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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Is Linda really blissfully unaware of what Morbo says when he goes on to threaten the human race? She's been working with the guy for years, and since his people still haven't done anything to Earth she could well view his tirades as big talk. Although a later episode revealed she's a hardcore alcoholic which may have something to do with her reactions.
    • Hubert Farnsworth can be interpreted as a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing who is really Obfuscating Stupidity. Most of his actions cause problems, and it is hinted that he has multiple doomsday devices. The slogan of Planet Express suggests that all crews are expendable, and the company's current employees are not his first crew. Furthermore, the Professor once had a relationship with Mom, and even created albino atomic apes for the sole purpose of proclaiming his love for her. Last, but not least, he presents himself as fairly nice in the pilot, but later on is quite mean to Fry and Leela. Considering all these facts, Hubert's supposed senility does seem to be a very good act to get away with endangering people.
      Universe A!Farnsworth: I'm going home. Where's that blue box with our universe in it?
      Universe B!Farnsworth: Oh, you'd like to get back to your evil universe, wouldn't you, and destroy your box with our universe inside it?
      A!Farnsworth: Nonsense. I would never do such a thing unless you were already having been going to do that.
      B!Farnsworth: Wha...?
      A!Farnsworth: You heard me!
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    • Is Nibbler a bit too committed to his dumb animal act, or is he shrewdly exploiting it to get away with being a Jerkass to everyone? It helps the person his misbehaviour most irritates tends to be Bender, who hates him.
    • Lars Fillmore could be seen as a version of Fry who straightened out his life, learned some valuable lessons about relationships and maturity, and knew what Leela was really looking for in a man better than Fry himself or an opportunist who almost stole his less mature self's chance at happiness just because he saw a potential advantage without any regard for how Fry felt (which is something he'd be well aware of in doing so, because of who he is).
    • Is Bender a Jerk with a Heart of Gold or is he rotten to the core processor? The show has plenty of evidence for both. It gets more complicated once you account for the question of how much input he really has into his own personality and actions. A popular fan theory has it that he became the character we see throughout the show on the day of the pilot episode, with the lightbulb shock he recieved in the Hall of Criminals rebooting his system and turning him from passive and suicidal to, well, a criminal (though it's implied that criminality is actually part of the default bender unit programming and he cheats the suicide booth before the lightbulb encounter).
  • Angst? What Angst?:
    • Fry brushes of all attempts to make him cry "My Three Suns" in spite of the fact that he needs to to save his life because he's "too macho" until they tell him Leela's hurt. When that doesn't work they beat him).
    • Fry and Leela don't seem too bothered by the idea that everything in the universe is frozen in place besides them in the series finale. Well, they did have each other.
    • Played for Laughs in "Space Pilot 3000", where Fry actually expresses joy for leaving his old time period, though a later episode suggests that he just convinced himself that his past was horrible because he knew he could never go back.
  • Anvilicious:
    • "Into the Wild Green Yonder", with heavily pro-feminist and pro-environment messages, can come across as this. Alternatively zig-zagged or double-subverted, as the eco-feminists come off half the time as well-intentioned heroes, and the other half as disorganized, overzealous morons.
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    • "Hell is Other Robots" has anti-religious overtones (specifically how Bender takes up a religion and becomes a genuinely better person. It's especially heavy-handed that his friends don't like his newfound faith and character and persuade him to leave his religion and cheat to save him from the punishment his religion doles out).
    • "Decision 3012" is basically 20-odd minutes of "Birthers are bigoted morons". Made especially painful by the fact that the whole controversy had died down immensely by the time the episode aired and that rather politics are in or out of the equation, the Barack Obama stand-in in the episode is an insufferable, humor-lacking The Ace to the point of being one-dimensional and shoehorned as The Woobie at the same time and hinted as a love interest for Leela without provoking Fry's jealousy.
    • A lot of post-revival episodes can be seen as this, making their episode topics about various current events such as the latest iPhone, media censorship, or GMO products, often wish very little else aside from trying to teach heavyhanded lessons on various topics that can come across as forced.
  • Ass Pull: The reveal that Igner is Professor Farnsworth's son. First, "Mother's Day" revealed that Farnsworth's affair with Mom took place long before he could have been born. Second, unless Mom managed to cover it up, Igner didn't show up as one of Fry's living relatives in the pilot. It doesn't help that after the reveal, it pretty much never came up again in the series.
