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Song IconSimpsons "Happy Birthday Lisa"

About "Happy Birthday Lisa"

"Stark Raving Dad" is the first episode of the third season of the American animated television series The Simpsons. It first aired on the Fox network in the United States on September 19, 1991. In the episode, Homer is sent to a mental institution for wearing a pink shirt to work, where he shares a room with a man who claims to be pop star Michael Jackson. Meanwhile, Bart promises his sister Lisa he will get her the best birthday present ever.

The episode was written by Al Jean and Mike Reiss, and directed by Rich Moore. Michael Jackson guest-starred as Leon Kompowsky, but went uncredited for contractual reasons; his role was not confirmed until later. Jackson was a fan of the show and called creator Matt Groening offering to do a guest spot. Jackson pitched several story ideas and wrote the song "Happy Birthday Lisa" for the episode.

The character's singing voice was performed by a soundalike, Kipp Lennon, due to contractual obligations Jackson had with his record company. The episode references Jackson's career, with Kompowsky singing portions of the songs "Billie Jean" and "Ben".

"Stark Raving Dad" received generally positive reviews, particularly for its writing and Jackson's performance. A sequel in which Kompowsky would have been voiced by Prince was canceled after Prince refused the script.

A 1992 rerun featured an alternative opening in response to a speech by President George H. W. Bush, in which he said American households should "be a lot more like the Waltons and a lot less like the Simpsons". In March 2019, shortly before the Disney–Fox deal was finalized, following renewed allegations of sexual abuse against Jackson, the episode was pulled from circulation. As a result, the episode is unavailable on Disney+ and the post-2019 re-releases of the season 3 DVD, but is still present on Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, and the official YouTube listing.

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