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Author Topic: Bring on Season 7! - General Futurama Discussion  (Read 31172 times)
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Scrappylive

Professor
*
« Reply #680 on: 02-13-2012 21:42 »

It's the Matt Groening Theory of Comedy. People love to watch and listen to characters getting hurt so long as there is no emphasis on the person causing the harm. If they have two people fighting, they will include the sounds of pain and agony but not the sounds of exerting force.

Pain = Funny
Causing pain = Creepy
Solid Gold Bender

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #681 on: 02-13-2012 21:45 »

In other words, half of the jokes in Beavis and Butthead. I think Groening gets good gags out of all types of comic situations. For example; pain, dumbness, great one liners ("You Win Again, Gravity!"), sexual gags, and some stereotypes. Oh, and I forgot spoofs! Spoofs are a great form of gags, especially if you're familiar with what's being spoofed...smile
Inquisitor Hein
Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #682 on: 02-26-2012 15:41 »

and some stereotypes.

Yep...that's also my major criticism regarding Groening. He dares to go against CERTAIN stereotypes, but will shy away from other groups for reasons of "political correctness".

This is one of the few cases where MacFarlane imhO clearly has an edge on Groening...
Solid Gold Bender

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #683 on: 02-29-2012 22:21 »

Looking forward to the next 13 episodes! It doesn't seem like there's any bad ideas at all...
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #684 on: 03-05-2012 02:22 »
« Last Edit on: 03-05-2012 02:27 »

Okay, I'm half a year late but I finally finished watching season 6B for the first time. big grin

Also, just before that, I rewatched 6A. As I'm sure everyone remembers from when I last posted, a year and a half ago, I was pretty down on 6A. And I still am. smile

But I definitely was underrating Prisoner of Benda; that's a great episode. I think 6A had a couple of episodes that were easily the best, most standout of the season. But overall I found 6B more consistently decent-ish.

Here is my ranking of the season, accompanied by mini-review-things that I wrote somewhere else that's not important, right after watching each 6A episode for the second time, and each 6B episode for the first time:

1. The Late Philip J. Fry
2. Prisoner of Benda
3. Möbius Dick
4. Holiday Val-U-Pack
5. Cold Warriors
6. Reincarnation
7. Lethal Inspection
8. Ghost in the Machines
9. The Duh-Vinci Code
10. Overclockwise
11. Benderama
12. Fry Am the Egg Man
13. The Silence of the Clamps
14. A Clockwork Origin
15. The Tip of the Zoidberg
16. That Darn Katz
17. Neutopia
18. Rebirth
19. Law and Oracle
20. All the President's Heads
21. In-a-Gadda-da-Leela
22. Yo Leela Leela!
23. Proposition Infinity
24. The Mutants are Revolting
25. Lrrreconcilable Ndndifferences
26. Attack of the Killer App

So yeah. I got some flak last time I was here when I said I thought only The Late Philip J. Fry lived up to the show in it's original run. After seeing the second half of the season, and re-seeing the first, I'll say that there's a solid half-a-dozen-or-so episodes that are definitely worthy of the show, despite the fact that I feel the quality of the writing and direction has generally gone down from the original run. These episodes make the season worthwhile. And while I wouldn't say I'm excited for Season 7, like 6B I'll certainly watch it when it comes to blu-ray.

totalnerd undercanada

DOOP Ubersecretary
**
« Reply #685 on: 03-05-2012 02:32 »

I don't see how "Rebirth" represents a dip in quality compared to the original run if episodes like the Holiday Spectactular don't. Makes me wonder if you were sniffing those dry-erase markers you mentioned when you wrote this review.

I agree with a lot of the other things you've said though.

I do feel I should mention that there's quite a bit to be excited about for Season 7 - the writers should have gotten back into their groove and be ready to bust out something of a higher average quality. Hopefully.
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #686 on: 03-05-2012 02:48 »

haha, I was surprised by how much people on here hated Holiday Spectacular. It's so good! laff
Scrappylive

Professor
*
« Reply #687 on: 03-05-2012 02:52 »

I think it's better than Yo Leela Leela, but only Yo Leela Leela.


