The Simpsons

The Telltale Head

Season 1, Ep 8, Aired 2/25/90
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  • Episode Description
  • All of Springfield becomes enraged at Bart after he decapitates the town statue of Jebediah Springfield.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Sam Simon

  • Mike Reiss

  • Al Jean

  • Rich Moore

  • Matt Groening

  • Fan Reviews (32)
  • review

    By noman, Dec 11, 2013

  • Perfect.

    By jmbsonic555, Oct 17, 2011

  • The Tell-Tale Head: Bart cuts off the head of a statue for a dare which upsets the whole town.

    By Sabrespongebob, Jul 13, 2010

  • the town is outraged at bart for cutting off the head of the statue

    By cube2k8, May 04, 2010

  • Nice

    By futuramarama, Apr 05, 2010

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (15)

    • (While Reverend Lovejoy preaches in church, Homer listens to a football game using a personal radio and headphones.) Football Announcer: Now they're lining up for this crucial kick. One final tick of the clock remains. If they win, it will cap an amazing comeback. But, it's a 49-yard field goal into the wind. Homer: (Quietly) Make it! Make it! Make it! Make it! Football Announcer: The kick is up. Homer: (Quietly) Oh, please, please, please, please! Football Announcer: It's got the distance. Holy Toledo, it's good! Homer: (Homer stands up and shouts.) It's good! It's good! It's good! (The entire congregation murmurs and stares at Homer.) Homer: It's...good to see you all in church.

    • (Homer looks through his bowling ball catalog.) Homer: Ooh! Look at this one! "The Hammer of Thor: It will sends your pins to...Val-halla." Lisa? Lisa: Valhalla is where Vikings go when they die. Homer: Oh, that's some ball!

    • (The topic of Heaven is discussed in Sunday School class.) Milhouse: Will there be cavemen in heaven? Sunday School Teacher: Certainly not! Bart: Um, ma'am, what if you're a really good person, but you get into a really, really bad fight and your leg gets gangrene and it has to be amputated. Will it be waiting for you in heaven? Sunday School Teacher: For the last time, Bart, yes!

    • Bart: Murderous mob, I beg you to spare our lives. At least until you've heard the story of how we ended up with the head of our beloved town founder. Barney: How long will this story take? Bart: Uh, about twenty-three minutes and five seconds.

    • (Moe consoles his patrons after hearing the news of the town statue.) Moe: Okay, come on, come on, everybody. We gotta get on with our lives. Let's try and put this tragedy behind us. Barney: You're right, Moe. A beer, please, and make sure there's a head on it. (Moe starts sobbing.)

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    Notes (4)

    • This is one of the few episodes to actually put the title of the episode at the start.

    • First and possibly only utterance by Bart on his skateboard of "cowabunga" in the series. For years many of the crew thought it was a line just added to T-Shirts out of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles craze.

    • First Appearances: Apu, Krusty, Sideshow Bob, Jimbo, Dolph, Kearney, Reverend Lovejoy, Ms. Albright, and first time anyone mentions Jebediah Springfield.

    • Blackboard Joke: I did not see Elvis. Couch Gag: The family runs in and squeezes into the couch. Bart pops up and out of frame and he comes crashing down seconds later while the credits are shown on the TV set.

    Trivia (7)

    • Bart tells the towns people that his story will be 23 minutes and 5 seconds. (Actual length of this episode: 22 min. 45 sec.)

    • The movie marquee reads Space Mutants IV: The Triliogy Continues.

    • A member of the angry mob carries a sign with the likeness of Jebediah Springfield's head and the words "Have You Seen Me".

    • Bart's blackboard joke for this episode is "I Did Not See Elvis." However, one of the lines reads, "I Did See Elvis."

    • Before they head off to church, Marge searches Bart's person and confiscates some dice, a slingshot, and a Radioactive Man comic book.

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    Allusions (4)

    • Wallace Wolodarsky The football commentator mentions a player named "Wolodarsky". Wallace Wolodarsky is a writer on The Simpsons.

    • The Whole Earth Catalog When Homer is selecting a new bowling ball, he flips through The Bowl Earth Catalog. This is a parody of The Whole Earth Catalog, which was published periodically between 1968 and 1998.

    • The Godfather Though it isn't as drawn out as other episodes have shown it, Bart waking up to see the head of Jebediah Springfield is a parody of the horse head incident in the 1972 film The Godfather.

    • The Tell-Tale Heart The title and the plot of this episode is and allusion to Edgar Allen Poe's famous short story, "The Tell-Tale Heart." In the short story, a man murders another man and hides the body under the floorboards of his home. He later confesses to the murder when his guilty conscience makes him "hear" the beating of the dead man's heart, and he thinks others can hear it too.

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