" and "Marge vss the Monorail," all in one season!
Oh, and there’s those "14 memorable ones" I mentioned – yeah, this entire season is great. I wouldn’t refer to the following as "classic," but these episodes are certainly on the cusp of greatness and they’re all memorable for me.
I always felt Adams Family Values ripped off this episode.
"Homer the Heretic"
I love the conclusion of this episode – Flanders’ epic rescue of Homer from the fire is fantastic, especially when Homer bounces off the mattress and flies back into the house and Flanders just sighs and says, "OK," and follows him back in with incredible acrobatic style.
"Lisa the Beauty Queen"
I like these Lisa and Homer episodes, even if I detest beauty pageants.
LISA: You really think I can win?
BART: I’m starting to think I can win!
"Marge Gets a Job"
A fine episode, but certainly not a favorite of mine. It’s always fun to watch Mr. Burns play out of character, though.
"New Kid on the Block"
I’m sure this episode all reminds us of being this age – it’s a good one, but not great.
"You won’t be needing this!"
"Lisa’s First Word"
I like the flashback episodes, but it’s probably not good that the thing I remember the most is Bart spinning on the close line and not a story element.
"Homer’s Triple Bypass"
This is a fine episode, but I’ve never found it especially funny, and given that The Simpsons is first and foremost a comedy, that doesn’t really help it’s case.
I love the trip to Duff Gardens, but frankly, Selma just doesn’t interest me. It’s not a bad episode, it just doesn’t wow me.
"Last Exit to Springfield"
This episode reminds me a lot of the one where Homer gets the job as safety inspector – of course, this one has the awesome dream sequence and the protest song, so that helps lift it above "Homer’s Odyssey."
"So It’s Come to This: A Simpsons Clip Show"
It’s bad enough that this episode is a clip show, but it’s frame work is kinda similar to "Homer’s Triple Bypass," which kinda makes it worse.
It’s an entertaining episode, but it’s kinda in one ear, out the other.
There’s some great sequences here – Homer’s training and Barry White’s, "You people make me sick!" is awesome.
"Marge in Chains"
Marge is valuable to her family… I didn’t really need this episode to point this out.
"Krusty Gets Kancelled"
This episode certainly sets the record for the most cameos and has some great jokes, so I can’t knock it.
"I’ll get you for this, Milder!"