Homer watches a 1980s family sitcom called ''Thicker Than Waters'' for tips on how to be a better father, while Bart earns money for a dirtbike by selling nuclear secrets to China.

!! Tropes:

* {{Blackmail}}: The creator of [[ShowWithinAShow "Thicker Than Waters"]] got the show to be aired because he had proof the network's president ran over somebody.
* BrickJoke: When Milhouse showed interest in a feminine set of overalls, he said he could find a way to make it work. After a few scenes without it being mentioned, Milhouse appears wearing it and being chased by bullies.
* BrokenPedestal: The RunningGag of Homer becoming more of an old-school sitcom dad by the influence of "Thicker Than Waters" ends when he sees an ''E! True Hollywood Story''-style special on the show's cast and learns how bad things were behind the scenes.
* DepravedDentist: Downplayed. Dr. Waters isn't overly sadistic, but he does encourage his son's friends to eat more sugary foods so he can generate new business.
* {{Expy}}[=/=]ShoutOut: The A-Team of Finland. One of them was basically a white Mr. T.
* FunWithAcronyms: '''C'''hinese '''I'''ntelligence in '''A'''merica, '''F'''rench '''B'''ureau of '''I'''nvestigations and the '''A'''-'''T'''eam of '''F'''inland.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: The scene with bullies chasing Milhouse for wearing a feminine set of overalls.
* ShoutOut: Bart's ImagineSpot about his punishment for selling nuclear secrets has a bald eagle rip out his liver, a nod to the Greek legend of Prometheus.
* ShowWithinAShow: "Thicker than Waters"
* SpyShip: The episode had a series of these, each of them having the initials of an American government agency [[IThoughtItMeant but standing for something completely different]] ([[ChinaTakesOverTheWorld CIA = Chinese Intelligence Agency]], [[CheeseEatingSurrenderMonkeys FBI = French Bureau of Investigation]], and [[Series/TheATeam ATF = A-Team of Finland]]).
* WhereTheHellIsSpringfield: The dirtbike given to Bart by the Chinese Intelligence in America comes with a license plate stating it came from "Springfield, USA".