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"The Seven-Beer Snitch"
The Simpsons episode
Homer watching Boobarella as a prison snitch.
Episode no. 349
Prod. code GABF08
Orig. airdate April 3, 2005
Written by Bill Odenkirk
Directed by Matthew Nastuk
Chalkboard None
Couch gag The Simpsons sit down on the couch. A roasting spit pierces through the couch and the floor below pulls back to reveal a fiery pit. The Simpsons are then spun around over the heat. Marge’s hair is soon on fire.
Guest star(s) Frank Gehry as himself, Charles Napier as Officer Krackney and Joe Mantegna as Fat Tony

"The Seven-Beer Snitch" is the fourteenth episode of The Simpsons' sixteenth season, first aired on April 3, 2005 in the US.


Main plot

The Simpsons go to Shelbyville to see a musical. The musical paints Shelbyvillians as smart, sophisticated people and the people of Springfield as hicks and morons. After the play, a furious Lisa declares that Springfield is not nearly as fitting of the Shelbyville stereotype as suggested, and an equally angered Marge goes to Springfield's Cultural Advisory Board to brainstorm a plan to make Springfield more sophisticated. During a free word association, Marge gets the idea to create a concert hall and hire Frank Gehry to build it. Gehry refuses at first, but is soon inspired after he crumples Marge's letter and hurls it to the ground. The $30 million project is eventually finished, but opening night proves to be a bust when everyone in Springfield leaves after hearing the first five bars of Beethoven's Fifth. Not even the symphony sticks around after Marge tells them about the next performance: an atonal piece by Phillip Glass.

At the town meeting the next day, Mr. Burns swoops in with an idea of his own: take over the space and turn it into a state prison. Homer applies for a job as a guard, but is rejected after Otto switches his urine sample with Homer's and Mr. Burns mistakes Otto's sample for Homer's. To make more money off the prison, Mr. Burns forces Chief Wiggum to reinstate old and forgotten laws in order to fill his prison with convicts. Homer becomes one of those convicts after getting caught kicking a can five times down the street (which, according to an old law, is considered illegal transportation of litter).

Homer is sent to work in the prison kitchen—and becomes a prison snitch after unwittingly alerting the guards of Snake's escape attempt. Soon, Homer is rewarded with food, special treatment, and a new plasma TV, while the other prisoners try to find out who keeps ratting out their secret plans (which is made easy after Homer admits to Marge that he's being paid to snitch in the visitation room). The other prisoners get wind of this, and stage a plan to get back at Homer. In the prison library, Snake tells Homer about an upcoming breakout, which Homer informs to one of the guards. While all the guards wait outside for the breakout, the prisoners attack Homer. Using the key to the concert hall given to her as head of the Springfield Cultural Activities Board, Marge finds Homer in the prison kitchen with the other prisoners close on his tail. They take refuge in the gas chamber where Marge scolds Homer about the lives he ruined with his tattling. Before the prisoners can attack Homer and Marge, the guards come in with tear gas and riot gear. As they are released, Homer uses his snitching for good by telling Governor Mary Bailey (last seen on "Bart vs. Lisa vs. The Third Grade") about the prison's deplorable conditions and food. Eventually, Homer is released and the governor sentences the other prisoners to serving their time on a floating garbage barge where they will bare-knuckle fight each other to the death. Marge is glad that Homer is out of prison, and Homer escapes to Moe's, where he finds an obese Snowball II (see "Subplot") and tells him not to breathe a word about Homer going to Moe's.


Meanwhile, Bart and Lisa find out that Snowball II has been gaining weight. Initially in denial, Lisa soon decides to follow her and discovers she has been eating food from another family's house. The new family has adopted her, named her "Smokey", and taught her tricks. Smokey likes her new family and Bart goes in to find out why, but instead the family fills up Bart with good food and teaches him the same trick as Smokey.

Postscript scene

During the end credits, Homer runs into the concert hall, claiming the building is a death trap. Bart tells Homer that the entire scene is a dream conjured up by Homer's mind after he fell asleep watching The Towering Inferno, at which point Homer asks Bart how he knows the name of his prophetic vision.

Production notes

  • According to Neilsen ratings, 7.3 million people tuned in, making this season 16's least-watched episode.
  • Frank Gehry is the first (and so far only) architect to do voicework for The Simpsons.

Cultural references

  • The title is a reference to The Seven Year Itch.
  • Carl says he thought it was the soundtrack to Beethoven (film series).
  • Otto's pee has Yellow Submarine.
  • Santa's Little Helper is seen flying in an airplane like Snoopy.[1]
  • Next to the 'PRISON GUARDS WANTED' sign, there is an other sign that reads 'Must know Microsoft Powerpoint sadism'


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