I gave this episode a 6 out of 10. The humor is present and I enjoy the Kwanzaa song, but this is easily one of the worst episodes in terms of story development. Let's compare the three acts' storylines:

XMAS
The crew explains Xmas through song with Robot Santa.
To celebrate Xmas properly, they need a pine tree, which can't be easily produced.
The crew travels to Norway to acquire what they need.
They achieve their goal, but the act ends with the world ending as a result of their plan.

ROBANUKAH
Bender explains Robanukah through song.
To celebrate Robanukah properly, they need petroleum oil, which can't be easily produced.
The crew travels inside the Earth to acquire what they need.
They achieve their goal, but the act ends with the crew dying as a result of their plan.

KWANZAA
The Conrads explain Kwanzaa through song with Kwanzaabot.
To celebrate Kwanzaa properly, they need beeswax, which can't be easily produced.
The crew travels to the space bee hive to acquire what they need.
They achieve their goal, but the act ends with the crew imprisoned as candles as a result of their plan.


Following this breakdown, we see how repetitive this episode really is. The story writing is far below what I expect from the Futurama crew, but the episode is saved by the jokes and Kwanzaa song.
Solid Gold Bender

Urban Legend
***
« Reply #688 on: 03-05-2012 02:53 »

No, it's not. It has a bunch of bland and tasteless jokes thrown into 3 repetitive stories. Some of the lines just pissed me off...no no You don't have a great sense of determining the ranks of episodes. The day FHS is better than Law & Oracle, my ass will be shiny and made of metal.

Edit: scrappy beat me to it! Damn!
Scrappylive

Professor
*
« Reply #689 on: 03-05-2012 02:58 »

And you beat me to my/our guess on the food game thread. Two great minds emulate each other. wink

I think my review was a bit generous, though. FHS is probably more of a 4.5 - 5.5.
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #690 on: 03-05-2012 03:01 »

Heh, I'm not going to defend my position. I already articulated why I like it. I'm okay with holding the unpopular opinion on this one.  roll eyes
Scrappylive

Professor
*
« Reply #691 on: 03-05-2012 03:02 »

HE'S A WITCH! Attack him until he conforms to the popular opinion! tongue
UnrealLegend

Space Pope
****
« Reply #692 on: 03-05-2012 05:47 »

I've got no real problems with someone liking TFHS. We need at least a few weirdos on the planet. tongue

Hate to say this, but I disagree with most of what you posted. frown
Gorky

Space Pope
****
« Reply #693 on: 03-05-2012 16:44 »

You don't have a great sense of determining the ranks of episodes.

I've never thought of ranking episodes as something one has a sense for. It's kind of just a matter of taste. Like, I rate "Yo Leela Leela" as a 7/10 (which is my average-by-Futurama's-normally-high-standards score), and I know that's an unpopular opinion--but it totally adheres to my own set of ideas about Futurama's general quality, and my own personal tastes. So, like, I still think I am capable of ranking episodes, even if my ranks don't match up with anyone else's, because at least my system has a consistent internal logic. And the same goes for GreyThinkyWhale, and any other poster.

The above is not intended as a lecture--just as a reminder that rating anything is highly subjective. It's cool to debate another person based on their opinion of an episode, but it's futile to question their right to hold such an opinion in the first place. Or at least that's the assumption under which I've always operated on PEEL.

Also: GTW, I agree so much with your review of "Proposition Infinity." God, is that episode heavy-handed and almost unwatchable. I get that a lot of people like it, but I find it so validating to know that there's someone who thinks the satire is totally out-of-place and unsuccessful.
Inquisitor Hein
Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #694 on: 03-05-2012 17:17 »
« Last Edit on: 03-05-2012 17:23 »

Also: GTW, I agree so much with your review of "Proposition Infinity." God, is that episode heavy-handed and almost unwatchable. I get that a lot of people like it, but I find it so validating to know that there's someone who thinks the satire is totally out-of-place and unsuccessful.

I think many people like it just for putting Amy and Bender together. Though not suitable as a long running character constellation, the Amy/Bender pairing was a joke worth telling once (but only once;)). E.g. when Bender took that unexpected protective stance towards Amy, but then reverting to his old dirtbag ways with the distraction "A single mother...let's get her".  Also, Lauren's and Joe's voice acting was really great in that episode... Yep, the Amy/Bender couple scenes are imhO a reason to watch it again.

