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Homer Simpson, Grampa Simpson, Barney Gumble, Krusty the Clown, Groundskeeper Willie, and others
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Moe Szyslak, Chief Wiggum, Comic Book Guy, Lou, and others
Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, Waylon Smithers, Kent Brockman, and others
Marge Simpson, Patty Bouvier, and Selma Bouvier
Bart Simpson, Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum, Todd Flanders, and others
Maude Flanders, Helen Lovejoy, Miss Hoover, and others
This marks the first appearance of Apu's devotion to the elephant-headed Hindu deity, Ganesha, who is the god of "worldly wisdom" and the "remover of obstacles."
The sermon title on the church marquee is: "When Homer Met Satan."
The Springfield Volunteer Fire Dept. consists of: Apu (Fire Chief), Krusty, Barney, Otto, Chief Wiggum, and Luann Van Houten. Also, on the fire truck we can see a character who appears to be Hans Moleman with a mustache.
In this episode, we learn that Moe is a snake handler.
This is the first appearance of God on the show although, his face is never shown.
God is the only Simpsons character to have five fingers.
In Moe's Tavern, a sign on the wall reads: "Maximum Occupancy 65"
Homer's Playdude with an interview with Lorne Michaels is dated July 1966.
Goof: In Homer's first dream of God, God has five fingers. In the last scene, however, God only has four fingers like everyone else.
(Krusty, wearing a kippah, comes to Homer's door)
Krusty: Hello, I'm collecting for the Brotherhood of Jewish clowns. Last year, tornadoes claimed the lives of 75 Jewish clowns. The worst incident was during our convention at Lubbock, Texas. There were floppy shoes and rainbow wigs everywhere! (sobs) It was terrible!
Homer: Wait a minute! Is this a religious thing?
Krusty: A religious clown thing, yes.
Krusty: Well, bless you anyw--
(Homer slams the door in Krusty's face)
Bart: Hey, where's Homer?
Marge: Your father is... resting.
Bart: Resting "hung over," resting "got fired," come on, help me out here!
Homer: Boy, everyone is stupid except me.
Apu: You are on your honor not to steal anything.
Kearny: (lying and eating a box of cereal) Oh we won't.
Apu looks at them for a moment and then puts a little boy on the counter.
Apu: Little Jamshed, the store is in your hands.
Little Jamshed: Oh, how I have waited for this day. (whips out a shot gun and cocks it.)
Kearny's shocked as his mouth hangs open and he drops the box of cereal.
Homer: God, I gotta ask you something. What's the meaning of life?
God: Homer, I can't tell you that.
God: You'll find out when you die.
Homer: I can't wait that long!
God: You can't wait six months?
Homer: No! Tell me now!
God: Well... okay. The meaning of life is...
(gets cut off by the closing music)
Reverend Lovejoy: Homer, you remember Matthew 21-27, "The Foolish man who built his house on sand".
Homer: And you remember Matthew...21-17?
Reverend Lovejoy: And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and he lodged there?
Homer: Yeah...(regains confidence) think about it.
Homer: You bet your sweet...(looks around)...ass! Heh, heh, heh!
God: (To Homer) Now if you'll excuse me, I have to appear on a tortilla in Mexico.
Ned: Homer, God didn't set your house on fire.
Reverend Lovejoy: No, but He was working in the hearts of your friends and
neighbors when they came to your aid, be they Christian (Ned), Jew (Krusty), or ... miscellaneous (Apu).
Apu: Hindu! There are 700 million of us.
Reverend Lovejoy: Aw, that's super.
Insurance Guy: Any valuables in the house?
Homer: Well, the Picasso, my collection of classic cars--
Insurance Guy: Sorry, this policy only covers actual losses, not made-up stuff.
Homer: Well that's just great!
Barney: What are these axes for?
Chief Wiggum: I dunno, chopping stuff.
Barney: Gotcha. (chops down the Simpson's mailbox)
Chief Wiggum: That's some nice choppin'.
Apu: You ducks are really trying my patience! But you're so cute!
Homer: Oh, the song. The song. (sings) When the fire starts to burn, there's a lesson you must learn. Something something, then you'll see: You'll avoid catastrophe! D'oh!
(Homer buys a crate of Duff beer and a packet of cigars at the Kwik-E-Mart)
Homer: Apu! I see you're not in church!
