The 20 Greatest Halloween-Themed TV Episodes

Within the grand TV canon, only some issues are sure: cancellation, crossovers, and themed episodes. Regardless of not being as integral to the TV machine as they as soon as had been, the custom of the vacation episode—and the Halloween episode, specifically—has continued to resist the check of time, even surviving into the streaming age. The right Halloween episode will embrace the precise vacation itself, some basic methods and treats, and a spooky storyline, too. And whereas the sitcom has undeniably cornered the market with its timeless Halloween episodes, exhibits throughout all genres have participated within the spooky season enjoyable, a lot to our delight.

Under, we’ve rounded up 20 important Halloween episodes to stream proper now, pulled from a variety of genres and spanning over 60 years of tv. Nevertheless, when you’re in search of simply spooky sitcom episodes, we’ve acquired you lined, together with the perfect of Bob’s Burgers and The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror specials. 

It’s the Nice Pumpkin, Charlie Brown 

Authentic Airdate: 1966

Watch on Apple TV+

It’s no secret that “It’s the Nice Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” is the textbook definition of an October TV particular, largely as a result of it codified this development within the first place. Nevertheless, extra than simply being the ur-Halloween episode, this Peanuts basic stays an annual custom in lots of households on account of its timeless humor. Regardless of being over half a century previous, these gags proceed to land: “I acquired a rock,” Linus crying over the loss of life of a pumpkin, Snoopy’s dramatic flight, Charlie Brown woefully whiffing a punt like he’s a member of the Chicago Bears, and extra are all accompanied by pitch-perfect supply and comedic timing. Vince Guaraldi’s breezy rating whisks us into vignettes that conjure the broadest strokes of Americana alongside a stunning quantity of specificity, which might be an element on this one’s lengthy tail.

At one level, Snoopy, ever the showman in his fighter jet costume, creeps via vaguely haunting tableaus of World Conflict I France, a reminder of how the sequence will instantly slip in small, pointed moments. And it’s all buoyed by Linus’ timeless perception that regardless of his continued absence, this 12 months, the “Nice Pumpkin” will come, offered that he affords sufficient “sincerity” in his pumpkin patch. Because of its lasting qualities, “It’s the Nice Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” continues to reside as much as yearly viewing and certain will for the foreseeable future. – Elijah Gonzalez

House Enchancment, “The Haunting of Taylor Home” (Season 2, Episode 6)

halloween episodes, home improvement

Authentic Airdate: 1992

Watch on Hulu

The Halloween episode actually started to really feel like a sitcom staple within the Nineties, and House Enchancment was one of many exhibits that made it so, even when the sequence doesn’t are typically recalled with fairly a lot fondness as of late. “The Haunting of Taylor Home” was the primary of many House Enchancment Halloween episodes to come back, which might enterprise from Tim (Tim Allen) having a deranged stalker to goth Mark (Taran Noah Smith) filming a horror film in the home. This one sees the youngsters as nonetheless impressionable little youths having a Halloween social gathering on the Taylor home, as Tim makes use of his spectacular basement haunted dungeon to actual a bit payback on one notably impolite social gathering visitor. If nothing else, the Halloween episodes of House Enchancment had been at all times an excuse for some foolish prop comedian gadgetry. —Jim Vorel

The Simpsons, “Treehouse of Horror IV” (Season 5, Episode 5)

halloween episodes, the simpsons

Authentic Airdate: 1993

Watch on Hulu

Selecting a single Simpsons episode for a Halloween record is genuinely painful, as there isn’t a different animated sequence, even together with the likes of Bob’s Burgers, that has made Halloween a much bigger a part of its id. Ultimately, it seemingly comes all the way down to “Treehouse of Horror IV” or “V,” each of which might lay declare to being the head of this storytelling fashion, however we’ll give the bump to “IV” for the good wraparound segments that includes Bart in a parody of Rod Serling’s creepy internet hosting fashion on Nineteen Seventies horror anthology sequence Night time Gallery. As for the person segments, we have now Homer’s ill-gotten donut that nearly prices him his soul, the impressed parody of Twilight Zone’s “Nightmare at 20,000 Toes,” and the particularly well-drawn “Bart Simpson’s Dracula,” which nails its parody of Coppola’s luxurious however ridiculous movie. Put them collectively, and you’ve got top-of-the-line half-hours of Halloween comedy of all time. —Jim Vorel

Sabrina the Teenage Witch, “A River of Sweet Corn Runs By means of It” (Season 2, Episode 6)


Authentic Airdate: 1997

Watch on Hulu

Regardless of being a present a couple of literal witch, Sabrina the Teenage Witch usually strays away from the campiness of Halloween itself. On this episode, Sabrina (Melissa Joan Hart) should host her non-magical associates for a Halloween social gathering, whereas nonetheless sustaining the guise that she herself is odd. From her wacky aunts to bewitched speaking furnishings, the home and its inhabitants clearly produce other concepts. 

