Like fellow animated sitcom The Simpsons, Bob’s Burgers celebrates Halloween with a special episode every year. While The Simpsons celebrate the season by going totally non-canon, Bob’s Burgers cleverly works the horror theme into the show’s regular setting. These episodes are always popular with fans because they give the writers and animators a chance to stretch their creativity and dig into their big bag of horror and Halloween references, all while building on the show’s characters and their relationships.
In fact, a Bob’s Burgers Halloween marathon is a great way to celebrate the spookiest season of the year, as they present fun Halloween ideas without the horror associated with regular horror movies. If you’re looking to celebrate Halloween with the Belchers, here are the best Halloween-themed Bob’s Burgers episodes.
9. “Teen-A-Witch” (Season 7, Episode 3)
The fifth Halloween episode focused on Tina and her school issues. Tina attempts to win the school’s costume contest but is devastated when Tammy steals her idea. She ends up confiding in Mr. Ambrose, who gives Tina a spellbook and tells her she can get what she wants via supernatural means. Tina uses this spellbook to cast spells that she thinks will help her day-to-day life, but she quickly finds that being a witch isn’t as easy as she first thought.
In the restaurant, Bob sets out to solve the mystery of who keeps stealing his carved pumpkins only to find a very unexpected culprit. Riffing on many classic Halloween films like The Craft, “Teen-A-Witch” is as unique as it is a rare chance to see Tina as the villain.
8. “Pig Trouble In Little Tina” (Season 10, Episode 4)
Another Tina-focused episode, season 10’s Halloween offering focuses on the trauma of biology class. When Tina’s class has to dissect a pig fetus, she finds the whole experience horrible but still joins in with her classmates’ mockery of the fetus. However, things take a turn for the spooky when the ghost of the pig starts to haunt and torment Tina.
While this happens, Bob and Linda deal with Bob’s earwax problem, with expectedly wacky and surprisingly disgusting results. One of the grosser Halloween episodes, “Pig Trouble In Little Tina” is fun because it takes a relatable childhood trauma and uses Tina to take it to the extreme while also giving viewers some classic Bob and Linda banter.
7. “Heartbreak Hotel-Oween” (Season 11, Episode 4)
The most recent Halloween installment of Bob’s Burgers sees the kids help a new character. It also features them attempting to pull off a traditionally wacky revenge plot. While delivering a burger to an old hotel, the kids meet a weird old woman who says she comes to the hotel every year to do a seance. She explains that she hopes this seance will let her contact her deceased husband. However, this seance has an ulterior motive, as the woman believes her husband cheated on her and plans to use the ritual to banish him to hell. The kids help solve the woman’s mystery while also getting revenge on a house that refused to give Tina candy several years previously.
Bob, meanwhile, has to confront his fear of blood when he tries to donate blood at a vampire-themed blood bank. Featuring a fun story with plenty of twists and turns, this episode is great for longtime fans as it features callbacks to several long-running jokes and plot elements.
6. “Fort Night” (Season 4, Episode 2)
The kids team up with Andy and Ollie Pesto to create the best group costume ever⏤a gigantic Chinese dragon⏤under the assumption that they’ll get twice the amount of candy. However, Tina isn’t sure as she feels that she has grown out of trick-or-treating.
On the way home, the kids and their other friend Darryl decide to go to the cardboard fort that the Belcher kids have constructed in a nearby alleyway. When a truck blocks the exit to the box fort, the gang becomes trapped and soon finds themselves being tormented by Millie Frock, one of Louise’s classmates. Millie finds pleasure in keeping the kids trapped, and soon tensions start to rise as the kids try to find a way out of the fort. A clever take on many classic horror tropes as well as a fun parody of bottle episodes, “Fort Night” twists the usual Bob’s Burgers format to fantastic effect.
5. “The Hauntening” (Season 6, Episode 3)
Season six’s Halloween episode features tributes to several classic horror movies. While on a family trip to a haunted house, Louise secretly reveals that she hasn’t been scared before. However, Bob and Linda plan to change this, as the haunted house is actually one they’ve designed themselves.
