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Big Ten Power Poll: The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Edition

Ethan Miller

In what has somewhat become tradition, it's time to do a Halloween themed power poll. Unfortunately, to do unique Halloween Power Poll's, I was forced to think outside of the box. First I thought, "Hey, maybe I'll do costumes." After the fourth or fifth page of descriptions like, "Make your bust look big in this 'adult' Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle outfit," I decided I needed a new approach.

I couldn't do monsters, monster movies, or candy, and that takes out the easy ones. Then it struck me. There was one tradition alive that I could hit two of my favorite things at the same time: The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror! A tradition in its own right, I went through and watched probably 11 or 12 episodes. In what was quite literally seven or so hours of writing and brainstorming, I give you this week's Power Poll.

As a general point of order, we had 14 people vote this week. Points remain 14 for a first place vote, 1 point for a last place vote, and everything else follows pattern. So let's get to it!


homega man

1. Michigan State Spartans - The Homega Man (Treehouse of Horror VIII)

196 Points || 14 First Place Votes || High 1 || Low 1 || Last Week 1

At the beginning of the year, it seemed like all of your friends got nuked. Any hopes you had of survival and coming out on top of the heap was dismal and for all you knew, the only people around you were zombies. So what did you do? You got really excited and made sure that you took out anyone and everyone, and you got all of those checklists finished. Now that you know a few of your closest friends are still alive, it's time to get down to business.


2. Nebraska Cornhuskers - Attack of the 50 ft Eyesores (Treehouse of Horror VI)

177 Points || H 2 || L 3 || LW 3

This season seemed to be all about those giant gimmicks. Cats, viral videos, gigantic new fancy signs with fireworks and such. It worked for you, but most people assumed that those gimmicks would turn on you and you'd get destroyed by them so they ignored you. Well, after doing so, you kind of just quietly did your thing and those 'distractions' have proven to be no big deal. You're winning the battles week in and week out. So, it seems the answer is to just not look at you and you'll be fine? Sure, let's go with that.


3. Ohio State Buckeyes - The Devil and Homer Simpson (Treehouse of Horror IV)

173 Points || H 2 || L 3 || LW 2

After last weekend, we're pretty sure you made a deal with the devil for your soul. Now, the upside to this deal is that you're still in the running for the playoffs, and honestly, your punishment ends up being something along the lines of being force fed JT Barrett while Braxton waits in the wings. The downside? Even if you do happen to make it out of this season unscathed, we're guessing that your punishment will be Braxton Miller going to Florida next year to play QB for new Gator coach Dan Mullen. This is what happens when you make a deal with the devil.


4. Wisconsin Badgers - Nightmare on Evergreen Terrace (Treehouse of Horror VI)

153 Points || H 4 || L 5 || LW 6

You've been overlooked a lot this season, and if we're completely honest, it seems like you're kind of just a nightmare for a lot of us. Like a really scary red machine that can destroy us from within. Then we wake up and remember that was only... /Wisconsin scored again... dammit. Anyhow, the thing we're overlooking is that you're sort of a big deal again and if you've gotten past your deficiencies, specifically being bottled up by a pacifier, it looks like you'll be in the drivers seat to the end.


5. Maryland Terrapins - Homer^3 (Treehouse of Horror VI)

129 Points || H 5 || L 8 || LW 5

"I'm somewhere where I don't know where I am." - Homer

This pretty much sums up how things are going for you this year. In a lot of ways, your new surroundings have been fun and interesting. The extra dimensions are new and exciting, and we'd be lying if we weren't impressed by how well you acclimated at times. On the other hand, it's scary, your old friends have no idea where you went and why, and when you try to explain it all, you just get more confused. Your world has changed. Might as well enjoy an erotic cake and roll with it.

6. Iowa Hawkeyes - Fly vs. Fly (Treehouse of Horror VIII)

125 Points || H 5 || L 8 || LW 7

It sure does feel like you got a cutrate transporter that tried to mix two disparate organic ideas into an amalgam of scariness, huh? Or, to put it another way, this is not only a parody of existing horror tropes, but rather a satirical look at what happens when you mix Greg Davis and Kirk Ferentz. The recent play of the offense is reflected by two backends merging into one cat/dog butt. Funny enough, you end up okay in the end, so that's fun.

