Monday, October 31, 2011

Episode 3: Treehouse of Horror XXII

Hey look, a Halloween episode by The Simpsons that has actually aired before Halloween. The last time that happened? Treehouse of Horror X (Okay Treehouse of Horror XX aired before Halloween, but October 18th is too early to count it). So does that mean this will be good like the first 10? Only in the Twilight zone, I'm afraid. Let's celebrate Halloween with the scariest thought possible: Another horrible episode.

So the episode begins with Bart, Lisa and Maggie all coming home from Trick-or-Treating as Marge decides to give them 'healthy alternatives' as the kids walk off moaning (But she never took their candy, what are they complaining about?) The next morning, Marge gives Homer a bag full of candy (Wait, when did she get their candy? Oh wait, this is leading up to a predictable ending, my mistake) and she tells him to take it for donation. However, the Psycho theme starts playing and Homer decides to take the candy for himself and gets stuck in a canyon with a rock wedged on his hand (It doesn't make sense in context, you're not missing anything).
Aron Ralston, you are not
So after Homer gets told a helicopter won't be there for 20 minutes (Great to see them use their cameos oh so effectively), Homer decides he needs to bite his hand off... didn't they do this EXACT same joke in The Blue and the Gray from last year? THEY DID! You lazy bastards!! Didn't work then and doesn't work now. However he fails on the first two tries and in a flashforward, he finally bites his right arm off (With no real effort apparently) and when he opens the bag, it turns out to be vegetables, which prompts him to shout NO at the top of his lungs (Not as bad as Vader's 'NO!' but it's close). This prompts a cut to Bart, Lisa and Maggie all eating their candy as we FINALLY get the title sequence at the 2:35 mark. Okay, mini rant here:

  • WHY THE FUCK DID THEY FEEL THE NEED TO MAKE THAT 2:35 LONG OUT OF A 21 MINUTE EPISODE?! I'll fix it quickly: Bart, Lisa and Maggie all get their candy, dupe Marge and Homer that night and cut to them in Bart's room that night eating the candy. Voila! I just cut out a little over a minute and it's just as effective. But no, that would require them to actually put effort into 3 6-minute segments, now it's far less effort for them. That was long and pointless, let's move onto the first segment.
The Diving Bell and the Butterball
The segment begins with a POV shot from Homer as he opens his eyes to see Bart and Bart goes running off. We're informed by Marge that Homer is paralyzed and he cannot speak or move from his spot on the floor (YES! YES! YES! He cannot speak, oh glorious days, wonderful days... wait a second, we're going to hear his narration throughout aren't we? Dammit! So close). So of course, to find out what happened to Homer, we go into a flashback as we see Homer decorating the house as a spider crawls into the decorations and he accidentally grabs it, acts like the Homer we all (unfortunately) know and loathe, causing the spider to bite him (I like how the writers expect us to care if he lives of dies, for me, he's the missing member of this season's Jersey Shore). Back in the present, we see Marge caring for Homer as Homer loves Marge for what she's doing, only to be sidetracked by Marge's cleavage... Classy. We then see Lisa reading to Homer as Homer decides to try to get rid of Lisa by farting.
Dad, you look absolutely ridiculous
It doesn't drive her away as he would like, but then Lisa realizes that Homer can control his farts and thus communicate with other people... excuse me a minute... *Screams obscenities at the top of my throat in the woods* ...I mean seriously?! What the fuck?! Did the writers really think that the Master and Cadaver segment was so amazing, they had to top it with a segment even Family Guy would be ashamed of? And the worst part? To even associate this with The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is a complete insult to that movie and despicable  You know what, this segment's lost me already, I'd quit right now and move onto the next segment, but I owe you all the knowledge of how this plays out, *Sigh* let's continue. So Lisa creates a code for Homer's farts (Are they really taking this serious?) and Lisa reads a romantic letter to Marge which ends with the line "For further communication, I will need more beans" (*Facepalm* Ugh I hate this segment) Homer then is put outside as he ponders about life, but that's interrupted when he gets bitten by a glowing green spider and we see *Sigh* Spider-Homer... how did this segment just get worse?
And because the writers have the attention span of a 5 year-old: Homer farting webs...
We then see Dumbass-Homer (Not calling him Spider-Homer anymore, I like this name better) as he swings into some robbers and then farts a web onto them... did I just type that? My brain is melting here. The episode ends with Homer taking Marge back home... I just realized nothing happened here, it just a bunch of scenes with no real connections between each other, this felt like it was written by someone with ADD, God this was terrible, next segment.

