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Recap / Futurama S 4 E 11 Where No Fan Has Gone Before

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Where No Fan Has Gone Before

Fry learns that in the 31st century, everything related to Star Trek: The Original Seriesnote  has been forbidden. With Leonard Nimoy (who stayed on Earth because he leased an apartment and didn't want to be associated with playing Spock) in tow, he takes the crew on a quest to find the 79 episodes, and discovers the rest of the main cast- and an energy being who claims to be the number one fan of the show.


  • Actor Allusion: Melllvar is handing out copies of his fan screenplay but he notes that he didn't print enough copies so 'George and Walter will have to share'. This is something that actually happened to both actors while working on Star Trek: The Original Series.
  • Adam Westing: William Shatner portrays a slightly exaggerated version of himself, mixed with an exaggerated version of Kirk.
    Leonard Nimoy: When I directed Star Trek IV, I got a magnificent performance out of Bill because I respected him so much.
    William Shatner: And when I directed Star Trek V, I got a magnificent performance out of me, because I respected me so much!
  • Appease the Volcano God: When Star Trek is banned, Trekkies were executed "in the manner most befitting virgins".
  • An Aesop: As Fry tells Melllvar, you can't let your entire life revolve around a TV show.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Fry gives one to Melllvar.
    Fry: Wait! If [the original Star Trek cast members] mean that much to you, why do you wanna kill them?
    Melllvar: Because I... I... I don't know what I'd do without them.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • At first Fry appears to be in life support a la Captain Pike in the original series, but after his testimony is over, he steps out and lets Bender in, revealing that it's actually a communication device (which is completely unnecessary, but that's Zapp for you). Being a huge Star Trek fan, Fry of course plays it up for all its worth.
    • Zapp asks for information on why Star Trek was banned, provided by "someone with a sexily seductive voice". Nichelle Nichols opens her mouth to speak...
      George Takei: With pleasure.
  • Basement-Dweller: Melllvar is revealed to be one when his mother calls him for dinner.
    Fry: All this time we thought he was a powerful super-being, yet he was just a child.
    Melllvar's Mother: He's not a child, he's 34!
  • Blatant Lies: Bender's first claim when he's put on trial is to claim he never met Fry before.
  • Boldly Coming: To no-one's surprise, William Shatner manages to seduce Leela.
  • Butt-Monkey: Welshy, who Melllvar kills in retaliation for Bender's badmouthing. The energy being then goes on to electrocute the corpse each time he gets angry, until Welshy's body disintegrates into dust.
  • The Cameo: Jonathan Frakes, replacing Nimoy in the head museum.
    "Yes! Front row!"
  • Cameo Cluster: Features what was, at air, most of the Star Trek: TOS surviving cast — William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols and Walter Koenig.
  • Comically Missing the Point: When Fry cites what the cast of Trek did after the show, we get this.
    Fry: Look at Walter Koenig. After Star Trek, he became an actor.
    Koenig: (cheerfully) Not just an actor, but a well-rounded person!
  • Continuity Nod: Zapp brings up that time he and Leela slept together, again.
  • Court-martialed: Zapp Brannigan court-martials the Planet Express crew for entering the Forbidden Zone, in a direct parody of "The Menagerie".
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • Leonard Nimoy gets a few dry remarks in, such as when the two crews find Leela and Shatner making out.
      Fry: We decided to work together.
      Nimoy: So did they.
    • Having been forced to return to life as a head in a jar, Nimoy is rather unimpressed with Fry's optimism at the end of the episode.
      Fry: Look, Leonard! We're light enough to keep the tapes! Isn't that great?
      Nimoy: I'm living in a gefilte fish jar.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: "You can't go to the Forbidden Zone! It's forbidden! I forbid you!"
  • Did You Die?: Zapp assumes none of the people on trial survived the battle to the death. Leela gets annoyed at this.
  • Dull Surprise: In-universe. None of the Trek cast are impressed by Melllvar's clichéd and poorly-written script, and don't even bother trying to act.
  • Emergency Cargo Dump: Due to how damaged the Planet Express ship is, the Trek cast is forced to go back to being heads in jars to make it light enough.
