The Simpsons

Season 15 Episode 9

I, (Annoyed Grunt)-Bot

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Jan 11, 2004 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
148 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

I, (Annoyed Grunt)-Bot
Milhouse comes over with a Psycho Cycle bike conversion kit, which they use on Bart's bike to make it look cooler. While riding the modified bike, they are hassled by older boys with "big boy" bikes. It makes Bart wish for a ten-speed bike. To get a new bike Bart sacrifices his old bike right in front of Dr. Hibbert's Mercedes. As Dr. Hibbert leaves his Mercedes then runs over Snowball II and Lisa is devastated. Bart and Homer get Bart a new bike, but it needs to be assembled and Homer tries to do his best. The bike falls apart when Bart tries to show it off to the older boys. Later Bart and Homer are watching "Robot Rumble" and the father and son teams inspire Homer to try building a robot for them to enter in competition but Bart leads Homer to believe that Bart thinks he is an oaf. Marge and Lisa look for a new cat and Lisa finds a new one that she calls Snowball III. Homer tries to build a robot, but his result is a failure. Homer looks to his father for inspiration and becomes a robot instead of building one. Bart wakes to find Homer's robot in his room, which is actually Homer inside of large metal shell powered by a tricycle. Lisa finds that Snowball III has drowned in the fish tank. Bart competes on "Robot Rumble," with the robot he's called "Chief Knock-A-Homer," but Homer is nowhere to be found. Homer, hidden inside the robot, manages to win his first match, but only after he receives numerous cuts and bruises. Lisa gets (and quickly loses) a new cat named Coltrane. Chief Knock-A-Homer quickly works his way into the finals, but Bart is sorry that his father hasn't been able to see any of the Chief's victories. The Chief's final match is scheduled to be against Professor Frink and his son's deadly looking robot. Lisa, depressed about her propensity to kill cats, is surprised when a crazy lady leaves her with a new cat. Lisa sees that new cat looks kill proof, and decides to call it Snowball II and forgot the whole dead cat thing ever happened. After the first round of the finals Bart discovers the secret inside of Chief Knock-A-Homer and thinks his dad is even cooler for doing that. The match is stopped in the second round when Homer's presence in the robot is revealed to everyone. The law of robotics saves Homer's life and the Frink robot goes out its way to make Homer comfortable. Nature's greatest killing machine is declared the winner.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
  • After failing Bart (Again), Homer makes a desperate decision to make it up to him. Elsewhere Lisa is having cat trouble.

    There are quite a few full moons over Springfield in this episode. When I first learned of this episode I was a little put off by it because it does recycle the old premise where Homer fails Bart and/or Lisa due to his foolishness and then makes a desperate attempt to make it up to them. Remember the season three episode "Lisa's Pony"? However I was pleasantly surprised to see how good this episode is. It is in my opinion the second best episode of the season ranked only behind "Simple Simpson". I laughed myself silly frequently while watching this episode. The "Robot Rumble" sequences are all rip roaring hysterical. The scene where Homer's right arm is badly injured by the circular saw blade on the first robot Chief Knock-a-Homer faces might be a little unsettling however. Still the subsequent robot fight scenes work very well. The climactic final battle is very clever. It was obvious that all would be revealed there, but the audience is not exactly sure how it would be revealed which helped keep the audience's interest. The secondary story concerning Lisa's bad luck with cats had its share of laughs too. I did not care that much for it, but it did have its moments. The main reason to watch this terrific episode is for the primary story. If you have not already, I highly recommend you do so.moreless
  • Post Classic Classic

    Homer and Bart bond when Homer builds a robot for Bart and him for a competition {Robot Rumble, where people build robots and fight them}. Unfortunately, the robot sucks. So Homer pretends to be a robot. Bart controls the robot not knowing the truth about it until the end.

    In the sub plot, Lisa's beloved cat dies. They get another cat. She drowns. They get another cat. It jumps out the window. The Crazy Cat Lady gives Lisa a cat.

    This is one of season 15's bests for sure. Humor, plot, everything was pretty perfect. Bravo Al Jean and writers! Bravomoreless
  • Man I love this episode it rocks

    In this episode Milhouse gets parts to make Bart's bike better then the bullies come and mock then. So bart wants a new bike then Bart destroys his bike then Homer gets a new one then he puts it to geter then I like the part when Bart moons the bullies then the bike is destroy then Homer controls a robot he gives to bart then he is in the robots fights I really like the part when Homer gets the gun and shoots Ralph's robot and freakin' homer when fights the big robot and he couldn't win and I really like the fights and Homer somehow winsmoreless
  • Homer bonds with Bart secretly.

    Homer builds Bart a robot to take part in a Robot Wars-style game show. The bottom line to descirbe this episode is that it is just a pure master piece. Everything about this episode is great. Its a heart warming story with some great jokes that can make you laugh and touch your heart. This is one of my favorite episodes just soely because of that. This is a must see episode for all people even if they are not fans of the show. Its a wonder that when people see episodes like this how this isn't an instant series classic. A+moreless
  • Homer tries to get Bart to think he is an awesome, exciting and good Dad. So when Bart tries to enter a robot fighting contest, Homer offers to build a robot.moreless

    I think this an Amazing, Grade A, Champion episode. It's a good, funny episode and that's why I watch "The Simpsons". I really like Homer and Bart, and I like Sporting events, robot fights aren't exactly a sport, but I thought this episode was interesting. It was good that Homer wanted to be a good Dad to Bart. Meanwhile, on the Marge and Lisa's side (The other side of the story), Snowball II (The Simpson's cat for most of the series died). Which I thought was sad. So Lisa gets Snowbal III, who shortly dies, and Snowball IV (Who Lisa calls Coltrane) shortly dies. I felt sad for Lisa because it was hopeless for her, but she found a cat on the street who looked exactly like Snowball II, and names it Snowball V, but acts like it is Snowball II. It's good that the The Simpsons family was happy then. All in all, this is why I like The Simpsons and rate it a 10 out of 10moreless
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

Pamela Hayden

Pamela Hayden

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

Recurring Role

Tress MacNeille

Tress MacNeille

Agnes Skinner, Brandine Del Roy, Dolph and others

Recurring Role

Karl Wiedergott

Karl Wiedergott

Additional Voices

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

  • QUOTES (28)

    • Bart: (After his bike is ran over by Dr. Hibbert) My bike! My crappy, crappy bike!

    • Dolph: (After being mooned by Bart, while on his bike) No one does this to Dolph. NO ONE!!!

    • Announcer: If robots can feel pain then we are horrible, horrible people.

    • Lisa: Mum, I'm not sure I'm ready for a new cat.
      Marge: (looking through a book) 'When Bad Things Happen to Cute Children' says that a new pet will pull you out of your sorrow cycle.
      Lisa: That book doesn't know how I feel!
      Marge: Oh, it's very wise. It's written by a Rabbi… who surfs!

    • Homer: Robot, I command you: do something cool!
      (Robot throws it's head at Homer, then falls apart)

    • Bart: (reading a note from Homer) Dear Bart. If this robot doesn't prove I love you, then you can both go to hell.

    • Marge: (after Lisa said a prayer for Coltrane) And Lord, if you think I'm making lemon bars for your bake sale, Sunday, you'd better stop killing our cats!
      Lisa: Mum, I'm not sure God responds to threats and intimidation.
      Marge: It's the only way to talk to bullies.

    • Homer: Son, did you ever suspect it was me?
      Bart: Well, you did disappear a lot but I've gone whole summers without seeing you.
      Homer: Heh heh heh… yeah, I'm pretty unreliable.

    • Sideshow Mel: That robot has given birth to a man!

