Homer is forced to convert Lisa's room into a cellular phone tower to pay off damages done to the Bill of Rights at the local Smithsonian, and she hates him as a result. They try to reconcile with each other by trying sensory deprivation tanks. Meanwhile, Marge gets addicted to eavesdropping on cell phone calls.
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: When Lisa looks at Abraham Lincoln's hat.Lisa: America's greatest citizen summed up in one piece of clothing.Homer: (offscreen) Fonzie's jacket!
- Buried Alive: The Flanders find Homer's deprivation tank, think it's a coffin, and bury it. Luckily for Homer, the tank breaks through the soil into a pipe and washes out to a beach.
- Call-Back: Lisa says that her favorite movie used to be The Little Mermaid. In "I Married Marge", when Marge thought she was pregnant, Lisa suggested Ariel as a name if the baby turned out to be a girl, named after the then-latest Disney princess.
- Calling the Old Man Out: Lisa does this to Homer for belittling her and saying that just because he thinks something doesn't make it so, when he demands the harsh antacids for her instead of herbal tea (which she wanted).
- Denied Food as Punishment: Bart and Lisa take turns picking the family activity Homer will take them. When Bart reveals that he traded his turn for Lisa's dessert, resulting in Homer having to go to a boring place, Homer punishes him by denying dessert. Bart then offers to trade his next activity choice for Lisa's dessert. To Homer's dismay, Lisa agrees.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Referenced when Marge eavesdrops on Skinner and Agnes's phone call.Agnes: I don't want you driving through tunnels! You know what that symbolizes!
Skinner: But mother, it cuts ninety minutes off my drive!
Agnes: No tunnels!
- Eye Cam: Lisa is in a sensory deprivation tank and sees the world from Homer's perspective. Lisa-as-Homer is falling asleep and struggling to keep his eyes open during a ballet recital. Shown with the Eye Cam effect.
- Hypocrisy Nod: When Marge tries to chew Bart out for tricking her into thinking a criminal was breaking into the house, Bart retorts that "It serves you right for eavesdropping", and Marge has to concede it's a fair point.
- Literal Metaphor:
- Homer using the Bill of Rights to shield himself against the guards, complete with the line, "I am so sick of people hiding behind the Bill of Rights!"
- Homer tells Lisa that he won't ever let her drift away from him... as he's standing on the down escalator.
- Made Out to Be a Jerkass: While in the deprivation tank, Lisa imagines herself as Snowball II. When Maggie tries to grab her with dirty hands, she swats her away, resulting in Marge hitting her with a broom for hitting Maggie.
- Noodle Incident: The Little Mermaid used to be Lisa's favorite movie until Homer taped over it.
- Parents as People: Lisa learns this by seeing herself from Homer's perspective: badgering him for sleeping through a ballet recital. Lisa realizes that while her dad is far from perfect, he loves her enough to take her to places that only she would enjoy.
- Parents Know Their Children: Hilariously subverted. Marge initially mistakes Principal Skinner's voice for Maggie's.
- Plot Hole: The lease on the new age store wasn't up for months. Their was no reason for the repo men to show up and start hauling everything away except to move the story forward.
- Police Brutality: The security officers who cornered Homer seemed pretty disgusted at the fact that Homer was protected by the Bill of Rights, and seemed pretty happy when he accidentally licked off the part prohibiting cruel and unusual punishment.
- Shout-Out: When Lisa imagines herself as Snowball II, she says Maggie moving towards her, saying "Get your sticky hands off me!"
- Skewed Priorities:
- Homer grabs the Bill of Rights and sits down in Archie Bunker's chair, batting it around a bit. The security guards, aiming their pistols at him, demanding only that he get out of Archie's chair, at first. They are even more outraged when they realize he has the Bill of Rights.
- When Homer - half-asleep - is listening to a Big Band/Standards radio station and the DJ is doing a "remember when" spiel to set up the next song - Homer thinks he's traveled back in time and plans to warn people about Adolf Hitler coming into power — and getting five-cent ice cream.
- Tempting Fate: Chief Wiggum tells Ralph that "crime doesn't take a vacation". Cut to Fat Tony and his goons in beachwear playing with a beach ball.
- Unsettling Gender Reveal: One of the phone calls Marge listens to features Krusty:Krusty: I need you to get me out of another jam. I picked up this chick last night. At least I thought she was a chick.
- Villains Out Shopping: Fat Tony, Legs and Louie are seen on the beach in swimming costumes (plus suspenders for Fat Tony) playing with a beach ball when Homer's tank washes up. They're still carrying their gun holsters with them without any other clothes, though.
- Whale Egg: The episode is the Trope Namer, but not an actual example of it. Homer's deprivation tank washes up on the beach and Ralph refers to it as a whale egg.