The Simpsons always tries to remain culturally relevant, mocking all the latest social trends, fads and events. And the show's efforts seem fitting because, let's face it, many people feel it reached its peak a long time ago.
While "The D'oh-cial Network" was incredibly witty and featured some hilarious sight gags, it's social commentary might have been a little more effective a year ago. Still, it's The Simpsons: the episode delivered some extremely funny lines.
Lampooning last year's The Social Network, the installment brought in many subtle and overt references to the popular film. Pleasantly, the series didn't fall into the usual format of having both an "A" and "B" storyline. Lisa was the main focus of the episode, being put on trial for the destruction caused by her social network, "SpringFace." Her defense for the heinous crime of creating such a wickedly addictive website was simply that it was much easier to friend many people online than a few face-to-face.
Lisa, as the Mark Zuckerberg of Springfield, has been exposed to social rejection many (many) times over the course of the show and has the ingenuity to create such complex website. But unlike Zuckerberg (in the film at least), Lisa doesn't trample on her existing pals on her way to the top, nor resist taking down her controversial website. Plus, she's not trying to get back at an ex.
This episode's best gags came from the easily recognizable behavior of the SpringFace-addicted townspeople. Kids at recess were more interested in checking each others' statuses than playing on the monkey bars, and churchgoers bowed their heads in reverence of the popular social network. Naturally, it's Homer that caused widespread destruction when he tried to update his status while driving, leading to my favorite scene in the episode: Hans Moleman flying through the air yelling, "Dislike! Dislike!"
A close second in hilarity was the final scene of the Winkelvii twins losing to Patty and Selma at the London Olympics. Arnie Hammer reprised his role as both Cameron and Tyler, and their joint whining, coupled with a passionate make out scene, made this scene a fitting closer to the half hour.
Other than creating a spot-on parody of The Social Network, the episode also continued its mockery of Apple Mapple products and consumer schemes. You only need to watch Homer's exchange with a Mapple salesperson to see what's so irritating about these exployees. But their popularity can't be denied as practically every Springfieldian has a Mapple phone.
Also hilariously mocked this week:
- Although I'm not sure how many of us even recall the failed search engine AskJeeves, the reference was amusingly employed as a wounded Jeeves exited the court and climbed into a handsome cab.
- Failed business like Circuit City, Mervyn's, and a Blockbuster got a brief "In Memoriam" scene as their rewards/credit cards were tossed ceremoniously into the garbage.
What were your favorite sight gags and jokes?