| "A Milhouse Divided"
| Episode Information
"A Milhouse Divided" is the sixth episode of season 8 of The Simpsons and the one-hundred and fifty-ninth episode overall. It originally aired on December 1, 1996. The episode was written by Steve Tompkins and directed by Steven Dean Moore.
- "Homer questions his own marriage when, at the latest Simpsons party, Kirk and Luann Van Houten announce their divorce."
Marge decides to throw a dinner party to escape from the doldrums of everyday life at the Simpson house. She invites the Flanders, the Lovejoys, the Hibberts and the Van Houtens. The parents enjoy dinner except for the Van Houtens who nitpick at each other all night as Milhouse plays upstairs with Bart and the other kids. Kirk and Luann get more quarrelsome as the party progresses and finally, despite Marge trying to divert the party away from the fighting pair, the two get into a fight and Luann demands a divorce.
Kirk moves out of the Van Houten house and despite his drab new surroundings, he keeps a cheery attitude toward it all, until he is fired from his job at the cracker factory. Meanwhile, Luann quickly readjusts to singles life and starts a new relationship with Chase, an American Gladiator. Kirk also tries to have a new relationship, but is unsuccessful. While at Moe's, Kirk mentions that he never saw the divorce coming and Homer begins to fear that his and Marge's marriage might be next.
Homer enlists the aid of Lisa to help him figure out how to save his marriage. He recalls his wedding reception, which was nothing more than him and Marge at a truck stop, which Marge found disappointing because she had been hoping that a group of their friends would jump out and yell surprise. Homer tries to perform selfless gestures for Marge, such as making "soothing" ocean noises to lull her to sleep, but Marge acts indifferent.
Deciding that their marriage is finished, Homer secretly files for a divorce from Marge. As Marge returns home later that night, Homer surprises her by hiding all their friends in the living room and declares that he wants to be remarried, this time with a perfect wedding. The two are remarried and, inspired by Homer and Marge, Kirk decides to try to get back together with Luann by singing a song he wrote. This fails when Luann laughs it off and the humiliated Kirk is escorted out of the Simpsons house by Chase.