Zoidberg, of all people, finds love.
Zoidberg (Billy West) has been online dating an alien woman named Zindy (Tress MacNeille). Fry, Bender, and Leela (West, John DiMaggio, and Katey Sagal) help Zoidberg clean out his dumpster and a bug bomb leads Bender to be discovered by Fry’s friend Randy (DiMaggio), who invites Bender to try tap dancing. Zoidberg buys some flowers for Zindy, but when she meets him, she can’t stand the way he smells and leaves him. Zoidberg tries to return the flowers to the florist, Marianne (Emilia Clarke), who reveals that she cannot give him a refund as she is broke. The pair are attacked by Roberto (David Herman), but Zoidberg’s stench drives him away. Marianne is impressed by his bravery, revealing she has no sense of smell, and the two begin to date. At the same time, Bender discovers that a six-year-old tap dancer with a heart condition named Tonya (Tara Strong) is his main rival. He attempts to defeat her through cheating, only for her to break his leg with a baton.
Zoidberg is happy with Marianne, but she laments being unable to smell. Zoidberg agrees to give her a nose transplant after initially hiding it from her, even though it means that she will likely break up with him immediately. Bender asks for help with his broken leg, but Zoidberg is too busy prepping to do Marianne’s surgery. As Bender and Tonya try to compete, she mocks him mercilessly and ends up winning. In the middle of her award speech, she has a heart attack and dies. Bender dances on her corpse, but inadvertently revives her, causing the audience to love him. Marianne awakens and smells something horrible when Zoidberg brings her flowers, but she realizes that she hates the smell of the flowers, not Zoidberg. She points out that she loves the way Zoidberg smells, because she loves him. She becomes a garbage truck driver and they live happily ever after, I assume.
I genuinely love this episode because it finally gives Zoidberg the happy ending that he mostly deserves. It’s true that Zoidberg is sometimes a jerk, but most of the time he gets hit with a lot more than he has merited. He lives in a dumpster because he’s poor despite the fact that, according to Farnsworth, he’d be a great doctor if he was on any planet other than Earth. Even more, he’s only here because he’s friends with Farnsworth, despite the fact that Farnsworth doesn’t pay him enough to live indoors. It’s really sad when you think about it, particularly since we’ve had multiple episodes about Zoidberg being forever alone. This episode finally gives him happiness and does it in a genuinely sweet way, especially when you realize that he is willing to sacrifice his relationship to help the woman he loves. As the penultimate episode, this one gives us closure on Zoidberg and that just leaves Fry and Leela for the finale.
I will also add that I think the subplot about Bender fighting a young tap dancer who Tonya Hardings him is hilarious. Bender, who is a vicious competitor and an outright criminal, still calls her a monster and, moreover, appears to be correct. It’s hilarious to watch Bender be outdone by a small child. It’s even funnier to watch him dance on the dead body of a small child and for him to be horrified that he accidentally resurrects her. It’s really among the lowest things Bender has ever done, although it does lead to their odd friendship and partnership.
Overall, solid episode. One more to go!
The bug bombs that they use to get rid of the roaches in Zoidberg’s dumpster are called “Hal’s Roach Bombs.” This is a reference to Hal Roach, the director of several Laurel and Hardy films, as well as the creator of the Our Gang series, better known now as The Little Rascals. The bug bomb’s slogan is, hilariously, “Kills the Little Rascals.” Look, if you can’t laugh at jokes about killing characters from the 1920s, what can you laugh at?
See you next week, meatbags.
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