The Simpsons Season 34 Needs One Classic Treehouse of Horror

While “Treehouse of Horror” in The Simpsons’ 34th season will be hard to match the show’s best Halloween specials, the long-awaited return of one tradition may help the episode succeed. The Simpsons, for better or worse, has experimented with its format in recent seasons. The revelations of season 33 about Homer’s mother Mona proved that the Simpsons are still not afraid to cancel the existing canon, and in another episode of the same season, two classic stories from earlier editions of the long-running show were mixed.
Although the change of pace led to better reviews for the 33rd season of The Simpsons, not everything was smooth in the series. The Simpsons Halloween special “Treehouse of Horror XXXII” (season 33, episode 3) divided its story into five segments instead of the standard three, resulting in shorter stories and a more chaotic tone. Although it was a wonderful and interesting creative choice, the 34th season of The Simpsons should return to the original three-segment structure of the series “House of Horrors on a Tree.”
Related: Mr. Burns’ Phone Greeting Is One of the Simpsons’ Smartest Jokes
When the 33rd season of The Simpsons broke the Halloween tradition by dividing the episode “Treehouse of Horror” into five segments, this choice became a continuation of the project that the series had been working on for some time. The last few issues of Treehouse of Horror have been ambitious in their attempts to fit more than three segments into the show’s short run: Treehouse of Horror XXX (season 31, episode 4) includes an extended opening segment as well as the standard three. independent stories. However, this only led to shorter and less effective horror parodies. Thus, the special edition of the 34th season of The Simpsons, dedicated to Halloween, should return to the traditional three-segment format and give the parodies of the show a little time to rest.
Why three segments are needed in episodes of The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror
As the Simpsons’ iconic Stephen King parody “The Shining” showed, the classic “Treehouse of Horror” segments worked because their seven-minute duration gave the series enough time to create an ambitious parody, but still be short enough to remain sharp and edgy. On the contrary, in the 33rd season of “Treehouse of Horrors” there was a fragment in which intelligent trees brutally took revenge on the residents of Springfield, but this short parody was not nearly as effective as an earlier sketch from “Treehouse of Horrors XI” (season 12, episode 1) in which dolphins destroyed most of the cast of the show. This Simpsons parody worked because the segment had time to build tension before the bloody finale, while splitting the 20-minute episode into five segments left the 33rd season with a Halloween special that was too dynamic.
However, episode structure is not the only problem standing in the way of the success of “Treehouse of Horror” in the 34th season of “The Simpsons”. For the show to be successful, The Simpsons needs to revisit the origins of Treehouse of Horror as a parody of classic anthology horror stories, rather than a parody of films that are relevant only because of their relatively recent success. The eternal parodies of The Simpsons’ best Halloween specials are based on classic horror movies and vintage TV anthologies rather than another recent genre hit, meaning the series knows where it needs to look for inspiration when it comes time to write the next “Treehouse of Horror” special.