Futurama (season 5)

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Futurama (season 5)
DVD covers
Country of originUnited States
No. of episodes16
Original networkComedy Central
Original releaseMarch 23, 2008 (2008-03-23) –
August 30, 2009 (2009-08-30)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 4
Next →
Season 6
List of Futurama episodes

The fifth season of Futurama began airing in March 2008 and concluded after 16 episodes on August 30, 2009. All episodes were TV edits of the four DVD movies (originally released between November 2007 and February 2009), split into four episodes each. This list refers to the TV versions.


Futurama was initially cancelled by Fox, in 2003, due to low ratings.[1][2] However, in late 2002, Cartoon Network acquired exclusive cable syndication rights to Futurama for a reported $10 million.[3] In January 2003,[3] the network began airing Futurama episodes as the centerpiece to the expansion of their Adult Swim cartoon block.[4] In October 2005, Comedy Central picked up the cable syndication rights to air Futurama's 72-episode run at the start of 2008, following the expiration of Cartoon Network's contract. It was cited as the largest and most expensive acquisition in the network's history. In 2005, it began airing every night, followed by South Park.[5] A Comedy Central teaser trailer announced the return of Futurama March 23, 2008,[6] which was Bender's Big Score divided into four episodes followed by the other three movies. The series also airs in syndication in many countries around the world.

When Comedy Central began negotiating for the rights to air Futurama reruns, Fox suggested that there was a possibility of also creating new episodes. Negotiations were already underway with the possibility of creating two or three straight-to-DVD films. When Comedy Central committed to sixteen new episodes, it was decided that four films would be produced.[7] On April 26, 2006, Groening noted in an interview that co-creator David X. Cohen and numerous writers from the original series would be returning to work on the movies.[8] All the original voice actors participated. In February 2007, Groening explained the format of the new stories: "[The crew is] writing them as movies and then we're going to chop them up, reconfigure them, write new material and try to make them work as separate episodes."[9]

The first movie, Futurama: Bender's Big Score, was written by Ken Keeler and Cohen, and includes return appearances by the Nibblonians, Seymour, Barbados Slim, Robot Santa, the "God" space entity, Al Gore, and Zapp Brannigan.[10] It was animated in widescreen and was released on standard DVD on November 27, 2007, with a possible Blu-ray Disc release to follow.[11] A release on HD DVD was rumored but later officially denied. Futurama: Bender's Big Score was the first DVD release for which 20th Century Fox implemented measures intended to reduce the total carbon footprint of the production, manufacturing, and distribution processes. Where it was not possible to completely eliminate carbon output, carbon offsets were used. They refer to the changed processes as "carbon neutral".[12]

The second movie, The Beast with a Billion Backs, was released on June 24, 2008. The third movie, Bender's Game was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc[13] on November 3, 2008 in the UK, November 4, 2008 in the USA, and December 10, 2008 in Australia. The fourth movie, Into the Wild Green Yonder, was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on February 23, 2009.[14]

Since no new Futurama projects were originally in production at the time, the movie Into the Wild Green Yonder was designed to stand as the Futurama series finale. However, Groening had expressed a desire to continue the franchise in some form, including as a theatrical film.[15] In an interview with CNN, Groening said that "we have a great relationship with Comedy Central and we would love to do more episodes for them, but I don't know... We're having discussions and there is some enthusiasm but I can't tell if it's just me."[16]

On June 9, 2009, 20th Century Fox announced that Comedy Central had picked up the show for 26 new half-hour episodes that began airing in mid-2010.[17][18][19] A smaller writing crew returned.[20]


