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Recap / The Simpsons S8 E8 "Hurricane Neddy"

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"God welcomes His victims"

Original air date: 12/29/1996

Production code: 4F07

A hurricane blows through Springfield, and Flanders' house is the only one that takes damage, leaving the Flanders homeless and reeling. Things get worse when everyone comes together to rebuild Ned's house (rather poorly) and Ned goes on the mother of all tirades, calling everyone out for their personality flaws, then commits himself to a mental hospital, where Ned's childhood therapist reveals why he lashed out.

This episode contains examples of:

  • Absurdly Ineffective Barricade: Homer takes out the back door to barricade a window.
  • Achievement In Ignorance: The people of Springfield are such lousy builders they're able to make a house that defies the laws of physics.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: Both Homer and Ned find the "maximum hostility factor" (which boils down to Homer saying he had sexual intercourse with Maude) absolutely hilarious.
    Homer: I engaged in intercourse with your spouse or significant other. (aside) Now that's psychiatry! (to Ned) Huh? Huh?
    Ned: (laughs) Very funny, wiseguy.
  • Adults Are Useless: Ned's beatnik parents.
    Dr. Foster: Would you please tell your son to stop?
    Ned's Father: We can't do it, man! That's discipline! That's like tellin' Gene Krupa not to go (starts banging on the desk) "boom boom bam bam bam, boom boom bam bam bam, boom boom boom bam ba ba ba ba, da boo boo tss!". We don't believe in rules, like, we gave them up when we started livin' like freaky beatniks!
    Dr. Foster: You don't believe in rules, yet you want to control Ned's anger?
    Ned's Mother: Yeah. You gotta help us, Doc. We've tried nothin' and we're all out of ideas!
  • An Aesop:
    • Repressing your rage and other negative emotions is not a good way to deal with them because eventually you'll lose control over them and have no coping mechanism.
    • Expressing anger isn't always a bad thing, when it's done appropriately and moderately then it can be a healthy response to a bad situation. Suppressing your anger and letting it boil over will get everyone hurt.
    • Disciplining your child is hard, but if you don't do it, they'll grow up to be cruel and disrespectful. On the other hand, if you over-discipline your child then you may cause problems for them in later life. Additionally, physically disciplining children doesn't work at all. Instead of simply setting boundaries for young Ned, Dr. Foster decided to spend 8 straight months spanking him, which actually desensitized him and led him to suppress his feelings instead of being taught how to deal with them in a healthy way.
    • Make sure you have insurance for your house and/or place of business. You never know when you might need it.
    • Just because you mean well doesn't mean that your actions are helpful. Doing your best in an area you have no experience in might make you feel good, but it has a good chance of either doing nothing or causing harm.
  • Age-Inappropriate Art: Todd is seen wearing what is very obviously a Butthole Surfers t-shirt, but he is drawn so that it reads "Buttho Surfers" or in a wide shot where the full name is illegible.
  • The Alleged Expert: The entire town of Springfield, when they bundle together to try to rebuild Flanders' home.
  • The Alleged House: The rebuilt Flanders home. It starts with the main door's handle popping off, then it goes through one of the corridors having a painted dirt floor (because they ran out of tiles), the main electrical room having lousy shielding and so there is an absurd lot of static and then it goes straight to Alien Geometries territory. We don't get to see any other of the myriad problems there are inside... not that it matters, because Homer patting the door frame makes the whole building fall apart.
  • Alien Geometries: Ned's new house somehow has a hallway that gets smaller and smaller... with Barney trapped in a minuscule room at the end of it.
    Barney: Come on in! It's your master bedroom. [Ned closes the door] Ow, my nose!
  • "Anger Is Healthy" Aesop: Ned has had behavioral problems since he was a child and the method used to control Ned's anger overcorrected it and caused Ned to bottle up any feeling of anger, no matter how justified he is to be angry. After a series of unpredictable tragedies, Ned has a breakdown and berates the entire town for failing to help him in his time of need (despite a well-intentioned but ultimately flawed attempt at rebuilding his house). The lesson of the episode is that expressing anger isn't automatically evil, it just needs to be controlled and done appropriately.
