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Author Topic: General Futurama Discussion - A New Thread  (Read 9630 times)
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Otis P Jivefunk

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« Reply #80 on: 08-16-2017 00:25 »

The original 72 are of a better average quality. Sure the best newer eps are better than the worst original eps and it's nice to have them in HD, but most of the newer eps have something to distract me.
winna

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« Reply #81 on: 08-16-2017 02:16 »

I'd say some of the best post movie episodes are better than the best original 72.  However, I would agree with your sentiments about average quality Otis.
Gorky

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« Reply #82 on: 08-16-2017 04:26 »

Sure the best newer eps are better than the worst original eps

I am almost 100% certain this is just nostalgia working its dirty magic on me--and, to be sure, there are between five and ten episodes* from the new run that I would include among my best-ever list--but even the episodes from the original run that I absolutely hated back when we only had those 72 episodes (I'm lookin' at you, "Where the Buggalo Roam") I would probably sooner watch than the Greatest Hits of seasons six and seven. They just give me the warm 'n' fuzzies in a way the following 56-ish episodes do not.

Really, the only thing I think the new run got better than the old run was a sense of emotional consistency in Fry and Leela's relationship, but even that was lacking from both 6A and 6B and really only kicked in in a satisfying way come season seven. Overall the new run (beginning with the movies, really) was an exercise in wasted potential and unfulfilled promises. I'm thinking specifically about the reveal of the Nibblonians' role in Fry's freezing (and Fry's Chosen One status), but there's also the whole Farnsworth/Mom relationship (and Igner's parentage) and the mutants' integration into society on the surface--things that the new run introduced/expanded upon but never really ran with in a satisfactory way. The first four seasons make it seem like there's a lot to this universe, but the new run episodes do not satisfyingly execute all that set-up.

Yes, the new run does do some interesting work at broadening our understanding of Fry's life in the twentieth century and his relationship with his parents--but "Cold Warriors" and "Game of Tones," for as enjoyable as they (particularly the former) are, are formulaic and derivative of earlier flashback episodes. We also get to see unexpected members of the Planet Express crew hanging out in the new run, but I would take a part three in the Brain Spawn saga or a follow-up on "Mother's Day" over watching, like, Cubert and Zoidberg pal around for half an episode. And, yes, the new run is riskier (or at least more risque) in terms of content--but I would have rather seen it take big emotional and psychological risks, like we see in "The Sting" or even something more low-key like "X-Mas Story."

Speaking of which: I love Leela's line in "Meanwhile" about never feeling lonely with just Fry in her life; it suggests that abandonment and loneliness and "other"-ness were in fact one of the series' underlying themes (we see it as early as that moment between Fry and Leela in Old New York in the pilot, and it comes up again sporadically throughout the original run with episodes like "X-Mas Story" and "The Luck of the Fryrish" and "The Cyber House Rules" and "Leela's Homeworld")...but that never really felt like an emotional through-line because the show kind of neglected those themes in the new run. Instead, we got a handful of genuinely good episodes and a bunch of annoying retreads (don't get me started on how many time traveling/bending episodes there are in seasons six and seven) and tons of mediocre filler episodes, and I think I would probably trade even the good episodes for a more or less brilliant 71 episodes and one ambiguous but absolutely beautiful series finale.

...Whew. I did not expect to get carried away, there. Apologies for the largely pointless rant, friends!

*Off the top of my head: "Lethal Inspection," "The Late Philip J. Fry," "The Prisoner of Benda," "Reincarnation," "Decision: 3012," and "31st Century Fox" (a wildcard, I know, but it's just good, clean fun)...and, if I'm feeling more generous, "A Farewell to Arms" and "Fry and Leela's Big Fling" and "Murder on the Planet Express" could also go on the list (and Into the Wild Green Yonder, for sure, if we're counting the movies).
winna

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« Reply #83 on: 08-16-2017 04:34 »

No need to apologize.  I think you put well into words thoughts which we've all had.  I'm okay with what we were given.
Tachyon

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« Reply #84 on: 08-17-2017 09:29 »


That's great insight into your thinking on the subject, Gorks.  Thanks for sharing smile

For me, I see the series as a single entity.  Different sections have their pluses and minuses, but I take the whole thing in and enjoy it all.

UnrealLegend

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« Reply #85 on: 08-18-2017 10:46 »

The original 72 are of a better average quality. Sure the best newer eps are better than the worst original eps and it's nice to have them in HD, but most of the newer eps have something to distract me.

This is basically my opinion as well. That said, the very best episodes of the Comedy Central run (The Late Philip J. Fry, for instance) are easily on par with the classics. I think those high points definitely made the renewal worth it even if the average quality dipped.
winna

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« Reply #86 on: 08-18-2017 18:48 »

I especially like what Gorky had to say about the Fry and Leela relationship, which I felt after the movies was handled fairly maturely.  I couldn't recall that happening in a show, and it felt like they could keep going without the sexual tension as a driving factor.  Some of the animation in the NEW* run was also tasty.  All in all, I didn't have high expectations, so I was definitely pleased with what was given.  I don't remember any of the episodes anymore, but I liked the eyephone episode, except for the susan boil part.... I wish that never happened.  The goat was really neat.  I need to find that puke smiley where the one pukes and the other eats it.  Even though my life is over, that smiley would actually make my life much better. It would complete me is what I mean.  It's what I've been searching for for 9 decades, it's necessary really.  That smiley where the one pukes and the other eats it.
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« Reply #87 on: 08-19-2017 00:20 »

The episodes that hold up for me from the CC run are the ones that are just funny, not emotional. Prisoner of Benda, Murder on the Planet Express, Law and Oracle, Reincarnation, ones like that. Like Gorky, I'm willing to accept that this is nostalgia talking, but the emotional episodes just don't feel genuine to me. Like, we need to give Fry closure with his entire family, that's real important. We need to know why the Professor hired Zoidberg. It's a trope of sequels in movies where they feel the need to explain everything you just accepted before.
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« Reply #88 on: 08-19-2017 00:29 »


Yeah, I hear you with respect to the Zoidberg episode.  Though I'm a little surprised that The Late Philip J Fry didn't work for you.  Personally, Leela's Homeworld hit me extremely hard in the feels, partly do to the fact that I was given up for adoption as an infant.  But Game of Tones slayed me just as hard -- it was waterworks (and I found and met my birth mom in 2001, long before either ep).

Maybe I like some of the later emotional-focused episodes simply because I'm a really emotional person?  I readily admit that I am the last person to dive deep into the structure of an ep and analyse it.

UnrealLegend

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« Reply #89 on: 08-19-2017 03:40 »

We need to know why the Professor hired Zoidberg.

Yeah, this one fell flat for me. It wasn't a particularly horrible episode by any means but it was very forgettable.

Also, the reasons you mentioned are basically the reason I really liked "Assie Come Home", because it felt like incredibly bizzare satire that was poking fun at the episodes that try to force a touching ending. The episodes from the original 72 that are "emotional" mostly work because they're few and far between. There's... Luck of the Fryrish, Jurassic Bark, Leela's Homeworld and Devil's Hands. Maybe a couple of others? Anyway, the infrequency made them feel more special, and also didn't hold them back from being hilarious.

That said, I think "Game of Tones" and "Lethal Inspection" are funny enough on their own to hold up even if you took away the endings.
winna

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« Reply #90 on: 08-19-2017 06:56 »

How do yall know the names of the episodes after the movies?

What do you think will happen in the year 252,525?  If man is still alive, I mean.
Tachyon

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« Reply #91 on: 08-19-2017 07:06 »


There's... Luck of the Fryrish, Jurassic Bark, Leela's Homeworld and Devil's Hands. Maybe a couple of others?


The Sting!
And maybe Parasites Lost.

winna

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« Reply #92 on: 08-19-2017 07:17 »

I may have missed Parasites Lost on its original airing, probably watched it first as an rm or a divx.  Luck of the Fryish was the first episode I missed on air.  It was definitely one of my favorites; perhaps the wait, and watching it multiple times on a computer made it that way.  It was also one of the first and best examples of the flashback being driven concurrently with the story I've ever seen. 
Gorky

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« Reply #93 on: 08-21-2017 22:48 »


There's... Luck of the Fryrish, Jurassic Bark, Leela's Homeworld and Devil's Hands. Maybe a couple of others?


The Sting!
And maybe Parasites Lost.



And let's not forget "Time Keeps on Slippin'!"


That said, I think "Game of Tones" and "Lethal Inspection" are funny enough on their own to hold up even if you took away the endings.