  • Awesome Music:
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Zapp Brannigan. Depending on who you ask, he's either hilarious or the worst character on the show.
    • Zoidberg. Despite his large fanbase, many people hate him just as much as the other characters do.
    • Kif in later seasons. Some fans don't mind his relationship with Amy, while others didn't like how his personality changed from a Deadpan Snarker to an Extreme Doormat.
  • Better on DVD: The original run was broadcast out of order and at erratic intervals (to the point that there are actually five broadcast seasons made up of four production seasons). The DVDs thankfully allow you to watch the series as it was originally intended.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Seen all over the place. Most notably in the episode The Sting where 60% of the episode are these. Also subverted a number of times.
  • Bizarro Episode:
  • Broken Base: The made-for-DVD movies and the Comedy Central episodes. Either they're just as good as the FOX episodes or they're an inferior copy of the infinitely better FOX run. Ditto the first couple of episodes, where the voice acting was kinda off (especially for Bender), everyone's characterizations weren't fully developed, and most people thought the show was So Okay, It's Average (or dismissed it as "The Simpsons in space").
  • Captain Obvious Aesop: Parodied:
    Jack Johnson: It's time that someone had the courage to stand up and say: "I'm against those things that everybody hates!"
    John Jackson: I respect my opponent. He's a good man. But frankly, I agree with everything he just said!
  • Cargo Ship: Scruffy owns a robotic Washbucket with a female voice. In one episode, Amy gets her brain switched with the Washbucket, and Washbucket declares her love for Scruffy. Scruffy declares his love back, but turns her down because she's a robot even in Amy's body. She leaves the room, and he curls up and cries.
  • Crosses the Line Twice:
    • Fry's repeated deaths in "Meanwhile". At first it's gruesome and horrifying, but after the fourth or fifth time, it becomes gruesome and hilarious.
    • Robot Santa's entire existence is based solely on this trope.
    • Any time that Fry casually mentions domestic abuse is far funnier than it has any right to be.
    • The "Lovey Bears" from "Love and Rocket". A set of adorable stuff-animal toys, made by genetically engineering super-adorable little bears, raising them in a cutesy, loving environment, and then on their first birthday, finding the cutest, murdering them and stuffing them full of fire-retardant fluff. Even Bender actually looks unnerved by that one.
    • Bender tapdancing on the recently dead body of a young girl with a heart condition, after stating that he couldn't wait to dance on her grave. What saves is that, a) she was a manipulative Bitch in Sheep's Clothing who tried to sabotage his performance earlier, and b), the tap dancing ends up resuscitating her.
    • Bender telling the Scammers, he can figure out how to stealthy steal the doomsday device handcuffed to the Professor's hand, himself, only cut to him holding a bloody saw with the device still cuffed to his severed hand. Somehow topped afterwards, when a flashback reveals the saw was dull and it took several minutes to work and the Professor was still asleep the whole time.
    • Yet another one for Bender, when he goes to the Robot Devil for some help. All Bender needs to do is to bring his first born son. The scene is set up for a seemingly heart warming reunion between estranged father and son... and then Bender promptly punts his child into a vat of magma. It is both cruel and hilarious. Even the Robot Devil lampshades how messed up it was.
      Robot Devil: Wow, that was pretty brutal even by my standards.
  • Designated Villain: There's the parody example of the Ball aliens that Earth went to war with on "War Is The H-Word". As it turns out, it was the Earthican forces that were the invaders, the Ball people were just harmless aliens that only wanted to bounce. When Fry realizes this, he's understandably confused.
  • Do Not Do This Cool Thing: From "Bender Should Not Be Allowed on Television":
    Bender: You're watching Futurama, the show that does not advocate the really cool crime of robbery!
  • Ear Worm:
    • "Weeeee're whalers on the Moon..." Repeated many times within the episode, and the characters are clearly sick of it.
    • "Call Robo-Rooter when you flush a towel! And we can also help with an impacted bowel. Robo-Rooter!"
    • "Pop a Poppler in your mouth/When you come to Fishy Joe's!/What they're made of is a mystery/Where they come from no one knows!/You can pick 'em, you can lick 'em/You can chew 'em, you can stick 'em/If you promise not to sue us/You can shove one up your nose!"
    • Also the Robot Hell song.
