TV shows that know how to celebrate Halloween
By Aimee Oliver
Posted on October 28, 2015 in Television with tags
Halloween specials are usually an excuse for TV shows to get slightly creepier than normal. But few tend to go full pelt into blood, guts and gore. We have a mixture of both in a list of our favourite Hallowe’en-themed episodes – let us know if we’ve missed any classics in the comments below.
When I think of Halloween specials, the first thing to come to mind, time and again, is The Simpsons’ many Treehouse of Horror episodes. Highlights include Nightmare on Evergreen Terrace with a Freddy Krueger-styled Groundskeeper Willie, Maggie being the child of Kang and Marge, Homer becoming possessed by a killer toupee, and a take on Edgar Allen Poe’s The Raven.
But the best episode of all has to be Treehouse of Horror V, which has both teachers cooking and eating their students, and a spoof of The Shining.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Halloween in Sunnydale is meant to be the one night where the ghouls and goblins don’t come out to feast on human flesh, and thus our Scoobies let their hair down. But soon they’d find themselves turning into their costumes (Halloween), nearly getting bitten by an amorous vampire (All the Way) or trapped in a haunted house (Fear Itself) – and the latter is worth watching for Giles’ attempt at a scary costume (and Anya’s, of course).
Epidemiology tells the story of a Hallowe’en party gone awry; after eating an unknown substance, select partygoers become full-on zombies and all hell breaks loose, accompanied by a soundtrack consisting of ABBA tunes. Everything’s fine in the end; people get healed and the army turns up to erase everyone’s memories.
Parks and Recreation
Pawnee sure loves an excuse to dress up. Throughout the series there’s such an awesome display of costuming going on, from Sherlock Holmes to an aubergine, a sumo-wrestler after the weight loss to a sad Mr Potato Head, and Ron’s one, recycled, costume of a pirate.
In particular, Halloween Surprise has it all: Leslie dressing up as feminist icon Rosie the Riveter, Donna live-tweeting some godawful movie called “Death Canoe 4: Murder at Blood Lake” (of course I want to watch something with a title like that), Jerry almost dying from a fart-attack, and OTP Leslie and Ben getting engaged at the end. An unusually heart-warming Halloween treat.
American Horror Story
All you need to know about AHS is that it’s pretty gruesome and horrific, so really every episode would be suitable for a Halloween scare. But I’ve picked ‘Edward Mordrake: Part 1’ from Freakshow. In this episode the performers take Halloween off because of the carnival legend about a man called Edward Mordrake who murdered his entire troupe on Halloween. Legend says that if they perform on Halloween, he will return and take their soul…
Lightening the mood, we have Catwoman versus Supergirl and a stand-off between Dr Ross Gellar dressed as Spud-nik and Chandler in a pink bunny costume (not The Velveteen Rabbit as he’d wanted). Also making appearances are Phoebe’s awful twin Ursula and Sean Penn as her fiancé.
Winner of the best episode title, ‘It’s the Great Pumpkin, Sam Winchester’ involves sacrifices to Lucifer, exorcisms and lots of snarky comments from the Winchester brothers, as per usual.