The Simpsons

Season 6 Episode 1

Bart of Darkness

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Sep 04, 1994 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
262 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Bart of Darkness
It is really hot and the Simpson family does not have air conditioning. They try to live in a tent beside the refrigerator, but that does not work. Otto drives by with a traveling swimming pool. This gives Bart and Lisa the idea to hound Homer for a pool which they relentlessly do until he caves in and buys them one. All the kids in the neighborhood come by to use it. Bart tries to jump from his tree house into the pool, but winds up breaking his leg. He will have to spend the rest of the summer in a cast, so there will be no more swimming for him. He watches as Lisa becomes incredibly popular. Bart finds himself a new hobby by spying on the neighborhood with Lisa's telescope. While looking out the "Rear Window" of the house, Bart thinks he's seen Flanders commit a murder. He gets Lisa to break into Flanders' house and look for clues. He watches as Flanders returns home with an axe. He goes to help her, broken leg and all. Then Flanders tells them that Maude has been away at bible camp, but now she is back.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • A Cruel,Dark Episode For All The Right Reasons

    I see this episode as a commentary. A commentary on how cruel and heartless kids can be. It's a relatable episode. One that goes deep into the feelings of Bart, right after being left behind by his "friends".

    Since it's summer, the heat is intense. This causes The Simpsons to buy a pool... which everyone goes to. However,Bart hurts himself, and has to sit out for the rest of the summer. Since the children are enjoying the pool, they forget about Bart,causing him to become isolated and maddened. This is the part that is so relatable. I feel pity for Bart trough the episode. But somehow, this cruelty works in favor for the episode. How come? Well,for starters,the cruelty towards Bart isn't overblown (say,like The Boys Of Bummer). The kids behave like the average kid who doesn't really care about others. They're unlikeable little pricks, sure, but that's the point. They also dislike Martin once his pool breaks, so it shows this misfortune doesn't just happen with one kid. Criticizing kids like this in a subtle manner isn't something I see usually in shows like these, and this is probably one of the first cartoons to do something like this. It's really appreciated, at least in my part.

    Seeing Bart grow insane over time is somehow entertaining as well. I have a liking for episodes where a character becomes progressively insane,so maybe it's just me. Perhaps the only truly negative aspect of the show is how predictable it is Ned Flanders won't be a murderer. But seeing Bart obsess over this is somewhat enjoyable as well.

    Comedically,the episode is also good. Jokes such as Jimbo calling Marge Mrs. Bart in doubt and Nelson pantsing Martin,who wears 17 bathing suits, are understandably fan favorites. But the dramatic aspects of the story really steal the show in this one. It is an awesome episode overall.moreless
  • The sixth season begins with Bart suspecting that Ned Flanders just might be a murderer.

    I have always felt that season six of "The Simpsons" is one of the series' best. Seeing this episode again just reinforced that feeling. "Bart of Darkness" has quite a few laughs and has a very well written script. The one criticism I have is a criticism I have for many episodes of this long running series. It could not have been more obvious that Ned did not kill his wife. However the reveal of who he actually "killed' was quite funny. One of the best seasons of this long running series definitely got started off on a positive note.moreless
  • perfect

    what i liked- the guy singing at the beginning, the simpsons using a tent in the refrigerator (marge, can you set the oven to cold), nelson's epidermis line, the end to the episode with martin singing, ned's girlie scream, bart thinking ned killed maude, the mystery aspect, etc.

    good episode. of course ned wouldn't kill his wife, but it was still a fun episode to see why there was a scream and ned burying something. fun episode, and so i give thee a grade of an A+moreless
  • Great Episode.

    It is extremely hot in Springfield, and the Simpsons don't have an air conditioner. They try sitting in a tent next to the fridge, and putting on fans, but they're still hot. Then, Otto drives by in the poolmobile. All of the kids swim in it, and when Otto drives off, Bart and Lisa beg Homer for a pool. Homer gives in, and soon the whole town is using The Simpson's pool. When Bart breaks his leg by jumping in the pool from a tree branch( but falling), he must stay inside all summer. Lisa lends Bart her telescope, and Bart begins spying on people. He overhears a shrill scream at Flander's house, and hears him say "I'm a murdeerer". Bart thinks that Ned killed Maude. When Ned is out, Bart sends Lisa to search around his house for evidence. When Ned comes back, he explains that Maude was away at Bible Camp. And that he killed a houseplant.

