The Simpsons doesn’t think that it scared you enough at Halloween, so the chills are going to, er, bleed into Thanksgiving.
Introducing “Thanksgiving of Horror,” a trilogy episode in the vein of the annual Halloween special, “Treehouse of Horror.” But this one — the 12th non-Treehouse trilogy in Simpsons history — aims to put blood and guts into your turkey feast instead of your trick-or-treat bag. Airing Nov. 24 at 8 p.m. on Fox, “Thanksgiving of Horror” is a true visual feast in its time slot, boasting the longest-ever running time for a Simpsons single episode in Simpsons history, clocking in at nearly 25 minutes.
The not-exactly-festive installment of the animated comedy whisks you through T-Days past, present, and future. Act 1 is set in the year 1621 at the first Thanksgiving, where innocent turkeys are terrorized by invading Pilgrims. Act 2 is a twisted, technology-tainted modern-day Thanksgiving and features Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker as the voice of a social media app inspired by the 2016 Black Mirror episode “Nosedive.” The third act takes place on the very last Thanksgiving, in the future on a spaceship that escapes a dying planet. “We love ‘Treehouse of Horror’ so much that, like Thanksgiving itself, we are greedy for a second helping of horror.” says Simpsons executive producer Matt Selman. “Thanksgiving is a scary holiday from unwanted political discussions to not knowing what time the food is being served. There’s a lot of fear there.” Before we enter this totally terrifying turkey-scape, Selman was kind enough to arm us with 10 teases for “Thanksgiving of Horror.”
1. “In homage to the classic scary Halloween names from ‘Treehouse of Horror,’ the show’s writers have yummy Thanksgiving names in this episode. For example, Joel H. Cohen becomes Joel Ate Corn.”
2. “The inspiration for Act One was to make a more pulse-pounding version of the movie Apocalypto.”
3. “The thrilling chase music in ‘A-Gobble-lyto’ includes actual turkeys gobbling.”
4. “The idea for a cranberry monster was inspired by sitcom writers lazily pitching on items on the Thanksgiving table, ‘cranberry’ being the second most obvious food.”
5. “The Simpsons, who are reimagined as a family of turkeys, speak only in gobble language, improvised by the voice actors at rehearsal.”
6. “Scary images recur in all three acts of the show, including a very terrifying brand of cranberry sauce, Bog Queen.”
7. “The plot of Black Mirror episode ‘White Christmas’ was the inspiration for ‘The Fourth Thursday After Tomorrow’ — with Homer in the Jon Hamm role. But like in ‘The USS Callister,’ we are rooting for the artificial intelligence to defeat the actual people.”
8. “The episode has many hidden Black Mirror Easter eggs, including references to ‘San Junipero,’ ‘The Waldo Moment,’ and ‘The National Anthem.” Mayor Quimby looks very uncomfortable with what he might have to do Spider-pig.”
9. “This is the last episode in which you will hear the late Russi Taylor voicing Martin Prince. But trust us, Russi’s Martin goes out in memorable style.”
10. “The end credits are shown over the original Simpsons-Thanksgiving connection: actual footage of the Bart balloon at the 1991 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.”
Your preview of the episode doesn’t stop here, though. Dig into the exclusive clip above to see technology go wrong as Homer flirts with an Alexa form of Marge.
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