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Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade

Wikisimpsons - The Simpsons Wiki
Season 14 Episode
293 "How I Spent My Strummer Vacation"
"Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade"
"Large Marge" 295
"Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade"
Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade promo.gif
Episode Information
Episode number: 294
Season number: S14 E3
Production code: DABF20
Original airdate: November 17, 2002
Chalkboard gag: "Fish do not like coffee"
Couch gag: Homer goes through future-like doors. He reaches a phone booth and falls through the fall and then lands on the couch where the rest of the family are already seated. A parody to the 60's series "Get Smart".
Guest star(s): Tony Bennett as himself (archive audio)
Showrunner: Al Jean
Written by: Tim Long
Directed by: Steven Dean Moore
DVD features

"Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade" is the third episode of season 14 of The Simpsons and the two-hundred and ninety-fourth episode overall. It originally aired on November 17, 2002. The episode was written by Tim Long and directed by Steven Dean Moore. It guest stars Tony Bennett as himself via archive audio.


"After taking an aptitude test, Bart is held back a grade, and Lisa is skipped ahead, landing them both in third grade at the same time, and in the same class. Tension develops between them, but they are forced to work together when they become lost on a school field trip."


The family is just bored with reality shows on the six major networks. Luckily, Bart has a suggestion: buy a satellite dish. They do when Homer makes money from betting on a horse named No Risk. Eventually, they buy a satellite system with over 500 channels. Homer and Bart get addicted to it, leading Bart to not study for an important achievement test that is about to occur, even as Lisa is studying. During the test, Bart begins hallucinating, showing what he's seen on TV in the school. Once the test is done, the results are in: Bart fails the test and is held back to the third grade, but Lisa also passes the test and goes up to the third grade, where they meet their new teacher. Sibling rivalry ensues.

In third grade, Bart and Lisa each have their own results. Bart is doing extremely well on tests, while Lisa has a hard time adjusting to the conditions of third grade. Their new teacher decides to clamp their desks together after Bart gets an A on a test and Lisa got an A- also because she thinks that Lisa needs Bart's help. Bart says that the test was easy and recites all of the answers to Lisa, which he had memorized from last year in third grade. Lisa proclaims that Bart cheated but the teacher didn't hear Bart's recitation and tells Lisa to stop being jealous and changes Bart's grade to an A+. They are made buddies as part of the buddy system on a field trip to Capital City. When they are there, they hear that the flag for the state Springfield is an embarrassment (it contains a Confederate flag, despite the state being from the North), and their teacher assigns for homework an assignment to design a new flag. Lisa calls Marge as she designs her flag, which says "To Fraternal Love". On the phone, she complains about and makes fun of Bart, unmindful of the fact that Bart is overhearing the conversation on another phone. A vengeful Bart then changes the flag.

The next day, Bart, Lisa and the other third-graders hand over their flag designs to the Governor. When the Governor sees Lisa's flag, she starts to cry and displays the flag which now says "Learn to Fart". This appalls Lisa, as Bart innocently admonishes her for making the Governor cry. Later, Bart again teases Lisa and they get in a fight and miss the bus heading back to Springfield. The fight brings them out of the parking lot and into the forest. As a result, the two wind up getting lost.

Back in Springfield, Principal Skinner informs Homer and Marge that Bart and Lisa are missing. He says they will spare no expense to find Lisa (but not Bart), and have already elected a Class Clown pro tem (Milhouse) in Bart's absence. They go to Capital City to find them, but Bart and Lisa are confronted by a family of hillbillies, who save them by driving them back to Capital City. Marge is ecstatic on seeing her children safe and sound. Principal Skinner, worried about the effects of placing Bart and Lisa in the same class, suggests that they return to the "status quo" - both Simpson kids go back to their proper grades. Everything is as it should be.


The episode received positive reviews from fans of the show.[1]


The Saga of Carl - title screen.png Wikisimpsons has a collection of images related to "Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade".
Season 14 Episodes
Treehouse of Horror XIII How I Spent My Strummer Vacation Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade Large Marge Helter Shelter The Great Louse Detective Special Edna The Dad Who Knew Too Little The Strong Arms of the Ma Pray Anything Barting Over I'm Spelling as Fast as I Can A Star Is Born Again Mr. Spritz Goes to Washington C.E. D'oh 'Scuse Me While I Miss the Sky Three Gays of the Condo Dude, Where's My Ranch? Old Yeller-Belly Brake My Wife, Please The Bart of War Moe Baby Blues