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The Simpsons - The Incredible Lightness of Being a Baby - Review: A Tale of Two Classes

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*NOTE – This review may contain spoilers.

At this point of our lives, the political landscape is negatively impacting more of us than it has in recent memory; with world leaders putting money before the livelihood of their citizens, and the stress of the world causing us to act out in ways that will selfishly affect our loves ones, this episode of our favourite family sitcom epitomises where we are today in way that only The Simpsons can.

The opening of the show sets the tone as we see a new socially distanced Springfield as the streets are empty and Bart's detention is replaced by "online school" all before revealing that they're living within the realms of Virtual Reality - if only. It's a fun yet disheartening sequence that, for a moment, takes us away from the escapism the show usually brings us.

Our first story this week takes place when Maggie bumps into her new friend - as introduced in her Disney+ exclusive short film 'Playdate with Destiny' - Hudson. The two had a cute romance in the five minute short and they get the chance to rekindle it here. Marge gets into a bit of a tiff with Hudson's mother as she feels she judges her daughter and her far too much.

Throughout the 33 years of this show's existence, we've known Maggie to be one of the show's most intelligent characters, and for the most part she shows her knowledge through her (lack of) speech. But it's really shown when she gets the chance to properly respond and communicate, which is a rarity for her. In this episode she communicates the most at two points; whenever she is with Hudson, and when Marge takes her away from Hudson. We get a striking moment of conversation between the mother-daughter duo when Marge reveals that she didn't tell her about Hudson's birthday party, and it's clear that Maggie is not only upset at missing out on her crush's event, but disappointed in her mother. This apt moment showcases what we love most about our youngest Simpson, and how affective her character can be when we see her in an actual storyline; she's distraught at missing out on something she knows she would've loved, but the betrayal of her mother after years of being by her side hits her hardest. Their relationship has been so tight-knit, and Maggie usually only shows her heart when she's around her, so this is a poignant moment for the pair.

Switching over to our other story, Homer finds himself in a pickle when Mr. Burns asks him to befriend Cletus (father of 29, no, 30, no, 31!) as he has helium that could benefit the plant. After the two become friends, another act of betrayal takes place when Homer reveals his intentions, but all is forgiven in the end as the pair become the best of friends, and even sing about it.

The timing of this story couldn't be more perfect as it exemplifies the impact of capitalism's greedy intentions and how it tries to destroy the lives of innocent, hardworking citizens. And not only that, but it forces another (not-so hardworking) citizen to betray another. Homer and Cletus are two unlikely friends that probably should have become pals a lot earlier in the series, but now was the apt time to do it. The two have spent a lot of the show facing the negative impact of the government; with Simpson constantly being tortured by billionaire Burns and Cletus being the epitome of how a billionaire would see the average American, the two have a lot in common than the show lets on. This episode highlights that, and it reminds us of why we love our leading man so much.

Homer doesn't always do the right thing, in fact, he messes up more than anyone in the show, but his heart is mostly in the right place. This episode will go into our bookmarks under "episodes that exemplify why we love Homer" as although he doesn't quite understand Burns' request, he just wants to do a good job so that he can feed his family. And on top of that, he realises how great of a man Cletus really is as he sees him try to take care of his family also.

This episode arrives at a perfect time, and gives us a great moment for all four of our main featured characters. We see them showcase why we love them, and remind us of the real people they are beyond their immediate characteristics.

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