Season Analysis: It’s a post-post-post-Simpsons world, and the show’s best moments sneak in when nobody is paying attention.

“The Book Job”

Parodies of heist movies (as well as heist movies themselves) have been done plenty of times, satires of the publishing industry – not so much.  That’s probably because satirizing the book world doesn’t sound like that much fun, whereas heists are all about fun.  But, fun or no, there is plenty worth targeting in the literary realm, so the idea of combining a publishing industry satire with a heist parody was an ingenious move by The Simpsons writing team.  The relentlessness of the double crosses in the last act as well as the flashback reveals that the heist had actually worked when it seemed otherwise is the sort of thing that would ruin most heist movies or heist parodies, but it worked because all these elements also served as a satirical knife cutting into the teen fantasy literary genre: the book executives want to replace the trolls in the story with more easily marketable vampires, Lisa just wants her name on a best-seller, ghost written or not, and Neil Gaiman ultimately heists his way to the best-seller list “once again.”  Also, the book titles revealed in the establishing shot at Bookaccino’s were a boon to freeze-frame inclined TV viewers (highlights included Percy Sledge and the Olympians, Are you there Glycon? It’s Me Alan Moore, Chat Roulette with the Vampire, The Girl with the ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ Tattoo, Cocktail Party Make-You-Thinks by Malcolm Gladwell, and of course, Death to Freezeframers).

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