10. “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire”
Original Airdate: 12/17/89
Christmas is nearly ruined when Marge has to spend all of the family’s gift money to remove Bart’s tattoo. Homer becomes a department store Santa to raise more cash, but bets it all at the dog races on a hot tip from Barney. Homer and Bart save Christmas by adopting the losing greyhound, Santa’s Little Helper.
9.”The Itchy & Scratchy & Poochie Show”
Original Airdate: 2/09/97
To save the moribund Itchy & Scratchy Show, the producers do extensive market testing to determine exactly how to make the show funnier and more relevant to today’s cartoon-watching audience. They decide that a new character, a crazy, hip-hop surfer dog named Poochie is just what the show needs. It falls on Homer Simpson to breathe life into Poochie by supplying him was a voice for his funky catchphrases. Poochie does not go over well with Itchy & Scratchy’s fan base and Homer is heartbroken when he finds himself on the verge of being fired. As an act of defiance, Homer rewrites the lines of Poochie’s final episode so that the character can live on, but the producers wind up re-cutting the show to kill the wisecracking dog off.
Guest Star: Alex Rocco as Roger Meyers, Jr
8.“Homer the Great”
Original Airdate: 1/08/95
When Homer begins to notice Lenny and Carl acting strangely, he trails them and discovers that they are members of The Stonecutters, a secret organization. Homer wants to join but he can’t unless he’s the son of a member. Luckily, Grampa is a Stonecutter (and a member of the Black Panthers) so Homer’s membership is a shoo-in. Once on the inside, Homer discovers that the Stonecutters are a rigidly hierarchical group–he is given a number instead of a name, and must work his way up the ladder. But when Number One, the Stonecutters’ leader, spies a mark on Homer’s butt, he is anointed the Chosen One. As Supreme Head of the Stonecutters, Homer foolishly turns a once-great secret organization into a laughingstock. His followers rebel and start a new secret club, The Ancient Mystic Society of No Homers.
Guest Star: Patrick Stewart as Number One
7.”$springfield (Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling)”
Original Airdate: 12/16/93
When gambling is legalized in Springfield, Mr. Burns opens an extravagant casino on the boardwalk. Homer is hired as a blackjack dealer despite his counting difficulties and Marge finds herself drawn to the slots, where she begins to spend all of her time. Meanwhile, cashing in on the trend, Bart opens his own casino in his treehouse. Luckily, Bart escapes the same fate as Mr. Burns, who starts to go crazy from owning a casino. Shut up in his sterile penthouse suite, Burns stop cutting his nails and hair and starts wearing tissue boxes as slippers. Down on the casino level, Homer must force Marge to give up her slot machine addiction.
Guest Stars: Robert Goulet as himself; Gerry Cooney as himself.
6.”El Viaje de Nuestro Jomer (The Mysterious Voyage of Homer)”
Original Airdate: 1/05/97
At the annual Springfield Chili Cook-Off, Homer eats super-spicy chili made with a dangerous Guatemalan pepper grown by mental patients. The pepper has a powerful hallucinogenic effect and Homer wanders off into the darkest, strangest regions of his mind. Guided by a talking coyote, he goes on a voyage of self-discovery and realizes that he must find his soul mate. When he emerges from his fantastic trip, he returns home to Marge, who is furious at him for disappearing. Marge yells at Homer and tells him that she is not his soul mate, which sends Homer on another voyage to find out who is. Is Barney Homer’s soul mate? Is Moe? Is some guy who placed a personal ad? Homer wanders the streets of Springfield, eventually winding up at the lighthouse at the edge of town, under the impression that the lighthouse keeper is his soul mate. Ascending the stairs to the top of the lighthouse, Homer discovers that the lighthouse is operated by a computer. Enraged, Homer shatters the lighthouse’s giant light. As a giant barge approaches, Marge arrives on the scene and helps Homer save the boat. She then tells Homer that of course she’s his soul mate.
Guest Star: Johnny Cash as the Space Coyote
Original Airdate: 11/21/91
Homer invents a bizarre drink he calls the Flaming Homer. It’s so good that Moe steals his recipe, renames it the Flaming Moe, and takes credit for it. The Flaming Moe revitalizes the bartender’s business, turning Moe’s Tavern into the hottest spot in Springfield. Meanwhile, Homer is so angered by Moe’s stealing of his idea that he sabotages Moe’s chance to sell the recipe for the Flaming Moe to representatives of Tipsy McStagger’s bar and grill franchise. Realizing he shouldn’t have taken credit in the first place, Moe makes him a Flaming Homer on the house.
Guest stars: Aerosmith as themselves
4.Itchy & Scratchy & Marge”
Original Airdate: 12/20/90
Convinced that the images on “The Itchy & Scratchy Show” are a bad influence on kids, Marge wages a one-woman campaign against the show that eventually forces the creator, Roger Meyers, Jr., to curb the violence in favor of bland, lovely-dovey plots. The new format bombs and the show’s ratings plunge. Meanwhile, Marge is asked to comment on The Springfield Art Museum’s exhibition of Michelangelo’s “David.” Not finding it at all objectionable, Marge loses her standing with the anti-free speech brigade that once supported her.
3.”A Star is Burns”
Original Airdate: 3/5/95
Springfield plays host to a film festival in which various townspeople display their original work. Barney presents “Pukahontas,” a haunting meditation on his alcoholism; Apu directs “Bright Lights, Beef Jerky,” the tale of a lonely man working the loneliest shift in a small-town Kwik-E-Mart. Two other important entries are Mr. Burns’ autobiographical “A Burns for All Seasons” and Hans Moleman’s “Man Getting Hit by Football.” Despite receiving bribes from Mr. Burns, the judges choose to honor “Pukahontas” as the festival’s best film. Luckily for Moleman, his film is remade as “Football in the Groin,” a star vehicle for George C. Scott, and wins an Oscar for Best Picture.
2. “Three Men and a Comic Book”
Original Airdate: 5/9/91
Bart becomes obsessed with buying the first issue of Radioactive Man, but can’t scrape together the $100 he needs to make it his own. Enlisting Milhouse and Martin Prince, Bart is finally able to buy the comic, even though he only possesses one third of it. But things get hairy when none of them can decide who gets to keep it or for how long. The three enter into a dangerous confrontation that threatens to destroy not only their precious investment, but their friendships as well.
Guest star: Daniel Stern as The Narrator (adult Bart voice)
1.”Homer vs. the Eighteenth Amendment”
Original Airdate: 3/16/97
When Mayor Quimby and the Springfield City Hall brass ban all liquor from the town, Moe’s Tavern becomes a speakeasy. But procuring booze proves extremely difficult, especially when Rex Banner, a straight-laced government prohibition agent, comes to town. It’s up to Homer to start his own bootlegging operation to wet the whistles of Springfield’s liquor-loving masses. Dubbing himself the Beer Baron, Homer manufactures all forms of alcohol in the basement of his house, nearly getting caught by Banner at every turn. When Banner finally does catch Homer, Chief Wiggum intervenes and the prohibition agent is sent packing. When an elderly City Hall clerk re-reads the town charter, the prohibition is repealed and the people of Springfield rejoice by getting smashed.
Guest Star: Dave Thomas as Rex Banner
“To alcohol! The cause of…and solution to…all of life’s problems!