  • Expy Coexistence: Zapp Brannigan, a parody of William Shatner, appears in this episode alongside the original.
  • Funetik Aksent: Much to Walter Koenig's annoyance, he briefly agrees to speak in his Fake Russian accent at Fry's request.
    Koenig: When we woke up, we had these bodies.
    Fry: Say it in Russian.
    Koenig: [groans] Ven ve voke up, ve had these wodies.
    Fry: Eeeee! Now say "nuclear wessels".
    Koenig: NO!
  • The Ghost: James Doohan doesn't appear (he declined to participate in the episode), although he is mentioned twice.
  • Great Offscreen War: The Star Trek Wars (not to be confused with the Star Wars Trek).
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: During the brawl between the crews, Bender grabs Nimoy by the legs and spins him around to hit Kelley, Koenig, and Takei.
  • Hanging Judge: Zapp, to no-one's surprise. After asking Fry whether he pleads guilty, he takes Fry's response of "not guilty" (two bleeps for no) as "double guilty" and prepares to kill him.
  • He's Dead, Jim: Parodied. The soldiers throwing the Trekkies into a volcano says this after each Trekkie is executed.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Invoked when Nimoy is reunited with Shatner.
    Nimoy: I feel like hugging you!
    Shatner: Well, I would except you have no body.
    Nimoy: Ha, ha, ha.
    Shatner: And we're both men.
  • Hope Spot: During the flashback, the cast and Trek actors manage to flee Melllvar's planet. He gives chase, only for them to run into the Nimbus. Just as Leela thinks they're safe, Zapp arrests them. You'd think Leela would've known better than to rely on Zapp.
  • How We Got Here: The episode opens with the court-martial and the testimony flashes back to the main events of the story. The trope is parodied with the reveal that the trial took place in the middle of being chased by Melllvar, who is still in pursuit.
  • If I Can't Have You…: Melllvar tries time kill the Star Trek crew rather than let them go.
  • Illegal Religion: Star Trek became a religion in the ensuing centuries, until it got out of hand and was banned.
  • Interrogation Flashback: Most of the episode consist of these, as Fry, Bender and Leela are interrogated by Zapp.
  • Involuntary Battle to the Death: Spoofed when Melllvar pits the Planet Express crew against the Star Trek cast in a battle to see which is more worthy of his devotion. This episode is the current source for the trope's quote.
  • Lava Pot Volcano: The members of the Star Trek cult were executed "in the manner best befitting virgins", by being thrown into a volcano filled with hot lava.
  • Let's Mock the Monsters: Upon seeing Melllvar, Bender calls him a "cheesy effect". Welshie pays the price.
  • Macgyvering: Parodied when Fry tries to make a bow string from caterpillars. It doesn't work.
  • Metaphorgotten: William Shatner, trying to talk Leela down.
    Shatner: Leela, please. This is just what Melllvar wants. We're just pawns in his diabolical game of checkers.
  • My Nayme Is: Melllvar is spelled with three Ls.
    George Takei: I think I've done enough conventions to know how to spell "Melllvar".
  • Nerds Are Virgins: The Star Trek Wars ended with Star Trek fans being executed "in the manner best befitting virgins" a.k.a. tossing them into a volcano.
  • No-Sell: Unsurprisingly, Nimoy's attempt to use the Vulcan Nerve Pinch on Bender doesn't work at all. Takei's attempted karate chop fails for the same reason.
  • Old Shame: Bender's question to Melllvar provokes a gem of a line from Walter Koenig.
    Bender: Can people who hate Star Trek leave?
    Koenig: Good question.
    Melllvar: No, you have to stay even longer.
    [Bender and Koenig groan]
  • On Second Thought: The Star Trek cast note how, psychosis aside, Melllvar wasn't that bad of a host, giving them immortal bodies and a paradise to live in (not to mention a full bar). When Fry adds that all they'd have to do in return was put up with one really annoying Trekkie, the cast decide to leave as quickly as possible.
    Leonard Nimoy: Truly, it was a paradise.
    Fry: And all you had to put up with was one really annoying Star Trek fan.
