Miracle on Evergreen Terrace

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"Miracle on Evergreen Terrace"
The Simpsons episode
Episode no.Season 9
Episode 10
Directed by Bob Anderson
Written by Ron Hauge
Production code5F07
Original air dateDecember 21, 1997
Guest appearance(s)

Alex Trebek as himself

Episode features
Chalkboard gag "Rudolph's red nose is not alcohol-related" [1]
Couch gag Somebody shakes up a snow globe, which contains the Simpsons sitting on a couch. [2]
Commentary Matt Groening
Mike Scully
George Meyer
Ron Hauge
Nancy Cartwright
Yeardley Smith
Bob Anderson
Episode chronology
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"Realty Bites"
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"All Singing, All Dancing"
The Simpsons (season 9)
List of The Simpsons episodes

"Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" is the tenth episode of The Simpsons ' ninth season. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on December 21, 1997. [3] Bart accidentally ruins Christmas for the Simpson family by burning down the tree and all their presents.

<i>The Simpsons</i> American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening

The Simpsons is an American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series is a satirical depiction of working-class life, epitomized by the Simpson family, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. The show is set in the fictional town of Springfield and parodies American culture and society, television, and the human condition.

<i>The Simpsons</i> (season 9) Episode list for season of animated series

The Simpsons' ninth season originally aired on the Fox network between September 1997 and May 1998, beginning on Sunday, September 21, 1997, with "The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson". With Mike Scully as showrunner for the ninth production season, the aired season contained three episodes which were hold-over episodes from season eight, which Bill Oakley and Josh Weinstein ran. It also contained two episodes which were run by David Mirkin, and another two hold-over episodes which were run by Al Jean and Mike Reiss.

Fox Broadcasting Company American television network

The Fox Broadcasting Company is an American free-to-air television network that is a flagship property of the Fox Corporation. The network is headquartered at 1211 Avenue of the Americas in New York City, with additional offices at the Fox Broadcasting Center and at the Fox Television Center in Los Angeles.

Contents

It was written by Ron Hauge, directed by Bob Anderson, and guest starred Alex Trebek as himself. [2] Hauge was inspired to write the episode after learning of an orphanage that had been ripped off. The episode was selected, among other Christmas themed episodes of the series, on a 2005 Christmas special boxed set on DVD. The authors of the book I Can't Believe It's a Bigger and Better Updated Unofficial Simpsons Guide criticized the episode as a rehash of older themes, but it was also described as one of The Simpsons' more memorable episodes in a review of the 2005 DVD boxed set release.

Ron Hauge is an American television writer and executive producer. Early in his career, Hauge was a contributor to National Lampoon. He then wrote for Seinfeld, In Living Color, The Ren & Stimpy Show, Rocko's Modern Life, The Mouse and the Monster, and a short lived reincarnation of The Carol Burnett Show. In 1994, an episode of Ren and Stimpy that he co-wrote was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program.

Bob Anderson is an American animation director on The Simpsons. He also contributed additional sequence direction on The Simpsons Movie.

Alex Trebek 20th and 21st-century Canadian television personality

George Alexander Trebek is a Canadian-American television personality. He has been the host of the syndicated game show Jeopardy! since it was revived in 1984, and has also hosted a number of other game shows, including The Wizard of Odds, Double Dare, High Rollers, Battlestars, Classic Concentration, and To Tell the Truth. Trebek is contracted to host Jeopardy! until 2022. Trebek has also made appearances in numerous television series, in which he usually played himself. A native of Canada, he became a naturalized American citizen in 1998.

Plot

Homer and Marge go Christmas shopping at a Try-N-Save megastore, where frenzied shoppers are snatching the holiday season's most popular toys. Homer, posing as a store cashier, buys toys that customers tried to buy from him.