    Homer: [directly towards mirror] Aw that's it, you just can't insult this guy. You call him a moron and he just sits there, grinning moronly.
    Flanders: [to mirror] Hi, neighbor!
    Homer: You know what your problem is, Flanders? You're afraid to be human.
    Flanders: Ho ho, now why would I be afraid of that?
    Homer: Because humans are obnoxious, sometimes. Humans hate things.
    Flanders: Well, maybe a few of them do... back East.
  • Angrish: Ned's Verbal Tics are revealed as the result of repressed anger. It gets increasingly nonsensical as he starts his breakdown.
    Ned: Now calm down, Nedilly-diddly-diddly-diddly-doodly, they did their best, shodilly-iddly-iddly-diddly. Gotta be nice, hostility-ility-biddly-diddly... AW, HELL-DIDDLY-DING-DONG-CRAP! CAN'T YOU MORONS DO ANYTHING RIGHT?! [everyone gasps]
  • Anguished Outburst: Ned suffers greatly due to the hurricane blowing his house down, the Leftorium being looted, and The Alleged House his friends and neighbors built literally overnight collapses. The final straw was him trying to clean his glasses only for a lens to fall out of the frame, which leads to him unleashing his "The Reason You Suck" Speech on those present.
  • Answer Cut: Right after Dr. Foster asks Ned if there is anybody he hates in order for them to help with his anger therapy, we cut to Homer getting a call summoning him to Calmwood.
  • Anti-Climax: The Simpsons don't really know how to storm-proof their house — Homer even removes his door so he has something to board up his window with — but when they leave the cellar, there is absolutely no damage, and it seems the hurricane even reattached the door.
  • Anyone Remember Pogs?: Marge finds a Rubik's Cube in the basement during the storm, and the family decides to try to solve it; they have no more luck than most people did when it was popular, leading to Marge eventually getting frustrated, and yelling, "Now I remember why I threw this down here in the first place!" before tossing it.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: When Ned gets pushed too far, his anger frightens practically everyone in Springfield.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Ned has followed everything the Bible says, even the parts that contradict the other parts.
  • Big Storm Episode: The first half of the episode is about Springfield preparing for and dealing with the aftermath of a hurricane coming through town.
  • Bizarrchitecture: The House That Love Built, in all its shoddy glory.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: A hilarious instance of Ned Flanders roasting Bart by imitating his Totally Radical mannerisms...
    Bart: Hey, back off, man!
    Ned: Ohhh, okay, duuuuuuude! I wouldn't want you to have a cow, MAAAAAAAN! Here's a Catchphrase you better learn for your adult years: "Hey, buddy, GOT A QUARTER?!"
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Ned was this as a child, as revealed in his backstory, being hyperactive, violent and foul-mouthed. Ned is horrified to remember this.
  • Bubblegum Popping: Dr. Foster tells Homer that Ned needs to meet someone extremely irritating so he could release his anger. During his explanation, Homer blows an increasingly large bubble. As Foster asks, "Homer, can you be that annoying?" the bubble pops all over Foster's face.
  • Butt-Monkey: Ned, of course. He loses his house in the hurricane, didn't get home insurance (because he considers insurance a form of gambling), the Leftorium was looted shortly afterwards, he gets a paper cut while reading the Bible in the church, and his newly-rebuilt house collapses soon after he sees how shoddily it was constructed. He interprets all of this as God punishing him, and he finally reaches his Rage Breaking Point when he tries to clean his glasses after the house collapses, and the lens falls out and breaks.
  • The Cameo: Among the mental hospital patients are staff writer John Swartzwelder, Lucille Botz the Babysitter Bandit, and Jay Sherman.
    Jay: It stinks! It stinks! It stinks!
    Doctor: Yes, Mr. Sherman, everything stinks.
  • Cerebus Retcon: Ned's "diddly"s are a sign of him suppressing his anger.
  • Comically Missing the Point:
    • After ripping on everyone else, Ned turns to Homer and quietly tells him "you are the worst human being I have ever met." Homer's response: "Hey, I got off pretty easy", because Ned didn't actually yell at him.
    • At the Springfield church, Ned chats with Reverend Lovejoy.
      Ned: Rev. Lovejoy, with all that's happened to us today, I kinda feel like Job.