When carolers come over from the opposite realm, donning masks which are too real looking, the fiasco will get kicked as much as a ten. Watching Sabrina run round in an try to cull this catastrophe social gathering is hilarious albeit aggravating. Ultimately every thing is solved, and the episode ends with a efficiency by 10,000 Maniacs, a becoming and nostalgic finish when watching this ‘90s tv basic. — Kaiya Shunyata

Boy Meets World, “And Then There Was Sean” (Season 5, Episode 17)

halloween episodes, boy meets world

Authentic Airdate: 1998

Watch on Disney+

Continuously cited as not only a nice “Halloween episode” however top-of-the-line episodes of Boy Meets World basically, “And Then There Was Shawn” takes a daring swing by daring to faithfully transplant the spirit of late ‘90s meta slashers into what’s in any other case a household pleasant sitcom. You may see the way it occurred, with the likes of Scream and I Know What You Did Final Summer time nonetheless recent within the American zeitgeist when this aired in 1998, but it surely’s nonetheless stunning to revisit all of it these years later and see Mr. Feeny stabbed to loss of life within the halls of the highschool! The episode will get essentially the most out of the varsity location as a claustrophobic minefield, and provided that all of it seems to be a dream–in fact–it permits our beloved solid members to be got rid of gruesomely. In reality, this could be the perfect try at slasher parody we’ve seen in a TV episode, capped off by a splendidly gratuitous visitor starring flip from Jennifer Love Hewitt. —Jim Vorel

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, “Worry Itself” (Season 4, Episode 4)

halloween episodes, buffy the vampire slayer

Authentic Airdate: 1999

Watch on Hulu

Buffy the Vampire Slayer as an entire is, arguably, an extremely Halloween-friendly sequence. Urgent play on Season 1 on October 1st could be an unimaginable strategy to kick off the spooky season, however even past its Halloween-y nature, Buffy’s devoted vacation episodes will not be ones to overlook. Whereas Season 2’s “Halloween” would be the apparent selection for Buffy’s greatest Halloween outing, the actual gem is Season 4’s “Worry, Itself.” Unbeknownst to them, a gaggle of frat boys by accident turns their frat right into a home of horrors throughout their annual Halloween social gathering. Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and the Scoobies get locked inside the home, the place they’re all pressured to confront their biggest fears. That includes every thing from the Scoobies’ fears to Anya’s iconic bunny costume, this episode is really haunting at its most critical, however nonetheless deeply humorous and kooky, as all Buffy episodes are wont to be. When the Scoobies uncover precisely what demon they’re coping with, all of them neglect to see the funniest asterisk the sequence would ever use: “precise dimension.” —Anna Govert

How I Met Your Mom, “The Slutty Pumpkin” (Season 1, Episode 6)

halloween episodes, how i met your mother

Authentic Airdate: 2005

Watch on Hulu

At its greatest, the early seasons of How I Met Your Mom had an attractive means of depicting craving and missed alternatives, these moments that we persuade ourselves in a while might have been important if solely they’d gone barely in another way, whether or not or not that is truly true. That is crystalized in Season 1 Halloween episode “The Slutty Pumpkin,” which options Ted (Josh Radnor) obsessing every Halloween over a girl he briefly met at a celebration three years in the past, however was by no means capable of finding once more. Annually, he returns to the identical social gathering, sporting the identical more and more dated costume–the basic romantic, ready for her to reappear. In fact, she by no means does–not right here, anyway. Years later, the present truly did repay the Slutty Pumpkin’s id, and in basic HIMYM vogue, she turned out to not be notably fascinating to Ted or anybody else. Ultimately, it was the craving and the hunt to seek out her that was important, not the payoff. —Jim Vorel

The Suite Lifetime of Zack and Cody, “The Ghost in Suite 613” (Season 1, Episode 19)

Authentic Airdate: 2005

Watch on Disney+

Airing within the first season of The Suite Lifetime of Zack and Cody, “The Ghost in Suite 613” might be the scariest factor to ever air on Disney Channel. After they study of a supposed ghost haunting a set within the lodge they reside in, Zack (Dylan Sprouse) and Cody (Cole Sprouse) enlist London (Brenda Tune), Maddie (Ashley Tisdale), and Esteban to assist them channel the ghost’s spirit.