And about the social/political message: Okay, we do not have to talk about that one. It was a flat "This is the official, self-righteous position...everyone agreeing with it is good, everyone disagreeing with it is bad". A good satirist should be able to look at both sides, and -even when he decides to let one side "win" at the end- should also be able to find good and flawed reasons on both sides.

The best job dealing with that "both sides aspect" was imhO done by MacFarlane in "Excellence in broadcasting", when they still ridiculed Rush Limbaugh, but yet showed him some respect, using him as the "voice of reason" by telling Brian that he does not really agree with the Republicans, but just wants to remain in the opposition even under Obama.

It would't hurt if Matt once or twice took a closer look at plots like that wink
DannyJC13

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #695 on: 03-05-2012 17:36 »

Why am I seeing so many awful comments about good episodes and positive comments about pretty lame eps? This thread is awful!
Gorky

Space Pope
****
« Reply #696 on: 03-05-2012 17:45 »
« Last Edit on: 03-05-2012 17:47 »

I think many people like it just for putting Amy and Bender together. Though not suitable as a long running character constellation, the Amy/Bender pairing was a joke worth telling once (but only once;)). E.g. when Bender took that unexpected protective stance towards Amy, but then reverting to his old dirtbag ways with the distraction "A single mother...let's get her".  Also, Lauren's and Joe's voice acting was really great in that episode... Yep, the Amy/Bender couple scenes are imhO a reason to watch it again.

But the Amy/Bender stuff comes at the expense of Amy and Kif's relationship, which is what makes it so irritating to me. Their break-up is glossed-over and horribly contrived in act one (mirroring how glossed-over and horribly contrived Amy and Bender's eventual break-up is at the very end of the episode), doing no justice to what had heretofore been a really sweet, interesting romantic pairing. And what bothers me even more is how this established, newly-if-not-hastily-reunited (at the end of Wild Green Yonder) couple is broken up for the sake of a crappy plot (the gay marriage thing), not because of any organic, character-driven reason.

I would have been fine with a Kif and Amy break-up if the episode had given me some reason to believe it was the result of the strain put on their relationship post-"The Beast With a Billion Backs"--but that is not the case. Instead, we get this simplistic, Amy-is-a-slut-who-likes-bad-boys explanation for the whole thing, which flies in the face of all the progress her character made in, say, "Kif Gets Knocked Up a Notch." (Yes, Amy slept with Zapp in TBWaBB, but that in itself was not slutty; she was grief-stricken over Kif's "death," and Zapp took advantage of that pain. He is the villain in that instance, not Amy.)

But I've made this point in other threads, so I'll stop griping. Long story short, I just can't get on-board with the writers messing with Amy's character to serve a lousy-to-begin-with story. It bugs me beyond all reason.
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #697 on: 03-05-2012 20:21 »

And about the social/political message: Okay, we do not have to talk about that one. It was a flat "This is the official, self-righteous position...everyone agreeing with it is good, everyone disagreeing with it is bad". A good satirist should be able to look at both sides, and -even when he decides to let one side "win" at the end- should also be able to find good and flawed reasons on both sides.

Well, frankly I didn't think the other side was worth looking at in this case either. tongue That's not my problem with it. My problem was that it was just so blatantly and completely a satire of 2008 current issues. I can easily say what they could have done differently to make a great episode out of it because they already made that episode: I Dated a Robot. That episode had the robosexual relationship thing going on, but it also had... ideas... and imagination. And fun. And the space pope.
DannyJC13

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #698 on: 03-05-2012 20:31 »

No offence GreyThinkyWhale, your reviews suck.
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #699 on: 03-05-2012 20:46 »

Assuming you mean that because you disagree with me (and not because they're just shit reviews - in which case I should note that I didn't describe them as reviews but as "mini-review-things"), I refer you to Gorky's lecture (wink) on subjectivity a few posts up.
DannyJC13

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #700 on: 03-05-2012 20:49 »

No the reviews are fine at that length, it's just you claim to have enjoyed the new eps yet I've seen like twenty 1/5s and 2/5s and like one 4/5....
Gorky

Space Pope
****
« Reply #701 on: 03-05-2012 20:56 »

My problem was that it was just so blatantly and completely a satire of 2008 current issues. I can easily say what they could have done differently to make a great episode out of it because they already made that episode: I Dated a Robot. That episode had the robosexual relationship thing going on, but it also had... ideas... and imagination. And fun. And the space pope.

