The episode: “Hercules Against the Moon Men,” ep. 410
The riff: Mumbled by Crow as an old, weathered man scribbles with his quill on a sheet of parchment.
The explanation: Aristophanes is one of the founding fathers of ancient Greek theater, specifically in the genre of comedy. His surviving works essentially define the Greek style of “old comedy” and give the most complete portrait we have of daily life in ancient Athens. They were typically politically charged and full of satire, singling out individuals such as the philosopher Socrates. Through his plays, Aristophanes wielded considerable political clout of his own.
Novelty factor: I’ve never actually seen a play by Aristophanes, but I know a handful of them and I’ve read about the playwright before.