    This is a great episode. I loved when Martin wore 17 bathing suits, but still gets pantsed. I also love Jimbo's line:"Um.. hello Mrs.. Bart."

    Overall, a great episode from a great season.

    Overall Grade: A/95%moreless
  • this was a good ep

    in this ep of the simpsons show homer installes a pool during a very hot summer in springfield in the simpsons backyard bart attempts to do a really cool dive but breaks his leag and while the other kids are using the pool and he cant bart sees something that he thinks is murder like the movie rearwindow. and in this one he sse what he thinks is maud flaners when ned is buring something and he tries to get lisa to help him by sneeking in neds house but thing is ned was just buring his wifes favorite plant this was a good ep to start the sixth season of the simpsonsmoreless
Dan Castellaneta

Dan Castellaneta

Homer Simpson, Grampa Simpson, Barney Gumble, Krusty the Clown, Groundskeeper Willie, and others

Hank Azaria

Hank Azaria

Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Moe Szyslak, Chief Wiggum, Comic Book Guy, Lou, and others

Harry Shearer

Harry Shearer

Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, Waylon Smithers, Kent Brockman, and others

Julie Kavner

Julie Kavner

Marge Simpson, Patty Bouvier, and Selma Bouvier

Nancy Cartwright

Nancy Cartwright

Bart Simpson, Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum, Todd Flanders, and others

Yeardley Smith

Yeardley Smith

Lisa Simpson

Pamela Hayden

Pamela Hayden

Milhouse Van Houten, Rod Flanders, Jimbo Jones, and others

Recurring Role

Maggie Roswell

Maggie Roswell

Maude Flanders, Helen Lovejoy, Miss Hoover, and others

Recurring Role

Russi Taylor

Russi Taylor

Martin Prince, Sherri, Terri and others

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (21)

    • Bart: But I saw the murder and then I saw you bury the corpse in the back yard!
      Ned: (crying) All right, it's true. I am a murderer! (everyone gasps) I over watered Maude's favorite ficus plant, I panicked, then I buried the remains. I was hoping to replace it before you got home.
      Bart: But I heard a woman scream.
      Ned: Oh? Well, now that I can't explain.
      Lou: (holding up plant) Found it, Chief.
      Ned: (screams like a woman)
      Bart: Oh. Well, I guess that explains everything.
      Homer: Not everything. There's still the little matter of the whereabouts of your wife.
      Maude: Um, I'm right here.
      Homer: (sarcastic) Oh, I see. Then everything is wrapped up in a neat little package. (everyone looks at him) Really, I mean that. Sorry if it sounded sarcastic.

    • Bart: (watching Flanders) An ax. He's got an ax! I'll save you, Lisa! (tries to walk on his leg and falls back) Uh, I'll save you by calling the police. (dials 911)
      Voice: Hello, and welcome to the Springfield Police Department Resc-u-Fone. If you know the name of the felony being committed, press one. To choose from a list of felonies, press two. If you are being murdered or calling from a rotary phone, please stay on the line.

    • Marge: Mmm, I wish you'd stop spreading bad rumors about people. Remember how you got Grampa tarred and feathered?
      Bart: Sure, that was twenty minutes ago.

    • Lisa: Huh? Hello? Hey, I'm stuck in here! I gotta think of a way to get out.
      Lisa's Brain: Well, well, well, look who's come crawling back.

    • Hibbert: I'm sorry, that leg's going to have to come off.
      (Homer and Bart gasp)
      Hibbert: (chuckles) Did I say "leg"? I meant that wet bathing suit.

    • Milhouse: Hey Nelson, he's really hurt. I think he broke his leg.
      Nelson: I said, ha ha.