Homer Simpson fictional character from The Simpsons franchise

Homer Jay Simpson is a fictional character and the main protagonist of the American animated sitcom The Simpsons. He is voiced by Dan Castellaneta and first appeared on television, along with the rest of his family, in The Tracey Ullman Show short "Good Night" on April 19, 1987. Homer was created and designed by cartoonist Matt Groening while he was waiting in the lobby of James L. Brooks' office. Groening had been called to pitch a series of shorts based on his comic strip Life in Hell but instead decided to create a new set of characters. He named the character after his father, Homer Groening. After appearing for three seasons on The Tracey Ullman Show, the Simpson family got their own series on Fox that debuted December 17, 1989.

Marjorie Jacqueline "Marge" Simpson is a fictional character in the American animated sitcom The Simpsons and part of the eponymous family. She is voiced by Julie Kavner and first appeared on television in The Tracey Ullman Show short "Good Night" on April 19, 1987. Marge was created and designed by cartoonist Matt Groening while he was waiting in the lobby of James L. Brooks' office. Groening had been called to pitch a series of shorts based on Life in Hell but instead decided to create a new set of characters. He named the character after his mother Margaret Groening. After appearing on The Tracey Ullman Show for three seasons, the Simpson family received their own series on Fox, which debuted December 17, 1989.

Christmas holiday originating in Christianity, usually celebrated on December 25 (in the Gregorian or Julian calendars)

Christmas is an annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, observed primarily on December 25 as a religious and cultural celebration among billions of people around the world. A feast central to the Christian liturgical year, it is preceded by the season of Advent or the Nativity Fast and initiates the season of Christmastide, which historically in the West lasts twelve days and culminates on Twelfth Night; in some traditions, Christmastide includes an octave. Christmas Day is a public holiday in many of the world's nations, is celebrated religiously by a majority of Christians, as well as culturally by many non-Christians, and forms an integral part of the holiday season centered around it.

At bedtime on Christmas Eve, the family makes last-minute preparations at home, Marge tells everyone that no one can open their presents until 7 AM the next morning and confiscates all of the alarm clocks. However, Bart drinks 12 glasses of water to wake up early and unwrap his gifts, one of which is a remote-controlled fire truck. He plays with it until it sprays water on an overloaded electrical socket, causing a fire that engulfs and melts the plastic Christmas tree and all of the presents beneath it. Bart hides the evidence beneath the snow in the front yard.

Christmas Eve Evening or entire day before Christmas Day

Christmas Eve is the evening or entire day before Christmas Day, the festival commemorating the birth of Jesus. Christmas Day is observed around the world, and Christmas Eve is widely observed as a full or partial holiday in anticipation of Christmas Day. Together, both days are considered one of the most culturally significant celebrations in Christendom and Western society.

Radio-controlled model

A radio-controlled model is a model that is steerable with the use of radio control. All types of model vehicles have had RC systems installed in them, including cars, boats, planes, and even helicopters and scale railway locomotives.

When the family comes downstairs to find the tree and presents gone, Bart makes up a story about how he caught a burglar taking off with their tree and presents. The police investigate and Kent Brockman does a human interest story on the case.

Kent Brockman fictional character from The Simpsons franchise

Kent Brockman is a fictional character in the animated television series The Simpsons. He is voiced by Harry Shearer and first appeared in the episode "Krusty Gets Busted". He is a grumpy, self-centered local Springfield news anchor.

As a result of the report, everyone in Springfield gives them a new Christmas tree and $15,000. With the donations, Homer buys a new car. Driving it home, Homer gets stuck behind The Plow King and impatiently passes it. He drives the car onto a frozen lake, forcing everyone to jump out. The ice cracks, causing the car to sink and blow up.

Mr. Plow 9th episode of the fourth season of The Simpsons

"Mr. Plow" is the ninth episode of The Simpsons' fourth season. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on November 19, 1992. In the episode, Homer buys a snow plow and starts a business plowing driveways. It is a huge success, and inspired by this, Barney Gumble starts a rival company and quickly puts Homer out of business. The episode was written by Jon Vitti and directed by Jim Reardon. The episode was well received, with some critics calling it one of the best in the show's history. In 1993, Dan Castellaneta won his second Emmy Award for "Outstanding Voice-Over Performance" for this episode. The episode was also submitted in the "Outstanding Comedy Series" category although ultimately it was not nominated.

