Episode 109: Air Jaws: Great White Hope

The Overthinkers tackle the future and its many apocalypses.

Matthew Wrather hosts with Peter Fenzel and Mark Lee to overthink Lisa Simpson’s wedding and other future dates in popular culture, arriving at a typology of apocalypses and inventing one of their own: the SHARKPOCALYPSE! (August 29, 2014. Mark your calendars.)

Bonus points to anyone who mashes up Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn Khan with footage of Justin Bieber. Or is that already a thing?


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20 Comments on “Episode 109: Air Jaws: Great White Hope”

  1. Chris #

    There was indeed an episode about gay marriage called “There’s Something About Marrying” I believe. In said episode, Homer becomes ordained to perform marriages for money and also in that episode Patty, Marge’s sister, comes out as a lesbian. In the end, Lisa says “Well, that’s the end of Dad’s marriage business” and Bart says “Why?” in a sly nod at the fact it would never be mentioned again. However, Patty remains a lesbian.

    Also, Reese Witherspoon played Rainier Wolfcastle’s daughter whom Bart (and Milhouse) fall for.


  2. Chris #


    Since you were discussing 2012 the movie, and thus sort of the idea of 2012, I figure it was worthwhile to point out that isn’t actually the apocalypse in Mayan mythology. It’s actually a point of rebirth and renewal with out any end of the world implications.

    Of course, I say this as somebody with a limited knowledge of ancient Mayan mythology. Additionally, I have a limited knowledge of neutrinos, but enough to say that one way they identify their existence and presence is by creating pools of ultra purified water. In this form, neutrinos will occasionally bond with a water molecule and turn green.

    Lastly, I remember the “Summer of the Shark” mostly because I remember the excellent Daily Show piece that went along with it. It involved Stephen Colbert doing a faux fear piece where he investigated the “Summer of the Shark.” He was then told more people are killed each year by falling coconuts, which let him to proclaim it the “Summer of the Coconut.” Later, when told that more people die from falling down the stairs than from falling coconuts, it became the “Summer of Stairs.” There were some others, of course, but those are the only ones I remember. The unquestioned highlight, however, was the way he asked a person “Is this the summer of the coco-nut?” Good times.


  3. Redem #

    I’d like to highlight certain fact about the Simpsons future timeline

    In the itchy and scratchy movie we see that Bart his Chief Justice

    In lisa Wedding he casualy mention that he’s studying Law (along with being afiliated to the demoliton business)

    Now in Bart to the Future, lisa is the president

    Could it be that eventually Bart got his law degree and was name Chief Justice by Lisa?


  4. Redem #

    WWWIII suppose to have taken place in 2050 in star trek and first contact in 2063

    Speaking of apocalypse I think the serie the nostradamus effect is a very interesting one mainly for how much it is an exercise in pseudo-intellecutalism, you can pretty much take any episode and crush all the half-truth without trouble


  5. Candido De Leon #

    It’s “The Wrath of KHAN”, like Genghis KHAN. Remember? KHAN Noonien Singh? It’s not KAHN, like Madeline Kahn.


    • fenzel #

      I really wish it were possible that Madeline Kahn got her name because she was the mightiest warlord among all the other Madelines.


      • inmate #

        Don’t we all, Fenel – don’t we all.


  6. cat #

    Sharks and bible humor…great episode.


  7. Alexander Bevier #

    Fenzel: I’m almost believe that I’m the only person listening to the podcast who has played the games you talk about.

    Crystalis (which is a very good game, but probably didn’t age well) was remade in 2000 for Game Boy Color. Sense the NES version had the end of the world happening three years before that, the prologue’s date was changed to “the end day”.

    In regards to the Simpsons, I was thinking about the way time works in cartoon universes. I believe you guys touched on the subject back with the Simpsons started its 20th season, but I wondered if any of the Simpsons characters had cell phones the way we do in modern American culture.

    This thought also came to me while reading the final Scott Pilgrim comic book. The six books span roughly a years worth of time and the first comic came out in 2003. In the final issue, however, Scott Pilgrim spends most of the first chapter playing a PSP-GO (an overpriced device from 2009).

    That’s all I have to say at the moment. I have an eight page essay on Midsummer Night’s Dream to write.


  8. Matthew Belinkie OTI Staff #

    Oh Pete, once again you’ve made me write in praise of The Postman.