      Lovejoy: Well, aren't you being a tad melodramatic, uh, Ned? Also, I believe Job was right-handed.
  • Continuity Nod: Two of the inmates at the asylum are the Babysitter Bandit and Jay Sherman.
  • Couch Gag: The couch is replaced with a "Vend-A-Couch". Homer puts a coin in, but nothing happens. Homer pounds on the wall until the couch falls on him.
  • Creator Cameo:
    • A caricature of John Swartzwelder can be seen shutting the door of a room in Calmwood Mental Hospital. Later in the episode, during the scene where the townsfolk are welcoming Ned back, someone can be seen holding a sign that says "Free John Swartzwelder".
    • During the sequence where Flanders yells at the town, a man with a ponytail and wearing a white shirt who is a caricature of director Bob Anderson can be seen.
  • Crisis of Faith: The entire episode, where Ned's faith in God is tested when his house is destroyed, his business is looted and he screams at his friends after their attempt to repair his home fails.
  • Curse Cut Short:
    Young Ned: Bam! I’m Dick Tracy! Take that, Prune-Face! Now I’m Prune-Face! Bam! Take that, Dick Tracy! Now I’m Prune Tracy! Take that, Dick-
    Dr. Foster: Ned, stop it at once! Stop it!
  • Dark Reprise: Of the opening choir of the Theme Tune during the brief Opening Shoutout.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Ned Flanders becomes more prone to say bitter and sarcastic comments as his misfortune increases.
    Marge: Ned, Maude! You've got to go back to your house. Something incredible has happened.
    Ned: Oh, what happened now? Did the rubble burn down?
  • Death Row: A gag during the hurricane scene shows a condemned murderer about to be executed in the electric chair. Seconds before the warden pulls the switch, the roof is blown off the death chamber in a huge gust of wind, which also causes the straps to come off. The criminal is blown into the air, and he snarls at the prison staff, "So long, suckers!" However, his freedom is very short-lived, as he is blown into high-voltage wires and killed instantly.
  • Dissonant Serenity: After his "The Reason You Suck" Speech, Ned gets into his car, listening to "Aloha Oe", and he drives straight through the (locked) gates of Calmwood Mental Hospital. He also, very cheerily, adds the threat that he will run over anybody who pisses him off to his announcement that he will no longer bottle up his rage.
  • Double-Meaning Title: "Hurricane Neddy" could be either the storm that ravaged Ned's house, or his furious tirade against his neighbors.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Showing how this can still happen as late as the eighth season when it comes to a long-running show like this one, Dr. Foster mentions that he first met Ned about thirty years ago, and Ned looks to be about Bart's age in the flashbacks, which would put the present-day Ned in his late 30s or early 40s. In "Viva Ned Flanders" two seasons later, Ned would be established as actually being 60 years old, which has since remained his canonical age.
  • Epic Fail: The Springfielders' attempt at rebuilding Ned's house just keeps getting worse, starting at loose nails before revealing the toilet's in the kitchen, one room is so poorly wired that it generates static outside, they ran out of floorboards and painted the dirt and a hallway shrinks to the point of becoming Alien Geometries. And then the entire house falls down, finally driving Ned to lash out.
  • Epiphany Therapy: Ned is released from the mental hospital and the episode quickly wrapped up as soon as he admits hating his "lousy beatnik" parents, revealing he's stopped repressing his anger.
    Dr. Foster: He said he hates his parents! Do you know what that means?
    Colleague: Uh... what do you think?
    Foster: It means he's cured!
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: After Ned lashes out at Marge, Bart immediately comes to her defense and tells Ned to back off.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Homer goes outside of the house when the hurricane seemingly stops, despite Lisa warning him it's the eye of the hurricane. He then sees the Bowlarama flying past high up in the sky.
    Homer: Hmm, I don't remember a bowling alley being there—(screams, realizing Lisa was right)
  • Foreboding Fleeing Flock: Parodied;
    [Santa's Little Helper struggles to move forward against the wind]
    Homer: What is it, boy? Fire? Earthquake? Hippies?
    [the wind overpowers SLH and blows him backwards into the air]
    Homer: (gasp) Hurricane!! Somehow, the animals are always the first to know.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • While complaining to God, Ned says he feels like he wants to yell out but just can't do it. Sure enough, when things finally push him far enough, Ned finds himself yelling at the rest of Springfield when their incompetence pushes him too far.
