Each year, families gather around their televisions to see holiday-centered episodes of their favorite sitcoms. Seeing favorite tv characters tackle Christmas or Thanksgiving is sure to bring laughs, but some of the best are the Halloween-centric episodes. Whether it is witnessing characters try to scare one another, or seeing ridiculous costumes, Halloween episodes are always a highlight of the season. Today, we take a look at some of the best Halloween sitcom episodes of all time.
10. Friends – The One With the Halloween Party
Friends is no stranger to holiday-themed episodes, and Halloween is no exception. While there are a number of great Halloween episodes, the season 8 special is frequently on the top of fan-favorite lists. Some of the best gags are present here, such as a begrudging Chandler donning a pink bunny outfit, Ross’ ridiculous Spudnik attire, and of course some classic sibling rivalry between Phoebe and Ursula. Perhaps the highlight of the episode comes from Ross and Chandler’s arm wrestling competition. The two reach an awkward stalemate when neither one can beat the other. From hilarious jokes to even more hilarious costumes, it is no surprise why this is one of the best Halloween sitcom episodes.
9. Roseanne – BOO
The classic sitcom Roseanne became well-known for its Halloween episodes each year. The show prided itself on the Halloween specials, and this second season episode is no exception. The Conner family is obsessed with the holiday, and that obsession leaks to the audience. The treat of watching this episode is seeing the Conners turning their home into a haunted house for their neighborhood. Watching will make any viewer want to rush to the store to deck out their own home. Nostalgia for Halloween’s past is running rampant throughout the episode, making it mandatory viewing this spooky season.
8. Home Improvement – I Was a Teenage Taylor
Like Roseanne, the Tim Allen-led series Home Improvement was no stranger to Halloween-centric specials. Every one of the Halloween specials sees Tim try to retain his title as king of the Halloween pranks, even if this isn’t always the case. This season 6 episode highlights just how elaborate Taylor’s pranks get, and how quickly they can come crashing down. From mysterious visitors to heads in the microwave, this episode has all sorts of spooky moments. When it comes to Halloween sitcom episodes, few can compete with Home Improvement, and this is the best of the bunch.
7. Reba – The Best Lil’ Haunted House In Texas
Sitcoms featuring main characters claiming to be top dogs of Halloween pranks seem to have become a trope. This is the case with Reba, where the titular character does just that. This episode sees Reba prank and claims to be unprankable. She seems to be right until the entire family joins forces to make her think her son-in-law committed murder right in front of her house. This episode is oozing with Halloween goodness, and seeing Reba overjoyed to get her comeuppance makes it all worth it.
6. Full House – Divorce Court
Being the overly family-friendly show Full House is known for doesn’t lend itself to many scary moments. Still, the Halloween episodes manage to be mostly fun, including this season 3 episode. The main episode revolves around Stephanie and DJ arguing and “divorcing”. This isn’t where the episode really shines, however. After losing in a race to Danny, Jesse and Joey must wear matching pink dresses and wigs to the Tanner Halloween party. The true highlight of the episodes seeing DJ and Stephanie wear Batman and Joker costumes based on the Tim Burton movie which came out the year this episode aired. Seeing DJ wearing Jack Nicholson’s Joker attire is enough to make this a must-see Halloween sitcom episode.
5. The Office – Spooked
There are countless memorable Halloween episodes in The Office. Moments such as Michael firing Devon, the costume contest, and of course Dwight’s pumpkin head are among the greats. However, what makes this season 8 episode great, is Robert California. He spends the episode going around and learning about the employees’ greatest fears. He then ends the party by telling a nonsensical story, weaving in the office worker’s greatest fears. Seeing half the office terrified while the others are confused is prime Office goodness, the Halloween setting is just icing on the cake.
4. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air – Hex and the Single Guy
Throughout The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Will has inadvertently caused mayhem for the Banks family on multiple occasions. In this Halloween special, he causes them to become cursed. Hilary takes the family to a séance, believing she can contact her dead fiancé. Will’s constant mocking of the spiritualist causes him to curse the family with bad luck, and things quickly go from bad to worse. Carlton bleaches his hair, Phil is fired from his job, and Jeff announces his engagement to Hilary just to name a few. The ending is somewhat predictable, but the bulk of the episode is pure, spooky fun.
3. The Goldbergs – Mister Knifey Hands
Watching any of the Halloween specials from The Goldbergs makes one nostalgic for the Halloween seasons from one’s youth. However, one element makes this episode one of the best Halloween sitcom episodes. Beverly is upset with Adam for watching A Nightmare on Elm Street. She is then haunted by the dream demon himself. The real treat for horror fans is seeing Robert Englund reprise his iconic role of Freddy Krueger for the first time since 2003. Seeing Robert what he does best alone is worth checking this spooky episode.
2. Boy Meets World – And Then There Was Shawn
When thinking of great Halloween specials, this one is almost always brought up. Not only is it a great Halloween special, it is a mini slasher movie. The main characters all find themselves in detention, and someone is killing them off one by one. This episode is piggybacking on the success of films such as Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer. It even has a cameo from Jennifer Love Hewitt from the latter film. The ending is the same as the Fresh Prince Halloween episode, and it is just as predictable. Besides this, this episode is known as one of the best one-off specials of all time.
1. The Simpsons – Treehouse of Horror
This is cheating as it is many episodes as opposed to just one, but how could it not be added? Originally starting in 1990, the Treehouse of Horror episodes of The Simpsons release around Halloween every year. Each episode features three non-canon stories that see the iconic family in various horror and sci-fi stories. There are a few parodies such as The Shining, but most of them are fully original. The episodes frequently feature fan-favorite characters dying in gruesome ways, enforcing that the episodes are self-contained. Every year Simpsons fans look forward to Treehouse of Horror, and it wouldn’t be Halloween without it.