Top 10 Musical TV Episodes

Script written by Tiffany Ezuma. Wouldn’t life be a lot more fun if it were a musical? In this video, WatchMojo.com counts down our picks for the top 10 musical TV episodes. For this list, we’ve picked the most original and well-received musical episodes. And we’re talking shows that went all-in and dedicated a full episode to song. For all you “How I Met Your Mother” fans, we had to exclude “Girls vs. Suits” since it’s only the one song. Special thanks to our users Nichelle Phoenix Perez, Andrew A. Dennison, Rachel Bloom, mcali2532, sarahjessicaparkerth, jf1999, Kat Willis, Joe Hunstone, Josh Klatt, wolfspirit103, James Kerslake, Spideyfan-0913, Jack Gray, Symmone Brown and Peyton Givan for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Tiffany Ezuma.

Top 10 Musical TV Episodes


Wouldn’t life be a lot more fun if it were a musical? Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 musical TV episodes.

For this list, we’ve picked the most original and well-received musical episodes. And we’re talking shows that went all-in and dedicated a full episode to song. For all you “How I Met Your Mother” fans, we had to exclude “Girls vs. Suits” since it’s only the one song.

#10: “The Devil’s Hands Are Idle Playthings”
“Futurama” (2003)

As one of the best-reviewed “Futurama” episodes, and its last before it was brought back five-years later, this musical was inspired by the saying “idle hands are the devil’s playthings,” and the story of Faust, who sells his soul to the devil. Paralleling that, Fry tries to win over Leela with his holophonor skills. When he fails miserably, he enlists the Robot Devil to give him a hand transplant. Zany? Yes, but the plot matches well with the opera-inspired songs written for it.

#9: “The Bitter Suite”
“Xena: Warrior Princess” (1998)

A campy sci-fi/fantasy series about a warrior princess seems like the perfect setting for a musical – right? Well, bizarre or not, “Xena”’s trek into musical territory worked surprisingly well, as it followed the titular heroine and her companion Gabrielle to the Land of Illusia. Once there, they must confront their demons and each other to overcome their problems and work as a team once more. With poignant lyrics and emotion-filled musical numbers, the season-3 episode is an oddly moving chapter in the show’s history, which earned two Emmy nominations.

#8: “Simpsoncalifragilisticexpiala(Annoyed Grunt)cious”
“The Simpsons” (1997)

Everything on “The Simpsons” errs on the side of the ridiculous, so even a musical isn’t a surprise. Marge decides to bring on a nanny to make their lives better, and the one she hires happens to be a real-life Mary Poppins – sorry, Shari Bobbins. And, even though the real Mary Poppins, Julie Andrews, was supposed to perform the role but didn’t; it’s still one of our faves. Ms. Bobbins quickly fixes the dysfunctional family, but not before their antics turn her into an alcoholic.

#7: “Daria!-The Musical”
“Daria” (1999)

Daria is the last girl you’d expect to see in a musical, which is precisely why this episode works so well. With a potential hurricane on the horizon, the residents of Lawndale to break out in song to express their concern. Unlike most musicals, the topics of these songs are banal and average – which is in step with show’s theme of suburban life. With all inner feelings coming out in song, this episode was not a fan-favorite – but hey, seriously, who doesn’t love a good tune?

#6: “Variety”
“Oz” (2002)

A prison seems like the last place for a musical to happen, so viewers were pleasantly surprised by this episode. Presented as a variety show, but with many of the inmates expressing their interior thoughts through song, this “Oz” installment surprises us with the skills of some of its stars. Though the premise is over-the-top, the episode works well because of the emotion it brings out in the characters. It also has some great dance numbers reminiscent of “Jailhouse Rock” and “Cell Block Tango.”

#5: “Mayhem of the Music Meister!”
“Batman: The Brave and the Bold” (2009)

If you’re going to take over the world with song, leave it to Neil Patrick Harris to be the voice to do it. As the Music Meister, he plots to control others through music and take over the United Nations’ communications satellite. The episode shines in scenes that mimic the dance fight from “West Side Story” and the music of “The Phantom of the Opera.” Cartoon or not, this creative episode was met with critical acclaim and was even nominated for an Emmy.

#4: “That ‘70s Musical”
“That ‘70s Show” (2002)

Leave it to the foreign kid to have an overactive imagination! During the episode, Fez worries about his role in the school musical and his friends’ opinions – more specifically, he doesn’t think they’ll show up to support him. Awwww! To decrease his anxiety, he has elaborate fantasies of the whole gang performing musical numbers to express themselves. The episode works because they use great ‘70s hits like “Love Hurts,” “Happy Together,” and “Shake Your Groove Thing,” in a comedic, theatrical way.

#3: “Regional Holiday Music”
“Community” (2011)

Community is a show based on making fun of pop culture and it’s no secret that series creator, Dan Harmon, dislikes “Glee.” This episode parodies the popular TV show after Greendale’s own glee club gets sick, and the study group is asked to fill in for them. Instead of singing classic Christmas songs, the gang comes up with wacky tunes like, “Christmas Infiltration,” a song about Troy wanting to celebrate the holiday despite being a Jehovah’s Witness.

#2: “My Musical”
“Scrubs” (2007)

A patient comes into the hospital with a peculiar condition where she hears everything in song. To help solve her problem, Turk and J.D. assure her that “Everything Comes Down to Poo,” one of the episode’s many comedic songs. Benefiting from the guest-star-power of Stephanie D’Abruzzo, a well-known Broadway star, as the patient, this is one of the most well-received episodes “Scrubs,” because it earned it five Emmy nominations, and one win. We like to think “Guy Love” put it over the top.

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- “Song Beneath the Song” “Grey’s Anatomy” (2011)
- “Brown Betty” “Fringe” (2010)
- “Influenza: The Musical” “Even Stevens” (2002)

#1: “Once More, with Feeling”
“Buffy the Vampire Slayer” (2001)

Joss Whedon isn’t afraid to take chances – as this episode of Buffy proves. After a demon works his magic, the people of Sunnydale are forced to reveal their inner thoughts through song. The music in the episode is lyrically complex; particularly in the Buffy’s song “Going Through the Motions,” which is about being unfulfilled with life after returning from the dead. The episode may open an emotional can of worms but it still retains the wit and charm the show is known for.

Do you agree with our list? Which show is on your must-watch TV list? For more can’t miss Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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