    • When Flanders sees his rebuilt home, Homer says "We didn't have the best tools or all the know-how...". As he tours the house, we see Homer wasn't kidding when he said that.
    • And then, Ned having trouble opening the door to his rebuilt house is another hint about how badly it was built.
  • Funny Background Event: If you look closely in the panning shot of the mental hospital rooms, one of the mental patients is a caricature of Simpsons writer John Swartzwelder (and in a later scene, someone has a protest sign that reads, "Free John Swartzwelder!") and another is Lucille Botz (The Babysitter Bandit from season one's "Some Enchanted Evening", sating viewers' claims that Lucille is a Karma Houdini, as she is now caught and either copped an insanity plea or was revealed off-screen to be criminally insane).
  • Glad I Thought of It: When Dr. Foster and his assistant are observing Homer and Ned's interaction, Dr. Foster mentions several observations, and the assistant acts as if he knows exactly what is going on. When Ned finally has a breakthrough when he lambasts his beatnik parents, the doctor and his assistant share this exchange:
    Dr. Foster: He just said he hates his parents. Do you know what that means?
    Assistant: Um, what do you think?
    Dr. Foster: It means he's cured.
    Assistant: That's what I said.
  • Gone Horribly Right: The University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol stopped young Ned's hyperactivity and aggression, but it made him incapable of expressing any anger, instead going into Verbal Tics, such as "diddly".
  • Grew a Spine: By the end of the episode, Ned vows to no longer repress his anger and to run over anyone who pisses him off with his car.
  • Guilt by Association Gag: Ned's rant includes Lenny, whom he doesn't even know, and who just arrived and had no idea what was going on.
  • Halfway Plot Switch: The first act is about the hurricane and the main characters dealing with it, then the focus shifts to Ned's background.
  • Hands-Off Parenting: Deconstructed.
    • Ned's parents didn't believe in discipline, arguing it conflicted with their beatnik ideals. This led to Ned being a very troublesome brat as a child before Dr. Foster's spanking treatment caused him to repress his anger.
    • Ned also criticizes Marge for this, pointing out that she just stands by and does nothing while her family is "out of control."
  • Hard Truth Aesop: Even the kindest most wonderful people on the planet can still get angry from time to time. Also, they may have major issues or baggage you don't learn about until it comes out all at once.
  • Hates Their Parent: Ned's parents were lazy beatniks who didn't even try to raise him properly or discipline him when he got out of line, which caused him to grow up to be an unruly, violent little troublemaker. During his Epiphany Therapy, Ned remarks he hates them, implied to be because of said Hands-Off Parenting.
  • Hidden Disdain Reveal: At the end of Ned's "The Reason You Suck" Speech to the entire town, he reveals to Homer that he considers him to be the worst human being he's ever met.
  • Humans Are Flawed: In a rare moment of insight, Homer expresses this view to Ned. Moreover, he tells Ned that it's perfectly normal to be flawed.
  • Hypocritical Humor: A deleted scene shows Flanders chastising Milhouse as well.
    (Ned is storming through the crowd, but pauses realizing that Milhouse is staring at him nervously.)
    Ned: What are you looking at, four eyes?!
    Milhouse: But... but you have glasses too.
  • I Hate Past Me: Ned is shocked when he is reminded of what a troublesome brat he was.
  • I Resemble That Remark!: Crossed with a (premature) I Take Offense to That Last One when Moe responds to Ned telling him off:
    Ned: You ugly, hate-filled man!
    Moe: Hey! Hey! I may be ugly and hate-filled, but I... um, what was that third thing you said?
  • Ironic Echo Cut: After the hurricane, the Simpson family finds their home intact:
    Marge: It just goes to show you that everything will work out if you have faith.
    (pan to the Flanders' house, which is completely destroyed)
    Ned: (getting up from the ruins) It's all gone... everything... gone-diddly-on...
  • Irony:
    • Ned points out the irony of losing his house and everything the Flanders family had except the family tombstones.
    • Ned loses his temper at the townspeople in one of the few times they were genuinely trying to do something good and help him.
    • Ned calling Homer the worst person he's ever met. The latter later becomes the one to help him with his anger problems.
