Recap: The Simpsons S 21 E 12 Boy Meets Curl

The Simpsons head to Canada (again) where Lisa begins collecting Olympic pins and Homer and Marge get into curling.

Tropes:

  • Artistic License Sports: In this episode, mixed curling is a demonstration sport at the Winter Olympics. Curling has been staged at the Winter Olympics nine times - six as a medal sport (1924, 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014), and three as a demonstration sport (1932, 1988, and 1992). On none of those occasions has there been a separate tournament for mixed gender teams in addition to the men's and women's tournaments. However, if the World Curling Federation wanted to add a mixed tournament to the Olympic program, and the International Olympic Committee approved this request, it would be added as a full medal sport, rather than as a demonstration sport.
    • Bob Costas notes that the gold medal Homer, Marge, and Seymour and Agnes Skinner win is the only medal the USA end up winning at the Vancouver Games. In real life, medals are awarded for demonstration sports at the Olympics, but they do not count towards a country's medal total.
    • At the Opening Ceremony, there is a separate Parade of Nations for countries "not competing but observing". Obviously, there is no such thing in real life, as the ceremony would take all night. However, this added element was likely tossed in due to the Rule of Funny, taking a subtle dig at the fact that the Opening Ceremony tends to take a while, anyway. Also, the Parade of Nations in this episode does not use the real life traditions of Greece leading off the parade, as they have done so since the 1928 Summer Games, in commemoration of them being the founders of the Olympics, and the host nation (in this case, Canada) marching in last. This is probably due to the fact that viewers who aren't sports fans or don't watch the Olympics wouldn't understand this element of the parade.
    • Agnes Skinner has a flashback to competing in pole vaulting at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki...while nine months pregnant with Seymour. In real life, a woman at full term in a pregnancy would not be medically cleared to compete in any sport. While women have competed at the Olympics while pregnant, they have done so in the very early stages of their pregnancies.
    • Bob Costas does not commentate on any sport during the Olympics. Instead he serves as a studio host for NBC, meaning he tosses to venues from the host city's International Broadcast Centre during primetime coverage. Costas has also never commentated on curling. During the Winter Olympics, NBC gives curling prominent airtime on its cable networks (usually, CNBC, with MSNBC and USA Network also broadcasting the sport). KNBC sports director Fred Roggin (rhymes with "Rogan", as in comedian and UFC announcer Joe) hosts all curling coverage, with commentary from Andrew Catalon, who replaced the late Don Chevrier starting at the Vancouver Games (at the Sochi Games four years later, Catalon split duties with Jason Knapp). However, Costas is associated with the Olympics by the American public, and he is far more well-known to them than Roggin, Catalon, and Knapp, so, he got the role for this episode.
    • At the Olympic trials, Homer throws the team's final stone too hard, causing Marge to guide it out onto the arena's concourse, and back onto the playing surface, where it lands right on the bullseye, allowing the team to win the competition, and the Olympic berth. In real life, when a stone leaves the playing surface, it is out of bounds, and can no longer be played.
  • As Himself/Special Guest: NBC sportscaster Bob Costas - who has been a part of NBC's Olympic broadcast team since 1988, starting that year as the late-night host at the Summer Games in Seoul, before settling into his current role as primetime host at the 1992 Summer Games in Barcelona - is the curling commentator.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: When this episode was dubbed for Brazilian viewers, Homer told Marge the therapist was that "no filme" (in the film/movie).
  • Call Back: When the Simpsons went to Canada, Homer met the woman who helped him have an epiphany in The Simpsons Movie.
  • Imagine Spot: Homer imagines the Winter Olympics as having Summer Olympic sports with elements of winter. Seconds later, he closes his eyes to picture what he thinks the Olympic trials are like. We don't see this one.
  • Shout-Out: There was a convention of Curly impersonators. Moe Szyslak slapped all of them.
  • Take That: Homer refused to watch a movie as soon as he learned Ben Affleck was the star.