‘The Simpsons’ spoofs the ‘Alien’ franchise: A brief history

05.25.16 1 year ago

The Alien films have been endlessly spoofed in popular culture, and with its bevy of cinematic references, The Simpsons has proven to be particularly fertile ground for clever tributes to the cult horror/sci-fi series. On the 37th anniversary of Ridley Scott's 1979 original, here's a brief history of the show's loving homages to the cult franchise. Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments.

(All references compiled from the Alien Anthology Wiki.)

Season 5, Episode 15 (“Deep Space Homer”)

The first instance of The Simpsons' Alien spoofery came during Season 5, when, during a segment of the uber-violent Itchy and Scratchy Show, Itchy is shown bursting from Scratchy's stomach in the style of H.R. Giger's baby xenomorph.

Photo Credit: FOX

Season 5, Episode 19 (“Sweet Seymour Skinner”s Baadasssss Song”)

After Santa's Little Helper escapes into the air ducts of Springfield Elementary, Groundskeeper Willie is sent in after him, leading to a direct spoof of the sequence in Alien that sees Dallas navigating the ventilation shafts of the Nostromo with the help of Lambert's Atari-esque motion tracker.

(Clip begins at :18)

Season 7, Episode 6 (“Treehouse of Horror VI”)

In the famous final segment of “ToH VI,” Homer enters a three-dimensional world that approximates the cutting-edge animation of the mid 1990s. While the segment is technically a parody of the Twilight Zone episode “Little Girl Lost,” the title's format “Homer^3” (in addition to being a math gag) is a direct homage to the “cubed” title of David Fincher's 1992 threequel Alien 3, according to crew members featured on the audio commentary for the episode's home video release (via A.V. Club).

Photo Credit: FOX

Season 13, Episode 12 (“The Lastest Gun in the West”)

During a shootout with the Springfield Police during a bank robbery, Snake Jailbird and a number of other criminals use guns clearly modeled off the M41A pulse rifles brandished by Ripley and Hicks in James Cameron's Aliens.

Photo Credit: FOX

Season 21, Episode 15 (“Stealing First Base”)

During a montage of famous kissing scenes from various films, the iconic scene from Alien 3 in which the xenomorph has Ripley up against a wall in the infirmary gets a revisionist ending when the alien's inner jaw smooches the bad-ass heroine on the cheek.

(Clip begins at :31)

Season 22, Episode 4 (“Treehouse of Horror XXI”)

In the opening scene of “ToH XXI,” an alien embryo can be spotted in Professor Frink's stomach as he walks in front of his X-ray machine.

Season 23, Episode 3 (“Treehouse of Horror XXII”)

During the episode's opening scene, Bart's standard-issue astronaut ensemble is revealed to be much more when Maggie bursts from his chest in a xenomorph costume.

Season 24, Episode 8 (“To Cur with Love”)

During a fundraiser hosted by Mr. Burns, a flying Blinky fish appears sporting the razor-sharp inner jaw of a xenomorph.

Photo Credit: FOX

Season 25, Episode 2 (“Treehouse of Horror XXIV”)

During “ToH XXIV's” opening title sequence, a fully-grown xenomorph can briefly be assembling in a field alongside other classic monsters.

(Skip to 2:04)

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