"A lonely heart, a wandering eye, an empty stomach, a shoulder to cry on - this is what makes us, us. Welcome to Night Vale."Cecil recounts the strange disappearance of some of Night Vale's winged, angelic, and unknowably hierarchical citizens, before launching into the feature story: helicopters are hovering in the skies above Night Vale. Not the normal Black Helicopters of the World Government or the Blue Helicopters of the Sheriff's Secret Police. No, these are Yellow Helicopters, and what do they want? Why have they come to town? Also, some community health tips, an update on Night Vale High's quarterback Michael Sandero, and a campaign message from Hiram McDaniels.
Tropes present in Yellow Helicopters include:
- Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: Intern Vithya.
- Barrier Maiden: Old Woman Josie, if her words to Cecil are any indication:"If I fall, so does this town..."
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: "I care about our small business owners. I care about the future of our children. I care about the future of our small children business owners."
- Call-Back: Yellow Helicopters can be seen as a direct sequel to The Sandstorm.
- Hypocritical Humor: Hiram Mc Daniels, "who is literally a five-headed dragon", says in his campaign ad that you shouldn't vote for someone without a mouth because it would be too weird.
- Intergenerational Friendship: Between Cecil and Old Woman Josie. They used to go bowling.
- Mega Corp.: StrexCorp
- Mood Whiplash: Hiram McDaniels's cheerful campaign message in the middle of an otherwise heavy episode.
- No Name Given: Double subverted with The Man in the Tan Jacket. His name is Emmet! or Earnest. Or maybe Everett... Hmm, maybe not.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Cecil, who has up to now shown no hesitation about acting as the Mouth of Sauron for the City Council and Secret Police, is audibly uncomfortable when he has to assure his listeners that StrexCorp is nothing to be afraid of.
- Put on a Bus: Old Woman Josie's angel friends.
- Red Shirt: The interns, as per usual. Vithya seems to be unique however, having been apparently chosen for an angelic mission. She ascends to heaven rather than simply dying, disappearing, or becoming part of a Hive Mind in an enchanted forest.
- Tyrant Takes the Helm: StrexCorp takes over Night Vale and buys out Night Vale Community Radio.
- Wham Episode: Just take a look at all those spoilers...
"Today's Proverb: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never quite describe the pain."