Television and Films


There are a list of movies that I have found that have be inspired by works of Edgar Allan Poe. Of course, the majority of these films are quite old but you may remember them:

  • The Tell Tale Heart (1928)
  • The Fall of the House of Usher (US, 1928)
  • La Chute de la maison Usher (France, 1928)
  • Murders in the Rue Morgue (1932)
  • The Black Cat (1934)
  • Maniac (1934)
  • The Crime of Dr. Crespi (1935)
  • The Raven (1935)
  • The Tell-Tale Heart (1941)
  • The Loves of Edgar Allan Poe (1942)
  • Mystery of Marie Roget (1942)
  • The Tell-Tale Heart (1953)
  • The Phantom of the Rue Morgue (1953)
  • House of Usher (1960)
  • The Tell-Tale Heart (1960)
  • The Pit and the Pendulum (1961)
  • The Premature Burial (1962)
  • Tales of Terror (1962)
  • The Raven (1963)
  • The Masque of the Red Death (1964)
  • Castle of Blood (1964)
  • The Tomb of Ligeia (1965)
  • Spirits of the Dead (Histoires extraordinaires)
  • The Murders in the Rue Morgue (1971)
  • The Spectre of Edgar Allan Poe (1974)
  • Vincent (1982)
  • Fool’s Fire (1992)
  • The Raven…Nevermore (1999)
  • The Raven (short film – 2003)
  • The Death of Poe (2006)
  • Nightmares from the Mind of Poe (2006)
  • In the 2008 horror film Saw V, Seth Baxter is placed in a trap which references The Pit and the Pendulum.


There have been plenty of references to Edgar Allan Poe in television. I grew up watching most of them as a kid, but at the same time I had no idea about the references until I started the research for this blog. I think it’s so interesting that most of these shows had a deeper meaning than the typical cartoon.

Here are some examples of Poe’s work in the television world:

There was a show on Disney Channel called Boy Meets World and the first season featured an episode called “The Fugitive”. Cory Mathews hides Shawn in his bedroom because of a prank he pulled involving cherry bombs and  a mailbox. Mr. Feeney reads “The Tell-Tale Heart” causing Cory to cry out a confession to the prank.

An episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation featured a case that referred to the combination of Poe’s stories ‘The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Cask of Amontillado”.

Futurama had an episode called “Bender’s Game” where Bender is admitted to a robot asylum and his relaxation therapy was to be strapped to a table, gagged, while rats chew through his bonds, and a pendulum swings, descending upon him. This is a reference to “The Pit and the  Pendulum”.

In Sabrina The Teenage Witch, an episode called ‘The Phantom Menace” aired where Hilda and Zelda brought Edgar Allan Poe to the present and invited him to celebrate Halloween with them.

The Simpsons has made several references to Poe’s works. The original “Treehouse of Horror” episode contains a segment in which James Earl Jones reads Poe’s poem “The Raven”, with Homer playing the narrator, Marge making a brief appearance as Lenore, and Bart as the raven. The poem is presented verbatim, though a few lines are cut, and Poe was actually credited as a co-writer of the segment. “Lisa’s Rival” features Lisa competing against a girl who recreates a scene from “The Tell-Tale Heart”. In the episode “Saturdays of Thunder”, a TV advert shows Poe’s tombstone being cleaned by Dr. Nick Riviera. In the episode “Lisa the Simpson”, the House of Usher is shown exploding in the fictional Fox show When Buildings Collapse. In the episode “Homer’s Triple Bypass”, Homer rams Hans Moleman driving a truck with a house on the back. The sign on the house reads “birthplace of Edgar Allan Poe”.


In an episode of Spongebob Squarepants, Mr. Krabs gives Spongebob a pair of squeaky boots said to be worn by the best fry cook ever. Because Spongebob loves the idea of where they came from, or so he thinks, he never takes them off. Unfortunately, Mr. Krabs gets annoyed by the squeaking the boots make and steals the m back from Spongebob. Mr. Krabs feels the guilt and begins hearing the squeaking everywhere. He can’t take the noise and the guilt so he confesses to stealing them and admitting they were  hidden under the floor boards of the Krusty Krab. It is a reference to “The Tell-Tale Heart”, but instead of pulling up the floor boards, he lifts the entire restaurant and gets the boots.


Tiny Toons has also made their version of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”. Sweetie the bird is saying she is an actress and says that “The Raven” was one of her best works. The show actually shows their own rendition of ‘The Raven” where Sweetie is playing the bird narrated by Vincent Prince. The words follow the same format, however they yield a different story.


Charlie Brown referenced the life of Edgar Allan Poe in the Snoopy Musical. Charlie Brown, Sally, Linus, Lucy, and Marcie sing about their teacher calling on them to answer a question on Edgar Allan Poe. In the song, they actually know some of his life, well everyone except Charlie Brown who is calling out works from other writers, but they claim they don’t know anything at all.


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