After her family falls ill from organic food, Lisa uses her singing voice to comfort them, and Homer sees his daughter's talent as a chance to compete on a reality talent show for kids.
"A Star is Torn" contains examples of:
- Author Tract: Parodied in Lisa's Imagine Spot of being animated on Itchy & Scratchy, where she gives a message on animal cruelty.Scratchy: For details, log onto PETA.org.
- Blatant Lies: Li'l Starmaker's disclaimer. They said they never heard of American Idol. It wasn't the first time a Simpsons episode used that sort of lie.
- Continuity Nod: The opening lyrics to Lisa's audition song are, "I've been to Paris and London and Tokyo town..."
- Irony: Homer wrote a song praising Springfield (with most of the tune plagarised) and then calls it a "godforsaken hellhole".Marge: But your song said you liked Springfield.
Homer: I wrote it about Shelbyville, then changed the names.
- Privileged Rival: Lisa wins because Homer tricks Cameron into singing a song that describes him as a spoiled brat who has no shame about flaunting his wealth.
- Stage Mom: Homer becomes a gender-flipped case, where he beats up other people to get Lisa what she wants. Lisa finds it all sickening and fires him as her manager.Lisa: Dad, I'm sorry you're hurt, but you left me no choice. You were obnoxious at a level not even permitted in show business.
Homer: Do you know the hours I worked, the people I had to yell at, the tires I had to slash?
Lisa: No one asked you to yell and slash!
Homer: IT'S CALLED SCHMOOZING!
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Clarissa Wellington could've been a major rival for Lisa in the Li'l Starmaker competition. However, she is voted off in third place, in favor of Cameron.
- Thing-O-Meter: Krusty uses an applause-o-meter so he won't have to pay attention to the songs.