    • Ice Cream Man: (shouting as he drives by) Ice cream! Ice cream! We are all out of ice cream!

    • Lisa: Your refusal will result in months and months of--
      Lisa & Bart: Can we have a pool dad?! Can we have a pool dad?! Can we have a pool dad?! Can we have a pool dad?! Can we have a pool dad?!

    • Bart: Oh no, he's going to kill Rod and Todd! That's horrible . . . in theory.

    • Bart: I'm telling you, Ned Flanders murdered his wife!
      Homer: But why? She's such a fox! I mean, what's on Fox tonight? Something ribald, no doubt...

    • Ned: I wish there was some other explaination for this...but there isn't. I'm a murderer, I'm a murderer!
      Bart: Then that's not the real Ned Flanders.
      Bart: If that's not Flanders, he's done his homework.

    • Marge: Is it true that we should wait at least an hour after eating before we go in?
      Pool Salesman: Look, question lady, this job is not what I really do. I play keyboards.

    • Pool Salesman: Over here we have the Hick Tub, the Insta-Rust, there's the Lightning-magnet, this is the Tinkler…
      Homer: Ooooh! The Tinkler! I like the sound of that.

    • Otto: (referring to the Pool-mobile) Sorry, Bart dude. We gotta fill this thing with Epsom Salt and jam it on over to the old folks' home.

    • (Bart calls for help.)
      911 Recording: If you know the 3-digit number of the crime being committed, please enter it now.
      (Bart enters code)
      You've entered the code for regicide. If you know the name of the King or Queen being murdered...

    • (After the refrigerator motor burns out)
      Homer: Marge, can you set the oven to cold?

    • Chief Wiggum: (to a skinny-dipping Homer and Marge) Do not be alarmed. Continue swimming naked. Aw, come on, continue! Come on! Aw. All right, Lou, open fire.

    • Bart's Brain: Well, it looks like it's just you and me, Barty-boy. Bart: Oh, great, I get to spend the summer with my brain.

    • Hans Moleman: Well, you're certainly doing your job today, Mr. Sun.
      (the sun's rays go through his glasses, setting his shirt on fire)
      Hans Moleman: Oh, rats!

    • Martin Prince: My plan has come to fruition. Soon I will be queen of summertime...uh, King! King!

    • Homer: Let us celebrate our new arrangement with the adding of chocolate to milk.

  • NOTES (2)

    • Blackboard Joke: Beans are neither a fruit nor musical.
      Couch Gag: The family is sitting in midair when the couch runs in and assembles itself on top of them, making them collapse.

    • Itchy & Scratchy: "Planet of the Aches"
      Itchy entombs Scratchy behind a brick wall for 3000 years. Future rats uncover him, bathe and clothe him, then put him in an arena and hurl knives at him through telekinesis.


    • National Lampoon's Animal House
      The part in the beginning where the hippie sings "Sunshine on My Shoulder" and gets punched by a passerby is similar to a scene in National Lampoon's Animal House during the toga party where a hippie singer performs "The Riddle Song" and gets his guitar wrecked by Bluto (played by John Belushi).

    • Star Trek
      The mice with the big brains from the Itchy & Scratchy cartoon are similar to the Talosians from the original pilot of the original Star Trek pilot episode "The Cage" and re-introduced in the first season episode "The Menagerie."

    • Caddyshack
      The scene involving the kids do the syncronized swimming is a take off of a similar scene in the 1980 film Caddyshack. Both scenes have the same music.

    • Episode Title: "Bart of Darkness"
      This episode title is a parody of Joseph Conrad's short story "Heart of Darkness."

    • Rear Window
      The scenes where Bart watches the Flanders' house is a spoof of the Jimmy Stewart-Alfred Hitchcock classic 1954 film Rear Window, where a man confined to a wheelchair in his apartment believes he eyewitnessed a murder. Jimmy Stewart's character in the movie is seen in this episode, coincidentally, the character in the movie played by Grace Kelly who runs into the apartment that Jimmy Stewart has been spying on is also named Lisa.