Treehouse of Horror (Fox)
Treehouse of Horror are the collection of Halloween-themed episodes of the animated series The Simpsons. Each Treehouse of Horror episode consists of three separate, self-contained segments. These segments usually involve the Simpson family in some horror, science fiction, or supernatural setting. They take place outside the show’s normal continuity and completely abandon any pretense of being realistic, being known for their far more violent and much darker nature than an average Simpsons episode. The first, entitled “Treehouse of Horror”, aired on October 25, 1990, as part of the second season and was inspired by EC Comics horror tales. Since then, there have been 29 other Treehouse of Horror episodes, with one airing every year. Episodes contain parodies of horror, science fiction, and fantasy films, as well as the alien characters Kang and Kodos, a special version of the opening sequence, and scary names in the credits. The show’s staff regard the Treehouse of Horror episodes as being particularly difficult to produce, as the scripts often go through many rewrites, and the animators typically have to design new characters and backgrounds. Many of the episodes are popular among fans and critics of the show and have inspired a whole offshoot of Simpsons merchandise, including action figures, playsets, video games, books, DVDs, comic books, and a special version of Monopoly. Several of the episodes have won awards for animation and sound editing. In 1996, 2013, and 2015, Treehouse of Horror VI, Treehouse of Horror XXIII, and Treehouse of Horror XXV were respectively nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award in the “Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour)” category. Some TV stations feature Treehouse of Horror marathons around Halloween.