If you’re between the ages of 30 and 50, The Simpsons’Annual Treehouse of HorrorIt was probably an important aspect of your childhood. In fact, we have argued that it’s important, period. It’s always fun to revisit each anthology episode, but what if I told you there are hundreds of pages of Treehouse of Horror comics? This week, it’s available in an extra-sized hardcover.
The first ever Treehouse of Horror omnibus is now available, and it’s quite impressive. This 416-page collection includes 23 stories originally published by Bongo.
Listen to the latest episode on our weekly comics podcast
Use the anthology format of Treehouse of Horror episodes The SimpsonsThis collection contains stories ranging from horror adaptations to comedy. Lord of the Rings to incredibly twisted and dark slashers with familiar characters killing other familiar characters. It’s a collection any Simpsons fan would adore, but it’s an easy recommendation for fans of comics as well.
It’s impressive just how many different tales there are in this collection. It’s easy to understand once you see how many comic and celebrity icons filled the pages with art and stories. We’re talking Michael Allred, Sergio Aragonés, Eric Powell, Stan Sakai, Kyle Baker, Kelley Jones, Evan Dorkin, Jeffrey Brown, Jill Thompson, Gail Simone, Mark Hamill, Jeff Smith, Thomas Lennon, and Patton Oswalt, to name just a few. Of course, Matt Groening supplies stories too.
The book includes a list of comic creators, which is a great resource. It is possible to look through the list and scroll backward to see their story. Or, you might just be grabbing a random book to get a dose of horror. The stories range from comical one-page house advertisements to lengthy, comical ones.
The book is organized by theme, starting with “Invasions From Beyond”, then “Technology Run Amok”, “Trick or Terror”, “Chilling Killer Thrills”, and “From the Shadows”, before wrapping things up with “Parallel Parables”. As you might guess, each section contains horror themes such as aliens or the dangers of technology.
Parents who remember the cartoon as being quite tame should be aware that this book is very graphic and hardy with its stories. There are many stories that are as easy or more difficult than those in the animated cartoons. Mark Hamill’s story “Catastrophe in Substitute Springfields,” for instance, utilizes Comic Book Guy in a fun way as he attempts to use a special ray to duplicate highly rare comics for resale. As the machine eventually prints a useless comic, it goes horribly wrong. Bill Morrison, who provides the art for many stories, created the comic. The story is funny because it understands The SimpsonsComic nerds are so much fun.
Stories like Eric Powell’s, on the other hand, are as edgy as any horror comic you’ll read in modern comics. Titled “Willie: Portrait of a Groundskeeper,” this story mixes in the horniness of Bart and Millhouse with incredible violence and worse. We’re talking Groundskeeper Willie waking up with an animal after making love to it and Marge being cooked and served like a meal! You will enjoy his iconic illustrations. The Goon series, you’ll delight in the art style Powell delivers and the edgy humor. It’s a fabulous story drawn by Morrison. It captures what it means to be human. The SimpsonsSo much fun, and what makes comic-nerds so annoying.
Paul Dini’s story “The Cask of Amontillado-D’oh” features a darker edge. In this case, Moe changes up his patrons who don’t pay for their drinks. The story is drawn by Dan Brereton, who has a macabre, savage, and indie feel. Many stories in this omnibus feel like they don’t belong within the antiseptic-looking and mega-popular SimpsonsLine of comics. They’re that cool.
Stan Sakai’s story is straight out of The Wizard of OzLisa tries to explain the changing Springfield. Mr. Burns ends up being the Wicked Witch, of course, and it’s a delightfully bright and cute story.
Fans of superheroes will love Chris Yambar and Tone Rodriguez’s “One Bart and Stormy Night.” The story features Bartman, but it’s basically a straight Batman adaptation. We’re talking Barny as Killer Croc and Lisa as Joker, who goes by the name Giggler. The story looks fantastic in the extra-sized format, and there’s a fun twist on Arkham as it holds everyone pranked by Bartman.
This book contains many TV and movie shows that are spoofed. Evan Dorkin has a go at Family GuyFor instance, Patton Oswalt spoofs Jason Ho in a very cool visual manner. They Live in a story called “They Draw.” The latter story takes some cracks at other movies too, but boy is the sunglasses idea used well for a comic book. Lenny is able to see the world around his in graph paper and uncolored pencils. It is truly haunting to see Lenny as a comic character.
You could go on and on with the quality of tales in this collection, so I’ll talk about just one more by comic greats Gail Simone and Jill Thompson. The tale originally published in a 2002 issue which goes by the name “Tales from the Kwik-E-Mart.” Like a twisted The RavenThis tale, written by Edgar Allan Poe is rhymed with great art showing cereal mascots attacking the families. Over five pages, every panel tells a story, be it a toucan pecking Homer’s head or Marge being chased by a leprechaun.
The collection is beautifully made. This extra-large book comes in hardcover with an inset that looks like a Simpsons wallpaper. The book slides into a slipcase which glows in darkness. There is a texture to the hardcover where characters can be placed using a shiny material. This gives it a cool effect.
I can’t recommend The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Ominous Omnibus Vol. 1: Scary Tales & Scarier Tentacles enough. Not only does it have a treasure trove of comic book talent contributing stories, but it feels expensive in your hands for under $40. Fans of horror, comics, The Simpsons, or even a wacky good time will adore this slice of comic history.
‘The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Ominous Omnibus Vol. 1: Scary Tales & Scarier Tentacles’ review
The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Ominous Omnibus Vol. 1: Scary Tales & Scarier Tentacles
I cannot recommend The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Ominous Omnibus Vol. 1: Scary Tales & Scarier Tentacles enough. You can feel expensive with it for less than $40. For comics and horror fans The SimpsonsThis comic is a great way to have a good time, or just for fun.
A list of contributor stories is impressive, many of which are modern masters.
Every page feels like an adventure with its mix of art and stories
Stories are available for casual Simpsons fans or hardcore horror fans.
This hardcover is a great value for money and comes with a slipcase.
You can become a Patron today and get access to the Discord community and monthly comic book club. Ad-free browsing at aiptcomics.com is also available. Every month you will receive a physical tradepaperback.