‘The Simpsons’ showed us the fiery dystopia we could cause if we don’t vote
“The Simpsons’"31st “Treehouse of Horror” Halloween-themed episode aired on Sunday.
Forget FiveThirtyEight. “The Simpsons” was predicting a … different October surprise.
America’s favorite animated sitcom dipped its toes into election forecasting on Sunday night with its 31st “Treehouse of Horror” special.
In its opening sequence, the yearly Halloween special dived deep into fears surrounding Nov. 3. “Homer, get down here!” a worried Marge Simpson tells her husband over the phone from the family’s polling place. “Your vote for president has never been more important!”
“That’s today? So fake,” Homer replies from his hammock, glancing at a newspaper that reads “Capricorn: NO HOROSCOPE — VOTE.”
“You’ll get down here this minute if you care about the three things you love most,” Marge scolds. Cut to Homer picturing dancing beer, donuts and pretzels.
“Are you picturing the kids?” Marge asks with suspicion. “Yes, Honey Mustard,” Homer replies with a yawn.
But the working-class protagonist, voiced by Dan Castellaneta, dashes down to his polling place, Springfield Elementary School.
He knows exactly who he wants to choose for all the judges and propositions (like California’s Proposition 22) on the ballot. “But president, that’s a stumper,” he wonders aloud. “Can I write in Judge Judy?”
Homer’s precocious 8-year-old daughter Lisa pops her head into the voting booth. “You’re hesitating over president?” she asks, outraged. “Dad, by all that’s decent, how could you forget everything that’s happened the last four years?”
Marge Simpson has words for Trump advisor and lawyer Jenna Ellis, who tried to unfavorably compare Kamala Harris to “The Simpsons” matriarch.
A stream of 50 reasons why people shouldn’t vote for Trump rolls onto the screen. “Put children in cages. Called Mexicans rapists,” the scrolling list reads. “Imitated disabled reporter. Called third-world countries s—holes.
“Said Jewish people who vote Democrat are disloyal,” the reasons continued. “Called white supremacists ‘fine people.’ Gutted the EPA. Called Baltimore a ‘disgusting, rat and rodent-infested mess.’”
“The Daily Show’s” definitive list of “Trump’s 100 Most Tremendous Scandals.”
“Yikes!” Homer responds. “I gotta do something.” In a suspenseful sequence, he finally puts pen to ballot. “Who are you going to make fun of now, late night comics?” he quips.
Of course, Marge comes home at 8 p.m. to find her husband still sound asleep in the hammock. “You slept all day?” she asks in shock, revealing that it was all a dream. “You didn’t vote?”
Bill Oakley, a writer on “The Simpsons,” admitted on Twitter that perhaps the animated TV show did forecast some of our troubling current events.
“Hey, how bad could it be?” Homer asks. Cut to January 20, 2021: Homer sits on top of his roof in full body armor as the city burns around him. U.S. Department of Homeland Security robots patrol the streets, kicking an octogenarian sky-high.
“That’s what I get for voting for Kanye!” the old man laments, flying through the air.
Jim Carrey as Joe Biden delivered a special message on “SNL” on Halloween.
Back in August, “The Simpsons” dipped into direct political commentary again, that time through Marge Simpson (voiced by Julie Kavner). In mid-August, Trump campaign advisor Jenna Ellis tweeted that “Kamala [Harris] sounds like Marge Simpson.”
“I usually don’t get into politics, but the president’s senior advisor, Jenna Ellis, just said Kamala Harris sounds like me,” Marge responded in a Twitter video. “Lisa says she doesn’t mean it as a compliment.
“If that’s so, as an ordinary suburban housewife, I’m starting to feel a little disrespected,” she continued. “I teach my children not to name-call, Jenna. I was going to say I’m pissed off, but I’m afraid they’d bleep it.”
Late-night hosts and TV shows also mirrored the spooky “Simpsons” episode. On Friday night, Trevor Noah’s “The Daily Show” aired a segment titled “Trump’s 100 Most Tremendous Scandals: The Definitive List” — eerily similar to Homer’s 50 reasons.
“96: No ‘thank you’ for John McCain funeral,” listed “The Daily Show.” “I gave him the kind of funeral that he wanted,” Trump says in a video clip. “I didn’t get ‘thank you,’ that’s OK.”
“42: Blacklisting ‘climate change,’” the list continued. “Advised staff members at the Natural Resources Conservation Service to avoid saying the term ‘climate change,’” says a TV news reporter in the background.
The complete guide to home viewing
Get Screen Gab for weekly recommendations, analysis, interviews and irreverent discussion of the TV and streaming movies everyone’s talking about.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.