Coming to Homerica
"Coming to Homerica" is the twenty-first episode and season finale of the twentieth season of The Simpsons. It aired on the Fox network in the United States on May 17, 2009. Its name is a parody of the 1988 film Coming to America. The storyline is a pick on illegal immigration to the United States, complete with self-appointed vigilantes and building a fence to prevent it. Tying in with the episode's subject of Norwegian-descended settlers, its first US broadcast coincided with the Norwegian Constitution Day.
Krusty is informed that the Krusty Burger is the unhealthiest fast food in the world (somehow even the Double Krusty Burger is healthier), so he decides that his namesake restaurant should serve the "Mother Nature Burger," which is entirely vegetarian. All of the townsfolk like the new burgers (mostly Apu, who expressed his delight of a fast-food store finally taking the belief of vegetarianism to light and says that now no one can tell he's Hindu), but soon the entire town has food poisoning. The illness is traced to tainted barley, which was grown in the neighboring town of Ogdenville. The ensuing boycott destroys the local barley industry and the residents of Ogdenville, who are descended from Norwegian settlers and portrayed as overly stereotypical, are forced to abandon their town (to Norwegian romantic composer Edvard Griegs mournful "Aase's Death," followed by a phrase from the Finlandia Hymn by his Finnish counterpart Jean Sibelius).
The displaced Ogdenvillians migrate to Springfield, whose residents are initially hospitable and hire them as day laborers. Homer hires several Ogdenvillians to fix his roof, Marge hires a nanny named Inga to care for Bart, Lisa and Maggie, and Selma finds love with Thorbjørn, a brawny blond who also seems to enjoy taunting Homer. After being pressured by some Ogdenvillian kids, Bart shows off to them on his skateboard successfully — until he hits a bus and dislocates his right arm. Marge and Homer rush Bart to the hospital and are furious when they have to wait for 6 hours, due to many Ogdenvillians being injured while working for Springfieldians. Marge and Homer take Bart home where Marge personally fixes Bart's arm. Homer goes to Moe's Tavern, only to discover that Moe is now serving "Aquavit" and the bar is full of Ogdenvillians. Homer demands a mug of Aquavit and, unaware of its strong alcohol content, is instantly intoxicated and subsequently loses his job at the nuclear power plant when he arrives at work drunk.
Mayor Joe Quimby calls a town meeting, where it is decided that the Springfield border should be closed to residents of Ogdenville. Chief Wiggum and fellow officer Lou are too lazy to control the border themselves, so they distribute guns and beer to a group of vigilantes, among them Homer, Lenny and Carl. After Homer asks the assembled crowd to suggest a name for themselves "that evokes America's proud history of citizens rising up to defend our way of life", Cletus suggests "The Klan" and "The Nazis" but this is eventually rejected in favor of the decidedly less offensive "The Star-Spangled Goofballs." After several failed attempts to keep Ogdenvillians out of Springfield, the vigilantes decide to build a wall. At first, Marge believes the wall contradicts the values of tolerance that she taught their children, but changes her mind when Maggie utters the Scandinavian word "ja" (meaning "yes"). The residents of Springfield hire workers from Ogdenville to assist with the construction of the wall since they cannot build it themselves. As the building progresses, the residents of both communities discover that their similarities outweigh their differences. Once the wall is complete, the residents of Springfield realize that they miss their neighbors, so the Ogdenvillians come back through a door they built in the wall and the police arrives with music to start a party for all the people there.
Robert Canning of IGN gave the episode a positive review, saying that "shaky ending aside, the story unfolded well and the episode was full of funny bits." He went on to say, "funny, smart and, well, funny, "Coming to Homerica" was a great way to end a generally positive season." Mac McEntire of TV Verdict.com gave it a mixed review, saying that "another season of The Simpsons comes to a close, with an up-and-down episode." He went on to say, "the first half of the episode is much stronger in laughs and content than the second half, especially the somewhat rushed ending.".
- "May is Massive on Fox". FoxFlash. Retrieved 2009-04-08.
- "Ratings: Coming to Homerica". SimpsonChannel.[dead link]
- The Simpsons - Episode Guide - TV.com
- Canning, Robert. "The Simpsons: "Coming to Homerica" Review". IGN. Retrieved 2009-05-19.[dead link]
- McEntire, Mac. "The Simpsons 20.21: "Coming to Homerica"". Tvverdict.com. Retrieved 2009-05-19.[dead link]