Dial D for Diddly
(How many times can they use the same title like this?) The segment begins with Flanders narrating as he's driving through downtown Springfield watching all the crime and sin being committed around him. After Nelson's mom tries to seduce him (Which leads to a "Yale School of Prostitution"... the hell?) we go into that bit which was shown at the comic-con (still makes about as much sense out of context as it does in context). After Ned watches Mr Burns dump nuclear waste into the lake (Am I the only one who thinks Mr Burns would be too lazy to do it himself, maybe with Smithers, but not by himself) Ned gets instructions from God himself to kill Mr. Burns (Okay the odds right now stand at 'Homer imitating God' as the favorite, followed by Reverend Lovejoy, Chief Wiggum, Comic Book Guy and 'God himself' being the underdog). After killing Burns, Ned talks about how he's now God' soldier against sin... and his next assignment is to kill Patty and Selma. After Ned questions that, God gets angry and it's revealed that Homer has been talking through a voice modulator to convince Ned he's God (Hey look at that, I predicted their 'twist'on the first try. This writing is predictably God-awful).
I present to you all; King Louis XVI... wait sorry, it's just Burns, my mistake
It's revealed that Ned's Bible has the other transmitter and Ned NEVER questions this even though Homer basically gives himself away with his latest bit (Doesn't Ned have Mensa-level intelligence? Oh right, just forget that, the writers did). After a terrible Roadrunner parody of Ned killing Patty and Selma (How was that funny? They basically did the opposite of what made those cartoons funny. I just think to Bart's Inner Child for how this is done correctly) Homer then gets Flanders to kill more people because he can... I'm sorry where's the humor again? The past two segments have failed to have any horror feel, so it should fall back on humor, the problem is that there is no humor, so this segment is just boring right now. However, Flanders FINALLY catches on and tells Homer he's going to kill Homer for sending him to hell.
Even God hates Jerkass Homer
However, Jerkass Homer scoffs off his death threat and taunts Flanders to the point that God removes the ceiling just so he can choke Homer and kill him (Hooray! Can we play that again? That was so satisfying). Marge comes in and asks God to return everything to normal (Again, did they just think Master and Cadaver was such a great segment or something?) and God says he can't because Satan will get upset. The segment ends with Satan treating God as his servant and Maude appearing as Satan's mistress... I've got nothing, the writers didn't know how to end this segment.

