The Simpsons

Season 3 Episode 9

Saturdays of Thunder

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Nov 14, 1991 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (10)

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out of 10
253 votes
  • Hey, Bart, I think they're finally hauling your dad away

    As is expected of season 3, this is another highly character-driven distinct episode that while the premise isn't as known as well as others in season 3, it's still very captivating as one of the few good Homer/Bart bonding episodes ("Brother From the Same Planet" and "King of the Hill" being the only others I can think of). I certainly didn't see Homer's behavior as "jerkass". Like AB said, Homer tried to be a loving father to Bart by helping him with his soapbox racer but felt betrayed when Bart agreed to take Martin's racer. Perhaps a bit immature, but Homer's an immature person, and it's not as though he doesn't redeem himself anyway. The jokes were great too, from the already mentioned attempts at the Fatherhood Quotient tests by Homer, to the "Ben Hur" homage (even if perhaps the most overdone parody in cartoons), Patty with the "Mary Tyler Moore" haircut, the McBain video, and the opening with "I Can't Believe They Invented It". Might make my top 50, and if not certainly borders on it.
  • Another classic.


    Bart becomes deeply immersed in competitive soapbox racing while Homer begins to realize that he's not as good a father as he thought. After attending a lecture at National Fatherhood Institute, Homer becomes a more attentive father, helping Bart build the ultimate soapbox racer. But Bart decides not to use it in his big race against Nelson Muntz, instead opting to borrow Martin Prince's scientifically engineered aerodynamic racer.

    10 out of 10

  • perfect


    what i liked- homer realizing he knows squat about his son and proclaiming he is a bad dad, and then selma reminds him that he's 'also fat', the ending of the episode, someone being trapped in nelson's car (hey what was that?), martin crashing, bart and homer bonding, amongst other things.

    good episode. i like when homer and bart bond and it was handled in a really fun way for the viewer to enjoy. great episode from a great season, overall grade going to be an A+

  • this was a good ep of the simpsons

    in this ep of the simpsons bart is excited about the race car derby and is being very competive and homer wants to help but he realizes he does not know his son very well so he goes to a father instituet and then comes back to be very acetive for his son but bart and homer build a race car thing is bart does not use it at all insted he uses marten scientific race car instead and bart is just happy for his father to come out and root him onl this was a good ep i thought good father and son ep
  • Another Homer and child episode, following the last one.

    Last episode was Homer and Lisa, now it's Homer and Bart. After Homer gets a zero on a good father sort of test, he decides to spend more time on Bart and his hobby. His hobby is apparently racing cars, and Homer and Bart build there own car together. But, after seeing an oppurtunity to use a better car to win against Nelson, he ends up using a more high tech car instead of the one Homer and him making Homer sad.... but in the end after Homer gets a 100 on the test after a re-take he still goes and cheers Bart on, and Bart wins. I thought this episode was slightly better than the last one because it had more comedy in it, as well as the emotionally touching develoment between Homer and Bart.
  • This season is very emotional thus far; so many touching episodes. This one relates to father and son.

    After Homer fails a National Fatherhood test, he concludes that he's a bad father. He spends more time with Bart, helping him build a Soapbox Derby racer. At the qualifying race, Bart's car doesn't even cross the finishing ling. Martin's model easily wins, but he loses control and crashes. He breaks his arm and cannot enter the final race against Nelson. He asks Bart to race for him and Bart accepts. Homer feel's betrayed, deciding to ride Martin's car rather than the car the two built together. Homer takes the test again, but this time passes. He runs to the final race and cheers Bart along in Martin's racer. He blasts past Nelson and wins the race.
  • Epic episode. Or... epicsode.

    One of my all-time favorite episodes. In this episode, Bart decides to build a soap box derby racer. Homer, meanwhile, takes a test to see how good of a father he is. He gets a score of a zero. Homer finally tries to help out Bart with his soap box derby racer, but Brat doesn't let him. Homer helps anyways, and Bart participates in the soap box derby with his racer, Li'l Lightnin', and races against Martin Prince and Nelson Muntz. Martin Prince gets seriously injured, and he asks Bart to race for him in the finals. Bart decides to, and wins.

    "Saturdays of Thunder" is a superb episode. One of the season's and series's best episodes.
  • Bart takes Martin's place in a soapbox race against Nelson.

    Marge gives Homer a test from the National Fatherhood Institute to evaluate his performance as a father. Homer fails the test and cuncludes that he is not a good father. He signs up for therapy and offers to help Bart build a soapbox racer. At the qualifing race, Bart's car doesn't even cross the finish line. Martin Prince's car crashes and he asks Bart to race against Nelson for him, since he has broken his arm. However, Homer is sad that Bart chooses Martin's car instead of the one he built. Despite being in Martin's car, Bart does not have his heart in the race. Homer takes the fatherhood test again, and this time since he helped Bart with his soapbox car, he answers all the questions correctly. He rushes to the track to watch Bart and Bart passes Nelson and wins the race.
  • Bart becomes a champion soap box racer.

    Homer fails a test that tells whether or not you are a good father. This prompts him to see whether or not Bart has any hobbies. He goes to the garage to see Bart building a soap box car. He pledges to help Bart make a winner but his car is of poor quality. Bart sees Martin's car and is amazed. Martin breaks his arm while racing and asks Bart to be the driver. Bart accepts, leaving Homer betrayed. Homer refuses to watch the championship race. Then, he finally is able to pass the test given to him earlier. He goes and supports his son and Bart wins the race and also wins his dad's heart.
  • homer realises he should spend more time with bart when he gets a zero on the test to see if you're a good father

    this episode contains a lot of themes including betrayal, victory and humour. after homer helps bart build a soapbox racer that doesn't work at all, bart abandons the racer he and his father made together and drives martin's instead. homer starts ignoring bart and doesn't go with him to the race. however, in the end, he comes to his senses and tries the test once more with an appearance of ned flanders where homer thinks a good father is one that asks a question about their kids and then drive off before they get an answer. this was a humerous episode and the triumphant rubbing nelson's face in it at the end was a great ending.