Apu: Oh, but I am! I have a shrine to Ganesha, the god of worldly wisdom, located in the employee lounge!
Homer: (approaching the shrine) Hey, Ganesha, want a peanut?
Apu: Please do not offer my god a peanut.
Homer: No offense Apu, but when they were handing out religions, you must have been out taking a whiz.
Apu: (angrily) Mr. Simpson, please pay for your purchases and get out and (cheerfully) come again!
Marge: I'm going to ask you one last time. Are you sure you won't come with us to church?
TV Announcer: Coming up next: make your own ladder!
Homer: Very sure.
Homer: Kids, let me tell you about another so-called wicked guy. He had long hair and some wild ideas. He didn't always do what other people thought was right. And that man's name was... I forget. But the point is... I forget that, too. Marge, you know what I'm talking about. He used to drive that blue car?
Flanders Family: (singing to Homer) God said to Noah, there's gonna be a floody-floody. Rain came down, it started to get muddy, muddy. Get those animals, out of the arky-arky...
Homer: Leave me alone! (drives off)
Todd Flanders: Dad, the heathen's getting away!
Ned Flanders: I see him, son! (gives chase)
Homer: God Himself told me I should seek a new path.
Reverend Lovejoy: Oh, really...
Homer: Yeah. He appeared before me in a dream, and I knew that was special because I usually dream about naked... Marge.
TV Announcer: We interrupt this public affairs program to bring you a football game.
(Homer is watching The Three Stooges) Lady: You must be the three chiropractors I sent for, now start manipulating my spine. Curly: Hey Moe, we don't know anything about manipulatin' Moe: You heard the lady, grab her spine and get crackin'. Homer: Hehehe.. Moe is their leader.
Homer: I'm all naked and wet!
Marge: Homer, are you actually giving up your faith?
Homer: No! No no no no no...well, yes.
Homer: There you go again. Always taking someone else's side. Flanders, the Water Department, God...
Homer: I'm whizzin' with the door open... and I love it!
Itchy & Scratchy: "Flay Me To The Moon"
Scratchy read of a space launch in the paper. Itchy sneaks into his house, and pulls his tongue out like a fishing-line, runs outside and ties it to the spaceship. It takes off, with Scratchy's tongue unwinding to enormous proportions until the vessel orbits the moon twice and ties a knot around it with the tongue. This pulls the moon towards the earth, and Scratchy only noticing now, panics and hides in his closet. The moon crushes his house with him inside. Inside NASA headquarters, 'Itchy' mice celebrate a successful mission and drink champagne.
When developing the script, the writers made sure that God only appeared in Homer's dreams and not in real life. This was done to prevent viewers from getting offended.
A number of New Orleans townspeople were upset at the "New Orleans" song in the previous episode. The Blackboard gag was a sendoff/apology to those people.
This is the first episode produced by Film Roman, which will later also produce The Critic, King of the Hill, the first two seasons of Family Guy and ultimately The Simpsons Movie. This is also the first episode where the animation production is outsourced to Rough Draft Studios, which will eventually join Akom Productions as one of the main overseas animation studios for The Simpsons.
Blackboard Joke: I will not defame New Orleans.
Couch Gag: The American version has a couch gag where the Simpsons run to the couch and find that it's not there. The Canadian version has the couch gag where the family sit down and get transported into a secret passageway as the wall turns.
The climax to the car chase (Homer jumping his car onto a departing garbage barge to finally escape Flanders) is taken from the 1973 film White Lightning.
St. Francis of Assisi
When Homer is wearing a brown robe and surrounded by animals, he resembles St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals.
The Dukes Of Hazzard
The scene where Flanders chases Homer through the streets of Springfield is taken from the show The Dukes Of Hazzard.
When Harry Met Sally...
The title of Reverend Lovejoy's sermon, "When Homer Met Satan," is an obvious pun on the 1989 movie When Harry Met Sally...
Itchy & Scratchy Episode: "Flay Me to the Moon"
The title of the Itchy & Scratchy cartoon, "Flay Me to the Moon," is a play on Frank Sinatra's hit song, "Fly Me to the Moon."
The scene where Flanders struggles to drag an unconscious Homer out of his burning house mimics Backdraft.
The scene where Homer – clad in only his undershorts – dances around his house with the music blaring copies a scene with Tom Cruise from Risky Business.
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