If you're anything like us, you spent the last month binging on Krusty Burgers, washing them down with Duff Beer, and watching hours and hours of The Simpsons until your eyes bled. Turns out, watching classic episodes for the 100th time somehow makes them even funnier. There's also a plethora of great sports-themed episodes from the long-running series that managed to get better with time, too. (Oh, that Harlem Globetrotters bit is pure gold.) In honor of FXX's Every Simpsons Ever marathon, we here at Scout.com picked the best and absolute essential sports moments from The Simpsons. Mmm, Simpsons and sports nostalgia.
Best All-Around Sports Episode: "Homer at the Bat"
This isn't just the best sports-themed episode of The Simpsons, its one of the show's all-time best episodes, period. When Mr. Burns brings in ringers for the Springfield Power Plant's softball team to win a bet (including Darryl Strawberry, Steve Sax, Don Mattingly, Jose Canseco, Roger Clemens, Wade Boggs, Ozzie Smith, Mike Scioscia, and Ken Griffey, Jr.), Homer and his beloved "Wonder Bat" are forced to warm the bench. That is, until, a series of crazy events prevent eight of the pro baseball players from playing in the big game. The episode, which also has one of the show's greatest original songs ("We're Talking Softball") also gave us the best taunt that echoed through baseball stadiums the early 90's: "Darrrryyyyyyyl, Darrryyyyyyyl." (Season 3, Episode 17.)
Best Cheer: "Lisa on Ice"
"Lisa on Ice" was a great episode about sports rivalries, particularly ones between siblings, but it also gave us the best declaration of a love for sports, courtesy of Homer. It works in literally every sports situation imaginable. (Season 6, Episode 8.)
Best Mascot: "Dancin' Homer"
Sorry, but we'll take Dancin' Homer and his delightful moves to the tune of "Baby Elephant Walk" over the Capitol City Goofball any day. (Season 2, Episode 5.)
Best Sports Movie: "A Star is Burns"
Hans Moleman's "Man Getting Hit With Football" works on so many levels. (Season 6, Episode 18.)
Best Team Name: "Team Homer"
The Bowl-a-Rama has been the setting for a lot of important moments on The Simpsons, including Homer's bowling team, Pin Pals, which included Moe, Apu, Otto, and eventually Mr. Burns. If you ever join a bowling team called Pin Pals, you better go ahead and name your ball "Homer." (Season 7, Episode 12.)
Best Sports Video Game We Wish We Could Actually Own (Kind Of): "Marge Be Not Proud"
Who the hell would steal "Bonestorm" when you could have "Lee Carvallo's Putting Challenge" instead? You have selected "No." (Season 7, Episode 11.)
Best Use of the Gym: "King of the Hill"
Ohhh, a guym. Homer is good at training (see also: the great boxing episode "The Homer They Fall"), he's just not especially great at staying in shape for long afterwards. (Season 9, Episode 23.)
Best Athlete Cameo: "Brother's Little Helper"
The Simpsons has had a plethora of professional athletes lend their voices to the show (Joe Namath, Cristiano Ronaldo, Yao Ming, and Tony Hawk, to name just a few) but Mark McGwire's cameo, and Bart's no-so-crackpot theory about Major League Baseball spying on all of us, holds up the best. (Season 11, Episode 2.)
Best Jab, Namely at the Denver Broncos: "You Only Live Twice"
After his former boss/super villain Hank Scorpio gives him the Denver Broncos as a parting gift, Homer — a lifelong Dallas Cowboys fan — explains to Marge why this isn't a good thing. This clip was in heavy rotation on Twitter during the disastrous 2014 Super Bowl. (Season 8, Episode 2.)
Second Best Jab, Namely at the Denver Broncos: "Lisa the Greek"
"Today's game between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots is too close to call. But if you're one of those compulsive types that just has to bet…uh….I don't know, Denver." (Season 3, Episode 14.)