The Simpsons

Season 7 Episode 16

Lisa the Iconoclast

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Feb 18, 1996 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
177 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

As Springfield's bicentennial celebration approaches, Lisa discovers the real truth behind town founder, Jebediah Springfield and finds herself at odds with a protective museum curator who wants to keep Jebediah's unattractive past a secret. Meanwhile, Homer becomes obsessed with being the official town crier for the bicentennial celebration.moreless

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  • Perfect; Another Simpsons classic

    In this episode, Springfield is preparing to celebrate bicenental (200 year celebration) and there is much love for the town's fabled founder, Jebideah Springfield. Lisa's class is assigned to write a paper on Jebideah, and Lisa is excited to do so. However, when exploring the museum, Lisa finds a secret confession from Jebideah, explaining how he was nothing more than a fraud. Lisa tries to tell the rest of the town, but they won't listen to her, as she earns the town's hate. This was a great episode, probablly myfavorite from the season. Some people say that the ending stnks, but I think it's fine. 10/10 A+moreless
  • this was a good ep

    in this ep of the simpsons show lisa is doing a project on jebahia becasuse the day they celbrate the town hero and they have a parade homer wants to be the person that rings the bell and lias is doing her project and learns that jeb was a pirate that tried to kill washington and all his stories were lies. and lisa learns that from a museum and she has them dig up the body to find if he has a silver touge thing is he did but the museum cartaker already stole it to hide the truth he admits that and lisa goes to tell the people at the parade thing is she cant do it and says he was a hero. to the town even though she knew the truth a good epmoreless
  • Lisa the Iconoclast

    When doing a paper on Jebediah Springfield, the founder of Springfield, Lisa learns he was once a murderous pirate named Hans Sprungfield. But when she tries telling others, nobody will believe her. At the end she convinces the curator at the museum the truth, but she decides not to tell all of Springfield, because the lie would have made everyone mad and the whole town would probably end in a riot.

    Overall grade, A+, this has always been one of my favorites. Humor is spot on, great characterizations. Some people did not like the ending but I saw nothing wrongmoreless
  • Lisa as usual going against the establishment.

    I am not too fond of episodes in which Lisa Simpson is the main character or the driving force of the story. In this episode Lisa is as usual trying to find the truth and going against the rest of the people who don't really or don't want to know what it really is. The curator in this episode who we might call Lisa's alterego accepted the truth once he was confronted with hardcore facts. Something rather odd for a show like this in which usually the characters end up all kids of crazy things to avoid punishment. Something I noticed is that we didn't see much of Bart. Good story and only couple of laughs.moreless
  • A stupid ending, but a great plot none the less

    A noble spirit possesses the people of Springfield as they prepare for the town's bicentennial celebration. Always the iconoclast, Lisa discovers some new data about Jebediah Springfield, the town's legendary founder, that she feels she must share with everyone. According to Lisa's research, the saintly Jebediah was actually Hans Sprungfeld, a murderous pirate who tried to kill George Washington. Lisa confronts Hollis Hurlbut, the President of the Springfield Historical Society, with her findings, but Hurlbut sends her packing and bans her from his museum for three months. Lisa, with Homer's help, convinces Mayor Quimby to dig up the body of Jebediah Springfield to prove that he's not the same man as Sprungfeld. Quimby agrees, but when the body is exhumed, Hollis Hurlbut quickly steals the evidence so that no one believes Lisa. Later, Lisa finds out for sure that Hurlbut hid the evidence, but she allows the people of Springfield to go on celebrating Jebediah anyway, since the great man's legacy is more important than the actual facts of his life. Guest star: Donald Sutherland as Hollis Hurlbut.moreless
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

Donald Sutherland (I)

Donald Sutherland (I)

Hollis Hurlbut

Guest Star

Marcia Wallace

Marcia Wallace

Edna Krabappel

Recurring Role

Phil Hartman

Phil Hartman

Lionel Hutz, Troy McClure and Additional Voices

Recurring Role

Pamela Hayden

Pamela Hayden

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

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (17)

    • (Lisa turns to a table with four businessmen who are sponsoring the bicentennial)
      Lisa: I hope you know you're sponsoring a celebration for a murderous pirate.
      Sponsor: A pirate?! Well that's hardly the image we want for Long John Silver's!

