Diggs (The Simpsons)

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"Diggs"
The Simpsons episode
Episode no. 542
Production code SABF08
Original air date March 9, 2014 (2014-03-09)
Showrunner(s) Al Jean
Written by Dan Greaney
Allen Glazier
Directed by Michael Polcino
Chalkboard gag A NCAA-style playoff bracket featuring Simpsons characters
Couch gag As the Simpsons rush to the couch, the lights go off. Marge leaves to fix the fuse, and when the lights go up, the characters are drawn Triplets of Belleville-style and everything has a French aesthetic to it. Bart plays with a do-it-yourself foie gras kit, Lisa plays an accordion, Marge cries out, "Maggie? Où est Maggie?" and Homer gets up and eats a snail off the TV, oblivious that Maggie is stuck between his butt cheeks. Directed by Sylvain Chomet.
Guest star(s) Daniel Radcliffe as Diggs

"Diggs" is the twelfth episode of the 25th season of the American animated sitcom The Simpsons, and the 542nd episode of the series. The episode was written by Dan Greaney and Allen Glazier and premiered on March 9, 2014, on Fox.[1] In the episode, Bart makes friends with a transfer student named Diggs, an expert in falconry who saves Bart from the wrath of the Springfield Elementary bullies – and who intends to take to the sky himself, which makes Bart worry about Diggs' sanity.

Plot[edit]

When a visiting reverend from another country pleads Springfield churchgoers for a donation to help the sick children, Bart sympathizes with a boy his own age. Bart has a difficult time asking his parents for a donation, but Homer eventually relents, lending Bart $20. However, Homer continues to pester Bart for repayment. Bart looks annoyed only because he just borrowed the money. Feeling the pressure of Homer's badgering, Bart confides in Milhouse at the playground before a costumed devil makes Bart an offer if he eats anything for the money, he will be able to get the $20. So, Bart calls the children of the school playground to help him out of this bind by offering to eat anything except money.

Soon enough, Bart receives offers to eat used chewing gum, orthodontic wax, cinnamon, St. John's wort, and a preserved frog prepared for dissection, even though Lisa warns her brother to not consume the animal. After eating the frog Bart ends up in the hospital. Bart pays his father back, but the hospital bill is $4000. The next day the schoolchildren, including Milhouse, shun Bart for eating the frog. Just when the school bullies are about to attack Bart, Diggs and his falcon Freedom save the day. Diggs is a new transfer student. He reveals to Bart the hidden Falconry Club headquarters behind the school. As Bart spends more and more time with Diggs, he learns about falconry and even conducts some mischief around town in teaching Freedom how to snatch Springfielders' belongings.

One day, however, Diggs decides to show Bart something special, and he dives from a high tree branch, resulting in his injury and emergency hospitalization. Bart questions what prompted his new friend to act as he did. Diggs explains he just wanted to fly. Bart gives Diggs a look when Diggs jokingly admits that he can't fly while wearing his cast. Bart overhears that Diggs will transfer over to a mental hospital. Bart wants to visit his new friend at the mental institution, but Homer and Marge are reluctant to allow this. Homer suggests that Bart merely resume his friendship with Milhouse.

Bart manages to take care of Freedom. Bart is approached by Jimbo, Kearney and Dolph at school, and they confront Bart regarding Diggs' illness. Initially Jimbo and Kearney are teasing Bart, but as Dolph joins in this attitude, Jimbo and Kearney change their attitude; they chide Dolph.

When Bart enters the falconry club, Diggs is there climbing through a window. Diggs claims to have gotten a day pass to participate in a falconry contest. At the falconry contest, Diggs unveils to Bart a plan to free all the falcons. Bart helps Diggs enact the plan, and the falcons fly away in a flock. Diggs thanks Bart for his friendship and rides his bike back to the mental hospital.

Reception[edit]

Dennis Perkins of The A.V. Club gave the episode a C+, saying "It’s just that it’s Bart, and Bart doesn’t fit these sorts of stories as well as, say, Lisa does—his character’s just not built for 'affecting,' at least not any more. There’s no connection made between his initial generosity toward the kid in the church story and his willingness to remain loyal to his new friend. And so 'Diggs' fades in the memory. You know, just as Diggs himself will once Bart breaks out the slingshot again next week."[2] The episode received a 1.2 rating and was watched by a total of 2.69 million people, making it the lowest-watched episode of The Simpsons ever. It was the third most watched show on Animation Domination that night—beating Bob's Burgers but losing to another episode of The Simpsons and Family Guy with 4.56 million.[3]

References[edit]