    • And Hermes' bureaucrat song.
    • "Freedom, freedom, freedom, oy! Freedom, freedom, freedom, oy!"
    • This toy shop's goin' to war!
    • The four-beat melody from "Game of Tones".
    • "He wants a brain!" "He wants a Robit Brain!"
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • "All glory to the hypno-toad!"
    • Calculon and his UNGODLY! ACTING! TALENT!!!
    • Scruffy was a popular character during the interim when Futurama was not producing new episodes. He only made a few appearances in the original run, and was mostly noteworthy for his extreme apathy. Since the revival, Scruffy has had a much larger role, frequently appearing alongside the main cast, almost solely due to his popularity on the Internet.
    • "That Guy" from "Future Stock" is fairly popular and frequently quoted despite only being in one episode (one that he dies at the end of, no less) and not even having a name in the episode proper (according to Word of God, his name is Steve Castle).
    • Fatbot was fairly well-liked in his debut episode, to the point where he made numerous appearances in later episodes.
    • Fry's dog Seymour, who managed to deliver one of the saddest endings of all time in his debut episode. To date, he's only appeared in five episodes, including "Bender's Big Score".
  • Fanfic Fuel: One issue of the comic books indicates that foiling and then assisting the Zookeeper was not the only adventure that Fry, Leela, and Bender had as the New Justice Team. Who knows what other adventures they had with their superpowers?
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • In "I Dated A Robot" we see a video about how humans dating robots will destroy the world. Then we get "Proposition Infinity" and discover robosexuals are both common and repressed. Bonus awkward for the original tape being a high school health class video approved by The Space Pope.
    • In "Space Pilot 3000", the line about the Stop & Drop Suicide booths being "Americans' favorite suicide booth since 2008" becomes a bit wince-worthy in light of 2008's economic meltdown and the invention of an actual suicide machine in the same year.
    • Fry's delighted reaction to realizing that everybody and everything he knew in the 20th century has gone (since he thought they didn't seem to like, care, or even respect him) seems much harsher when subsequent episodes such as "Luck of the Fryish", "Cold Warriors" and "Game of Tones" have shown that his family actually did love him and were worried about him when he went missing.
    • One of the stations in the New New York tubeway system is given as "J.F.K., Jr. Airport". After the real-life John F. Kennedy, Jr. died when his private plane crashed, the line was replaced with "Radio City Mutant Hall" (though the original line can still be heard on the full-episode animatic that appears on Futurama volume one DVD).
    • In "The Lesser of Two Evils", the main characters visit a theme park modeled on 2000s New York. There's a brief scene where the stock market drops from about 11,000 to 7,200, similar numbers to the real-life 2008 crash. (Fortunately, it jumps right back up to 11,000, and all the stock brokers who jumped to their apparent deaths float back up into the building via jetpack). Considering that the scene was supposed to be a "distorted history" take on the crash that started the Great Depression, that makes this a sort of bizarre case of life imitating art imitating life.
    • "The Problem With Popplers" features an Animal Wrongs Group protesting meat consumption, with Leela pointing out that animals eat other animals and then shown a lion who was taught to eat tofu... with the lion in a very, very malnourished state. The 2010's brings us the disturbing trend of vegan pet owners forcing their pets onto vegan diets.
    • Remember in "That's Lobstertainment!" when Joan Rivers' head joked she had her face lifted so many times they finally cut it off her body? It becomes a lot less funny after the real Joan Rivers died during plastic surgery.
    • In "Attack of the Killer App", Sal's friend Hoschel remarks that the video of Fry diving into alien goat vomit and diarrhea is "disgusting and inspiring, like Jared from Subway". As of 2015, Jared Fogle has been fired by Subway after he confessed to owning child pornography and having sex with minors.
    • In "Bend Her," Bender masquerades as female as a means of dominating the fembots at the Olympics and scoring easy medals. In real life, scenarios like the one presented in the episode are often used to justify barring transgender women from participating in sports and disqualifying their achievements, under the pretense that they are men taking advantage of Political Correctness Gone Mad to score easy wins. The gender testing that Bender is then forced to go through is also harsher in light of real testosterone testing for athletes, which targets not only trans women but also cisgender women with hyperandrogenism.note 
    • Either this trope or Hilarious in Hindsight: In "The Cyber House Rules," Bender attempts to sell off the orphans he adopted as meat for a Chinese restaurant, with the last two crimes when he gets arrested listed as "selling children as food, and misrepresenting the weight of livestock." 15 years later, we got an entire manga and anime centered around that.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • A lot of jokes, references, and continuity errors are more understandable if you know anything about college-level math and science.
