I have a feeling that this week’s episode of Bob’s Burgers made Tesla-philes everywhere thrilled to see the Thomas Edison “Topsy” controversy brought to light for a new audience. Leave it to Louise to find her motivation for learning in a spite-fueled vendetta against her Edison obsessed science teacher.
Obviously, no one had prepared Mr. Dinkler for Louise when he stepped into that classroom for the first time. He lacked the cautious attitude that most adults seem to have when interacting with Louise, and instead of giving in or willfully ignoring her like most other adults, Mr. Dinkler challenged her head on. This made for some great classroom screaming matches between the two of them, but I think we all knew who would wind up in a puddle of his own salty tears at the end of the day.
The librarian that inspired Louise to look up the story of Topsy was hysterical. In his normal speaking voice, he was the epitome of a dorky librarian, but his screaming whisper was like the voice of every internet conspiracy debate come to life. I especially liked his line telling the kids to look up Topsy on the internet because “books are stupid.” Clearly this librarian has identity issues, but I hope he’ll be back in future Bob’s Burgers episodes because his character was one of the highlights of the episode.
While the kids were busy involving the whole town in Louise’s science fair project, Linda and Bob were having an inventors duel of their own. Linda was inspired to improve upon Bob’s “Spice-ceps” by developing her own “Spice-rack” and the two of them began to bicker about which design was more ingenious. The reality was that both ideas were terrible and impractical but I liked seeing Bob and Linda get a little competitive with one another.
Gene’s musical production abilities came together and he put on a legit show that showed off his talent and network of musical connections in the elementary school world. I wasn’t expecting to see Gail and Mr. Fischoeder get so involved in this episode, but Gene’s casting was spot on and their duet was hilarious. Of course, Gene was upset that he forgot the fart sounds in the final production, but I think most will agree, we were better off with him forgetting.
While Louise and Gene were taking advantage of Topsy’s sad story for somewhat selfish reasons, Tina was the only one who was invested in telling Topsy’s story for Topsy’s sake. Tina was genuinely dedicated to telling the world about what happened to Topsy and her conversation with Topsy in her panic-induced hallucination was sweet and so perfectly fit in with her character (including the bit about getting hair advice from an elephant.)
The music in tonight’s episode of Bob’s Burgers was some of the best we’ve seen on the show thus far. “Electric Love” has been stuck in my head since the episode ended and I seriously can not wait to see what the Bob’s Buskers cover of it will be like (and I hope both versions will be available for download at some point because that tune is so catchy.) Although Tesla wasn’t really brought up during the episode, we did get a little glimpse of a disapproving Nikola Tesla as Topsy and Edison climbed the clouds during the ending credits. It was a great little call out to Tesla geeks everywhere and a clever way to wrap up an episode like “Topsy.”