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"Steamed Hams" is the name often used for a memorable short from the Season 7 episode 22 Short Films About Springfield, as well as the genre of parodies, re-imaginings, and subversions of it that emerged online in the late 2010s. The title card shown in the short itself gives it the name "Skinner & the Superintendent". It features Seymour Skinner and Superintendent Gary Chalmers, and parodies the cliche "having the boss over for dinner" sitcom plot. The idea of referring to hamburgers as "steamed hams" plays a prominent role in the short.

In the late 2010s, it became popular in some online communities to alter, recreate, subvert, and parody the short in various ways. These variations have included: changing the genre or tone of the short, adding a twist, changing the characters, script, or art style, recording the short in live-action, setting it to music, and many others. A custom Hit & Run level, "An Unforgettable Luncheon", was made based on this short. A clip of this short also appeared in the “Bart's Not Dead” couch gag celebrating 30 years of The Simpsons.

Plot[]

Skinner & the Superintendent
Chalmers-ab

Principal Skinner welcomes his boss, Superintendent Chalmers, into his home for a luncheon he hopes will be a memorable one. However, after seating the Superintendent, Skinner discovers that his roast has burnt in the oven, and decides to cover his mistake by ordering fast food from the nearby Krusty Burger and passing it off as his own cooking.

As Skinner is climbing out the kitchen window, Chalmers walks in abruptly. The awkward moment is interrupted by a theme song in the style of a 1980s sitcom, complete with a title card and montage. Skinner lies, claiming he's merely stretching his calves on the windowsill as isometric exercise, and that the smoke from the burning roast is actually steam from the "steamed clams" he is preparing. Though suspicious, Chalmers is mollified and leaves the room, letting Skinner rush out the window and across the street to the Krusty Burger.

Skinner returns, emerging from the kitchen with a platter of hamburgers and fries, which Chalmers questions, as he recalls Skinner saying they were having steamed clams. Thinking quickly, Skinner responds that he actually said "steamed hams", which he claims means hamburgers in a regional dialect. Chalmers asks which region Skinner means, and he responds that the phrase hails from upstate New York. Chalmers, who grew up in Utica, has never heard the phrase before, but Skinner further specifies that it is unique to Albany, which Chalmers accepts.

The two begin eating, and Chalmers immediately notices that the burgers Skinner "prepared" are exactly like those served at Krusty Burger. Skinner cheerfully insists they are homemade "steamed hams" from an old family recipe, but is flummoxed when Chalmers points out that the "steamed" burgers are clearly grilled. Tripping over his words, Skinner excuses himself from the table, only to discover that the kitchen is now in flames, as he had neglected to extinguish the roast that was burning in the oven earlier.

Acting as though everything is normal and the luncheon has simply come to a natural end, Skinner almost succeeds in getting Chalmers to leave quickly without noticing the fire. As he rises from the table, however, Chalmers is alarmed at the sight of a red glow coming from the kitchen. In his most preposterous lie yet, Skinner claims the glow is from the Aurora borealis. Though Chalmers is initially extremely skeptical of such an absurd claim, Skinner's cheerful insistence convinces him that it must be true, even when Skinner refuses to allow him to see the "Aurora" for himself.

As Skinner walks Chalmers out of the house, Agnes calls out to him from upstairs that the house is on fire, but Skinner dismissively calls back that "it's just the Northern Lights". The Superintendent states that although Skinner is an odd fellow, he "steam[s] a good ham". As he walks away, Agnes (off-screen) begins yelling out for for help. A concerned Chalmers looks back at Skinner, who gives him an insistent smile and thumbs-up. After Chalmers finally turns his back and walks away, Skinner races back into the house. The Springfield Fire Department rushes to extinguish the fire off-screen.

Foreign Dubs[]

  • Arabic
  • Brazilian Portuguese
  • Canadian French
  • Chinese
  • Czech
  • Danish
  • Finnish
  • French
  • German
  • Hindi/Urdu
  • Hungarian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Latin American Spanish
  • Luxembourgish
  • Norwegian
  • Portuguese
  • Punjabi
  • Spanish
  • Swedish

Transcript[]

View the Transcript here.

Goof(s)[]

  • Chalmers would have heard Skinner from the kitchen, as Skinner obviously spoke out loud.
  • Skinner could have simply made another roast to replace the ruined one, however, it is likely that Skinner did not have a reserve and he also did not have good cooking skills.

Trivia[]

  • The segment was popularized when it became an internet meme in 2017/2018. Internet users began making "Steamed Hams but..." videos, where the scene would be altered or re-made for comedic effect.
  • In The Road to Cincinnati, there is a restaurant called Steamed Hams.
  • A user called "Nightbane Games" recreated Steamed Hams mod in The Simpsons: Hit & Run.
  • On ROBLOX, a game platform, there is a game of the same name. It was created by Mah_Bucket, who is known to be a pedophile.
  • A Steamed Hams Christmas card is shown in the credits of Manger Things.
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