I agree on "Lethal Inspection," which is one of the more eminently quotable episodes of the new run. I find myself saying "That's the opposite of what I want!" a la Bender quite often. Oh, and "I think yes," a la the random Hispanic dude informing Bender that they're a stone's throw away from the outskirts of Tijuana.
winna

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« Reply #94 on: 08-21-2017 22:50 »

Isn't the new run like a decade ago? confused
Tachyon

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« Reply #95 on: 08-22-2017 03:41 »


Thanks, winna, I didn't feel old enough already tongue

Earlier today I had one of the most profound experiences of my life, watching the sun slowly shrink and finally wink out altogether.  I took off my eclipse glasses and watched the Sun's corona and the outline of the Moon with binoculars for a (very brief!) two minutes.

At the time, I was wearing my Planet Express t-shirt and was disappointed that no one seemed to notice.  A couple of hours ago I was walking from my hotel to a pub, briskly strolling along and passed the front of a closed school where a young girl was up on top of a low-ish brick wall. pretending to be balancing on a tightrope.  For some reason she seemed to glare at me as I walked by, and I was surprised and a bit taken aback but pretended not to notice.

Just after I passed her, she shouted out "I like your shirt!" smile  She looked about 10, but was probably older because she was wearing a black headscarf.

winna

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« Reply #96 on: 08-26-2017 06:46 »

I know a few stars a bit older.
Freako

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« Reply #97 on: 10-02-2017 08:38 »

I finally watched every episode of Futurama.

I saw the final season the same way I got into Futurama to begin with, way after it was cancelled.
The final season I legitimately enjoyed and it really felt like the show had never left.

I can't say the same for the first new season, with that internet iphone twitter crap.
But after that was over, they actually made some original, good, solid episodes.

I can close that chapter of my life now.
winna

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« Reply #98 on: 10-02-2017 20:47 »

I liked season 5. I don't remember any of it, but I liked it.

There's a 23% chance Futrama will return in 19 months.  On this timeline I mean.
UnrealLegend

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« Reply #99 on: 10-03-2017 08:46 »

Good to hear that you enjoyed it, Freako! I should rewatch S7 at some point; it's been so long that I barely remember most of it.
Scrappylive

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« Reply #100 on: 10-03-2017 09:32 »

I felt like the series struggled some in 7A and a lot in 6A, but 6B was really good and 7B was for the most part fantastic. It was sad to see it cancelled after it really seemed to hit its stride, but at least the series went out on a high note.
Freako

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« Reply #101 on: 10-04-2017 10:55 »

Good to hear that you enjoyed it, Freako! I should rewatch S7 at some point; it's been so long that I barely remember most of it.
Also I now finally know what the fuck your Avatar is.
I saw Bojack too.
canned eggs

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« Reply #102 on: 10-05-2017 23:29 »

Well, just talked on the phone to a friend of mine from rehab, and he said, "oh yeah; I've done coke with John DiMaggio."  Small world.
winna

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« Reply #103 on: 10-06-2017 09:03 »

Awesome! big grin
DannyJC13

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« Reply #104 on: 10-06-2017 16:04 »

In a perfect world, John would stumble across canned eggs' post whilst casually checking out the forum.
Gorky

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« Reply #105 on: 10-06-2017 16:17 »

And, uh, snort with delight.
Tachyon

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« Reply #106 on: 10-06-2017 16:47 »
« Last Edit on: 10-06-2017 20:17 »

lol tongue OK, that's it. I'm no longer going to hold back when my inner Tachy tells me "Oh, dear Lord, no." smile

[edit]

I'm a failure. I held back frown

canned eggs

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« Reply #107 on: 10-06-2017 19:00 »

I've never done coke with John DiMaggio, but I did do bourbon shots with him at the after party at the premiere of the first movie.  At least, I think I did.  There's a lot I'm not sure about when it comes to my drinking days.
DannyJC13

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« Reply #108 on: 10-06-2017 19:05 »

I'm starting to think that maybe YOU are John DiMaggio. shifty
winna

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« Reply #109 on: 10-06-2017 19:18 »

Awesome, either way.  Hopefully we'll get an opportunity to insufflate things with either Bender, canned eggs, or canned eggs' friend that calls to let canned eggs know what he did last week with John Dimaggio.  All of these scenarios seem pretty worthwhile to me.
canned eggs

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« Reply #110 on: 10-07-2017 01:28 »

It wasn't last week; it was years ago and someplace in Europe.
winna

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« Reply #111 on: 10-07-2017 02:16 »

Last week and years ago and someplace in Europe are practically the same time to me!  I appreciate your stringent standards to precise, accurate details though.

I don't know if you, or your friend, or Bender are into those sorts of things anymore.  I wouldn't want to peer pressure Bender into drugs, and I'm a bit weird.  My go to turned out to be cough syrup, with dextromethorphan in it.  I do it pretty rarely now though, and I completely stopped drinking alcohol...I don't even know why, honestly.  You seem pretty cool though, canned eggs, and I think you'd be great fun to hang out with, chems or otherwise.
canned eggs

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« Reply #112 on: 10-07-2017 16:48 »

Well, my principal vice was that I spent about 5 years drinking a bottle of whiskey a day, until my doctor told me I'd be dead by 40.  I've had a couple of relapses since I quit, but I tell myself every day "why would I want to go back to that?" 

I've probably also misused prescription dilaudid, but never tried to get it illegitimately because I knew that would be going down a rabbit hole I'd never come out of.

Anyway, my friend is clean & sober and so am I.  I can't speak for John DiMaggio.

Now this is suddenly the substance abuse thread.
winna

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« Reply #113 on: 10-07-2017 17:48 »

The key part of the word abuse is the word use!

I hear you on that stuff, and I'm glad you're doing better.  Let your food be your medicine and let your medicine be your food, and may we be modest in all things.

I'm also glad to hear about your friend, as well, and I apologize if any of my comments have opened up a chapter you've since passed.

My true vice has been cigarettes actually.  I'll have to put them down one day, but that day is not right now.  I don't think anything else has a hold on me.  The rest I've put down without even a thought.  There is one thing I receive, but I never ask for.  I don't need to go into details on all things.

That said, I just enjoyed reading your story.  I like stories about life.  You seem to have good life stories, canned eggs.  I think that's healthy and good, even if some of the stories are not modest, or are amoral in some way.  Thank you for sharing, and I hope your health is in much better condition.  smile
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« Reply #114 on: 11-01-2017 16:00 »

Just started watching through the series for the first time in ages and I immediately remember why I love it. It's like a warm hug or an old, incredibly reassuring friend.

I finally made it to the new episodes in my Futurama watch-through (it took me ages because of uni) and I've found watching the newer episodes (mostly I'm referring to season 6 and 7 rather than the movies) to be quite strange in a way that I will try to explain right this very second.

Looking back on the newer episodes as a whole rather than seeing a new episode and then reading reviews talking about how it's the new worst episode ever makes it easier to acknowledge the lack of something that was there in the original run rather than having a kneejerk reaction of "well it wasn't that bad, jeez" to dramatic reviews declaring the death of the show.

There's so much about the look and feel of the original run that makes it feel warm and familiar and safe. When the new episodes start the show looks and sounds different so even just on a superficial level it feels different and doesn't have as much nostalgia attached to it as the original run, but the fact that the new episodes are actually starting to get old enough that they remind me of times I have mild nostaliga for means I can look back at a lot of the episodes and be like "yeah this is kinda dumb for these reasons" rather than dismissing it as a lack of nostalgia.

On the other hand, I've noticed that a lot of the episodes (especially season 7) are actually quite enjoyable in a different way to the older, most nostalgia-ridden episodes. I feel like there are a lot of newer episodes that actually have cool little stories and the main thing that makes them feel different or "off" is little things like jokes that don't really feel right and the generally different look of the show post-cancellation.

I feel like one thing I've definitely noticed this time around is the lack of a live orchestra which makes some music cues feel wackier than they probably would have been in the original run. Not to go on about it but it does kinda feel like the orchestra really added to the tone of the show in a way you don't realise until it's gone.

I'm really tired so this probably makes no sense. Basically the main point of my post is that I'm re-watching season 6 and 7 of Futurama and actually finding it quite enjoyable as a TV show even though I'm also noticing more of the ways it's not as good as re-watching the first four seasons. Or something. It's probably all nonsense. Like I said, very very tired right now.
Gorky

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« Reply #115 on: 11-01-2017 18:24 »

There's so much about the look and feel of the original run that makes it feel warm and familiar and safe. When the new episodes start the show looks and sounds different so even just on a superficial level it feels different and doesn't have as much nostalgia attached to it as the original run

This. I know it's "cool" or whatever that the movies and new run were in HD, and there have been plenty of interviews with DXC and Matt Groening where they've basically said this was a show that was always meant to be in HD--but I strongly, strongly disagree.

