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The Design Of Futurama's Hypnotoad Was A Subtle Nod To The Simpsons
First appearing in the episode “The Day the Earth Stood Stupid,” the Hypnotoad is one of the funnier running gags on “Futurama,” with the showrunner loving it so much that he included an episode of “Everybody Loves Hypnotoad” on one of the show’s DVDs. In an interview, the designer of Hypnotoad, Mark Ervin, revealed its design was a nod to an episode of “The Simpsons.”
The Hypnotoad’s eyes were inspired by a specific moment in an episode of “The Simpsons” where Bart ate too much sugar. Ervin explained, “I’d previously worked on ‘The Simpsons’ episode ‘Boy-Scoutz’ n the Hood,’ where Bart and Milhouse get all amped up on Squishees and have these crazy eyes. It was a bit of a nod to that.”
As for its appearance, Ervin looked to the Argentine horned frog, also known as the Pacman frog, as a model, making the mind-controlling amphibian not a toad at all. The Hypnotoad appeared on multiple episodes of “Futurama” and was featured in an introductory segment of a “Treehouse of Horror” “Simpsons” episode directed by Guillermo del Toro.