Recap: The Simpsons S 2 E 10 Bart Gets Hit By A Car

Mr. Burns' testimony.

Episode - 7F10
First Aired - 1/10/1991

In Bart Gets Hit By A Car Bart is hit by Mr. Burns' car and falls into a coma. When he wakes up his family tries to create a lawsuit against Mr. Burns. Both Burns and the Simpsons exaggarate Bart's injuries, wich leads to yet another strain on Marge and Homer's marriage.

The episode marks the First Appearance of incompetent lawyer Lionel Hutz, incompetent physician Dr. Nick Riviera and the Blue-Haired Lawyer.

This episode contains examples of:

  • Ambulance Chaser: Lionel Hutz. It's even mentioned the Simpsons first saw him when he was chasing Bart's ambulance.
    • When Homer came to see him, Hutz hears an ambulance and decides not to go after it this time since he's already got a case.
  • And You Were There: When Bart awakes after being hit by a car to find Homer, Marge and Lisa surrounding him, along with bottom-feeding attorney Lionel Hutz grinning cheesily at him:
    Bart: I had the most wonderful dream! You were there, and you, and you... [to Hutz] You, I've never seen before.
    • Seeing as Bart had just been to Hell, his remark that he saw the others there is particularly hilarious. He's such a horrible child.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Homer could've taken the offer and walked away but let his ego get the better of him. Mr. Burns manages to find out about the phony doctors after overhearing Marge. Then he has her come to the stand on count the next day. Not surprisingly, she winds up blowing it for Homer and winning the case for Mr. Burns.
  • Big "WHY?!": Mr. Burns does this after Bart's been hit, according to his personal testimony.
  • Blunt "Yes"
    Homer: Mr. Burns, are you trying to get me drunk?
    Mr. Burns; Yes.
  • Court Room Episode: The majority of the episode is set in court, where The Simpsons try to sue Mr. Burns.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: This is one of the few "Simpsons" episodes, save for the "Treehouse of Horror" ones, where the title appears on the screen at the start of the episode.
  • Episode Title Card: Parodied. Just as the title dissolves during the opening credits, Bart is hit.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Bart is indeed hit by a car.
  • Frivolous Lawsuit: On both sides the truth is exaggarated and twisted to make their side win.
  • Gray and Gray Morality: Mr. Burns is just as wretched as ever and was completely unconcerned when he hit Bart. However, Homer's lawsuit against him is completely frivolous as Bart's injuries weren't particularly grievous or expensive which is why his win isn't considered a Karma Houdini. Everyone's in the wrong here.
  • I Warned You: Bart is told not to spit over the side of the escalator that brings him to Heaven. He does it anyway and is promptly thrown in Hell.
  • Moral Guardians: Satan tells Bart to "lie, cheat and listen to Heavy Metal music", in reference to the claim of many ultraconservative Christian fundamentalist preachers in the US who claimed metal music has Satanic messages.
  • Never My Fault: Homer refused to take Mr. Burns' offer, and Marge admits that she doesn't like the situation they're in, including Homer's greed and "phony doctors". Burns overhears this, and has Marge up to the stands to confess everything. Homer now isn't sure if she loves her anymore for blowing their chance at $1 million.
  • Our Demons Are Different: Satan apparently owns a computer to store the files of whom should be in Hell and who doesn't. Also In-Universe: later designs of Satan in the show would look different.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Mr. Burns doesn't fire Homer because of the media backlash he would likely suffer as a result.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Both Bart and Mr. Burns deliver different retellings of the accident to the court, exaggerating things to make themselves look more sympathetic in order to win the case. Bart claims that Mr. Burns intentionally tried to run him down, while Mr. Burns says that the boy moved wildly all over the road as he desperately tried to avoid hitting Bart (and let out an emotional Big "NO!" and Take Me Instead when he did). Neither were remotely true, but the court clearly sides with Bart and doesn't buy Mr. Burns' story for a second.
  • Satan: Bart meets him briefly.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Marge telling the truth and ruining the lawsuit.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Mr. Burns claimed at the beginning of the trial he should be allowed to run over anyone he wanted.
  • Self-Inflicted Hell: Bart could have avoided going to Hell if he hadn't spit over the side of the escalator that brought him to Heaven.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Bart arrives in Hell where he sees a scene from Hieronymus Bosch's tryptich of the "Garden Of Earthly Delights".
    • Satan says: "Please allow me to introduce myself", which is a reference to the first line in The Rolling Stones ' song "Sympathy For The Devil" from Beggars Banquet.
    • Bart lying in bed and saying "And you were there, and you..." is a reference to the ending of The Wizard of Oz.
  • Special Guest: Phil Hartman as Lionel Hutz and the PA announcer on the way to Heaven.
  • Take Me Instead: Mr. Burns' cry when Bart is hit by a car, according to his testimony.
  • Time Marches On: Satan says Bart isn't supposed to arrive in Hell, until "the Yankees wins the pennant. That's nearly a century from now." In Real Life the Yankees have won the A.L. pennant 7 times since the episode aired, the first time in 1998.note 
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • Bart actually goes to Heaven first, but he blows it by not disobeying the rules immediately after hearing them. After which he plummits to Hell.
    • Mr. Burns offers to settle out of court for $500,000 dollars, and Homer turns it down....except that he's suing Mr. Burns for a million dollars and Hutz gets fifty percent (50%), so that's the same thing he'd get if he won the suit. Unless Hutz got half of the settlement.
    • Mr. Burns thought the media would praise him for firing Homer until Smithers advised him otherwise.