I can’t believe that Futurama is over, or that I’d be saying that in 2013. I remember watching this show when it premiered after the Simpsons in 1999. I wasn’t impressed with the early episodes and as I discovered girls, I briefly gave up television for a time. Years later I rediscovered the show on Adult Swim, watching it every night. Looking over the long list of episodes, I had a difficult time picking out just 5. After some soul searching, I was able to whittle down my favorite picks of the many adventures of the Planet Express crew. You might notice a theme with the ones I picked.
5. Jurassic Bark
I was surprised at how many episodes of the show really tugged at my heart strings. While I think the first two acts are average for the show, the ending more then makes up for it. Every time I see Seymour sitting outside waiting for Fry, I tear up. I have a variety of reasons for my later picks, but this would be the first episode I would show a new fan. The raw emotion it generates is palpable.
4. The Late Phillip J. Fry
For me there was a distinct difference from the first 4 seasons, the later Comedy Central Episodes, and the movies for that matter. While each group had their highlights, I thought there more misses on average during the CC episodes. “The Late Phillip J. Fry” was easily the best of the season, if not the rest of the Comedy Central episodes. Doing what they do best, the writers told another time travel story featuring Fry, Farnsworth, and Bender stuck in the future looking for a backwards time machine. The song “In the year 252525” is worth it alone.
3. Time Keeps on Slippin’
This was the first time travel episode I lucked upon. Futurama has always been a smartly written show by science minded people. This element mixed with time travel is a win in my book. As the title stated, time was slipping due to Farnsworth borrowing some chronitons to accelerate his mutants to defeat the Globetrotters in basketball. Random time skips opened the door for some of the best jokes. The episode ended with another heartfelt moment where Fry moved the stars for Leela to show how much he loved her.
2. Roswell That Ends Well
One of my favorite plot devices is time travel, and I absolutely abhor when it’s done poorly. Thankfully, Futurama nailed it every time they tried, and no better example of that is in “Roswell That Ends Well.” Mixing history, conspiracy theories, and paradoxes, everything was firing on all cylinders. The story culminated with Fry becoming his own grandfather. Not only was this hilarious on its own, it was used in “The Day the Earth Stood Stupid” and “The Why of Fry.” Two great episodes that just missed the cut.
“First I was God, then I met God.” Poignantly spoken by everyone’s favorite robot, Bender. Everything in this episode was straightforward, and the message it conveyed at the end was enlightening and satisfying. Bender learned the perils of leadership, governing, and religion. The ideas here were simply put, promoting acceptance and peace. “When you do things right, people won’t be sure you’ve done anything at all.”
What are your favorite episodes? Time travel ones your favorite too? Comment below!
“Bender’s Big Score” was the best movie.