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Recap / The Simpsons S29 E21 "Flander's Ladder"

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When a lightning storm occurs, Bart ends up in another deep coma and ghosts appear before him. Lisa after being humiliated by Bart decides to make his coma-dream worse. Counts as the season 29 finale.

Tropes


  • Animation Bump: The scenes of Lisa getting tangled in underwear and Bart encountering Maude's ghost are more fluidly animated than the rest of the episode.
  • Adventures In Coma Land: Bart dreams that ghosts appear before him, thanks to Lisa's intervention.
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  • Call-Back: Maude Flanders' ghost asks Bart to avenge her, and we see a clip from "Alone Again, Natura-Diddily" (in the original frame ratio) of how she died.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Deadly Distant Finale: The closing montage showcases how most of the Simpsons cast passed away, several of them executed by other members of said cast.
  • Dirty Old Man: Abe Simpson was looking at porn when the family lost Internet connection.
  • Distant Finale: The ending shows how all the Simpsons family passed away, including how Maggie never died after all. In her case, it is implied that she is immortal, but no longer human. Also Ned Flanders apparently never dies, though his scene involves outliving numerous wives and probably everyone else he cared for.
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  • Driven to Suicide: A broken heart causes Smithers to jump to his death into one of the cooling towers at the age of 50.
  • Evil Is Petty: The Deadly Distant Finale vision of Wiggum has him pull a faked accidental shooting of a man (Homer) and so has him deliberately executed by his men... because he wants his sandwich.
  • From Bad to Worse: The dream.
  • In Memoriam: The episode was dedicated to Tom Wolfe, who guest starred in season 18 episode "Moe'N'a Lisa" and passed away days before the episode's airing.
  • Klingon Promotion: Ralph ends up becoming a vicious king who rules over the land, but is poisoned by his own son at the age of 120, who immediately declares himself the new evil king.
  • Laser-Guided Karma:
    • After an 80 year old Bart causes a wheelchair-bound Skinner to die of a heart attack, Bart himself is killed when the wheelchair runs him over.
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    • Chief Wiggum knowingly has Homer gunned down, so he can take his submarine sandwich. He promptly chokes to death on said sandwich.
  • Mythology Gag: When Marge goes over their old VHS tapes and finds one with The Tracey Ullman Show, Homer briefly lapses into his original voice (and original animation style) from the shorts.
  • Police Brutality: Homer dies when he is gunned down by police, who think that a long bag he is holding contains a gun. While this would otherwise be considered an accident, it is brutality because Wiggum admits that he knew it was a sandwich and didn't tell anyone before they killed Homer so he could steal it... then chokes to death on it.
  • Real After All: Milhouse mentions the sweater Bart was wearing in his dream. Bart wonders how he knew about it.
  • Screamer Prank: Features as Lisa's main motivation to get Bart into an even worse state.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The final scene of the episode is a nod to the final scene of Six Feet Under, in which the entire Simpsons family pass away in flashforwards, along with Sia's "Breathe Me" playing in the background.
    • Ralph's death spoofs that of King Joffrey in Game of Thrones.
  • Staggered Zoom: When Bart asks how Milhouse knew about the sweater in his dream.
  • X-Ray Sparks: A variation. When Bart is struck by lighting, instead of his skeleton we see the animator's guidelines.
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