Scullyfied Simpsons: Season 9, Episode 4: Treehouse of Horror VIII

Airdate: October 26, 1997

This might be the start to the most infamous era in Simpsons history (this is Mike Scully’s first episode at the helm), but this is not a bad episode at all. THOH was actually pretty good right up until the show made the shift to HD.

Like my review of “Bottomless Pit”, we will go segment by segment. Like always, SPOILERS!

First Segment:

After Mayor Quimby goes too far with his jokes about the French, the aforementioned French decide to do the logical thing… and nuke Springfield to a crisp. Homer survives because he was in a bomb shelter he was looking to buy to save himself. Homer is stunned by the fact that he is the last human being alive but begins partying like it’s the end of the world (pun intended). However, mutated Springfielders show up to try and create a utopian society without past mistakes… meaning that Homer is toast.

The first segment is probably my favorite segment of the episode. To an extent, it reminds me a bit of Red Dwarf (average joe schmoe is the last person of his kind). Homer’s celebration of his freedom reminds us of the human id; we act on the first opportunity. However, the scene where he cries over his family really show his heart of gold… something that would be quite a bit less visible over the coming years. And must we mention Comic Book Guy’s words as he realizes that he will be the center of the nuclear explosion?

(Almost deadpan) “Oh, i’ve wasted my life.”

Just… awesome.

Second Segment: Fly vs. Fly

Homer purchases a matter transporter to make getting to the fridge that much easier, amongst other things. Having been refused access to the transporter, Bart sneaks downstairs in the middle of the night to test it out, and realizes that if two living beings are granted access to the machine at the same time, their physical features swap. Bart tries it out with a fly, but winds up becoming a fly with Bart’s head, while the fly reappears with Bart’s body.

Probably my least favorite of the three, this still contains many a laugh due to it’s shoutout to The Fly and the amount of physical comedy. Plus, why else would somebody use a matter transporter? To do simple tasks, of course! Still, the family holds on to the idiot ball rather firmly, as they think that Bart’s head is just a fly, and that it is a phase. Also, Homer chasing Bart around the house with an axe? While it’s funny, it also shows the earliest signs that Mike Scully was taking Homer to strange new places.

Third Segment: Easy Bake Coven

It is the late 1690s. Sprynge-Fylde is undergoing a nasty witch hunt, with few spared. Goody Simpson becomes the victim of the next cull. She winds up facing the ultimate test of witchcraft;

“You sit on the broom and we shove you off the cliff. If you’re innocent, you will fall to an honorable Christian death. If you are, however, the bride of Satan, you will surely fly your boom to safety. At that point, you will report back here for torture and beheading.”

They push her off a cliff… and are proven right. Marge goes back to her cavern, alongside Patty and Selma. They decide to go out and capture some kids. In the process, they start Halloween.

Another great one, although HΩmega beats this out by a slim margin. It’s funnier if you read The Crucible. I had to read that in school; pretty good. Really, it’s if they took Springfield and threw it back 300 years, with almost perfect recreation. Bonus points go to the town hall meeting, which will leave almost everybody in stitches.

Overall, a pretty awesome THOH. There seems to be very little concern about the future of the show, right? Well…

Score: I’ve decided that THOH episodes will not receive a score, nor will be counted in seasonal wrap-ups. They would be at the top of the list of best episodes of the seasons, so I might as well just review them without a score.

Speaking of score, I will be adding extra indicators to Scully-Era Simpsons.


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