The Revelation of Maude Flanders

The Revelation of Maude Flanders

What I took away from FFX's Every Simpsons Ever marathon wasn't quite what I expected.

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Yeah, it's pretty common for even very unpleasant people (like Maude) to get glorified upon death. For some reason, it's taboo to "speak ill of the dead" (unless they're the grand scale of evil...Hitler, Stalin, etc.)

Eh... you know, Bob. To each his/her own, but I thought the later Simpsons episodes, like just past Season 11, just felt so dry to me. There are some gems, I myself liked "The Book Job", but seasons 1-9 had a lot of heart. Genuine heart that made the Simpsons humans instead of walking punchlines.

Then again, I am that one guy who likes "The Principal and the Pauper" so... what do I know?

As for Maude, she always the religious fundie, considering her family. It's kind of amazing how it's changed how Ned is received. At first, he seemed to be the guy to envy, since he always outdid Homer in the early seasons. But, after losing both Maude and Edna, he's seen in a completely different light.

I always thought of Maude and Flanders being the two sides of religious fundamentalism that the showrunners wanted to make fun of: Ned was a pushover so determined to live up to his ideals of nonviolence that he barely had a spine, while Maude was the wrath and judgement of thosewho know how people should be living their lives: The worst interpretations of the New and Old Testaments, respectively.

Funnily enough, I think it was Lisa who was the first person on the show to have a really spiritual side, unlike the Flanders and Lovejoys who were set up as hollow caricatures for the writers to mock.

I'm surprised he didn't reference Gwen Stacy in this piece since he had a Big Picture exploring the same kind of idea of a character of primarily "posthumous relevance" in a long running story.

Avaholic03:
Yeah, it's pretty common for even very unpleasant people (like Maude) to get glorified upon death. For some reason, it's taboo to "speak ill of the dead" (unless they're the grand scale of evil...Hitler, Stalin, etc.)

Daria has a fantastic episode about this and how it seems the moment someone dies, people have to put all forms of criticism about that person in a cupboard even if he was a gigantic douche. ...gotta rewatch Daria.

You really only just noticed this now, Bob? It was pretty obvious from the early seasons onward that Maude is supposed to be mean-spirited.

I grew up watching the SAME few seasons of the simpons over and over gain as a kid (the only ones the network had I imagine) so older simpsons is more fresh in my mind

but yeah, I guess maude is like another Lovejoy....a busybody

Razhem:
[quote="Avaholic03" post="6.859506.21337596"]
Daria has a fantastic episode about this and how it seems the moment someone dies, people have to put all forms of criticism about that person in a cupboard even if he was a gigantic douche. ...gotta rewatch Daria.

Daria's a good one, I watched it as a kid so watching it as an adult its just as good if not "better" because I get whats going on

the episode that surprised me the most (watching after getting the whole thing on DVD) was a Movie length TV one that involved Jane questioning possible bisexuality, they don't go very far into it and theres no real resolution but it surprised the crap out of me, I didn't think they'd ever go there

"In Marge in Chains, she's all too eager Helen Lovejoy (the more unambiguously-catty of the show's female foils) in spreading gossip about Marge's accidental shoplifting arrest."
This sentence is impossible for me to understand. What's it supposed to say?

Avaholic03:
Yeah, it's pretty common for even very unpleasant people (like Maude) to get glorified upon death. For some reason, it's taboo to "speak ill of the dead" (unless they're the grand scale of evil...Hitler, Stalin, etc.)

Yeah, I actually thought that was the point of the "Saint Maude" stuff - that she was a fairly awful person, but her death (and Ned's devastation over it) forces everyone to pretend she was a better person (if only for Ned's sake).

I was kind of hoping the newbie reviews of Doctor Who would become a regular feature, since I really liked last week's.

As for this...hmm, I guess. I mean, we all know that nobody ever speaks ill of the dead, but I wouldn't call Maude a horrible person. She didn't really have a personality, she was just another one of Springfield's ignorant masses; at the very least she seemed like a loving wife and mother in that sickeningly sweet 50s housewife sort of way. She was the archetype Marge was created to parody, but played straight to act as a foil. Of course she was going to be part of the "think of the children" rabble; what else would she do?