That episode worked (I mean, relatively-speaking--it's not one of my favorites or anything) because it wasn't really dealing with a loaded social or moral issue; illegally downloading stuff isn't as consequential or contentious a subject as gay marriage. (The don't-date-robots stuff in "I Dated a Robot" isn't blatantly drawn as a parallel to gay marriage, so I don't consider that the issue being tackled in that instance.)  There are fewer people to offend when you're talking about Napster than when you're talking about, you know, the hypocrisy of religious folks who are secretly aroused by the very practices they claim to find "unnatural." (That scene with the Preacherbot getting all hot and bothered by the robots dry-humping the human dolls is such a cliche-ridden oversimplification of why some people oppose gay marriage that it literally angries up my blood. Goddamn it, writers, you couldn't show a little decency?)

My problem with "Proposition Infinity" is that it tries to be satirical without really doing what good satire should do: show the flaws and merits of both sides of the debate. I agree that gay marriage ought to be legal and that a number of the people who oppose it do so for poor and indefensible reasons; however, it's lazy writing to demonize the group with whom you disagree, and unquestioningly exalt the other, "correct" group. And that's exactly what happens in PI. It doesn't have a sense of humor about its own viewpoint, and a lot of the jokes it makes at the expense of the anti-gay marriage crowd are mean-spirited and (even worse) uninspired. Again, I've said this so much before that I'm sure I sound like a broken record, but it bears repeating: You know you've failed at satire when you manage to piss off someone who agrees with your ideology.

So I still agree with you that "Proposition Infinity" is crappy, GTW. I'm just being even more nitpicky about why that is, mostly because I really hate the episode. It's honestly my own pick for Worst Episode Ever.
Inquisitor Hein
Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #702 on: 03-05-2012 21:29 »

My problem with "Proposition Infinity" is that it tries to be satirical without really doing what good satire should do: show the flaws and merits of both sides of the debate.

Well, frankly I didn't think the other side was worth looking at in this case either. tongue

Sadly, it seems Groening went exactly for what some people want...


GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #703 on: 03-05-2012 21:44 »
« Last Edit on: 03-05-2012 22:17 »

No the reviews are fine at that length, it's just you claim to have enjoyed the new eps yet I've seen like twenty 1/5s and 2/5s and like one 4/5....

Oh, well, on the unimportant place where I wrote these things, I'd previously reviewed all of the first 4 seasons of episodes. I scored all of those as 3s, 4s, and 5s. But Futurama was my favourite show, so if I was doing it relative to other things, I might have given them all 5s. That would've been silly. So 3 is a slightly below average S1-4 episode, and I do believe most of season 6 did not reach that standard. A 2 means I enjoyed it on some level, even though I wasn't impressed. It's all relative. And it's difficult to score them because I feel it's almost a different show now, with generally lower standards, so an episode can be quite successful relative to the rest of the season and I still don't want to give it a 4 and suggest it's somehow on par with something like Obsoletely Fabulous or The Farnsworth Parabox, which I gave 4s to. Just... ignore the scores, jesus.  laff

@Gorky: Sure. In I Dated a Robot, on reflection, "Don't date robots! Brought to you by the Space Pope" is probably the extent to which they tackled the "issue". But that's the extent I'm interested in. I can see what you mean by it being mean-spirited, but it's the uninspired part that bothers me. The horny preacher jokes have been done before. Yeah, totally. You don't need a show set in the year 3000 for that.

Sadly, it seems Groening went exactly for what some people want...

Annoyingly looking up satire in the dictionary time!

"the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues."

I don't think good satire needs to be fair and balanced like you say. That's journalism. Proposition Infinity is a weak satire IMO not because it's one-sided but because it's kinda lazy.
Gorky

Space Pope
****
« Reply #704 on: 03-05-2012 22:25 »

Annoyingly looking up satire in the dictionary time!

"the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues."

I don't think good satire needs to be fair and balanced like you say. That's journalism. Proposition Infinity is a weak satire IMO not because it's one-sided but because it's kinda lazy.

Ah, fair enough. I guess my expectation of satire is that it should show that everyone--not just those with whom the writers disagree--is stupid.

