The Simpsons

Season 19 Episode 11

That '90s Show

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Jan 27, 2008 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
314 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

That '90s Show
Homer and Marge tell the children a chapter of their relationship that involves Marge's going to college and Homer's inventing "grunge" music.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • That 90s Show

    I loved the style so much, the funny thing that the show already spend a big deal in the 90s itself, Still good parody :)
  • It's a freezing cold night in Springfield and Homer did not pay the heating bill. To keep warm the family starts builds a fire using old keepsakes in lieu of wood. While getting fuel for the fire, Lisa finds Marge's college degree. A flashback begins.moreless

    As another reviewer pointed out The Simpsons has had a pretty good track record in regards to its many flashback episodes. This particular episode is not terrible but its not as good as the ones we have seen before it. There are some very funny jokes and scenes here (My favorite scene being the one where Homer blows up the Oxygen Bar), but it does have it's flaws. One big flaw is the professor Marge develops a crush on. I didn't find him funny at all and his look at history is something I didn't care for. A mediocre episode.moreless
  • It's not that it was bad for continuity

    It's just the episode was bad for a plot. I don't care for continuity at all, but this episode just plain wasn't funny. It had some decent parts, sure, but even with some decent parts it doesn't get above a C+ from me.

    Those that care about continuity often times find this the single worst in the show's history. I wouldn't go that far at all. Certainly one of the worst in the season.

    So, it has some mildly funny parts, like the Futurama reference, why "Lord of the Rings can never be filmed", stuff like that, but those are just references.

  • This episode is the worst flashback episode and one of the worst in the series.

    This episode is my least favorite episode of the Simpsons. I had seen some clips of it and I knew it would involve Marge and Homer's relationship in the '90's. I thought it would still be a good episode even though it broke the continuity, but I ended up hating it. The plot was not entertaining at all. It was boring and mundane. The jokes didn't make me laugh once, and there were things that irritated me to no end, like Bart saying that he never heard of the '90's and the way Marge treated Homer. I got to the point where I wanted to turn the television off. Overall,this episode was heavily disappointing.moreless
  • Longtime Simpsons fans...

    Should love this episode.

    There are two essential reasons why.

    1.) Longtime fans of the Simpsons probably lived through the 1990s. I did, and I've been watching since the first episode. I can relate to the jokes, although they might be dated/stale/recycled, so are jokes about the 1970s, the 1980s, and some day, the 2000s. I can remember thinking "what an awful President Bill Clinton is" because of all his stupid lying, and I now look back and know it could have been MUCH worse. And grunge music deserves a beating, no matter how much it's already gotten. They also put the Simpsons twist on those 90s fads and stereotypes (Homer's OD; the origin of 'grunge').

    2.) AS FOR those "fans" who complain about the writers' "raping" the show's history, keep in mind that if Homer and Marge met in HIGH SCHOOL in the 1970s, then they would now be in their 50s (like my parents), and the EARLY show writers and CREATORS (reference the DVD commentary in "Bart Gets an F") consciously decided to keep the characters from aging. How do you reconcile your maniacal devotion to the Simpsons 'canon' without acknowledging the fact that Bart is not now, like me, in his 30s? Furthermore, take note that there was a gap in the earliest flashbacks ("The Way We Was," season 2, and "I Married Marge," season 3) between Homer & Marge meeting and their marriage, which the writers are cleverly exploiting with an update here.

    Case in point: "I Married Marge," during which Marge is pregnant with Bart, most likely takes place during summer 1980 (hence Homer's "I Shot JR" shirt), while "Lisa's First Word" takes place during 1984, despite Bart being two years old. Were the writers of "Lisa's First Word" guilty of rape because they were using the already-existing sliding timeline to keep the characters the same age? Of course not.

    Grow up and get lives, people! Or, if you're going to be anal retentive about facts in a cartoon and hold up certain seasons as "holy," review them and make sure they do not contradict you! At the very least, THINK before you react to an episode of a TV show--a 20 year old cartoon where nobody has aged for 20 years!

    Good job, Simpsons writers!moreless
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

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

Dan Castellaneta

Dan Castellaneta

Homer Simpson, Grampa Simpson, Barney Gumble, Krusty the Clown, Groundskeeper Willie, and others

Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al Yankovic


Guest Star

Kurt Loder

Kurt Loder


Guest Star

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 (3)

  • QUOTES (15)

    • Marge: (gasps as she bursts into Homer's mansion) Oh, my god, you're a junkie!
      Homer: (moaning) I need it...
      Marge: I'm getting you off this stuff!
      Homer: But I need it!
      Marge: No, you don't!
      (Flash back to the present)
      Marge: Unfortunately, as I later learned, that wasn't heroin. It was insulin. Homer really did need those injections.
      Homer: I had become diabetic from drinking too many Frappuccinos.