It's interesting that her death happened at around the time that Ned became more of a stereotypical intolerant Christian fundie. Perhaps he was picking up the slack that Maude dropped; as Rodd and Todd said in one episode "we think you need to find a new mommy".

"Huh. I'm almost sort of looking forward to Maude getting killed off" That's a horrible thing to say. Please expand on the Big Picture and give her hell. She's got it coming.

My beef with the more modern Simpsons was that I didn't really like the visual stylistic change, especially post-Movie (I don't know it well enough to pin point a Season specifically). Not just that, but the composition - in the latter episodes that I've seen, the plot seems to revolve around the wacky antics of a plastic family unit, as opposed to the earlier episodes which were full of character development, and stories that focused on the individual.

I can also see where other critics are coming from when they talk about change in humour. Once upon a time, slapstick humour in The Simpsons was largely confined to Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake. The more recent episodes that I've sat through have effectively turned Homer into a walking target for these jokes. They can be funny, sure, but it's a different show now.

It's the opposite of South Park, which went from the purile first two seasons into a mature and enjoyable show in later seasons (mature in content, not in humour). South Park dropped off during season 15 or so, when they tried to lampoon every celebrity that they could. Family Guy has never held up to repeat viewings for me, American Dad wasn't palatable on first viewing for me, and The Cleveland Show was underrated. I'm too English to appreciate King of the Hill properly.

Verlander:

I can also see where other critics are coming from when they talk about change in humour. Once upon a time, slapstick humour in The Simpsons was largely confined to Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake. The more recent episodes that I've sat through have effectively turned Homer into a walking target for these jokes. They can be funny, sure, but it's a different show now.

I still think people have very selective memories on the Simpsons. My recollection of the earlier stuff was filled with lots and lots of physical slapstick humor (even the whole "Homer strangles Bart" running gag), and much of the first several seasons had loads of Homer getting physically destroyed for comedic effect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlDWsWXCen0

MovieBob:
It's always struck me a little strange that one of the most inflammatory things someone can say about modern popular culture is to suggest that The Simpsons was still airing good episodes after its tenth season. Well... it used to be the tenth season, at least -- the cutoff now tends to be whatever season the person complaining went off to college, work or whatever other activity superseded regular Sunday night TV prime-time viewership.

Thank you! So many people say that the Simpsons hasn't been good since x season when they haven't even actually seen an episode since that season. They're basically just saying, "That show is still on? Well it can't possibly be as good as when I used to watch it!" I find that the same thing also happens to lesser extent with Spongebob Squarepants.

Also, I did not know that Edna Krabapple's voice actress died, though I do remember there was a lot of publicity about Ned getting remarried.

Trishbot:

Verlander:

I can also see where other critics are coming from when they talk about change in humour. Once upon a time, slapstick humour in The Simpsons was largely confined to Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake. The more recent episodes that I've sat through have effectively turned Homer into a walking target for these jokes. They can be funny, sure, but it's a different show now.

I still think people have very selective memories on the Simpsons. My recollection of the earlier stuff was filled with lots and lots of physical slapstick humor (even the whole "Homer strangles Bart" running gag), and much of the first several seasons had loads of Homer getting physically destroyed for comedic effect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlDWsWXCen0

The thing with that clip is that Homer ends up bruised, bloody, and broken as a result of it. It makes you cringe because it's a realistic depiction, despite being a cartoon. Whereas more recently...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYNPtDbykp0

...he walks away fine like it's an episode of Looney Toons.

One of my most vivid memories of a Simpson's episode "from the past" never even occurred. I had come down with an insane fever one night and kind of passed out in a not-quite-unconscious state on my then-girlfriend's bed. She made me comfy then put on the Simpsons of which I became aware of bits.... but in my hand, built up this entirely new episode that had Wiggum chasing Mr Burns with dogs and a water hose over a hill.

When I woke up later, I was asked if I had managed to sleep and I explained that I had been kind of awake, recounting the episode. It was of course at that point when it was brought to my attention that this had never occurred.

/randomfact

Trishbot:

Verlander:

I can also see where other critics are coming from when they talk about change in humour. Once upon a time, slapstick humour in The Simpsons was largely confined to Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake. The more recent episodes that I've sat through have effectively turned Homer into a walking target for these jokes. They can be funny, sure, but it's a different show now.