    • Bart: Then Knock-A-Homer did three victory laps and pretended to drink a beer.
      Homer: He-he-he, pretended.
      Lisa: Dad, what are all those cuts?
      Homer: Various bug bites and wounds now stop interrupting your brother.

    • Lisa: Well, I think it's only fair I get to name him. You got to name me.
      Marge: You should be glad I did. Your father wanted to call you Bartzena.

    • Homer: I'll assemble it myself!
      Bart: Dad, no! Think of the bike!
      Homer: I can make a bike! I made you!
      Bart: Yeah, great workmanship (dislocates his arm)
      Homer: Hey, that's gonna win you a lot of bar-bets some day.

    • Homer: Son would you like to ride your new bike out of the store?
      Bart: Can I? For true?
      Homer: For true, son!

    • Homer: Wait a minute, what is it my dad always said to me?
      Grandpa: (appearing in a speech bubble) If you can't build a robot, be a robot!
      Homer: That's it!

    • (while building Bart a bike)
      Homer: Man, this is so confusing! (holding up a tire) What the hell is this?

    • Bart: Okay, I've been studying Frinks' robot and I've discovered he has one small weak spot. (sees Frinks' robot getting a spike plate installed) Uh-oh, his weak spot is now his strongest point.
      Homer: (inside the robot) OOOOHHHHHH!!!
      Bart: That moan sounded almost human…
      Homer: (from inside the robot) THE HELL IT DID!!

    • Homer (building the robot): I could quit now, but then my son never would look up to me. Oooh, why was I born a dad?

    • Homer: (the robot hands Homer a drink) He knows just how I like my martinis; full of alcohol.

    • Homer: (is injured in the Robot ring) Ha ho! Doing it for the boy. Doing it for the boy. Pain is love. To bleed is to care!

    • Nelson: HA HA! Your dad's not handy!

    • Marge: Aww sweetie, when I was your age I lost my guinea pig, Cinnamon, and I thought the pain would never - ahhh! (crying) Cinnamon! It should have been me who chewed through that extension cord!

    • Homer: A 10-speed bike? What did your mother say?
      Bart: She said yes.
      Marge (yelling from the kitchen): I said no!
      Homer: I'm confused, which is it?
      Marge: It's no! His old bike is fine!
      Homer: Yeah, the kitchen lady is right, your old bike still works.

    • Ned: That is one bitchin' bike.
      Rod: Daddy said a cuss word!
      Ned: Lighten up, Roddy.

    • Moe: (in the 'Robot Rumble' audience) Aww geez, I'm the only one in the audience over fifteen.
      Teenager: Are you here with your children sir?
      Moe: Uh, yeah, my two kids. (raises his fists) Screw and You.

    • Lisa: I'm keeping you! You're Snowball 5, but to save money on a new dish, we'll just call you Snowball II and pretend this whole thing never happened.
      Principal Skinner: That's really a cheat, isn't it?
      Lisa: I guess you're right, Principal Tanzarian.
      Principal Skinner: I'll just be moving along, Lisa. Snowball II.

    • Announcer 1: He's killing him softly with his saw!
      Announcer 2: Killing him softly?
      Announcer 1: With his saw!

    • Bart: I'm riding a unicycle with my pants down… this should be every boys' dream!

    • Homer: Bart, all that button ever did was send a mild electric shock up my backside.
      Bart: Why did you make it do that?
      Homer: To keep me focused.

  • NOTES (10)

    • Jessica Lovejoy makes a cameo appearance in this episode, her first appearance on the show in nearly 10 years.

    • This is Homer's third failed attempt at making a robot (i.e., "Homer the Moe" and mentioned in "Itchy and Scratchy Land").

    • Skinner's real last name is Tamzarian. Just want to point out if no one knows yet...Skinner is Armenian.

    • 3rd appearance of the crazy cat lady.

    • Coltrane has a hairdo similar to Bart Simpson.

