When Apu's mother from India comes to visit him to remind him of the arranged marriage that was planned for him since he was a child
, Apu decides to pose as Marge's husband while Homer is sent to live in the Springfield Retirement Castle.
- Arranged Marriage: Apu attempts to dodge an arranged marriage by claiming to already be married. After sufficient hilarity ensues, the ruse is discovered and the wedding goes forward over Apu's objections. However, his bride Manjula turns out to be a good match for him, and they remained happily married... until they had octuplets. Their marriage pretty much derailed from there.
- Bachelor Auction: Parodied when a charity auction to buy the fire department a new engine flops because all the bachelors sans Apu are creepy and/or unattractivenote . Before Apu steps up, Lisa wonders if there are any good bachelors in Springfield, and the "camera" pans over to show the firemen, all handsome hunks.
Fireman: Aww, we're never gonna get that Fire Engine.
- Apu, meanwhile, turns out to be so attractive (he owns his own business and enjoys interior decorating) that four women fight over him, then pool their money so that they can all go out with him.
Krusty: SOLD! To the five desperate chicks!" (for $700)
- When Apu tells his mother he doesn't want to get married, it at first looks like his mother will accept his decision...but then she tells him to prepare for the wedding.
- When a mouse appears in front of an elephant, the elephant looks like it'll act on the elephant stereotype of being afraid of mice...but then it squashes the mouse.
- When Apu is talking on the phone with his mother, at first it looks like Homer has a suggestion of a excuse for Apu, writing something down on a piece of paper, but it turns out he just wrote "Where are the sticky buns?"
- Big "SHUT UP!": After Apu confesses to that he went along Homer's plan, to lie that he was married to Marge because he wasn't ready to marry a woman he's never met, his mother forgives him and tells him to get some rest because he's getting married the next day, which prompts this exchange:
Homer: You know what you could do, Apu?
Apu: Shut up.
Homer: You could fake your own death.
Apu: Oh, would you shut up?
Homer: All you need is a car bomb and-
Apu: I can't believe you don't SHUT UP!!
- Bowdlerization: The UK version of this episode (Channel 4 showings only) edits out Bart and Lisa's Innocently Insensitive questions about the bindi on Apu's mother's head (particularly Bart and Lisa asking if it changes color based on mood and if it's a third eye that can see into the future). Channel 4 also cuts out the scene where Homer tries to stop the wedding dressed as Ganesha and gets chased by one of Apu's burly relatives. Justified, as the UK has an Indian population and they did it so as not to get complaints about it.
- The Bus Came Back: Manjula (from a flashback in "Much Apu About Nothing").
- Casanova Wannabe: All the contestants at the bachelor auction. Moe, in particular, walks straight to the "Rejects" section almost immediately after being introduced.
- Continuity Nod:
- Homer once again disrespects the Hindu god Ganesha, this time by dressing up as Ganesha and telling everybody to stop the wedding, or else. One of Apu's relatives attacks him for his offensive stunt.
- When Bart see Apu pass by on an elephant, he says he'd like one, to which Lisa reminded him of Stampy.
- At the wedding, an Indian band plays "Close to You", the same song that played when Homer and Marge first met, as they're dancing together.
- Couch Gag: Bart runs in and spray-paints the family onto the couch, tagging it with an "El Barto" signature before running off.
- Cover Version: An Alf Clausen instrumental of "My Guy" plays when Barney is led off the stage.
- Death Glare:
- Moe gets an audience's worth of these at the Bachelor Auction, after Krusty's introduction presents him as someone who likes "women who take their clothes off for money".
- Homer gets plenty from the Hindu attendees at Apu's wedding during his hilariously blasphemous attempt to derail the wedding by pretending to be Ganesh.
- Elephants Are Scared of Mice: Subverted when a mouse crosses the path of the elephant Apu's riding on, which raises its foot...before bringing it down and squishing the mouse.