I still think people have very selective memories on the Simpsons. My recollection of the earlier stuff was filled with lots and lots of physical slapstick humor (even the whole "Homer strangles Bart" running gag), and much of the first several seasons had loads of Homer getting physically destroyed for comedic effect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlDWsWXCen0

I've been rewatching all the episodes that people considered to be part of the great seasons, and compared to current stuff, it's the same, just that the topics that are used are different because of what's changed over the years. Simpsons had lots of slapstick all the time, with the first few seasons being a little less heavy. Simpsons is what it's always been, an episodic series which each episode takes something that is making fun of a person/event/company/etc. and make an episode surrounded about it. I remember watching a more current season that was basically making fun of hipsters. It's a show that makes fun of things to try to make a semblance of a point.

While I think some characters have had better changes over time, Lisa has been a bit of a problem for me. Maybe it's because I don't know kids that are like her, assuming they even exist, but it always bothered me that she has a moral objection to everything. It gets to the point that I usually don't care for episodes centered around her because it's centered around political/philosophical rants. I liked her in earlier episodes where she was more mature for a kid, but was still a kid so she didn't always have to be the walking moral machine.

As for the Flanders overall, they are more there to mock Christians to an extent. They are usually there to show their viewpoint and then get shot down by being shown to be idiots, at least the Lovejoys. I think overall, Ned has been the one that was more balanced. He may have certain opinions that are viewed wrong these days, but he was more respectable about things.

Simpsons overall doesn't really have great characters, but they use the characters well to give some nice scenes. One that is always painful to watch is the episode that Bart is for once trying to pass the test. The stuff near the end is actually painful to watch because of the struggle he's going through.

So basically Bob just posted a character piece about a woman who has beliefs contrary to his own, who has demonstrated in going out of her way to do what she feels or knows that shes doing the right thing, to him she is the villain, and hes perfectly content with her dying so that the world is rid of her for the better.

...Oh boy

Queen Michael:
"In Marge in Chains, she's all too eager Helen Lovejoy (the more unambiguously-catty of the show's female foils) in spreading gossip about Marge's accidental shoplifting arrest."
This sentence is impossible for me to understand. What's it supposed to say?

She was quick to spread the word when she discovered that Marge had robbed the Kwik-E-Mart.

Oh, I just read the sentence, I guess I filled in the gaps myself. Damn brain!

OT: Maybe it's because I religiously (pun intended?) watch the first 10 seasons over and over, but I've always found Maude to be mean spirited rather than find her to be like that in retrospect. Still, it seemed like a waste of a character to kill her off (though I know why they did).

Leonardo Huizar:
So basically Bob just posted a character piece about a woman who has beliefs contrary to his own, who has demonstrated in going out of her way to do what she feels or knows that shes doing the right thing, to him she is the villain, and hes perfectly content with her dying so that the world is rid of her for the better.

...Oh boy

Have you even seen the episodes? Maude is very much framed as a "villain" in the sense of being mean-spirited by the writers of the show, not by Moviebob. Though there is no denying that the left-leaning political tendencies of the Simpsons are probably closer to Bob's than not, your beef is still with the creators of the Simpsons for making fun of people with views contrary to their own...which they do constantly, and is actually an important part of the show. Which isn't really something to be condemned, as every show has a right to hold a political agenda and doesn't need to cater to anyone else's views.

I'm not really sure I'd call this a revelation.
Maybe its because I really haven't watched most of latter seasons, but I never liked Maude Flanders ...

I had already not watched for many years when they killed her off, and distinctly remember thinking "What's the big deal about that? She was a terrible character anyways" when I heard about it.

First, I am impressed bob didn't get into a whole "thing" about killing off Maude Flanders to add more character depth to Ned and their boys. Second, Bob left out the parts of Maude's personality that, compared to Marge, made her MORE progressive and accepting of others' differences. She wouldn't have lead the protest of Michaellangelo's David if Marge didn't get the protest-train rolling on Itchy & Scratchy, and now protesting things she doesn't understand is the closest thing Marge has to a steady job. Sure Maude helped lead the charge on the burlesque house, but she was swayed by the song-and-dance number like everyone else in the mob, but Marge wasn't (Rev. Lovejoy: "Thanks a lot, Marge, that was our only burlesque house!"). Also, as one of the "Investorettes", teaming up with other women to make oodles of money sounds rather feminist* to me, and they all voted to kick Marge out for being her usual wet-blanket self.

