[1F04] Treehouse of Horror IV

Treehouse of Horror IV                      Written by Watch Conan O'Brien, The
                                         Late Bill Oakley, The Estate of Josh  
                                                Weinstein, Greg "It's Alive!"  
                                         Daniels, The Disfigured Dan McGrath,  
                                                      Bilious Bill Canterbury  
                                                  Directed by David "Dry Bones"
Production code: 1F04                       Original airdate in N.A.: 28-Oct-93
                    Capsule revision M, 21-Jul-96 / Interim update A, 19-Dec-99

Title sequence

Title      :- The Simpsons Hallowe'en Special IV

Gravestones:- Elvis -- Accept It

           :- A Balanced Budget

           :- Subtle Political Satire

           :- TV Violence (gets riddled by bullets)

Couch      :- The undead Simpson family enter through the living room
              floor before sitting on the couch.  The painting over the
              couch is a sinking ship surrounded by circling sharks.

Did you notice...

    ... the creature that serves Homer the donut has a "Hell's Kitchen"
        apron on?
    ... Lionel Hutz combing his hair with a fork?
    ... Bart gets taken away to the "New Bedlam Mental Hospital"?
    ... Eddie the cop burning the Mona Lisa?
    ... Vampire Burns' shadow forms a "cat's cradle" with string and
        plays with a yoyo briefly?
    ... the title of Burns' book is, "Yes, I Am a Vampire" with a
        foreword was by Steve Allen?

Ron Carter:
    ... Bart gets an "F+" grade on his test on the fridge?
    ... the whole first part is a take-off of "The Devil and Daniel
        Webster", and Lionel Hutz refers to Webster's dictionary?
    ... the space alien laughs just like Charles Nelson Reilly?

Don Del Grande:
    ... in Bart's dream, Lisa isn't on the bus?
    ... the chairs with extremely tall backs in the Burns mansion
        include a high chair with tray?
    ... the vampires' fangs extend and retract inside their mouths?
    ... when Marge asks if everybody had washed their necks, Maggie
        raises her hand?
    ... when Bart turns into a bat and leaves Lisa's room, Maggie waves

Juha Terho:
    ... Homer wears glasses at the beginning of "The Devil and Homer
    ... Ned's glasses slip down when he says "It's always the one you
        least suspect"?
    ... the donut plate from Hell floats in mid-air?
    ... Ned's trident changes into a plunger when he pushes Homer
        through the floor?
    ... the only words that are visible in the contract Ned shows during
        the trial are "Homer Simpson" and "doughnut" - probably meaning
        it was a ready form to be filled: "I, ______ pledge my soul for
        the devil for a ______"?

Ricardo Lafaurie:
    ... you can make out "The Devil" when Maggie pops the pacifier into
        Bart's mouth?
    ... in the last frame of the Devil Flanders' disappearance, you can
        see Flanders' normal face?
    ... Blackbeard talks like Captain McAllister?
    ... the air-horn sounds like the horn of the truck in Bart's dream?
    ... the filth on Homer's neck?
    ... Bart does a twitch when he says "blood"?

Voice credits

- Starring
    - Dysfunctional Dan Castellaneta (Homer, Abe, Benedict Arnold, Hans,
    - Joooolie Kavner (Marge)
    - Nasty Nancy Cartwright (Bart, Ralph)
    - Scabby Yeardley Smith (Lisa)
    - Boo!  Boo!  Scare Ya Hank Azaria (Carl, donut room demon, Wiggum)
    - Frighticious Harry Shearer (man at fashion show, Lenny, Flanders,
      Burns, Smithers, Grim Reaper, Nixon, Blackbeard, Skinner, Otto,
      Kang, Kodos)
- Special Guest Voice
    - Phil Hart-on-the Stick Man (Lionel Hutz)
- Also Starring
    - Pamela Hacksaw Hayden (Milhouse, Jimbo)
    - Rancid Russi Taylor (Martin, Uter)
    - Dr. Frankenwelker (animal noises)

Movie (and other) references

    Monty Python {rjc}
    - the associate producer was billed as Colin "Two Sheds" Lewis
  + Rod Serling's "Night Gallery"
    - the hall of paintings
  + Steven Vincent Benet's "The Devil and Daniel Webster" {tc}
    - title of first story
  + "Fantasia", "Night on Bald Mountain" segment
    - the first time Flanders appears, he looks the same as the devil at
      the end of Fantasia
    - when Flanders changes quickly to Chernobog, we hear part of the
      Mussorgsky composition that was played for the demon in Fantasia
    Warner Brothers' 1937 cartoon "Pigs is Pigs"
    - Porky is force-fed apples in a nightmare until he grows very large
    "The Little Mermaid"
    - she combs her hair with a fork, just like Lionel Hutz
  + Twilight Zone, "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet"
    - title and plot of second story
  + "Psycho"
    - Skinner's mother
    Dr. Seuss, "Sam, I Am"
    - the gremlin looks like Sam
  + Bram Stoker's "Dracula"
    - title and much of plot of third story
  + "Nosferatu" {dss}
    - the winding road up to the castle
    - the front door opening by itself
    - Burns materializing on the stairs
    - Burns' clothing
    - Burns' shadow having a life of its own.  Plus it had those
      horrifying pointy fingers (one of Nosferatu's most unsettling
      features).  The spookiness of the vampire's shadow was one of the
      best elements of the film.
    - the basement, and even the way the coffins were arranged there
  + "The Three Stooges"
    - Bart's impressions of Shemp and Curly
  + "Salem's Lot"/"The Lost Boys"
    - Bart floating outside the window
    - "It's cool to be a vampire"
  + "Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown"
    - Milhouse playing the piano, like Schroeder
    - SLH dancing on the piano, like Snoopy
    - singing "Hark, the Herald Angels Sing"
    - dust cloud gathering around Homer, like Pig Pen
  + "The Addams Family"
    - closing music has the theme song mixed in