  • Jerkass Has a Point:
    • Although Ned has only to blame himself for failing to buy home insurance in the first place and he put too much faith in God restoring everything back to order for him, when he lashes out at the Springfieldians for failing to build him a proper house, he does make some good points about them all being too incompetent, selfish, and slovenly to get so much as a thanks from him.
    • Homer has been a major Jerkass to Ned both before and after this episode, but he makes a valid point that it's important to express anger occasionally instead of repressing it until it becomes uncontrollable.
      Homer: You know what your problem is, Flanders? You're afraid to be human.
      Flanders: Ho ho, now why would I be afraid of that?
      Homer: Because humans are obnoxious, sometimes. Humans hate things.
      Flanders: Well, maybe a few of them do... back East.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty:
  • Kick the Dog: Springfielders inexplicably loot Ned's Leftorium store after the hurricane (the one which destroyed Ned's house and rendered him and his family homeless). Even Kent helps a looter.
    Kent: Try looking in the back.
  • The Last Straw: Ned's rebuilt house was shoddy all around, but what brings it down is Homer patting it.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Ned's "The Reason You Suck" Speech ranting can be seen as what the writers really think of the characters.
  • Made of Iron: Rod was apparently blown through a tree trunk during the hurricane. Somehow, his skull wasn't caved in from that kind of impact.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Rod, who was blown headfirst through a tree trunk:
  • Misdirected Outburst: The people of Springfield and the Simpsons in particular have given Ned plenty of grief over the years, which he's taken with unfailing patience. His upset and frustration over losing his home causes him to finally give them the tongue-lashing they arguably deserve at the moment when they least deserve it, having turned out in force to try to rebuild his house, even though they did the job you'd expect from a bunch of well-intentioned amateurs. In fact, Ned arguably brought the problem on himself by refusing to buy insurance.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After his tirade, Ned turns himself into a mental hospital, having calmed down and realised he was way out of line.
  • Never My Fault: Ned's opening salvo is aimed at Marge when she tries to deflect the shoddiness of the new house by stating everyone meant well and tried their best. He quickly blasts her for carrying this mindset in regards to her family; they're out of control but at least they have "good intentions."
  • Nice Guy: The Happiest Man in Springfield, who politely clarifies to everyone that Ned was referring to himself and thanks them for looking.
  • Noodle Incident: What turned Flanders' dad from an army commander into an anti-discipline beatnik?
  • Not So Above It All: An example made out of Ned's anger and rage:
    • His rage against Marge: becoming angry over something that could be mediated and solved peacefully, or having enough of ignorance and just going straight at it;
    • His rage against Bart: discarding the forgiveness card for the town firebrand/troublemaker and giving him a piece of his mind;
    • His rage against Lisa: showcasing outrage and distaste for know-it-alls and perfectionists as well as her trying to force her opinions like her vegetarianism onto people;
    • His rage against Wiggum: showing his outrage and dissidence at the incompetence and flaws of authority;
    • His rage against Krusty: showing his criticisms of people who he doesn't find funny;
    • His rage against Lenny: shows how he isn't even immune to the idiom of "Not everyone will like you" and how he can't like someone for no reason;
    • His rage against Moe: shows how he can even judge books by their cover and people by their appearances and surface outward personalities;
    • His rage against Milhouse: shows how even he can be an outright bully;
    • His rage against Homer: shows how much he can hate someone.
  • Oh, Crap!: Dr. Foster, when he got a call that Ned has committed himself.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Ned rarely gets angry, and this episode sees him going on a rage-fueled tirade against the whole town.
  • Opening Shout-Out: After the Simpsons enter their storm shelter, we see a title-only version of the opening sequence called "The Hurricane."
