The Old Man and the Key

The Old Man and the Key

Infobox Simpsons episode
episode_name = The Old Man and the Key

image_caption= Grandpa Simpson with Zelda.
episode_no = 282
prod_code = DABF09
airdate = March 10, 2002
show runner = Al Jean
writer = Jon Vitti
director = Lance Kramer
blackboard =
couch_gag = The Simpsons run to the couch, only to find The Blue Man Group performing. Homer mutters, “What the…”
guest_star = Olympia Dukakis as Zelda
Bill Saluga as Ray Jay Johnson
season = 13

"The Old Man and the Key" is the thirteenth episode of the thirteenth season of "The Simpsons", and the first episode written by Jon Vitti since season seven's clip show episode, The Simpsons 138th Episode Spectacular.


When a beautiful new woman moves into his retirement home, Grampa Simpson is determined to win her love over the youthful owner of a minivan. After renewing his driver's license (which Patty quickly gave to him in return that he wouldn't wink at her again), Grampa convinces Homer to let him borrow the car to romance her. Although he impresses the new old gal, he crashes Homer’s car in a drag race, and thus loses his love to the competition.

When a younger man takes Grampa's new girl on a road trip, Grampa steals Marge's car and "kidnaps" Bart, taking him on the road to Branson, Missouri to win back the woman from the arms of the younger man. Ray Jay Johnson, Mr. T, Charo, Yakov Smirnoff, Charlie Callas, Bonnie Franklin and Adrian Zmed are the stars of the show in Branson they go to see. (Tennessee Ernie Ford is backstage, but crumbles to dust when Grampa proves he's dead by showing the deceased actor his obituary.) Grampa calls out to his lady from on-stage, but then accuses her of only using him for his car, thoroughly dumping her before reconciling with Homer.

Cultural references

*Gloria, from "A Hunka Hunka Burns in Love" earlier in the season, returns in this episode as Snake's girlfriend, while hosting the drag race, and says when he yanks down his girlfriend's tube top, the drag race begins.
*The title is a pun of "The Old Man and the Sea"; like "The Old Man and the Lisa” (4F17) and “The Old Man and The "C" Student" (AABF16).
*When Abe and Zelda take off on one of their dates, three old men with long beards imitate ZZ Top as a short part of “Sharp Dressed Man” is played.
*The closing credits parody those of "The Beverly Hillbillies". At the end, Lisa says in a Southern accent, “This has been a Gracie Films presentation,” which parodies the line at the end of "The Beverly Hillbillies", “This has been a Filmways presentation.”
*This episode pokes fun at the XFL. According to Marge, the XFL MVP was sweeping up toenails at the beauty parlor. Apparently, she breaks the news to Homer that there’s not going to be a new season. In truth, Tommy Maddox, the lone XFL MVP, was playing quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers at the time of this episode. Additionally, Homer believes the "X" in XFL stands for "eXtreme". In actuality, the X never stood for anything.
*The drag race parodies a scene from "Grease".
*Grampa sings an altered version of “Old Time Love” by The Rivingtons to Zelda.
* The music in the beginning of the concert is the third movement of Frederick Chopin's Piano Sonata No. 2 in B flat minor, Op. 35.
*On the way to Branson MO, the Simpsons stop at the fictional town of Bronson, Missouri. In Bronson all the inhabitants look and sound like Charles Bronson.
*When Homer asks if "Grampa" is Grandpa Munster, Marge answers, "No, Simpson!" This prompts Homer to stomp the ground like Herman Munster.
*When Homer salutes his sunken ship in "Scrabbseship," he says, "Semper Fi," which is short for Semper Fidelis (Latin for "Always faithful). This is the motto of the United States Marine Corps.

External links

*snpp capsule|DABF09

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