‘Scoobynatural’: The best surprise TV crossover episodes
The long-awaited Supernatural crossover episode with Scooby Doo premiered last year. We finally got our chance to catch Dean (Jared Padalecki) eating colossal subs with Scooby & Shaggy and Sam (Jensen Ackles) flirting with Daphne (of course).
Centered around Dean & Sam as they’re transported to the Scooby Doo world via their television to help the Scooby Gang solve a spooky mystery, the Scoobynatural episode was a perfect blend of two similar yet disparate TV universes. At PaleyFest, Supernatural executive producer Robert Singer – who also directed the episode – promised a whole lot of fun.
“As you’ll see from the very first shot in the episode, it’s light, but the idea that our guys hunt real ghosts and (on) Scooby it’s usually a person in a sheet, we’re very true to Supernatural. The Scooby Gang isn’t quite sure how to deal with it when they (think) it’s a real ghost.”
The episode inspired us to come up with nine other genius TV crossover episodes for your enjoyment. Check ’em out!
Bob’s Burgers meets Archer (2013)
Although the two shows share the voice acting talents of H. Jon Benjamin, it seemed unlikely the animated family comedy Bob’s Burgers would crossover with the irreverent spy cartoon Archer. But it did, and it was better than fans could have ever imagined. The crossover featured in the Archer’s S4 premiere, in which the hapless, drunken spy pulled an Eastern Promises and went incognito as the burger-flipping family man, Bob Belcher.
Sabrina the Teenage Witch meets Boy Meets World (1997)
Easily one of the most bizarre TV crossovers between two completely unrelated shows, this 1997 crossover saw various ABC TGIF programmes enjoying an awkward mashup.
After Sabrina Spellman’s (Melissa Joan Hart) sassy cat Salem eats a “time ball” – which we assume is the mystical 90s equivalent to a Tide Pod – he & Sabrina end up bouncing between various shows and eras. In Boy Meets World, it meant Cory (Ben Savage), Topanga (Danielle Fishel), and the gang were transported back in time to World War II, because why not?
Community meets Cougar Town (2011)
Shaking up the idea of what a crossover episode must contain,, Community cleverly deconstructed the concept in the most subtle way imaginable. In the Community episode “Critical Film Studies”, Abed (Danny Pudi) reveals he was invited to appear in the background of an episode of Cougar Town. Lo & behold, Abed appears in the background of the episode “Something Good Coming” as an extra who can’t help but involve himself in the scene.
The X-Files meets Cops (2000)
In S7’s stupendously-named episode “X-Cops”, writer Vince Gilligan (Breaking Bad) took great pleasure in mashing up the core tropes & elements of everyone’s favorite blue collar reality series with The X-Files’ “monster of the week” structure. There’s a werewolf involved and it’s as crazy as you could hope for.
The Simpsons meets The X-Files (1997)
Watching Mulder (David Duchovny) and Scully (Gillian Anderson) investigate aliens in Springfield was enough of a treat in itself, but it’s the little fun details of this strange crossover episode that really make it pop. From Mulder’s “sexy” FBI badge featuring a pinup portrait of himself to Scully hypnotically appraising Homer Simpson’s endless belly wobble as being “like a lava lamp”, the episode is a masterstroke of genius.
Alf meets Gilligan’s Island (1987)
In the Alf episode “The Ballad of Gilligan’s Island”, Bob Denver (Back to the Beach), Alan Hale Jr. (The Giant Spider Invasion), Dawn Wells (The Town That Dreaded Sundown), and Russell Johnson (Attack of the Crab Monsters) reprise their roles from a show cancelled twenty years earlier.
The dark twist? Their characters are revealed to have been stuck on that damn island the whole time and now they have a cat-devouring alien in a Hawaiian shirt to deal with.
Mad About You meets Friends (1994)
There were a fair few crossovers between Mad About You & Friends, including Jamie (Helen Hunt) showing up in Central Perk and mistaking Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) for her twin sister Ursula (who was a character in Mad About You).
However, the finest by far was an episode of Mad About You in which Jamie accidentally causes a New York City blackout (such japes)! A subsequent Friends episode saw the gang impacted by it, including Chandler (Matthew Perry) who was trapped in an ATM vestibule with supermodel Jill Goodacre (even more japes)!
Bones meets Sleepy Hollow (2015)
Weird yet delightful, this TV event saw oddballs Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) and Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) crossing paths to do something vaguely Halloween related. Honestly, the story wasn’t important – all that mattered was the TV duo worked surprisingly well in tandem with one another and gave fans an unexpected great time.
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit meets everything
Law & Order’s premium character – detective John Munch (Richard Belzer) – has shown up in a massive amount of inexplicable TV shows, including Arrested Development, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The X-Files, and The Wire. If you want to get really deep about it, that means Detective Munch, Titus Andromedon, the Bluth family, Jimmy McNulty, and the smoking man all exist in the same topsy turvy, surreal, and vaguely supernatural universe. Which is something we’re all too happy to imagine.