"Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk" (German: Burns to Sell (sic) the Power Plant) is the eleventh episode of Season 3. It aired on December 5, 1991. The episode was written by Jon Vitti and directed by Mark Kirkland.
Mr. Burns sells the Nuclear Power Plant to a pair of Mr. Ronald Banner and German businessmen for $100 million. As a result of the takeover, Homer loses his job, and falls into a state of depression. Homer sees Burns and Smithers in Moe's, and speaks his mind to him. He realizes he no longer has his position of power, and buys the power plant back for $50 million - and immediately rehires Homer.
Homer learns he owns stock in the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, and sells his 100 shares for 25 cents a piece to a shady stock broker, netting $25, which he spends on an expensive beer. Soon after the sale, he learns that the value of the stock had kept rising over the course of the day to end at $52 per share. While Homer misses out on the windfall – he could have made $5,200 – other employees who clearly had larger shares make small fortunes, buying new cars and Lenny getting a facelift which Homer regretted and his family's disappointed for Homer's recklessness.
The reason for the stock's inflated value is because a depressed Mr. Burns wants to sell the plant to pursue other interests. The sale is completed at a value of $100 million to two German businessmen, Hans and Fritz, who have been hanging out in Moe's looking for just such an opportunity (provided the purchase leaves them with enough change to buy the Cleveland Browns). They immediately begin a thorough evaluation of the plant and its employees. When they interview Homer, he is unable to intelligently answer their questions and begins slipping into a now-infamous fantasy about cavorting through "The Land of Chocolate." It isn't long before Homer gets laid off, the 'only' one to get laid off.
A depressed Homer mopes around the house, insisting he is a competent safety-minded worker while jabbing at a plugged in toaster with a mangled fork. Meanwhile, Burns is not having a good time in retirement and decides to go to Moe's Tavern to have a drink. There, Homer and the other bar patrons laugh scornfully at Burns while Homer chants, "Nobody loves you." Burns realizes that only his ownership of a nuclear plant gave him power over ordinary men and is resolved to buy back the plant.
The German investors and Mr. Ronald Banner are more than willing to sell the plant back to Burns because as they say, it will cost another $100 million dollars to bring the plant up to code. Burns, noting their desperation to sell, offers them $50 million for the plant saying that, "you will find it [the offer] most unfair." Homer is re-hired, and Burns plots his revenge on him at some unspecified point in the future.