The next morning, a guilt-ridden Bart admits the truth to his family. Though furious, they go along with the lie when Brockman and his news crew arrive to do a follow-up story. When a cameraman, with help from Santa's Little Helper, finds the tree's remains, the family is forced to explain the truth; Springfield's citizens, feeling scammed, shun them in public and mail them angry letters demanding they pay back the $15,000.

After a failed attempt by Marge to win the money on the game show Jeopardy! , the Simpsons arrive home to find everyone in Springfield gathered on their lawn and Marge thinks they have forgiven them. However, while that is the case, they steal all of their belongings, including Santa's Little Helper and Snowball ll, to cover the $15,000 debt. The family playfully fight over a tattered washcloth, the only thing they have left.

Production

Marge appears on Jeopardy! and host Alex Trebek guest stars as himself. Alex Trebek 2009.jpg
Marge appears on Jeopardy! and host Alex Trebek guest stars as himself.

Writer Ron Hauge said he got the idea for the episode one day when he was heading to work. He was listening to the radio and heard of an orphanage getting ripped off, and they were getting back more than they gave. [4] The spectators in the stands during Bart's dreams are various animators. [5]

When Krusty says "15,000 Missoulians" it is a reference to Ron Hauge having lived in Missoula, Montana. [6] When the Simpsons' car says "I'll Keell you", this is a reference to a Wiffleball bat in the writer's office that said that. [7]

Cultural references

The episode has several references to Christmas films. The title is a play on Miracle on 34th Street while the scene where everyone rallies around to support the Simpsons is reminiscent of the last scene of the classic holiday movie It's a Wonderful Life . The film is further spoofed when Homer tells Lisa to stop playing the piano which parodies a similar scene involving George Bailey. [6]

A Charlie Brown Christmas is also parodied when the senior citizens are dancing at the Springfield Retirement Castle—their dancing is based on the way the Peanuts characters dance. [5] Marge appears as a contestant on Jeopardy! with host Alex Trebek guest starring. One of the stuffed animals Chief Wiggum is carrying is Binky from Matt Groening's comic strip Life in Hell . [7]

Reception

In its original broadcast, "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" finished 23rd in ratings for the week of December 15–21, 1997, with a Nielsen rating of 9.8, equivalent to approximately 9.6 million viewing households. It was the second highest-rated show on the Fox network that week, following King of the Hill . [8]

The episode received mixed to positive reviews from critics. The authors of the book I Can't Believe It's a Bigger and Better Updated Unofficial Simpsons Guide said "A deliberately mawkish Christmas episode that is low on good jokes (although the Simpsons watching their own fire on television is a good start) and a retread of any number of episodes where Bart does wrong, feels guilty and eventually has to fess up. The only real ray of sunshine is the closing moments when the neighbours get their revenge but the Simpsons find the family spirit after all." [9]

In its review of a 2005 DVD boxed set of Christmas themed episodes of The Simpsons, The Journal described "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire", "Miracle On Evergreen Terrace", "Skinner's Sense of Snow", and "Dude, Where's My Ranch?" among memorable episodes of the series. [10]

In his review of the same DVD, Digitally Obsessed critic Joel Cunningham wrote that "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" is "a good one [...] A nice combo of humor, satire, and heartwarming holiday fuzzies". [11] Andy Dougan wrote in Evening Times that the episode is "one of the darkest, blackest Christmas cartoons ever animated". [12]

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"Treehouse of Horror III" is the fifth episode of The Simpsons' fourth season. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on October 29, 1992. In the third annual Treehouse of Horror episode, Homer buys Bart an evil talking Krusty doll, King Homer is captured by Mr. Burns, and Bart and Lisa inadvertently cause zombies to attack Springfield. The episode was written by Al Jean, Mike Reiss, Jay Kogen, Wallace Wolodarsky, Sam Simon, and Jon Vitti, and directed by Carlos Baeza.

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Simpson family family of fictional characters

The Simpson family consists of fictional characters featured in the animated television series The Simpsons. The Simpsons are a nuclear family consisting of married couple Homer and Marge and their three children Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. They live at 742 Evergreen Terrace in the fictional town of Springfield, United States, and they were created by cartoonist Matt Groening, who conceived the characters after his own family members, substituting "Bart" for his own name. The family debuted on Fox on April 19, 1987 in The Tracey Ullman Show short "Good Night" and were later spun off into their own series, which debuted on Fox in the U.S. on December 17, 1989.

"The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace" is the second episode in the tenth season of the American animated television series The Simpsons. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on September 20, 1998, and was seen in around 7.95 million households during the broadcast. In the episode, Homer, realizing his life is half over and has not accomplished anything, begins to admire Thomas Edison and decides to create inventions to follow in Edison's footsteps and make his life worthwhile.

"Homer to the Max" is the thirteenth episode of The Simpsons' tenth season. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on February 7, 1999. In the episode, Homer discovers that a new television show, Police Cops, has a hero also named Homer Simpson. He is delighted with the positive attention he receives because of his name, but when the television character is rewritten from a hero to a bumbling idiot, he is mocked and taunted, so he changes his name to "Max Power" to rid himself of the negative attention. Max gains new friends, and is forced into a protest to prevent a forest from being knocked down. In the end, he changes his name back to Homer Simpson.

"Bart the Mother" is the third episode of The Simpsons' tenth season. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on September 27, 1998. In the episode, Bart accidentally kills a mother bird with a BB gun, and decides to hatch and take care of the two eggs he found in the bird's nest.

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The Simpsons house fictional street address in Springfield of the Simpson family home

742 Evergreen Terrace is the most commonly used fictional street address in Springfield of the Simpson family home in the animated sitcom, The Simpsons and in the feature film The Simpsons Movie. In the series, the house is owned by Homer and Marge Simpson, who live with their three children Bart, Lisa and Maggie. The street name is a reference to The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, creator Matt Groening's alma mater.

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References

  1. Gimple, Scott M. (December 1, 1999). The Simpsons Forever!: A Complete Guide to Our Favorite Family ...Continued . HarperCollins. ISBN   978-0-06-098763-3.
  2. 1 2 Martyn, Warren; Wood, Adrian (2000). "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace". BBC. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
  3. "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace". The Simpsons.com. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
  4. Hauge, Ron (2006). The Simpsons The Complete Ninth Season DVD commentary for the episode "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" (DVD). 20th Century Fox.
  5. 1 2 Anderson, Bob (2006). The Simpsons The Complete Ninth Season DVD commentary for the episode "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" (DVD). 20th Century Fox.
  6. 1 2 Groening, Matt (2006). The Simpsons The Complete Ninth Season DVD commentary for the episode "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" (DVD). 20th Century Fox.
  7. 1 2 Scully, Mike (2006). The Simpsons The Complete Ninth Season DVD commentary for the episode "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace" (DVD). 20th Century Fox.
  8. Associated Press (December 25, 1997). "NBC basks in holiday spirit". Rocky Mountain News. p. 18D.
  9. Martyn, Warren; Adrian Wood (2000). I Can't Believe It's a Bigger and Better Updated Unofficial Simpsons Guide. Virgin Books. MiracleonEvergreenTerrace (section, online version).
  10. Staff (December 16, 2005). "Rent". The Journal . pp. Page 40 (The Simpsons: Christmas Double Pack).
  11. Cunningham, Joel (2003-11-24). "Christmas with the Simpsons". Digitally Obsessed. Retrieved 2011-11-05.
  12. Dougan, Andy (November 12, 2005). "andy dougan's DVDs of the week". Evening Times . pp. Page 20 (Christmas with The Simpsons Double Pack).