Previous episode references

- [7G04] Burns messes up Bart's name {rl}
- [7G07], [8F03] Chief Wiggum holds a press conference {jt}
- [7F04], [8F02], [8F11], [9F04] The aliens in the spaceship
- [7F10] Bart meets the devil {jt}
- [7F14] "Son of a bitch!"  {jt}
- [7F24] The New Bedlam Mental Hospital
- [8F04] Otto plans to escape to Mexico {rl}
- [8F09] Germans in Springfield {jt}
- [8F15] Milhouse gets a wedgie {rl}
- [8F15], [9F19] Steve Allen is referenced {rl}
- [8F21] Skinner being on the school bus {jt}
- [8F22] Milhouse gets a wet willie {rl}
- [8F22] Bart says, "Let's go whip donuts at old people", and Carl and
  Lenny have done just that
- [8F22] Homer forgetting words ("Building thingy" cf. "Metal dealy you
  use to dig food") {jt}
- [9F03] Homer: "Grampa, you and your stories."  (cf. Lisa) {rl}
- [9F13] Milhouse: "This cape is giving me a rash" (cf. Abe: "This cape
  is giving me a rash")
- [9F14] Skinner's Bates syndrome {jt}
- [9F15] The Three Stooges {jt}
- [9F16] A plunger on Homer's head {jt}
- [9F18] Homer gets an air-horn
- [1F02] "I'm smarter than the devil!"  (cf. "I am so smart!")  {jt}
- [SC#3] Willy shoots his mule {rl}

Freeze frame fun

- The paintings in the gallery, part one:
    - Marge shadow on wall (in the style of de Chirico)
    - Homer (Van Gogh's self portrait)
    - Maggie with melted pacifiers (Dali's "Persistence of Memory")
    - Lisa playing sax (Picasso's "Three Musicians")
    - Homer chasing Bart (Escher's "Ascending and Descending")
    - Lisa (Munch's "The Scream")
- Leftovers in fridge:
    - turkey
    - half a sub sandwich
    - hot dogs
    - jello
- Signs around leftover donut: {rc}
    - Stop!
    - Don't Touch
    - Keep Away!
    - Don't Eat!
    - Daddy's Soul Donut
- The paintings in the gallery, part two:
    - Homer with list, "Duff Chips Pork" (David's "Death of Marat Sade")
    - Lisa (Picasso's "Three Musicians")
    - Bart behind an apple (Magritte's self-portrait, "The Son of Man")
    - that stupid "Dogs Playing Poker" picture

Animation, continuity, and other goofs

Homer and Marge weren't married in Springfield (8F10), but the picture
at the hospital has a young Rev. Lovejoy and Dr. Hibbert in it.  {ddg}.

Before Milhouse goes to sit with Uter, the latter is sitting in the
aisle seat.  In the next shot, Uter is sitting in the window seat.

When the gremlin is unscrewing the lugs nuts on the wheel, (1) The lugs
are not in the center of the wheel, so the gremlin's hand and arm should
jerk around when unscrewing the lug, (2) he removes them from the left
(driver's) side of the bus which would serve to *tighten* the lug
instead of loosen it.  {gtm}

Lisa refers to vampires as "the walking undead", yet mummies are just as
much "walking undead" (the walking ones, anyway) as vampires.  {ddg}

Despite Burns' fangs being well separated, the bite marks are next to
each other on Bart's neck.  {ddg}


Ron Carter: It averages out to an B+ (an A, a B, and another A) I think.
    In the opening, the gravestones were off (not OFF), too serious.
    Liked the "Night Gallery" theme a lot; took long enough.  The
    Devil..." was superb, wish they had done more with the jury, but
    with time constraints.  Note the Devil (aka Flanders) moving his
    tail in the kitchen scene.  Nice.  "Terror..." was the weakest, but
    some nice touches here and there.  "Bart Simpson's..." was
    beautiful.  Cuts were expert.  Funny stuff.  The ending was
    hilarious, unexpected, and great since I was hoping to have another
    "Peanuts" opening.

Joseph Reeves: Wow!  I think this is one of the best episodes
    (Hallowe'en, at least)!  Not as good as the second, but still, quite
    good.  The most pleasing aspect of this show is that some of the
    stories were actually a little scary.  I mean I wasn't like crying
    from fear, but the Dracula and 5 1/2 feet sections were so well done
    that there was a lot of tension and fear.  Besides, it's about time
    Lisa got really involved in one of the episodes!

Raymond Chen: This year's Hallowe'en episode was definitely an
    improvement over last year's.  But you just can't top Treehouse 1.
    The Original Space Aliens.  Wild directorial decisions.  Vortices
    into another dimension.  And, of course, the pen of author and
    troubled soul Edgar Allen Poe.

Andrew Ross: I think they must spend the whole year planning the annual
    Halloween show.  It never fails!  Wonderful, most wonderful!  The
    funny parts, so you know what you should have laughed at: Best part:
    NO RAKES!  [...] Everything else was funny too.  Truly a great

Scott Mankey: I thought this was a great episode and enjoyed it very
    much.  I give it an "A".  Lots of great lines like: "Kill my boss?
    Do I dare live out the American dream?"  And after Homer can't pull
    the "Super Fun Happy Slide" handle, he tries to console himself with
    "I guess killing will be fun enough."

Joey Berner: Well, this one was far better than last year.  The "Devil"
    episode had some GREAT gags (Homer eating his donut head - who in
    the hell came up with that?!), the "Nightmare" was a nice Twilight
    Zone spoof even though I thought it was the weakest of the three (it
    was still very well done) and the "Dracula" one was classic.  All in
    all, the animation in this one has been the best so far this season.
    Some great lines, fantastic animation and a nice return to the
    Simpsons we know and love....

Juha Terho: Incredible.  The animation was best ever, the stories were
    great, so was the pacing, beautiful gags, and above all, the
    atmosphere was tremendous.  This is even better than the first
    Halloween Special, and it's definitely one of the three episodes
    that get an A+ from me.  I thought every story in here was worth an

Yours truly: Outstanding episode.  Probably one of my new all-time
    favorites.  Plots were awesome, and the animation was outrageously
    excellent: lots of thunder and lightning, shadows, smooth changes of
    vampires to bats, etc.  And humorous references to previous
    episodes: aliens in spaceship, whipping donuts at old people, New
    Bedlam Mental Hospital, etc.  Yep, I give it an A+.

Comments and other observations

The "Ironic Punishments" room in hell

Alan Asper says, "The whole `ironic punishments' thing is based on
    Dante's `Inferno', in which sinners go to hell to face punishments
    analogous to what they did in Life.  For example, adulterers are
    condemned to spend eternity in a whirlwind because in Life they were
    swept away by passion (so to speak).  I forget what Circle of Hell
    the doughnut machine is in, however..."

Tom Collins notes that this room is also based on Jimmy Halto's long-
    running comic "Halto's Inferno."  Furthermore, the title of the
    Warner Brothers' cartoon to which this scene refers, "Pigs is Pigs",
    "is from a classic humorous story by Ellis Parker Butler.  It's even
    been filmed under the same name."

Who is James Coco?

Homer's tormentor in hell says, "James Coco went mad in fifteen
    minutes!"  Steve Portigal explains, "James Coco was an (at times)
    respected actor, who also was famous for his weight, and perhaps
    appetite.  He was in lots of films, including a Don Quixote version.
    The last things I remember him doing was playing the lovable
    criminal uncle of Tony Micelli on `Who's the Boss?'  When he died,
    they had a sad maudlin episode about how much they loved him."

The jurors in "The Devil and Daniel Webster"

Comparing the jurors in the original versus that in the Simpsons, Andrew
    Ross comments, "Arnold and Blackbeard were in the original.  None of
    the others had yet achieved notoriety in Daniel Webster's day (pre-
    civil war, don't you know).  The rest of Benet's jury of the damned
    included such relatively obscure people as Simon Girty, a renegade
    who hunted people, Governor Dale, a notorious Draconian who broke
    men on the wheel, and Gallatin the scalp hunter.  The Judge was
    Justice Hathorne, of Salem witch trials fame.  I doubt these names
    would mean much to the average TV viewer, so it's just as well OFF
    substituted some more modern villains."

Homer's detachable head

Don Del Grande writes, "I'm not sure about this one...but according to
    an article in TV GUIDE, Matt Groening said there was supposed to be
    a scene in TDAHS where the demons bowl using Homer's head; this may
    have been written into the spot just before the trial begins and
    Homer appears in the cage with his head detached."

The 1976 Philadelphia Flyers

Michael Welch says, "The Philadelphia Flyers of the 1970's were probably
    the most notoriously dirty (physical, if you're a Philly fan) teams
    in NHL history."  Carl Frank adds, "They were nicknamed `The Broad
    Street Bullies' and they were assessed (as a team) what I recall to
    be a record number of penalty minutes over the course of the season.
    They did quite well that year, but the complaint was that it was
    less by way of talent and more of intimidation.  The fact that they
    were the damned was *great*."

Exploding objects

Juha Terho lists the following previous explosions:

    - [8F15] The punchbuggy hits a milk truck
    - [9F02] A capsule of "The Paralyzer" carnival machine hits
      Springfield Elementary
    - [9F09] Hans Moleman crashes down a hill with the birthplace of
      Edgar Allan Poe
    - [9F14] Chief Wiggum hits a tree as "Giant Beer"

Ren and Stimpy reference?

Some people theorize that Uter, the foreign exchange student, and his
    candies were a reference to "Ren and Stimpy".  Uter looks like Ren
    Hoek's cousin, Sven; the close-ups on the candy were reminiscent of
    R&S close-ups; and Matt Groening is known to be a big fan of Ren and

Finally, what a rear admiral really is!

James Cherry explains:  OK, so everyone was asking what the hell a rear
    admiral was.  Bill Oakley, who _wrote_ that part of the script with
    Josh Weinstein, emailed me the definitive answer as to what a rear
    admiral is.

    >Regarding "Rear Admiral,"  I think the answer is probably as
    >disappointing as you feared it might be:  it doesn't exist.  Here is
    >the actual first draft script excerpt from the Halloween show:
    >        BART
    >Milhouse.  Milhouse, wake up.  Quick, look out the window.
    >        MILHOUSE
    >No way, Bart.  If I lean over and put my face against the window,
    >you're gonna smash it, or maybe pinch my butt real hard.
    >This was the first draft.  In re-writing it, the writers wanted to go
    >for something a little funnier, something that would sound like it was
    >from the family of "flying wedgie," "purple nurple," etc.  Someone, I
    >do not remember who, said "Rear Admiral."  It sounds real, having the
    >word "rear" in it, but it was manufactured to sound real.  As far as we
    >know, it doesn't really exist.

The "Vengelerstrasse Bar"

Tom Collins says that "Vengelerstrasse" translates into English as
    "Butterfinger", which is, of course, humorous considering that the
    Simpsons endorse this particular brand of candy bar.  Apparently
    Matt Groening loves them, which is why he let the Simpsons endorse

More running gags

Andrew Ross lists the following running gags:

    - Wet pants on Halloween (compare Bart's line, "I hope this is
      sweat" with last year's Bart: "This one will scare you so much
      you'll wet your pants!"  Abe: "Too late.")
    - Nelson's laugh (unexpected and hilarious)
    - The demon running the conveyor belt in Hell is one of the Happy
      Little Elves.  I always thought there was something sinister about
    - Grandpa's pathos
    - The exploding car (a reference to itself; Hans comes to a complete
      stop inches away from the tree, *then* blows up gratuitously!)
    - Krusty's senseless mercantilism (the trading cards)
    - Homer's appetite (he can fit four donuts at a time into his
    - Burns on the monitor, asking who *is* that man, Smithers.  Only
      this time, he's not asking`about Homer.

Quotes and Scene Summary

[Syndication cuts are marked in curly braces "{}" and are courtesy of
Ricardo Lafaurie and Frederic Briere.]

Bart strolls through a gallery of paintings.

