Friday, May 3, 2013

Margical History Tour (S15, E11-324)

"In the morning, you'll be as good as new... or dead!
But the important thing is, we'll know."
Plot Summary
Marge takes Bart, Lisa and Milhouse to the library as the kids are writing papers on historical figures.  However, the library mostly houses bums now (including Homer apparently), and holds nothing of educational value.  Marge decides to step up and help the kids out with the papers herself thanks to her somewhat competent knowledge of history.

Henry VIII
For Milhouse, Marge tells the story of King Henry VIII (Homer), who so desperately wants to conceive a male heir.  His first wife, "Margerine" of Aragon, bears a daughter, Mary I (Lisa).  Since Margerine is the daughter of the King of Spain, Henry can't simply execute her, so he instead invents and implement divorce, though Margerine still gets Ireland in the settlement.  Henry then goes to marry Anne Boleyn, but when she births a daughter she gets executed.  Soon, Henry goes through a cycle of marrying and executing women when they fail to birth boys, sometimes not even that much.  Years later, Margerine meets with an ailing Henry, who regrets his decisions, and asks Margerine to be with him.  Margerine instead suffocates Henry with a pillow.  It is to be noted that this story isn't historically accurate, but you probably knew that already.
Individual Score: +0.2

For Lisa, Marge tells the story of Lewis (Lenny) and Clark (Carl), pioneers who set out for western pastures.  They received the aid of a Native American tribe, who offer a young girl as a guide to the land: Sacagawea (Lisa).  Though Sacagawea's oft-obvious advice seemingly goes ignored by the two rather inept adventurers, they still make some progress.  However, the two increasingly grow weary of Sacagawea's constant opinions and nagging, and she decides to take their leave.  Soon, Sacagawea runs afoul of a mountain lion, but is saved when Lewis and Clark arrive and scare off the beast by making themselves appear large (advice Sacagawea gave them earlier).  The three reunite and together reach the rainy shores of Eugene, Oregon.    As thanks for the help, Lewis and Clark preserve Sacagawea's memory in a dollar coin that can be exchanged for a real dollar at the bank.  It is to be noted that this story isn't historically accurate, but you probably knew that already.
Individual Score: +0.5

Bart is uninterested in all of this, but Marge tries to drive his interest in a 'badass rocker that lived fast and died young': Mozart!  In this story, Mozart (Bart) is a gifted musician with a prankster's mindset, much to the annoyance of Salieri (Lisa), who in this story is Mozart's sister for an odd though slightly convenient reason.  Mozart's work is continuously praised while Salieri's is ignored.  Salieri has enough and decides to plot Mozart's downfall.  Learning that the crowd's pleasure is directly tied to the Emperor's (Mr. Burns), Salieri slips a sleeping agent into the Emperor's wine, causing him to fall asleep during one of Mozart's compositions.  The crowd follows suit, and Mozart is now considered washed up.  He takes the news rather hard, and goes into a deep depression that results in him becoming deathly ill.  Salieri admits her guilt to a dying Mozart, but he takes comfort that, in dying young, his music will forever remain more popular than Salieri's.  Still, Salieri now considers herself the best living composer around and decides to impress the Emperor with a new composition, however the Emperor has grown to love a new composer: Beethoven.  Salieri snaps and admits herself to an asylum.  Lisa points out this story is similar to the inaccurate play/movie Amadeus, but Homer throws in a Animal House reference, and the episode concludes.
Individual Score: +0.3

Quick Review
As you can tell, I didn't find any of the three segments very funny, with the Sacagawea segment just barely beating out the other two in terms of quality.  As is my continuing fear with these anthologies, I think more effort was put into telling this inaccurate historical tales than making sure the jokes within said tales were both plentiful and comical, and as a result the episode as a whole didn't have much in the way of quality bits.

Final Score: 6.4

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