Saturday, November 21, 2015

To Matt Groening and James L. Brooks: A modest proposal

It has become a truism that you can't do anything original on a sitcom because The Simpsons has already done everything. But there is one plot that The Simpsons hasn't done ... at least, not quite. Back in season 13, the show did an episode in which Homer was prescribed medicinal marijuana by Dr. Hibbert. It was a well-regarded episode, but that was 13 years ago. It's time for the show to revisit the theme, and this time, go big. The Simpsons needs to do an episode in which marijuana use becomes legal in Springfield.

After marijuana use is legalized in Springfield, Howard K. Duff, the owner of Duff Beer, decides to branch out into the production of marijuana cigarettes. He hires Otto Mann away from Springfield Elementary School to head Duff's marijuana subsidiary, Puff. Otto's detailed knowledge of marijuana cultivation, and his contacts among Springfield's drug community, make Puff an immediate success. Otto is soon a wealthy and respected business executive.

With Otto gone, Springfield Elementary needs a new bus driver. They hire Ned Flanders, whose Leftorium shop is going through a slow patch, and who needs the extra income to tide him over. Ned is soon leading his passengers in singalongs of "Michael Row the Boat Ashore" and "Amazing Grace", and Bart becomes desperate for Otto to return. Bart encourages Flanders to mount a campaign to repeal legalization. Flanders' campaign succeeds, Duff shuts down Puff, and Otto returns to being a bus driver.

Unlike the earlier medicinal marijuana episode, it probably won't be possible to avoid showing the characters actually smoking marijuana. However, since they are likely to be smoking manufactured Puff cigarettes rather than hand-rolled joints, the controversy will be minimized. And if marijuana use is ever legalized nationally in the United States, these issues can all be revisited in a future episode.

1 comment:

Blogger said...

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