    • The series has a number of particularly extreme examples in which complicated jokes (possibly made in a fictional language) are hidden in the background and can only be seen for a split-second, requiring a very devoted fan to pause and get the absolute most out of episodes.
    • Everything's playing at the Aleph-Null-Plex!
    • In real life, Professor Philo Farnsworth was the inventor of cathode-ray video transmission, which brought us television, which brought us Futurama.
    • Leela was named after Olivier Messiaen's Turangalîla-Symphonie, which is notable for a few reasons, the most-relevant being its featuring of an electronic instrument, the ondes Martenot (Martenot waves), which has provided distinctive sound effects and music in many sci-fi works.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • The electronics disposal scene in "Attack of the Killer App" can be somewhat disquieting for actual New Yorkers. In 2015, It became illegal to submit most electronics for curbside garbage disposal in New York State.
    • In "Into the Wild Green Yonder", white rhinoceroses are shown amongst the animals preserved by the Last Encyclopod alongside extinct species. In 2018, the northern white rhinoceros was declared functionally extinct after the death of the last male.
    • Mom (who is somewhat of a Take That! to Disney's monopolistic behavior in spite of its pleasant imagery) almost buying up Planet Express in "Future Stock," given that through its purchase of Fox, Disney now owns the rights to Futurama.
  • He Really Can Act:
    • It goes without saying that Billy West has a great range, but he also deserves credit for his genuinely heartfelt performances in episodes like "Jurassic Bark" and "Luck of the Fryrish".
    • Bender is first and foremost a comedic character. This doesn't stop John Dimaggio from nailing his performance during the climax of "The Bots and the Bees".
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: In the second episode, one reason Fry lists for why he couldn't become an astronaut is that nobody liked spending a week with him. Leela agrees, "A week would be a little much." Contrast this with the finale, where not only do the two get married and explore the world while everything in the universe is frozen in time, eventually growing old together, Leela is the one to say she was never lonely during all those decades alone with Fry. It really shows how their relationship has strengthened throughout the show.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • The unnamed couple's clear, plastic tarps with strategically-placed black tape from "Space Pilot 3000", the futuristic club clothes everyone wears at The Hip Joint on "Love's Labors Lost in Space" and Leela's costume on "Bend Her" can now be identified as styles associated with Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, or Kesha.
    • The Couch Gag from the final original series episode? "See you on some other channel." Doubly hilarious, considering that Futurama went from being rerun on Cartoon Network's [adult swim] block to rerun (and revived) on Comedy Central, and triply hilarious now that Comedy Central canceled it and there's a lot of rumors that the show will once again be revived somewhere else.
      • Speaking of cancellation, you could say that during the time between the Fox cancellation and the direct-to-DVD movies, the show, like Fry himself, was frozen in suspended animation.
    • In "Bend Her", when Bender asks Farnsworth to make a woman out of him, Farnsworth misunderstands and says they should "just remain friends". We later find out that he actually has had experience with Robosexual relationships in "Proposition Infinity".
      • The idea of Bender getting a sex change operation after winning some Olympic gold medals and marrying a rich TV personality is very similar to the story of Caitlyn Jenner. The fact that Bender only cares about himself during all this mirrors the controversies that Jenner is not a good transgender role model.
    • In "Overclockwise" Mom spies on Bender and Cubert using the X-Cube 360's camera. Two years later, Kinect 2 on the Xbox One was announced to be mandatory and still listening even when left on standby, making people paranoid that Microsoft was trying to spy on them (though it would later turn out that the Kinnect would not listen during standby).
    • In "The Cryonic Woman", a man who was unfrozen claims he did so because he wanted to meet Shakespeare, his reasoning being "I figured time was cyclical". Although Fry's response is "Nope, straight line", "The Late Phillip J. Fry" shows that ultimately, due to the universe repeating eternally, time is cyclical after all.
    • In "A Farewell to Arms" Amy mentions the end of the world prophecy tells of Sharksplosions.
