The Simpsons

Season 14 Episode 3

Bart vs. Lisa vs. The Third Grade

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Nov 17, 2002 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
118 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Bart vs. Lisa vs. The Third Grade
Tired of "suckling on the six network teat," with their endless array of "reality shows," the Simpson family gets a satellite dish. Homer and Bart spend hours surfing all of the available channels. While Lisa studies for the school's upcoming achievement test; Bart doesn't, as he engrossed in Japanese Friends amongst and other lame satellite TV programming. Bart zones out during the test and daydreams about everything he's been watching lately. At a school assembly the next day, Principal Skinner announces that because of Lisa's high test score, she is being promoted to the 3rd grade. When Bart makes a comment about Lisa, Principal Skinner responds by also announcing that because of his low test score, Bart is being demoted to the 3rd grade. They'll be in class together, much to each other's horror. Lisa has a hard time adapting to the 3rd grade, as Bart is coming off as a much better student than he actually is. They go on a field trip to Capital City and Bart and Lisa are put together via the buddy system. Their teacher, Mrs. McConnell, decides that the students are going to help the state design a new flag. When Bart overhears Lisa breaking bad on him, he redesigns their entry. Lisa's anger with Bart causes them to fight and miss their bus back home. Bart and Lisa attempt to get home on their own, meanwhile Principal Skinner reports their disappearance to Homer and Marge, who subsequently journey to Capital City to try to find them. Bart and Lisa encounter a family of mountain folk, who take them back to the big city to reunite them with their family. Realizing that the "status quo" is best all-around, Principal Skinner returns Bart and Lisa's academic careers to normal.moreless

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  • this i like

    What i liked- "You can't trick us, we're from the learn to fart state!", "Young man, you aren't in this class. What are you doing here?" "Laughing at jerks." "Homework? On a field trip? What have you been huffing?" Willie complaining about the people on the memorial all having long names, the fanny packs, the punch buggy game on the bus, the end to act 1, amongst other things. decent episode. had a fair amount of laughs and the plot was nice. 4/5moreless
  • Another one of my favorite episodes

    In this episode the simpsons get tried of their cable and get satellite dish. then Bart and homer get a addiction to the tv and Bart and lisa take a big test at school. Then Lisa gets the biggest score and goes to the 3rd grade man I love the 3rd grade. And Bart makes fun of Lisan and Skinner say that Bart goes to the 3rd because he got the lowest score. In the 3rd grade Bart is the smartest kid. then on a map test while Lisa gets an A-. Bart says that the test was easy and recites all of the answers. Lisa proclaims that Bart cheated but the teacher changes Bart's grade to an A+. Then something about a buddies thing, the flag and I don't remember it all.moreless
  • Bart and Lisa in the same grade.

    I personally felt that this was a very very well done episode. I just thought the gags were right on, and the plot seemed very well done even tho it might not have been "original." Despite this the episode was very good. It was good to see Bart finally excel at something that was academic, and I felt his stuggle with his sister was hilarious especially on the field trip. Also I loved when Bart ruined Lisa's flag for Springfield I thought that it was typical of Bart to do something like that, and I found in very funny. Anyway this was just a great episode, and I would suggest watching it.moreless
  • A very nice episode.

    Not very very funny. But average.

    This episode is a very nice episode.

    It's not very funny, a bit above the average.

    I liked the part in the test, when Bart is imagening and starting to dream and sing "Hava Nagila" XD

    This episode's idea wasn't something, and that is what makes it not a GOOD episode. But it's absoulotely a nice one. There were a few really nice parts that i've really liked. I'm new here, so i'm not sure if I can tell which parts are good, but if you read it the tell me in a private messege please =]. When i'm thinking about this episode i'm telling myself; Wow, a very funny and a nice idea, but it's not a perfect idea for an episode, and that's why this episode gets "8" and not "10".

    Anyway i've really enjoyed this nice episode :D.moreless
  • This episode proves that 99.9% of episodes from seasons 10-18 are hilarious as ever!!!!!