    • Marge: Hey, parents are allowed to keep some secrets.
      Homer: Yeah, like which kid's their favorite. (whispering) It's Lisa.

    • (Flashback)
      Homer: You know, these Ikea foam futons do velcro together . . .
      Marge: I'm sorry, I don't want to do that yet. I want to wait until I'm married, or at least really drunk.

    • Lisa: Mom! I didn't know you went to college!
      Bart: Yeah, you always said that after high school, Dad blessed you with the unplanned miracle of me!

    • (Overheard at Springfield University.)
      Young Comic Book Guy: And that is why The Lord of the Rings can never be filmed!

    • (Marge enters Professor Stephan's library.)
      Marge: Have you really read all these books?
      Professor Stephan: Morally I couldn't display them on my shelves if I hadn't. But I watch sports as well, just like a regular man.
      (Professor Stephan turns out the TV to a football game.)
      Professor Stephan: Good goddess! The Patriots are deep in Redskin territory. This isn't entertainment, it's genocide! (Sobs)

    • (A depressed Homer looks at Marge, happy with another man.)
      Homer: (Sighs) Seeing Marge always reminds me of Marge.

    • (Moe tries stealing a man's watch, but the man sees him.)
      Moe: Oh, I wasn't trying to steal your watch. I--I--I was just coming on to you.
      Man at Bar: Okay, let's go back to my place.
      Moe: Oh, boy.

    • (The Simpsons are all huddled up near the fireplace.)
      Marge: We wouldn't be in this trouble if you just paid the heating bill!
      Homer: I thought global warming would take care of it it. Al Gore can't do anything right.

    • Marge: I can't believe I got in. It's like a dream come true! An expensive dream. (Sighs)
      (Marge looks at letter saying that the annual cost for the college is $3000.)

    • Marge: There is a part of our past that we haven't told you kids about. A turbulent part.
      Bart: Come on. More turbulent than now?
      Lisa: We're in every kind of therapy!
      Homer: Things happened between your mother and me that we're not proud of. It was the middle of a wild decade known as the 1990's.
      Bart: The '90s? Never heard of it.

    • Homer: He who is tired of Weird Al is tired of life.

    • Homer: (narrating) I had finally realized every rock star's dream. Hating being famous.

    • Marge: Did you know that every U.S. president has been a straight white man?
      Homer: Even Walt Disney?

    • Homer: You applied to college? Why didn't you tell me?
      Marge: I did tell you.
      Homer: I thought you were telling me you wanted to apply yourself to making a collage! And as I recall, I was against it.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Blackboard Joke: None
      Couch Gag: A portrait of the family on the couch hangs in display inside a French museum. The caption reads: "Ceci n'est pas une couch gag." Meaning: "This is not a couch gag". This references the painting The Treachery of Images by Rene Magritte. The painting is one of a pipe with a caption below that reads, "This is not a pipe" in French.


    • Homer: He who is tired of Weird Al is tired of life.
      Homer's line is very similar to Samuel Johnson's saying, "When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life."

    • Color Me Badd
      Even though Homer's singing group is singing a parody of "I'll Make Love To You" by Boys II Men, their hairstyles mirror those of the 90's boy band Color Me Badd.

    • Nirvana
      Homer's first song in the episode is set to the tune of Nirvana's "Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge On Seattle."

      Homer's second song, "Shave Me", is a parody of the Nirvana song, "Rape Me".

    • Seinfeld
      While Marge reads and Homer watches TV, you can hear the famous Seinfeld music and Homer saying famous/popular Seinfeld quotes/lines.

    • Kurt Cobain
      Homer realizing that he's made it because Weird Al is parodying his songs is a nod to the fact that Kurt Cobain once said that he knew Nirvana had made it big when Weird Al asked to parody "Smells Like Teen Spirit."

    • Popeye
      One of the students in Marge's Cultural History class is designed to look like a female version of Popeye.

    • Bush
      Sadgasm's song, "Margerine", is a parody of the grunge song "Glycerine" by Bush.

    • Back to the Future
      While Homer and his band play on campus at Springfield University, Marvin Cobain calls his cousin Kurt Cobain and holds the phone up to the concert to show him a new sound. All in the same fashion that Marvin Berry calls his cousin Chuck while Marty McFly is on stage singing "Johnny B. Goode" in the 1985 film Back to the Future.

    • That '70s Show
      The title of this episode is a play on the title of another FOX television series, That '70s Show.

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