Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble"
- "Oh dear God! This man's kidneys have exploded. There's nothing left."
- ―Dr. Hibbert
| "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble""
| Episode Information
"Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble"" is the eighth episode of season 10 of The Simpsons and the two-hundred and eleventh episode overall. It originally aired on December 6, 1998. The episode was written by John Swartzwelder and directed by Mike B. Anderson.
- "On behalf of Homer's infamous ignorance, Grampa falls victim to a textbook kidney blowout. But when Homer steps up to offer a donor kidney, he quickly finds himself suffering from a much more common phenomenon: cold feet."
The Simpson family are driving to Bloodbath Gulch, a ghost town outside of Springfield. However, the car breaks down outside the Springfield Retirement Castle on Grampa's birthday, leading to the family reluctantly taking Grampa with them. When they arrive, the family goes on the tour where the tour guide tells them about the town's history. After getting bored of the tour, the family go to the Ye Olde Animatronic Saloon for drinks. Grampa then stays in the saloon whilst the rest of the family explores the town.
When the family leaves, Grampa asks to use the restroom, but Homer wouldn't let him. For the entire drive home, Grampa complains about needing to go a bathroom, even asking to go behind a tree, and asking if they can make going back to the World's Largest Toilet his birthday present. The family then goes to the hospital and they find out that Grampa's kidneys both exploded due to having to hold it in for the entire drive. Homer agrees to give Grampa one of his kidneys, not realizing the dangers behind doing so.
The family makes Homer feel special, giving him all his favorite foods and treating him like a hero. However, when Homer goes to Moe's Tavern, his friends tell him the truth behind the procedure, that it could be a deadly operation and might mean Homer can't drink alcohol as much as he used to any more. This frightens Homer, who then begins to get cold feet about the operation. In bed that night, he talks to Marge about it, who gets Homer to remember how his dad was good to him as a kid. The next day, Homer gets to the hospital and gets ready for the operation. As Dr. Hibbert was getting ready to start, he finds that Homer has fled out the open window.
Homer escapes to the town's docks and jumps aboard The Ship of Lost Souls as it was setting off, asking Captain McCallister if he could come aboard. Homer is then introduced to the Lost Souls, a group of people who sail the seven seas to forget their past lives. After each of them tells Homer their stories, Homer tells his, which horrifies the Lost Souls. The Lost Souls then throw Homer overboard, leaving him to wash up on the shore again. Homer then sees a father and son on the beach and decides to go back and give his father a kidney. After he apologizes to his family for leaving, Homer gets ready for surgery once more. However, as Dr. Hibbert was about to start, Homer fled out the window again. This time, he almost got hit by a car-carrying truck, only for a car to fall on him.
Homer wakes up in the hospital, covered in bandages. He apologizes to the family and felt bad as he thought his dad must be dead by now. Grampa then comes into the room, perfectly healthy. Homer thinks that it's a miracle until he notices a scar where his kidney used to be. Homer tries to attack Grampa as he mocks him. The family then hugs as Homer feels up Bart's kidneys.
The episode was originally pitched by George Meyer, but written by John Swartzwelder. The idea for the couch gag came from Dan Castellaneta's niece. The first part of the episode is mainly driving, with many moving backgrounds. This meant the animation scenes were really long. One of the deleted scenes for the episode includes a prostitute getting shot in the gun fight in town. The aniamtion timing had to be redone as the timing for the words the robots were saying was too perfect, so it had to be desynched. The scene when Old Curly drowned in a trough had someone taking a picture. This scene wasn't in the script but was added in by the animators.
The Fox censors had an issue with Grampa giving Homer NyQuil to help him sleep, so they had to not show the label to get it to air. Barnacle Bill's Anger Management Center was a joke originally pitched by George Meyer for a season 8 episode but never made it to the final cut. "Honeybunch" was pitched by Brian Scully, as "Honeybunch" was a term of endearment used by his father for his wife.
- Hauge, Ron (2007). Commentary for "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble"", in The Simpsons: The Complete Tenth Season.
- Scully, Mike (2007). Commentary for "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble"", in The Simpsons: The Complete Tenth Season.
- Anderson, Mike B. (2007). Commentary for "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble"", in The Simpsons: The Complete Tenth Season.
- IMDb - "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble""
- TV.com - "Homer Simpson in: "Kidney Trouble""