For purposes of this thread, let’s include anything that’s visual only, including slapstick (physical humor), humorous signs on stores, etc.
My favorite is the time Homer was fixing breakfast for Mr. Burns. He made a shish kebab of three raw eggs (still in their shells) which, IIRC, he tried to cook in the microwave. They burst into flame. He tried fixing several other hot breakfasts, all of which burst into flame. Finally, he gave up and poured cold milk on cold cereal. Which also burst into flame.
When Homer was kicked out of Moe’s bar, and a guy who looked just like Homer, but with a top hat, fancy suit, a monocle and moustache, walks in, asks for a beer, and gets his ass kicked back out to the gutter. The real Homer then walks by and remarks on how the guy is exact double.
[li]The walk-in microwave oven.[/li][li]Homer’s rear sliding across the glass roof of a church.[/li][li]The “diagram” of Jimbo Jones’ house in the “24” episode, and Ralph running on a hamster wheel.[/li][li]Homer diving out of the car as it rolls down a cliff and then rolling right back into it.[/li][li]A cannon taking the place of the toilet, and then Bart sitting on the cannon.[/li][li]Bryn Mawr and Smith kissing.[/li][li]Homer shaking his fist at the red-light camera as he eats a donut and reads Cat Fancy.[/li][/ul]
My favorites are the ones where they blatantly set up a movie or TV cliche and then invert it. I’m not sure which one I would pick as the best, but a couple of examples:
*There’s that famous sequence where Homer slowly sprays a ton of lighter fluid on to his charcoal at a barbecue. He tosses in a match… and it lights in completely normal fashion. (“Lisa the Vegetarian”)
*While trying to escape from Las Vegas, Homer and Ned grab two security guards and pull them into a closet. There’s a fight, and a moment later… the security guards emerge from the closet having beaten up Homer and Ned. (“Viva Ned Flanders”)
*Trying to sneak into the Super Bowl, Homer sees an enormous rack of costumes that will be used in the halftime show. Rather than use the costumes to disguise themselves, the men push the rack into some security guards and make a mad dash through the front entrance. (“Sunday, Cruddy Sunday”)
*The Springfield Elementary children go on a field trip to a Civil War-era fort. The tour guide says they’ve just had their cannon restored to full working condition and that the cannon is pointed directly at the leg of the lookout tower. The cannon then falls over and nothing happens… because for safety reasonsthey don’t keep it loaded. “It’s just common sense,” says the tour guide. (“The PTA Disbands”)
One of my faves is when Ned and Homer bump into each other at the cider mill and ned starts comparing apple juice and cider. You hear Homer’s brain say “Well you can stick around, but I’m out of here” followed by a ghost image of his brain leaving his body. Homer nods a bit then completely slumps over to the ground.
When Bart and Nelson are in the roles of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, and they show the 99 cent store – which is filled with grand pianos and crystal chandeliers.
When Bart and Lisa build a castle out of cardboard boxes, then they have a great battle with the UPS guys – and a dragon shows up. When it’s all over they decide to melt the boxes. And panning out, we still see the slain dragon.
Form the movie, when the dome shows up, and everyone in Moe’s Tavern runs to the church, and everyone from the church runs to Moe’s Tavern.
The Springfield gorge scene from “Bart the Daredevil.”
Homer falls into the gorge, hitting every single branch, rock, outcropping, etc., on the way down (each accompanied by a “D’oh!”), which takes a long time. Funny.
Having been strapped into a basket and airlifted out, Homer swings, pendulum-like, bonking his head on the wall of the gorge several times on his way up. Funnier.
The ambulance immediately crashes into a tree, sending Homer, now strapped to a gurney, plunging back down into the gorge. Hi-freaking-larious!
A subsequent clip episode showed this scene with some added footage following Homer all the way back down to the bottom, ending with the gurney landing on top of him. Still funny, but the original episode didn’t need it. The blackout was perfectly timed.
One of my favorites is funny because of what you don’t see. Milhouse’s parents are playing Pictionary at a party, and Kirk draws “dignity”, and gets mad when Luanne can’t guess what it is. So he says, “Fine, you draw dignity!” and she quickly draws something - but we never see it - and everyone immediately is like, “Wow, that’s it exactly!”
That’s a great one…the tiny thump really makes it for me.
I like the one where Lisa is trying to brainwash Bart and rewarding him with cupcakes, and Bart is shown reaching upwards for two cupcakes atop the refrigerator in a shot recreated from A Clockwork Orange.
I started laughing just remembering the rabbit snare. That visual was great.
There’s an episode where Marge is holding some scissors (I don’t recall why) and when asked about it, she nervously says “They’re… just what I need to gussy up these old curtains!” and starts cutting off the bottom half of the kitchen curtains. In the next scene, she’s at the table sewing her curtains back together.
Homer & Bart break all the dishes using them for skeet shooting. Marge asks about the missing dishes at the table while the family is eating spaghetti out of (among other things) drinking glasses and a muffin tray.
The “Snow Day” episode where Chief Wiggim is writing his name in the snow…it shows him from behind with his hands in front…and he says “Hey Lou can you help me shake this out?” and Lou is all “Sure thing, Chief”…and it turns out it’s his Thermos of coffee he’s pouring onto the snow.
She’s actually trying to get him to associate the cupcakes with an electric shock as part of her “Is My Brother Smarter Than A Hamster?” experiment. If I remember right, he reaches for those cupcakes but he’s too traumatized to grab them.
“El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Homer,” the one with the Guatemalan insanity peppers. She’s been cutting the references to the big chili cookoff out of the newspaper so Homer won’t go to the cookoff and get drunk.