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Recap / The Simpsons S 18 E 5 GI Annoyed Grunt

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Homer ends up enlisted in the U.S. Army after trying to get his kids out of a recruiting deal.


  • Armed Farces: Homer is put in charge of the stupidest corp to make the military look good when they use them as enemy.
  • Armies Are Evil: The U.S. Army uses Springfield as the acting ground for an urban warfare exercise and later declares full-on War on Terror levels of martial law (including profiling) to get Homer when he goes AWOL... which he did because the colonel in charge of the exercise went full-blown General Ripper and declared that the exercise would be played with live ammunition, including giving a Kill on Sight order for Homer and his "opposing force", composed of equally dumb privates. It's even mentioned in one scene that the general's manhunt of Homer is costing the Army several billion dollars per day, but the general doesn't want to hear it.
  • Artistic License – Military: Homer tries to lure applicants to the army by offering them the chance to kill people. Anyone who did this in real life would be discharged on the spot.
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  • Continuity Nod: Mention of Homer's time in the Navy in "Simpson Tide".
  • Credits Gag: The colonel places everyone listed in the credits to front-line infantry (except guest voice Kiefer Sutherland, who is placed in the coast guard).
  • Cruella to Animals: Krusty is shown getting red paint splashed on his fur coat by Lisa and putting on a panda skin coat, panda cub slippers and monkey mittens.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: The colonel (voiced by Kiefer Sutherland). Once the boot camp is over, he sends everybody to frontline infantry.
  • Everyone Has Standards: The premise of the episode is that even Springfield is too smart for the army.
  • Failed a Spot Check: The over the top American Army ad is bad enough, but their use of the RUSSIAN song "Arise, Russian People" is this. Even those that don't speak Russian would catch on to hearing the word "Russkie", but apparently, the Army is too dumb for that.
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  • Insane Admiral: The Army Colonel gives his men real ammunition for the drill with the intent of actually killing Homer and the others he finds too worthless to be soldiers. He declares martial law on Springfield to find them and rounds up any man who even vaguely fits Homer's description.
  • Insistent Terminology: When the fat/bald people are rounded up, Superintendent Chalmers complains that he's just balding.
    Chalmers: Does anybody appreciate the "ding"?
    Skinner: I appreciate the "ding", sir.
  • Mandatory Line: Lisa doesn't have a major role in this episode because she's at a PETA protest.
  • Oh, Crap!: Bart and Milhouse when they find out the bullies no longer have to refrain from picking on them.
  • Read the Fine Print: The Colonel carries around the National Broccoli Day proclamation around, because it gives him permission to invade American cities whenever he damn well feels like it.
  • Shout-Out: The song played during the recruitment video is "Arise Ye Russian People" from Alexander Nevsky, a patriotic Russian film with an epic soundtrack composed by Sergei Prokofiev.
    • Jason Vorhees is one of the people the helicopter shoots in the terribly done army ad.
    • Cletus's Christmas card the previous December is a parody of one of the many infamous photos from the Abu Ghraib prison scandal.
    • Homer leads a small remote controlled helicopter into a room full of explosives, locking it in. The chopper lights a match to see in the dark, and is then blown up. The screen that the Colonel is watching the entire thing on switches off the camera, and up comes the That's All, Folks! Vanity Plate from Looney Tunes.
  • Soapbox Sadie: Lisa takes the moment wherein all of the Army forces are hung over and have declared an ipso facto surrender to Homer's "opposing force" to give a little speech about how the Army will never win against a city full of dedicated insurgents... she's interrupted by Marge once the speech reaches high (In-Universe) levels of Unfortunate Implications.
  • Take That!: Basically, this episode says that "Springfield is the dumbest city in America and even they're too smart for the Army".
  • Totally Radical: The army recruitment strategy is this for young teens and kids, although it fails to impress teens.
  • Unfortunate Implications: In-Universe. Marge interrupts Lisa's speech to the general when she notices that it stopped sounding like "Springfield beat you" and is becoming more like "America can never win The War on Terror".
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: According to the army soldiers who try and fail to convince the bullies to join, Springfield is in America's dumbest state.

Example of: