“At last, I’m going to do what Bob never could: kill Bart Simpson!” – Cecil Terwilliger
“By throwing me off a dam? Isn’t that a little crude for a genius like you?” – Bart Simpson
“Ooh, I suppose it is. Enh. If anyone asks, I’ll lie.” – Cecil Terwilliger
The annual Halloween episode has come and gone, and this year’s was just as bland and forgettable as last year’s, and the year before that, etcetera. Perhaps next year’s will break the cycle of boredom, but I guess we’ll have to wait to find out.
– Before we get started, let’s just pause for a moment to note that this is the twenty-sixth(!) edition of this. Jebus.
– Another weird opening, this time a bad “Grinch Stole Christmas” take off. Took the better part of two minutes, though, so at least there’s that.
– Segment one opens with Bart spinning Wendell on a merry-go-round so the kids can gamble on when he’ll puke. Wendell both barfs and doesn’t, so Bart somehow keeps the money and no one cares. This is off to an incoherent start.
– Sideshow Bob shows up to tell us what we just saw and explain a joke about the wallpaper on Milhouse’s phone.
– Bob’s dancing around with Bart’s intestines on his shoulders. Kinda weird.
– Bob is now drinking Bart’s blood with some wine. You know how you can tell these segments are slapdash? We’re two minutes in and barely anything has happened except Bart and/or Bob explaining what we’re seeing at that moment. For a brief comparison, by the two minute mark of “The Shining”, the family has arrived at the house, Bart’s met Willie and had his power explained, and Burns and Smithers are cutting off the cable TV and beer supply.
– After nothing happened for another minute, Bob is now using Bart’s corpse for putting practice.
– Bob stepped on a rake. Good work, guys.
– Bob is expositing again. Seems he misses Bart.
– Now we’ve got a montage of Bob killing Bart and reanimating him. This is gonna go on for a while.
– Homer just exposited what the “Reanimate” lever does after we saw a montage of it working.
– Anyway, that ended. On to segment two, “Homerzilla”! (There’s a fresh idea.)
– You know that joke where dubbed Japanese dialogue is deliberately offset from the character’s mouths (they did it at the juicer factory in Season 4)? They just did that joke, but had Comic Book Guy pre-explain it by saying, “Yes, let us show disrespect with poorly dubbed laughter.” Woof.
– Two minute mark. Still expositing the setup.
– Homerzilla is attacking now. It’s just a series of disconnected and not terribly clever sight gags. Ooh, Homerzilla has the fighter planes on yo-yo strings!
– And now we’ve swerved into a movie parody where Hollywood executives remake Homerzilla as a big, American extravaganza. Still mostly just Homer doing weak sight gags like plugging Buzz cola.
– And it ends on them narrating text we can read.
– Segment three just started with Lisa, off screen, expositing at Bart and Milhouse. Milhouse then fell down a hole, but told us about it so we wouldn’t get confused. Then Lisa and Bart talked about getting in the hole, then they got in the hole.
– Apparently we’re doing a Chronicle thing here, so the annoyances of found footage movies can come to the small, animated screen. Lisa and Milhouse have powers, Bart doesn’t and . . .
– Now Lisa lets us know that, “Milhouse has gone mad with power”. K.
– Now Maggie has superpowers and the episode finally gets around to ending with another montage.
– And we end on another admission that the show sucks, with Kang and Kodos yelling that it isn’t Season 4 anymore.
Anyway, since I’ve been blissfully slacking on this, let’s take a look at the numbers for the last three episodes. Two weeks ago, “Puffless” pulled just 3.29 million viewers, which places it at #10 on the all time least viewed list. A week ago, “Halloween of Horror” was watched by 3.63 million viewers. That makes it #16.
Of course, neither of those episodes had a football lead-in the way last night’s did. “Treehouse of Horror XXVI” was seen by an appropriately spooky 6.66 million viewers, which counts as a good number for Zombie Simpsons these days. That’s about a million people less than last year’s Halloween show, a dropoff that’s been pretty consistent this year.