Saturday, September 29, 2012

I Miss My Old Glasses

I was going to write this entry when I got my new glasses but things got held up for about 8 months or so. Fortunately I'd like to think that one of the endearing quirks of this blog is its tendency towards putting out terminally outdated and overdue posts. Perhaps somewhere further down the line I'll write my thoughts on the Gary Condit murder investigation or my pick for Super Bowl XXXIX.

So as I was saying I got a new pair of glasses in February and every time I find myself getting new frames I think of that scene from the 6th season Simpsons episode "Bart's Girlfriend" where Marge asks  Homer if he noticed any new changes in Bart and he randomly suspects new glasses and then grimly misinterprets Marge's concerns about "smothering" Bart. Although it has little to do with the episode and isn't one of those all time famous Simpsons scenes like Kent Brockman's welcoming of out new insect overlords or parking in the Itchy lot (which I will almost always reference when parking in a large complicated parking lot with friends), this scene always sticks with me as one of my personal all time favorite scenes.

One for the reasons I find it so memorable is that for me it encapsulates in one scene what made the Simpsons the greatest show of all time. It has that wonderful mix of the classic and the absurd that the show uniquely captured so well in its prime. The Simpsons have always been about subverting the trope of the American family television sitcom and at its best the television comedy genre as a whole. Here you have the most common of settings for a sitcom set up, a son having personal problems and the parents being concerned, but then when one parent discusses the matter with the other it quickly veers into the silly randomness of a discussion about non-existent glasses and contemplated acts of filicide. There's heart but there's also the unexpected weirdness as portrayed respectively by Marge and Homer. Essentially every sitcom since the dawn of the medium to this episode when placed in that similar scenario went the standard route of the parents reacting logically to the situation. The show was just routinely doing amazing things like this week in and week out in its hey day.

That's just my incredibly unfunny take on an incredibly funny scene.

Oh and for anyone out there who now feels a little guilty that they didn't notice my new glasses, they were essentially the same color and design as the old ones so you're off the hook.

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