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October 10, 2015

The Simpsons: 24 Minutes

by Adam Finley, posted May 21st 2007 11:21AM

simpsons(S18E21) I suppose that in many respects this episode should have been the 400th one. It was fast-paced, exciting and hysterical. However, it will go down in history as merely episode 399. I'll talk more about that in my review of episode 400.

Seriously, though, how cool was this episode? I knew it was going to be a parody of 24, but I assumed the episode would contain a few clever references, a cameo by Kiefer Sutherland and Mary Lynn Rajkskub, and that's it. But no, the whole damn episode, from the opening title sequence to the end credits was inspired by the look and feel of 24. I don't want to see the Simpsons do this sort of thing all the time, but an occasional drift into parody such as this or the "Behind the Laughter" episode can be quite entertaining.

Also, it's been a long time since the Simpsons has had me on the edge of my seat, but the pacing of this episode was so perfect I found myself really getting into it. If they can create that kind of energy in one episode, I have high hopes for the feature film.

I also loved Kiefer Sutherland's voiceover in this episode, especially in the opening when he almost calls the show "24" and then corrects himself and says "the Simpsons." It's no surprise they got Sutherland to do this episode, since he's been on the show before, but without his distinct voice, this parody would have been sorely lacking.

I must also say I was happy they didn't involve Jack Bauer and Chloe too much in this episode. The main focus was on the bake sale and the stink bomb, but the occasional allusion to the actual 24 universe was a nice touch, specially in the end when Bauer actual puts all of his effort toward finding Bart for making a prank phone call to him. This, of course, results in Shelbyville being destroyed by a nuclear blast, but it's just Shelbyville, so nobody cares.

The scene where Bart beats the crap out of Nelson was also really funny, not to mention completely out of character, but for the purposes of this episode it fit perfectly. Not unlike the Halloween episodes, this one took the Simpsons out of the "real" world and into a kind of alternate reality. Like I said, an occasional detour like this can work once in awhile, and with 400 episodes in the can, you can't blame the people behind this series for wanting to stretch their legs and have now and again.

Here are a few moments that stuck out for me:

  • Skinner: I'll teach you to make a Poupon me!
  • Using Jimbo's 2nd grade drawings as a schematic for his house
  • Homer and Milhouse traveling by dumpster throughout the episode
  • Willy mentioning that he sharpened the blades on the ventilation fan (!)

No question, this one gets 7 out of 7.

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I thought it was a funny episode, despite not having seen 24, and thought that a lot of the things both here and in the South Park spoof was quite standardized, that is the things could just as well have been from Alias or just about any action movie, and the only original to 24 seems to be that it uses real time.

May 22 2007 at 3:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought this episode was great. I especially loved it when Martin turned out to be the mole. Also, I thought the animation was great like when Bart pulls out his slingshot and rolls around to kick down the door. Martin's nervous acting was hilarious as well.

May 21 2007 at 11:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Bart : Lisa, are you in a secure line?
Lisa: Yes, I am... but you are in a bluetooth headset, the most unsafe device ever invented by the man!

Just a sidenote, but do we need to keep comparing it with South Park? It's not that pleasant read it everytime, in anyone of the trio The Simpsons/Family Guy/South Park everyone saying "X did it!", "copy!" and on

May 21 2007 at 10:15 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The episode lacked any funny until the end when with relief it turned out Shelbyville had been nuked.

May 21 2007 at 8:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Even with Sutherland and Rajskub, I didn't find this nowhere near as good as South Park's. Had a couple chuckles here and there, but that was it.

May 21 2007 at 6:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

For some reason, the opening freeze frame noting that Homer is a "devoted father of two" really cracked me up.

And Bart doing the fake name gag to Jack Bauer himself is just greatness.

May 21 2007 at 4:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Maybe you have to watch/enjoy '24' to think this episode was good.

Martin, Nelson and Bart acting out of character got a pass from the reviewer, but I thought it was more distracting than anything.

I kept waiting for it to get better... it never happend.

Maybe it would have worked as a short in a Treehouse of Horror. But it certainly didn't work as a stand alone episode.

May 21 2007 at 3:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think the quality of the episode was above average. They really pulled off some nice pseudo-dolly work and all the montages with the different "cameras" must've meant additional work - "24" also being a Fox series must've upped this episode's budget.

Anyway I laughted two or three times which is nothing compared to earlier years. I think this was a better episode than most of the others in the recent years but it is nowhere near the amount of laughs a "South Park" episode will get from me. The South Park spoof of 24 was way more hilarious than the Simpsons one and I think Kiefer Sutherland and whatshername weren't used as much as they could've been - to be frank I still wonder how they actually fit into the episode - Bart uses the phone and ends up in a three way phone conference with Jack Bauer and Chloe O'Brien? I don't think so, sorry. That one was so totally forced... there must be better ways to include a guest actor into an episode than this. At least they let Kiefer do the regular "24" voiceover in the opening sequence which was great :-)

May 21 2007 at 3:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Better than most episodes of 24 this season .. and more believable.

May 21 2007 at 1:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
The Midnight Penguin

Did the Southpark episode actually have Kiefer's voice though? I'll take the Simpsons anyday over Southpark.

May 21 2007 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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