As soon as they make it into the suite, the episode pulls no punches with the scares, from ghost detectors to characters being pulled off-screen one after the other right into a darkish abyss. Probably the most memorable a part of the episode is undoubtedly the séance that takes place within the second half, the place Esteban will get possessed by the titular ghost. Although all of it seems to be a prank the gang are pulling on Zack, that doesn’t cease the uneasiness all of us felt watching this as children.  — Kaiya Shunyata

Psych, “Scary Sherry: Bianca’s Toast” (Season 1, Episode 15)

halloween episodes, psych

Authentic Airdate: 2007

Watch on Peacock

USA’s Psych is synonymous with Halloween—a lot in order that USA even put a DVD collectively of the perfect “Psych-o-ween” episodes to look at for the spooky season. Out of all of these episodes (which comprise however will not be restricted to werewolf transformations, The Shining references, a Friday the thirteenth-esque slasher camp, and a lot extra), the head of  Psych‘s spooky episodes is the one one to really happen on or round Halloween, Season 1’s “Scary Sherry (Bianca’s Toast).” Performing as the primary season finale, this episode follows Shawn (James Roday) and Gus (Dulé Hill) as they’re roped into Juliet’s (Maggie Lawson) undercover mission at an allegedly-haunted sorority home after the ladies start to imagine they’re being haunted by the ghost of a recently-deceased pledge who fell to her loss of life on Halloween night time. That includes every thing from a spooky city legend to a classically-Psych mystery-solving methodology, “Scary Sherry (Bianca’s Toast)” is a enjoyable season-ender and an much more enjoyable Halloween-season watch. —Anna Govert

Citadel, “Vampire Weekend” (Season 2, Episode 6)

halloween episodes, castle

Authentic Airdate: 2009

Watch on Hulu

Whereas the Halloween episode could also be a most-known staple of the sitcom, broadcast procedurals have been identified to get in on the Halloween enjoyable as nicely. ABC’s Citadel, in its second season, delivered a spooky and enjoyable episode that really had every thing. I imply, the place else might you presumably see Nathan Fillion’s Citadel donning his Malcolm Reynolds Firefly gear, then clear up a vampiric homicide, all whereas planning a banger Halloween social gathering and being an unimaginable father to his teenage daughter alongside the way in which? From its touching but spooky thriller to that basic will-they-won’t-they stress effervescent between Citadel and Beckett (Stana Katic), there’s a lot to like about Citadel’s rendezvous with a vampire. —Anna Govert

Glee, “The Rocky Horror Glee Present” (Season 2, Episode 5)

Authentic Airdate: 2010

Watch on Hulu

Regardless of airing for six seasons, Season 2 entry “The Rocky Horror Glee Present” stays one in all Glee’s most celebrated episodes in its historical past. The episode follows the glee membership as they try to placed on their very own model of The Rocky Horror Image Present. Whereas the varsity gained’t approve the play, glee membership chief Mr. Schuester (Matthew Morrison) permits the gang to carry out the present for him to point out off their arduous work.

The episode is crammed with highlights, however nothing comes near Mercedes’ (Amber Riley) flip as Frank-N-Furter. Usually relegated to the background, Mercedes is lastly in a position to steal the present along with her highly effective rendition of an iconic popular culture determine. Her stellar vocals are an ideal match for the dramatics it takes to play such an excessive character, and there’s nobody who might have carried out it higher. — Kaiya Shunyata

