It’s hard to celebrate Halloween without a nod to TV. Over the years, the idiot box has brought All Hallows Eve to life with either laughter, screams, or drama.
From animated shows, to sitcoms, to hour-long dramatic programs, there’s never been a shortage of great Halloween television. Being that the spooky day is almost upon us, we here at CraveOnline have put together a list of shows that we feel best represent the holiday. We call it 13 Awesome Halloween TV Episodes.
Let us know about your favorite Halloween episodes in the comment section below!
13 Greatest Halloween Episodes
13. It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown
Episode Title: "It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown"
Original Air Date: October 27th, 1966
Plot: Charlie Brown and the gang celebrate Halloween while Linus awaits the mythical Great Pumpkin in the pumpkin patch
Why We Chose It: Though it is a classic, we put Chuck and the gang at thirteen because, technically, it is not an “episode”, it’s a Halloween special. However, this is one of the greatest slices of Halloween television ever, so it had to be on this list.
12. Quantum Leap
Episode Title: "Boogieman"
Original Airdate: October 26th, 1990
Plot: Sam jumps into the body of a horror novelist on Halloween in 1964. As soon as he does, people start dying. To make matters worse, Al becomes the demon that gave the novelist nightmares as a child.
Why We Chose It: While many Halloween episodes attempted scary, “Boogieman” actually achieved it. The show always had oddball storylines, but this one was particularly dark and disturbing.
11. Family Matters
Episode Title: "Stevil"
Original Airdate: October 25th, 1996
Plot: Urkel’s ventriloquist dummy comes to life and haunts him.
Why We Chose It: Urkel is so irritating, that you actually root for the dummy. Not to mention, few things are as unnerving as a possessed doll.
10. How I Met Your Mother
Episode Title: "The Slutty Pumpkin"
Original Airdate: October 25th, 2005
Plot: Ted Mosby is spending Halloween waiting for the return of The Slutty Pumpkin, a beautiful girl (played by Katie Holmes) he met four years ago at a Halloween party. After their incredible night, Ted lost her number.
Now, dressed in the same costume he has had for four years, Ted is sure this will be the night he will once again run into the girl dressed as a slutty pumpkin.
Why We Chose It: Few things can do a rib on the Peanuts and pull it off. How I Met Your Mother nails it.
09. Modern Family
Episode Title: "Halloween"
Original Airdate: October 26th, 2010
Plot: Claire’s outlandish love of Halloween comes to a boil ,as she pulls in the entire family into the haunted house she puts together for the neighborhood. Meanwhile, Jay and Manny scare Gloria, and Cam has to deal with some bad Halloween memories.
Why We Chose It: While all TV shows have a Halloween episode, few have the holiday be the favorite of a major character. It’s also hysterical watching Claire’s mania over the holiday, surface. Bonus: Mitchell as Spider-Man.
Episode Title: "Rock Devil Rock"
Original Airdate: October 31st, 1982
Plot: Bobby and Ponch have to protect a KISS-like rock star that is convinced he’s cursed and will die.
Why We Chose It: This was one of the few solid episodes in the final season of "ChiPs." Not only was it funny to watch "C hiP s" try to write a “rock star”, the demon rocker was played by Donny Most, Ralph Malph from "Happy Days."
Sprinkle in Elvira when she was still hot, and there is absolutely no reason for us not to choose it.
Episode Title: "Halloween"
Original Airdate: October 28th, 1997
Plot: Hilarity ensues as a costume party thrown by Niles goes awry. Roz confesses to Frasier she might be pregnant, which a drunken Niles misconstrues as Frasier has impregnated Daphne. All this goes down during a snooty “Favorite Literary Character” costume party.
Why We Chose It: "Frasier" doesn’t get the credit it deserves for writing, acting and intelligence. This Halloween episode is a perfect example of how good the show is, and how they can turn even Halloween into something slightly smarter than the average show.
06. Happy Days
Episode Title: "Haunted"
Original Airdate: October 29th, 1974
Plot: Richie Cunningham doesn’t believe in ghosts, until he sees one at the old Simpson home. Meanwhile, Ralph has decided to hold his annual Halloween party at the very same house, in hopes of keeping local street gang The Demons from finding out where the party is, and crashing it.
Why We Chose It: Before it became formulaic, "Happy Days" was a wonderfully written slice of a yesteryear. In the early seasons, it didn’t pander to the audience as it did in later years. This Halloween special is a prime example of how good the show could be.
05. That 70's Show
Episode Title: "Halloween"
Original Airdate: October 26th, 1999
Plot: As Fez discovers trick or treating, the gang discovers that their old grammar school burnt down. Sneaking in, they read their permanent records, and some interesting secrets are revealed.
Why We Chose It: The costumes are great, and Fez learning about trick or treating is hysterical.
04. Freaks And Geeks
Episode Title: "Tricks And Treats"
Original Airdate: October 30th, 1999
Plot: Though they are freshmen in high school, the “Geeks” don costumes and attempt trick or treating. Meanwhile the teenage “Freaks” go on a vandalism run. Nothing works out at all the way it is supposed to.
Why We Chose It: While most shows go for laughs or screams on Halloween, "Freaks And Geeks" decided to really go for the heart. It touched on that universally relatable time when we realized we were no longer little kids, but we were not teenagers yet.
It also looks at that first year when Halloween turned into a night for booze, bad decisions and the occasional hook up. It’s a transitional show told through Halloween, and written beautifully.
03. South Park
Episode Title: "Korn’s Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery, Hell On Earth 2006"
Original Airdate: October 27th, 1999
Plot: Korn show up in South Park to try and help the kids solve the mystery of haunted pirates terrorizing the town.
Why We Chose it: Korn doing something that doesn’t suck. A take off on Scooby Doo, plus Zombie Kenny and an aggravated Cartman ghost. You do the math!!
02. The X Files
Episode Title: "Home"
Original Airdate: October 11th, 1996
Plot: Scully and Mulder show up in a small town to investigate the remains of baby found near the outskirts of town. The investigation leads them to three brothers, all part of a family that is the result of years of inbreeding.
Why We Chose It: It is suspenseful, terrifying, and disturbing. Most horror movies don’t have that trifecta.
01. The Simpsons
Episode Title: "Treehouse Of Horror V"
Original Airdate: October 30th, 1994
Plot: “The Shinning”. Homer is hired as a handyman at Mr. Burn’s estate. Deprived of beer and television, he goes insane.
“Time And Punishment”. Attempting to fix a toaster, Homer is zapped to other dimensions with insane versions of his family.
“Nightmare Cafeteria”. The Springfield children in detention are being butchered and served as lunch.
Why We Chose It: Raining donuts? A jab at Soylent Green? A complete take off of The Shining? It’s only the greatest Halloween episode ever, that’s all.