The Simpsons

Season 8 Episode 15

Homer's Phobia

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Feb 16, 1997 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
208 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Bart destroys the clothes dryer, so Marge decides to sell a family heirloom to pay for a new one. They go to a store that sells camp antique items. Homer does not understand why grown men would enjoy such things, but he gets in a conversation with John, the antique dealer "with a difference" who works there. He invites John over to look over the valuable, worthless crap in his house. Homer thinks John is great, but Marge tells him that he is gay. Homer is homophobic, so he decides that he hates John, but the rest of the family continues to hang out with John. Bart begins to act effeminately, further horrifying Homer so he makes Bart look at scantily-clad women. Then he brings Bart to a steel mill, where real men work (not realizing that the mill workers are gay). When those things don't work, he decides to take Bart deer hunting. That does not work either, when the reindeer attacks them. John rushes Marge and Lisa to save the reindeer, but arrive in time to save Homer. In the end Homer decides to accept John and Bart for who they are.moreless

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  • What was the point of this episode. Homophobia is pathetic and no different to racism..grow up.

    This was pretty much just 20 minutes of ruthless gay bashing.

    I thought The Simpson's was a lot clever than this. Seriously.

    Apart from the constant homophobia on Homer's part, the humour was excellent as always. No dry humour to be seen here.

    This episode deserves a 7 for animation, 8 for humour, but 4, for a terrible plot.

    Seriously, why did this episode even win an Emmy? Because it's plot was mainly focused on something that most shows are still shy about? I think that when episodes deserve to win emmys, they have to be good.

    Don't get me wrong, it's great that they clearly haven't ignored the gay aspect of life, but did they have to do it so harshly?

    As the "Off the Telly" writers said, "this is a side of the show we'd not seen before, nor particularly wanted to see."moreless
  • Homer is a Homophobe

    In this episode, Homer meets a man named John, whom he quickly has a great friendship with. However, Homer suddenly begins hating John when he realizes that John's gay He then begins to fear that Bart is turning gay too. So Homer takes Bart to many things, ranging from a cigerette posterboard with hot chicks on it to a steel mill (more on that one later) however, Homer feels that none of it's working, he, Moe, and Barney take Bart on a hunting trip, however, it doesn't go nearly as planned. The Steel Mill was undoubtably the best scene, as it turned out to be a gay steel mill, and Homer looks like he's going to have another Heart Attack. Overall, a great episode, that earned it's emmy award, and I'm glad Homer learned his lesson at the end. 10/10 A+moreless
  • this was a good ep

    in this ep of the simpsons there is a new store that sells old things from the mall and there old toys and there is this nice guy in there . and bart likes him and start do things like him . homer gets afraid and has a fobia of gay people and so he wants to turn his son bart into a man and homer tries and bring s him to places but nothing works . and so he brings him hunting and they get introbule and are trapped till the guy comes and saves them this was a good ep and it had alot of funny scens like the stale mill and homer goes crazy becasue the thougt they were big strong men but they were gay dancers in side. thoes were some funny scenes in this epmoreless
  • Homer's Phobia

    Homer makes a new friend named John. But Homer starts hating him when it is revealed John is gay And now Homer is worried that Bart will turn gay if he hangs around John to much, so Homer decides to go hunting for reindeer, with Moe, Barney and Bart, to make Bart a permanent man. But when the reindeer attack, John ends up saving the day. In the end Homer decides he needs to love Bart no matter how he ends up in life.

    A great funny episode. Some may not like Homer's character but I didn't mind. Grade: A+moreless
  • Homer is a homophobe.

    The Simpsons must sell an old family heirloom in order to pay for a $900 gas bill. The family meets John, the owner of the collectibles store, who offers to check out their many posessions for any value. Homer takes a liking to him, but Marge informs him that John is gay Homer refuses to see John again, but notices Bart's behavior has changed since he had been with John. Homer tries to make Bart more 'manly' but in the process, takes him to a gay steel mill. Homer, Moe, and Barney take Bart deer hunting. They find themselves a reindeer pen and the men urge Bart to kill one. He refuses, and the herd gets aggressive towards the group. As the reindeer begin to attack, John arrives with a remote-controlled Stanta which neutralizes the herd. Homer thanks John for saving his life. I loved the way the Simpsons poked fun at a socitey that looks down upon homosexuals. It was good to see the show take a stand and this episode was hilarious. Watch it.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

John Waters

John Waters


Guest Star

Pamela Hayden

Pamela Hayden

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

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

  • QUOTES (19)

    • John: (having revealed Marge's 'heirloom' was just a liquor bottle from the '70s, drinking from it) Ah, that will make your Bull Run.
      Marge: Well, I guess it'll always be a monument to Grandma's secret drinking problem.

    • Homer: (to Bart) Don't worry, boy. We're gonna set you straight. By tomorrow morning, you'll be a regular Burt Reynolds.
      Bart: What are you talking about? Where are we going?
      Homer: Just a couple of good old-fashioned manly places. (puts his arm around Bart) Father and son!
      Homer's Brain: You're leaving the arm there too long! You wanna make it worse?
      (Homer quickly yanks his arm off Bart)
      Homer's Brain: No, no! He'll know you're on to him! Quick, shake his hand!
      (Homer does so)
      Homer: Just remember, son, no matter what happens, I'll always love you.
      Homer's Brain: As? As??
      Homer: (yanks hand away) As a father! A father! Regular father!

    • Moe: You ever been hunting before, there, Barty?
      Bart: Nope. Something about a bunch of guys, alone, together in the woods... seems kinda gay.
      (awkward silence)
      Homer: (angrily) That is a very immature attitude, young man!

    • (Homer takes Bart to a steel mill)
      Rosco: (to the other workers) Hey! Listen up! I want all of yous to say hello to the Simpsons.
      Workers: (sissy-like) Halloooooww!
      Homer: (horrified gasp) Has the whole world gone insane?!
      (He sees two workers jostling with each other in a sissy-like way)
      Worker #1: Stand still, there's a spark in your hair!
      Worker #2: Get it, get it!
      (Homer whimpers. A third worker walks past, wearing only hot pants and carrying a vat of hot steel)
      Worker #3: Hot stuff, comin' through!
      Homer: Aah!
      Bart: Dad, why'd you bring me to a gay steel mill?
      Homer: (frightened) I don't know! This is a NIGHTMARE! (to the workers) YOU'RE ALL SICK!
      Worker #4: (waves his hand) Oh, be nice!
      Homer: Ohh! My son doesn't stand a chance! The whole world's gone gay!
      (a whistle goes off)
      Homer: Oh my God, what's happening now?
      Rosco: We work hard. We play hard.
      ("Everybody Dance Now" starts playing as the entire mill is transformed into a night club. A frightened Homer backs away, groaning and covering Bart's eyes.)

    • Homer: Bart! Where did you get that shirt?
      Bart: I'unno...Came outta the closet.
      Homer: Uuh....huh.

    • Smithers: John!
      John: Uh...Waylon. Uh. I'd like you to meet The Simpsons!
      Smithers: I know the Simpsons. (Mumbling) So this is your sick mother?
      John: Don't do this to me Waylon.

    • Homer: That John is the greatest guy in the world. We've gotta have him and his wife over for drinks sometime.
      Marge: Hmm... I don't think he's married, Homer.
      Homer: Oh, a swinging bachelor, eh? Well, there's lots of foxy ladies out there.
      Marge: Homer, didn't John seem a little... festive to you?
      Homer: Couldn't agree more! Happy as a clam.
      Marge: (insisting) He prefers the company of men!
      Homer: Who doesn't?
      Marge: Homer... listen carefully. John is a ho-mo...
      Homer: Right.
      Marge: ...sexual!
      (Homer screams)

    • John: Oh, I've got the exact same curtains only in my bathroom. Didn't you just die when you found these?
      Marge: Not really...they just had corn on them. Kitchen...corn.

    • John: Well, if you're inviting me over?
      Homer: I practically insist. Shall we say 5:00, the snacking hour?
      John: My heart is palpitating. Woo hoo!

    • Homer: Maybe that thing is a hunk-of-junk, but look at what you're selling. Fifty bucks for a toy!? No kid is worth that!
      John: Oh, but this is the Rex Mars Atomic Discombobulator. Don't you just love the graphics on this box?
      Homer: No. How can you love a box or a toy or graphics? You're a grown man.

    • John: Hi, I'm John, can I help you with anything?
      Marge: Yes, I have something that I'd like to sell.
      John: Please tell me it's your hair.

    • (Marge wakes up because she hears Homer making strange noises. She turns on the light.)
      Marge: Homie, I can hear you chewing on your pillow. What's wrong?
      Homer: Marge, the boy was wearing a Hawaiian shirt!
      Marge: So?
      Homer: There's only two kinds of guys that wear those shirts, gay guys and big fat party animals. And Bart doesn't look like a big fat party animal to me.

    • Marge: Oh, Homer, look! Look! A TV Guide owned by Jackie O.!
      John: Oh, you should see the crossword puzzle! She thought "Mindy" lived with "Mark".
      Homer: Give her a break! Her husband was killed!

    • Lisa: Aw, Mom, are you sure you want to sell a family heirloom to pay a gas bill? I mean, what would your grandma say?
      Marge: I'm sure she'd be proud that her descendants had piping-hot tap water and plenty of warm, dry underwear.

    • (Homer rounds on John after catching Bart dancing to "The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss)")
      John: Homer, what have you got against gays?
      Homer: You know! It's not... usual. If there was a law, it'd be against it!
      Marge: Oh, Homer, please! You're embarrassing yourself.
      Homer: No, I'm not, Marge! They're embarrassing me. They're embarrassing America. They turned the Navy into a floating joke. They ruined all our best names, like Bruce and Lance and Julian. Those were the toughest names we had! Now they're just, uh...
      John: Queer?
      Homer: Yeah, and that's another thing! I resent you people using that word. That's our word for making fun of you! We need it! Well, I'm taking back our word, and I'm taking back my son!

    • Barney: Aw, Moe, we were saved by a sissy!
      Moe: Yeah, yeah, we'll never live it down. Oh boy, it looks like it's suicide again for me.
      Homer: Hey! We owe this guy, and I don't want you calling him a sissy! This guy's a fruit! And a... no, wait, wait, wait... queer! Queer! (to John) That's what you like to be called, right?
      John: Well, that or John.

    • (After John saves Homer, Bart, Barney and Moe from the rampaging reindeer)
      Barney: Is it okay to come out now, Mr. Gay Man, sir?
      Moe: I'll do anything you say! (suggestively) Anything!

    • (After meeting John, Homer is worried that Bart is gay. He places Bart in front of a billboard with scantily clad women on it.)
      Bart: What am I supposed to do here?
      Homer: Nothing. Just sit. I'll be back.
      (Homer walks away, revealing the "Laramie Slims" billboard.)
      Homer: Well, it's been two hours. How do you feel?
      Bart: I dunno. I kinda want a cigarette.
      Homer: That's a good start. Let's get you a pack. What's your brand?
      Bart: Anything slim!
      Homer: (Grunts) Okay, that didn't work.

    • Homer: You know me, Marge. I like my beer cold, my TV loud, and my homosexuals fa-laming!

  • NOTES (5)

    • Mike B. Anderson won the 1998 WAC Winner Award for Best Director for Primetime Series for this episode.

    • The scene at the steel mill was an idea by Steve Tompkins, who wrote episode 8-6, "A Milhouse Divided."

    • Blackboard Joke: None.
      Couch Gag: Someone tries to download the family from America Online and the computer freezes.

    • In 1997, this episode won an Emmy for, Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming One Hour or Less). This episode won the 1997 Annie Award for Best Individual Achievement: Directing in a TV Production.

    • The episode is generally rated as one of the most popular episodes of the show. It won four awards including a GLAAD Media Award. It was placed fifth in Entertainment Weekly's list of the top 25 episodes of The Simpsons. And aside from the censors being against it, the episode received very few complaints at all.