The Last of the Red Hat Mamas

The Last of the Red Hat Mamas is the seventh episode of the seventeenth season of The Simpsons. The episode originally aired on November 27, 2005. This episode was the second highest rated of the season with 11.5 million viewers.


The Simpson children participate in the annual Easter celebration at Mayor Quimby's mansion. When Maggie is unable to gather any Easter eggs, Homer decides to take the other children's eggs. Maggie is delighted, but Hugs Bunny (an allusion to Bugs Bunny), who is refereeing the Egg hunt, voices his immediate displeasure. Homer and Hugs get into a huge fight. Meanwhile, Marge goes on a tour of the mansion, led by Quimby's estranged wife, but things quickly go downhill when the fight spills into Quimby's office. Marge is embarrassed by Homer's childish actions, and her friends determine she is bad news and shun her.

At home, Marge tells Homer exactly how she feels, leading Homer to try to make amends by trying to find some new friends for Marge. He goes to the supermarket to find one, but fails by behaving too much like a stalker.

Where Homer fails, Marge succeeds. At a restaurant, she meets up with members of the Cheery Red Tomatoes. She quickly impresses the group's leader, Tammy, and - after participating in a few low-key meetings - is soon invited to become a member of the women's group.

However, when it comes time for the initiation, Tammy asks Marge to assist in their efforts to break into Burns' mansion to steal $1 million in Fabergé eggs. They explain they are a group that raises funds for charity, and that Burns once promised them that amount to donate to a children's hospital; however, at a press conference, the selfish millionaire announced he plans to keep the money for himself (to undergo a procedure that will extend his life by 10 minutes). Marge tells the Cheery Red Tomatoes members she cannot go ahead with the burglary, however bad of a person Burns is, but when told her membership rides on her participation, she decides to cast her morals aside and proceed with the burglary.

At home, Homer finds Marge's Tomatoes folder lying around the house and after rummaging through it, learns about the group's plans to break into Burns's safe. As he tries to get to the mansion to stop her, his reckless driving gets the attention of the police, who follow him, after leaving Officer Eddie behind to direct traffic. Meanwhile, Marge is able to sneak onto Burns's grounds through an air duct and unlock a gate; from there, the women crack open the safe and begin helping themselves to the Fabergé eggs that sit inside.

As the women are leaving, Chief Wiggum and Burns arrive at the mansion to arrest the women. Burns is disgusted by Chief Wiggum and Lou arguing over Wiggum's pants size. Homer arrives to stop Marge from doing something she'll regret, but finds himself a prime suspect in the heist. However, once everything is explained, Marge realizes she does not need the group to make friends; after all, she already has one very special friend - Homer. Marge does, however, give the group the Fabergé egg she took.

In the subplot, Lisa is seeking summer opportunities and settles on traveling to Italy. She tries to convince Principal Skinner that she speaks fluent Italian, but the principal is skeptical. Rather than putting her on the spot, he decides to test Lisa later. This gives Lisa time to hire a tutor, who turns out to be Milhouse; he learned the language from his grandmother in Tuscany, as she hated English after being left pregnant by an American G.I. after World War II. Milhouse is actually quite good at teaching Lisa, and before long, Lisa is speaking fluently and apparently forms a friendship with Milhouse. However, just as it seems that Milhouse's unrequited feelings for Lisa would be reciprocated, he is caught with a girl named Angelica.

Inter-episode references

  • The very next episode (The Italian Bob), The Simpson family goes to Italy. Lisa speaks some Italian in that episode. It is the first time the storylines of two sequential episodes are linked.
  • Luigi Risotto was apparently born in Italy, since he got a visit from the US Immigration Department in Marge vs. Singles, Seniors, Childless Couples and Teens, and Gays, but according to this episode his parents only spoke fractured English at home, which suggests that the family moved to America when he was a child.
  • In his fight against Hugs Bunny, Homer breaks a chocolate bunny rabbit identical to the one Homer put into the collection plate in "Simpsons Bible Stories"
  • This episode marks Bernice Hibbert's first speaking appearance since The Great Money Caper.
  • In this episode it is shown that Milhouse is Italian, but in Husbands and Knives, he's Greek. (tells Comic Book Guy about "γιαγιά Sophia" giving him money for Greek Orthodox Easter) and in Little Orphan Millie, Milhouse is half Danish and half Dutch. Also, his Nana refers to him as "Milhouse Mussolini Van Houten", but this may not be accepted as canon as his actual middle name, since it has never been mentioned again to date.

Differences in the Italian version

In the Italian dubbed version of this episode, the subplot focused on Lisa learning Italian history instead of the Italian language and Tammy (Lily Tomlin's character in the English dub) is voiced by Alessandra Mussolini, an Italian politician and niece of Benito Mussolini.

Cultural references

  • R.E.M.'s Everybody Hurts plays when Marge trudges dejectedly around Springfield.
  • Has-Been Celebrity Poker is being held at the "Vic Tayback Hotel". Vic Tayback is best known as Mel, owner of Mel's Diner in the sitcom Alice (and not much else since, so he's a good host for the event).
  • Homer's line, "Game over man ... game over" (when the police arrive at Burns's mansion) is taken from the movie, Aliens.
  • Eddie's animated style of traffic direction is likely a reference to Tony Lepore, the "Dancing Cop" of Providence, Rhode Island.

  • When Lisa and Milhouse go to Little Italy, Milhouse acts like Don Fanucci from the movie,The Godfather Part II . His clothes in that scene are similar, too. Homer parodied the same scene in the earlier episode, Last Exit to Springfield
  • Hugs Bunny, the referee of the Springfield Easter Celebration, is an obvious pun on the famous cartoon lagomorph Bugs Bunny. Mrs. Quimby also mimics Elmer Fudd's speech impediment in introducing Hugs. Later, Homer mentions the Road Runner, surprised to learn there is an actual bird by that name.
  • Mayor Quimby's office is styled after the White House Oval Office. Mrs. Quimby's trip around the mayor's office is vaguely reminiscent of a spoken word track on the record, The First Family, wherein Mrs. Kennedy led the paparazzi around the White House, leaving everything "just the way it is."
  • The Cheery Red Tomatoes organization is a spoof of the women's group, the Red Hat Society, focusing on fun and companionship.
  • Lisa sings new lyrics to the aria "La donna è mobile" from Verdi's opera, Rigoletto.
  • The episode title is a play on the movie, The Last of the Red Hot Mamas, about the life of the Vaudeville entertainer, Sophie Tucker.
  • During his fight with Hugs Bunny, Homer remarks, "Silly rabbit. Kicks are for ribs!" This is a play on the catchphrase for the children's breakfast cereal, Trix.
  • When Sherri and Terri discuss Rome with Lisa, one of the twins references that Rome was "Founded by twins, by the way." These twins are Romulus and Remus.

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