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Good News, Everyone!!
Herc Finds Hilarious The New RINGS-Spoofing FUTURAMA MOVIE III: BENDER’S GAME!!

I am – Hercules!!
Futurama Movie III FAQ What’s it called? “Bender’s Game.” Who’s responsible? Teleplays for parts one and two are credited to Eric Horsted. Teleplay for part three is credited to Michael Rowe & Eric Kaplan. Teleplay for part four is credited to series creator David X. Cohen & Writers Guild of American president Patric M. Verrone. What says Fox Home Entertainment? “With fuel prices skyrocketing, the Planet Express crew sets off on a dangerous mission to infiltrate the world's only dark-matter mine, source of all spaceship fuel. But deep beneath the surface, they discover a far stranger place...a medieval land of dragons and sorcery and intoxicated knights who look suspiciously like Bender. “Joining the cast are guest stars George Takei, the iconic Captain Sulu from the original ‘Star Trek’ series, and comic impressionist Rich Little. The third installment of four all-new feature-length adventures, the Futurama: Bender's Game DVD and Blu-ray are packed with special features. Hosted by David X. Cohen, ‘Dungeons & Dragons & Futurama’ chronicles the influence of the classic role-playing fantasy game on the franchise. Other special features include outtakes, cast commentary, an anti-piracy message from Bender, an interactive Futurama Genetics Laboratory, a sneak peek at the next ‘Futurama’ epic, and much more!” Does Takei play himself again? He does. (In a ridiculously brief vocal appearance.) Does Little play Nixon? Nixon’s not in the movie, and Billy West always plays Nixon on “Futurama.” Little plays himself impersonating Howard Cosell. Why does Leela sport hooves? Halfway through the movie, the dark matter in Bender’s belly transforms everything into a “Rings”-ish fantasy version of everything. (The second half of the movie might borrow liberally from, among many other things, the Stephen King-Peter Straub novel “The Talisman.”) Leela becomes the arrow-happy Leegola. Fry becomes the Gollum-like Frydo. The big news? “Bender’s Game” is hilarious, and a mammoth improvement over “The Beast With A Billion Backs.” Not everything works, but you won’t find a lot of big-screen comedies that’ll make me laugh as hard or as often as this third “Futurama” movie. What else is Fox not telling us? Farnsworth pulls a Clockwork Orange on the violent Leela. Bender is saddened to learn he has no imagination. Which classic characters recur? Many, most prominently Mom, Nibbler, Leela’s sewer-mutant parents, and anchorman Morbo The Annihilator. What’s great? “The unmistakable stench of dwarf urine!” “Shame on you! Count me in!” “You couldn’t afford the LX package?” “My lone source of joy in the cold December of my days!” “Also, smell this milk.” “When will young people learn ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ won’t make you cool?” “Who needs girls?!” “Now, ‘Sex And The City’? That’s funny!” “Three, I think!” “Can I guess ‘Mom’ too?” “The wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the chickens!” “Hey, what are you doing down there?” “I’m not The Tunneling Horror! I hate that guy!” “I refuse to hurt another living thing!” The tale of Reginald Hopelessness. The name of the institute for criminally insane robots. The Morks! Farnsworth’s redundant exposition. The Bush of Many Uses. The fate of Treedledum. Visible coin-slots for Leela and Amy! What’s not so great? Visible coin-slots for Fry and Nibbler! How does it end, spoiler-boy? “Faster! Faster! Slower!” cries Farnsworth. What of the set’s many extas? * Commentary with actors Billy West (Fry, Farnsworth and Zoidberg), John DiMaggio (Bender), Tress MacNeille (Mom), series mastermind David X. Cohen, series writer Michael Rowe, producers Matt Groening and Claudia Katz and director Dwayne Carey-Hill. * “Storyboard Animatic: Bender’s Game Part One” (21:47) Slightly different dialogue and jokes attend this black and white sketch montage. * “Futurama Genetics Lab” Combine the DNA of any two characters, Brundlefly-style (or perhaps “If They Mated”-style), from the following menu: Fry, Leela, Fransworth, Bender, Zoidberg, Morbo and Hypnotoad! Combine Bender and the Hypnotoad and find out what “Botender” looks like! Combine Bender and Leela to see what the miniskirted “Blender” looks like. * “D&D&F (Dungeons & Dragons & Futurama)” (7:03) David X. Cohen exhibits the D7D map he used as a kid. Fellow writer Eric Kaplan greet Cohen wearing chain mail. Third writer Mike Rowe beats the exceedingly nerdy Cohen with a baseball bat. Cohen explains how the game influenced past episodes of the series. * “How To Draw Futurama in 83 Easy Steps” (7:52) Artists show how to draw Zoidberg, Leela and Bender. Learn that Bender’s head, torso and legs are all roughly equal in length. * “3D Models With Animator Discussion” (5:03) CGI demolition derby ships are rotated as people talk about them. Learn that the spacecraft that get destroyed have to be constructed from individually created pieces. * “Deleted Scene: Cup Or Nozzle?” (1:03) The D&D kids order dessert. * “Blooperama 2: Outtakes From Bender’s Game” (1:50) Live-action footage of the actors flubbing their lines in a recording studio. * “Bender’s Anti-Piracy Warning” (1:12) Bender, a notorious thief, proves an extrememly poor spokesbot for an anti-piracy spot. * “Futurama: Into The Wild Green Yonder: A Sneak Peek At The Next Futurama Epic” (1:13) Learn that Zapp Brannigan and Kif Kroker, absent from “Bender’s Game,” return for the fourth and final “Futurama” movie. Learn also that Tickle Me Bender is selling poorly and that Farnsworth gets naked in a glass cage full of airborne money.

