Now the third ep. of Futurama. Again the plot is really simple. In terms of stories, Futurama really didn’t hit its stride for quite a while. The funny was there the whole time, so the show was entertaining, but the lingering threads of story had yet to make the show great. In this episode, mimicking a sitcom, Fry tries to find an apartment. On the commentary track the producers say that this episode was suggested by Fox for a more down to earth story and when it was reluctantly done Fox hated it. I disagree with the hate. Coming in as the third episode, it is really the first time the viewer knows all of the players at the start of the show, so it is free of the set up stuff of the first two episodes. This is the first episode we see the characters just play their roles. And it is funny.
At the start of the episode, the other employees of Planet Express force Fry to stop living in the workspace because his hygiene and living habits are disgusting. So he moves in with Bender. Benders apartment is unfortunately small, so Fry has a hard time staying there. Leela suggests that they find another place together. After a humorously fruitless apartment search, one of Professor Farnsworth’s friends dies, so Fry and Bender take the opportunity to rent his former home. At their housewarming party, they discover that Bender’s antenna interferes with the television reception, so he gets kicked out while Fry chooses to stay. After a desperate, lonely week Bender cuts off his antenna.
After Fry sees the distress this causes his friend, they reattach it and move back to Bender’s place. There Bender has Fry put the housewarming gifts in the closet, which is the size of an apartment.
The story for this episode is nothing special, but the jokes are nonstop, and there are some really good bits, like the Odd Couple bit as they move into the apartment. Also, the second, or first depending on what day you ask me, best side character appears for the first time in this episode. I speak, of course, of the world greatest acting robot Calculon. He, and his robot soap opera All My Circuits are always hilarious. I really like the other cast members on that fictional show, Calculon’s fiancé Monique and his friends Boxy Robot and Human Friend. Also heard for the first time in this episode is frequent background character Randy, who is recognizable by his lisping voice. (And if you listen to the commentary tracks on the DVDs you’ll learn that John DiMaggio loves to do this voice.) This is a pretty good episode. It is really short on the Sci-Fi, but it is as funny as most other Futurama episodes.