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Recap / The Simpsons S 19 E 19 Mona Leaves A

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Homer discovers that his runaway radical mother has come back and promises that her days of running from the law are over, which Homer doesn't believe. However, he soon regrets it when Mona dies during the night, and leaves Homer a bizarre last request.

Tropes:

  • Antagonist in Mourning: Grampa has always wanted to dance on Mona's grave after she left him, but doesn't feel like it now that her death finally happened. As he walks away, one can clearly hear that he's wearing tap-dancing shoes.
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  • Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie: The entire latter part of the episode revolves around Homer deciding, as a way of trying to show he's sorry, to follow Mona's instructions on how to dispose of her ashes. The third act switch occurs because it turns out that the specific time and place Mona ordered for the disposal would lead her ashes to be picked up by the wind and dumped on the air intake of Burns' rocket, shutting down its launch capabilities.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Every single thing Mona left on her will (and her diamond earrings, which Lisa took from her corpse because she left her nothing of actual monetary value) ends up being used to stop the silo launch in a Plot Tailored to the Party fashion. As well, Homer's brick-and-chain "home defense" gadget is used to fight off some Mooks.
  • Dying Alone: Mona dies alone in front of the fireplace.
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  • Halfway Plot Switch: More like "final act switch", but still most of the episode is Homer being sad about Mona not being part of his life in one way or another (her being constantly on the run, then dying), then trying to honor her final wish... and then it turns out that Mona set up Homer to raid Burns' super-secret missile silo, turning the episode into a James Bond pastiche for about five minutes.
  • I Have No Son!: The "I have no father" variation is used by Homer, telling Mona to leave come the morning because he's fed up with her scheming and that he doesn't needs her anymore.
  • I Am Not Your Father: Inverted — Homer is fed up with Mona coming and going and only using him for her Granola Girl schemes and tells her she can spend the night, but come the morning she's to Get Out! of his home and forget she ever had a son. And then she dies during the night.
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  • In Memoriam: The episode is dedicated to the mothers of a couple of writers, including Matt Groening's.
  • Moment of Silence: The moment when Homer realizes that his mother has passed away is pretty effective. There's no music and the only sounds heard are the crackling of the firewood and crickets chirping.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: When Homer puts down pie, you know things are getting serious.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: When Homer starts tearing apart the stuffed hippos that Bart programmed with insults, Lisa hesitantly tells Marge they have a "Code 4".
  • Parental Abandonment: Mona has abandoned Homer several times, once when he was a child and twice in his adult life. By the time she returns for good, he's so fed up with her leaving to be a radical protester, he wants nothing to do with her.
  • Parting Words Regret: Homer's last words to Mona were words of anger because she abandoned him so often. All of the plot past that point is led by Homer trying to make amends for that.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Minor example. When Homer notices the silo and what the ashes did to the rocket, he figures out that he became a pawn for yet another of his mother's anti-Burns schemes and he lets out an enraged "you used me again, Mom!!" to the heavens above.
  • Reality Ensues: After dealing with a James Bond-style caper courtesy of Burns' silo, Homer excitedly says that he will pour water on Mona's ashes and this will revive her. Lisa has to remind him that no, Mona is dead and there's no way to bring her back. A now-sober (and solemn) Homer thus releases the ashes into the wind.
  • Really Dead Montage: The very last thing the episode shows before showing an In Memoriam card and cutting to credits is one of these for Mona.
  • Robbing the Dead: Lisa steals the diamond earrings from Mona's corpse because she didn't like the fact that Mona hadn't left her any actual physical belongings on her will (she had left her the mission to carry on as a Granola Girl for her).
  • Thanatos Gambit: Mona pulled one with her dying wish to make Homer stop a nuclear silo which nearly gets him killed.
  • The Unfavorite: Lenny is this for his mother who prefers Carl and wishes he was her son.
  • Wham Line: At the end of Homer's apology:
    Homer: Mom? (no response) Mom?
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