    • The second segment of "Anthology of Interest II" features the Earth being invaded by classic 1980's arcade game characters. Years later this winds up being the basis for Pixels.
    • In the fourth film, "Into the Wild Green Yonder", Straw Feminist Frida Waterfall has a quirk of feminizing and masculineizing words ("I will fem-unicate your man-formation"). Cut to present day and the rise in popularity of terms such as 'mansplain' and 'manspread'.
    • One of the animals on the list in "Love's Labors Lost in Space" is a Sharktopus.
    • In 2001, the episode "I Dated A Robot" aired and showed an Alternate Universe in which everyone is a cowboy. In 2004, Steel Ball Run came out and is basically the same thing.
    • At the end of "Three Hundred Big Boys", Dwight invests Hermes' last penny from his tax refund in five shares of Amazon. As of the time of this edit, fourteen years after that episode's airing, one share of Amazon is valued at $852.60, more than twice the entire refund.
    • In "A Fishful of Dollars", Pamela Anderson's Head mentions Baywatch: The Movie, which would eventually be released in 2017. Bonus points for Walt saying that movie "hasn't been made yet", almost as if the writer of that episode somehow knew it would be made at some point or another. Sadly, it was not filmed entirely in slow motion like Pamela Anderson's head claimed in the episode.
    • Also in "A Fishful of Dollars", the episode ends with Zoidberg repeatedly yelling for "MORE!"
    • "Decision 3012" has a victorious President Nixon build a wall around the Solar System to keep space aliens out. Come 2016, and Donald Trump becomes President promising to build a wall on the Mexican border to keep illegal aliens out.
    • Near the end of "The Lesser Of Two Evils," Leela is mistakenly crowned as Miss Universe before Zapp clarifies he hadn't opened the envelope, then Leela's crown is given to the real winner after he reveals who it is. It's reminiscient of the Miss Universe 2015 controversy, when Steve Harvey accidentally announced the wrong girl as winner before correcting himself.
    • "The Honking" has Calculon reference being first attacked by the Were-car in 2019. In January of that very year, an autonomous robot called Promobot was run over by a self-driving Tesla Motors car in what was dubbed "the first robot hit-and-run accident."
    • In "Lrrreconcilable Ndndifferences", Matt Groening's head announced a new series called "Futurella" which he premieres at a comic convention only for it to be instantly cancelled by Fox before it even makes it past the title screen and him commenting how fast it was. Years down the line and the advent of streaming services, cancelling shows almost near instantly is pretty common for online series within their premieres (as most seasons are uploaded in full then episode by episode) if they're not very popular or behind the scenes deal not working out. The most prominent example being 2019 version of Swamp Thing which was axed by DC Universe only after showing one episode.
    • "I Second That Emotion":
  • Informed Wrongness: Bender in "I Second That Emotion". His reason for lashing out at Nibbler was because an unattended can-opener nearly killed him, and as he implied, killed his father in the past. While Bender's behavior later was uncalled for, that can-opener was pretty much a deathtrap for robots.
  • It Was His Sled: Leela's origins and parentage were a big twist when "Leela's Homeworld" first aired, but it's unlikely any viewers make it to that episode without knowing ahead of time these days.
  • Memetic Mutation: A page full of them!
  • Moral Event Horizon: Zapp Brannigan is a grade-A Jerkass, putting himself above others and commanding suicide missions. However, some may argue that he crossed the line in "The Beast with a Billion Backs". Kif dies as a result of Zapp making him try to go through the dimensional portal to attack Yivo. After hiding in a shack with Amy and Leela, Zapp begins "reminiscing" about Kif. Zapp then SLEEPS WITH AMY. So, yeah, the jerk used a widow's husband's death, one that he caused no less... to get laid.
    • If he didn't cross it then, Zapp definitely crossed it in "In-A-Gadda-Da-Leela". Leela and Zapp crash on an unknown planet, alone and without supplies. Leela is trapped under a fallen tree, and delirious from lack of water, and the Earth has apparently been destroyed. Through the episode, Zapp appears to be helping Leela get better. Then we find out that the planet they crashed on is Earth, and Zapp has not only been using their current predicament for an Adam and Eve Plot-style seduction, but placed the hazards there so that he'd have a better shot at sleeping with Leela (again). The writers themselves seem to know that what Zapp did was unforgivable: they originally planned for Zapp to get off scot-free, but changed it to Leela punishing him in a rather fitting manner.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • John DiMaggio has stated he thinks this of the sound effect used when Mom slaps all three of her sons at once.
    • The sound of the Hypnotoad doing its thing.
  • Narm: An in-story example:
    Fry: "Bone-itis"? That's a funny name for a horrible disease.
  • Nausea Fuel:
    • Fry drinking a tub of beer that others have spat out in "Fun on a Bun".
    • Fry drinking bathtub eggnog that Zoidberg turned out to be in in "A Tale of Two Santas". Zoidberg's response makes it more gross depending on whether you think Zoidberg's being a Fish out of Water and thinks the eggnog is a bath or he's in the right and the "eggnog" isn't even eggnog at all but scented bathwater.
    • Bender drinking the alcohol-flavored water Professor Farnsworth was bathing in and commenting on the flavor being a fine cognac with a hint of aged scrotum in "Benderama".
    • Bender as a morbidly obese human in "Anthology of Interest II".
    • The tub full of alien goat vomit and diarrhea that Fry and Bender make a bet over who has to dive in it in "Attack of the Killer App".
    • "Murder on the Planet Express" manages to best them all, with Leela eating Fry's kidney. Made even worse when you consider that at this point, they're dating.
  • Never Live It Down: In-Universe with Leela's one night stand with Zapp in "Love's Labors Lost in Space". Mostly because he references it every single time they share a scene, though the later episodes don't mention it at all.
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: Game of Drones, a puzzle game based on the show, has excellent animation and catchy music. It's also at a good difficulty level - it's not so hard that it's frustrating, but it's not so easy that it's boring.
  • Older Than They Think: The "Do you remember [X]? Pepperidge Farm remembers." joke had been done in "A Fishful of Dollars", seven years before Family Guy did it in "Hell Comes to Quahog".
  • Portmanteau Couple Name:
    • Freela = Fry/Leela
    • Fender = Fry/Bender
    • Leeler = Leela/Bender
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: Opinions on Futurama: The Game vary. While it's not a terrible game, is an uninspired Third-Person Shooter, merely So Okay, It's Average by most fans' standards. While the graphics do look rather nice and the character designs translate well into 3D, its main saving grace is its hilarious story, which was penned by the actual writers and performed by the voice actors of the show. Not only does it manage to lampshade a few aspects of the show, but it makes fun of a few video game clichés as well. Luckily, all of the cutscenes (and some filmed gameplay) were strung together and released as an unofficial episode, which is available as a special feature on the second film release, The Beast With a Billion Backs.
  • The Scrappy:
    • The "Susan" butt boil is quickly getting a lot of this for various reasons, such as it being an already outdated joke in an already topical-heavy episode, for having a really annoying voice, and for adding an unnecessary squick factor to Leela.
    • Leela's parents, Morris and Munda, are also rather disliked by fans. A lot of it comes from the fact that they separated for silly reasons just to get an episode's plot going, and they tend to be shoehorned into every episode they appear.
    • Ndnd, the wife of Lrrr is hated as well as she basically does nothing but nag her husband around and downright abuses him verbally while in one episode, she hits him over the head with a frying pan and kicks him out of their house all because he got her a gift she didn't really like.
    • Yivo, despite being the main antagonist of The Beast with a Billion Backs is not really villainous or evil but he is hated for forcing almost everyone in the universe into a relationship with him, meaning that he forcibly put his tentacles into peoples necks and was revealed to be "mating" with those people through those tentacles meaning that Yivo was technically raping these people and he got away with all that and was Easily Forgiven for it despite how serious his crimes were. He was also an invincible villain due to be entirely composed of electromatter and was also a Karma Houdini.
  • Seasonal Rot:
    • The Comedy Central episodes and made-for-DVD movies are viewed by some as inferior to the earlier FOX episodes.
    • Futurama post-revival (Seasons 6 and 7) are also viewed as some of the weaker seasons, where plots started to be more anvilicious (see above), make reference to recent events that had fallen by the wayside by the time the episode aired, more outlandish (as in, Theory of Narrative Causality so much it's a borderline Ass Pull), and also doing a Two Lines, No Waiting plot (for Matt Groening shows, this usually means we end up with two mediocre plots instead of one decent one).
