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"New Kids on the Blecch" The Simpsons episode Episode no. 262 Prod. code CABF12[1] Orig. airdate February 25, 2001 Show runner(s) Mike Scully Written by Tim Long Directed by Steven Dean Moore Chalkboard gag "I will not buy a presidential pardon" Couch gag The couch is outside a prison wall. A siren wails and a searchlight moves as The Simpsons (dressed in striped prison jumpsuits) tunnel their way to the couch. Guest star(s) 'N Sync as themselves DVD commentary Matt Groening Mike Scully Al Jean Ian Maxtone-Graham Tim Long Matt Selman Tom Gammill & Max Pross Hank Azaria Steven Dean Moore Chris Kirkpatrick Season 12 November 1, 2000 – May 20, 2001 "Treehouse of Horror XI" "A Tale of Two Springfields" "Insane Clown Poppy" "Lisa the Tree Hugger" "Homer vs. Dignity" "The Computer Wore Menace Shoes" "The Great Money Caper" "Skinner's Sense of Snow" "HOMR" "Pokey Mom" "Worst Episode Ever" "Tennis the Menace" "Day of the Jackanapes" "New Kids on the Blecch" "Hungry, Hungry Homer" "Bye Bye Nerdie" "Simpson Safari" "Trilogy of Error" "I'm Goin' to Praiseland" "Children of a Lesser Clod" "Simpsons Tall Tales" List of all The Simpsons episodes Seasons 1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8 · 9 · 10 · 11 · 12 13 · 14 · 15 · 16 · 17 · 18 · 19 · 20 · 21 · 22 New Kids on the Blecch is the fourteenth episode from the twelfth season of The Simpsons. In the episode, a music producer selects Bart, Nelson, Milhouse and Ralph to be members of the next hit boy band, who record subliminal songs about joining the Navy. The episode was written by Tim Long and directed by Steven Dean Moore. The episode's title is a play on the boy band, New Kids on the Block. The episode has received positive reviews from critics and was watched by almost 8 million viewers. Contents 1 Plot 2 Production 3 Censorship 4 Reception 5 References 6 External links // Plot After watching Carlos Lopes in the 1984 Summer Olympics (who was the same age as Homer when he won, 38) on TV, Homer participates in the Springfield marathon to prove Marge that he is fit. In the end though, Bart comes out as a surprise winner, by entering from a side alley near the end, wearing a stereotypical Italian costume as a disguise. But while receiving the trophy, a bird rips his fake mustache, causing an angry mob to chase after him. Cornered, he accepts a ride from a stranger offer to escape. The stranger introduces himself as L.T. Smash. Smash offers Bart a career as a member of a boy band known as "The Party Posse". Bart accepts, and becomes Party Posse's 4th member, joining Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum and Milhouse Van Houten. The Party Posse quickly ascend to stardom, albeit using complex voice enhancers built by NASA. The band releases a single titled "Drop Da Bomb", which contains the suspicious lyric, "Yvan eht Nioj". Lisa's growing suspicion around The Party Posse eventually results in her discovering the line is a subliminal recruiting message to join the Navy, as '"Yvan eht Nioj" is "Join the Navy" written backwards. Lisa also discovers that L.T. Smash is, in reality, Lieutenant L.T. Smash ("Lt." being the abbreviation for the Navy rank of Lieutenant). He says he is working to recruit people for the Navy. Lisa points out her discoveries to Homer and Marge, but they dismiss her accusations as jealousy of Bart. The events come to a head when The Party Posse perform at a concert on an aircraft carrier, which only increases Lisa's suspicion towards the band. During the first song (which also contains subliminal messages), Smash learns from his superior officer that Mad Magazine's next issue will lampoon The Party Posse, calling them 'The Potty Posse', and thus the band will no longer have any recruiting power. Smash's superior officer terminates "Project Boy Band" by shutting off the band's voice enhancer, exposing the group's mediocre singing voices. Smash becomes increasingly aggravated about his superior officer's actions, and threatens to send the carrier out to sea. When Smash completes his threat, a terrified audience leaves the carrier. Smash sails the ship to New York City in an attempt to destroy Mad Magazine Headquarters. Despite the attempts of boy band 'N Sync to stop Smash, he destroys the Mad Headquarters with the ship's missiles, but Smash's actions appear to only reinvigorate the Mad workers. After Smash's criminal actions, he is arrested and the potential of the fraudulent Party Posse remains unfulfilled. The episode ends with 'N Sync talking about the Navy, saying that they're out there every day protecting us from Godzilla, pirates and jellyfish. Lance Bass then reveals that the band has signed JC Chasez up for the Navy. Two navy MP's drag the surprised singer off kicking and screaming. Production The episode was written by Tim Long and directed by Steven Dean Moore. Mike Scully was angry that they had not pitched enough story ideas, so he pitched this episode, along with "Trilogy of Error." During the pitch session, he suggested that *NSYNC guest star on one of the pitched episodes.[2] The decision to add a government conspiracy came late, an idea which was pitched by George Meyer.[3] At the table read for the episode, the cast ad-libbed the lyrics and music. 'NSYNC instantly said yes to being asked to guest star, although Justin Timberlake had to record his lines separate from the rest of the band due to a death in the family..[4] During the recording session the staff brought their kids and Tom Hanks, who was filming Castaway in the same studio, wanted to meet them and came by.[3] The song that introduces *NSYNC every time they walk in is No Strings Attached.[2] Justin was reluctant to say "Word" since he swore it was something he would never say, so as a joke the editing team reused the one take where he said "Word" after nearly every line.[5] Censorship After the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001, syndicated versions of this episode cut the part where the missile from the aircraft carrier launches and decimates the MAD Magazine office building (with all of the writers coming out of the explosion okay). For a period of time the scene was only available on the season 12 DVD, however the scene once again appears in syndicated versions of the show. Reception In its original American broadcast, "New Kids on the Blecch" was viewed by 9.9134 million viewers with a 9.7 rating/15 share making it the top rated animated show of the week.[6] Colin Jacobson of DVD Movie Guide said "When it parodies boy bands, “Blecch” has its moments. Granted, it’s tough to really mock boy bands, as they always bordered on self-parody; the Party Posse tunes sound a lot like the real thing. Still, the show works pretty well until it gets to the Navy side of things. Then it just becomes dopey and lacks the moderate bite of the earlier scenes. The show also becomes unintentionally eerie when it features an attack on New York".[7] Judge Mac McEntire said the best moment of the episode was the irate choreographer.[8] References ^ http://www.thesimpsons.com/episode_guide/1214.htm ^ a b Long, Tim. (2009). The Simpsons The Complete Twelfth Season DVD commentary for the episode "New Kids on the Blecch". [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.  ^ a b Scully, Mike. (2009). The Simpsons The Complete Twelfth Season DVD commentary for the episode "New Kids on the Blecch". [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.  ^ Kirkpatrick, Chris. (2009). The Simpsons The Complete Twelfth Season DVD commentary for the episode "New Kids on the Blecch". [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.  ^ Selman, Matt. (2009). The Simpsons The Complete Twelfth Season DVD commentary for the episode "New Kids on the Blecch". [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.  ^ http://www.awn.com/news/television/us-primetime-tv-ratings-week-february-19-25-2001 ^ http://www.dvdmg.com/simpsonsseasontwelve.shtml ^ http://www.dvdverdict.com/reviews/simpsons12.php External links Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: "New Kids On The Blecch" The Simpsons portal "New Kids on the Blecch" episode capsule at The Simpsons Archive "New Kids on the Blecch" at the Internet Movie Database Party Posse Lyrics MAD Magazine appearances in The Simpsons