    Annoyed with reality tv taking over, The Simpsons purchase a satellite dish to get extra channels. Brainwashed by the amount of television available, Bart fails to prepare for a schoolwide Big Achievement Test and gets an incredibly low score. Lisa gets the highest and is moved up to third grade, while due to Bart's score he is moved down, also to third grade. Bart finds himself the smartest in the class, as he learnt it all the previous year, while Lisa struggles. The two are paired up on their field trip to Capital City. Due to a fight they miss the bus back to Springfield and find themselves lost in the woods. Bart realizes his sister is alright and apologises for all he has done wrong in the past. A group of locals find the pair and drive them back home where Skinner promotes Bart back to the fourth grade and Lisa, although given the choice to stay in third, goes back to second.moreless
Julie Kavner

Julie Kavner

Marge Simpson, Patty Bouvier, and Selma Bouvier

Harry Shearer

Harry Shearer

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

Dan Castellaneta

Dan Castellaneta

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

Nancy Cartwright

Nancy Cartwright

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

Yeardley Smith

Yeardley Smith

Lisa Simpson

Hank Azaria

Hank Azaria

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

Tony Bennett

Tony Bennett


Special Guest Star

Marcia Wallace

Marcia Wallace

Edna Krabappel

Recurring Role

Tress MacNeille

Tress MacNeille


Recurring Role

Pamela Hayden

Pamela Hayden

Milhouse Van Houten

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (7)

    • In Bart's daydream, Pikachu from Pokémon and Bender from Futurama can be seen.

    • When Bart and Lisa tumble into the creek, you can tell its pretty deep from the underwater shot of them choking each other. But when they resurface they're able to stand and the water's only waist deep.

    • On the field trip memorial wall when Willie has to enter Bart and Lisa's names, you'll notice 2 particular names. El Jefe (Hefe) and Fat Mike - horns/guitar/backup vocals and bass/lead vocals/founding member (respectively) of the punk band NOFX.

    • Bart's fanny pack says "Lisa's Brother" and Lisa's says "Bart's Sister."

    • After Lisa is given her paper, you can clearly see that there is a B+ on top of the stack of the papers the teacher is holding. But a moment later, she gives Bart an A!

    • For some reason, the Capitol City Goofball is orange in this episode, when in others, he is yellow.

    • Bart and Lisa's fanny packs disappear as soon as they get on the bus.

  • QUOTES (32)

    • (Bart watches the Clock Channel, it shows a big clock ticking on the screen.)
      Announcer: Coming up on the clock channel: Six o'clock!
      Bart: Wait, I already saw this one.

    • Mrs. McConnell: Saying your buddy's name out loud is a security risk!

    • Lisa: Bart, the test is in two hours, and you haven't slept in a fortnight!
      Bart: What's a fortnight?
      Lisa: You should know, it's on the test!

    • Bart: I'm sorry I sabotaged your flag.
      Lisa: Well, I'm sorry for getting us lost out here.
      Bart: I'm sorry about the time I sawed the heads off your Malibu Stacies. You go.
      Lisa: I don't think I have any more.
      Bart: That's okay, I'll go again. Remember the time your bike was mangled by Gypsies?
      Lisa: Yes . . .
      Bart: Funny story. I was bored one day, and Dad had left his steamroller idling in the driveway . . .

    • Homer: Oh, it's red wire to red wire. What idiot dreamed that up?

    • Edna Krabappel: No pressure, children, but these test results will follow you for the rest of your life and beyond the grave.

    • Tom Brokaw: We'll be right back with a report on soccer moms who hate soccer.

    • (opening Lisa's flag, which Bart has rigged to say "Learn To Fart")
      Governor Bailey: I'll just unfurl this…(starts crying) That was my worst unfurling ever!
      Bart: Lisa how could you? The governor is crying!
      Nelson: Ha ha!
      Mrs. McConnell: You weren't on this field trip! How did you get here?
      Nelson: Biked.

    • Nelson: Ha ha!
      Mrs. McConnell: Young man, you're not in this class. What are you doing here?
      Nelson: Laughing at jerks.

    • Bart: I don't have to study on the weekend.
      Lisa: It's Wednesday night!
      Homer: Kids, kids. You're both right.

    • Salesman: Okay, now all we have to do is install your satellite dish. Can you be home from 8am Monday morning through June?

    • (on the "Touch the Stove" show)
      Host: So Kevin, I hear you collect amusing postcards.
      Man: Yeah, it all started when…
      Host: (slams the man's hand onto a big oven stove's top) Touch the stove!
      Man: AAAAAAAAAAH!!!

    • Homer: Hey, you can't fool us. We're from the "Learn to Fart" state.

    • Capital City Goofball: The time has come to change our state flag. This Confederate symbol is an embarrassment, particularly as we are a northern state.

    • Marge: Hello, Principal Skinner!
      Principal Skinner:(speaking fast) Parent who waves their right to sue says what?
      Marge: What?
      Principal Skinner:(Holds up an audio recorder and shuts record off) Got it.

    • Bart: Ha, ha! They left without you!
      Lisa: They left without you, too, you idiot!
      Bart: If I'm such an idiot, how come I'm the smartest kid in the third grade?
      Lisa: Because you've already done it once!

