Episode - 4F07
First Aired - 12/29/1996A hurricane blows through Springfield, and Flanders' house is the only one that takes damage, leaving the Flanders' homeless and reeling. Things get worse when everyone comes together to rebuild Ned's house (rather poorly) and Ned goes on the mother of all tirades, calling everyone out for their personality flaws, then commits himself to a mental hospital, where Ned's childhood therapist reveals why he lashed out.
This episode contains examples of:
- Absurdly Ineffective Barricade: Homer takes out the back door to barricade a window.
- Achievement In Ignorance: The people of Springfield are such lousy builders they're able make a house that defies the laws of physics.
- Adults Are Useless: Ned's beatnik parents.Dr. Foster: Would you please tell your son to stop?
Ned's Father: We can't do it, man! That's discipline! That's like tellin' Gene Krupa not to go (starts banging on the desk) "boom boom bam bam bam, boom boom bam bam bam, boom boom boom bam ba ba ba ba, da boo boo tss!". We don't believe in rules, like, we gave them up when we started livin' like freaky beatniks!
Dr. Foster: You don't believe in rules, yet you want to control Ned's anger?
Ned's Mother: Yeah. You gotta help us, Doc. We've tried nothin' and we're all out of ideas!
- "I hate my parents. Lousy beatniks!"
- Alien Geometries: Ned's new house somehow has a hallway that gets smaller and smaller... with Barney trapped in a miniscule room at the end of it.
- Angrish: Ned's Verbal Tics are revealed as the result of repressed anger. It gets increasingly nonsensical as he starts his breakdown.Ned: Now calm down, Nedilly-diddly-diddly-diddly-doodly, they did their best, shodilly-iddly-iddly-diddly. Gotta be nice, hostility-ility-biddly-diddly... Aw, HELL-DIDDLY-DING-DONG-CRAP! CAN'T YOU MORONS DO ANYTHING RIGHT?!!!! [everyone gasps]
- Artistic License - Meteorology:: The storm in the episode was handled more like a tornado than a hurricane.
- Bizarrchitecture: The House that Love built, in all its shoddy glory.
- Beyond the Impossible: Ned has followed everything the bible says, even the parts that contradict the other parts.
- Butt-Monkey: Ned, of course. He loses his house in the hurricane, didn't get home insurance (because he considers insurance a form of gambling), the Leftorium was looted shortly afterwards, he gets a paper cut while reading the Bible in the church, and his newly-rebuilt house collapses soon after he sees how shoddily it was constructed. He interprets all of this as God punishing him, and he finally reaches his Rage Breaking Point when he tries to clean his glasses after the house collapses and the lens falls out and breaks.
- Call-Back: Also in the hospital is Ms. Botz from "Some Enchanted Evening".
- The Cameo: Jay Sherman is in the mental hospital."It stinks! It stinks! It stinks!"
"Yes, Mr. Sherman, everything stinks."
- Cerebus Retcon: Ned's "diddly"s are a sign of him suppressing his anger.
- Comically Missing the Point:
Ned: Rev. Lovejoy, with all that's happened to us today, I kinda feel like Job.
- After ripping on everyone else, Ned turns to Homer and quietly tells him "you are the worst human being I have ever met." Homer's response: "Hey, I got off pretty easy."
- At the Springfield church, Ned chats with Reverend Lovejoy.
Lovejoy: Well, aren't you being a tad melodramatic, uh, Ned? Also, I believe Job was right-handed.
- Continuity Nod: Two of the inmates at the asylum are the Babysitter Bandit and Jay Sherman.
- Crisis of Faith: The entire episode, where Ned's faith in God is tested when his house is destroyed, his business is looted and he screams at his friends after their attempt to repair his home fails.
- Dark Reprise: Of the opening choir of the Theme Tune during the brief Opening Shoutout.
- Deadpan Snarker: Ned Flanders becomes more prone to say bitter and sarcastic comments as his misfortune increases.Marge: Ned, Maude! You've got to go back to your house. Something incredible has happened.
Ned: Oh, what happened now? Did the rubble burn down?
- Death Row: A gag during the hurricane scene shows a condemned murderer about to be executed in the electric chair. Seconds before the warden pulls the switch, the roof is blown off the death chamber in a huge gust of wind, which also causes the straps to come off. The criminal is blown into the air, and he snarls at the prison staff, "So long, suckers!" However, his freedom is very short-lived, as he is blown into high-voltage wires and killed instantly.
- Description Cut: After Doctor Foster asks if there is anyone that particularly annoys Ned, the episode cuts to Homer getting a call.
- Dissonant Serenity: After his "Reason You Suck" Speech, Ned gets into his car, listening to "Aloha Oe", and he drives straight through the gates of Calmwood Mental Hospital.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: After Ned lashes out at Marge, Bart immediately comes to her defense and tells Ned to back off.
- Foreshadowing: Ned having trouble opening the door to his rebuilt house is your hint about how badly it was built.
- Funny Background Event: If you look closely in the panning shot of the mental hospital rooms, one of the mental patients is a caricature of Simpsons writer John Swartzwelder (and in a later scene, someone has a protest sign that reads, "Free John Swartzwelder!") and another is Lucille Botz (The Babysitter Bandit from season one's "Some Enchanted Evening," sating viewers' claims that Lucille is a Karma Houdini, as she is now caught and either copped an insanity plea or was revealed off-screen to be criminally insane).
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
Young Ned: I'm Dick Tracy! Take that, Prune Face! Now, I'm Prune Face! Take that, Dick Tracy! Now, I'm Prune Tracy! Take that, Dick-!
- Ned bullying the kids as a child:
- Gone Horribly Right: The University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol stopped young Ned's hyperactivity and aggression, but it made him incapable of expressing any anger, instead going into Verbal Tics, such as "diddly".
- Guilt by Association Gag: Ned's rant includes Lenny, whom he doesn't even know, and who just arrived and had no idea what was going on.
- Halfway Plot Switch: The first act is about the hurricane and the main characters dealing with it, then the focus shifts to Ned's background.
- Hands-Off Parenting: Ned's beatnik parents didn't believe in discipline, thus making Ned a very troublesome brat.
- Hypocritical Humor: In a deleted scene where Flanders chastises Milhouse as well.(Ned is storming through the crowd, but pauses realizing that Milhouse is staring at him nervously.)
Ned: What are you looking at, four eyes?!
Milhouse: But...But you have glasses too.
- I Hate Past Me: Ned is shocked when he is reminded of what a troublesome brat he was.
- I Resemble That Remark! crossed with a (premature) I Take Offense to That Last One!:Ned: You ugly, hate-filled man!
Moe: Hey, I may be ugly and hate-filled, but I... um, what was that third thing you said?
- Ironic Echo Cut: After the hurricane, the Simpson family finds their home intact:Marge: It just goes to show you that everything will work out if you have faith.(pan to the Flanders house, which is completely destroyed)Ned: (getting up from the ruins) It's all gone... everything... gone-diddly-on...
- Irony: Ned points out the irony of losing his house and everything the Flanders family had except the family tombstones.
- Ned loses his temper at the townspeople the one time they were genuinely trying to do something good and help him.
- Karma Houdini Warranty: Ms Botz, who Homer obliviously helped loot the Simpsons' house and evade the police all the way back in Season One, is shown kept inside a room of the mental clinic.
- Kick the Dog: Springfielders inexplicably loot Ned's Leftorium store after the hurricane. Even Kent helps a looter.Kent: Try looking in the back.
- The Last Straw: Ned's rebuilt house was shoddy all around, but what brings it down is Homer patting it.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Ned never gets angry.
- Opening Shout-Out: After the Simpsons enter their storm shelter, we see a title-only version of the opening sequence called "The Hurricane".
- Out-of-Character Moment: Ned snaps and gets angry with the people who rebuilt his house. Ned himself recognizes the severity of the outburst, and immediately drives himself to a mental institution. However, this was explained as the result of Ned repressing his rage and hatred of his parents for literally decades. The piss-poor job the citizens did rebuilding his house was just the last straw.
- Parental Neglect: Ned's parents. They didn't use any discipline at all, thus making Ned a very troublesome brat.
- Police Are Useless: Ned points this out about Chief Wiggum in his "The Reason You Suck" Speech:Ned: What do we have here? The long, flabby arm of the law?! The last case you got to the bottom of WAS A CASE OF MALLOMARS!
