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Clown in the Dumps (The Simpsons)

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Clown in the Dumps (The Simpsons)
This episode is in the dumps and should be left there.
Series: The Simpsons
Part of Season: 26
Episode Number: 1
Air Date: September 28, 2014
Writer: Joel H. Cohen
Director: Steven Dean Moore
Previous episode: The Yellow Badge of Cowardge
Next episode: The Simpsons Guy / The Wreck of the Relationship

"Clown in the Dumps" is the season premiere of the twenty-sixth season of the American animated television series, The Simpsons, and the 553rd episode of the series overall. It first aired in the United States on the Fox network on September 28, 2014, with "The Simpsons Guy", a crossover episode of Family Guy with The Simpsons, airing afterward. This episode was dedicated in memory of Louis Castellaneta, the father of The Simpsons the voice actor Dan Castellaneta. It was written by Joel H. Cohen and directed by Steven Dean Moore, with Don Hertzfeldt directing a sequence in the opening titles. Jeff Ross, Sarah Silverman, and David Hyde Pierce guest-starred as themselves, with Jackie Mason and Kelsey Grammer reprising their respective roles as Rabbi Krustofski and Sideshow Bob, while Maurice LaMarche voiced several minor characters.


Krusty the Clown appears on a comedy roast by Jeff Ross and Sarah Silverman and is offended by them. He seeks the advice of his father, Rabbi Krustofski, on whether he is funny; the Rabbi says he always thought he was "eh..." and dies suddenly, right before he's about to tell Krusty what he thinks of his comedy. As his father's last words seemed to be dismissive and believing that nobody finds him funny anymore, Krusty quits his show.

Bart attempts to reinspire Krusty by showing him old episodes of the show, but he picks up on the repetitive nature of his jokes, and binge drinks in anger. He passes out and has a vision of himself in Jewish Heaven, where he meets Rodney Dangerfield. Rabbi Krustofski then appears and tells Krusty that Jews do not believe in Heaven, and thus he should do more to help others. An act of kindness does not seem to make him happier, but Bart takes Krusty to the synagogue, where Rabbi Krustofski's favorite Rabbi recites Krusty's jokes on religion. Krusty, therefore, deduces that his father did find him funny, and sees him again in Jewish Heaven, where Jesus turns Dangerfield's water into a Bloody Mary.

Triggered by the death of Krusty's father, Lisa becomes obsessed with protecting her father, Homer, from getting hurt. She wraps him in bubble wrap, which ends up saving his life when Otto's school bus plows into the garden. Eventually, Marge and Bart talk some sense into Lisa, that while it is nice of her to be concerned for her father, she should not force Homer to take it easy on himself and just let him live his life.

Why It's In the Dumps

  1. The episode was another gigantic rating trap, Just Like Life of Brian from Family Guy. The advertisements made it seem like a major, beloved character was going to be killed in the episode, but in reality, the character that gets killed off is the one who barely had any major appearances.
  2. The episode in general is offensive to people who are Jewish. In other words, it’s antisemitic.
  3. The plot uses emotional manipulation, similar to the Family Guy episode Life of Brian.
    • Even the image used to promote this episode (see above) looks nearly identical to the image used to promote Family Guy’s 12th Season DVD, really showing how much of a pointless rip-off this is.
  4. It is very mean-spirited towards Krusty. On top of nobody feeling sorry for him after his father’s death, the episode has celebrities like Sarah Silverman and Jeff Ross roasting him, wasting their talents. Not to mention the ending shows Ross still roasting Krusty.
  5. Numerous plot holes. For example: How did Krusty's father die?
  6. The subplot of Lisa trying to protect Homer from dying after the death of Krusty's dad is not that interesting, despite it showing that Lisa does care about her father.
  7. The jokes are either cruel, over the top, or painfully unfunny in this episode.
  8. Krusty's father's death is cheesy, depressing, and lame.
  9. It’s an episode where people disrespect the people who’ve passed away.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Don Hertzfeldt's (better known for creating the animated short film Rejected) couch gag is more interesting than the episode itself. See for yourself.
  2. As stated above, the side plot shows that Lisa cares about Homer.
  3. Though it is a gigantic rating trap, one of the promos on TV for this episode DOES show Krusty's father as one of the people that will die, so this episode is not misleading at all.



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