The annual ‘Treehouse of Horror’ Halloween episode of FOX’s The Simpsons will parody the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq, according to a report by ABCNews.com. What’s more, the special is scheduled to air the first week of November, just before the midterm congressional election.
While the writers of The Simpsons have never shied away from politics, one segment of the upcoming broadcast will be particularly critical of the war in Iraq, judging by specific lines of dialogue cited by ABC News. Titled ‘The Day the Earth Was Stupid,’ the segment recalls the panic caused by Orson Welles’ 1938 radio broadcast of H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds, only this time aliens Kang and Kodos capitalize on the confusion by invading Springfield. At one point, Kang says, “Well, the Earthlings continue to resent our presence. You said we’d be greeted as liberators!” Kodos replies, “Don’t worry, we still have the people’s hearts and minds.” He then holds up a brain and a heart.
The extra-terrestrials continue to debate the decision to launch ‘Operation Enduring Occupation’ and make references to ‘weapons of mass disintegration.” And if all that was too subtle, Kang, looking over the ruins of Springfield, delivers the final line: “This sure is a lot like Iraq will be.”
Simpsons exec producer Al Jean is quoted saying the line may end up being cut from the actual broadcast, but not because FOX and its ultra-conservative chairman, Rupert Murdoch, has beef with it. Some of the show’s writers reportedly want it taken out because the parallels between the storyline and the real war are obvious enough.
Jean also denies that the episode is intended to influence votes in the midterm election, noting that episodes are often written a year in advance and that the majority of Americans already agree with the sentiments expressed in this latest visit to the Treehouse.