The latest episode of Fox’s indefatigable The Simpsons, “Luca$,” may be something of a critical clunker, but forget the goofy plot about Lisa dating a competitive eater-in-training, or Bart covering up a B-list character’s illicit activities. You’ll want to watch this video for the unexpected hat-tip to one of the most (unexpectedly) popular games ever made.
No, I don’t get all the Minecraft references either — I’ve only dabbled with the game. But I’d bet dollars to Lard Lad donuts my brother’s seven-year-old son would get all of them (and probably be able to offer scholarly annotations in the bargain). He spent most of our last get-together asking me nuanced gameplay questions. I pretended to understand, nodding in the right places, but I’m pretty sure he figured me out.
On the other hand, I’m not sure how clever the couch gag is here. Is Minecraft‘s most visible contribution its blocky look? That seems to be the only conceit here: “Hey! Look! The Simpsons as LEGOs!” (Which, of course, is already a thing.) And Moe showing up as a creeper, because of course he would.
Here’s mister Minecraft himself, Markus “Notch” Persson, reacting to the spot:
And on how surreal it still feels when this sort of thing happens: