Futurama was an adult, somewhat bizarre, animated FOX comedy about the misadventures of Philip Fry and company. On New Year’s Eve 1999, Fry delivered a pizza to a cryogenic lab. After finding the order was a prank, he falls into an open cryo-chamber and was frozen for 1000 years. When he wakes up the world is a much different place. As he gets his bearings, Fry befriends Bender the robot, Leela the one-eyed alien and finds a distant relative Professor Farnsworth who owns an inter-planetary delivery company: Planet Express.
Futurama aired four seasons over five years on FOX; however, just like the Family Guy series, it’s gained new popularity on the Cartoon Network and through DVD sales. Family Guy was eventually brought back to network TV; however, new Futurama adventures can only be had first on DVDs and later on Comedy Central. Bender’s Game is the third of four direct-to-DVD movies.
This time out Bender is sent to the HAL Institute for Criminally Insane Robots to cure him of his medieval fantasies. This is because he becomes addicted to Dungeons and Dragons once he learns how to access his imagination and becomes trapped in a fantasy world. In the meantime, Fry and the rest of the Planet Express crew deals must deal with the rising cost of dark matter fuel. Mom once again is the villain of the story; this time Mom is the sole provider of the energy and is taking in record profits by raising costs under the appearance of a dark matter shortage. When Professor Farnsworth realizes that he has an item in his possession that will undo the power of the dark matter, Planet Express go to stop Mom's monopoly, but mistakenly strengthens the power of the dark matter and this turns Bender's imaginary medieval world into an alternate universe.
When I saw the preview for Bender’s Game on The Beast With A Billion Backs, I thought that it looked the best of the movies so far. Unfortunately the movie takes too long to get into the fantasy world and some of the gags and spoofs have been done to death so it loses its punch. Futurama has one last scheduled direct-to-DVD to be released in 2009, I hope it can regain the fun of Bender’s Big Score, or there may not be any more adventures after that!