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Lisa Simpson, This Isn't Your Life
The Fool Monty
How Munched is That Birdie in the Window?

"Smithers, I want to die silently, on my own terms - crushing as many of those baby sea turtles as I possibly can... Goodbye, insufficiently cruel world!"

- Mr. Burns

"The Fool Monty" is the sixth episode of Season 22.

Synopsis

After Mr. Burns cuts in line for the medicine for a so-called disease called "House Cat Flu", everyone in town starts to hate him. Burns is told by his doctor that the tycoon will pass on within five–six weeks. Soon, Burns attempts to commit suicide but falls into a forest with amnesia. Homer and Bart then establish a schedule for the townspeople to keep Burns for half an hour each and torture him.

Full Story

The big TV netwoks make a plan to make a new disease, called House Cat Flu, that will force people to be scared and watch TV for updates on the crisis. After Homer threatens to burn everything the cat has touched, Marge tells him that there is a vaccine to the flu and they go to the hospital.

As the townspeople wait in a long line to receive the vaccine shot, which is rationed to one child per family, Burns drives directly to the front of the line and demands 37 doses: one for himself, one for Smithers and 35 for his dogs, even though they are immune to the disease, as they would see him take it and also want some. Mayor Quimby gives him what he wants, as he is the only person in town who actually pays his taxes. This draws dismay for the townspeople, followed by open hatred when Burns drives over several boxes containing the city's entire vaccine supply, wasting the vaccine by spilling it onto the street.

After Burns' Doctor gives him the vaccine, he mentions that Burns is dying and that he only has five to six weeks to live. He presents a massive dinner party and invites many townsfolk to deliver the horrible news, only to go from sad to enraged when people begin celebrating. Burns tries to take his own life by jumping of a cliff but bounces off objects, including an airplane. He then lands on the ground in a forest. In the morning, Bart is walking around poking objects with his "poop stick". Burns wakes up again after getting poked by Bart, with no memory at all. Bart takes him home after he almost gets his tongue withdrawn by a bird. Meanwhile, the townspeople gather at Burns' funeral and spit on his open grave until it is full.

Bart tries to hide Burns in his room before running into the living room. The Simpsons agree to take turns with Burns and seek revenge on him. After a while of disagreeing over whose turn it is to get Burns, he is returned to Homer for his turn again. However, Homer is getting bored of Burns and lets Lisa take him. Lisa takes Burns to his mansion where he sees picture of himself on a throne of skulls and remembers everything.

Meanwhile, Smithers has gotten a new job for former vice president Dick Cheney. He gets told to do jobs such as pull wings off of bees. Smithers obviously doesn't like his new job and boss as much as Mr. Burns.

Burns later comes picks up Mr. Smithers and takes him back with him after he had his memory erased. The pair then fly a helicopter above Springfield and reveal to the townspeople that he plans to drop a dome on Springfield in revenge for the deeds that the locals had done to him. Unfortunately, the townspeople reveal that it has already been done before. Lou also states that they could always just dig out from it, although that never occurred to anyone before. He then realizes that he had survived for longer than six weeks. Marge thinks it is because he has helped people and been kind. However, after giving Ralph a sweet, he starts to go into shock again. He then realizes that it was the spite building up in him that kept him alive. Burns plans to leave, and finds Nelson in the helicopter forcing Burns to be his father for the school play, otherwise he will crash the helicopter. Burns goes to the play and seems to like it.

Controversy

Near the beginning of the episode, a Fox News helicopter can be seen, with the slogan "Fox News: Not Racist, But #1 With Racists".

Bill O'Reilly, host of the Fox News show The O'Reilly Factor, aired the clip during the show's "Pinheads and Patriots" segment, saying "Continuing to bite the hand that feeds part of it, Fox broadcasting once again allows its cartoon characters to run wild." After the clip aired, he said "Pinheads? I believe so." Also in the episode Republican Vice President Cheney is lampooned throughout.

In response, the producers added a brief scene at the beginning of the opening sequence of the following episode with a helicopter that bears the slogan "Fox News: Unsuitable for Viewers Under 75." According to showrunner Al Jean, the producers of the show were pleased that they had annoyed O'Reilly, and that they had never received a warning from Fox about making jokes about the network. He added, "Both ends of it benefit the ultimate News Corp. agenda,” Jean said. “We’re happy to have a little feud with Bill O’Reilly. That’s a very entertaining thing for us."

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Citations

Season 21 Season 22 Episodes Season 23
Elementary School MusicalLoan-a LisaMoneyBARTTreehouse of Horror XXILisa Simpson, This Isn't Your LifeThe Fool MontyHow Munched is That Birdie in the Window?The Fight Before ChristmasDonnie FatsoMoms I'd Like to ForgetFlaming MoeHomer the FatherThe Blue and the GrayAngry Dad: The MovieThe Scorpion's TaleA Midsummer's Nice DreamLove is a Many Strangled ThingThe Great SimpsinaThe Real Housewives of Fat TonyHomer Scissorhands500 KeysThe Ned-liest Catch