Bender's Big Score

Bender's Big Score feels like a lovingly chosen, hand-wrapped gift delivered personally to me, or, more broadly, to Futurama fans everywhere. The more you scrutinised the original 72-episode series of Futurama, the more you will get out of this movie - it is thronging with references upon callbacks upon cameos upon explanations for the previously-unexplained. Like the Family Guy movie, it does feel a little choppy in places - it is, after all, apparently put together from (at least) four separate proposed episode plots for a new Futurama series - but it doesn't feel like those four episodes could easily be separated out from each other. The plots all depend enough upon each other to form a cohesive and, yes, pretty much irreducibly complex structure. The result is quite definitely one 90-minute episode, not four 22-minute ones.

The stakes are upped massively in this episode: reappearing characters include Al Gore, the Harlem Globetrotters, Hedonism Bot, the Nibblonians, Hypnotoad, Yancy Fry, Philip Fry Jr., Robot Santa, it goes on and on and on... The ludicrously complex timeline which falls out from it feels like it was created specifically to keep me, Sam Hughes, happy.

And it is SO funny. A Terrifying Message From Al Gore worried me because it was poorly animated, poorly acted and not particularly funny; I needn't have worried. All the jokes are still there. Smart jokes.

This is an animated cartoon which features the word "Wronskian".

I have so much more that I want to comment on but I will refrain because I'll only ruin every single punchline and plot point. Pre-order it immediately, while I get to work on updating the Timeline.

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