7. Minnesota Golden Gophers - Terror at 5 1/2 Feet (Treehouse of Horror IV)

117 Points || H 4 || L 10 || LW 4

You saw the impending doom. You really did. When you looked out the window, you knew there was a little monster waiting to get you. Sure, you told yourself that the Gophering wouldn't happen this time. You were wrong and now the only solace you take is that you were right. You didn't react well, but you were right. I guess there's nothing to be ashamed of in that, right? (Note: probably quite a bit of shame in losing to Illinois. Sorry about that.)


8. Northwestern Wildcats - The Monkey's Paw (Treehouse of Horror II)

90 Points || H 7 || L 10 || LW 8

You've gotta be careful what you wish for. Fame and fortune sound great, but there is always a downside in these stories - and you were warned. Since the height of expectations last year, things haven't exactly looked too bright, and now there are grumblings about the wishes you made. Sure, some of them have probably put you in a better situation long term, and world peace - much like consistent bowl games - are a happier place, but if you're not careful, the whole thing ends up being terrible and you just find yourself jealous of the neighbors.


9. Penn State Nittany Lions - The Thing and I (Treehouse of Horror VII)

86 Points || H 5 || L 14 || LW 13

This year, you're basically a siamese twin that was ripped apart at birth to save one side of the ball. You've got the good side - the defense - and the bad side - the offense. As such, you've more or less locked the bad side of the ball in the attic and fed it fish heads and neglected its general well being. At least that's pretty much all I can come up with when I watch Penn State football.


10. Rutgers Scarlet Knights - Stop the World, I Want to Goof Off (Treehouse of Horror XIV)

75 Points || H 8 || L 11 || LW 9

You probably wish you had a magic stopwatch that let you take a quick breather after the last couple of weeks. Unfortunately, that only exists in cartoons, and you will have to face a Wisconsin team that might make you feel like you're running in slow motion. Lucky for you, the mobs aren't out in full force yet and all the messing with the fabric of time and space and Gary Nova seems to not be lasting effects. That's not so bad. Win one more and you'll be bowling. Nothing to complain about there.


11. Purdue Boilermakers - The Genesis Tub

50 Points || H 9 || L 14 || LW 10

In what was actually sort of a mean incident - that is, a loss - we've learned that you are an evolving civilization that is quickly going through all the stages of becoming a real football team. We wouldn't be surprised if you hit the Star Wars phase sooner, rather than later. This evolution hasn't quite yet gotten you to the point where you are favored in any given game, but we're actually thinking you might win some games. That's a huge plus, right? Hazell is looking like God to you now, and that seems weird considering his old ties to Satan - Jim Tressel. Just keep on doing what you need to do to make Coach Hazell happy and good things will come your way.


12. Michigan Wolverines - Time and Punishment (Treehouse of Horror V)

37 Points || H 11 || L 14 || LW 12

This season all started with that time you got your hand stuck in a toaster and no matter how hard you tried, you just kept getting shocked and burned and smothered by Notre Dame a toaster. Sure, you can try to say you're going back in time to fix things, but instead of actually getting anywhere, it just seems like you're making your situation worse. Maybe you'll get lucky and end up 'close enough' by the end, but with the way things are looking, that doesn't seem likely.


13. Illinois Fighting Illini - Reaper Madness (Treehouse of Horror XIV)

33 Points || H 12 || L 14 || LW 14

Man, it's really felt like you were the harbinger of death as of late. Everywhere you went, lots of sadness appeared, mostly of your own doing. The funny thing is, somewhere along the line you decided you were sick of this vocation and managed to trip somebody up so that your Saturdays didn't suck. You had to cut it pretty close, but being clever wins the day every once in a while.

14. Indiana Hoosiers - Life's a Glitch, Then You Die (Treehouse of Horror X)

29 Points || H 10 || L 14 || LW 11

It always starts out so promising, doesn't it? Everything is fixed, the computers are fine, and then one little glitch - or a rather major one when we're talking about *cough* defenses - takes the entire grid down. Lucky for you there seems to be a couple of rockets to save you. Unlucky for you, it looks like one has Tevin Coleman and the other has the spots for your Defensive Coordinators. Hey, someone will have to pay for the turn this season has taken, and it won't be the offensive guys.


Disclaimer time! The Simpsons, and Treehouse of Horror, is a TV Show that runs on Fox and has a million reruns out there, specifically on FXX which seems to be a station devoted to things like the Simpsons. It's a hilarious show with some of the greatest writing of all time. You should watch it, even now, because there are still great jokes to be had. Oh, and if you're not on the #TeamGoesForever bandwagon, just watch the back catalogs. Always great stuff. For the record, I do not claim to own the Simpsons or anything, but I feel like this was a really good subject. Good times will be had by all.