Deceptive editing foils Homer Simpson

Deceptive editing foils Homer Simpson
Homer distorted by the media

In this Simpson’s episode (Homer Badman, season 6 episode 9), Homer Simpson has lusted after a gummy Venus de Milo candy stuck to the butt of the kid’s babysitter. She mistakes his gummy lust for sexual lust, and turns the media mob against him. Homer decides he’ll use the media to tell his side of the story, so he contacts the hard-hitting news program Rock Bottom (a parody of the then-current investigative news show Hard Copy.)

Here are the deceptive techniques used to trick Homer Simpson. These techniques are used for laughs in the cartoon, but in reality, many of these techniques are actually used by the media.

But first, watch the clip. This episode has been voted one of the best Simpsons episodes ever.

  1. He thinks others who have been interviewed have been treated very fairly. Unfortunately, the interviewee he sites as being treated fairly is the fictional creature Sasquatch.
  2. Homer assumes the media is interested in telling the truth and will give him a forum for telling his side of the story, rather than telling a sensational, marketable story. As he says with fervent belief when the show’s logo appears: "Here comes the bouncing ball of justice."
  3. During his interview, he goes on a tangent about his lust for candy, giving the producers plenty of material to manipulate.
  4. Homer doesn’t realize that the media loves to continue a story of good versus evil, and he’s already been branded the evil one.
  5. Homer has no control over how the show will portray him.
  6. The program begins with "another" sex story – a "sex farm for hookers," of course using an actual farm and farmer, and links Homer to that segment.
  7. They use slow-motion video and creepy music when they show Homer, and innocent music and pictures when they show his "victim."
  8. Since they get to title the segment they’ve created, they call it Babysitter and the Beast.
  9. In the funniest segment, Homer’s words are reedited to create completely new sentences, confessing that he likes her "can."
  10. The show splices in video of the interviewer, filmed later, when he asks Homer if his horrible behavior has any defense. That’s when the video is stopped in a freeze-frame at a particularly disgusting picture of Homer’s face. Homer says nothing. The interviewer says "…your silence will only incriminate you further." 
  11. The interviewer reacts to Homer’s freeze-frame picture "moving closer" as Homer’s face gets larger and larger and the interviewer screams in fear of Homer’s anger.
  12. A quick disclaimer is made: "Dramatization: may not have happened."
  13. As a disillusioned Homer says before the segment is even finished: "Aw, crap."
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    One thought on “Deceptive editing foils Homer Simpson

    1. Thank toy Bob. I hope you don’t mind me using these points to help me with my Preliminary English Exam based on the manipulation of the media.

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