“The Simpsons” is no stranger to homages to pop culture in their couch gags, with “Breaking Bad” being a prime example, but in Sunday’s (Jan. 12) episode, the series dedicated a portion of the story to someone special.
During the episode “Married to the Blob,” Homer and a new friend have what looks like a wine-induced hallucination that lands them in an anime version of Springfield. In reality, the sequence is a tribute to legendary animator Hayao Miyazaki, who announced his retirement from Studio Ghibli back in September.
The scene is filled with references to his various movies, including “Princess Mononoke,” “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” “Howl’s Moving Castle” and “Spirited Away.” His final film, “The Wind Rises,” will be released in U.S. theaters on February 21.
Take a look at the scene above to see how many of the references you recognize. The three-headed bully dragon is pretty fantastic.