Also, I'd say that the one-sidedness contributes to the episode's sense of laziness. If the writers had wanted to thoroughly explore (or otherwise do full justice to) the gay marriage issue, they wouldn't have just picked one side of the debate and stuck with it--they would have exposed the pros and cons of both sides, while still subtly suggesting that those who support gay rights are making the better decision.

And, if they had managed to produce an episode that socially-conscious and intellectually-stimulating, then maybe I would have been okay with them sacrificing Kif and Amy's relationship for such a thing. But they didn't, and I'm not--and, with that, I shall officially shut up about "Proposition Infinity" already. [Nibbler]No one believed Gorky, or cared what she had to say.[/Nibbler]
Inquisitor Hein
Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #705 on: 03-05-2012 22:53 »

Sadly, it seems Groening went exactly for what some people want...

Annoyingly looking up satire in the dictionary time!


And your point is?
Groening went for a one-sided representation,  and your post ("The other side is not worth looking at") showed that he gave certain people just what they wanted...
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #706 on: 03-05-2012 23:43 »

My point was that satire is by definition one-sided, and the other side is necessarily deemed by the writer to be stupid (or ridiculous or silly or whatever). So Groening (Rowe, actually) ridiculed one side. That's how satire works. I'm very one-minded on this particular issue, sure. I don't see Futurama trying to unsarcastically represent the arguments against gay marriage. I don't see how it would work or how it would be funny.

Anyway, this is becoming uncomfortably like an argument, and a political one at that. That's the last thing I want! All I ever tried to say was that I don't think Futurama needed to tackle gay marriage at all! This is going in a bad direction! I blame Gorky for agreeing with something I wrote. Everything was fine while nobody was agreeing with me!
Fnord
Starship Captain
****
« Reply #707 on: 03-06-2012 07:22 »

Why am I seeing so many awful comments about good episodes and positive comments about pretty lame eps? This thread is awful!

Take off your aluminum hat and hear the ultrasonic waves!
koldstare64
Delivery Boy
**
« Reply #708 on: 03-06-2012 07:55 »

You know, GreyThinkyWhale's ratings got me thinking... He can't be the only one that generally felt that way about the quality of the newer episodes. Maybe this just means that, while not perfect, the first season since the show's return was meant to appeal to the same different types of audiences that watched the original run. You have your satire-of-modern-day-issues episodes, your extremely-futuristic-themed episodes, and your moderately-funny-slash-emotional episodes. Each one of these (and other types) appeals to a different audience, who would then in turn rate them differently.

Personally, I quite enjoyed TMAR and LI much more than GreyThinkyWhale, but I completely understand why those episodes were rated how they were; I (and from the looks of it, a lot of other people) just don't value the same qualities in an episode as much.

(Although, I never understood why people dislike Attack of the Killer App. Discuss?)
UnrealLegend

Space Pope
****
« Reply #709 on: 03-06-2012 08:05 »

(Although, I never understood why people dislike Attack of the Killer App. Discuss?)

It has really, really poor pop culture references. It's the only instance of the show that I can think of where a pop culture reference has actually seriously hurt the quality.

It's a real shame as well, because the first half of the episode is excellent.
Tofu_Lion

Starship Captain
****
« Reply #710 on: 03-06-2012 08:52 »
« Last Edit on: 03-06-2012 08:54 »

I like that episode despite the Boyle. Mom is at her best (as always), the devious old hag...you've got the information mosquito, the unveiling of the Twit Worm ("Send."), an awesome ending ("Dumb bastards!") and Fry asking if he can charge the fee to his card ("Hell yes!"). Fry and Bender's contest was entertaining enough,"So much for a pleasant swim in vomit" still makes me chuckle. I know every episode has its funny parts, but this one was really funny to me and I didn't mind its faults much.
Tedward

Professor
*
« Reply #711 on: 03-06-2012 15:38 »

Anyway, this is becoming uncomfortably like an argument, and a political one at that. That's the last thing I want! All I ever tried to say was that I don't think Futurama needed to tackle gay marriage at all! This is going in a bad direction! I blame Gorky for agreeing with something I wrote. Everything was fine while nobody was agreeing with me!