No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
Bender's Big ScoreDwayne Carey-HillStory by : Ken Keeler & David X. Cohen
Teleplay by : Ken Keeler
March 23, 2008 (2008-03-23)5ACV01
As Fry learns he has a tattoo of Bender on his buttocks that has universal consequences, nudist alien scammers take over Planet Express and brainwash Bender via a virus to do their bidding. Meanwhile, Leela meets the man of her dreams and Hermes (literally) loses his head during a game of limbo. Using the power of time travel tattooed on Fry's buttocks, the scammers hatch a plan to steal history's most valuable riches. Fry escapes back to the 20th century while Bender is dispatched back in time to kill him. Meanwhile, Leela grows ever closer to her new boyfriend and Hermes gets a new body. Though the scammers release Bender from their control and the tattoo on Fry's buttocks is destroyed, more and more people find themselves being scammed onto the streets. Meanwhile, Leela is getting married to her new boyfriend, and Fry discovers what his life could have been like in the 21st century. After Leela's heart (and Hermes' body) are broken at her wedding, the scammers ultimately banish Earth's inhabitants to the corners of the solar system, leading to an intergalactic battle to reclaim Earth. And as the shocking truth of Leela's fiancé is revealed, Bender becomes an unlikely hero.
The Beast with a Billion BacksPeter AvanzinoStory by : Eric Kaplan & David X. Cohen
Teleplay by : Eric Kaplan
October 19, 2008 (2008-10-19)5ACV05
When a mysterious tear appears in the universe, Professor Farnsworth mounts an expedition to explore whatever lies on the other side. Meanwhile, as Kif and Amy take their relationship to the next level, Fry discovers his new girlfriend may be spreading her love even further than he can handle. After the Professor's expedition ends with disaster, a military action is proposed, though it strikes a devastating blow that hits too close to Amy's heart when it costs Kif his life. Meanwhile, Fry decides to live in the universe on the other side of the tear as Bender joins the secret robot society of his dreams. Fry has fallen in love with a colossal tentacled monster from beyond the tear, which begins spreading its influence (and its tentacles) everywhere. Meanwhile, Amy deals with Kif's death, Bender builds his human-hating reputation in his new club, and Leela reveals a shocking truth about the monster. The tentacled monster asks everyone in the universe out on a date, eventually leading Earth's population to evacuate the planet so they can live on its body. Meanwhile, the monster brings Kif back to life, and Bender, left in charge of the abandoned robots on Earth, takes drastic measures to bring everyone back.
Bender's GameDwayne Carey-HillStory by : Eric Horsted & David X. Cohen
Teleplay by : Eric Horsted & Michael Rowe & David X. Cohen & Patric M. Verrone
April 26, 2009 (2009-04-26)5ACV09
Leela's anger gets the better of her when she wastes precious gas and enters the Space Demolition Derby. In fact, it has gotten the better of her so many times that Farnsworth and Hermes decide to do something about it. Meanwhile, Bender becomes too obsessed with playing Dungeons and Dragons. Farnsworth reveals why he's so angry about the dark matter shortage crisis. Bender is not progressing at the insane asylum. Fry, Leela, and Farnsworth infiltrate Mom's Alaskan headquarters. Fry, Leela and Farnsworth discover the shocking truth behind the dark matter shortage, and suddenly find themselves in the magical world of Cornwood where the knights strangely look like robots and the wizard's headquarters look strangely like outhouses. Frydo becomes obsessed with the Die of Power and flees the Fellowship. Leegola joins the centaurs and becomes a pacifist, and Gynecaladriel, Greyfarn, and Titanius are besieged at Wipe Castle.
Into the Wild Green YonderPeter AvanzinoStory by : Ken Keeler & David X. Cohen
Teleplay by : Ken Keeler
August 30, 2009 (2009-08-30)5ACV13
The Planet Express crew visits Amy's parents, Leo and Inez, who are destroying the "old" Mars Vegas and constructing a more extravagant one. A group of eco-feminists, led by Frida Waterfall, protesting the destruction of the environment, leads to an accident wherein a piece of Frida's jewelry lodges inside Fry's brain granting him telepathy. The destruction upsets Leela, but Leo asserts that he has received environmental clearance — from a bribed Professor Farnsworth. Unconvinced, Leela saves a Martian muck leech, the last of its species, from the site. Hutch introduces Fry to the "Legion of Mad Fellows", a secret society of other tin foil hat wearing telepaths led by the No. 9 man. Fry learns that the violet dwarf is the only surviving egg of the Encyclopods, a now-extinct species which evolved to preserve the DNA of all endangered life forms and recreate extinct species. Leo enlists Zapp Brannigan and Kif Kroker to capture the eco-feminists and Fry infiltrates Leo's empire as a security guard. Fry later runs into Frida and has her take a discreet message of support to Leela, but an unseen Dark One later murders Frida. Farnsworth, Zoidberg and Hermes are captured by the eco-feminists (now joined by Amy, LaBarbara Conrad and others), who commandeer the Planet Express ship. Fry and Leela arrange a rendezvous which is ambushed by the eavesdropping Zapp in the Nimbus. The eco-feminists are captured and sent to prison. Fry learns from the Legion that the Dark One will be present at the implosion of the violet dwarf and is sent to thwart it using an Omega Device. Meanwhile, Leela and the other eco-feminists are sent to prison, but are broken out by Bender and taken by the Planet Express employees to stop the implosion ceremony. At the ceremony, Fry tries to identify the Dark One among everyone else present through its unreadable mind, but finds no one and concludes he must be the Dark One since his mind is unreadable. Leela and the others arrive and to disrupt the ceremony, but Fry convinces Leela to let him proceed. He activates the Omega Device to destroy himself, but it instead affects Leela's leech, which reveals itself as the Dark One. The violet dwarf system turns into a sperm and enters the star, which develops into an adult Encyclopod. The Dark One kills Hutch, who removes the ring from Fry's brain as his dying act, depriving Fry of his telepathy. The Encyclopod destroys the Dark One and leaves after preserving humanity's DNA. Zapp tries to have everyone arrested, and they go on the run. The Planet Express crew encounters a wormhole and decides to enter it, not knowing where it will lead them. Fry and Leela profess their love for each other and kiss as the ship enters.


IGN had mostly positive reviews on the 4 DVD movie releases of the season.[21][22][23][24]

Home releases[edit]

Futurama: The Collected Epics
Release Dates Set Details
A boxset containing the four Futurama feature-length DVD releases in their entirety.
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
N/A October 19, 2009 November 4, 2009[25]
Futurama: Bender's Big Score
Set details Special features
DVD release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
November 27, 2007 April 7, 2008 March 5, 2008[26]
Futurama: The Beast with a Billion Backs
Set details Special features
DVD release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
June 24, 2008 June 30, 2008 August 6, 2008[27]
Futurama: Bender's Game
Set details Special features
  • Optional commentary, by Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Billy West, John DiMaggio, Tress MacNeille, Michael Rowe, Claudia Katz and Dwayne Carey-Hill
  • Storyboard animatic - Bender's Game, Part 1
  • "Futurama Genetics Lab"
  • "D&D&F (Dungeons & Dragons & Futurama)" featurette
  • "How to Draw Futurama in 83 Easy Steps" featurette
  • 3D Models with animator discussion
  • Deleted scene
  • "Blooperama 2" cast outtakes from Bender's Game
  • "Bender's Anti-Piracy Warning" featurette
  • "Into The Wild Green Yonder" preview
  • Billy West line attempt easter egg
  • "David X. Cohen's Dodecahedron Collection" easter egg
DVD release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
November 4, 2008 November 3, 2008 December 10, 2008[28]
Blu-ray Disc release dates
Region A Region B Europe Region B Australia
November 4, 2008 November 3, 2008 December 10, 2008[29]
Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder
Set details Special features
  • Optional commentary, by Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, John DiMaggio, Maurice LaMarche, Patric M. Verrone, Michael Rowe, Lee Supercinski and Peter Avanzino.
  • Storyboard animatic - Into The Wild Green Yonder, Part 1
  • "Docudramarama" featurette
  • "Louder, Louder!" featurette on the acting technique of Penn Jillette
  • "Golden Stinkers" - deleted scenes
  • "Matt Groening and David X. Cohen in Space!" featurette
  • "How to Draw Futurama in 10 very difficult steps" featurette
  • 3D Models, with animator discussion
  • "Bender's Movie Theatre Etiquette" featurette
  • "Zapp Brannigan's Guide To Making Love At A Woman" featurette
  • Toilet paper animation easter egg.
  • Zapp Brannigan speech easter egg
DVD release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
February 24, 2009 February 23, 2009 March 4, 2009[30]
Blu-ray Disc release dates
Region A Region B Europe Region B Australia
February 24, 2009 February 23, 2009 March 4, 2009[31]