  • Out-of-Character Moment: Ned snaps and gets angry with the people who rebuilt his house. Ned himself recognizes the severity of the outburst, and immediately drives himself to a mental institution. However, this was explained as the result of Ned repressing his rage and hatred of his parents for literally decades. The piss-poor job the citizens did rebuilding his house was just the last straw.
  • Parental Neglect: Ned's parents. They didn't use any discipline at all, thus making Ned a very troublesome brat. See Adults Are Useless, above.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Even when Ned rips into Moe, he still acknowledges him as a person; even Moe was surprised by this. See I Resemble That Remark! above.
    • Despite his animosity towards Ned, Homer acts pretty nice to him throughout, joining the rest of the town in building him a new home (even if it was terrible), helps the doctors in teaching him anger, and is happy for Ned at the end.
  • Police Are Useless: Ned points this out about Chief Wiggum in his "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
    Ned: What do we have here? The long, flabby arm of the law?! The last case you got to the bottom of WAS A CASE OF MALLOMARS!
  • Poster Patchup: In Rod and Todd's room, Todd takes down a poster of Krusty the Clown. Bart explains that the poster was load-bearing and the wall and ceiling immediately begin to crumble.
  • Precision F-Strike: Ned, a character who hardly ever swears, begins his rant against the Springfieldians with "AW, HELL-DIDDLY-DING-DONG-CRAP!"
  • Pushover Parents: A flashback shows that Ned's parents were beatnicks who didn't believe in punishing their son for his unruly behavior, but on the other hand didn't want the behavior to continue.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Upon getting a paper cut from opening a Bible, Ned has this to say:
    Ned: Why me, Lord? Where have I gone wrong? I've always been good. I don't drink or dance or swear. I've even kept kosher just to be on the safe side. I've done everything the Bible says! Even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff! What more can I do? I...I..I feel like I wanna yell out, but I just can't dang-darn-diddly-darn-dang-ding-dong-diddly-darned do it! I just...I... (sigh)
  • Rage Breaking Point: The Flanders' house got destroyed by a hurricane and Ned isn't impressed with the rather shoddy result of the rest of the townspeople's efforts to rebuild it for him. He tries to be nice as usual, but, when his glasses break as he tries to clean them, he finally snaps and goes on a tirade, delivering a mass "The Reason You Suck" Speech to everyone present. Particularly notable in this case, because he's been building up his rage for decades. Hell, it's the reason he has his Verbal Tic.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
  • Rhetorical Request Blunder: After Ned feels so good about having his home rebuilt, he says "If you ever need a favor, look for the happiest man in Springfield!", and everybody looks at a happy man that says "No, not me, folks, he's talking about himself. But, thanks for looking!"
  • Sanity Slippage: After his ranting, Ned just plants a fake smile on his face, and hums disjointedly when driving himself back to Calmwood.
  • Seasonal Montage: When Dr. Foster administers the University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol, which involves spanking Ned nonstop for eight months.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: The nurse who brought Ned his medication recognized him from all those years ago and is the one who told Dr. Foster what happened, getting him involved and revealing to us the source of Ned's repressed anger problems.
  • Soapbox Sadie: Ned calls out Lisa on being one of these during his long rant, calling her "the answer to a question no-one asked."
  • So Long, Suckers!: A convict says this as he is blown out of the electric chair by the hurricane.
  • Stepford Smiler: Ned had been this for decades before finally reaching a Rage Breaking Point here.
  • Stopped Dead in Their Tracks: The people of Springfield do such a terrible job that the house they built for the Flanders' immediately collapses from a slight touch. As Ned tries to step away and wipe his glasses, one lens slips out and shatters, and Ned stops in his tracks and says:
    Ned: Now, calm down, Neddly-diddly-diddly-diddly-diddly. They did their best, shoddily-iddly-iddly-diddly. Gotta be nice, hostiddly-diddly-diddly-diddly-ah-HELL-diddly ding-dong-CRAP! Can't you morons do anything RIGHT?!
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • As it turns out, a house built quickly without any expertise isn't bound to stand for very long.
