The Simpsons go to Brazil to find a lost orphan after Lisa confesses that she ran up the phone bill with calls to her sponsored orphan.
The country was visited again in the episode "You Don't Have To Live Like A Referee" (2014).
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking/ I Take Offense to That Last One!: In Simpsons Confidential, John Ortved's oral history of the show, former showrunner Mike Reiss describes the Brazilian Tourist Council's compliant about this episode:"When the Simpsons came to Rio, they encountered grinding poverty, rat-infested slums, pickpockets, kidnappers, and wild monkeys. There are no wild monkeys in Rio."
- Artistic License Geography: The kidnappers take Homer from Rio to the Amazon Rainforest and back to Rio again in a single day, before sunset. As Rio de Janeiro is located on Brazil's southeast, while the rainforest is on the north, in real life those travels would take several days.
- Brazil: Several National Stereotypes references are made to things the country is famous for: soccer, sweet drinks, the favelas, bikini bottoms, Copacabana Beach, the Amazone, the Christ of Rio statue, the fact that it's one of the few Portuguese speaking countries in Latin America, the conga, the Lambada, the samba, spider monkeys, the anaconda, the Carnival of Rio, entertainer Xuxa, The Boys Of Brazil, Blame It On Rio, the song "Aquarela do Brazil", the more open sexuality compared to other countries and the cable car over Sugarcoat Mountain.
- The Capital of Brazil Is Buenos Aires: Quite some Brazilian stereotypes are shown here.
- Chekhov's Gun: Lisa warns that getting into an unlicensed cab is something you never do in Brazil. Doing so is exactly how Homer later gets kidnapped.
- Comically Missing the Point:
- Homer's shirt shows Uncle Sam devouring the world with the phrase "Try And Stop Us" and he doesn't understand how the lifeguard realized he's American.
- When Homer entered an unlicensed taxi, the driver pulled a gun and told him it was an abduction. Homer then asked if that meant he wouldn't have to pay for the ride.
- Conveniently an Orphan: Renaldo said he had the money to help the Simpsons because he didn't have parents to take it from him, like so many child stars in America do.
- Expy: The Brazilian kidnappers are a lot like César and Ugolin from "The Crepes of Wrath", though they're a lot friendlier.
- Fanservice: Xoxchitla (a parody of Brazilian entertainer Xuxa) and her children's television programme, "Teleboobies". She wears skimpy outfits and is source of many Gag Boobs.
- Fan Disservice: Homer's fat, lumpy butt in a Brazilian Speedo (which rides into his ass crack), which causes one woman to make a cross sign with her fingers, another to blind herself by throwing sand in her eyes, and another to stick a jellyfish on her head.
- It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: While the Simpsons are in Rio it's carnival. Of course, it is!
- Left the Background Music On: During the cable car ride, Marge comments that the tension is killing her, so Bart switches the music player in the cable car to another theme, but Marge says that it's making light of the situation, so they switch to another theme which satisfies Marge.
- Mating Dance: Marge and Lisa walk by a samba school, showing several suggestive dance pairs, with an instructor claiming they want to push things even further.Dance Instructor: This is where we invented the lambada and the macarena. Now we are working on our most powerful dance: the penetrada! It makes sex look like a church!
Marge: I don't think my daughter should be hearing this.
(Marge and Lisa walk away)
Dance Instructor: You cannot protect her forever! You stupid lady!
- My Country Tis of Thee That I Sting: Homer wears a "Try to Stop Us" T-shirt with Uncle Sam devouring the world on it.note
- Seldom-Seen Species: At one point, Marge and the kids come across (live) coatimundis being sold at a stand.
- Shown Their Work: For all of their flaws on Brazilian culture and life, the writers did get one thing right: Portuguese is the official language of Brazil, not Spanish (in fact, Brazil is one of four South American countries in which Spanish is not the main language. The others are Guyananote , Surinamenote and French Guiananote ).
- Stockholm Syndrome: Homer bonds with his kidnappers, who develop Lima Syndrome towards him, even compiling a scrapbook.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: A Brazilian waiter looks like the Costington employee who always says "Yeeeesssssssss" (only here, he says "Siiiiiiiimmmmmmmmm," which is Portuguese for "Yes").
- Where the Hell Is Springfield?: The orphan Lisa sponsored couldn't send her a letter because he didn't know which state Springfield was located in.Lisa: It's kind of a mystery, yes. But if you look at the clues, you should be able to figure it out.