The Simpsons head to New Orleans in this history-making episode.
During a celebratory introduction to the 635th episode of The Simpsons, things make an abrupt stop when Mr. Largo tells Lisa she should give up playing the saxophone. Convinced that her love of jazz will never turn into a career, and there will always be someone out there better than her, Lisa gives up the sax for good.
Meanwhile, the Simpson family is headed to Gainsville, Florida for a distant family members centennial birthday. However, Homer initiates a successful airline riot, and the plane is forced to land in New Orleans. The unexpected trip turns out to be exactly what the Simpsons need, as Homer quickly falls in love with the amazing food and Lisa gains a new appreciation for jazz.
With this 635th episode, The Simpsons have officially matched the Gunsmoke primetime record for the most episodes ever. The new milestone solidifies what we knew, that The Simpsons is the greatest show of our time, if not ever. For thirty years this animated family has managed to stay a significant part of our culture despite the many changes in the world, technology, and entertainment. The Simpsons deserve this and their many other records, and here’s to many more episodes to come.
The episode itself invested much of the time into celebrating the monumental achievement. The couch gag was even put off and almost did not happen. The remainder of the show felt rushed, and possibly a bit sloppy. If you don’t know what to do with The Simpsons, the safe thing to do is send them on a trip to somewhere exciting. The episode continued to show its weakness when minutes of time was fluffed up with Homer listing off nearly every classic Creole dish.
The New Orleans backdrop and the addition of a Bleeding Gums Murphy relative were not enough to make this special episode all that special. They had every opportunity to change the formula and \could have given up any story they wanted for the 635th show, but they chose to do a standard story, and for that the milestone episode was disappointing. I feel like the New Orleans setting itself was underutilized and the Bleeding Gums storyline was unestablished. Although, you need to give it up for a TV show that breaks more records than Wayne Gretzky.