Recap / The Simpsons S 7 E 25 Summer Of 4 Ft 2

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On the last day of school, no one bothers to sign Lisa's yearbook, making her feel depressed about her lack of true friendsnote  and, during a trip to Flanders' beach house, Lisa decides to ditch her nerdy persona and be one of the cool kids, which makes her popular with some local teenagers (one of which is voiced by guest star Christina Ricci). Meanwhile, Homer goes to the beachside Kwik-E-Mart to buy some illegal fireworks.

Tropes featured:

  • Accidental Aesop: The episodes message seems to be to be yourself. The problem with that is that it doesn’t really make any sense. It doesn’t explain why she has no friends to begin with. She is obviously being herself at school so why doesn’t it in Springfield. it also ignore the fact that she completely changed her personality to get the kids to like her in the first place, (they even have a Does This Remind You of Anything? moment with a crustation), they also got leery anytime she showed signs of her original personality. The actual aesope come across more as confidence and self esteem. Liking yourself enough so that you can put yourself out there and approach people.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Lisa may have been restrained, but she got absolutely vicious with Bart the day after he showed her new friends her yearbook. She yanked him by his shirt, hissed at him over what he'd done, and was prepared to do something horrible to him with a bottle of honey before Marge came back in the room.
  • Be Yourself
    • Marge's motherly advice to Lisa about her lack of friends. Lisa tries the opposite, and makes herself into some beatnik. However, her intellectual nature still shines through, but her beach friends actually appreciate Lisa's lessons on nature and why you can't drink seawater.
    • Bart tries to mock Lisa with this trope the morning after he outs her. She almost kills him.
  • Big Brother Bully: Bart to possibly his nastiest degree. Rather than be happy that Lisa is making friends, he is upset they treat him like a nerd and that Lisa is co-opting his catchphrases, and tries to sabotage Lisa's relationship.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: Lisa infuriates Bart by using all his phrases and lingo to impress her friends.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: Homer tries to buy illegal fireworks from a Kwik-E-Mart and they're the least suspicious item on the list, despite being the only illegal one, parodying a similar scene in American Graffiti.
    Homer: Yeah, um, give me one of those porno magazines, a large box of condoms, a bottle of Old Harper, a box of panty shields, some illegal fireworks, and one of those disposable enemas. Eh, make it two.
  • Brick Joke: At the beginning of the episode Lisa gets annoyed at herself for wanting to bring a microscope to the beach. At the end Ben writes "next year bring your microscope" in her yearbook.
  • The Chew Toy: Milhouse, and he really does nothing to deserve any of it.
  • Escalating War: Lisa is left livid over Bart seemingly destroying her relationship new friends, leading to a back and forth at the beach carnival. After she is humiliated when they take their war to the bumper cars, Lisa loses interest and walks off depressed, and Bart to suffer a Jerkass Realization.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Bart becomes very jealous of Lisa's newfound popularity. It culminates in him showing Lisa's friends her yearbook, revealing her nerdy, unpopular nature.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: This episode focuses on Lisa's isolation from the rest of her classmates, sparking her voyage to remake herself.
    • Reconstructed with Bart, who already is popular in their home ground, but is left disgruntled when he can't impress Lisa's friends and is stuck with Milhouse throughout the vacation (Lisa had expected he'd try steal them from her and convinced them he was an annoying dork).
  • Identical Stranger: The local Kwik-E-Mart owner at the beach looks and sounds like Apu, only he looks Sikh (has a beard and a turban) rather than Hindu.
  • Mood Whiplash: The episode switches constantly between zany comedy and heartfelt moments. The ultimate example is Lisa discovering that her new friends don't shun her, and actually show their friendship by decorating Homer's car with seashells. Lisa is overjoyed...until Homer comes out and yells, "Sweet, merciful crap! MY CAR!"
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Bart regrets seemingly ruining Lisa's relationship with her beach friends, and makes up for it by having them sign her yearbook.
  • Nice Guy: Erin and her friends avoid Kids Are Cruel and are pretty nice people. When they learn Lisa's unpopular nature, rather than shun and bully her, they decorate the family car in seashells (which turns pear-shape when Homer catches them and a flock of seagulls peck at the car when they drive home), sign her yearbook, and tell her that they don't mind — and actually like — that she's a brainy girl.
  • Noodle Implements: Marge finding all the embarrassing sexual and personal hygiene stuff in the grocery bag, thinking he's planning some kinky night with her that she wants nothing to do with (though a later scene that shows Marge smiling has led viewers to believe that Homer really did use the panty shields, condoms, enemas, Old Harper, and porno mags for a sexual night with Marge).
  • Overly Long Name: The Flanders' beach house is at Little Pwagmattasquarmsettport.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Lisa, quietly but furiously, blows up at Bart for (apparently) sabotaging her relationship with her friends.
    Bart: Hey, Lise. I guess my little yearbook stunt was pretty rough but it did teach you a lesson. It's important to be yourself.
    Lisa: (Yanks him by the shirt into her face) I know exactly who I am. I am the sister of a rotten, jealous, mean little sneak! You cost me my only friends! You've ruined my life!
  • True Companions: Lisa and Erin, sealed by the friendship bracelet, and her and her other friends decorating Homer's car in Lisa's honor.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: Lisa is ostracized at school for being nerdy, then finally makes some new friends by posing as a beatnik until Bart outs her in front of them, for which she gives him a well-deserved tongue-lashing.

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