- Rage Against the Heavens: Upon getting a paper cut from opening a Bible, Ned has this to say:Ned: Why me, Lord? Where have I gone wrong? I've always been good. I don't drink or dance or swear. I've even kept kosher just to be on the safe side. I've done everything the Bible says! Even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff! What more can I do? I...I..I feel like I wanna yell out, but I just can't dang-darn-diddly-darn-dang-ding-dong-diddly-darned do it! I just...I... (sigh)
- Rage Breaking Point: The entire second act is Ned reaching his.
- Rant-Inducing Slight: Ned's shoddily-rebuilt home easily collapsing was frustrating enough, but what really ticks him off was one of his glasses lenses falling and shattering.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Ned gives an absolutely harsh one to the people of Springfield.Ned: Aw, hell, diddly-ding-dong crap! Can't you morons do anything right?!
(the crowd gasps)
Marge: Ned, we meant well. And everyone here tried their bes-
Ned: Well my family and I can't live in good intentions, Marge! Ohhh, your family's out of control, but we can't blame you, because you have goooooood intentions!
Bart: Hey, back off, man!
Ned: Ooh, okay, duuuuuuude, I wouldn't want you to have a cow, maaaaaaan! Here's a catchphrase you better learn for your adult years: "Hey, buddy, GOT A QUARTER?!
(the crowd gasps again)
Bart: I am shocked and appalled.
Lisa: Mr. Flanders, with all due respect, Bart didn't do anything.
Ned: (gasps sarcastically) Do I hear the sound of butting in? It's gotta be little Lisa Simpson, Springfield's answer to a question NO ONE ASKED!
(Chief Wiggum laughs)
Ned: What do we have here, the long flabby arm of the law?! The last case you got to the bottom of WAS A CASE OF MALLOMARS!
Krusty the Clown: Mallowmars, oh, that's going in the act.
Ned: Oh yeah, the Clown, the only one of you buffoons who doesn't make me laugh! And as for you, I don't know you but I'm sure you're a jerk!
Lenny: Hey, I've only been here a few minutes. What's going on?
Ned: You ugly, hate-filled man.
Moe: Hey hey, I may be ugly and hate-filled, but I — um — what was the third thing you said?
(the crowd backs away from Homer as Ned walks up to him)
Ned: Homer... you are the worst human being I have ever met.
Homer: Hey, I got off pretty easy.
- Homer gives Ned a milder one, accusing him of being afraid to be human.
- Rhetorical Request Blunder: After Ned feels so good about having his home rebuilt, he says "If you ever need a favor, look for the happiest man in Springfield!", and everybody looks at a happy man that says "No, not me, folks, he's talking about himself. But, thanks for looking!"
- Sarcasm-Blind: Homer, unable to see that Ned's comment "You are the worst human being I have ever met" is scathing criticism, instead of just a "meh"-type insult.
- Seasonal Montage: When Dr. Foster administers the University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol, which involves spanking Ned nonstop for eight months.
- Stepford Smiler: Ned had been this for decades before finally reaching a Rage Breaking Point here.
- Take That!:
- Considering how much Matt Groening hated "A Star is Burns", it shouldn't be surprising that Jay Sherman is shown as one of the patients at Calmwood Memorial Hospital, saying everything stinks.
- "I've done everything The Bible says, even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff!"
- The University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol is a subtle one to advocates of Corporal Punishment, particularly those that exaggerate its benefits believing that it pretty much solves everything bad a child does.
- Teach Him Anger: Dr. Foster decides to snap Ned out of his breakdown by having Homer anger him intentionally.
- That Makes Me Feel Angry: After Ned rips into Bart during his "The Reason You Suck" Speech, Bart says "I am shocked and appalled."
- This Is Gonna Suck: Homer (and a lot of other people) are appropriately scared when Flanders is about to give him noise.
- To Make a Long Story Short: Reverend Lovejoy's answer to whether God is punishing Ned.Lovejoy: Short answer: yes, with an if. Long answer: no... with a but.
- Tranquil Fury: Ned yells at everybody else during his rant, but when he gets to Homer, he coldly tells him "You are the worst human being I have ever met". Homer believes he got off pretty easy.
- Ungrateful Bastard: Ned commits himself because he regards himself as one.
- Yank the Dog's Chain: The townspeople band together to rebuild the Flanders' house and Ned is delighted, but he quickly realises how poorly it was built and soon after it collapses, leaving Ned no better off than before.