Hello and welcome to Laughing Place’s regular recap of new episodes of The Simpsons on the FOX network. This week’s episode, the 11th installment of the long-running animated sitcom’s 32nd season, is entitled “The Dad-Feelings Limited,” a reference to the 2007 Wes Anderson film The Darjeeling Limited.
Chalkboard gag: None.
Couch gag: None.
We open at Comic Book Guy’s (voiced by Hank Azaria) apartment above the Android’s Dungeon comic book shop, where he and his wife Kumiko (Jenny Yokobori) are enjoying breakfast burritos and scones. Homer (Dan Castellaneta) and Marge (Julie Kavner) Simpson bang on the door of the closed shop below, wanting to buy birthday presents for the multiple parties they are attending that day. Homer grabs some free newspapers as gifts and they leave, while CBG and Kumiko head out for a Sunday together. They enjoy tea in silence, and we cut to the Simpsons at a birthday party, where Bart (Nancy Cartwright) bounces in an inflatable castle. CBG and Kumiko dance at an outdoor concert while the Simpsons attend a noisy arcade, etc. “I need to be around grown-ups,” says an exhausted Marge.
Ned Flanders (Harry Shearer) shows up for a last-minute dinner invitation that turns out to be a scam to get him to babysit Maggie, while Marge and Homer go to Moe’s Tavern for a trivia night, where they join CBG and Kumiko’s team. Moe (Azaria again) hosts trivia, but CBG doesn’t know any of the sports or vacuum cleaner-related questions, so he finds the Simpson parents to be surprisingly helpful in coming up with the answers. Their team “Han Shot First” and CBG toasts to “fat guys with hot wives.” Marge and Kumiko bond over wearing ponchos while their husbands eat dinner. She invites her new friend over to show off her housekeeping tips, but Kumiko is at a loss when tasked with taking care of Maggie. “I don’t know anything about babies except how to dress like one!” She ends up being a natural at calming Maggie with her singing voice, and she runs home to demand CBG impregnate her at once.
CBG doesn’t want children to play with his toys, but is almost seduced by Kumiko’s “sexy Gremlin” cosplay. He resists and the couple disagree about the future of their relationship. At the Simpson home, Marge and Homer discuss Kumiko’s baby fever via her Instagram posts. Homer is jealous of CBG’s child-free existence, and agrees to help Marge convince CBG to have a child. “Anything to destroy their paradise.” They meet CBG and Kumiko at a cemetery movie showing of Forward to the Past, where Bart and Lisa (Yeardley Smith) try to act convincingly appealing as model children. CBG gets upset that the kids are on their phones during the film. “Tonight you watch a screen that is un-swipeable.” Meanwhile, Marge and Homer get cozy in a fancy crypt they discover in the cemetery. Lisa and Bart are surprised by how much they enjoyed the movie, and CBG discovers the joy of introducing young audiences to the media he loves.
Home and Marge find themselves locked in the crypt, and are horrified to discover smooth jazz being piped in via the internal PA system. CBG regales Bart and Lisa with Forward to the Past trivia, and changes his mind about wanting children. At that point the kids realize their parents are missing, and the group sets out in search of Homer and Marge. Bart theorizes that they have become zombies, and his fears are seemingly confirmed by groans coming out of the crypt. CBG fails in his effort to comfort the children and runs away before Marge and Homer break free of the crypt. CBG retreats to his father’s dismal mansion, where he hangs his head in shame. Homer and Marge console Kumiko, who says she hates them for giving her “a taste” of motherhood and demands they make it right by bringing back her husband.
Marge and Homer travel to the CBG family home and meet his father. “You may refer to me as Postage Stamp Fellow.” A Wes Anderson parody history of CBG’s family gives us a Royal Tenenbaums-esque chronicling of the character’s elaborate family tree. Marge talks to CBG about coming home to Kumiko, though he only wants to sort his comic book collection. More Wes Anderson-style animation tells the story of CBG’s time playing little-league baseball, and the day his dad failed to show up to watch the big game. Young CBG gets tossed into a dumpster by his teammates, where he discovers his love of comics. Marge confronts Postage Stamp Guy about his past and the father and son reconcile over a Sandy Koufax-autographed baseball. They have a catch with the collectible still in its pointy glass case. “Well, maybe Comic Book Guy won’t be so afraid to be a father… sucker,” comments Homer. CBG returns to Kamiko dressed as Mr. Beaver from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and the episode ends with a tribute to Rushmore via the song “Ooh La La” by the Faces. Over the end credits, we see a series of Wes Anderson-type portraits of the Simpson family members.
The Simpsons airs Sunday nights on FOX.
Mike serves as Laughing Place’s lead Southern California reporter, Editorial Director for Star Wars content, and host of the weekly “Who’s the Bossk?” Star Wars podcast. He’s been fascinated by Disney theme parks and storytelling in general since a very young age and resides in Burbank, California with his beloved wife and cats.