Cletus's kids become stars on Krusty's show after Lisa offers to home-school them. Meanwhile, Bart is sent to therapy for scaring children with tales of a Lethal Chef who cannibalizes kids.
- As Himself: Stephen Sondheim, Andy Dick and James Patterson.
- Art Shift: The "Dark Stanley" sequences are based on the illustrations of Edward Gorey.
- Big "NO!": Krusty gives one after being by Brandine that only two of the seven Spuckler children were fathered by Cletus—the one that can't sing and the one that can't adlib.
- Biting-the-Hand Humor: Bart tells Dr. Swanson that he once dreamt that the Simpsons were cartoon characters, and that their success led to a "crazy propaganda network called Fox News."
- Brick Joke: Bart was sent to therapy for making up a story about a child murdering chef known as "Dark Stanley". The viewers eventually learn that Dark Stanely was in fact real, and that Dr. Swanson's son was murdered by him, and is deeply troubled by it.
- Crashing Dreams: Marge is dreaming of James Patterson, and he's about to ask her to kiss when he suddenly sounds like an alarm clock, waking her up.
- Halfway Plot Switch: Krusty largely hijacked the main plot on whether or not Lisa can teach the Spuckler children by getting them into a contract on his show.
- Never Learned to Read: Cletus merely signs the contract after pretending to read through it.
- Pimp Duds: Cletus wears them after becoming his kids' manager.
- Real After All: Shockingly enough, Dark Stanley.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Cletus, after signing on to being a manager to the children. Ultimately subverted when Brandine saves the Spuckler family and gets them out of the contract.
- Wingding Pupils: Enforced. Krusty gets dollar signs on his eyes when he learns that the Spuckler kids don't have agents. He then takes off the dollar sign contact lenses and comments that he knew he would find a use for them someday.
- Wrongfully Attributed: Krusty thinks Stephen Sondheim was the one who wrote Cats.