  1. ^ "Fox Says 'No' to 'Futurama'". Zap2it. February 12, 2002. Archived from the original on July 13, 2009. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  2. ^ "Remember Me after my Death!". Can't Get Enough Futurama. May 15, 2003. Retrieved 2008-06-03. [sic]
  3. ^ a b "Toon Net Gets 'Futurama'". Daily Variety. September 9, 2002. Retrieved 2008-05-28.
  4. ^ "Adult Swim". Cartoon Network Pressroom. Archived from the original on 2008-01-02. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  5. ^ Dempsey, John (October 27, 2005). ""Futurama" in Comedy Central's future via big deal". Variety. Retrieved 2005-10-27.
  6. ^ "Silver screen Simpsons, Futurama facing finish?". BBC News. 2001-01-19. Archived from the original on 2003-04-19. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  7. ^ Katz, Claudia (2007-11-16). "Exclusive Interview: Claudia Katz on Futurama the Movie: Bender's Big Score" (Interview). Interviewed by Evan Jacobs. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  8. ^ Rabin, Nathan (2006-04-26). "Matt Groening". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  9. ^ "Rhymes with Raining". Crave Online. 2007-02-26. Archived from the original on 2009-02-15. Retrieved 2007-03-25.
  10. ^ "Ain't It Cool News: "Ben Sinister Has Read The New FUTURAMA 'Movie'!!"". Archived from the original on 2006-08-06. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  11. ^ (April 5, 2008). Tales of Interest: The Simpsons and Futurama in high-definition. HDTVTotal.com.
  12. ^ ""Futurama" Feature Length Movie DVD Specs". 2007-11-14. Archived from the original on 2008-04-06. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
  13. ^ Hornig, Andreas (2008-07-28). "Futurama's third direct-to-disc movie "Bender's Game" on Blu-ray". HDTVTotal.com. Retrieved 2008-08-10.
  14. ^ "Into the Wild Green Yonder at Blu-ray.com". Blu-ray.com. Retrieved 2009-02-23.
  15. ^ Wortham, Jenna (2008-11-04). "Futurama Animators Roll 20-Sided Die With Bender's Game". Wired.com. Retrieved 2009-02-28.
  16. ^ Leopold, Todd (2009-02-26). "Matt Groening looks to the future". CNN.com. Retrieved 2009-03-17.
  17. ^ Ausiello, Michael (2009-06-09). "It's official: 'Futurama' is reborn!". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on 2009-06-11. Retrieved 2009-06-09.
  18. ^ "'Futurama' Returns to Production with an initial order of 26 New Episodes to Premiere Mid 2010". Press Central Comedy Central Press Release. 2009-06-10. Archived from the original on 2011-06-05. Retrieved 2009-06-24.
  19. ^ Goldman, Eric (2009-06-09). "Futurama Return Made Official". IGN. Retrieved 2009-06-10.
  20. ^ Schneider, Michael (2009-06-09). "'Futurama' returns with new episodes". Variety. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
  21. ^ http://dvd.ign.com/articles/836/836327p1.html
  22. ^ http://dvd.ign.com/articles/884/884698p1.html
  23. ^ http://bluray.ign.com/articles/927/927779p1.html
  24. ^ http://dvd.ign.com/articles/956/956729p1.html
  25. ^ "Futurama: The Collected Epics (4 Disc Box Set)". EzyDVD. Archived from the original on February 8, 2016. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  26. ^ "Futurama: Bender's Big Score". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  27. ^ "Futurama: The Beast With a Billion Backs". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  28. ^ "Futurama: Bender's Game". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  29. ^ "Futurama: Bender's Game (Blu-ray)". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  30. ^ "Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
  31. ^ "Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder (Blu-ray)". EzyDVD. Retrieved August 19, 2013.