 Bart: Paintings: lifeless images rendered in colorful goop.  But at
       night, they take on a life of their own.  They become portals to
       hell, so scary and horrible and gruesome that --
Marge: Bart!  You should warn people this episode is very frightening.
       And maybe they'd rather listen to that old "War of the Worlds"
       broadcast on NPR, hmm?
 Bart: Yes, mother.
-- There's a good boy, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Marge gives Maggie to Bart so that she can buy some earrings at the gift

The subject of our first painting tonight is the most foul, evil,
vicious, diabolical beast to stalk the earth.  Of course I refer to...
 [Maggie stuffs her pacifier in Bart's mouth]
...mm mm-mmm!
 [Bart spits it out]
...the devil!
-- Bart, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The title "The Devil and Homer Simpson" appears in front of the
painting, which depicts Satan's head.

The scene changes to a runway.  The announcer tells of the next item in
their fall catalogue, "A vision in raspberry cream."  A model's shapely
legs make their way down the runway.  At the end, we see Homer looking
up delightedly at the donut atop the legs: "Pure genius!"  He drools.

But alas, it was all a dream.  Homer awakes to find himself at the power
plant in front of a box of donuts.  "And now to make the leap from
dreams to reality," he says, hungrily opening the box.  But the box is
empty, devoid of donuts!

Lenny: Sorry, Homer.  While you were daydreaming we ate all the donuts.
 Carl: Well, there were a few left, but we chucked them at an old man
       for kicks.
        [Shot of Abe running with a donut stuck to his head]
  Abe: Damn buzzards!  I ain't dead yet.
-- Knockin' on heaven's door, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Homer panics a little, running back to his work station.  "Stay calm,"
he reassures himself, "remember your training."  He reaches for the
"Emergency Procedures" manual, and opens it up.  A square has been cut
out of most of the pages -- a square big enough to hold a solitary
donut.  But Homer finds no donut; all that's left is a piece of paper.
Homer reads it.

"Dear Homer, I. O. U. one emergency donut.  Signed, Homer."
Bastard!  He's always one step ahead.
-- Homer, not realizing his own foresight, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

He contemptuously tears the note to shreds, and rues his misfortune.

   Homer: [ruefully] I'd sell my soul for a donut.
           [The devil appears, looking like Flanders]
Flanders: Heh heh, that can be arranged.
   Homer: What -- Flanders!  You're the devil?
Flanders: Ho ho, it's always the one you least suspect.
-- All those wasted years of church, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Flanders wants to ensure Homer means what he said.

Flanders: Many people offer to sell their souls without reflecting on
          the grave ramifications --
   Homer: [impatiently] _Do_ you have a donut or not?
Flanders: Comin' up.  Just sign here.  Careful, hot pen!
-- Desperation calls for drastic measures, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Homer signs away his soul, being careful not to burn himself on the
flaming pen.  Burns and Smithers watch the transaction.

   Burns: Hmm...who's that goat-legged fellow?  I like the cut of his
Smithers: Er, Prince of Darkness, sir.  He's your eleven o'clock.
-- The next installment on the billion, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The devil makes it so!  A whinnying apparition with a "Hell's Kitchen"
apron procures a single donut for Mr. Simpson.

Flanders: Now remember, the instant you finish it, I own your soul for
   Homer: [through a full mouth] Hey, wait: if I don't finish this last
          bite, you don't get my soul, do you?
Flanders: Well, technically, no, but --
   Homer: [gloating] I'm smarter than the devil!
-- I know you are but what am I?, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Flanders doesn't like Homer's gloating, and he turns into a fearsome
beast, promising to see Homer in hell yet.  He disappears back into the
ground in a ball of flame, but Homer's not worried.  "Not likely," he
giggles, putting the last little piece in his shirt pocket.

That night, Homer wanders out of bed half-asleep, looking for something
to eat.  He opens the fridge and looks at all the leftovers, but his
eyes are drawn to the little piece of donut despite all the signs
warning him he's not supposed to eat it.  He tosses it into his mouth.
"Mmm, forbidden donut."

The minute he swallows it, the devil appears.  "Well, well: finishing
something?"  A hole of fire appears in the kitchen floor, and Homer is
drawn towards it.  He grabs onto the fridge door, clinging desperately
to it as the suction becomes more powerful.  Marge comes in to see what
the commotion is about, and her hair gets sucked towards the peephole to

Homer's not strong enough, and he gets drawn in.  But he gets stuck
halfway.  "Your wide behind won't save you this time!" warns the devil.
Bart and Lisa walk in as well, and the devil says nonchalantly, "Hey
Bart."  Lisa sees what's about to happen.

    Lisa: Wait!  Doesn't my father have the right to a fair trial?
Flanders: Oh, you Americans with your due process and fair trials.  This
          is always so much easier in Mexico.
-- Only until NAFTA comes in, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

But the devil acquiesces to Lisa's wishes.  He promises that the trial
will be at the stroke of midnight, and that meanwhile Homer must spend
the day in hell.  His trident turns into a plunger and he forces Homer's
mass down through the floor.  Homer himself plunges down into the fiery

He lands at the bottom on a conveyer belt.  "That wasn't so bad," he
sighs, but he gets chopped up into little pieces with a machette by a
demon of some sort.  His mouth, left ear, and both shoes are put in the
"Hot Dog Meat" bin.

[From 3F31, we know the following scene was cut for the original airing
of this show.  Transcription by Frederic Briere.]

A demon selects Homer's head from several and grips it.  He rolls it
down an alley as Homer's head screams, until it hits the spiked pins and
breaks open, revealing a note: "IOU one brain, signed God".

Back at home, Marge looks at the phone book.

Marge: [looking at phone book] Lawyers, lawyers, lawyers...oh!  Lionel
       Hutz.  "Cases won in 30 minutes or your pizza's free."  Hmm.
 Bart: I'd sell my soul for a formula one racing car.
        [Satan Ned appears with a race car]
  Ned: Heh heh heh, that can be arranged.
 Bart: Changed my mind.  Sorry.
        [Ned vanishes] Cool!
Marge: Bart!  Stop pestering Satan.
-- "Treehouse of Horror IV"

[End of cut scene.]