South Park, “A Nightmare on Facetime” (Season 16, Episode 12)

halloween episodes, south park

Authentic Airdate: 2012

Watch on Max

There are a handful of high quality South Park Halloween episodes, however the crown jewel might be “A Nightmare on Facetime,” which manages to fuse collectively commentary on the evolution of streaming media with an episode-length parody of The Shining, with Randy Marsh at its heart. So many different sequence (like The Simpsons) have tackled Shining parodies over time, however kudos to this one for the way in which it transplants the fabric from Kubrick’s movie specifically to a brand new setting: the dilapidated Blockbuster Video that Randy buys, pondering he can flip it right into a worthwhile household enterprise. That is an episode concerning the generational divide, and the way adults so usually wrestle to adapt to the brand new media panorama, however principally it’s only a pitch-perfect sequence of Shining gags as Randy slips into inevitable insanity and makes an attempt to homicide his household. —Jim Vorel

Brooklyn 9-9, “Halloween” (Season 1, Episode 6)

halloween episodes, brooklyn 99

Authentic Airdate: 2013

Watch on Peacock

Brooklyn 9-9’s foray into Halloween episodes simply might have been a one-and-done, but it surely’s a testomony to how nicely “Halloween” is pulled off that it in the end resulted in one of many present’s most beloved working gags: the Halloween Heist. In reality, the vacation itself doesn’t matter that a lot to the core of this episode–the idea of Jake (Andy Samberg) and Holt (Andre Braugher) competing in a heist competitors might have occurred at any time. However the essential and viewers acclaim of the convoluted planning, permitting Jake to point out his most devious facet, made this a Halloween custom that the present would try to duplicate and high a number of extra instances. And actually, the entire Halloween Heists are nice, even once they’re more and more straying into ridiculous territory. It’s at all times enjoyable to look at these characters in petty competitors with one another, vying for the celebrated title of “Final Detective/Genius.” —Jim Vorel

Fairly Little Liars, “Grave New World” (Season 4, Episode 13)

Authentic Airdate: 2013

Watch on Max

There won’t be one other teen drama as well-known for its Halloween episodes as Freeform’s Fairly Little Liars. The sequence’ spooky episodes cowl all of it, together with quite a few iconic costumes (Ali and Jenna each being dressed as the identical Woman Gaga is unforgettable), basic jumpscares, and even homicide on a shifting prepare. Whereas there are a plethora of episodes to select from, Season 4’s “Grave New World” is the sequence’ greatest. Additionally appearing as a backdoor pilot to the one-season spinoff Ravenswood, “Grave New World” explores the wonders of this spookier city, all whereas Aria (Lucy Hale), Spencer (Troian Bellisario), Hanna (Ashely Benson), and Emily (Shay Mitchell) examine the chance that Alison (Sasha Pieterse) may truly be alive. This episode additionally marks when Ezra (Ian Harding) was essentially the most compelling “A” suspect, and when the sequence turned up the creep issue to a ten throughout its really excellent fourth season. Whereas “Grave New World” could also be the perfect of the bunch, “This Is a Darkish Experience” and Fairly Little Liars spinoff Authentic Sin’s “The Night time He Got here House” deserve not less than an honorable point out. —Anna Govert

Stranger Issues, “Trick or Deal with, Freak” (Season 2, Episode 2)

Authentic Airdate: 2017

Watch on Netflix

Airing in that sweet-spot when Stranger Issues was nonetheless in a position to seize the nostalgia it was so desperate to craft, “Trick or Deal with, Freak” looks like a basic Halloween episode. Because the second episode of the season, the mysteries of the the other way up nonetheless really feel recent, with Will (Noah Schnapp) bouncing to-and-from dimensions. Because the group go trick or treating, he succumbs to his visions and is transported into the realm he was as soon as caught in, giving us a improbable and terrifying view of the Mindflayer.

The episode additionally showcases Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) studying about Halloween, dressing up as a ghost with a comical bedsheet. Even when it’s not showcasing the scary bits, the episode revels within the childlike marvel of Halloween, completely balancing the characters between the ages the place dressing up won’t be cool anymore, however trick or treating with your pals nonetheless permits you all to be children once more. In capturing the whimsicalness of the vacation, “Trick or Deal with, Freak” stays top-of-the-line Halloween episodes of the trendy age. — Kaiya Shunyata