  • Once for Yes, Twice for No: When Zapp interrogates Fry, who appears to be in a Captain Pike-like life support device and can only beep. When Zapp asks Fry if he pleads guilty, Fry beeps twice, which Zapp interprets as a "double yes".
  • Phlebotinum Overload: Leela's plan to destroy Melllvar by blasting it with energy from the power thrusters, overloading him "like putting too much air in a balloon". It backfires, as Melllvar just absorbs the energy and becomes more powerful. ("Like a balloon and... something bad happens!")
  • Red Shirt: Welshy, who replaced Scotty's actor for live tours, is unceremoniously killed off just to show how nuts Melllvar is.
  • Say My Name:
    • Courtesy of Fry: "WELSHY!"
    • And of course, during the trivia contest:
      Leela: Who did the Captain maroon on Ceti Alpha V?
      William Shatner: KHAAAAAAAAAN!!!
  • Self-Deprecation: Star Trek fandom gets absolutely raked over the coals this episode, but the script could not have been written without intimate knowledge of every episode of the show.
  • Self-Destruct Mechanism: George Takei asked if the Planet Express ship had a self destruct code like 'Destruct sequence 1-A, 2-B, 3—'. He ends up making Bender's head explode.
    Bender: Thanks a lot, Takei. Now everybody knows!
  • Self-Insert Fic: Melllvar has the cast act out a script he wrote in which he supposedly saves the crew of the Enterprise.
  • Series Continuity Error: This episode explicitly states that Star Trek and all mentions of it had been banned for centuries, despite countless episodes openly referencing it. It gets lampshaded in the commentary:
  • Shout-Out: Many to Star Trekl it would take forever to list them all, so here's a decent list.
    • In the flashback explaining what happened to the Trek religion, the ship shooting the tapes into space is an Eagle from Space: 1999.
    • When Melllvar's mother appears and tells him to stop playing with his toys, Fry says that for all his power, Melllvar is just a child. Kirk said much the same thing about the villain Trelane in the Original Series episode "The Squire of Gothos".
    • Melllvar electrocutes Welshie as punishment for Bender doubting his power, which is a reference to "God" doing the same thing to Kirk and Spock (albeit not fatally in their case) in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. Which, amusingly, means that Futurama acknowledged that film's existence before the Star Trek franchise itself did, as it was consigned to effective Canon Discontinuity status by future episodes and films, and didn't get referenced until Star Trek Beyond, a whole thirteen years after this episode aired.
  • Sore Loser: Fry completely trounces Melllvar at a Star Trek trivia competition, leading the energy being to angrily say his buzzer is broken and move on to the next event.
  • Sound-Effect Bleep: Parodied when Leela takes the stand and uses the Captain Pike machine to tell Zapp to "Go *bleep* yourself."
  • Special Guest: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, and Walter Koenig.
  • Stereotype Reaction Gag: George Takei says, "I find that offensive," when William Shatner asks him to do a karate chop, stating he feels Shatner is assuming he knows karate simply by being Japanese. This is possibly a reference to how the "shirtless Sulu with a sword" scene in "The Naked Now" originally had Sulu with a katana, but was changed to a rapier at Takei's request for the same reason.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Played for Laughs with Welshie, filling in for James Doohan, whose health was declining by this time.
  • Take That!:
  • Taking You with Me: Takei suggested they take Melllvar with them by triggering the Planet Express ship's self destruct.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: "I am literally angry with rage!"
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: In the several hundred years they were stuck on Omega-3, the Star Trek cast never gave any thought to the fact they were in ageless, needless bodies, since as celebrities they were used to getting stuff for free.
  • The Voiceless: DeForest Kelley is depicted this way, since Kelley died in 1999.
  • Where No Parody Has Gone Before: The Trope Namer and Trope Codifier.
  • Who Writes This Crap?!: Shatner's reaction to reading Melllvar's fan script.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: Discussed when Leela and Shatner are forced to fight each other.
    William Shatner: You know, there is no right way to hit a woman.
    Leela: Then do it the wrong way.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: The Trek actors are all forced to give up their new, youthful bodies in order to escape Melllvar.
  • Your Head Asplode: Bender's head gets blown up when Takei accidentally triggers his self destruct.