In the room with a "Hell Labs: Ironic Punishments Division" sign on the
door, Homer is strapped into a chair with mountains of donuts all
around.  "So, you like donuts, eh?" his keeper queries.  "Uh huh," Homer
answers uncertainly.  "Well, have all the donuts in the world!" his
keeper ripostes, and a metallic machine monstrosity starts cramming
donuts towards Homer's mouth by fours.  Eagerly he devours them.  {Three
seconds' worth of shots of Homer eating them are cut in syndication.}

Much later, the machine still works overtime, and Homer has become a
grotesque blob, but his relentless masticatory pace hasn't slowed.
There are almost no donuts left in the room, and Homer's keeper is
confused.  "I don't understand it.  James Coco went mad in fifteen

That night, in the Simpson living room, Homer appears through the floor
in a cage where the bars are made of fire.  Lionel Hutz walks in combing
his hair with a fork.

Marge: Homer!  Are you all right?
Homer: [meekly] No.
 Hutz: Mr. Simpson, don't you worry.  I watched Matlock in a bar last
       night.  The sound wasn't on, but I think I got the gist of it.
-- He learns fast, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

A fiery pentagram burns its way into the floor, and up through it the
Grim Reaper appears on the bench.  He raps his gavel.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye.  The Court of Infernal Affairs is now in session.
-- The Grim Reaper speaks, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lionel Hutz opens the proceedings.

    Hutz: First some ground rules.  Number one, we get bathroom breaks
          every half-hour.
Flanders: Agreed.  Number two, the jury will be chosen by me.
    Hutz: Agreed.  [realizing] No, wait --
Flanders: Silence!
-- You've been told, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The devil introduces the members of the jury.

Flanders: I give you the Jury of the Damned!  Benedict Arnold, Lizzie
          Borden, Richard Nixon --
   Nixon: But I'm not dead yet!  In fact, I just wrote an article for
Flanders: Hey, listen: I did a favor for you!
   Nixon: [humbly] Yes, master.
-- Evil Republicans!, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The devil continues introducing the jury.

John Wilkes Booth, Blackbeard the Pirate, John Dillinger, and the
starting line of the 1976 Philadelphia Flyers!
-- Satan introduces the jury, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Marge tries to find seats for everyone.  Lizzie Borden is forced to sit
on Lisa's ergonomic chair, but she can't quite figure it out.
Blackbeard is even less fortunate.

     Marge: [next to the high chair] I'm sorry, Mr. Blackbeard.  We're
            low on chairs, and this is the last one.
Blackbeard: Arr!  This chair be high, says I.
-- A tautology, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The devil begins to make his case against Homer.

I hold here a contract between myself and one Homer Simpson pledging me
his soul for a donut -- which I delivered!  And it was scrump-diddley-
-- The Satan/Flanders beast, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Flanders: I simply ask for what is mine!
           [He sits down smugly]
    Hutz: [cocky] That was a right-pretty speech, sir.  But I ask you,
          what is a contract?  Webster's defines it as "an agreement
          under the law which is unbreakable."  [emphasizing] Which is
           [The jury look at him]
          Excuse me, I must use the restroom.
-- An expert law-talking guy, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Hutz runs up to the bathroom and slams the door.  An hour later, he
still hasn't returned.  Marge goes up to look for him, but she's greeted
by the curtains blowing in front of the open window.

So the Reaper feels he has no choice but to sentence Homer to an
eternity.  But Marge runs in with a photo of Homer and her at her
wedding.  It's a picture of Homer choking in an emergency room, and
Marge explains that Homer ate the entire wedding cake by himself before
the wedding.  The jury find this roundly amusing.  But she hastily tells
them, "Read the back!"

Blackbeard: {[looking at the photo] Arr, 'tis some kind of treasure
    Arnold: {You idiot!  You can't read.}
Blackbeard: {Aye, 'tis true.  My debauchery was my way of compensatin'!}
-- No brain cells left, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Arnold reads, "Dear Marge: you have given me your hand in marriage.  All
I can give you in return is my...soul, which I pledge to you forever."
Lizzie announces, "We've heard enough.  Your Honor, we find that Homer
Simpson's soul is legally the property of Marge Simpson and not of the
devil."  The devil is despondent, but Bart and Lisa are elated.  The
judge and jury disappear in a puff.

[Another 3F31-revealed scene goes here, courtesy of Frederic Briere.]

 Hutz: [walking around a corner] Well, I didn't win.  Here's your pizza.
Marge: But we _did_ win!
 Hutz: That's OK: the box is empty.
-- His end of the deal, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

[End of cut scene.]

Flanders: All right, Simpson.  You get your soul back.  [threateningly]
          But let that ill-gotten donut be forever on your head!
           [Next day at breakfast]
   Homer: [pulling pastry from his head and eating it]
   Marge: Homer, stop picking at it!
   Homer: Oh, but I'm so sweet and tasty.
-- And covered with sprinkles, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

 Homer: Well, time to go to work.
  Lisa: Dad, I wouldn't go outside if I were you.
         [Chief Wiggum and a lot of cops stand on the street outside]
Wiggum: Don't worry, boys.  He's gotta come out of there some time.
-- Patience is a virtue, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

[End of Act One.  Time: 7:56]

Back in the gallery, Bart narrates the second spooky story.

Bart: The next exhibit in out ghoulish gallery is entitled..."The School
      Bus"?  [realizing] Oh, they must mean "The Ghoooul Bus."
Lisa: [reads the painting] Nope, says right there: "School Bus".
Bart: [with mock enthusiasm] Well, there's nothing scarier than having
      to go to school.  Ha ha!  [groans]
-- Lame introductions, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The title, "Terror at 5 and a half feet" appears on the screen, and
behind it, the school bus.  On board, Bart sits next to Milhouse.

Milhouse: Hey Bart, look.  Krusty trading cards.  The long-awaited
          "Eight Series".
    Bart: [reading the cards] "Krusty visits relatives in Annapolis,
          Maryland.  Krusty poses for trading card photo."
Milhouse: Hmm...he seems to be running a little low on ideas.
    Bart: Well, at least you got the gum.
Milhouse: [biting it] Ow!  I cut my cheek.
-- Only $1.49 a pack, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Suddenly, a tire falls off the bus!  Otto tries in vain to control the
swerving vehicle, but he can't help veering into the path of an oncoming
transport truck.  Just before the inevitable crash, Bart wakes up
screaming.  Feeling his damp blankets, he says, "I hope this is sweat."

He walks into the kitchen for breakfast.

Lisa: Bart, what's wrong?
Bart: [in a monotone] I just had a vision of my own horrible fiery
Lisa: [expectantly] And?
-- That's it?, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Marge realizes that Bart has had a nightmare, and she tries to reassure
him.  But an air-horn blast sounding suspiciously like that of the
transport truck makes Bart scream.  Homer walks in, proudly displaying
his air-horn and life jackets which he picked out of some guy's boat
down at the marina.  He blows the horn one more time, and Bart's nerves
are jarred.

It's a rainy day as Bart and Lisa board the school bus.  Bart is
surprised to see Principal Skinner sitting on the bus.

Hello, Simpson.  I'm riding the bus today because Mother hid my car keys
to punish me for talking to a woman on the phone.  She was right to do
-- Seymour "Norman" Skinner, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa gets the attention of everyone on the bus.

  Lisa: Excuse me.  Bart's a little upset this morning, so could
        everyone please be extra-nice to him?
         [Everyone laughs]
 Jimbo: Hey, where's your diaper, baby?  [pulls down Bart's pants]
Martin: Thank goodness he's drawn attention away from my shirt.  ["Wang
-- Small mercies, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Bart sits next to Milhouse, rubbing his throat dejectedly.  He glances
out the window and sees a gremlin clawing its way up the side of the
bus.  It sees him looking at it, and it grins, its claws digging furrows
in the side of the bus.  Bart grabs Milhouse.

    Bart: Milhouse...Milhouse, wake up, quick!  Look out the window.
Milhouse: No way, Bart.  If I lean over, I leave myself open to wedgies,
          wet willies, or even the dreaded rear-admiral!
-- Covering his ass, so to speak, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Bart pushes Milhouse out of the way and approaches Otto.  He implores
Otto to do something about the Gremlin on the side of the bus.  Otto
glances out and sees Hans driving an AMC Gremlin.  "No problemo, Bart-
dude, I'll get rid of him," he says, ramming Hans mercilessly.  Hans
begins to skid out of control, and he whines, "Oh no, I just made my
last payment."  He drives off the road and stops the vehicle just before
it hits a tree, but it explodes nonetheless.

Bart's fears still aren't assuaged.  He looks out the window again, and
sees the gremlin on the back of the bus.  It pulls a metal cap off
something and begins removing spaghetti-strands of wire from under the
bus' side-paneling.  Bart yells, "Everybody, there's a monster on the
side of the bus!"  Everyone screams and runs over to look.

   Jimbo: Hey, there's no monster.
   Ralph: You're deceptive.
    Otto: I don't see anything.
Milhouse: Hey!  Who's driving the bus?
    Otto: Ooh, una momento, por favor.
-- Spanish 101, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

{The aliens from a previous Hallowe'en special watch from space,
scoffing at the foolish Earthlings who are frightened of a creature that
does not exist.  They laugh contemptuously, but stop when they notice a
gremlin on the side of their ship.}

Bart stares worriedly out the window.  The gremlin jumps from under the
bus, and makes the finger-across-throat gesture at Bart.

Skinner: Now I've gotten word that a child is using his imagination...
         and I've come to put a stop to it!
   Bart: [desperate] No, no, it's true, there's a monster on the bus!
Skinner: The only monster on this bus is a lack of proper respect for
         the rules.
-- Seymour's adages, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The principal pulls the shade down over the window so Bart won't have to
worry about it any more.  Bart is still nervous, however, and he tries
to avoid peeking under the blind.  Eventually, he can resist no longer,
and he pulls it up.  He screams as Groundskeeper Willy's face appears at
the window.  It seems Willy, too, must ride the bus.

Me mule wouldn't work in the mud.  [mournfully] So I had to put
seventeen bullets in 'er!
-- Willy, problem-solver, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Bart is becoming desperate.

    Bart: [with forced happiness] You believe me, don't you?  You're my
          friend who believes me: sweet, trustworthy Milhouse.
Milhouse: Actually, Bart, you're kinda creeping me out.  Uh, I think I'm
          gonna go sit with that foreign exchange student.
           [He does so]
    Uter: Ah, guten tag!  Would you care for a bite of my
          Vengelerstrasse bar?  I also have a bag of marzipan Joy Joys.
-- Joy Joys Mit Iodine, even, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Bart hears a banging on the wheel hub under his feet.  He looks out the
window and the gremlin jumps out from under the bus.  It reaches towards
the lug-nuts that hold the wheel on.  Its claws make sparks against the
metal of the spinning tire, and it manages to remove one of the nuts.
After sniffing it disdainfully, it tosses it aside.

 Bart: The gremlin's taking off the wheel.  Stop the bus or we're all
       gonna die!
        [Seymour grabs him in a headlock]
Willy: Take me bridle and lash his hands to the seat.
-- A just punishment, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Skinner has decided to seat Uter next to Bart.  Uter offers Bart another
lick of his flavor wax, and Bart accepts the offer, cringing.  Bart
suggests that Uter loosen the ropes that bind him, and he gladly
complies: "Ja, das ist gut."

Bart looks out the window again to see the gremlin continuing to remove
the nuts from the wheel.  He looks below his seat and sees a box of
flares, but the four flares have been removed.  Jimbo is the culprit
this time: he's lit them and put two of them in Martin's pants.  Bart
goes over and grabs one without Martin noticing, but he inadvertently
knocks the other one loose.  So he puts it back.

He walks over to the window and pulls the "Emergency Release" lever, but
the pressure difference between the air inside and outside the bus tries
to suck Bart and everyone else out of the bus.  He manages to keep his
grip nonetheless.  He brandishes the flare, and the gremlin notices.
Just then, Homer drives by and blares his air-horn, greeting Bart with a
cheerful "Hey, boy."

The gremlin, sensing its plans are about to be thwarted, tries to remove
the lug-nuts faster.  Skinner and Willy are trying to pull Bart's body
back inside the bus.

Skinner: Pull, Willy, pull!
  Willy: I'm doing all the pulling, you blouse-wearing poodle walker!
-- Fitting epithets, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The grown men succeed in pulling our hero back inside the bus.  As they
do so, Bart drops the lit flare and it bounces down the side of the bus.
Fortunately, it hits the gremlin and its body catches on fire.  It gapes
and loses its grip on the bus, falling off and bouncing down the road in
a little ball of flame.  Flanders happens to be driving behind it and it
smacks into his windshield.  Aghast, he skids to a halt and runs back to
its smoking body.

"Oh dear Lord," he exclaims, looking at its inert form, "it's some sort
of hideous monster."  He wraps it up in his jacket and holds it to him.
An angry claw slashes out, and Ned smiles.  "Aw, isn't that cute.  He's
trying to claw my eyes out!"  He hugs it.

The bus arrives safely at Springfield Elementary.  Everyone stands
outside the bus, staring at the tears in the metal made by the gremlin's
claws.  Skinner taps the lug-nut remaining in the back tire, and it
falls out, taking the wheel off with it.  "Gadzooks!"  Bart is being led
away on a stretcher, wearing a straight-jacket.

   Bart: Look at the bus.  I was right, I tell you, I was right!
Skinner: [sternly] Right or wrong, your behavior was still disruptive,
         young man!  Perhaps spending the remainder of your life in a
         madhouse will teach you some manners.
 Nelson: Ha, ha!
-- No punishment is too severe, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The orderly slams the door and heads off to the New Bedlam Mental
Hospital with the siren blaring.  Bart starts to relax: "At least now I
can get some rest."  But the gremlin appears at the back window and taps
on the glass.  It lifts Flanders' decapitated head up by the hair and
the head intones, "Heidily-ho, Bart!"  Bart screams.

[End of Act Two.  Time: 14:16]

Back in the gallery once again...

 Bart: We come now to the final and most terrifying painting of the
       evening.  To even gaze upon it is [dramatically] to go mad.
Homer: [looking at it] Aah!  They're dogs...and they're playing poker!
-- At least they're not playing pool, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

We had a story to go with this painting, but it was far too intense.  So
we just threw something together with vampires.  Enjoy!
-- Bart, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

It is "Bart Simpson's Dracula".  The family watch Kent Brockman deliver
the news on TV.

Brockman: Another local peasant has been found dead -- drained of his
          blood with two teeth marks on his throat.  This black cape was
          found on the scene.
           [Cape has "DRACULA" written on it]
          Police are baffled.
  Wiggum: We think we're dealing with a supernatural being, most likely
          a mummy.  As a precaution, I've ordered the Egyptian wing of
          the Springfield museum destroyed.
-- Taking no chances, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

A brief camera pan shows the police officers smashing mummy cases and
burning things.  But Lisa sees that they've erred.

 Lisa: No, no, they're wrong!  The creature they seek is the walking
       undead!  Nosferatu!  Das Wampyr!
        [Family looks blankly]
        [exasperated] A vampire!
Homer: Heh, heh.  Lisa, vampires are make-believe, just like elves,
       gremlins, and eskimos.
-- That's "inuit" to you, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Brockman: In a completely unrelated story, Montgomery Burns has just
          closed a deal to buy the Springfield Blood Bank.
   Burns: [blood on his cheek] Ooh, I'm very excited about this deal.
          We --
           [notices the blood, wipes it off and eats it]
          Oh, precious blood.
   Homer: Mmm, business deal.
-- Homer the CEO, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

In the next scene, the Simpsons are driving along a dark road with dead
trees lining the sides, under a moon in a cloudy evening sky.

Homer: It sure was nice of Mr. Burns to invite us to a midnight dinner
       at his country house in...
 Lisa: Aw, there's something fishy about this whole setup.
Marge: Lisa, stop being so suspicious.  Did everyone wash their necks
       like Mr. Burns asked?
-- To clean off the bubonic plague, no doubt, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

As they drive along the narrow road to the castle, Mr. Burns' head
appears in the sky, a wavering ghostly image against the full moon.
When they arrive at the house, Homer rings the doorbell.

   Burns: [over the intercom] Welcome, come in.  Ah, fresh victims for
          my ever-growing army of the undead --
Smithers: Sir, you have to let go of that button.
   Burns: Well, son of a bitch --
-- Vampires and technology don't mix, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The door creaks open, and the family walk in to the dark stone entrance
hall.  Mr. Burns appears in a puff of smoke on some nearby stairs.

   Burns: Well, if it isn't my good friends, the, er --
Smithers: Simpson family, master.
   Burns: Simpson, eh?  Excellent.
-- The running gag continueth, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa, the perceptive one, has noticed Mr. Burns' shadow seems to act
independently of his body, and she becomes suspicious.

 Lisa: [sotto voce] Dad, do you notice anything strange?
Homer: [sotto voce] Yeah, his hairdo looks so queer --
Burns: I heard that!
Homer: [defensively] It was the boy!
-- Bart the scapegoat, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Mr. Burns seats his guests at one end of a long table while he takes the
other end.

Homer: Ooh, punch!
 Lisa: [sniffs it] Ew!  Dad, this is blood!
Homer: Correction -- _free_ blood.
-- Always lookin' for ways to save, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa is becoming more certain something's terribly wrong.  She
"accidentally" spills blood on herself, then claiming she and Bart have
to go wash up.  When Bart begins to protest, she smears blood on his
face and drags him along.

Bart is not convinced that Mr. Burns is a vampire.  "And even if he was,
we're not going to stumble on his secret hiding place."  But as he says
this, he presses down on a stone-arm torch holder.  A wall slides back,
revealing the secret location of the washer and dryer.

Lisa sees reason.  "You're probably right.  Let's just go back to...
(gasp)" In ghostly red neon lettering, she sees "TO SECRET VAMPIRE ROOM"
on the wall, and below that, in green, "NO GARLIC" flashes.

Bart and Lisa walk down the stairs into a room full of coffins.

Lisa: [motioning to the coffins] Satisfied?
Bart: Big deal.  It's no different from the basement in Grandpa's rest
-- _Those_ coffins are empty, though, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa notices a tome resting on a stand, and she runs over to read the
title: "Yes, I Am a Vampire, by Monty Burns.  Foreword by Steve Allen."
As she opens the book, the lids of the coffins begin to open.  Bart
tries to get Lisa's attention.

Bart: [strangled] Shee, ba-ba-ba-ba --
Lisa: Please, Bart, I've seen your stupid Shemp.
Bart: Gna-gna-gna-gna --
Lisa: Yeah, I've seen your Curly too!
-- Bart tries to warn Lisa of the walking undead, "Treehouse of Horror

A greenish hand rakes its claws along the page of the book she's
reading, and she screams in fright.  The two children run frantically up
the spiral staircase.  On the way up, Bart notices a "SUPER FUN HAPPY
SLIDE" lever protruding from the wall, and he pulls it, figuring he
won't be back any time soon.  The stairs change to a slippery stone
ramp, and Bart begins his descent.  At first, he shouts "Whee!", but as
he nears the bottom, his joy turns to fear as the arms of the undead
reach for him.

He is grabbed by an undead woman in a purple dress.  Before she can do
anything, a bat flies into the room.  It turns into Mr. Burns, who grins
evilly at Bart.  "Well, if it isn't little...uh, boy!" he cackles with

Lisa runs back into the dining room.

 Lisa: [breathlessly] Mom, Dad: Mr. Burns is a vampire, and he has Bart!
Burns: Why, Bart is right here.
 Bart: [droning] Hello, Mother.  Hello, Father.  I missed you during my
       uneventful absence.
Homer: Oh, Lisa, you and your stories.
       "Bart is a vampire."
       "Beer kills brain cells."
       Now let's go back to that...building...thingy, where our beds and
-- The king of eloquence, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Back home, Lisa tosses and turns in her bed, unable to sleep.  When she
hears a scraping noise at her window, she opens the curtains to discover
that Bart is floating mysteriously outside.  She yells.

    Bart: Come join us, Lisa.  It's so cool: you get to stay up all
          night drinking blood.
Milhouse: And if you say you're a vampire, you get a free small soda at
          the movies.
-- No "cons" to vampirehood, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa refuses adamantly, but Bart informs her she has no choice,
whereupon he crashes through the window.  She screams, and Bart exposes
her neck, his fangs growing.  Fortunately, Homer rushes into the room.

Homer: Bart!  How many times have I told you not to bite your sis --
       [gasps] Wait a minute!  You _are_ a vampire!
  Abe: Quick!  We have to kill the boy!  [holds a stake and mallet]
Marge: How do you know he's a vampire?
  Abe: He's a vampire?  Aah!  [runs away]
-- A true test of mettle, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

To escape, Bart turns into a bat and flies out through the window,
laughing diabolically.

Homer, we've got to do something.  Today, he's drinking people's blood.
Tomorrow, he could be smoking!
-- Marge, concerned about Vampire Bart, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

 Lisa: The only way to get Bart back is to kill the head vampire: Mr.
Homer: Kill my boss?  Do I dare to live out the American dream?
-- Ethical dilemmas, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

So the family returns to Mr. Burns castle in Pennsylvania.

{This is dangerous.  I wish we could have found a sitter for Maggie...}
-- Marge, on a quest to kill Vampire Burns, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

{Homer notices the "SUPER FUN HAPPY SLIDE" lever, but Lisa warns him not
to pull it.  Homer agrees that killing will probably be fun enough.}

As they get to the bottom of the stairs, Lisa hands Homer a wooden stake
and mallet, and tells him, "You must drive this stake right through his
heart."  Homer looks over at Burns' coffin apprehensively.  He
approaches it and tears the lid off to reveal a sleeping Monty Burns.
"Take that, vile fiend!" he cries, hammering the stake into the still
body.  "Uh, Dad?  That's his crotch," observes Lisa.

Homer removes the stake sheepishly, and drives it into the old man's
heart.  Burns awakes suddenly, but it's too late: he gasps and groans as
his body melts into a puddle of flesh.  Homer sighs with relief, but
Burns has a little life left still: "You're fired!" he yells, quickly
melting again.

At the kitchen table the next day, Lisa comments, "It's so nice having
everything back to normal."  But Grandpa Simpson flies in, wearing a
black cape.

I'm a vampire, and I've come to suck your blood!
 [His false fangs fall out and he crashes into the refrigerator]
Oh!  [weakly] This cape is giving me a rash.
-- Fearsome Vampire Abe, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

Lisa can't understand what has happened.

 Lisa: Grandpa's a vampire?
 Bart: We're all vampires!
 Lisa: But, no!  We killed Mr. Burns --
Homer: You have to kill the _head_ vampire.
 Lisa: [points at Homer] _You're_ the head vampire?
Marge: No, _I'm_ the head vampire.  [laughs ghoulishly]
 Lisa: Mom?!
Marge: I _do_ have a life outside this house, you know.
-- Lucrative moonlighting, "Treehouse of Horror IV"

The family swoop towards Lisa, hissing at her.  But then everyone turns
to the camera and says, "Happy Hallowe'en, everybody!"  They begin to
sing "Hark, the Herald Angels Sing" while Milhouse plays a miniature
grand piano and Santa's Little Helper dances.

[End of Act Three.  Time: 21:07]

The theme music over the end has an "Addams Family" motif throughout,
and the "Gracie Films" music is different: instead of "Shh!", someone
screams, and an organ plays the normal music but in a minor key.


   {rjc} Raymond Chen
   {tc}  Tom Collins
   {rl}  Ricardo Lafaurie
   {gtm} Gary Meadows
   {dss} David Shuman
This episode summary is Copyright 1996 by James A. Cherry.  Not to be
redistributed in a public forum without permission.  (The quotes
themselves, of course, remain the property of The Simpsons, and the
reproduced articles remain the property of the original authors.  I'm
just taking credit for the compilation.)