    • The spanking that "cured" Ned in his childhood didn't address the underlying issues - the problem remained, he just learned to hide it to avoid punishment. If you only cure the symptoms without addressing the cause, chances are it'll eventually come back.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That: The Doctor treating Ned assumes that Homer going off script and insulting Ned of his own will was lines written by his assistant, who meekly responds “Did you like it?”.
  • Take That!:
    • Considering how much Groening hated "A Star is Burns", it shouldn't be surprising that Jay Sherman is shown as one of the patients at Calmwood Memorial Hospital, saying everything stinks, though one could interpret it as a Take That! against Groening.
      Doctor: Yes, Mr. Sherman. Everything stinks.
    • "I've done everything The Bible says, even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff!"
    • The University of Minnesota Spankalogical Protocol is a subtle one to advocates of Corporal Punishment, particularly those that exaggerate its benefits believing that it pretty much solves everything bad a child does.
  • Teach Him Anger: Dr. Foster decides to snap Ned out of his breakdown by having Homer anger him intentionally. Subverted when it doesn't work, as Homer's scripted insults fall flat. Instead, when Homer starts probing Ned about things that do annoy him, it gets him to rant about the Post Office for a bit before saying he hates his parents.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: After Ned rips into Bart during his "The Reason You Suck" Speech, Bart says "I am shocked and appalled."
  • This Is Gonna Suck: Homer (and a lot of other people) are appropriately scared when Flanders is about to give him noise.
  • Throwing Out the Script: Dr. Foster gives Homer a set of cue cards with insults to read in order to set him off. When none of them work, Homer throws them away and simply helps Ned find something to express his anger about.
  • To Make a Long Story Short: Reverend Lovejoy's answer to whether God is punishing Ned.
    Lovejoy: Short answer: yes, with an if. Long answer: no... with a but.
  • Tranquil Fury: Ned yells at everybody else during his rant, but when he gets to Homer, he coldly tells him "You are the worst human being I have ever met." Homer believes he got off pretty easy.
  • Unexpectedly Dark Episode: The Flanderses' house gets destroyed by a hurricane and Ned goes crazy, shouting at everyone about their biggest flaws. It also reveals that Ned's Verbal Tic is due to years of repressed anger due to his parents that would never punish him.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: After Ned's tantrum towards the townsfolk who rebuilt his house (albeit incompetently), Ned commits himself because he regards himself as one.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Marge's calls to help have the Flanders' home rebuilt was a very meaningful action. The problem was that she recruited people who clearly have no knowledge, skill, or right to be anywhere near building a house that was the last straw for him. In fact, she's the first person he lashes out at individually, tearing apart her defense that they meant well and did their best by pointing out he and his family can't live in "good intentions".
  • Wham Episode: This episode reveals that Ned Flanders' iconic Verbal Tic was a result of Ned forcibly suppressing his anger for years on end, completely turning what we knew about him on its head.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After Flanders' epic tantrum, the rest of the episode is spent dealing with the problem of his long-repressed anger, and how he and his family get their house next to the Simpsons restored (with no insurance) is never explained.
  • World of Jerkass: Ned Flanders, Springfield's resident Nice Guy, finally catches the Jerkass Ball and gets to call out the entire town for being this.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: The townspeople band together to rebuild the Flanders' house and Ned is delighted, but he quickly realizes how poorly it was built and soon after it collapses, leaving Ned no better off than before. It's also what causes Ned to have his breakdown.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: One of the buildings destroyed by the hurricane is Ye Old Harpsichord Shoppe.


Video Example(s):


"Humans hate things!"

Homer accuses Ned of being afraid to be human through constantly suppresing his anger citing that humans can sometimes be obnoxious. Ned eventually admits to hating his parents calling them lousy beatniks and remarks that it felt good after finally admitting something he hates.

How well does it match the trope?

4.75 (12 votes)

Example of:

Main / HumansAreFlawed

Media sources: