Marge decides to throw a dinner party after realizing how lazy and slovenly her family has become, but the party turns awkward when Kirk and Luann van Houten (Milhouse's parents) begin bickering and Luann announces that she wants to divorce Kirk, who is happy to oblige. While Milhouse is taking the divorce (and the fact that Luann has a new boyfriend who used to be an American Gladiator) well, Homer begins to worry when he sees Kirk's life circle the drain now that his wife is gone and fears that Homer will suffer the same fate with Marge.
"A Milhouse Divided" contains examples of:
- Broken Aesop: Kirk and Luane Van Houten's divorce in was all just one big aesop about Homer needing to respect his wife, which is what Kirk tells Homer after losing his home, his job, and his car. But the way losing Luanne caused those was utterly contrived: he lost his home because he apparently got absolutely nothing in the divorce settlement, he was fired for being single (which is actually discrimination and grounds for Kirk to sue), and his car was stolen by a woman he met on the rebound (which was his fault, but was more general incompetence as he was dumb enough to hand over his keys to someone he just met while waiting in a bar).
- Call Back: The flashback of Homer and Marge's quickie wedding at Shotgun Pete's from "I Married Marge," along with a new scene where Homer buys Marge a Carvel ice cream cake shaped like a whale.
- Downer Ending: Even after Kirk's heartfelt song, Luann still rejects him and has her boyfriend kick him out of the Simpson house.
- Oh Crap: Kirk explains to Homer the signs of a potential divorce depends on the food you eat. One minute you are eating a delicious meal, the next you are thawing hot dogs in a sink. When Homer goes home he finds hot dogs thawing on the kitchen sink, so he obviously freaks out.
- Take Our Word for It: We don't see how Luanne drew "dignity", but everyone agrees that it was a very, very good drawing.
- Toilet Seat Divorce: Kirk and Luanne divorce over a game of Pictionary...or so it seemed. In actuality, they were fighting all night before the game started, and the game just unleashed years of frustration on Luanne's part.
- What Could Have Been: According to the DVD commentary, the episode was supposed to have Bart try and separate Homer and Marge after learning that divorced kids get more sympathy from others than kids with married parents.