93. When alt.tv.simpsons predicted Maggie shot Mr. Burns (June 2, 1995)
There is a great article over at Slate about the old Simpsons newsgroup, alt.tv.simpsons. I wish I was old enough to have lived in the time of Usenet Newsgroups. I got on the internet in 2000 when I was 16, and by then, newsgroups were fast approaching their downfall. I would have loved to have discussed classic episodes of Simpsons with fans the day after they aired.
In 1995, for the season finale, Mr. Burns was shot, and we were supposed to spend all Summer wondering who shot him. The newsgroup posters immediately went to work, and on June 2, 1995 a Harvard student (or the very least, someone with a Harvard email), Gary Chase posted his theory on how Maggie shot Mr. Burns:
While nothing is certain, it seems that Maggie has become the “prime suspect” of many of the posters to ATS. The following is a summary of clues/evidence/stuff….
- Burns speaks to the “attacker” as if he is talking to a child or animal. - Maggie was left alone in the car with the door open and not buckled into her car seat. - She was last seen in the car holding a large sucker. Burns had earlier discussed wanting to steal candy from a baby. - All of Burns comments to his “attacker” are consistant with the Maggie theory. Specifically: He struggles with that person over some object, most likely the sucker. Only a baby (or a dog) would allow a “struggle” since any other person would quickly over-power the notoriously weak Burns. The attacker is someone Burns knows; he knows Maggie. The attacker doesn’t speak; Maggie never speaks. Burns says, “Get your HANDS off me” thus eliminating the Santas Little Helper theory. - Burns wound only went through his shirt not his jacket, suggesting he was leaning forward, with his Jacket open, when shot. - Only Maggie (and an unidentified black male in the back:Carl maybe?) doesn’t avert her eyes when Burns says “Who will stand up to me?” - Maggie fits the MS or WS sundial “clue”.
Thats about it. Please add other clues that I have missed.
What would be really cool if it was a cry for help made in passing retrospectively when Burns plummets with his dying breath on the sundial during Who Shot Mr. Burns pt. 1.
Think about it, Burns is weakened and collapses upon the sundial, hands pointing at W and S. In his final minutes aside from sucking out the gold fillings in his teeth like he mentioned in part 2, he subconsciously was pleading out for Waylon Smithers, his steady partner. Like from the tendrils of death it was an effort to indirectly apologize through the stinginess, to show Smithers he was right after all, the reason being that out of his stubbornness he had a realization like the stoic mountain he is.
But the whole M S and W S thing iconography was explained that Burns was unaware of it.
It would be a cool idea to revisit in a future episode, though, considering the unstable fluctuating nature of Simpsons canon.
SIMPSONS MUSICAL GUESTS: Tito Puente … in “Who Shot Mr. Burns? Parts 1 & 2” (5/21/1995 and 9/17/1995)
Tito: Revenge? Of course. But why wound his body with bullets when I could set his soul afire with a slanderous mambo? Listen, if you will, to my revenge – uno, dos, tres! [his band launches into a salsa song]