I thought the episode itself was okay with a few good laughs. The injury that gives Homer an extra special push is one to his back. The result: Homer now has a wonderful singing voice only while lying flat. This scenario gave Dan Castellaneta a chance to show off his singing prowess.
To be honest, other than singing opera flat on his back, Homer was the most normal of the characters this week. Marge really surprised me when she crashed a house party (that turned out to be a wake) just because she didn't want to cook after church services. This is something Homer usually ends up doing. Seeing Marge snake through an open basement window made be do a double-take. Meanwhile, Mr. Burns partnered once again with Homer; the second time in a row that this has happened since the beginning of the season. Burns discovered Homer's singing while shopping for some extra body parts down at the hospital's morgue.
While it may not have seemed like it, there was a lot going on in this episode. Here are just some of the highlights:
- Blackboard Gag: The Wall Street Journal is Better Than Ever. I didn't understand what this meant until about five seconds later when I realized that Rupert Murdoch is now the proud owner of that newspaper. When it finally dawned on me I laughed out loud.
- Couch Gag: The Evolution of Homer. This was a pretty elaborate gag for a second episode of the season. Homer evolves from a blob of goo to the man we see today, which really hasn't evolved that much. Some of the good things here were Mr. Burns as the octopus, dinosaurs Bart and Lisa battling it out, and Moe devolving as he passed Homer along the way.
- 'Jesus: The Real American Idol' -- this week's church signage
- Homer's philosophy about 'au jus': Au Jus -- not quite gravy, not quite blood.
- Mahogany -- great movie, great casket -- Bart at the wake he and his family crashed. This was the only solo scene that Bart had for the entire episode.
- The Springfield Opera House looks an awful lot like another famous opera house based in Sydney, Australia. If I could only remember the name of the Sydney Opera House. What the heck is it?
- What do friends of Placido Domingo call him -- P Dingo
- We'll move to another table, Yoko. -- Carl, when he and Lenny are asked to sit at another table by Marge during her anniversary dinner.
- Inflatable Homer Decoys. Need I say more about that?
- After Julia the stalker is poisoned by her own drug-tipped dart, Chief Wiggum tells the snipers to take the shot. These are the worst snipers on the planet, as they didn't hit her once. They must be rejects from various A-Team episodes. Finally, a chandelier crashes down on her. To me, that was the funniest moment of the night.