    The movie does not, as you imply, take place in a future where the United States has been forgotten. It’s been less than 10 years since civilization collapsed, and the survivors have no fonder wish than to see their country rise from the dead. That’s why Costner’s character disguises himself as a mailman. People treat him like the President, because they want to believe there really is a United States out there somewhere. At first, the deception is just kind of painful to watch. But then (of course) the rumor that the government is delivering mail again spreads like wildfire, and changes everything.

    There are two different ways to enjoy this film:

    1. There’s a legitimately good, if botched, story in there. The novel it is based on was nominated for a Hugo Award. The screenwriters are responsible for movies like Munich, The Insider, L.A. Confidential, Forest Gump, and Mystic River. So there are lots of good parts. But…

    2. When this movie gets cheesy, it gets REALLY cheesy. Exhibit A:
    Not convinced?
    And you know how you know that your lead actor is out of control? When he insists on not only saving the United States, but singing an end credits duet:



    • cat #

      2) Exhibit A: Is there some reason he has to ride by on the horse and grab the letter…and can’t dismount and less dramatically take the letter and put it in his pack. And am I missing the cold weather element or is he wearing too many layers?
      Exhibit B: Wow…
      End credits duet: Is it bad that I don’t entirely hate it?


    • Timothy J Swann #

      I love it too! It’s the key inspiration of an old saying of mine – “Post- makes everything better. Post-Rock. Post-Metal. Post-Irony. Post-Modernism… Postman.”
      Because it’s a great little joke in the title – he’s a post-man in a post-apocalypse. Or a post-post-apocalypse, because the apocalypse has adversely affected the mail. Still, Costner is often under-rated – The Postman and Field of Dreams are excellent


    • Timothy J Swann #

      Also – this http://www.pbfcomics.com/?cid=PBF202-Post_Apocalyptic.jpg comic sums up the state of post today if it were in The Postman. And the Road is interesting (and perhaps detrivialises things) by having no exact date or specificity of event, but it does have a time: “The clocks stopped at 1:17. A long shear of light and then a series of low concussions.”


  9. Hazbaz #

    Wrather, your pronounciation of StJohn as “sinjon” was correct.
    Quick test: how do you pronounce Featherstonehaugh?

    Is the SHARKPOCALYPSE 2014 going to involve flying sharks? because that is a genuine fear of mine.


    • Matthew Wrather OTI Staff #

      Oh, I know that one — it’s “Fanshaw”, isn’t it?

      The first time I went to London, being a clueless Yank, I pronounced “Leicester” as “Lie-chest-er.” And that isn’t even a hard one.


  10. acm #

    I think your shark line needs to use “shoal” in place of “sole”…


    • Matthew Wrather OTI Staff #

      Jokes like this make me want to implement a Digg-style “like” button for comments. +1 for bad pun.


  11. Mike #

    Re: Apocalypses
    Another interesting video game apocalypse is the nuclear war referenced in the Fallout series of RPGs (Oct 23rd, 2077). The first one is released in 1997, and combines the fear of a nuclear apocalypse (primarily a mid 20th century concept) and the modern idea of a resource crisis.


  12. Gab #

    On techie geniuses in pop culture: Warehouse 13 has a number of techie geniuses with little to no explanation of how they attained their skill, every now and then it being a guest, but two are main, recurring characters. One seems to be presented as a protige/natural genius with anything remotely scientific, and the other I think is supposed to have their skill attributed to their occupation as Secret Service/Warehouse agent and the training therein. I mention it because the “government conspiracy” thing gets kind of old, along with the natural brilliance spin, and the show does both. (Note: I enjoy the show, it’s a total geekgasm every episode and makes lots of references to geeky pop culture, such as the assumption viewers would understand the implications of being thought of as a “red shirt” by a superior.)

    About progress meaning destruction: Hence the idea of the Noble Savage, Fenzel. On the one hand, Whites are far superior to their Little Brown Brothers because they can cultivate land and produce goods so much more efficiently and in such higher quantities; but at the same time, they have lost something in their souls because of the disconnect they have created between themselves and the world as well as from each other. Whites may understand more, but in doing so, they have lose their innocence and their happiness has a tainted quality to it.

    I remember when Shark Week was a 24-7 sharkfest on Discovery Channel, whereas nowadays it’s just a few hours every night. Sad.

    Veggie Tales is adorable.

    Just promise me the sharks will swim backwards. Please, please…


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