Monday, August 8, 2011

"Mobius Dick" (S08E08): Futurama Episode Review

Dr. Zoidberg has hair!
Readings were high on the weirdness scale this week in Futurama's latest episode. It had many of the elements typical to Futurama, a "space adventure" some might say. Here's a quick summary of the plot: Professor Farnsworth holds a vigil for his first crew that never returned from making a dangerous delivery. The current Planet Express crew is sent on a mission to pickup a statue dedicated to the first crew, they are sent through the "Bermuda Tetrahedron". Leela becomes obsessed when she meets Möbius dick, a space whale whose bowels are shaped like a mobius strip. Leela & crew get eaten and somehow make it back alive, bringing back the original crew to New New York.

Sure, there are lots of cultural references and tidbits in this episode that have already been pointed out in abundance, but I didn't feel a whole lot of magic here. Futurama has done some really good spoofs before (S02E01: "A Flight to Remember"). Spoofing classic literature doesn't guarantee a successfully nerdy episode.  Aside from cracking some really good jokes and some great Zoidberg character development, the episode was an empty remake of Moby Dick played by the cast of Planet Express. In "A Flight to Remember", it was the characters that told the story of Futurama's spoof of "The Titanic", and not the other way around.

Although there might have been some lack of originality, the rest of the episode did a great job holding itself up as a proper Futurama episode. This is the reason I cannot call this a "bad episode".  There were plenty of redeeming qualities and a lot of things that made me laugh.  Leela's grammatical prowess over contractions made me LOL quite literally.  We had yet another deranged meeting full of dubious dialogue at Planet Express. Example- Fry: "...I knew you had other crews, but you never told us you had a 'first' crew".  You have to pay attention and listen to the profound stupidity in that line, classic Futurama! And of course, like in every episode the slapstick of repetition was used ("or die trying" and "Bermuda Tetrahedron"). And who doesn't like Zoidberg character development? See quotes below for quotes describing Zoidberg's hip and cool youth. In the end, although it didn't amaze me, I think the episode held its own weight.

Favorite and Notable Quotes from "Mobious Dick":
Opening Line: "Featuring Sparky, the Invisible Ele"

Professor Farnsworth: I was out on the widow's walk keeping a hopeless vigil for the return of my first delivery crew. It's been 50 years since they disappeared.
Fry: Huh? I knew you had other crews, but you never told us you had a 'first' crew.
Professor: ...I remember it like it was interesting.

After Flashback:
Hermes: Zoidberg was popular!?
Amy: Zoidberg had hair!?
Professor: I never said he had hair, if you chose to imagine him that way that's your business.

Lando's Woman:: crying:: Lando, don't forget about me and junior.
Lando: I won't honey, or die trying.

Hermes: Incredible, Zoidberg had friends??!
Zoidberg: It was a different time.

Amy: I thought you said he didn't have any hair?
Professor: Yes, but something he saw on that mission traumatized him so severely he grew hair, just so it could turn white.

Leela: You can count on us Professor, we'll get that monument here on time...or die trying.

Bender: Supposing we're not stupid, what kinda stupid mission is this?

Alien: Here you go, in memory of the first Planet Express ship and its crew.
Leela: Hang on, "it's" shouldn't have an apostrophe. This means "and it is crew", what the Hell is wrong with you?!
Alien: It's a minor error lady, i mean we're space aliens, it's a miracle we can even speak English.
Leela: The miracle is that I'm not kicking your ass. I insist you recarve the entire statue correctly.
Alien: Okay okay. Hey Charlie! Hack over another block of ivory!

Leela: Brace yourselves, it's tickle me Elmo's fire.

Hermes: Space walk people, space walk for your lives!!

Leela: Raise the solar sails, i'm going after that mobius dick.

Amy: Leela, we need to talk, you've gone from crazy like a Fox to crazy like Fox news!

Hermes: She's diving into the 4th dimension.
Amy: We have to cut the rope!
Leela: Negative Sailor Moon, we're going for a sleigh ride.

Leela: What's going on?
Lando: It's very simple. Well, actually it's very complicated, luckily I'm here to explain it.

Professor: Welcome everyone, what a pleasure it is to see so many miserable faces.

Zoidberg weirdness.

There you have it. Would love to discuss what i meant about how to execute a proper spoof in the comments section below, or just your thoughts on the episode and if you can relate with me.  Here is a link to download the episode from iTunes:

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