In addition, "Cosmic Wars: The Gathering Shadow" was an thinly-veiled parody of The Phantom Menace, and the various complaints against The Gathering Shadow strongly resembled various complaints against The Phantom Menace and to a certain extent the entirety of the Prequel Trilogy.
The Gathering shadow is a parody of the phantom menace and attack of the clones.
Homer sings Glen Campbell's "Wichita Lineman" when he puts the AA operator "on hold."
The title of this episode is a play on the film, Independence Day, and Martina McBride’s song, “Independence Day”.
Marge repeatedly hiccupping, rendering her unable to finish the word "incarcerated," and subsequent decision to rephrase her sentence to use shorter words ("I'm going to jail") is a nod to a recurring Porky Pig gag.
The other film airing at the Aztec theater, The Momentum of Things, was a parody of the British-American romantic comedy Brassed Out. Otto's holding Margaret Thatcher responsible for the decline of coal mining was itself a reference to the left-leaning perspective of Brassed Out.
The scene where Homer plays the piano, while Marge sings, was cut from this episode and later appears in the episode "Mommie Beerest" during the closing credits.
When Moe cries at the fact he just obliviously sold a expensive bottle of Chateau Latour wine to Homer and Marge, he dries his tears with a lost Shakespeare play, which would be worth much more than the wine.
This is the second episode where a Simpson attends rehab. The first was "Duffless".