It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas — but only where The Simpsons live. The long-running Fox series will celebrate the holidays Sunday, Dec. 15 (8/7c) in predictably screwy fashion: Thanks to global warming, there's no snow anywhere in the United States except in Springfield, where a radiation leak at the town's nuclear-power plant has resulted in lots of local white stuff. Cue the price gouging.
"Springfield is suddenly booming with tourists who want a traditional white Christmas and that means all the prices are jacked up," exec producer Al Jean tells TV Guide Magazine. "To cope with the new high cost of shopping, Marge turns the Simpson home into a B&B."
Of course, she gets no cooperation from lazy Homer. "Rather than take down the Halloween decorations, he tries to repurpose them for Christmas," says Jean. "That means there's a spider in the manger, the jack-o'-lanterns are shaped into a snowman and the skeleton is wearing a Santa suit."
Also look for an extended holiday title sequence, epic enough to rival the one created for the show last Halloween by director-horror maestro Guillermo del Toro. "Just replace the Frankenstein in that one with a Santa Claus and you'll get an idea of where we're going!" says Jean, who admits that Simpsons Christmas episodes require a juggling act. "It's always tricky. Half the audience wants irreverence. The other half wants sweet moments. We try to do both while always staying true to our holiday message: You should give people expensive presents."
There's more twisted Christmas that same night on Fox: The Belcher clan on Bob's Burgers (8:30/7:30c) goes searching for a last-minute tree and gets trailed by a scary truck shaped like a big candy cane. On Family Guy (9/8c), the annual Christmas carnival is cancelled by the Scrooge-like Carter Pewterschmidt. And there'll be no silent night on American Dad. (9:30/8:30c) The legendary Christmas demon Minstrel Krampus (voiced by Danny Glover) kidnaps Steve — and that sends Stan and Roger to the North Pole to rescue him!