128th-Final, Round 6: Itchy & Scratchy Land vs. Bart Sells His Soul

128th-final, round 6: 2F01 vs. 3F02.

Itchy & Scratchy Land vs. Bart Sells His Soul

2F01: “Itchy & Scratchy Land” (Season 6 / October 2, 1994)
Written by John Swartzwelder. Directed by Wes Archer
Showrunner: David Mirkin


3F02: “Bart Sells His Soul” (Season 7 / October 8, 1995)
Written by Greg Daniels. Directed by Wes Archer
Showrunners: Bill Oakley & Josh Weinstein

Both episodes belong in the Simpsons pantheon, but I can only choose one right now, and I’m going with “Itchy & Scratchy Land.”

If I had to come up with a reason I’d argue that 2F01 works better as a whole, while “Bart Sells His Soul,” with the B-plot about Moe’s family restaurant, feels more like two separate stories stitched together. Which is not not a bad thing, at all, but these two episodes are of such a high quality that directly pitting them against each other means coming up with even the tiniest “flaws,” as it were.

So long, 3F02. We’ll always have I. Ron Butterfly.

The winner: 2F01, ” Itchy & Scratchy Land.”


Round 11: HOMЯ vs. Itchy & Scratchy Land

Round 11: BABF22 vs. 2F01.

BABF22: “HOMЯ” (Season 12 / January 7, 2001)
Written by Al Jean
Directed by Mike B. Anderson
Showrunner: Mike Scully

Animation festival

Hey, it’s “The Iron Giant”!

Aw geez. While writing this episode, the staff of “The Simpsons” noticed that they’ve had a crayon stuck up their brains for a while, which caused them to write dumb jokes, a lot of Angry Homer, and generally forget everything that made the show great. They remove the crayon and write some nice observational jokes and a sweet connection between Homer and Lisa, but in the end they decide that keeping up that kind of quality would be too much work, so they just cram the crayon back in. THE END.

2F01: “Itchy & Scratchy Land” (Season 6 / October 2, 1994)
Written by John Swartzwelder
Directed by Wes Archer
Showrunner: David Mirkin

Homer Simpson, killer of robots.

“With a dry, cool wit like that…”

I don’t want to use words like “all-time favorite” here (this whole thing is, after all, designed to help me find just that), but, wow, this episode is just about perfect. Great joke after great joke, and even almost twenty years later this is one of the most quoted episodes among me and my friends. “Who are you, the narrator?” (Dan in top-form.)

  • This must have been a tour de force for the animators, but it payed off. Love the family’s vacation clothes, too.
  • The kids are acting like kids, which is great.
  • One thing missing from an otherwise flawless episode: Alex Rocco.

The clear winner: 2F01: “Itchy & Scratchy Land.”