“Flaming Moe’s” first aired on November 21, 1991 and is the 10th episode of the third season of The Simpsons, 45th overall.
Moe reveals to Homer that Moe’s Tavern is doing so poorly that he will be forced to sell the bar. In a moment of weakness, Homer reveals the recipe of his secret drink, the “Flaming Homer.” He concocted it when he ran out of beer during a cringe-worthy slideshow of Patty and Selma’s beach vacation. The drink, whose secret ingredient was cough syrup, had a great taste that was accidentally enhanced by the addition of fire via Patty’s cigarette ashes. Moe loves the “Flaming Homer” so much that he steals the recipe, renames it the “Flaming Moe” and achieves nationwide fame without giving Homer any credit. Understandably, Homer is upset and hijinks ensue.
This episode marks the first time in the series that Homer and Moe’s relationship is strained. Audiences already knew that Moe was a jerk but betraying one of his best customers, long-time friend, and protagonist of the show was a new low. I won’t reveal how the episode ends in case anyone hasn’t seen it (go watch it, now!), but everyone got what was coming to them. There’s a lot of amazing pop culture references in this episode and fun with Bart’s prank phone calls that make this episode a must-watch for all fans of comedy.
I don’t know that I can pick a favorite character from The Simpsons. Each character has brought me so much joy during my life, and resonated with me in different ways at various points in my life. Obviously, the highlight in “Flaming Moe’s” is Moe Szyslak, the financially irresponsible, selfish bro with a penchant for fame. I wouldn’t be as cruel to my friends as Moe was to Homer in this episode, but, given his dire circumstances, the temptation was understandable.