Santa's Little Helper, come home!
Written by Ron Hauge
Directed by Dominic Polcino
Also starring: Pamela Hayden, Tress MacNeille, Frank Welker
Premise: When Bart applies for, and receives, a Money Bank credit card, he goes on a spending spree which includes buying a new, highly well-bred dog, Laddie the Collie. But what of poor Santa's Little Helper? He is given away, until Bart's conscience pricks him.
Features: Mr Burns, Smithers, Moe, Patty, Selma, Kent Brockman, Chief Wiggum, Lou, Eddie, Agnes Skinner, Groundskeeper Willie, Otto, Milhouse, Sherri and Terri, Rev. Lovejoy, Quimby, Android's Dungeon Guy, Don Tony.
Couch: Grampa is asleep on the sofa, which is folded out as a bed. The others fold it back up - him still inside - and sit upon it.
- At the party in Mr Mitchell's house, the cops get stoned to Jammin', a 1977 hit for Bob Marley and the Wailers.
- Marge meanwhile boogies down to the sounds of The Kinks' You Really Got Me, coming out of her frying-pan radio some years after its original 1964 release.
- Amongst the mail to arrive at 742 Evergreen Terrace are the following helpful pamphlets: Gas Your Termites; Freeze Your Termites; Zap Your Termites; Save the Termites.
- On the form he returns, Bart uses Homer's Social Security number (123- 456789 - Homer's birthday is 13 July by the way) and claims he is a Butt Doctor by profession.
- Using Santa's Little Helper's name, the credit card comes addressed to Santos L. Halper.
- Once he's rich, Bart's spending spree at the Android's Dungeon includes issues of Zebra Girl, Zillionaire and Zoidzilla.
- He's also after The Radioactive Man Collection trade paperback.
- Mr Mitchell lives at 57 Mt. Auburn Street.
Homage: Lassie Come Home (Fred M. Wilcox, 1943) and every other tedious family Lassie movie and TV spin-off ever since.
Look out for: Santa's Little Helper's attempts to get the mail, Lisa on her pills, and Bart's dream of Santa's Little Helper's fate on the high seas. We also like the visit to Springfield Park, where dogs meet to sniff each other and bark. Laddie the dog, by the way, can herd sheep, use a flushing lavatory, water the flowers, and, do CPR. He can also sniff out pot.
Notes: A sweet episode, although similar in nature to Dog of Death in tone, as Bart tries to get his old dog back from its new life. The jokes at the blind man's expense are, of course, thoroughly offensive and simply wonderful.