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Why is the ‘Futurama’s reboot sparking more outrage than applause?

Are we ready to blast off into the cosmos of laughter with the reboot of our favorite animated sci-fi comedy, Futurama? Thanks to Hulu, the world is once again being treated to the extraterrestrial exploits and comedy of this beloved show, as we await the premiere of the show’s first fresh episodes in over ten years.

Our much-loved crew from Planet Express is back for the reboot, with Bender serving his usual dose of sharp, comedic chaos – from impromptu disintegrations to donkey burrows crafted out of locked rooms, the trailer doesn’t skimp on silliness. But there’s also a flavor of humor that feels, well, a little frostbitten, like they’ve been stored in the deep freeze and are just now being thawed.

The return

A joke about an unruly section of space dubbed ‘Crypto Country’, a wave of pandemic-related humor, and nasal swab tests are sprinkled throughout, making us wonder if Futurama is feeling the effects of a decade-long hiatus. But let’s face it, the true charm of this series doesn’t exactly shine in a two-minute trailer. We’ll have to hold our breath until July 26th when the show officially lands on Hulu.

Sure, Bender (John DiMaggio), the show’s endearingly obnoxious robot, initially had us sweating bullets over pay negotiations, but the complete original voice cast is back and ready to rocket us into comedic bliss. They’re back with their distinct voice talents that give life to our favorite characters – from the iconic Fry (Billy West) to the fierce and independent Leela (Katey Sagal).

The show’s revival was first announced in February 2022, nearly a decade after its original run ended. We’re getting 20 episodes in all, though only the first 10 will comprise season 11. In true suspense-building fashion, they’re releasing one episode at a time, starting from the premiere date.

The drama

While we’re psyched for the reboot of Futurama, there was quite a stir behind the scenes. John DiMaggio, the voice of Bender, was notably absent from the initial cast announcement due to unresolved pay negotiations. The robot’s soulful voice actor was not just concerned about his own paycheck, but those of his fellow Futurama crew as well.

DiMaggio emphasized that he was advocating for fair compensation across the board, citing the entertainment industry’s tendency to exploit artists’ time and talent. He confirmed that he’s fighting for both his colleagues and self-respect, sparking what fans referred to as “#Bendergate.”

The countdown

Guess what? Like its time-traveling protagonist Fry, Futurama can’t seem to stay in the past for long. With the confirmation of DiMaggio’s return to the reboot, “#Bendergate” has come to a close. Despite initial apprehensions, he is all set to return as our much-loved, sassy robot, Bender.

DiMaggio announced his return with a humor-filled statement, reminiscent of Bender’s signature style. He expressed no mention of the initial pay dispute or how it was resolved. However, his return signals a triumph for both the actor and fans, who eagerly await the new episodes slated for release on Hulu in 2023.

With all the excitement and controversy surrounding the Futurama revival, the real question remains: Is the world ready for a taste of humor that’s out of this world, or will it find the show’s antics have lost their gravity?


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