After going through the house, the family discovers that their car has a flat tire, which means that they’re now trapped. From there, various spooky happenings occur as it turns out that the house is more haunted than they first believed, forcing the family to run for their lives. A fun episode that focuses on Louise, “The Hauntening” is charming and offers a hilarious look at the family’s relationship dynamics.
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4. “The Wolf of Wharf Street” (Season 8, Episode 3)
When Bob breaks his leg, he is given pain pills, but these pills don’t agree with him and cause him to act erratically. After seeing a news report about a local legend called the Wonder Wolf, Bob’s behavior gets out of hand.
At the same time, the kids are heading out to trick-or-treat with Linda even though they’re not happy about their Mom tagging along with them. When they hear a howl in the forest, Linda tries to act cool around the kids by helping them track down the legendary Wonder Wolf. Back at home, a delirious Bob ends up believing that Teddy is actually a werewolf and tries to flee, forcing Teddy to try and keep Bob in the house lest he hurt himself further.
A hilarious episode featuring two very unique riffs on the werewolf concept, “The Wolf Of Wharf Street” is a memorable episode that features multiple hilarious moments. It also continues the series’ tradition of Bob having delusions while under the effects of certain substances, making this episode feel like a companion to other classics like “Dawn of the Peck” and “Burgerboss.”
3. “Full Bars” (Season 3, Episode 2)
The first Halloween-themed episode of the series didn’t arrive until the third season. “Full Bars” features a simple but fun story that shows why these episodes became a yearly fixture. The kids ask Bob to let them go trick-or-treating unsupervised for the first time. Bob agrees, and Teddy says that since the parents are free, they can come to his Halloween party.
The kid’s night doesn’t go well at first⏤the treats they get are lousy⏤so they decide to hop on a ferry to King’s Head Island. The kids think that this posh, upper-class community will naturally give out better treats, but a local tradition soon sees this trip take a turn for the worse. At the same time, Teddy’s Halloween party takes a strange turn, as Teddy’s hosting skills are far from usual.
While this episode is simple, it’s also a lot of fun, capturing both the childhood joy of massive trick-or-treat hauls and the adult tedium of terribly-organized Halloween parties. After watching this episode, it becomes clear why the Halloween special became a Bob’s Burgers tradition.
2. “Nightmare on Ocean Avenue Street” (Season 9, Episode 4)
Childhood and adult Halloween clash once again in season 9’s Halloween episode. The kids are trick-or-treating once again, but things take a turn for the weird when they find that someone is stealing everyone’s candy bags, forcing the kids to put on their detective hats and find the culprit.
Back at the restaurant, Bob and Linda get caught up in Teddy’s war with Glenn, another handyman. Both want to have the best Halloween display and Teddy starts to decorate the restaurant in an attempt to come out on top, but this obsession quickly gets out of hand as Teddy’s desire to win and his shoddy props cause problems for Bob and Linda.
A fun episode featuring two contrasting storylines, “Nightmare On Ocean Avenue Street” is also jammed full of fun horror references, including some memorable jokes about the family’s weird taste in costumes.
1. “Tina And The Real Ghost” (Season 5, Episode 2)
Tina and Halloween are a perfect match, and she is once again thrust into the spotlight in “Tina and the Real Ghost.” When Bob calls an exterminator to deal with a basement bug problem, the exterminator tells the family that the basement is haunted and that he refuses to deal with the bugs until the ghost is gone.
Tina and the kids use an ouija board to contact the ghost, but when the spirit says that it is a teenage boy called Jeff, Tina quickly develops a crush, leading to chaos. Unfortunately, the news of a haunting also attracts ghost hunters to the restaurant and these hunters quickly test Bob’s patience.
A brilliant episode that focuses on the kids and their various relationship dynamics, “Tina and the Real Ghost” is a charming episode that uniquely builds on established character traits, making it the best of Bob’s Burgers’ Halloween offerings.