|"All's Fair in Oven War"
All's Fair in Oven War is the second episode of Season 16. It first aired on November 14, 2004 and was written by Matt Selman and directed by Mark Kirkland. James Caan and Thomas Pynchon guest star.
Homer buys Marge a new kitchen, and Marge likes cooking in the new kitchen so much she attends the Ovenfresh Bakeoff.
Marge and Homer attend an open house when the house next door is put up for sale. Marge falls in love with the large extensive kitchen. Back at home Marge asks Homer for a new kitchen. Homer agrees and attempts the renovation himself.
While demolishing the kitchen, Homer unearths his old collection of Playdude magazines. He innocently tells Marge he kept them only for the articles, and she responds by cutting out all the nudes from the magazines. Now that they are useless, Homer throws them away; but they are discovered by Bart and Milhouse. They read the articles and are greatly inspired. Using these 70s-era magazines as a model, Bart decides to renovate the Treehouse.
After Homer's remodeling makes the kitchen useless, Marge hires a contractor to complete the job. The dishes that come out of Marge's new kitchen get rave reviews and, on Ned's suggestion, she decides to enter the Ovenfresh Bakeoff with her Dessert Dogs, cakes shaped like hot dogs.
At the bakeoff, Marge encounters stiff and ruthless competition. Some of the chefs mock her, and sabotage her cooking. Her Dessert Dogs almost ruined by the end of the time limit, she barely manages to make them presentable and get them to the room where the entries have to be stored. Still fuming about the behavior of the other chefs, she stoops to their level and resorts to cheating to get even, by spiking the other entries with Maggie's ear medicine, much to Lisa's dismay.
Meanwhile, Chief Wiggum and other concerned parents talk with Homer about Bart's spreading the Playdude philosophy to the other children. Homer has a talk with Bart about the true facts of life, which a horrified Bart quickly spreads to the other children, who are just as horrified. Homer solemnly says it was better to tell them now than wait until Bart was old enough to cope.
Marge's cheating gets her to the finals, and Lisa confronts her. Marge retorts saying that the other chefs deserved it for the way they treated her; Lisa urges her to do the right thing. In the finals for the bakeoff against Brandine who has made something which Marge could easily beat without cheating, Marge admits to her foul play and Lisa's faith in her mother is restored. Brandine wins by default and collects the prize from James Caan.
Later, the Simpsons meet Cletus, who is angry that Brandine has left him for Caan; but he swears he'll get her back. As James and Brandine drive towards a tollbooth, a bunch of hillbillies ambush the car and gun Caan down.
In its original American broadcast, "All's Fair in Oven War" garnered roughly 11.4 million viewers.
The episode received positive reviews from critics. Eric Messinger of Springfield Weekly the episode a B-, stating the Marge segment "needed a bit more fine-tuning." However, he praised the Bart segment, stating that it saved the episode, and that Bart not seeing nudity in the Playdude magazines worked well in every joke, and the segment was almost reminiscent to the season three episode "Bart the Murderer." He praised James Caan's guest appearance too, stating it "worked quite well, especially with the Godfather ending pay-off."
 Promotional images