To paraphrase Clone High:
"My discomfort with a human kissing a robot is weaker than my hatred of people who argue about it."
"Hey, let's all accept GreyThinkyWhale and shun Gorky instead!"
DannyJC13

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #712 on: 03-06-2012 17:36 »

To paraphrase Clone High:
"My discomfort with a human kissing a robot is weaker than my hatred of people who argue about it."
"Hey, let's all accept GreyThinkyWhale and shun Gorky instead!"

Ahem!
GreyThinkyWhale

Professor
*
« Reply #713 on: 03-06-2012 18:02 »

You know, GreyThinkyWhale's ratings got me thinking... He can't be the only one that generally felt that way about the quality of the newer episodes. Maybe this just means that, while not perfect, the first season since the show's return was meant to appeal to the same different types of audiences that watched the original run. You have your satire-of-modern-day-issues episodes, your extremely-futuristic-themed episodes, and your moderately-funny-slash-emotional episodes. Each one of these (and other types) appeals to a different audience, who would then in turn rate them differently.

Personally, I quite enjoyed TMAR and LI much more than GreyThinkyWhale, but I completely understand why those episodes were rated how they were; I (and from the looks of it, a lot of other people) just don't value the same qualities in an episode as much.

Oh sure. I described some of my top episodes of the new season as being "out-there" and "crazy" or "ambitious". Those are the qualities that appeal to me most of all, and of course, I dig the sort of emotional episodes.

My biggest issue with the show's return, to me, and this was obvious from the beginning of Bender's Big Score, is the humour I just tend to find cringeworthy a lot of the time. (A couple random examples from BBS: holding the french horn instead of the steering wheel, professor's "thug life" tattoo; ughhhhh). But then as the movie went on, it started to have a super ambitious plot, and the humour ceased to be bad because it came out of the craziness of the plot and didn't feel forced. And Bender's Big Score is now actually one of my favourite things from all of Futurama.

So a lot of the episodes now I feel are kind of like just the crappy parts at the start of Bender's Big Score. While others capture a little bit of what made BBS work. But even the less-ambitious or all-comedy episodes from the original run didn't feel this forced, I don't think. When they made bad jokes it was kind of endearing. Now it's nearly Family-Guy-bad. Obviously people here like that show (I used to like it a lot, years ago), but could they maybe see how Futurama might have moved in that direction? In terms of having humour that doesn't come out of the plot, and that often relies on contemporary pop culture references? Maybe? A little bit? Is this a valid argument at all? Or at least a valid description of why I'm not so fond of the new episodes?

I like that episode despite the Boyle. Mom is at her best (as always), the devious old hag...you've got the information mosquito, the unveiling of the Twit Worm ("Send."), an awesome ending ("Dumb bastards!") and Fry asking if he can charge the fee to his card ("Hell yes!"). Fry and Bender's contest was entertaining enough,"So much for a pleasant swim in vomit" still makes me chuckle. I know every episode has its funny parts, but this one was really funny to me and I didn't mind its faults much.

I DID like the information mosquito.  tongue

To paraphrase Clone High:
"My discomfort with a human kissing a robot is weaker than my hatred of people who argue about it."
"Hey, let's all accept GreyThinkyWhale and shun Gorky instead!"

Heh, I haven't watched Clone High in like forever.

P.S. I probably liked Gorky's responses here most of all. Just in case... anyone thought... oh nevermind.
Tedward

Professor
*
« Reply #714 on: 03-06-2012 18:11 »


What, is that for everyone else's benefit? Today, the theme of of the awareness thread is...awareness (of Clone High).
DotheBartman

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #715 on: 03-06-2012 21:33 »

A good satirist should be able to look at both sides, and -even when he decides to let one side "win" at the end- should also be able to find good and flawed reasons on both sides.

This isn't really true. A lot of the best works of satire are completely one-sided. Dr. Strangelove wouldn't have been better with pro-nukes messages thrown in.
Gorky

Space Pope
****
« Reply #716 on: 03-07-2012 02:20 »
« Last Edit on: 03-07-2012 02:22 »

My biggest issue with the show's return, to me, and this was obvious from the beginning of Bender's Big Score, is the humour I just tend to find cringeworthy a lot of the time. (A couple random examples from BBS: holding the french horn instead of the steering wheel, professor's "thug life" tattoo; ughhhhh). But then as the movie went on, it started to have a super ambitious plot, and the humour ceased to be bad because it came out of the craziness of the plot and didn't feel forced. And Bender's Big Score is now actually one of my favourite things from all of Futurama.

