Episode: Boy-Scoutz 'N The Hood
After enjoying an all-syrup Super Squishy, Bart and Milhouse are on a sugar high and decide to hit the town. Declaring their love for their city, the boys sing and dance to the number "Springfield, Springfield," which is a reference to the song and dance number "New York, New York" performed in "On the Town," which starred Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra. If the song didn't give it away, perhaps the dancing sailors did.
Episode: Homer Vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment
"The Simpsons" has paid homage to the classic Hitchcock film "North by Northwest" more than once over the years, but the very first time was during the second season. In the episode, Homer stands in front of a cable man's truck to stop him because he has been giving out free cable, while Cary Grant's character in the film stands in front of a tank truck to try and get a ride to safety.
Episode: A Streetcar Named Marge
Although the episode is titled and based after another famous film, that didn't stop the creators from sneaking in a reference to Alfred Hitchcock's classic thriller "The Birds." In the scene where Homer, Bart and Lisa pick up Maggie from daycare, they see babies perched everywhere sucking on pacifiers, just like the hoards of birds that are in the iconic final shot of the film. As a bonus, they even added a cartoon version of Hitchcock walking his dog, which is reference to the real cameos Hitchcock would famously make in all of his movies.
Episode: Cape Feare
Much of the episode is obviously derived from "Cape Fear" with Sideshow Bob copying many of the same moves as seen by Robert De Niro's character in the film. Yet the creators took inspiration from other films as well, such as the thriller "The Night of the Hunter." In the film, Robert Mitchum's character has the words "LOVE" and "HATE" tattooed on his knuckles, while on the show Sideshow Bob hilariously has "LUV" and "HAT" tattooed onto his four-fingered hands.
Episode: Secrets Of A Successful Marriage
Holy Toledo, Smithers used to be married! The show blamed the marriage ending due to Smithers unwavering dedication to Mr. Burns (which is only half the story), yet used two popular Tennessee Williams play-turned-films ("Cat On A Hot Tin Roof" and "A Streetcar Named Desire") to depict his troubled marriage. Most notably, the former was used with the reference to the drinking and crutches of Paul Newman's character and the fact that Smither's wife looks like Elizabeth Taylor from the film.
Episode: Homie The Clown
The episode itself is a reference to the character "Homey the Clown" from the sketch comedy "In Living Color," but like all episodes there were still multiple cultural references sprinkled throughout. A subtle one was when Homer forms a circus tent with his mashed potatoes — this was a parody of Richard Dreyfuss' character making a replica of Devil's Tower with his starchy side dish in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."
Episode: Sideshow Bob Roberts
With Sideshow Bob running as the Republican candidate for the mayor of Springfield, the entire episode drew its inspiration from the infamous Watergate scandal that smeared Richard Nixon's legacy. With that in mind, it really isn't that surprising that the writers chose to reference "All the President's Men" multiple times, such as when Lisa was looking over the voting records. Additionally, the music used and the meeting in the dark garage between Lisa, Bart and Smithers are all hilarious references.
Episode: Lady Bouvier's Lover
Homer's dad and Marge's mom fall in love, and of course chaos and cultural references ensue. In a scene where Grampa pulls out all the stops and his smooth moves make two rolls dance on forks, the writers are clearly referencing Charlie Chaplin doing the roll dance in the classic silent film "The Gold Rush."
Episode: Brother From The Same Planet
Quite obviously, the title of the episode is a reference to the 1984 film "The Brother from Another Planet," which is sprinkled in with homage to other films in the episode such as "The Shining," "Psycho" and "The Quiet Man." Yet the best film reference is in regards to a classic scene in "Public Enemy," when Bart shoves half a piece of grapefruit into Homer's face, just like Tom does to Kitty when he is tired of her complaining all the time. Bart even has the same jammies on!
Episode: Last Exit to Springfield
In an episode with references to "The Godfather Part II," "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," The Beatles and The Three Stooges, you probably missed the quick but certain reference to Tim Burton's comic book adaption. The scene where Lisa gets her monstrous braces and then breaks her mirror is based on the film scene where Jack Napier first sees his transformation as the Joker.
Episode: Homer The Vigilante
It's mad mad mad mad how many references "The Simpsons" made to the epic comedy film about a group of strangers on a hunt for stolen cash hidden under a big "W". The first obvious one would be when Molloy tells Homer and the cops that his looted goods were hidden under a giant "T," which sends everyone in the town on a frantic chase to find it first. Additionally, the ending sequence uses the same music and camera angles as the film, not to mention the scene where Bart tricks Phil Silvers (who starred in the film) into driving his car into the river just like his character did.
Episode: Mr. Plow
According to the production crew, the episode contained many "very obscure" cultural references, most notably to the existential thriller "Sorcerer." The scenes where Homer drives through the snowy and treacherous terrain of the mountain roads is all modeled exactly after truck scenes in the film.
Episode: Yokel Chords
This was less an inspiration as it was a cartoon recreation of the classic art-house French film from Louis Bunuel. During Lisa's educational fieldtrip with the Cietus children, she takes them to a film screening of "Un Chien Andalou," which shows the film's super gross but super famous opening scene of an eye being cut open.
Episode: Thirty Minutes Over Tokyo
The reference to Akira Kurosawa's classic "Rashomon" was very brief but very clever. Homer is feeling down about having to go to Japan, so on the plane ride there, Marge tries to cheer him up by saying, "Come on Homer, Japan will be fun. You liked 'Rashomon.'" To which Homer replies "That's not how I remember it." This joke is great since the film is all about exploring contradictory interpretations of the same event by different people.
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