The Real Housewives of Fat Tony

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"The Real Housewives of Fat Tony"
The Simpsons episode
Episode no. 483
Prod. code NABF12
Orig. airdate May 1, 2011
Showrunner(s) Al Jean
Written by Dick Blasucci
Directed by Lance Kramer
Couch gag The couch and the family are on the cover of a VHS video which is inside an abandoned rental store called "Million Dollar Video." The store (and everything inside it) gets demolished.
Guest star(s) Joe Mantegna

"The Real Housewives of Fat Tony" is the nineteenth episode of The Simpsons' twenty-second season. It aired on the Fox network in the United States on May 1, 2011. This episode mainly centers around Marge Simpson and one of her older sisters, Selma, who falls in love with mobster Fat Tony (Fit Tony). Selma later begins the glamourous lifestyle associated with being in the Mafia and the couple agree to marry each other. The marriage leads to tension between Marge and Selma. Fat Tony later invites Homer & Marge to his mansion in New Jersey, in hopes of mending the sisters' relationship. Meanwhile, Bart acquires an ability to trace the location of truffles, which leads Lisa to attest to her growing greed for eating truffles.

This episode was written by Dick Blasucci, and directed by Lance Kramer. The episode was met with a mixed to negative response from television critics, with much criticism going to the cultural references and the main storyline. It garnered a 2.9 rating in the 18-49 demographic. The episode featured a guest appearance from Joe Mantegna, as well as several recurring voice actors and actresses for the series.

Plot[edit]

Selma is greeted by Fat Tony at the DMV, much to her discontent. She makes several sarcastic remarks towards Tony, enraging him in the process. This prompts him to order his local mafia to abduct and kidnap her. They set her up for interrogation at an abandoned warehouse, in which she shoots out more sarcastic remarks. Fat Tony falls in love with her humor, and later grants her the chance to get liposuction. Afterwards, the couple go on a date off the coast of New Jersey, on which he proposes to Selma. She agrees to the proposal, and they end up getting married.

After the party, tension rises between Marge and Selma after the couple place Homer and his family in an undesirable location. To offer his apologies, Fat Tony later invites the Simpson family to his mansion over on the shore of New Jersey. After meeting a few relatives, the couples spend time together. While on the beach at dusk, Selma reveals to Marge that she was envious that she was not in a happy marriage, and asks for Marge's support of her marriage. Marge finds out that Fat Tony is married to another woman, so she tells Selma about this. Selma confronts Fat Tony about the claims, and he reveals to her that he initially proposed to her to be his comare. Tony's wife abruptly crashes into his yard, only to fight with Selma at the end.

Meanwhile, Bart and Lisa are walking in the forest when Bart sniffs out a truffle. After talking with Luigi about the truffles for Luigi's restaurant, Lisa then uses Bart to find more truffles. Eventually, when they cannot find truffles, Bart sniffs out one in Lisa's bedroom. Instead of selling them as planned before, Lisa has been eating them. They feel sorry for Luigi's pig, who did not get to eat any, so give it the last one that Lisa had. The pig then proves this was a bad idea by going berserk and tearing through Luigi's restaurant to eat more of them.

Production[edit]

Joe Mantegna made a guest appearance on the show, reprising his role as Fat Tony.

"The Real Housewives of Fat Tony" first aired on May 1, 2011 in the United States.[1] This episode was directed by Lance Kramer who last directed a Simpsons episode in the season twenty-one episode, "To Surveil with Love".[2] It was written by Dick Blasucci, in his first episode of the series.[3][4]

This episode featured a guest appearances from Joe Mantegna, as well as several recurring voice actors and actresses for the series. Mantegna reprised his role as Fat Tony, in his second appearance in the season as the first was in the episode "Donnie Fatso".[5] Alongside with her role as Marge, Julie Kavner provided the voices for Patty and Selma Bouvier. This is the first time that Kavner reprised her role as Patty and Selma since the season twenty-one episode, "Moe Letter Blues".[6]

Reception[edit]

“The Real Housewives of Fat Tony” mainly focused on Selma’s marriage to Fat Tony [...]. This gave the show’s writers every opportunity to make a series of tired jokes about Italian-American stereotypes. I guess I should be thankful that they didn’t waste more time poking fun of the Jersey Shore’s cast or, worse still, that they didn’t invite the cast of that obnoxious show to play themselves. The show’s writers have gotten so lazy that I didn’t even bat an eye when they busted out a joke about how all the light fixtures in Fat Tony’s mansion had tanning bulbs installed in them."

