The episode’s title is a reference to the 1969 psychological drama film, They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?, directed by Sydney Pollack and based on the 1935 novel of the same name by Horace McCoy.
Set during the Depression, the film focuses on a group of people desperate to win a dance marathon where they are ruthlessly exploited, and stars Jane Fonda, Michael Sarrazin, and Susannah York. The title comes from the fact that horses are shot once they break their legs to put them out of their misery. The film was a commercial success, and is regarded as one of the best films of its era. It has aged well, and is still finding admirers.
As in the film, this episode is about a dance marathon – although it isn’t nearly as dramatic as the one in the film.
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