Mr. Burns almost drowns while taking a bath after Smithers puts a sponge on his head that weighs him down. Later, after realizing that no one will carry on his legacy when he dies, Burns decides to try to find an heir that will inherit his vast fortune. He holds an audition and many of the boys in Springfield try out, including Nelson Muntz, Martin Prince, and Milhouse Van Houten. Bart and Lisa also try out and fail; Lisa because she is a girl, and Bart because he read Homer's badly-worded proposal. Angry and humiliated after the audition ends, only made worse by Burns kicking him in the butt with a mechanical boot, Bart pays him back by vandalizing his mansion. Mr. Burns approves of Bart's malevolence and decides to accept him as his heir.
Homer and Marge sign a legal document which officially names Bart as Mr. Burns' heir. Marge suggests that Bart should spend some time with Mr. Burns. While initially repelled by Mr. Burns' coldness, Bart begins to take a liking to him after Burns promises to give Bart whatever he wants out of his life. Bart decides to abandon his family because Mr. Burns allows him to do anything he likes. Bart's family becomes angry and wants him back, so they decide to sue Mr. Burns, but due to hiring Lionel Hutz as their lawyer, the court ends up deciding that Mr Burns is Bart's biological father. The Simpsons get a Private Investigator deprogrammer to kidnap Bart, but the deprogrammer wrongly takes Hans Moleman instead and brainwashes him into thinking he's a part of the Simpson family.
Meanwhile, Bart becomes lonely and wants to go back to his family. Mr. Burns does not want him to leave and tricks him into thinking that his family hates him, using a falsified video with actors playing the Simpson family. Bart decides that Burns is his true father and the two celebrate by firing employees at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant by ejecting them through a trap door. However, one of the employees is Homer and Mr. Burns then tries to break Bart's ties with his family by forcing him to fire Homer. Bart instead "fires" Burns and drops him through a trap door. Bart decides that he loves his family, and moves back in with them.