So a lot of the episodes now I feel are kind of like just the crappy parts at the start of Bender's Big Score. While others capture a little bit of what made BBS work. But even the less-ambitious or all-comedy episodes from the original run didn't feel this forced, I don't think. When they made bad jokes it was kind of endearing. Now it's nearly Family-Guy-bad. Obviously people here like that show (I used to like it a lot, years ago), but could they maybe see how Futurama might have moved in that direction? In terms of having humour that doesn't come out of the plot, and that often relies on contemporary pop culture references? Maybe? A little bit? Is this a valid argument at all? Or at least a valid description of why I'm not so fond of the new episodes?

I think that's definitely valid. The original run just has a certain feel to it--whether that perception is born of the show's objective quality or my own nostalgic bias is open for debate--and, with a few exceptions, the new run has failed to captivate me in that same way. (For the record, these exceptions include: "Into the Wild Green Yonder," "Lethal Inspection," "The Late Philip J. Fry," "The Prisoner of Benda," "Cold Warriors," and "Reincarnation.")

That doesn't mean I hate Futurama now, or that I'm sorry they brought it back. I think the differences between the new and old run are largely the result of the pop cultural landscape having changed so much between 1999 and 2012; the writers can't help being affected by these changes--even though I sometimes wish they would rise above the forced pop culture references and the self-consciously lowbrow humor the average viewer now seems to expect.

I like that episode despite the Boyle. Mom is at her best (as always), the devious old hag...you've got the information mosquito, the unveiling of the Twit Worm ("Send."), an awesome ending ("Dumb bastards!") and Fry asking if he can charge the fee to his card ("Hell yes!"). Fry and Bender's contest was entertaining enough,"So much for a pleasant swim in vomit" still makes me chuckle. I know every episode has its funny parts, but this one was really funny to me and I didn't mind its faults much.

I agree with all of this, and will add that I really enjoy Fry and Leela's conflict in this episode. It's the one of the few instances in the series, post-"Parasites Lost," where Fry does something stupid and Leela doesn't guilt and/or nag him into apologizing. He genuinely feels sorry for what he's done, and Leela forgives him even before he makes amends--but he still does this endearing, Fry-ish thing and takes a dive into a pool of goat excrement. I find that gesture strangely touching. "Attack of the Killer App" is an episode that deals with the Fry and Leela relationship without being blatantly shippy, which is kind of refreshing.
Tofu_Lion

Starship Captain
****
« Reply #717 on: 03-07-2012 06:45 »

Yeah that part was sweet, I like when Susan tells Leela to "Plug your nose and give it a go!"
Inquisitor Hein
Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #718 on: 03-07-2012 09:48 »

A good satirist should be able to look at both sides, and -even when he decides to let one side "win" at the end- should also be able to find good and flawed reasons on both sides.

This isn't really true. A lot of the best works of satire are completely one-sided. Dr. Strangelove wouldn't have been better with pro-nukes messages thrown in.

Well..Dr. Strangelove doesn't feature "Nuke Supporters" and "Nuke Opponents" as rivaling groups. The groups featured were "America" and "Soviet Union", and the "Lashing out at both directions" was achieved by showing both to be too dump to use these weapons in the planned fashion by building up a threat scenario without actually using them.

The major players in Strangelove were America and Russia, and both got quite their share in that movie wink
Svip

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #719 on: 03-07-2012 09:58 »

Russia got their share in the film?  It's basically only their ambassador.  The whole film is about an American nutjob going crazy on a base and decides to instruct all the nuclear bombers to bomb the USSR.

It then becomes a race against time to get to that base to get them to call the bombers back.  But one plane is not obtained because of faulty communications and manages to succeed its run by dumping a bomb on its nearest available target.  At which point, the USSR's 'doomsday device' goes off and everybody dies.

The whole thing about being unable to disarm the doomsday device makes sense from a MAD doctrine synopsis.  Unfortunately, the Russians hadn't planned on announcing it for a couple of days.  But how can the American government be blamed for a general going crazy and attacking the USSR on his own?

I am not saying there wasn't social commentary and satire based on nuclear weapons; of course there was.  But it showed far more the Americans been stupid than the Russians.
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