Recap: The Simpsons S 6 E 16 Bart Vs Australia
After Bart pranks a child in Australia in order to prove to Lisa that the Coriolis effect doesn't affect draining water, he faces more than he bargains when the family has to go to the nation.note
Tropes in the episode (YMMV):
- Adolf Hitlarious: Bart phones an elderly Hitler (or a man who looks like him and speaks German like him) while trying to call people in the Southern hemisphere.
- Argentina Is Nazi Land: Bart unknowingly phones an old age Adolf Hitler in an unknown South-American country (implied to be a Spanish-speaking one note as a man on a bike passes by and says, "Buenos noches, mein Fuerher").
- Artistic License - Physics: Ironically, the "fact" that kicked off the entire episode was wrong: while the Coriolis effect is real, it's too weak to affect the direction of your average draining vortex, which is far more affected by stuff like the shape of the recipient, meaning the entire plot is just an excuse for The Simpsons to wreak havoc in another country.
- Artistic License - Biology: Bullfrogs are carnivorous, and would not feed on corn.
- Artistic License - Geography: All Rule of Funny, of course, but here goes:
- Kangaroos living that close to an airport?
- Australia doesn't allow the import of invasive species, but Bart just lets his bull frog jump away without anyone at the airport noticing them or prohibiting them from doing this? Granted, this was made before airport security was tightened because of 9/11, but even back then, they would have cracked down on that.
- Australian law doesn't require the booting of convicts.
- The Australian flag does not consist of a boot kicking a bare butt.
- Australia: Specific National Stereotypes references to things the country's famous for are made: kangaroos, koalas, the boomerang, the deserted backlands, dingoes, the 1980 disappearance of baby Azaria Chamberlain (which ties in with dingoes), Crocodile Dundee, the fact that the country was a British penal colony during the 19th century, Mad Max, Maoris and the didgeridoo. A stereotypical version of the Australian accent is imitated too and several Australians are dressed as bushwackers who apparently only drink beer.
- Banana Republic: Bart phones a Latin American dictator who thinks the phone call is his subjects starting a revolution.
- Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: Marge tries to order coffee in Australia, but all the bartender seems to know is beer.
- Comically Missing the Point: Homer asking Bart if he can commit fraud to go on a free trip to Florida (they would go to Florida later on "Kill the Alligator and Run" — which is as hated now as this episode was when it first came on — but not Bart committed fraud there).
- Dumbass Has a Point: Homer tries to explain to the Australian government about corporal punishment.
- Embarrassing Slide: One slide in the projector is the US government's plan B for Cuba, which the diplomat quickly takes out and swallows with the words: "Oops! Let's pretend we didn't see that, did we?"
- Everyone Chasing You: Happens to The Simpsons near the end.
- Exactly What It Says on the Tin: "Bart vs. Australia" is Bart facing off against Australia after a phone prank gone wrong.
- Expy: The First Australian Prime Minister looks just like Snake, while the Australian store clerk looks like that teenage character (The Squeaky-Voiced Teen" unofficially named "Jeremy Freedman") back in Springfield.
- Flushing Toilet, Screaming Shower: While Homer is showering Bart keeps flushing the toilet, causing him to scream because of the changing temperatures.
- Global Ignorance:
- Bart mistakes the "Rand Mc Nally" logo on his globe for a country, causing Lisa to mock him: "In fact, in Rand Mc Nally, they wear hats on their feet and hamburgers eat people!"
- Later, Homer mispronounces Uruguay as "U R Gay" (coincidentally, Uruguay would later be the first country in the world to legalize homosexual unions).
- When the Simpsons arrive in Australia and Lisa tells Homer "it's summer here, not winter" he disappointingly throws his sled away.
- Hollow World: Apparently the Hindu god Vishnu controls the center of the Earth.
- Kangaroo Pouch Ride: Deconstructed for once in Western animation — Bart and Homer try to get away by stuffing themselves in the pouches of two kangaroos, only to find that it's full of mucus and womb slime. Bart and Homer even comment that it's not like in the cartoons.
- Kangaroos Represent Australia: As soon as The Simpsons arrive in Australia the first one appears.
- Karma Houdini: Bart is never punished for what he has done. He almost does, but when the government betrays the family, Bart's punishment and his actions stop being a priority.
- Land Down Under: Almost every stereotype about Australia is squished in.
- Lost in Translation: Bart asks a translator of a South American dictator "which way the water in their toilets turns after flushing?" The translator misinterprets this and tells the dictator "the tides are turning" (meaning that his people are rising up to overthrow him), to which he panics and jumps out of the window.
- Mama Bear: Marge.
- Mooning: Bart shows his buttocks to the offended Australian people.
- My Country Tis of Thee That I Sting: The fence of the American embassy "made with pride in the U.S.A." malfunctions half way.
- National Stereotypes: Australians really don't come off too well in this episode.
- Our Founder: A statue of an Australian convict who looks like Snake Jailbird can be seen.
- Papa Wolf: Homer… as far as keeping Bart from getting booted.
- Reality Ensues: Homer and Bart just think they can hop into kangaroo pouches to ride around in, but can't because they're too big and it's full of mucus.
- Scare Chord: The koala riding the helicopter back to American soil.
- In Tobias' home in Australia a framed picture of Ayers' Rock can be seen.
- Bart's joke: "I hear a dingo eating your baby" is a reference to A Cry In The Dark, based on the real life 1980 mysterious disappearance of baby Azaria Chamberlain. His mother claimed he was snatched away by a dingo, fell under suspicion of having murdered him herself, but during her jail time new evidence did point out that the child might have been eaten by a dingo after all.
- When the plane lands in Australia we see rubble from Skylab under the airport's ground.
- The Australian showing Bart a spoon rather a knife is a reference to Crocodile Dundee, where the knife welding robber change his tune when he saw Dundee's large Bowie knife. Dundee already appeared earlier in this episode during the slideshow the American representative displayed.
- Mad Max: Wez from "Mad Max: The Road Warrior 2" can be seen in the crowd chasing after The Simpsons.
- When the Simpsons leave the embassy by helicopter it's a direct shout-out a famous photo of the Americans leaving Vietnam after the Communist takeover in 1975.
- The laundry ship that takes the Simpsons back home is named "SS Walter Mondale", after the Democratic politician who lost the presidential elections in 1984.
- Singing in the Shower: Homer at the beginning of the episode... before Bart begins to flush the toilet constantly.
- Smarter Than He Looks: Bart’s ability to taunt the Australians, and he moons them with the message, "Don't Tread on Me", written on his buttocks even Lisa is surprised how he did it?
- Tempting Fate: A man stuck on the roof of his house during a volcanic eruption (though natural disasters like that call for an evacuation, so how would that man still be there?) risks and loses his life just to grab for a telephone that happens to ring while he floats by.
- A koala bear touches an electric device twice, gets electrocuted, falls down and immediately climbs up in the tree again.
- Too Dumb to Live: The man on the roof of his house during a volcanic eruption chose to grab for the payphone and die rather than just leave it alone.
- Unintentional Period Piece:
- The Simpsons watch a presentation about Australia on a slide projector. Today they would probably use a laptop with a computer-connected projector and a Powerpoint presentation (but then we wouldn't get the joke of the "plan B" slide that was supposed to be for an assassination plot against Fidel Castro).
- This episode aired in 1995, a year after the caning of Michael Fay in Singapore for vandalism, which was reported in the news way back then. Unless you grew up around the time that that was news, most people these days wouldn't even get the reference to it.