    • Prof. Frink's son was first seen in "Brother Can You Spare Two Dimes".

    • Lisa violates the law declared at the end of "The Principal and The Pauper" stating that no one was to refer to Skinner being a fake.

    • Snowball II dies and is eventually replaced by Snowball V. Snowball V just happens to look exactly like Snowball II, and Lisa rationalizes calling the new cat Snowball II and pretending the whole thing never happened. This is a classic device that the Simpsons uses whenever a normal episode (non-Halloween), does something that changes the show in a significant but unpopular way (in fact she makes reference to Skinner being fake).

    • The "Annoyed Grunt" in the title translates to "D'oh".

    • Blackboard Joke: None.
      Couch Gag: In the living room the couch is replaced by a giant cake. A pair of hands comes down with a cake decorating tube and begins to use it to decorate the top of the cake with the various family members.

  • ALLUSIONS (15)

    • Bart: This butt's for you.
      Bart spoofs the classic Budweiser advertisement slogan, "This Bud's for you," when he moons Jimbo, Dolph and Kearney on his bike and utters the aforementioned line.

    • In the commercial featuring Killhammad Aieee, he's fighting a robot identical to the one at the end of the 1984 film "The Terminator."

    • Homer and Bart watch videotapes of fighting robots, one of which is labeled "KillHammed Aii vs. Circuit Ray Leonard." This is a play on the names of boxers Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard.

    • As Lisa is about to adopt Coltrane, she says she likes him because of his name and later asks if he would like to listen to something by his namesake. We know Lisa likes jazz music, so the name of the cat is a reference to John Coltrane (1926-1967) who was an American jazz saxophonist and composer.

    • The Jetson's episode "One Strike You´re Out" has a similar subplot: George accidentally breaks a robot that Elroy built for a school marathon, and disguises himself as the robot.

    • A deeply-saddened Lisa (along with the rest of her family) dress up in their Sunday best to pay Snowball II – and his hapless successors – their final respects, much like the Huxtables did in The Cosby Show episode, "Goodbye, Mr. Fish."

    • Grandpa Simpson: If you cant build a robot, be a robot.
      In the "Steel" episode of The Twilight Zone robots box each other instead of people. When the robot breaks down and can't be fixed, the lead character pretends to be a robot (and is beaten badly) just like Homer.

    • The song playing during the montage of robot fights is called "Watching Scotty Grow" by Bobby Goldsboro. It was also played during the soapbox construction montage of the episode "Saturdays of Thunder."

    • The title of the episode is a reference to the classic Isaac Asimov novel I, Robot. In this book, the three important rules that should govern robot behavior are introduced.

      Here are, paraphrased for the convenience of "today's busy idiot," Issac Asimov's Three Laws for Robots:

      Robots may not kill or injure human directly or through an action.

      Robots will obey commands given by humans except orders to kill or injure other humans.

      Robots must protect themselves to exist unless it harms humans and defies orders given by humans.

    • Snowball: The multiple cat deaths
      This is most likely a homage to the 1990 comedy film "Madhouse", where the family cat died multiple times. Snowball III drowns in aquarium, like in the movie.

    • Chief Knock-A-Homer's name may be inspired from the former mascot of the Atlanta Braves called Chief Noc-a-Homa.

    • Professor Frink and his son's robot looks similar to the ED-209 robot from the 1987 film RoboCop.

    • :
      The robot battle shows "Robot Wars" and "Battlebots" are sources of inspiration for "Robot Rumble."

    • ringside announcers: "Killing him softly. " "With his saw."
      A reference to the song "Killing Me Softly (With His Song)". A very big song for Roberta Flack in 1973 that has also been recorded by a number of other artists.

    • Announcer: Smashius Clay a.k.a. KIllHammed Ali!
      Professor Frink's robot is named after the famous boxer, Muhammad Ali, whose real name was Cassius Clay.