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The Twilight Zone

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The Twilight Zone is an American anthology television series that was created by Rod Serling. The original series aired from 1959 to 1964. A film adaptation appeared in 1983, consisting of remakes of three of the original series episodes and one new story. A revival TV series aired for three television seasons, from 1985 to 1989. Later, a second revival series was made, but was not as successful and lasted only one season (2002-2003).

In addition to television and film, The Twilight Zone has been made into video games, a pinball machine, comic books, and graphic novels. Also, numerous Twilight Zone short stories exist, both episode adaptations and original stories by Rod Serling and other authors.

The Twilight Zone was notable for its genre-spanning story repertoire, running the gamut from science fiction to suspense, fantasy, thriller, and psychological horror. The stories often concluded with a twist ending and usually a moral.

The Twilight Zone has been referenced many times on The Simpsons.

References to The Twilight Zone in The Simpsons[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Picture Season Episode number Episode name Reference
How to Cook Humans.png 2 016 "Treehouse of Horror" When Lisa snoops on the Rigellians' ship, she finds a cookbook whose title is eventually revealed to be How to Cook for Forty Humans, but first appears to be How to Cook Humans. The book is a reference to the Twilight Zone episode "To Serve Man" where aliens greet people with a book titled To Serve Man, as revealed when it's translated. The curious people accept the aliens' invitations to see their homeworld, and they travel with the aliens on their spaceships. One woman accepts such an invitation, but is stopped by her brother, who has properly translated the book and is shouting "It's a cookbook! It's a cookbook!".
Monster is a Ten-Year-Old Boy.png 3 042 "Treehouse of Horror II" The voice-over introduction to Bart's nightmare is based on Rod Serling making the introduction to the Twilight Zone episodes. Also, Bart's nightmare is largely based on the "It's a Good Life" segment of The Twlight Zone Movie.
Evil Krusty Doll THOH3.png 4 064 "Treehouse of Horror III" The first segment, "Clown Without Pity", is an overall spoof of the Twilight Zone episode "Living Doll", though it also has elements of the TV special Trilogy of Terror and the Child's Play film franchise.
Terror at 5 and a Half Feet - Title Card.png 5 086 "Treehouse of Horror IV" The "Terror at 5 1/2 Feet" segment is a parody of the Twilight Zone episode "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet", set on a bus rather than an airplane.
MotL - TwilightZoneRef.png 087 "Marge on the Lam" Lionel Hutz's line, "This isn't the YMCA", appears to be a reference to the The Twilight Zone episode "Person or Persons Unknown", in which the protagonist snidely remarks at one point, "What? This isn't the YMCA?".
Bart's Comet.jpg 6 117 "Bart's Comet" The scene where an angry mob wants access to Flanders' shelter references The Twilight Zone episode "The Shelter".
Surgery de Plastique.png 118 "Homie the Clown" Krusty has a facelift and wants to see himself in a mirror, only to be shocked at the procedure and how it turned out. This is a nod to The Twilight Zone episode "The Eye of the Beholder", where a woman's face is also botched beyond repair, only to reveal that she actually looks normal, but this takes place in another universe where ugly faces are the norm and a beautiful face is seen as hideous.
HomerTwilightZoneRef.png 7 134 "Treehouse of Horror VI" The portal is similar to The Twilight Zone episode "Little Girl Lost". Even Homer says: "It's like something from that Twilighty show about that Zone".
Tooth city.png 8 154 "Treehouse of Horror VII" "The Genesis Tub" is inspired by the 1962 Twilight Zone episode called "The Little People", where astronauts stumble upon a tiny civilization on an asteroid.
EARL.png 162 "El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer" E.A.R.L. being a robot rather than a human being is a reference to the The Twilight Zone episode "The Old Man in the Cave".
10 207 "Treehouse of Horror IX" The plot of The Terror of the Tiny Toon references Twilight Zone: The Movie, where a real-life person also ends up in an animated cartoon and get killed. Incidentally that person in Twilight Zone: the Movie was performed by Nancy Cartwright.
WBCBB - TwilightZone ref.png 214 "Wild Barts Can't Be Broken" The last scene with the elderly playing in the street is a reference to the Twilight Zone episode Kick the Can.
12 262 "New Kids on the Blecch" Marge says to Homer "Oh, please. You get exhausted watching The Twilight Zone marathon!"
StrongArmsMa - TwilightZone ref.png 14 300 "The Strong Arms of the Ma" When Marge runs over the mailman and tells him that it will take a while for help to arrive, he says it's no problem as he's got plenty to read and picks up a Twilight Zone magazine. Then, to his horror, he discovers that his glasses are broken, referencing the 1959 episode "Time Enough at Last". The music from the show plays after this.
Ned Gets Death Vision.png 16 336 "Treehouse of Horror XV" "The Ned Zone" segment is reminiscent of a Twilight Zone episode called "The Purple Testament", in addition to being a parody of the Stephen King novel The Dead Zone.
THOH16 - TZ ref.png 17 360 "Treehouse of Horror XVI" The segment "I've Grown a Costume on Your Face" references Twilight Zone episode "The Masks", in which four greedy heirs are told to wear hideous masks by their rich, dying relative, which turn them into monsters.
Them Robot - TwilightZoneRef.png 23 503 "Them, Robot" The robot who saves Homer's life by pushing him out of the path of an oncoming truck (and being himself hit as a result) is like the self-sacrificing robot in The Twilight Zone episode, "I Sing the Body Electric".
Rod Serling.png 25 532 "Treehouse of Horror XXIV" In the opening sequence, Rod Serling, creator and host of the original TV series, is seen smoking a cigarette.

Comics[edit]

Picture Comic issue Story name Reference
Twilight Zone Reference Venusian.png Bart Simpson's Treehouse of Horror #3 The Immigration of the Body Snatchers Dr. Marvin Monroe unmasks himself as an invading three-eyed Venusian who is ready to take on the Pod People who are also invading, although a group of Martians are in turn prepared to deal with the Venusians. This is a reference to the Twilight Zone episode "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?"

In the same scene an ape screams "To Serve Man - it's a cookbook!", referencing the "To Serve Man" episode.


Video games[edit]

Picture Game Reference
Kang reading How to Cook Humans.png The Simpsons: Tapped Out Kang is seen reading a book titled How to Cook Humans. The book is a reference to the Twilight Zone television episode "To Serve Man", as detailed in the entry above for the "Treehouse of Horror" television episode.

Twitter[edit]

Account Date Tweet
ComicBookGuy October 20, 2011 I can't wait for the World Series to end. To me, baseball is only good when they show "Twilight Zone" reruns during rain delays.

External links[edit]