The Lesser of Two Evils

"The Lesser of Two Evils"
Futurama episode
Futurama 210 - Lesser of Two Evils.jpg
Flexo fights Bender.
Episode no. Season two
Episode 6
Directed by Chris Sauve
Written by Eric Horsted
Production code 2ACV06
Original air date February 20, 2000
Opening caption "The Show that Watches Back"
Opening cartoon Felix the Cat Trifles with Time (1925)
Guest stars

Bob Barker as himself

Season two episodes
List of all Futurama episodes

"The Lesser of Two Evils" is episode six in season two of Futurama. It originally aired in North America on February 20, 2000.

A still from a scene in the episode involving Fry has become an internet meme. [1]

Contents

Plot

While visiting the Past-o-rama theme park, Fry runs over a robot with an uncanny resemblance to Bender. They bring him back to the Planet Express building, where Professor Farnsworth repairs him. The robot's name is Flexo, and like Bender, he is a bending unit. The only physical difference between the two is that Flexo has a goatee. Bender and Flexo hit it off, but Flexo soon begins to grate on the nerves of Fry, who suspects him of being evil, despite his behavior being similar to Bender's.

The Professor reveals an atom of the fictional element Jumbonium, which the crew is to deliver to the Miss Universe pageant, to be held on Tova 9. Due to the value of the atom, the Professor hires Flexo as additional security.

Leela assigns Fry, Bender, and Flexo shifts guarding the atom, but when Fry's shift comes up he falls asleep due to staying up during all of Flexo's shift, and the atom is stolen. Fry not only suspects Flexo, but believes he has disguised himself as Bender. After Bender re-establishes his identity, Fry, Leela, and Bender head off to inform pageant host Bob Barker's head of the theft.

They burst into the contest in pursuit of Flexo, and he and Bender start to fight. At the end of the fight, Bender's chest cavity door is knocked open, revealing the atom. Flexo tells the rest of the crew that he had seen Bender steal the atom and left to inform Bob Barker. Leela learns that Zapp Brannigan is one of the judges.

With the atom recovered, and Flexo accidentally imprisoned for Bender's crime due to Bob Barker's disinterest in his identity, the pageant concludes with a giant paramecium being crowned Miss Universe, only after Leela is mistakenly crowned first due to a miscommunication from Zapp.

Broadcast and reception

In its initial airing, the episode received a Nielsen rating of 4.4/8, placing it 87th among primetime shows for the week of February 14-20, 2000.[2]

Production

In the audio commentary of the show, David X. Cohen states that this episode was the only one to which he gave his artistic input. Halfway through the episode when Fry, Bender and Flexo are at a robot strip club, a robot stripper with a strange gear oriented design can be seen. Cohen claims that he drew the robot himself. [3]

Continuity

  • In this episode, Bender mistakes a telephone booth for a suicide booth while at Past-o-Rama. In "Space Pilot 3000", Fry mistakes a suicide booth for a telephone booth (which is how he met Bender). Bender also mistakes the telephone booth as a suicide booth in Bender's Big Score after having gone back to Old New York to exterminate Fry.
  • The Crushinator, from "Episode Two: The Series Has Landed" is seen in this episode.
  • Flexo has a cameo in Attack of the Killer App.

Characters

Characters making their first appearances in this episode are:

  • Flexo

Miss Universe Contestants:

  • Miss Arrakis: A horned, blue humanoid with flippers.
  • Miss Perfect Little: Squat, black creature with tendrils, and many eyes and breasts.
  • Miss Vega 4: A giant purple paramecium, Miss Universe 3000's winner.
  • Miss Heaven: A green energy being.
  • Miss Pluto: A pink haired, blue humanoid.
  • Miss Demeanor: A turquoise, hoofed alien that bears antennae.
  • Miss Methane Planet: Halatina Smogmire, a footless alien consisting of purple methane gas.
  • Miss Earth's Moon: The Crushinator, an enormous pink robot that doubles as a car.
  • Miss Un-named Planet #2856-B: She is green, with orange hair and a trumpet for a nose. Zapp Brannigan apparently likes her.

Cultural references

While guarding the Jumbonium atom, Bender is reading pentium-house, a reference to the pornographic magazine Penthouse.

Flexo's goatee is a reference to the Star Trek episode "Mirror, Mirror", in which Spock's evil twin sports a similar goatee.

The planet Tova Nine is a reference to Tova Borgnine.

The strip bar that Fry, Flexo, and Bender visit is called Electric Ladyland, a reference to the album of the same name by The Jimi Hendrix Experience.

References

External links


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