CARBONDALE — One of SIU’s apparently less-than-distinguished former students showed up on primetime television Sunday evening.
On the Oct. 12 episode of “The Simpsons,” Marge Simpson opens a sandwich shop franchise in Springfield but faces difficulty when it comes to finding good employees. That’s when Gil Gunderson, Springfield’s perennially down-on-his-luck sad sack, comes walking in with his resume in hand.
“As you can see, I was just two credits short at Southern Illinois, and I’ve got to be honest with you, Marge, I need this job bad,” Gunderson pleads.
Marge gives Gunderson the job, after which he appears outside the restaurant dressed as a sandwich and passing out flyers for “Two for One Tuesday.”
However, Gunderson seems to be working a few jobs at once, also advertising “Tell You Their Real Names Tuesday” at a local exotic dancer club, as well as the location of some luxury condos in Springfield.
Marge soon fires Gunderson, who takes the dismissal in stride.
“I guess I had it coming,” he says. “Can I take some bologna heels?” Marge obliges.
Bill Odenkirk, a veteran writer for the show, penned Sunday’s episode, which was titled “Super Franchise Me.” While Naperville native Odenkirk has no direct tie to SIU, his brother, Bob Odenkirk, does. Actor Bob, a comedian now known for his role as attorney Saul Goodman on the show “Breaking Bad,” attended SIU in the late 1970s. Perhaps not coincidentally, Bob Odenkirk left SIU just three credits short of graduation, according to multiple sources.