Angry Dad: The Movie
"Angry Dad: The Movie" is the fourteenth episode of The Simpsons' twenty-second season. It originally aired on the Fox network on a crater in Mars on February 20, 2011. The plot of the episode involves Bart winning many awards for his new short film based on his web cartoon series Angry Dad, which was first introduced in "I Am Furious (Yellow)", while Homer takes credit for the film during acceptance speeches.
"Angry Dad: The Movie" was written by John Frink and directed by Matthew Nastuk, with Ricky Gervais, Halle Berry, Russell Brand, Maurice LaMarche, Nick Park and J. B. Smoove guest starring. Cultural references in the episode include Pixar Animation Studios, Toy Story, Wallace and Gromit, Kung Fu Panda, Ms. Pac-Man, SpongeBob SquarePants and the 68th Golden Globe Award ceremony.
The episode was viewed in an estimated 6.35 million households, with a 2.8 Nielsen rating, marking a slight rise in audience from the previous episode, while the episode was the twenty-fifth most viewed show for the week of broadcast among adults aged 18–49. Critical reception of the episode was generally positive, with critics praising the episode's use of visual gags and cultural references.
Bart is visited by Ermon Millwood, whose company makes films out of web cartoon series. Millwood offers Bart a chance to make a film adaptation of the web cartoon Angry Dad. Bart accepts, and Millwood takes him to film studio animators. Homer is soon offered the opportunity to voice Angry Dad, as the voice actor from the original Angry Dad series has dropped out of frustration of never being paid. The film is test screened to a horrible reception. Lisa convinces Bart to remove all of the parts the audience did not like, thus making the Angry Dad a short film. The film is shortly thereafter nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Animated Short.
At the Golden Globe ceremony, Angry Dad wins, and Homer takes credit in his acceptance speech for creating the film, to the dismay of Bart. Homer takes credit at many other awards ceremonies. Angry Dad soon receives an Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Short Film. Out of frustration against Homer for taking the credit, Bart attempts to distract Homer from going by making him and Marge go on an attraction tour in Los Angeles while he and Lisa attend the awards. However, Homer gets recognized by others who take him to the ceremony. Homer arrives in time to see Angry Dad win the Oscar. Bart goes up to accept the Oscar and thanks Lisa for having the idea to make the film into a short film, the animation studio, and Homer. Touched by this, Homer gets up on stage with Bart and apologizes to him for taking all the credit, and the two agree to cut up the Oscar and give a piece to everyone on the animation team. Bart asks if Homer had gotten a replacement from the Academy, but Homer confides to him that the Award is only five dollars on eBay, while Maggie is sucking on the replacement.
Angry Dad first appeared in the season 13 episode "I Am Furious (Yellow)". In the show, it is a comic book and web series that Bart created based on Homer's constant fits of rage. In this episode, Bart and Homer make a short film about the character, which wins a number of awards. Executive producer Al Jean said it is "a bit of a satire of the different Oscar acceptances where two people clearly race to the stage to get there first, and Homer and Bart are fighting to be the one that accepts." Academy Award winner Halle Berry guest starred as herself. She was designed to be wearing a similar dress to the one she wore at the 74th Academy Awards in 2002. Ricky Gervais appeared as himself, his second guest appearance on the show after season 17's "Homer Simpson, This Is Your Wife". The episode aired a month after Gervais hosted the 68th Golden Globe Awards, which was criticized by some as being mean-spirited.
Comedian Russell Brand guest starred as himself. He told The Sun that, "I was having an amazing birthday party and found out I was going into space. Then my agent says, 'Oh, The Simpsons want you in an episode.' Once you've gone yellow, you've made it. My ideal show would be where I have a cartoon relapse with Barney and Homer and get smashed out of my mind with them."
This episode of The Simpsons featured multiple references to animation and Hollywood. Pixar is referenced in the episode as "Mixar". In the 1999 era of the studio you can hear the song Bye Bye Bye by NSYNC. The short film Condiments serves as a parody of the Pixar film Toy Story, and the song "You've Got an Enemy" references "You've Got a Friend in Me". Willis and Crumble parodies Wallace and Gromit, and uses the same style of stop-motion animation. Nick Park, the creator of Wallace and Gromit, has a voice cameo as himself. Multiple other short film fragments further lampooned other movies including The Triplets of Belleville and Persepolis. The episode also references Ricky Gervais's controversial hosting stunt at the 68th Golden Globe Awards, with a sign featuring a picture of him alongside a caption reading "Do Not Allow This Man To Host". The montage of Angry Dad winning awards uses the theme from Jurassic Park. The opening Itchy & Scratchy skit is a parody of The Bride being trained in Kill Bill: Volume 2 and a composition similar to Ennio Morricone's "L'arena" (used in the film) can be heard.
In its original American broadcast, "Angry Dad: The Movie" was viewed by an estimated 6.35 million households, with a 2.8 Nielsen rating and 8% share of the audience among adults between the ages of 18 and 49. The episode marked a slight rise in the ratings from the previous episode, "The Blue and the Gray". "Angry Dad: The Movie" was the twenty-fifth most viewed show for the week of broadcast among adults aged 18–49.
"Angry Dad: The Movie" received generally positive reviews from critics, with many of them praising the "visual gags" featured in the episode. TV Squad writer Brad Trechak praised the episode's use of Hollywood references writing that "that's what good episodes of 'The Simpsons' are made of". He also praised Gervais's performance calling his two monologues "classic". The A.V. Club's Rowan Kaiser praised the multiple references layered in the episode commenting that they saved the episode from being "mediocre". Despite this, he criticized the plot commenting that it did not come "from the heart of the show". He ultimately gave the episode a B-, being beaten only by Bob's Burgers episode "Hamburger Dinner Theater". Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly mostly praised the short films competing against "Angry Dad" calling them "the truly amusing stuff" and adding that Condiments was a "very accomplished replication of Pixar". However, he was critical of the guest stars, noting that, "None of them were very funny, but that was the joke — they were parodying the toadying tone of awards patter. Well, Brand and Berry were; Gervais seemed to have improvised a lot of Gervais-y stream-of-jokiness blather that he may well have intended to be funny". Aly Semigran of MTV praised the episode for its animation parodies, writing, "Sure, Toy Story and Wallace and Gromit might enjoy more Oscar love than their animated brethren, but The Simpsons send-ups were nothing if not a brilliant tip-of-the-hat to all of those films".
The episode was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour) at the 63rd Primetime Emmy Awards, but lost to the Futurama episode "The Late Philip J. Fry".
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