- Epic Fail: Homer's attempt to derail the wedding by pretending to be Ganesh. One of the guests inevitably takes offence and chases Homer around the garden. It ends with him stuck up a tree, being pelted with rocks and sticks while plaintively whimpering "All will die!"
- Faking the Dead: When Apu's marriage scam is exposed to his mother and she forces him to go through with his Arranged Marriage, Homer suggests Apu do this, but Apu, having had enough of Homer's schemes, tells him to shut up.
- "Fawlty Towers" Plot: Lampshaded.
Apu: Is it me or do your plans always have some horrid web of lies?
Homer: It's you.
- Firemen Are Hot: Played Straight and subverted. The auction is to raise money for a new fire engine, but all the town's bachelors are deeply unappealing. Lisa comments "Aren't there any good bachelors in this town?", at which point we see the firefighters who are, of course, all muscular hunks.
- Good-Times Montage: Apu enjoying life as a bachelor.
- Is It Something You Eat?: Marge assumes that a Castratinote must be spicy.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: Moe walks onstage at the bachelor auction, catches all the women glaring at him, then walks straight to the rejects section.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Despite the fact Homer was trying to help Apu with all his schemes, he kind of deserved the beating he got from the elephant at the end of the episode.
- Literal Ass-Kicking: Bart kicks Moe in the pants when he bends over to wear a flower necklace, citing "Tradition".
- The Main Characters Do Everything: Apu's mother decides to have Apu married at the Simpson house, and the Simpsons help out with various aspects of the process. They even get Reverend Lovejoy to officiate the ceremony — as opposed to finding an actual Hindu priest.
- Makeover Montage: There's a montage of Apu trying out different haircuts. For every variant, Homer gives Apu a thumbs up.
- Musicalis Interruptus: Marge interrupts Krusty's closing number at the bachelor auction:
Krusty: Well, I guess that's it, folks. (singing) Had some laughs, killed some time-
Marge: Apu, you're a bachelor, get up there!
Apu: Oh please, I am nothing special.
Marge: Don't be shy. Uh, excuse me, excuse me, we have one more bachelor!
Krusty: (singing) Cashed the check- (band stops playing) WHAAAAA?!
- Noodle Incident: For some reason, Homer hates Lotus flowers. He attempts to explain why but is interrupted by Apu.
- Oh, Crap!: Homer when he realizes he forgot to inform Marge of the fake marriage plan until Apu arrived at the house with his mother.
- And again when one of the wedding guests takes offence at his hilariously blasphemous attempts to derail the wedding by pretending to be Ganesh.
Homer: Stop chasing Ganesh! You're just gonna get more wrath!
- Out-of-Character Moment: Lisa somehow shows an ignorance of Hindu culture, such as not knowing what a bindi is.
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Apu spends the entirety of the episode trying to get out of his arranged marriage, but when he meets the woman (Manjula) at the wedding he's instantly charmed. (And, she points out, if it doesn't work they can always divorce).
- She's All Grown Up: Prior to the wedding, Apu and Manjula haven't seen each other since they were children. Naturally, he's quite taken by how beautiful she's become.
- Moe walking onstage at the bachelor audition, and immediately heading to the "Rejects" section was a parody of an incident involving Redd Foxx at Las Vegas. He was planning on doing stand-up, but when he realized there were very few people in the audience, he walked straight off. This was also parodied in "Trash of the Titans" this same season.
- During the Good-Times Montage, Apu goes to a hair salon called "Hairy Shearers", in reference to Simpsons voice actor Harry Shearer.
- Shown Their Work: The writers studied Hindu wedding traditions, such as sending a lotus as a message.
- Stating the Simple Solution: Homer's first suggestion is for Apu to simply tell his mother the truth that he's not ready to get married. It's only after Apu squashes the idea that he suggested the marriage scam.
- The Thing That Would Not Leave: After finding out that Apu's not actually married to Marge, his mother decides to just have the wedding at the Simpson house. Marge goes along with it for some reason. Lisa's the only one to question why, though.
Lisa: Why is that woman still living here?