The Ten-Per-Cent Solution
| "The Ten-Per-Cent Solution"
| Episode Information
"The Ten-Per-Cent Solution" is the eighth episode of season 23 of The Simpsons and the four-hundred and ninety-fourth episode overall. It originally aired on December 4, 2011. The episode was written by Deb Lacusta and Dan Castellaneta and directed by Michael Polcino. It guest stars Kevin Dillon as himself, Janeane Garofalo as herself, Jackie Mason as Hyman Krustofski and Joan Rivers as Annie Dubinsky.
- "Krusty the Clown is stuck in a rut when the television network pulls his show from the air and his talent agency drops him as a client. But when the Simpsons introduce him to seasoned agent Annie Dubinsky, they are surprised to learn that Annie was Krusty's very first agent. Despite their rocky relationship, Annie is convinced to re-sign Krusty and craft his career comeback. But when Krusty's retro comedy show reboot is deemed a critical success, Krusty must decide to stay with his agent or side with the network executives."
Lisa, Bart and Maggie are watching an episode of The Itchy & Scratchy Show entitled "The Cat's Speech". After this finishes, Krusty comes onto the screen and announces that they are watching another episode of Itchy & Scratchy, entitled "The Social Petwork". Krusty starts to complain about this then another episode airs, "Black & Blue Swan". Marge then stops them from watching TV as Maggie's eye is starting to wander. Marge then announces that they were going to visit the Museum of TV and Television as it is closing soon, causing Homer to have a panic as he doesn't know where he could find clips of old TV shows. This is then shown to be a clip on Hulu and another video shows, "Bart Pranks Putin".
The family goes to the museum where they find that they are selling old TV relics. Bart shoots a gun used in Sheriff Baby and Homer accidentally fires his gun, ripping a hole in his pants. Homer then notices a stand for The Adventures of Fatso Flanagan and watches a clip. Annie Dubinsky then comes out and Homer asks her if there is a place for him on TV.
In Channel 6 Studios, Krusty is complaining to his superiors about the amount of Itchy & Scratchy being shown. He is then fired by the executives and is then fired out of a cannon as that is what makes it legal. Krusty then goes to his agent who then drops him as a friend and as a client.
The family is then in Krusty Burger talking about the museum. They then notice Krusty in the ball pit and Lisa tries to get him help. They tell Krusty about Annie Dubinsky, not mentioning her name, and take Krusty to see her. When they see Annie, she shouts at Krusty although Krusty can't remember her. Lisa then asks her to explain it to her.
When Dubinsky started out as an agent in the mid-60s, she went to The Village Id, a comedy club, where she saw Krusty on stage. She then transforms Herschel Krustofsky into Krusty the Clown. She and Krusty entered into a relationship, staying in The Clown Plaza Hotel. Krusty then ditches her and runs away from her, leaving her to hate him and she didn't have sex with a clown for five months.
Dubinsky then decides to take Krusty back and gets him a new show, The Krusty the Clown Show Retro Reboot! The show turns out to be a huge success and Annie and Krusty get back together as a couple. After the show, HBOWTIME offers Krusty a position on their network. Krusty makes Annie his producer.
While recording for the show, Krusty is given Kevin Dillon and the rest of the cast of Entourage. Annie starts to make demands, angering the executives. Eventually, the executives ask Krusty to fire her as she is causing trouble, including chasing Squeaky-voiced teen around.
In the next show, Janeane Garofalo guest stars. Annie comes on stage, saying that no one who is funnier than Krusty can be on the show. The executives told Krusty to fire her but he refused and both he and Annie quit and went to star in a TV series, Sex Over Sixty.
Guest star Joan Rivers recorded her lines in March 2011.
"The Ten-Per-Cent Solution" was watched by approximately 9 million people in its first airing. In the demographic for adults aged 18–49, the episode received a Nielsen rating of 4.0. The high rating was the result of the episode being preceded by a popular National Football League game.
The episode has received mixed reviews from critics. Hayden Childs of The A.V. Club praised Rivers as a guest star since she was able to "employ her trademark humor within the world of The Simpsons without hijacking the plot or satire." Ology's Josh Harrison similarly praised the episode for having "some wonderful Krusty the Klown moments and some clutch guest star appearances". Harrison concluded his review by saying that though the episode "wasn't Simpsons gold, it was a great chance to focus on a secondary character and an opportunity for Joan Rivers to, um, be Joan Rivers. I imagine your assessment of the episode may be based largely on your opinion of the guest star. That said? I dug it."
Criticism came from the Parents Television Council (PTC), which named The Simpsons the "Worst TV Show of the Week" because "The Ten-Per-Cent Solution" contains "content inappropriate for the Family Hour".