Wow, I am NOT making Marge sound like a positive role-model.

*Speaking as a white heterosexual human male, I have only the most basic understanding of feminism, that it's about women's freedom of choice in their lives and equality with men under the law.

Fat_Hippo:

Leonardo Huizar:
So basically Bob just posted a character piece about a woman who has beliefs contrary to his own, who has demonstrated in going out of her way to do what she feels or knows that shes doing the right thing, to him she is the villain, and hes perfectly content with her dying so that the world is rid of her for the better.

...Oh boy

Have you even seen the episodes? Maude is very much framed as a "villain" in the sense of being mean-spirited by the writers of the show, not by Moviebob. Though there is no denying that the left-leaning political tendencies of the Simpsons are probably closer to Bob's than not, your beef is still with the creators of the Simpsons for making fun of people with views contrary to their own...which they do constantly, and is actually an important part of the show. Which isn't really something to be condemned, as every show has a right to hold a political agenda and doesn't need to cater to anyone else's views.

And shes still a caricature of people who are like that. Personally i dont lean like that either but being cool with someone dying like that just because "their views arent like my own".

I didnt shed a tear for the founder of the West Baptist Church dying, but I didnt take joy in the idea either.

I also summarized what I said considering the recent actions of the "SJWs Vs MRAs" online fiasco and where Bob himself was criticizing [justifiable] said scumbags who were a part of that whole toxicity. Maude may not be real but Sara Palin, Michelle Bachman, & the GOP Moms still are.

Fat_Hippo:

Leonardo Huizar:
So basically Bob just posted a character piece about a woman who has beliefs contrary to his own, who has demonstrated in going out of her way to do what she feels or knows that shes doing the right thing, to him she is the villain, and hes perfectly content with her dying so that the world is rid of her for the better.

...Oh boy

Have you even seen the episodes? Maude is very much framed as a "villain" in the sense of being mean-spirited by the writers of the show, not by Moviebob. Though there is no denying that the left-leaning political tendencies of the Simpsons are probably closer to Bob's than not, your beef is still with the creators of the Simpsons for making fun of people with views contrary to their own...which they do constantly, and is actually an important part of the show. Which isn't really something to be condemned, as every show has a right to hold a political agenda and doesn't need to cater to anyone else's views.

And shes still a caricature of people who are like that. Personally i dont lean like that either but being cool with someone dying like that just because "their views arent like my own".

I didnt shed a tear for the founder of the West Baptist Church dying, but I didnt take joy in the idea either.

I also summarized what I said considering the recent actions of the "SJWs Vs MRAs" online fiasco and where Bob himself was criticizing [justifiable] said scumbags who were a part of that whole toxicity. Maude may not be real but Sara Palin, Michelle Bachman, & the GOP Moms still are.

I know Bob has repeatedly defended the later Simpsons seasons, but I just don't see where he's coming from. I'm sure there are good episodes even in the latest season, but I've tried watching them often using a fairly wide sample set of episodes randomly airing on TV and they inevitably seem to range from mediocre to awful. By contrast, when an older episode comes on I almost always enjoy it.

So we should be surprised the caricature of a christian conservative housewife acts like a caricature? I'm not seeing what's noteworthy

the only thing I remember about her is that at one point she wore a tight fitting dress and had a nice rack. To be honest I didn't even remember her name. Also that she's dead.

skylog:

Trishbot:

Verlander:

I can also see where other critics are coming from when they talk about change in humour. Once upon a time, slapstick humour in The Simpsons was largely confined to Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake. The more recent episodes that I've sat through have effectively turned Homer into a walking target for these jokes. They can be funny, sure, but it's a different show now.

I still think people have very selective memories on the Simpsons. My recollection of the earlier stuff was filled with lots and lots of physical slapstick humor (even the whole "Homer strangles Bart" running gag), and much of the first several seasons had loads of Homer getting physically destroyed for comedic effect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlDWsWXCen0

The thing with that clip is that Homer ends up bruised, bloody, and broken as a result of it. It makes you cringe because it's a realistic depiction, despite being a cartoon. Whereas more recently...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYNPtDbykp0

...he walks away fine like it's an episode of Looney Toons.

