With the years weighing on Professor Farnsworth, he decides to create a successor, in the form of his ten-year-old clone, Cubert. Cubert, however, has his own plans for the future, and they don't include finishing his father's half-finished, half-baked inventions.
- Alcubierre Drive: Turns out the Planet Express ship's engines actually move the entire universe around it.
- Ass Shove: Invoked by Hermes when Zoidberg says he's a worthy successor to the Professor.Up yours, Zoidberg. Up wherever your species traditionally crams things.
- Bad News in a Good Way: "Good news, everyone! The University is bringing me up on disciplinary charges. Wait, that's not good news at all."
- Based on a Dream: According to Professor Farnsworth, all his inventions came to him in dreams (and then forgot them in different dreams). Later, Cubert figures out how the PE ship engines work from a dream he has while unconscious.
- Blatant Lies: When Cubert asks if Zoidberg even has a medical degree, he nervously responds that he lost it, in a volcano.
- Bowdlerization: On New Zealand's PickTV airing of this episode, the following scenes were edited:
- All scenes containing use of the word "bastard" (Bender yelling "You bastard!" after Professor Farnsworth's hologram confesses that Bender's soap operas had to be taped over in order to record his goodbye message and Leela shouting, "We can't, you bastard!" while trying to escape the Death Star guards).
- Bender letting it slip that Cubert is a bedwetter after Cubert says that robots are good at keeping secrets.
- Characterization Marches On: Cubert starts out as an Insufferable Genius who points out all the ridiculous aspects of the show. This, however, was not well-received and he became just a standard Bratty Half-Pint.
- Comically Missing the Point:
- As the Professor laments all the time wasted failing to build a time machine, Zoidberg observes that if it had worked, he could have gone back and told himself not to waste time building it.
- When announcing his successor, the Professor declares anyone with a weak heart should leave. He then starts to leave.
- Distinction Without a Difference:Zoidberg: Now I'm not saying Professor Farnsworth is old, but if you consider his age, he's likely to die soon.
Cubert: Look, Professor. I may be identical to you in every possible way, but that doesn't mean I'm anything like you!
- Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Cubert has this reaction when he tells Fry that instead of taking after the Professor (as Fry claimed he did) the Professor would take after him, being his nephew.Cubert: Wait a second! That means I also take after you! AAH!
- Fashionable Asymmetry: Leela's outfit at the Professor's birthday party.
- Faux Horrific: Inside the Near-Death Star, the old people are put in a virtual world where they think they're living in a facility in Florida, spending all day playing bingo, eating oatmeal and waiting for their family to call. The crew react in absolute horror.Leela: It's a hundred times more horrible than anything I could imagine!
- Generation Xerox: Invoked by the Professor with Cubert.
- Informed Attribute: Whatever it is Captain Musky's beeping stood for, it was the funniest thing at the roast. Not that the audience would know, though.
- Ladies and Germs: Parodied in Zoidberg's speech.Zoidberg: Good evening, ladies and germs. [Rim Shot] That wasn't a joke. I was talking to Dean Streptococcus.
- Lampshade Hanging/Fridge Logic: Cubert spends a fair portion pointing out all of the incongruities in the In-Universe science and natural laws.
- The Load: Cubert. The crew even disguise him as a hump on Fry's back at one point to sneak into a place.
- Logical Latecomer: The writers originally meant Cubert to be the character who points out the show's logical inconsistencies and scientific inaccuracies, as seen in the scenes where he sizes up the PE crew and mocks the Professor's inventions. This was dropped in subsequent appearances.
- Lost Common Knowledge: As mentioned in Universal Translator, French is considered a dead language in the 31st Century. "Crazy gibberish!"note
- Non-Indicative Name: The cells at the Near Death Star have names sounding like... well, ordinary streets.Guard robot: Return [Fry disguised as the Professor] to his room.
Guard robot 2: 712 Maple Drive.
Leela: Sounds nice.
Guard robot 2: Prepare to be surprised.
- Noodle Incident:
It's Showtime at The Apollo all over again.
- Apparently, Dean Vernon of Mars University once committed some manner of vehicular assault, then blamed his horse.
- When Zoidberg bombs at the roast, he laments:
Cubert: What? You've never seen a genius's wiener before?
- When Cubert's unfrozen:
Fry: Well, once in the park-
- "Everyone's in favor of saving Hitler's brain, but when you put it in the body of a great white shark... oooh, suddenly you've gone too far!"
- Overly Long Gag: "Goodbye, cruel world. Goodbye, cruel lamp!" It gets to the point that the Sunset Squad Robot just picks the Professor up and smashes his head against the window, to knock him out.
- Really Was Born Yesterday: Cubert, being a clone of the Professor.
- The Roast: What Bender turns the Professor's tribute into (it's styled after the Dean Martin celebrity roasts, not the modern-day Comedy Central ones).
- Scream Discretion Shot: Played for laughs when Bender takes an extremely generous sample of Cubert's DNA to infiltrate the Near-Death Star.
- Captain Musky is blatantly based on Captain Pike, from The Menagerie two-parter. His appearance is even punctuated with part of the series' score.
- The Professor's failed time-machine is designed after the one from The Time Machine (2002).
- The Near-Death Star. Taken further when the security droids' speeders use the sound effects of the speeder bikes. Likewise, the Professor's recorded message ends with him turning off the recorder, a la Leia in A New Hope.
- Inside the Near-Death Star, the inmates are made to live in a lifelike virtual world.
- Strange Minds Think Alike: Fry bluffs the Near-Death Star robots by saying he has "Talking Hump Syndrome". They buy it.
- Take That, Us: When Cubert starts listing meaningful jobs he wants to take (none of which sound that meaningful) the last is "science-fiction cartoon writer".
- The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: As the Professor lists all the dark secrets of the Mars University faculty, his last is Wernstrom, to whom the Professor can only growl "Wernstrom!"
- The Tape Knew You Would Say That: On Professor Farnsworth's final message to the PE staff, he accurately predicts Bender making a smart remark and reveals he has taken pre-emptive vengeance by recording said message over Bender's soaps.
- Trivially Obvious: Bender claims that, of all the former members of the Professor's crew, Captain Musky is by far the most alive.
- Universal Translator: One of the Professor's inventions, only so far it only translates into an "incomprehensible dead language" (French).
- Voodoo Shark: Parodied when Farnsworth tells Cubert that his spaceship can travel between galaxies in hours. Cubert points out that Faster-Than-Light Travel is impossible, but Farnsworth explains that that's why scientists increased the speed of light in 2208.
- Would Hurt a Child: Bender, to no-one's surprise, starts hurting Cubert in the third act, starting with zapping him after yet another rude put-down from the kid.