    • Lisa: Bart cheated!
      Mrs. McConnell: Young lady, in the third grade we don't care for tattletales.
      Lisa: Ohhhhh.
      Mrs. McConnell: And we don't care for moaners, either.
      (Lisa starts crying)
      Mrs. McConnell: Crying only pushes Bart's grade higher!

    • Lisa: Hey ... how do we get home?
      Bart: No problem. We'll just circle around like those kids in the Blair Witch Project.

    • Bart: Quiet nerds burp only near school.
      Lisa: Bart, I'm doing my geography homework.
      Bart: I know. That's how you remember the 4 original provinces of Canada. Quebec, New Brunswick, Ontario, Nova Scotia; quiet nerds burp only near school. And here's how you remember the principle exports; dogs eat barf only on Wednesday, Mable.
      Lisa: Stop! I want to learn on my own.
      (Bart walks out of the room)
      Bart (hanging from a vent): Canada's govener's general; clowns love haircuts, so should Lee Marvin's valle.
      Lisa: Get out! (attempts to hit Bart with her book)

    • Bart: She's not so great! She got diarrhea when we went to Carlsbad Caverns!

    • Mrs. McConnell: A rooster sits on a roof facing north. It lays an egg. Which way does it roll?
      Lisa: Ok, the sun rises in the east, so the rooster will probably want to lay it on the cool side…
      Bart: Roosters don't lay eggs. They're boys.

    • Lisa: Bart, I think we're lost.
      Bart: I used to be lost, until a friend turned me onto a book. It's called "Lisa is Stupid."
      Lisa: You die now!

    • Clown: It's finally happened, Bart. You've lost your mind!

    • Bart: Punch buggy red! (punches Lisa)
      Lisa: Ow! You are such an immature…punch buggy white! (punches Bart)
      Mrs. McConnell: Stop fighting.
      Lisa: He started it! He did punch buggy first.
      Girl: What's punch buggy?
      Bart: When you see a Volkswagen bug, you punch somebody and yell the color.
      (The class sees Volkswagen world.)
      Kid: Punch buggy blue! (punches kid)
      Kid: Punch buggy green! (punches kid)
      Kid: Punch buggy taupe! (punches kid)

    • Bart: And the Lord said, "Let there be crap!"

    • Bart: What?! I gotta be in the same class as her?
      Lisa: What?! I gotta be in the same class as him?
      Homer: (seeing Bart and Lisa on TV) They're gonna be in the same class as each other?!

    • Homer: Come on, kids. Daddy knows a way to get the money. With no risk.
      (cut to Homer and the kids at the horse track)
      Announcer: And the winner by a nose is No Risk!

    • Groundskeeper Willie: (chiseling Bart and Lisa's names on the Field Trip memorial) Oh, why is it always the kids with the long names?

    • Tom Brokaw: Oh, Lord, I'm so fat!

    • Japanese Chandler: Do you like my new shirt? It says "Reggae Hair Style Rock n' Roll." Could I be more Japanese?
      Japanese Phoebe: You are the Emperor of Last Year.
      Japanese Chandler: Your comeback shames me.

    • Mrs. McConnell: Lisa comes to us from Ms. Hoover… (makes drinking sounds) …while Bart was taught by Mrs. Krabappel. (fake cough) Slut!

    • Skinner: If this episode has taught us anything, it's that nothing works better than the status quo. Bart, you're promoted back to the fourth grade.
      Bart: Yeah!
      Skinner: And Lisa, you have a choice. You may continue to be challenged in third grade, or return to second grade and be merely a big fish in a little pond.
      Lisa: Big fish! Big fish!
      Homer: The status quo.
      Milhouse: The status quo? Ay karumba!
      Skinner: That's just sad.

  • NOTES (7)

    • This episode marks Marcia Wallace's 100th appearance!

    • Whatever state Springfield is in, the state bird is the pot-bellied sparrow and the state pasta is bowtie.

    • The family shops for a satellite dish at a store called The Boob Tubery.

    • Bart says that when he gets through with Lisa's flag, "it's gonna be a Bart-mangled banner." "Bart-Mangled Banner" will eventually be the title of episode 334.

    • The DVS narrator is different in this episode only.

    • A common misconseption about this future episode is that Bart fails the third grade. Something impossible for 4th grade students like Bart.

    • Blackboard Joke: Fish do not like coffee.
      Couch Gag: In an homage to the 1960's spy-comedy Get Smart (complete with music), Homer goes through a series of secure doorways, goes inside a telephone booth, dials a number and falls through the floor onto the couch in his proper position, joining the rest of the family.