Note please that “Bender’s Game” is available in both DVD and the increasingly popular Blu-ray.

Blu-Ray Players: $205.98!! (They Play DVDs Too!!) (Get Four Free WB Blu-Ray Discs With Purchase!!)

Three-For-Two Blu-Ray Sale!!

Readers Talkback
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  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:14 p.m. CST


    by raw_bean

    I liked Bender's Big Score quite a bit, but Beast with a Billion Backs was fairly poor by Futurama standards. Really hoping Bender's Game is a return to greatness though!

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:14 p.m. CST


    by TheAFLACDuck

    Glad to hear it rocks! ... who's Neela?

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:14 p.m. CST

    This site has been so wrong on the other movies

    by V'Shael

    giving good reviews for lamentable pieces of shit.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:14 p.m. CST

    A rings spoof, how timely

    by beetlegeuse

    Glad to hear its funny

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:15 p.m. CST

    As long as the Rust Monster at the vet is mentioned...

    by Squashua

    ...I'm golden.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:16 p.m. CST

    Saw it over the weekend...

    by Lenny Nero threatens some lameness during the final 30 minutes, but it's still extremely funny. Still, "Bender's Big Score" was incredible, and none of the other movies have come close.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:17 p.m. CST

    Also, FRIST (sic), and with a meaningful post.

    by raw_bean

    All the dopes who go to such great trouble to get first posts without even reading the article and then blurt their nonsense on the top of talkbacks, I laugh at you. I read and enjoyed the whole thing, and actually offered my opinion, and still got a coveted 'first'. If it had any kind of physical manifestation I'd throw it away just to reinforce my contempt for such nonsense.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:19 p.m. CST

    seen it

    by mr. flibble

    all over BT, thought it a bit dull actually. Starts off interesting and relevant enuf with the fuel issues but then it deteorates into a parody that may have been worth a watch a few years ago, and I mean may. Think it (like the previous "movies" suffers plotwise like the Office last season from being drawn out over several episodes. Futurama, like the Simpsons, often has a very random or obscure plot or plot change which in a shorter format can work well and keep things interesting but in the lo9nger format it just goes on a bit too long. There are funny moments (Morbos weight gain on the forehead) and i'd recommend it to any Futurama fan but I hope they get picked up for a full season and can get back to producing short and sweet episodes rather than these drawn out affairs...

