So if Season 11 isn’t where The Simpsons got bad, when did it get bad? Another random internet forum I stumbled on seemed convinced that the quality dropped drastically midway through Season 12.
Today’s three episodes begin with season 12, episode 11, the appropriately titled “Worst Episode Ever.” In the typical fashion of The Simpsons, the first few scenes have little to do with the rest of the episode. Bart and Milhouse get banned from the comic book store when they keep Comic Book Guy from ripping off Martin’s mom on a box of rare Star Wars items. A heart attack forces Comic Book Guy (for some reason) to let Bart and Milhouse run the store. I wouldn’t call this episode a classic, but I do always enjoy Comic Book Guy spotlights, even if he’s a pretty negative nerd stereotype.
Favorite Quote: Comic Book Guy’s shirt “My other shirt is clean”
Season 12, episode 12 is “Tennis the Menace.” This one’s a little harder to defend. For some reason, Homer decides to put a tennis court in their backyard, which leads to everyone in town wanting to come play tennis. They’re enjoying themselves, but Homer just isn’t that good at tennis and doesn’t care to improve. The episode culminates in Venus and Serena Williams teaming up with Andre Agassi and the other famous Tennis player (who really cares?) in a doubles match. The episode has some good moments, but especially paired with the previous episode, there’s a little too much nonsense and not enough heart to even call it a good Simpsons episode.Favorite Quote: "He thought that the trip to the guillotine factory was just for fun, but it gave them the perfect excuse to shoot him."
Episode 13 is “Day of the Jackanapes.” This is an undisputed classic. It may be the most memorable Side Show Bob episode I can think of. Side show Bob gets out of jail, moves into a storage unit, does the morning announcement, and tries to use Bart to blow up Krusty. You remember the episode
Favorite Quote: “Ah, kettle chips, the perfect side dish... for revenge!”
So we had a few stinkers, but “Day of the Jackanapes” redeems the others. I’ll definitely have to watch more episodes from this season to see whether the bad tennis episode or the good Side Show Bob episode is the exception. Either way, these episodes do not even come close to “should have been canceled” status.