The Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror XXXI Gets Trailer

This weekend will see the annual event that some audiences look forward to almost as much as Halloween itself, as The Simpsons will be unleashing their latest installment in the "Treehouse of Horror" series, with a new trailer teasing the hilarity we can expect in the all-new episode. While the animated series largely avoids drawing direct attention to timely pop culture events, this new promo for the upcoming episode sees Marge wearing a mask, likely a reference to the current coronavirus pandemic, but given the series' sardonic sense of humor, we won't be surprised to learn she's keeping her face covered for an entirely different reason. Check out the promo for The Simpsons' "Treehouse of Horror XXXI" below and catch the episode Sunday, October 18th at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.

The upcoming episode is described, "Don’t miss the annual terror-themed trilogy, including a frightening look at the 2020 election, parodies of Pixar and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, and a ninth birthday Lisa just can’t get over."

The first installment in the tradition, which unfolded in the second season of the series, took the "Treehouse of Horror" name literally, as it saw the characters in the Simpson family treehouse telling each other creepy stories, filled with the show's signature wit. Subsequent entries saw similar wraparound narratives being told through partygoers attempting to unsettle their friends or having too much candy resulting in nightmares for the Simpson children.

As time went by, not only did this wraparound structure get abandoned, but so did the adherence to the concept of "horror" stories. In their quest to craft dozens of episodes, each consisting of at least three segments, the series would find itself offering lampoons of nearly any piece of pop culture, so long as none of the segments were considered canon for the series. As evidenced by this latest episode parodying Pixar films and Into the Spider-Verse, clearly the major force behind these annual episodes is parodying pieces of pop culture the series wouldn't otherwise commit entire storylines to.

In Season 27 of the series, The Simpsons covered new ground, as it not only delivered audiences the anticipated "Treehouse of Horror" episode, but it even delivered audiences its first official Halloween episode with "Halloween of Horrors," featuring Lisa attempting to overcome her many fears and Marge taking Bart trick-or-treating.

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Tune in to The Simpsons' "Treehouse of Horror XXXI" this Sunday, October 18th at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.

Will you be tuning in to the new episode? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars!