9. “The Oeder Games”
(Season 5, Episode 21)
Five seasons in, it’s difficult for Bob’s Burgers to feel ambitious anymore. They’ve done everything, including wilderness episodes, anthologies, musicals, and film parodies. What else is there for them to do? How about a Hunger Games parody that makes a water balloon fight actually feel intense?
The reason “The Oeder Games” works so well is because of the stakes it sets up. If it were just a water balloon fight, it wouldn’t elicit much of a reaction. But, because it’s a group of people fighting for lower rent, you want to see the Belchers win. Even more, you want to see everybody win and rise up against Mr. Fischoeder, but even he has been developed so much that you don’t want to see him lose completely. And with all of that emotion coming from a water balloon fight, the writers find a way to tie everything up perfectly, delivering an ending that only a show that has developed its characters this well can pull off.
The ending credits features a water balloon fight set to the cast singing “99 Red Balloons,” a beautiful way to close a season that I underestimated.
Best moment: When Mr. Fischoeder is tired of being the bad guy.