– TV Review –
PHOTO: On the annual spooktacular Halloween special, Bart and Lisa are transported to a demon-filled alternate in the all-new “Treehouse of Horror XXV” episode of THE SIMPSONS airing Sunday, Oct. 19 (8:00-8:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX. THE SIMPSONS ™ and © 2014 TCFFC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


By Sean Marshall, Staff Writer for The Current

Treehouse of Horror has become somewhat of a cultural legacy for American television. Competing with football among other Halloween programming, the loveable yellow family returned Sunday evening for it’s 25th anniversary special.

The episode contained three vignettes, including a graduation from Hell school, parodies of Stanley Kubrick films and a haunting from the ghosts of Simpson’s past.

The Simpsons delivered, as per tradition, their usual dark and scathing brand of comedy, shelling out pop culture references and jokes quicker than a trick-or-treater running towards a house full of candies.

An exorbitant cast of Hollywood A-listers lent their voices for the episode, although some of scenes zip by so fast that they are difficult to spot at times. Morgan Freeman, George Clooney, Clint Eastwood and Jennifer Lawrence (without any scandalous photos included) teamed up with the crew opening with the usual ghoulishly punny credits rolling concocted by “Bat Groening.”

Without missing a beat, Treehouse delivered a dizzying array of entertainment-savvy quips about iPads, comic book characters and even a jab at their own television network.

In the first beat, Bart & Lisa discover a portal to Hell through ancient runes written on a desk at school. Bart’s creative imagination makes him excel in his studies and impresses his infernal instructors. Groening’s Simpson Hell is a satirical treat for die-hard fans and tertiary viewers too as the brother and sister trek through the underworld and Homer allows his son a macabre offering for his academic achievements.

“A Clockwork Yellow” follows in the next slot as a parody of Kubrick’s ultraviolent “A Clockwork Orange.” Moe functions as the leader of the iconic “droogs.” Kubrick fans get a real treat with a “cameo” appearance and a new take on “Eyes Wide Shut” as the gang makes their way to an erotic party at Mr. Burn’s Mansion.

As a final wrap, the Simpson’s family is haunted by spirits of their former selves, as Homer flirts with a crudely drawn Marge from “The Tracey Ullman Show.” A loveable combination of other popular big-screen characters are also “Simpsonized” as they rummage the streets of Springfield.

“Treehouse of Horror” hits the nail on the coffin head with its 25th installment of the episode. There is a unique place in TV culture for this Halloween special, and the Simpsons deliver a devilishly funny bag of goodies. For a series that has been around for over 25 years, the producers may be writing well in to the afterlife.

© The Current 2014