  • Spiritual Adaptation: Its down-to-earth and humorous portrayal of complex scientific concepts, and its depiction of such things as "the big bang" and "the heat death of the universe" makes it one for Italo Calvino's Cosmicomics, this is especially true of the episode "Naturama".
  • Strawman Has a Point: A spritz from Zoidberg's empathy bladder actually *does* sound relaxing, if a bit gross.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The main theme, to both Pierre Henry's original "Psyché Rock" and the Fatboy Slim remix thereof; the influence of the latter is especially obvious in the extended version.
  • Sweet Dreams Fuel: Surprisingly enough, despite its occasionally horrifying moments, there's an entire subreddit dedicated to falling asleep to the show.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • After it was revealed that Igner was Farnsworth's son, that gave the show potential for story ideas after it was Un-Canceled. However, after the reveal, Igner stayed a side character and it was never brought up again.
    • To some, Nibbler, as they didn't really do anything with him once the crew found out he could talk. In fact, he only appeared in about 4-5 episodes of the Comedy Central run, in which he spoke in only about 3 episodes.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: "Proposition Infinity" was an allegory for legalizing/delegalizing gay marriage at the time. The episode could have provided insightful commentary on the issue, but instead ended up reducing an important social issue to Black and White Morality. In particular, Farnsworth was given a very generic Freudian Excuse for opposing robosexual marriage, when his opposition could have instead been out of genuine concern for society and/or the Planet Express crew, thus making his change of heart far more valuable than it was.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Leonardo Da Vinci in "The-Duh-Vinci-Code". The fact that he built a device solely to kill the rest of the population of his planet is supposed to be seen as some sort of great Moral Event Horizon and is even lampshaded by Fry's horrified reaction. However, he comes off as much more tragic due to the fact that the rest of his race were complete and utter jerkasses who bullied him, mocked him, belittled him, and harassed him all his life just because he wasn't as smart as the rest of his population. Given how several people in real life can be severely traumatized from excessive bullying from just a few days and how he had to put up with being bullied for several millennia due to their advanced lifespans, he comes of more of a would-be Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds than anything else. And his race showing pity for Da Vinci after his death comes off as more hypocritical of them than anything else.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Fry in "Game of Tones". His desire to spend time with a dream simulation of his deceased mother is totally understandable... except that by doing so, he's willfully ignoring his mission and jeopardizing every actual living person on Earth.
  • Unpopular Popular Character: Zoidberg is the In-Universe Scrappy to the other characters, but he's very popular amongst fans.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • As funny (and somewhat heartwarming) as it is, the episode "Bend Her" (first aired in 2003) can come off as offensive to transgender people and women these days, as it shows Bender dominating in the Olympics over the fembots and getting a sex change to trick the judges (and Calculon). There's also Farnsworth's sexist remarks about women being swayed by their emotions (though Leela does slap him for saying that) and Bender (as "Coilette") acting slutty as a means to be attractive to Calculon.
    • Fry's Dogged Nice Guy pursuit of Leela can come off as quite a bit creepier than was intended at the time. The similar dynamic between Elfo and Bean in Groening's later series Disenchantment can even come off as something of an Author's Saving Throw for this, as this time the show is presented from the woman's point of view with the man often coming off as a jerk.
  • We're Still Relevant, Dammit!: The Comedy Central series is a lot more prone to referencing topical events that end up being yesterday's news not long after the episode airs. "Attack of the Killer App" alone has iPhones, Twitter, Susan Boyle, and references to Jared from the Subway adverts at the same time. This episode aired in mid-2010, well after many of these topics stopped being topical (or at least edgy). The only good thing to come from this is the fact that the topical events that become irrelevant or passe here aren't as painful and in-your-face as it is on the latter-day episodes of The Simpsons (unless you're watching the episode "Decision 3012", which was nothing but a thinly-veiled reference to the "birthers" who think Barack Obama doesn't have a birth certificate and isn't legally a U.S. citizen, though that episode was considered bad because of its heavy-handed politics, not because of dated references).
  • What an Idiot!: Dan McMasters from "Murder on the Planet Express". After terrifying the crew and making them overly paranoid of a potential shape-shifting monster, he then has the "bright" idea of trying to calm Fry and Bender down even though they're both now scared out of their minds, and he does so without bringing the rest of the still-alive Planet Express crew with him to prove that he's telling the truth. All things considered, he probably deserved what happened to him.

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