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:22 p.m. CST

    By which I meant...

    by raw_bean

    ...if I had any kind of physical manifestation of the first post, not if I personally possessed a physical form. Obviously.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 5:27 p.m. CST

    Increasingly popular?

    by Don Lockwood

    Yeah, not if you listen to the pundits who say Blu-Ray is already dead.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 6:15 p.m. CST

    It's pretty great

    by infallible

    I got to see this last week as part of an early sneak preview screening at the amazing Alamo Drafthouse here in beautiful Austin, Texas. Herc's right, as usual, in that this is really funny, and well worth your valuable time. Takei's part is very small, but funny (though not really needing to be on the press sheet). I'll probably rent it just for the DVD extras.

  • It's pretty funny, but plays it ridiculously safe. It has none of the pathos or creativity of BBS or BwaBB. Basically, if BBS is tonally similar to episodes like "Roswell that Ends Well" (epic, emotional, plotty) and BwaBB is similar to episodes like "Godfellas" (dense, experimental, philosophical, but slightly off target) then Bender's Game is best compared to something like "A Leela of her own". That is to say, its pretty amusing, but has a pretty simple, trivial plot and leans a little heavily on broad parody (especially the LOTR bit at the end). It's not a disaster, actually its pretty fun and I'll definitely be buying it, but it just felt kind of slight to me considering the last two. Sort of like, "they get brought back for one more season and THIS is the story they felt deserved a full-length movie treatment?" Ah well. Hopefully they'll make a bundle on these and get to keep making more movies after the four are complete.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 6:27 p.m. CST

    What is "Futurama"?

    by Drunken Rage

    Wasn't that the name of some remarkably unfunny cartoon show that got canceled from a couple of networks? Yeah, that's what I thought.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 6:36 p.m. CST

    Drunken Rage?

    by shellfishh

    More like drunken fool. You are pitiful and pitied.<br><br> I've been less than impressed with the previous movies. Glad to have them around, but I don't like how they are handling the characters. Fry and Leela going backwards, Amy cheating on Kif (even if he was 'dead') LaBarbara, the way she acted toward Hermes in the first one. It just doesn't ring true to the characters.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 6:46 p.m. CST

    Yeah (hic), whatever raw_bean is talking about...

    by morGoth

    ...ha-ha...LAST! Oh, erm, yes...looking forward to this and especially Frydo. One question: What's the use of animation done for Blu-ray? WOn't it be the same line art with spiffy shading? Just curious and I don't care since I'll be watching this on my trusty DVD upconvert player. Namarie...

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 7:31 p.m. CST

    The best one yet

    by GeorgieBoy

    Finally, a Futurama movie that actually feels like one of the episodes!! Although, I still didn't get the alternate universe thing...

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 7:35 p.m. CST

    dire and unfunny

    by floatybrownthing

    The jokes weren't relevant anymore, in fact I think I laughed at more jokes in meet the spartans than I did with this effort. Yeah. That makes me genuinely sad to say that,but if this is the calibre of futurama in the future, then I think it's high time to put it to bed. either that, or take it out into the field one last time with your shotgun and put it to sleep permanently, because it was shockingly bad. <p> Seriously. Don't listen to herc, he's just giving yet another positive review so he can pick up some comission from his amazon sales.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 8:14 p.m. CST

    Not perfect, but pretty damned good

    by toshiro-solo

    And it has my favorite Futurama joke in any of the movies thus far - the bunny bit. You'll know it when you see it.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 8:40 p.m. CST

    its crap

    by vadakinX

    its been out here for a week already...I've seen it...its better than the last one but not by much...Futurama just isn't as funny as it was and not as clever either. It's also lost a lot of the heart from the series. <p> Frankly I haven't been impressed by any of these "movies" and after being oh so excited to see Futurama come back I'm beginning to wonder if it would have been better off dead and remembered as a great show instead of being remembered as a show that was great but then got worse as it went on.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 8:58 p.m. CST


    by Toonol

    Get Firefox. I'm always surprised when I find out people are still using a browser that shows ads.

