Study break: The Simpsons “Tree House of Horror XXVI” Review

Photo source 20th Century Fox

Photo source 20th Century Fox

George Johnston

This year’s “Tree House of Horror” episode to borrow a phase from Lisa Simpson, “meh.”

Here’s a break down of the tree segments:

Wanted Dead Then Alive

Sideshow bob has been trying to kill Bart Simpson for 24 years and this year he finally succeeds, even if it’s only for this episode.

The best parts of the segment were Kelsey Grammer coming back to voice Sideshow Bob and the little references to all of all Sideshow Bob’s pervious appearances in Simpson’s episodes.

The rest of “Wanted Dead Then Alive” was a dull affair. In the segment’s second act Sideshow Bob becomes melancholy after his purpose of killing Simpson is conclude. In this typical twisted fashion, Bob invents a machine that allows him to revive Bart as many times as he wishes. Witnessing Bob repeatedly revive and kill Bart was suppose to be funny, but it made the segment even repetitive and tedious.


The king of all monsters has been Homer Simpson-ized. Much like a past a past “Tree House of Horror” episode where King Kong was made to look like Homer, Godzilla get the same treatment. This segment was the most disappointing because it did not follow through with the Godzilla story or even try ti be a decent meta-commentary on the franchise itself.

“Telepaths of Glory:

In this parody of the found-footage  movie genre and “Chronicle,” Bart, Lisa and their friend Milhouse stumble upon and then fall into some chemical waste. Lisa and Milhouse gain telepathic abilities while Bart, due to his low intelligence, does not. There was only joke that worked at the beginning of the segment when Bart tells Lisa who’s fliming the whole thing ,”It’s important nowadays that everything be on film”

That was a nice bit of social commentary on the video obsessed culture americans currently live in. The dues ex machina resolution of the plot cam out of nowhere and while cute, only added to the baldness of the segment. If there’s going to a resolution like that in a comedy, at least poke fun at it.

“Tree House of Horror XXI’ was neither horrific of comedic, it was borriffic. Stay away from this year’s episode and revisit a classic like  “Treehouse of Horror V” instead.

George Johnston can be reached at [email protected] or @gjohnston786 on Twitter.