Recap: The Simpsons S 8 E 11 The Twisted World Of Marge Simpson

Episode - 4F08
First Aired - 1/19/1997

Marge goes into business for herself with a soft pretzel franchise (with some help from the local Mafia), only to be challenged by her former small business colleagues (who hired the Yakuzanote  to take her down).

This episode contains examples of:

  • Affably Evil: Fat Tony and that one Yakuza guy who bursts through the window, apologizes for the broken window and runs outside to continue the mob war.
  • Bait and Switch: When it seemed Homer was asking for divine help, he was actually asking a favor from the Mafia.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Maude Flanders. She's a huge bitch when she's not around her family.
  • Bowdlerization: The gorier descriptions of the Yakuza and the end fight on the lawn have been edited on the UK's Sky One channel.
  • Deal with the Devil: Fat Tony does Homer the favor of helping Marge's business succeed, but only in return for getting all the money.
    Homer: You mean the mob only did me a favor to get something in return? Oh, Fat Tony! I will say good day to you, sir!
    Fat Tony: Okay. I will go. (leaves, then realizes what has happened) Hey, wait a minute!
  • Introdump: Parodied with Cletus having bought 300 pretzels to feed his children, and then proceeds to call them all out of the house by name... all twenty-six of them.
  • Japanese Politeness: "Forgiveness, please!"
  • Loophole Abuse: Marge gives out coupons valid for a free sample. She forgot to state that she would accept only one coupon per customer. At least this helped her to know the name of every one of Cletus' children.
  • Mob War: Between Fat Tony's group and the Yakuza on the Simpsons' front yard.
  • No Ending: The episode ends abruptly in the middle of the mob war.
    • According to the audio commentary, the writers decided to Throw It In, as they were stumped for an ending.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome / Strolling Through the Chaos: The little guy in the Yakuza who is standing perfectly still as the fight rages around him. Homer wants to see him fight and knows it'll be good, but the second Marge gets him to come inside, we hear a barrage of screaming and punching. The episode ends with him coming crashing through the family's kitchen window; he apologizes to them before hurrying back outside.
  • Outrun the Fireball: Parodied when the mob blow up the Investorettes' falafel wagon. Maude is talking to Chief Wiggum who guides her through the process for throwing herself on the floor in front of the fireball.
  • Produce Pelting: Marge tries to sell her pretzels at a ballgame, but the sports fans end up hurling them at Whitey Ford.
  • Sanctuary of Solitude: Spoofed.
    Homer: (kneeling in a church) I've never reached to you before but my wife is in her hour of need. Your help could make all the difference in the world.
    (Reveal Shot shows that he's actually talking to Fat Tony and the Mafia)
  • Start My Own: Marge takes Lisa's advice to join a franchise to beat her former friends, now enemies, at their own game.
  • Ticker Tape Parade: Marge stages a fake tickertape parade (with Lisa as an astronaut) to avoid littering laws when she throws flyers for her pretzel business off the buildings.
    Chief Wiggum: Welcome back, space girl. (sniffs)
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: The Investorettes, especially Helen Lovejoy
  • Villainy-Free Villain: the Investorettes weren't really doing anything wrong by kicking Marge out of their investment group (Marge herself admitted she didn't like "the whole idea of 'investing'"), and they were well within their rights to compete with her when they both started up mobile snack businesses. But they're such jerks about it that you're not sad at all when Marge's Mafia goons blow up their truck.
    • Keep in mind, Marge didn't know about Homer getting the Mafia involved at first, but didn't have much choice to go along with it to save both their necks when they wanted their cut. The Investorettes on the other hand, knowingly hired the Yakuza to compete and take down Marge.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In the beginning of the episode, Marge is kicked out of her friends' group and becomes their worst enemy, but in the next episode that features her with them, they are all friends once more. Do they even resolve their differences in the end or what? And who won against the Springfield Mafia and Yakuza?
  • Yakuza
  • You Have 48 Hours: Fat Tony's ultimatum to Marge.
    "You have 24 hours to give us our money. And to show you we're serious... you have 12 hours. See you at 6 a.m.."