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Beyond Blunderdome

Wikisimpsons - The Simpsons Wiki
Season 11 Episode
226 "Thirty Minutes Over Tokyo"
227
"Beyond Blunderdome"
"Brother's Little Helper" 228
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"Oh, Mel, it's the most boring piece of garbage I've ever seen. And it's not easy for me to say that."
Homer Simpson discussing Mel Gibson's latest movie
"Beyond Blunderdome"
Beyond Blunderdome - Promotional art.png
Episode Information
Episode number: 227
Season number: S11 E1
Production code: AABF23
Original airdate: September 26, 1999
Chalkboard gag: "Fridays are not really 'pants optional'"
Couch gag: The Tracy Ullman drawn Simpsons are sat on the couch. The family walks in and spots them and they all run away
Guest star(s): Mel Gibson as himself
Jack Burns as Edward Christian
Showrunner(s): Mike Scully
Written by: Mike Scully
Directed by: Steven Dean Moore
DVD features


"Beyond Blunderdome" is the first episode of season 11 of The Simpsons and the two-hundred and twenty-seventh episode overall. It originally aired on September 26, 1999. The episode was written by Mike Scully and directed by Steven Dean Moore. It guest stars Mel Gibson as himself and Jack Burns as Edward Christian.

Synopsis

"Homer and Marge get to go to a preview screening of Mel Gibson's latest film, and everyone but Homer loves it. After reading his response card, Mel lands at the Simpsons house and asks him to help make the movie good."


Plot

After watching an advert for the new electric car, the Elec-Taurus, Homer decides to go and test drive the car because you get a free gift if you do. Homer takes the family to the dealership where they take the Elec-Taurus out for a drive. When they get to the pier, Lisa gets scared but Homer says that it's okay because it's an electric car. The car drives over the pier and into the water, sinking but still able to drive. Afterwards, Homer returns the car to the dealership, in much worse condition than they got it, and claims his free gift. That night, Homer and Marge realize that they never opened the envelope they were given. Homer and Marge open it to find movie tickets to a Mel Gibson test screening. Marge is excited, but Homer doesn't care at all.

Many people of Springfield turn up to see the test screening of the remake of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. The film is introduced to the crowd by Edward Christian, the assistant vice president of finance distribution at Polystar Pictures. During the film, Mel Gibson himself turns up and speaks to William Milo and Robyn Hannah, two executives for the film. Gibson tells them how he's unsure about the film, although the executives reassure him that they loved it. Towards the end of the film, Homer got bored of it, despite the rest of the audience enjoying it. After the film, Mel Gibson tries to sneak out, but is spotted by the audience who crowd him immediately. Homer tells Mel what he really thought of the movie and gave his feedback card to Edward Christian.

On the plane back to Hollywood, Mel reads through the feedback cards to find that everyone loved it, except Homer. Mel then gets the plane to go back to Springfield so he can get Homer to help improve the movie. Homer quickly accepts and the Simpsons travel to Hollywood. Whilst Homer and Mel work on the movie, the rest of the family go on a tour of Hollywood. In Mel's editing office, Homer suggests many changes to the film, which Mel shuts down because he thinks they're stupid. Homer then tells Mel that he thought the ending was the worst part of the film. With Mel agreeing that it needed more action, the two of them set to work reshooting the ending.

Mel and Homer show the executives the new ending to the film, which is a lot more violent and has Mr. Smith killing every senator and even the President of the United States. The executives are shocked at the film and question why Mr. Smith killed everybody. Christian then decides that the movie shouldn't be released and goes to burn the film reel. Mel steals the reel from him and he and Homer run off with the film. The executives give chase as Homer and Mel steal a studio cart and drive off, crashing the cart outside of Polystar Pictures. As the executives catch up to them, Homer and Mel enter the Hollywood Auto Museum where they find the rest of the Simpson family. They steal The Road Warrior Car from Mad Max and drive off, with the executives chasing them down in their car.

During the chase, Mel throws the dummy of himself from the Road Warrior Car and onto the executives' car. This causes them to panic and stop, thinking that they killed Mel Gibson. After realizing it was just a dummy, they continue the chase. Meanwhile, Homer has decided that he has had enough of running away and he and Mel stop to moon the executives. As the executives' car closes in, Mel jumps out of the way but Homer gets hit by the car. After this incident, Homer and Mel are allowed to release the new film to another test screening. However, everyone hates the film. As Mel and Homer drive off in a limousine, Homer starts giving Mel more film ideas for their next venture together before Mel kicks Homer out of the limousine.

Production

The Elec-Taurus idea came from when Kevin Nealon stopped by the Fox Lot with his electric car. Mike Scully met Mel Gibson at a fund raiser where he wrote some jokes for him and Daniel Stern, who were hosting the event. Gibson told Scully that he was a big fan of the show. Scully then asked him if he wanted to guest star in an episode. At the time, Gibson had the most dialogue of any guest star on the show. Gibson came back three separate times to record extra lines. Mel Gibson also recorded his lines with the rest of the cast, which didn't often happen. The movie executives were named after Mel Gibson's wife at the time, and his children.[1] Gibson was married to Robyn Moore and had children called Hannah (b. 1980), Edward (b. 1982), Christian (b. 1982), William (b. 1985) and Milo (b. 1990).

Character designer Joe Wack designed Mel Gibson's character on the show. The scene of the movie being sped up was very complex as they had to animate it like they shoot it, so they had a lot of extra poses in the scene.[2] Tom Gammill came up with the idea to make the alternate end to Mr. Smith Goes to Washington violent[1] and it was a challenge to have Mr. Smith use the things in the Senate as weapons.[2] There was an alternate ending to the episode where Apu's brother wanted to buy the movie because American action films are a big hit overseas.[1]

Reception

As of July 2021, the episode has a 7.3 rating on IMDb.[3]

References


The Saga of Carl - title screen.png Wikisimpsons has a collection of images related to "Beyond Blunderdome".
Season 11 Episodes
Beyond Blunderdome Brother's Little Helper Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner? Treehouse of Horror X E-I-E-I-(Annoyed Grunt) Hello Gutter, Hello Fadder Eight Misbehavin' Take My Wife, Sleaze Grift of the Magi Little Big Mom Faith Off The Mansion Family Saddlesore Galactica Alone Again, Natura-Diddily Missionary: Impossible Pygmoelian Bart to the Future Days of Wine and D'oh'ses Kill the Alligator and Run Last Tap Dance in Springfield It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Marge Behind the Laughter