This is almost entirely my own silly, partly-nostalgia-fueled aesthetic preferences talking, but I liked the somewhat clunkier (maybe "thicker" would be a better word?) line-work and the darker color palette of the original run. Whether this look of the show was an actual artistic choice or just the result of technological limitations is irrelevant: old Futurama looked like Futurama to me, which is to say it looked different from other shows of the time (not just The Simpsons, but also pre-cancellation Family Guy and any number of other shows from the early 2000s). There was a visual sensibility I could point to and appreciate as unique to this particular show.

The new run felt sleeker and brighter, yes, but it also felt unpleasantly of a piece with every other animated show of the 2010s on a a visual level. The art style itself was obviously different from, say, Rick and Morty or whatever, but it had the same generic, "polished" feel. The old run was beautifully animated and its use of CG was ahead of its time and all that jazz, but it was also visually stunning in terms of coloration (who could forget the Emmy-award-winning corn from "A Bicyclops Built for Two"?); it had a distinct artistic sensibility, which I largely attribute to the color scheme and its relationship to the show's overall mood and tone--and which was missing from the new run, for me.

And I know I've mentioned this elsewhere, but the character acting in the new run was far less thoughtful and carefully-animated. With the old run, I can recall specific moments of acting from the characters, even particular facial expressions or small physical gestures, that still make me laugh. For example: in "Less Than Hero," when Fry offers his pants to the robber instead of just his wallet, Leela (hands still up) watches him in, like, attentive horror as he unzips his fly. It's a small moment, but it's a moment that makes me feel like these characters are real people reacting to the various stimuli in their environment, just like a live-action actor would.

Delicate, delightful touches like that are missing from the new run, and honestly their absence is just as conspicuous to me as the lack of a full orchestra (which also obviously had a huge impact). I understand these deficiencies in the animation and score were largely budgetary--I daresay the only aspect of the new run's quality that was completely in the production crew's hands was the writing, and obviously that was a mixed bag--but that doesn't mean I can't still gripe about them in assessing the new run. I think it's totally reasonable to say that the show felt different because it looked different, and certainly these disparities become more apparent when you watch seasons one to seven straight through.
Scrappylive

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« Reply #116 on: 11-01-2017 19:56 »

I daresay the only aspect of the new run's quality that was completely in the production crew's hands was the writing, and obviously that was a mixed bag

No, we fire them all the time. It saves money and it's fun.

I remember reading years ago that the writing staff suffered from budgetary restraints in the new run, as well. Whereas the old run, as with most shows, had a full staff of writers who would sit together in a writers' room and develop a story before assigning one of them to spend two weeks writing the script (and subsequently bringing it back to the writers' room for various edits), instead they could only hire just a few full-time writers for the writers' room. The other writers would be part-time or contractual -- they would take an assignment to write an episode but would not be a regular part of the writers' room. Obviously, having fewer people to brainstorm, collaborate, and edit is going to have a negative impact on the series, which is why I think the new run was a mixed bag.
winna

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« Reply #117 on: 11-01-2017 21:30 »

Definitely agree.  It went from a big production powerhouse, to a small husk of its former self.  I think it retained the spirit of the show in its turn over.

When it started though, I definitely got the money is no object vibe.  The first season of Futurama
 is better than a lot of other animated show's third season (normally when they hit stride) right out of the gate.

My favorite part though, was that the show could boast a doctorate level staff for the mundane, and that seeped into a 23% enjoyment felt when they got around to the commentaries.  I'd even go so far as to say that Futurama's creator commentaries should be the bar for all other commentaries.

Also, PEEL is changing formats because we need to become an R&S forum.  This is really a matter of survival.
Scrappylive

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« Reply #118 on: 11-02-2017 00:01 »

I'd even go so far as to say that Futurama's creator commentaries should be the bar for all other commentaries.

Agreed. After watching the Futurama commentaries, I've sat down to watch the commentaries of a few other shows, and I've always been let down.

Where's the entertainment?
Where's the information?
Where's the... Futurama?!?
Tachyon

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« Reply #119 on: 11-02-2017 00:23 »

A few years ago I ran through every episode, with the commentary track enabled. It's simply wonderful. My only disappointment was that Katey Segal didn't participate in any of them (to the best of my recollection).

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