    • Lisa: Hi Apu! Can I put this poster in your window?
      Apu: Well of course you can, you little Pixy. You are just as sweet as the Stix which bear your name.
      (Apu notices Lisa's poster as she's putting up)
      Apu: (Gasp) No no, no no no! Take that down! As a semi-legal immigrant, your poster could land me in a predicament as Red Hot as the candies which bear that name.

    • (Jebediah Springfield's coffin has just been opened, everybody gasps)
      Chief Wiggum: Jebediah Springfield has been replaced with a skeleton!
      Hollis Hurlbut: No, that's the skeleton of Jebediah.

    • Homer: You su-diddely-uck, Flanders!….Hear ye, hear ye! Ye olde town crier proclaimed crappy by all! Chooseth Homer Simpson, and he shalt rock thy world!
      Chief Wiggum: Good God, he is fabulous.
      Principal Skinner: Yes, he's embiggened that role with his cromulent performance.

    • Lisa: How about town crier? You'd be great at that.
      Homer: You think so?
      Bart: Well, yeah, Dad, you're a big fat loudmouth and you can walk when you have to.

    • Jebediah Springfield: A noble spirit "embiggens" the smallest man.
      Edna: Embiggens? I never heard that word before I moved to Springfield
      Ms. Hoover: I don't know why. It's a perfectly "cromulent" word.

    • (inside Moe's Tavern)
      Moe: Barney, show 'em the exit.
      Barney: There's an exit!?

    • Lisa: I'd like 25 copies on Goldenrod.
      Clerk: Right.
      Lisa: 25 on Canary.
      Clerk: Mmhmm.
      Lisa: 25 on Saffron.
      Clerk: All right.
      Lisa: And 25 on Paella.
      Clerk: Ok, 100 yellow.

    • Hollis Hurlbutt: Get out! You're banned from this Historical Society. You, and your children, and your children's children! ... For three months.

    • Homer: Hear ye! Hear ye! What's for breakfast?
      Marge: Toast.
      Homer: I can't understand thee.
      Marge: Ugh... Ye olde toast.
      Homer: Oooh!

    • Lisa: Just when I was getting over my Chester A. Arthritis.

    • Ralph: Can you open my milk, Mommy?
      Miss Hoover: I'm not mommy, Ralph. I'm Miss Hoover.

    • (Bart overhears Lisa talking in her sleep)
      Bart: "I want to help you, George Washington"? Even your dreams are square.

    • Mayor Quimby: Can't we have one meeting that doesn't end with us digging up a corpse?

    • Homer: I've been called a greasy thug, too. It never stops hurting. So here's what we're gonna do: We're gonna grease ourselves up real good and trash that place with a baseball bat.

    • Homer: Less chat, more hat!

    • Kearney: Those tall ships really lifted the nation's spirits after Watergate.

  • NOTES (4)

    • The words "cromulent" and "embiggen" were both coined by the writers of this episode. Although completely made up, these words have since taken on a life of their own via the Internet and other media. "Cromulent" has also appeared in the Webster's New Millennium Dictionary of English.

    • Ironically Donald Sutherland played the character Homer Simpson in the 1975 film "The Day of the Locust."

    • "Hollis" and "Hurlbut" are freshman dormitories at Harvard.

    • Blackboard Joke: None.
      Couch Gag: The screen is divided into squares with 9 squares featuring (in this order, starting with the top left) Lisa, Marge, Grandpa, Maggie, The Living Room, Bart, Snowball, Homer, Santa's Little Helper. It is very similar to The Brady Bunch opening. They look at each other also reminiscent of The Brady Bunch. They all run to the couch, leaving grandpa snoozing in his square.

      The episode ends with a special original song over the credits.


    • The Producers
      Lisa going into Moe's Tavern to tell the patrons that Jebediah Springfield was a fraud, and their reactions (mouths gaping open) is a direct allusion to the famous scene in the Mel Brooks' film The Producers showing an audience with the same reaction.

    • Chester A. Arthur
      Lisa jokingly claims she has "Chester A. Arthritis" in the historical society. This is a reference to the twenty first president of the United States: Chester A. Arthur.