  • Nov. 3, 2008, 11:32 p.m. CST

    eh i liked BwaBB better

    by Holodigm

    it's nice and funny and all, but spending over a half hour on the LotR spoof really threw me off. it was funny, but felt like 30 minutes of bad family guy filler.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 12:34 a.m. CST

    I'm curious of the cover is a reference to

    by Dingbatty

    Frazetta's painting for The Moon Maid? :

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 1:51 a.m. CST

    Saw it...

    by tomdolan04

    and sadly agree about it losing the heart of the series. After the series ended I was insanely excited to hear about these four DVD's - now I could give or take the last one. <p> It still had moments but they were few and far between. Also - did anyone else think the sex references were waaaay beyond the usual Futurama? It was weird - the shower scene was something straight out of fanfic, in quite an uncomfortable way.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 2:17 a.m. CST

    Blu-ray is DEAD...

    by Bill Clay

    ZD Net and Steve Jobs can't be wrong- <p>

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 3 a.m. CST

    goddamnit, it works so much better with 20 minutes

    by David Cloverfield

    Silly plots and jokes don't stay out their welcome. It forces the writers to be tighter (no place for dialogue they don't believe in a 100%) More variety between settings... I really wish someone gave them a shot to make simple episodes. (It's not an accident they didn't even have two-parters when the show was on.) The crew is still good, they're just crippled by the "movie format"

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 6:46 a.m. CST

    The movies are a different beast than the shows.

    by rbatty024

    As people have mentioned, the stories aren't as tight and there is a little more filler, but I still think the movies are pretty damn good. Bender's Big Score was up there with some of the finer episodes, and while Beast with a Billion Backs wasn't quite as good, the whole thing with Yivo was so batshits crazy that it really took me two viewings in order to really appreciate it. I watched both of these movies a second time when they hit TV and, like most Futurama, they're even better the second time.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 9:11 a.m. CST


    by Drunken Rage

    If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. But... name calling? What are you, 12?

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 11:04 a.m. CST

    Not even close to the other 2!

    by Timelord2112

    Bender's Game was decent, all Futurama is good on some level but the first two movies were way better than this one. I like the DnD stuff, and Mom and her bumbling sons are always fun but the fantasy world stuff was not spectacula (and this comes fom someone who loves Lord of the Rings and Futurama). I don't know what he means by being way better than Beast with a Billion Backs...I have watched that one several times and it is drop dead awesome. Futurama is like sex, even when it isn't that good, its still great! But I disagree this was better than the previous movie. This is my third favorite Futurama new movie.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 12:23 p.m. CST

    This story....

    by subtlety

    would have been much better served as separate episodes. Unlike the first two films, which use the expanded format to tell huge, complicated, and epic stories, this is a pretty small story with a long parody shoehorned in. The fantasy parody works about as well as the parody of Wizard of Oz in Tales of Interest II, but goes on longer and amounts to less. If they were going to go fantasy on us, they should have set the whole movie in the fantasy world to give it time to develope a life of its own, rather than just a generic spoof. As it is, it's sort of a bland parody which still takes up a third of the film's overall runtime, which makes it just wasted time as far as the plot goes (since the whole fantasy bit has no relation whatsoever to anything about the dark matter). Actually, the 'real world' parts are pretty solid, its just that this doesn't really deserve a movie treatment. Futurama is way too good to be wasting its time on LotR parodies. It's still probably worth a buy, though, especially if you want to see the series continue. I think if it does get to live, they ought to go back to episodes but allow themselves longer story arcs and two-or-three-parters when they make sense in order to tell a bigger story.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 1:48 p.m. CST

    I enjoyed Bender's Game more than the other 2

    by ls420

    great flick, didnt seem like a bunch of episodes stuck together.

  • Nov. 4, 2008, 7:10 p.m. CST

    So not interested, I'm not even gonna DL it.

    by V'Shael

    But glad to see that many other Futurama fans like myself know a rotting corpse when we see one. <p> Herc ol buddy, I'd call you a sell out if I didn't think your rave review could be explained by your poor taste.