—Simon Abrams of The A.V. Club, on "The Real Housewives of Fat Tony"[7]

The episode was first broadcast on May 1, 2011, and it was viewed by 6.109 million viewers upon its original airing.[8] While this episode achieved a 2.9 rating in the 18-49 demographic, according to the Nielson ratings.[8] The episode's total viewership and ratings were significantly up from the previous episode, "The Great Simpsina", which was viewed by 4.996 million viewers upon its initial airing, and garnered a 2.3 rating in the 18-49 demographic.[9] "The Great Simpsina" was the lowest rated episode in the series' history.[9] The episode was also preempted in several regions on the west coast due to breaking news coverage of the death of Osama bin Laden.[10]

The episode was met with a mixed to negative response from television critics. Ariel Ponywether of Firefox News Ponywether's review was mixed not positive, she was quite negative about the sub-plot. She felt that it was a decent episode, noting that it was "funny, but not that much."[11] Ponywether ultimately gave the episode a 'B+' grade.[11] Eric Hochberger of TV Line gave it a 2.5 out of 5 stars, as he gave much criticism to the main plot of the episode.[12] He deemed it as a "mediocre version of Jersey Shore".[12] Hochberger also expressed discontentment for the sub-plot of the episode, stating that it "didn't tie in at all with the main storyline."[12] In his review for this episode, he harshly criticized the jokes featured in the episode. He opined: "While I'm usually a fan of the mob boss jokes that Fat Tony's appearances bring, they've pretty much been beaten to death by this show. Plus, this has been the second weak Fat Tony episode this season after the terrible "Donnie Fatso". Maybe it's time to retire this character from headlining episodes until the writers come up with a story worthy of telling."[12] Simon Abrams of The A.V. Club reacted negatively to the episode, giving it a 'C' grade.[7] He criticized the writer's capabilities of writing as in his opinion, that they are not funny.[7] However, Abrams was more positive on the subplot, saying that it was decent.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Simpsons - Episode Guide - MSN TV". MSN.com. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  2. ^ "To Surveil with Love". The Simpsons. Season 21. Episode 20. 2011-05-01. Fox.
  3. ^ "The Simpsons: Cast & Details". TV Guide. Retrieved 2011-05-07. 
  4. ^ "Dick Blasucci". TV Guide. 2011-05-01. Retrieved 2011-05-07. 
  5. ^ "Donnie Fatso". The Simpsons. Season 22. Episode 9. 2010-12-12. Fox.
  6. ^ "Moe Letter Blues". The Simpsons. Season 21. Episode 21. 2010-05-09. Fox.
  7. ^ a b c d Abrams, Simon (2011-05-01). "The Real Housewives of Fat Tony". The A.V. Club. Onion, Inc. Retrieved 2011-05-07. 
  8. ^ a b Gorman, Bill (2011-05-02). "TV Ratings Sunday: Bin Laden News Scrambles Ratings, But ABC Likely Tops The Night". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved 2011-05-03. 
  9. ^ a b Gorman, Bill (2011-04-11). "TV Ratings Sunday: ‘Cleveland Show’ Up; ‘Family Guy’ Stable; As ‘Brothers & Sisters,’ ‘Celebrity Apprentice,’ ‘Secret Millionaire,’ ‘Simpsons,’ ‘American Dad’ Fall - Ratings | TVbytheNumbers". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved 2011-04-16. 
  10. ^ Rowe, Douglas (2011-05-02). "Ratings: Bin Laden Coverage Skews Figures; Desperate Housewives Tops Viewership". TV Guide. Retrieved 2011-05-27. 
  11. ^ a b Ponywether, Ariel (2011-05-03). "Review -- The Simpsons: "The Real Housewives of Fat Tony"". Firefox. Retrieved 2011-04-16. 
  12. ^ a b c d Hochberger, Eric (2011-05-02). "The Simpsons Review: "The Real Housewives of Fat Tony"". TV fanatic (Mail.com Media). Retrieved 2011-05-07.