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, “Cellphone House” (Season 3, Episode 4)

halloween episodes, legends of tomorrow

Authentic Airdate: 2017

Watch on Netflix

Regardless of by no means getting a correct ending, The CW’s Legends of Tomorrow continues to be one in all TV’s greatest superhero exhibits, and its Halloween episode lives as much as the hype. When Ray (Brandon Routh) disappears from the Waverider, the Legends uncover that he truly died in 1988 on account of an anachronism within the timeline. To save lots of Ray from his premature destiny, the Legends journey again to the ‘80s to rescue the Atom earlier than he might go lacking on Halloween night time. In the end changing into a narrative of a younger boy who struggled to seek out connection unexpectedly connecting with a international creature (very like the movie its title paid homage to) this Halloween episode is sickeningly candy, charmingly hilarious, and classically Legends. —Anna Govert

BoJack Horseman, “Mr. Peanutbutter’s Boos” (Season 5, Episode 8)

Authentic Airdate: 2018

Watch on Netflix

Whereas seasonal episodes aren’t the very first thing I might affiliate with BoJack Horseman’s darkly comedian run, “Mr. Peanutbutter’s Boos” works each as an excellent standalone Halloween particular and a sometimes informative have a look at its solid. It primarily follows Mr. Peanutbutter, Bojack’s perpetual frenemy, at 4 totally different Halloween events throughout 25 years as he annoys every of his companions via his incapability to hearken to their issues. On their face, the costumes at these bashes supply enjoyable glimpses into the pop-culture touchstones of the second, conveying what folks had been into on the time alongside evergreen fears (just like the anxiousness that nobody will perceive your getup). However greater than this, it additionally fleshes out an affable side-character in Mr. Peanutbutter by demonstrating how he’s didn’t study from his previous relationships and continued to prioritize light-hearted enjoyable over all else, which is emphasised by match cuts and wipes that seamlessly transition us between him committing comparable errors throughout eras. Nonetheless, we get not less than a bit self-reflection by its closing moments that trace he’s beginning to study his lesson. In a present about characters struggling towards how arduous it’s to lastly change, this episode affords the kinds of hilarious, unhappy, and slicing ruminations on people making an attempt to show the nook that the sequence is understood for. – Elijah Gonzalez

WandaVision, “All-New Halloween Spooktacular!” (Season 1, Episode 6)

halloween episodes

Authentic Airdate: 2021

Watch on Disney+

WandaVision’s Halloween episode turned an immediate cultural touchstone the second it aired. From the enduring, classically-Marvel Comics costumes to the introduction of Evan Peters to the MCU, “All-New Halloween Spooktacular” outlined the Halloween season in 2021. Regardless of some disappointing outcomes for the bigger threads arrange on this episode (who might presumably neglect Ralph Bohner?), as a stand-alone piece, Episode 6 affords a hilarious and heartfelt commentary on the custom of Halloween specials, all lovingly conveyed within the fashion of a Malcom within the Center-esque sitcom set-up. —Anna Govert

Abbott Elementary, “Sweet Zombies” (Season 2, Episode 6)

A Love Letter to Halloween Themed Sitcom Episodes

Authentic Airdate: 2022

Watch on Hulu

In its first Halloween episode, Abbott Elementary dealt with the plain strain of this sitcom milestone with ease, delivering an episode that was concurrently heartfelt and hilarious in basic Abbott vogue. When the scholars at Abbott start displaying indicators of a sugar rush, the lecturers should band collectively to seek out the perpetrator earlier than your entire college is overrun with, you guessed it, sweet zombies. That includes a slew of iconic costumes and hilarious moments (just like the unimaginable recreation of the Infinity Conflict scene between Melissa as Wanda, Mr. Johnson as Imaginative and prescient, and the scholar as Thanos), Abbott Elementary’s first Halloween episode was already one for the ages. —Anna Govert

Riverdale, “Halloween II” (Season 7, Episode 11)

halloween episodes, riverdale

Authentic Airdate: 2023

Watch on Netflix

Riverdale is one other sequence on this record to have multiple devoted Halloween episode, and whereas the present’s unique vacation episode is a basic (particularly for Cheryl and Toni dressed as Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn), the present’s ‘50s Halloween bash was really one for the ages. It wouldn’t be an episode of Riverdale and not using a musical quantity, and Veronica (Camila Mendes), Kevin (Casey Cott), Clay (Karl Walcott), Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch), and Toni’s (Vanessa Morgan) rendition of the Rocky Horror Image Present basic (“Rose Tint My World / Don’t Dream It Be It,” which hilariously wouldn’t truly be launched till 1972) is one other campy and enjoyable efficiency to place the cherry on high of this sweet corn-sweet episode. —Anna Govert

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