March 2, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Simpsons Did It!: “Simpsorama”

In which, as the opening credits tell us, a show that is out of ideas meets up with a show that is out of episodes.

Futurama fans may recall an early episode of that series where a garbage asteroid was threatening New New York, and during a visit to try and blow the thing up, Fry, Leela, and Bender discover a pile of Bart Simpson dolls, suggesting the Simpsons are fictional characters in the Futurama world.

You might want to forget that.

In the meantime, it seems to be time capsule day at Springfield Elementary.  All the kids in Bart’s class are tossing in items to be seen a thousand years in the future, but did Bart remember?  Well, no.  He just goes to toss in an unfinished sandwich (somehow Marge knows!), and when challenged, he blows his nose in it first.  Afterwards, the capsule is buried in the park where some sickly green ooze is coming out of the hole, something Mr. Burns swears he had nothing to do with in his least convincing tones.

But then that night during a thunderstorm, someone breaks into the Simpson house.  Marge sends Homer to look, and he takes Bart and Santa’s Little Helper.  Trying to shove the dog down to the basement to investigate gets Homer bitten.  Trying to send Bart down to the basement to investigate likewise gets Homer bitten.  Hanging Bart from the ceiling with a sign labeling him a “tasty boy” doesn’t really work either, but when the mystery man clearly goes for Homer’s beers, that’s a step too far.

But it turns out the mystery man is no man at all, but a robot named Bender.

You know, we’ve seen Bender on this show before, but always in future tales and stuff like that.

But this time, he’s on a mission.  He just doesn’t remember what it is.  Homer offers to be his friend, and the two hit it off, possibly because Bart and Lisa notice Bender looks like their father with an antenna.  The man and ‘bot go slam beers at Moe’s, where Bender pretends to buy a round for everyone without actually paying for anything, and then cheating at bowling.  Lisa is suspicious, though, and takes Bender to see Professor Frink to make sure the robot really is from the future.  A quick reboot tells Bender his mission:  kill Homer.  Homer is responsible for something bad.

Fortunately, Bender can’t hurt his new buddy.  And then a portal in Bender’s chest pops out Fry, Leela, and Professor Farnsworth.  This whole “killing Homer” thing is taking too long.  It seems some weird rabbit monsters are wrecking everything and they’ve got Homer’s DNA.  They even killed my favorite Futurama character, Scruffy.  OK, they really killed his mustache, but then he has no reason to live and kills himself.  Boo!

Well, killing Homer is now off the table, so Farnsworth, Frink (who Farnsworth thinks is little better than a child in terms of intellect), and Lisa stay behind to check the DNA while Homer takes the others home.  Good news, everyone (that always means bad news), the DNA is only half-Homer.  The other half is Marge.  They only have to kill the Simpson children, or more accurately Bart.  It seems the sandwich and the radioactive ooze interacted with Milhouse’s rabbit’s foot in the time capsule and made…those things that have since mutated into Bart-like gremlins.  And before the Simpsons and their guests can dig up the capsule and stop that, the critters get into the time apparatus and suck most everyone back to the 31st century.  Who’s left?  Bender and Maggie.  Bender knows the winners of every horse race and just takes Maggie to the track.

As it is, Lisa saves the day by suggesting they just somehow launch the Barties into space, like they do with the Superbowl losers every year.  That seems more efficient than Homer’s plan to simply rip the heads off the things one at a time.  Besides, Marge is disappointed in the future.  She oughta be.  Farnsworth assures her that, mathematically speaking, his time is the worst of all possible futures.

But Lisa’s plan works because no one knows better than her how to get Bart to do anything, and the future is saved and the Simpsons go home.  As for Bender, since he is the time portal he can’t use it, so he will go back to the future the old fashioned way by putting himself into sleep mode for a thousand years.  And Homer is so amazed and touched by his new friend, he just dumps the robot in the basement next to the Christmas lights.

As for the future itself, it’s cleaning up nicely, and the Barties are on planet Omicron Persei 8, where Lrr and his wife are welcoming dinner guests Kang and Kodos.

Turns out Kang and Kodos are both female.  Who knew?