At long last, we’re at the final finale of this fine series.
Fry, Leela, and Bender (Billy West, Katey Sagal, and John DiMaggio) make a delivery to the moon’s amusement park like they did on their first delivery. Leela nearly dies due to an accident and the near-death is too much for Fry, who decides to propose to Leela. At the same time, the Professor makes a 10 second rewind button, a device that allows someone to rewind the universe back 10 seconds, but takes 10 seconds to recharge, preventing a time paradox. Fry and Bender proceed to use it to steal diamonds for an engagement ring which he hides in a clam. Leela (eventually) gets the ring, but Fry doesn’t want to hear her answer, telling her instead to come to meet him on top of the Vampire State Building at 6:30 if she wants to marry him. 6:30 passes and Fry, despondent that Leela doesn’t want him, jumps off of the building, only to see her and realize that, due to how much he’d used the button, his watch was off by hours. He tries to undo the fall, but he had jumped 11 seconds before, dooming him to fall.
Fortunately, the Professor was in the “time shelter,” a small spot immune to the rewinds, and, along with the rest of the crew, makes his way to the building. Unfortunately, he exits the time shelter and, having not existed during the last reset, has his atoms scattered. The rest of the crew manage to save Fry, but Fry lands on the button and breaks it, freezing the universe for everyone but him and Leela. The two then get married and spend their lives together traveling all over the frozen world. Now old, the pair return to the Vampire State Building to drink the champagne Fry poured. They celebrate their happy life together, only for the Professor to appear, having tunneled through time. He fixes the button and tells them he can undo the whole thing, taking everyone back to when he invented the time button, but Fry and Leela won’t remember it. Fry asks Leela if she wants to “go around again,” to which she replies lovingly “I do.”
Futurama had four finales: “The Devil’s Hands are Idle Playthings,” “Into the Wild Green Yonder,” “Overclockwise,” and this one. Somehow, against all odds, all four of them are above average episodes of the show and, even more remarkably, I believe that this episode is the best of all four. This episode starts off with a throwback to the second episode by showing the gang at Luna Park (at which Bender, predictably, assaults the mascot again). They also immediately mock the fact that, as the show had gone on, the entire “delivery company” aspect had mostly fallen to the wayside, including having Leela, the one who originally was defined by her dedication to a job well done, carelessly chuck a package marked “Fragile.” This is, surprisingly, most of the tribute to the series’ origins in this episode, which is quickly followed up by Leela’s near-death which, believably, convinces Fry to try and propose to her (technically for the second time, since they were married in “Time Keeps on Slippin’.” The difference is that Fry has grown as a character in the interim and, while he’s still immature, he has progressed a lot.
The episode artificially heightens the tension throughout by having both of the leads in mortal peril for quite a lot of the runtime, which makes the third act all the more amazing. The constant threat of death contrasts with the long, isolated life that Fry and Leela live together in a frozen world. While it appears that Fry and Leela could eventually die of old age, anything else is unlikely to take them out, since nothing moves. No, I’m not sure how they eat or breathe or other science facts. You should repeat to yourself it’s just a show; you should really just relax.
What really sets this episode apart as a finale is that it really and truly builds slowly up to the great emotional climax and, unlike most episodes of Futurama that go the tearjerker route, it’s based on joy instead of sadness (like losing a certain dog). Fry and Leela spent such a happy life together that, despite it being just the two of them, Leela doesn’t even hesitate to want to spend another life together. Having watched these two from the moment that they first met, this really is the heart of the show. Fry and Leela finally get their happy ending and it’s just wonderful.
Overall, just a great finale. Now, I just have to review “Simpsorama,” the Simpsons/Futurama crossover, and that’ll be it for Futurama Fridays episodes.
They finally did the direct Star Trek: The Next Generation Picard parody with Hermes telling the computer “Computer, Jamaican Joy Juice, hot.” This is a reference to the famous Picard order: “Tea, Earl Grey, Hot.” Hilariously, after the computer apparently materializes the drink, Hermes then smashes the glass container surrounding it in order to drink it. Presumably you have to destroy the replicator after every use in Futurama. Also, weirdly, “Jamaican Joy Juice” is not a thing. The only definition I could find was on Urban Dictionary and, as you would expect, it has to do with bodily fluids.
See you next week, meatbags.
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