The Simpsons: Season 18, Episode 10 – “The Wife Aquatic”

220px-simpsons1810.pngCouch Gag: The couch is a poster hanging on a wall and an unknown hand pins up the Simpsons onto it.

Number of times I laughed: 5

Plot: Springfield is having a free, outdoor silent movie gala, but the bullies find it to be a tad dull – “This movie isn’t silent, I can hear it sucking.” – So they throw beets at the film projector (run by Rod and Todd) until the film breaks. Having a canister of old vacation footage, Selma and Patty throw it into the projector. The film is of an old vacation to Barnacle Bay, a place they all went to as children. It is near and dear to Marge and she reminisces about it prompting Homer to burn the film onto DVD and then onto an iPod. However, Homer is unable to get it burned into the iPod and so he decides to take the family to Barnacle Bay.

After years of neglect the bay is no longer a vacationer’s paradise, but a run down slum (the worst place they’ve been to, except Brazil says Lisa.) The ever sweet Homer refurbishes an old merry-go-round and creates a lovely fireworks display just for Marge. Unfortunately one of the fireworks lights the dock on fire and burns it to the ground, er sea. The townspeople string Homer up on a fish hook and then have their picture taken next to him as you would a giant fish.

Marge talks them into letting Homer go on the condition that he will pay for the dock by fishing. Out at sea Homer decides it is opposite day and fixes bait for supper and beer batters the hooks. The beer attracts the Yum-Yum fish (which was the town’s glory-days attraction before they suddenly disappeared) and the boat has a grand day. This lasts only moments as a “perfect storm” rises and capsizes the boat.

Thinking the men are all dead, the town holds a funeral for them until they all show up again unharmed (having been saved by some Japanese fishermen.) We then get a little moral lesson about over fishing to which the town learns not to fish, but to destroy all of their trees to sell to Larry Flynt’s pornography company.

Rating: *1/2

What a waste of a half hour. The writers not only forget to write a decent story, but forgot that this is supposed to be funny and left most of the jokes at home. The Perfect Storm is six years old, and mostly forgotten by now, so why they chose this to parody is beyond me. The Simpsons have often thrown awful little moral lessons at us before, so I should be used to it by now, but this one really stunk it up. The plot rambled. It resembled a plot, but it used their old device of having one dumb gag (the free movie) exist for the sole reason of moving them to another dumb gag. I kept waiting for one of them to say “the Simpsons are going to an island.” I laughed a few times, but just barely.

Trivia:

  • The title is a reference to the film The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou.
  • The main plot is a parody of The Perfect Storm.
  • The song played when Homer starts clubbing yum-yum fish is “At Last” by Etta James.
  • While going to the Barnacle Bay museum, Marge and Lisa pass an exhibit called “The Science of Spongebob”.

32 thoughts on “The Simpsons: Season 18, Episode 10 – “The Wife Aquatic”

  1. with life aquatic being one of my favorite films ever, i was deeply disappointed that the show’s title was only that.
    i did laugh a lot though – esp at the yum yum clubbing scene…
    also the “should I bash him in the head with a shovel” bit
    … marge not realizing bart was on the boat…
    … making marge a dvd for her emotional memory…
    … lenny knowing some guy he doesn’t know is in trouble, then not going to help…
    … there were other spots but not all that memorable.

    but the perfect storm bit was lame

  2. I’m glad you dug it. The Perfect Storm bit was lame and the title was totally misleading. I laughed a handful of times but honestly not that hard.

    Thanks for the comment.

  3. Does anyone here know the name of the song played during the Marge’s childhood video…the same song is played when Homer sees the Mermaids. I think it’s a famous French composition, but I cannot remember the name or composer…

  4. I thought the episode had the one or two laughs that keep me coming back for more.
    Does anyone know why George Clooney did not do the voice of the ship captain? Or did he do it and use another name?

  5. Thanks for the comments folks. Picadelic, I have no idea if Clooney was asked or was interested or what. My guess would be they just thought the spoof was funny and had no intentions of asking any of the players to join. But that’s a guess.

    Thanks Overtheocean, I actually think my wife may have a copy of that laying around here somewhere.

  6. I thought this episode was funnier than you gave it credit for, though honestly it didn’t live up to the season’s standards.
    I thought the music was from Star Wars Ep. 1 (which the show has already borrowed music from, see S18EP03 Please Homer, Don’t Hammer ‘Em), the scene where Jar Jar Binks escorts Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon to the Gungan city… but thanks for proving me wrong.

  7. Thanks for the comment Raven. Yeah, comedy is obviously subjective, so its great that you liked it a little more. It definitely seemed less funny that what the rest of the season has been (which is a total improvement over about the last five seasons.) I’m really bad about picking out songs from episodes, but my lovely readers seem to be pretty good at it.

  8. it’s the simpsons ergo beter than than anything else showing it’s face on the tube … we’re all spoilt. the shittest simpsons is still better than another fucking episode of ‘the wedge’ let’s face it. cheerios, shyster

  9. The song that plays during Marge’s child hood memories is also a slowed down version of the music that used to play on Disneyland’s Space Mountain about 10 years ago. Don’t ask me how I know that.

  10. this here is one of my favourite episodes, season 18 is imho far the best, and this is one of the top episodes, it really pulled out some laughs from my side.

    the piano theme of this episode (runs several times) (and also mentioned above) is:

    Camille Saint-Saens: Carnival of the animals, The Aqarium

  11. I loved this episode. This will sound strange, but does anyone know what the song is that is playing during Marge’s childhood video of her trip to barnacle bay? It is driving me crazy!

  12. i am quite sure i’ve heard Aquarium in some other movie (maybe a Disney movie?). has anyone else heard this music (or something quite similar) in another movie? please email me at jason[dot]a[dot]keeling[at]gmail[dot]com

  13. Does anyone know what the song is with the irish bagpipes in it? and what other movie its in? I know its in a action or thriller type movie but cant remember which one and its killing me!

  14. What is the classical song that is repeatedly used in this episode? First time it appears is when patty and selma play their video…
    any ideas??

  15. To the wonderful writer of this article…thanks so much for giving me that soundtrack “At Last” by Etta James! Your a star.

  16. THE CLASSICAL PIANO SONG [technically a portion of a Suite]IN THIS EPISODE IS :

    ‘The Aquarium’

    Composed by Camille Saint-Saëns in France during the year 1886.

    It is part of the ‘Carnival of Animals’, a suite of uplifting and enchanting music for children at the time, and its composition still tantalises us several decades later!

    Link for more information:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Carnival_of_the_Animals

  17. Does anyone know the name of the song that is played when homer and the ships crew are sailing over the huge wave? i think it had trumpets in it.

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