  • Nov. 5, 2008, 12:15 p.m. CST


    by subtlety

    really? I am consistently amazed that self-professed "Futurama Fans" get so angry at the new ones, which as far as I'm concerned stand (at times, anyway) with the best of the series. Why is it a rotten corpse? Seems to me like the writers, animators, and actors are more lively, imaginative, and focused than ever before (in fact, I think that is why this new film was something of a letdown to me, it doesn't feel nearly as risky or ambitious as the first two). I don't mean to attack you at all - after all, your opinion is your opinion. But I would be interested in a list of your top favorite episodes of the series. I have a feeling that Futurama is a show that was liked for very different reasons by different people. For me, my favorite episodes are things like "The Sting" "Godfellas" "Roswell that Ends Well" and "The Luck of the Fryrish". They're episodes which to me very much embrace the pantheon of sci-fi literature and film which inspired the series (other episodes, like "That's Lobstertainment" are funny enough but feel like they could just as easily be good episodes of "The Simpsons" with a few tweaks). To me, it feels like the films fit right into the vein of episodes I like, in fact, they seem directly in line of where the series was going when it was canceled the first time. Again, I'm not trying to hate on you, I'm genuinely curious about your reply.

  • Nov. 5, 2008, 2:48 p.m. CST


    by V'Shael

    I'm not angry at these movies. I just don't care.<p> I was really excited for the first one, and while I lost my excitement I still watched the second one. <p> But when I found myself reading a book before the end of the movie, instead of watching the damn movie, I knew it was a failure. <p> This time around, I can't even summon up the effort to bother downloading the thing to watch it for free. <p> Give me my season 1-4 DVD's. I can watch them over and over again. I'll just pretend these movies didn't happen. <p> Favourite episodes in NO particular order : in addition to the 4 you mention (easily among my faves) I have to say that I HATED the Lobstertainment episode. I've seen it once. I'll never watch it again. It was just THAT bad. <p> I'd also include "Where No Fan has Gone Before", the What-If episodes, any episode with the floating brains but particularly the one where we find out Nibbler was in the lab in 1999. Sorry, some titles escape me right now. I've had a lot to drink with Obama being declared the victor. I kind of liked the one where Fry's girlfriend came back for an episode, and the show's finale with the Devil's Idle Hands is also a fave.<p> The movies, to me, seem very unlike the episodes. In humour, they are more Lobstertainment than anything else. I can honestly say I didn't laugh once at the movies, and was actually offended by the way they retroactively fucked with the ending of Jurassic Bark.

  • Nov. 5, 2008, 2:50 p.m. CST

    If it wasn't clear, those were episodes I liked.

    by V'Shael

    Lobstertainment was the one I hated.

  • Nov. 5, 2008, 3:40 p.m. CST


    by subtlety

    well I'll be damned, sounds like we pretty much agree on the series. Those ones you mention I agree 100% on. To me, the first two movies are equally clever, funny, and seeped in sci-fi tradition. I agree there are some weak notes in the movies, but I think overall their scope and imagination wins me over. <br><br> Not to sound patronizing, but if you've only seen them once I strongly reccomend watching them again; I found myself liking them more with each repeated viewing, after at first being kind of underwhelmed. Now, they stand among my favorites. But then again, I'm a prequel apologist too. <br> Yes we can!

  • Nov. 5, 2008, 3:49 p.m. CST


    by subtlety

    You might try watchin 'em as separate episodes. I think they work slightly better that way; they're a bit easier to digest and, I think, less tonally jarring during between acts.

  • Nov. 6, 2008, 7:30 p.m. CST


    by wyvern

    I didn't care that much for the first two movies but this third one was great.I downloaded each one too but this is the first one I can say for sure I will buy its just that good.

  • Nov. 9, 2008, 9:05 a.m. CST

    i liked it but i had one problem

    by IndyAbbey Jones

    it felt like 3 episodes patched together, and i relaize that essentially what these movies are, but the first two films felt like one 90 minute story, this one while funnier then the second film fielt like it hoped around ever 25 mins<P>but beside that i liked this one better then beast...but not as good as benders big score..that one was so good it could have probabaly managed a theatrical run<P>overall i'd give it 8.5/10, sad to think theres only one more of these movies left

  • Nov. 13, 2008, 9:43 a.m. CST

    I'm with you Subtlety.

    by Gilkuliehe

    All you said, I agree. That is all.