Troy McClure gives a tour of the "Museum of TV and Television" and mentions spin-off shows. He shows that FOX needed some new shows for their fall line up, and the Simpsons made three new shows to fill up the schedule. He then presents the three new shows.
Chief Wiggum P.I.
In this small skit, Chief Wiggum and Skinny Boy (Principal Skinner) return to their old town, New Orleans, to combat a newcomer gangster known as "Big Daddy". Later that night the gangster sneaks into Chief Wiggum's HQ and sends a crocodile to eat Wiggum. Fortunately, Skinny Boy strangles the animal to death. The two then discover that Ralph Wiggum has been taken, and replaced with Big Daddy's calling card in a skull.
The next day, Chief Wiggum and Skinny Boy are discussing the crime, when they hear some noise outside. They walk outside and notice that there are tons of huge floats flying around. Suddenly, four huge heads surround the chief. Lucky for him, the heads fall off revealing the people to be none other than the Simpsons. After having a short discussion with the family about Mardi Gras, Wiggum spots Ralph standing on Big Daddy's shoulder's saying, "Look, Big Daddy! There's regular daddy!" Big Daddy lifts Ralph off his shoulders and runs away. Chief Wiggum and Skinny Boy give chase.
The five run through town until Big Daddy comes upon two boats and steals one. Wiggum and Skinny Boy then hop in the other one and continue the chase. They chase each other through a canal and approach a small island with a mansion on it. Skinny Boy comments that it is the governor's mansion that disappeared two weeks earlier. The five run into the mansion until they arrive in the main office where Big Daddy hops into a chair and quickly turns around. Having the idea of being caught, Big Daddy tosses Ralph into Chief Wiggum's hands, and jumps out the window, and begins to swim away. The skit finishes with Skinner making a quip, and the three laughing on a freeze-frame.
The Love-Matic Grampa
While at Moe's Tavern, Moe becomes lonely, until he realizes that Grampa's spirit is inside his love tester. Grampa explains that when he was going to heaven, he got lost along the way. He then tells Moe that the reason he can't get a date is because he's too crabby, and when Moe denies it, Grampa dares him to "charm the next pretty young thing that walks into the bar." On cue, Homer enters the bar, but as Grampa starts harassing him, Homer unplugs the tester and leaves angrily. As Moe replugs Grampa, a beautiful lady named Betty enters, asking to use the phone after a car accident. With Grampa's help, Moe charms her and scores a date with her at a fancy French restaurant. Having regained his dating mojo, Moe thanks Grampa profusely, and as Grampa makes a few quips, Moe shakes his head good-humoredly and shrugs at the camera.
The next night, Moe has his date but is still nervous, so he brings Grampa along and puts him in the bathroom. When Moe needs advice, he runs to the bathroom, only to see the machine being smashed by hoodlums Jimbo, Kearney and Dolph, with Kearney complaining that the machine called him gay. The machine starts malfunctioning and Moe takes his dazed ramblings as advice. He comes back to the bathroom, livid and wearing his dinner. Betty comes in, realizes the trouble Moe went through for her, and is touched (to his great surprise), thanking him with a kiss. After Grampa makes one last quip, the new couple laughs and the skit ends.
The Simpson Family Smile Time Variety Hour
The Simpsons host their own show in Radio City Music Hall. The whole family is there, except for Lisa, who simply refuses and is replaced by a teenage cheerleader. The whole family is there along with many favorites such as Waylon Smithers, the Sea Captain, and Hans Moleman. The show features various skits including "What if The Simpsons Were Beavers", "The Candy Song", and "A Poem By Hans Moleman". Tim Conway guest stars, and at the end the whole family gets into a pillow fight.
Troy McClure ends the special by explaining upcoming 'story-lines' for Season 9, which included: Selma marrying, Itchy, Lenny, and Bumblebee Man, Bart discovering he has two long lost brothers, Homer gaining magical powers and turning Lisa into a frog, and Homer (and nobody else) being able to see a tiny alien named Ozmodiar. Although none of those things actually happened in Season 9, these story-lines came true to some extent in some later episodes.
Behind the Laughter
In its original American broadcast, "The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase" finished 61st place in the weekly ratings for the week of May 5–May 11, 1997 with a Nielsen rating of 7.3. It was the seventh highest rated show on the Fox Network that week. Even though Troy mentions that The Simpsons, Melrose Place, and The X-Files are the only shows worth a slot in the next season's lineup, three other Fox shows actually did better than The Simpsons that week. These were Beverly Hills, 90210, King of the Hill, and Married... with Children.