In the Na'vi
Hey look, it only took them about two years to finally make an Avatar parody. Anyone want to take bets on how long it takes them to do a Smurfs 'parody'. I'm going say three years, seems about right for their timeline. Okay, enough screwing around. The segment begins with Chalmers addressing everyone in the giant mech suit from the movie about the planet they're on (Didn't that suit come at the very end? Oh right, logic has no place here). Chalmers hands it over to Krusty as apparently they're on the planet to get some 'Hilarium' which makes people laugh at anything (Oh... so that's why Al Jean was looking for a space shuttle last month). After Chalmers picks Bart to play the role of Jake Sully, Lisa puts Bart in the pod where he goes through a vortex and ends up as a Kodos/Kang alien (Give them credit, they could have easily made the vortex the Doctor Who vortex in the opening).
Watch out for the TARDIS, Bart
After a pointless bit with the bullies, we see Alien Bart and Alien Milhouse trying to fly but failing and this forces Bart to walk, but not after an Alien Taxi with a terrible accent arrives (These jokes are terrible). After Bart gets eaten by a plant, some random female Alien (Obviously Neytiri) saves him and then instantly falls in love with Alien Bart (This segment gets the most time and yet somehow feels like the least amount of effort was given). After some more padding with not-Neytiri scolding Alien Milhouse for hurting nature (Why is she yelling all the time? I don't get it, in Avatar, none of the Na'vi yelled, so why include it here? It's not poking fun at them, it's just random.) not-Neytiri (I don't care what her name is) and Bart have... sex? What the HELL is going on? The Dunwich Horror's ending wasn't nearly this confusing. Afterwards, AB accidentally spills the beans about him being from Earth and he tries to explain Earth to NN. NN doesn't get what AB is talking about but believes Bart (Wait what just happened?). AB then finds out that NN is pregnant and apparently this means that they need to give NN some 'Hilarium' to prevent her from getting cranky, if this seems rushed to you, don't worry, nothing about this segment is redeemable so far.
Eww... don't you know where that stuff has been?
I'm trying my hardest to have this make sense, but it's near impossible with the material given here, I don't think I get it. Kang (Or Kodos) tells AB that the Hilarium is secreted from the queen's drool and Alien Milhouse calls the base to tell them they found it (Oh, by the way, Alien Milhouse is now with Bart, despite leaving him a while ago. Consistency be damned!) AB scolds AM for betraying the aliens (Not that AB has enough character development to explain why he's now supporting the aliens. Dear God this hurts me physically) and faster than you can say 'bullshit' the military arrives and they decide to shoot up the aliens... WHY ARE THEY DOING THIS?! In Avatar they killed the aliens because Jake said the Na'vi wouldn't give up the tree no matter what. Here, they come in guns-a-blazing shooting up the place after finding out where the source is. And the scenario is totally different as requesting for 'Hilarium' would be much easier than obtaining the stuff from Avatar. Ugh, the writing style for this show is simply: Watch a movie, forget all purpose and meanings of ANYTHING from the movie, replace characters from movie with Simpsons characters. It's just so pathetic how bad this is. After some of the aliens get killed, animals start coming out of nowhere and start shooting things out their faces (Or mouths) to fight the military... I give up, let's end this as quick as possible.
Ahh, I get the joke. A robot within a robot; Robotception!
After a boring fight ensues, Chalmers gets into a bigger mech that his mech controls to fight a bulldozer animal controlling a bigger bulldozer animal (And the joke is?) The segment ends with NN, Kang and Kodos saying that they would have given the humans the Hilarium if they asked because they don't believe that anything belongs to anyone (This isn't a satire of Avatar, the writers missed the point of Avatar completely... urge to kill rising!) The show itself ends with everyone saying Halloween is over and to begin Christmas shopping to stimulate the economy (Remember the ending to Bart Simpson's Dracula and how the Christmas ending was meant to be ridiculous? To hell with that, THIS ending is the funny one... If you'll excuse me, I've got a bottle of Prozac with my name on it).

Final Verdict: This was just putrid, possibly worse than last year's, we had a segment with farting Homer, a segment that felt repeating the same scene ad nauseum would work and a segment that's not topical, funny nor gets the point of satire whatsoever. The writing was awful, the jokes were terrible and none of these segments FELT like a Treehouse of Horror segment, they felt more like incomplete episodes. I pray that this results in a drop in the ratings moreso and FOX decides to cancel that new extension given to this show.

Final Grade: 1.8/10 Will give you nightmares, but not the type you want


  1. I'm in the middle of a THoH marathon right now (on The Shinning)

    Remember when they parodied horror movies?

  2. And The Twilight Zone... *Sigh* those were the days.

  3. Wow after 2-3 weeks of the X-Factor ruining Sundays we get to see the worst Animation Domination entry. (Yeah I even found the new show more entertaining that this)

  4. They seemed to forget the outrageous 'Horror' aspect, and these just felt like the place they threw their bad episode ideas. In the Avatar parody, the just seemed to replicate them exactly and forget substance. There was no blood, outrageous deaths, or a series of gruesome events. This sucks. Worse than the Twilight parody.

  5. @Revue I'm going to have to take your word on that

    @Alkhani With this show scrapping the idea that 3-segment (Now-a-days 4 segment) episodes are THoH only, this is NOT a THoH but rather just a bland, forgettable 3-segment (I do not count 2 minutes of filler as a segment) episode with Kang and Kodos.

  6. Great article, Kriken. Would you know right after you said the writing got God-awful, all I heard in my head was the "boom-tish" sound effect.

    Reading this article, the show now sounds like it is written by 10-year olds with little concentration efforts.

  7. *Re-reads post* accidentally pun there, oh well. I think 10-year olds would be insulted by that statement.