The ambulance crashing into a tree and homer falling off of a cliff is less like Looney Toons?

Dickdatduck:

skylog:

Trishbot:

I still think people have very selective memories on the Simpsons. My recollection of the earlier stuff was filled with lots and lots of physical slapstick humor (even the whole "Homer strangles Bart" running gag), and much of the first several seasons had loads of Homer getting physically destroyed for comedic effect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlDWsWXCen0

The thing with that clip is that Homer ends up bruised, bloody, and broken as a result of it. It makes you cringe because it's a realistic depiction, despite being a cartoon. Whereas more recently...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYNPtDbykp0

...he walks away fine like it's an episode of Looney Toons.

The ambulance crashing into a tree and homer falling off of a cliff is less like Looney Toons?

Well, he's covered in bandages and has to be carried away in a stretcher, so there's some semblance of reality there. Though I do see your point.

Leonardo Huizar:

Fat_Hippo:

Leonardo Huizar:
So basically Bob just posted a character piece about a woman who has beliefs contrary to his own, who has demonstrated in going out of her way to do what she feels or knows that shes doing the right thing, to him she is the villain, and hes perfectly content with her dying so that the world is rid of her for the better.

...Oh boy

Have you even seen the episodes? Maude is very much framed as a "villain" in the sense of being mean-spirited by the writers of the show, not by Moviebob. Though there is no denying that the left-leaning political tendencies of the Simpsons are probably closer to Bob's than not, your beef is still with the creators of the Simpsons for making fun of people with views contrary to their own...which they do constantly, and is actually an important part of the show. Which isn't really something to be condemned, as every show has a right to hold a political agenda and doesn't need to cater to anyone else's views.

And shes still a caricature of people who are like that. Personally i dont lean like that either but being cool with someone dying like that just because "their views arent like my own".

I didnt shed a tear for the founder of the West Baptist Church dying, but I didnt take joy in the idea either.

I also summarized what I said considering the recent actions of the "SJWs Vs MRAs" online fiasco and where Bob himself was criticizing [justifiable] said scumbags who were a part of that whole toxicity. Maude may not be real but Sara Palin, Michelle Bachman, & the GOP Moms still are.

I hate to just jump in here, but I feel like you are characterizing his reaction a bit more intensely then I think may be appropriate. I mean admittedly when Bob even writes the word women these days, there is a bit of the requisite I roll and following "ok i know where this is going..." that comes along with it, but this wasn't really that, nor did it seem like a particularly celebration of her death either that I feel like you're claiming it is. I think it's really easy to see this going there because Bob makes no secret of his political beliefs.

I think his reaction was more so the same kind of feeling you get when you see any villain of her type "get whats coming to them" which more often then not isn't death. I think the better way to articulate it would maybe be along the lines of "i wish someone would knock her down a peg," but since the character did die, which is something we are reminded of a lot in more recent episodes, it's easier to look at it and talk about it in those terms.

Also it's a cartoon character. Wishing for the death of a cartoon character is not as serious an offense as wishing or celebrating the death of a human being.

tl;dr
I think the core of what he was pointing out is that in death Maude was given a hero's tribute and treatment despite being quite the villain in reality.

Kameburger:

Also it's a cartoon character. Wishing for the death of a cartoon character is not as serious an offense as wishing or celebrating the death of a human being.

...DUH

What I was pointing out is even if the character is fiction, people just like her do in fact exist.

I find this funny since right before this post i read an Article on "Harry Potter & the Labor Day lesson" in the local paper. And TL;DR it was about how in the story it portrayed the indentured servants *goes to get article ...realizes its in the car* ...the house-elves were exploited and the attempts to free them throughout the series had its good and bad sides and it was good way to teach the younger readers about immiseration of others without being preachy about it. Slavery, discrimination, and exploitation of those different than you is a real thing

...Much like how kids grew up on The Simpsons, seen the scumbag morale right for the caricature they may or might not be, then feel good when they get their comeuppance because they are the bad guys. Feel great that the analog of someone you hate falls to their death... but not really... because that would be "terrible" if it actually happened.

 

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