Better Off Ned
| Better Off Ned
| Comic Story information
After Ned has another psychotic breakdown, he takes a vacation and goes on a cruise. Rod and Todd stay with the Simpson family. On the boat Ned becomes good friends with a woman called Tracy but when the boat sinks it is assumed that he and Tracy is dead and Rod and Todd's distant relatives are their new step-parents.
The story starts when Ned finally loses his temper with Homer for "borrowing" another leaf blower of his. When Marge sees him chasing her husband with a chainsaw, she invites him inside and offers a vacation on a Cloud Nine cruise ship. While there, he becomes friendly with a woman called Tracy while Homer and Marge take custody of Rod and Todd. But then a whale chased after by The Sea Captain sinks the boat that Ned is on and leaves him alone with Tracy in the middle of the ocean. However, the whale comes back and brings them ashore on a desert island. Meanwhile, Channel 6 News reports that they are dead, and Homer breaks the news to Rod and Todd in an insensitive fashion. Just then, a man called Stu and his wife Matilda, who claims to be blood relations of the Flanders, come in and bring the children to live with them, much to the delight of Homer. Back on the island, Tracy is trying to get romantic with a reluctant Ned, who instead builds shelters for them to live. When she makes another attempt to convince him of her love that evening, he refuses and runs onto another part of the island. Back in Springfield, Matilda and Stu's house has become a wreck with partying neighbours, loud music and supplies of Duff beer, while they force Rod and Todd to wash their car. Marge asks Homer to get them to turn the music down, which he accepts, however in the end he stays and sings along with the rest of them. While Ned builds a church made out of wood, Lisa gets the lowdown on Rod and Todd's new guardians. As it turns out, Matilda has a rap sheet and has only small relations to the Flanders family - she was once married to Ned's second cousin Abner. Meanwhile, a film crew, including film star Rainier Wolfcastle, land on the island that Ned and Tracy are on. While Tracy is hatching a plan to make Ned feel guilty by writing a goodbye note and disappearing into the jungle, assuming that he will come to rescue her. However, the first person who sees her is actually an alien. Ned hears her scream and comes to save her, knocking the head off the alien, which is revealed to actually be an actor in a costume. Rainier comes in the scene and spots Tracy, who he is not too happy to see. Ned is surprised to hear that the two are married, but Rainier reveals that he has a new wife called Citronella Marpoza. When she and Tracy start fighting, the film is changed to accommodate the action as a new third act. Back in Springfield, Matilda is told (by Bart using a voice adulterizer) over the phone and she may have won a hundred million dollars, but that she would have to go to Capitol City and bring all her ticket stubs with her, before end of business that day. She and Stu run off, which leaves Rod and Todd alone just as Ned comes back, and becomes their father again.