The episode: “Radar Secret Service,” ep. 520
The riff: The line is called out by Tom Servo as two bumbling “radar police” peer over the edge of a small bridge.
The explanation: This riff is a direct reference to a song by singer-songwriter Bobbie Gentry, 1967’s “Ode to Billie Joe.” The song is a first-person narrative of a dysfunctional Southern family discussing the day’s events, including the suicide of local neighbor Billie Joe, who leapt to his death off the Tallahatchie Bridge. The song was a #1 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for Gentry, and was parodied by Bob Dylan’s 1967 song “Clothes Line Saga.”
Novelty factor: Completely new to me, as I’ve never heard of the song in my life.