Should We Fight For Futurama's Future?

Television
by Charles Kenny
May 9, 2013 12:01 AM
26 Comments
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The internet greeted with dismay the news from Comedy Central that the Emmy Award-winning and you-can't-keep-a-good-dog-down Futurama was not being renewed after the seventh season airs later in 2013.

The show has already been here before after FOX cancelled the show's original run back in 2003. This time around, fans and denizens of the internet quickly sprang into action, launching a petition that currently has 12,000 signatures.

So that begs the question: Should we even fight for the future of the show?

Let's examine.

Pros:

Unparalleled hilariousness (what more do you want?)

A rabid fanbase that has already made a rare show revival succeed beyond expectations

It's somehow managed not to jump the shark (yet)

The TV show of choice for sci-fi nerds and comedy buffs alike

No more Leela and Amy, or for that matter, Bender.

It's stood the test of time better than many other shows its age

It's the last remaining home for math jokes by Harvard PhDs on TV.

 

Cons:

Nothing lasts forever and Futurama has already proven once to be too good to survive.

Seven seasons is a very respectable run for any TV show. Time for it to stand aside and give a newcomer a crack at the whip.

If it succeeds, the show will have had more comebacks than Elvis!

Falling audience numbers suggest its time has finally come.

It's better to go out on top than to slide into banality.

 

Theories being advanced is for the show to continue as a web series or to get picked up by Netflix a la Arrested Development.

So what's to be done? Should Futurama get one final chance at the limelight and glory like Rocky Balboa or is it time to put it to rest and give it the dignified respect it deserves?


Charles Kenny writes prolifically on his own blog, The Animation Anomaly.


Television
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More: Futurama, Matt Groening

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26 Comments

  • Kris | December 17, 2013 8:20 PMReply

    Bring back futurama I grew up with this show and love it

  • Mercury Adamant | December 12, 2013 8:31 AMReply

    REVIVE IT!, PLEEEAASE, I WANTS MORE FUTURAMA.. ELSE THE GOOGELY MOOGLEY WILL GET ME!...no but seriously, i want more futurama. where do i donate groening for this show?

  • Solinar | December 11, 2013 10:52 AMReply

    I am actually praying that someone will revive futurama. I don't care if it's Netflix, FX, or if Comedy Central fixes their brain damage and revive the show, I don't want it to be over.

  • TROJAN | September 7, 2013 10:52 AMReply

    I only want Futurama revived if Bender comes back.
    I believe that Futurama will not be futurama without Bender

    What do you think?

  • Wil in MSP | September 4, 2013 4:24 PMReply

    Tonight is the finale night and I have been trying to see if there is any "good news" out there about a revival. I am just so sad about this, I am searching for any hope at all.

    I haven't found immediate hope .. But I have found a whole lot of people out here in the interwebs that love the show as much as I do. And I have no doubt that the series will be back .. On Netflix, on the web or as DVD movies. I don't think this is the end. I don't think our beloved "Hermes" will lose his home! He can't! I already lost mine! That was enough! Goodness, light and smart comedy must ... And I think will .. Prevail!

  • Wil in MSP | September 4, 2013 11:06 PM

    Sweet Jesus! I am sorry! I swear I wrote Kiffie .. Brain fart! I hope Phil gets to keep his home, too!!

  • Dan | July 10, 2013 11:44 AMReply

    Futurama's revived seasons on Comedy Central haven't been of equal quality to the original run or even the movies, but they're certainly far from out of steam. I hope the show gets rescued.

  • Austin | June 23, 2013 11:58 PMReply

    Yes, It is simply one of the best shows around.

  • Stan B. | June 5, 2013 10:48 PMReply

    For sure, the simpsons are aired for 24 seasons... Futurama can be the same case... Simpsons are family show, every episode have just one or two sparks, and everybody eat it!!!... Futurama is more independent, smart-ass, clever, nasty and just awesome in totaly epically awesome insane conditions... keep it in air,... we need that show!!!

  • Adam Kemp | May 18, 2013 8:53 PMReply

    Agree with Alexis. always shied away from Netflix. and all other pay movie sites for that matter. yet i would gladly subscribe to Netflix if they picked up the torch. damn right i've signed the petition. also whored it out on fb. and sent CC an email regarding it (as petition pleaded)

  • Alexis | May 18, 2013 1:42 AMReply

    I signed the petition, and let me just say... If Netflix picks up Futurama, I will subscribe to Netflix. It isn't as though Futurama is the only thing I'd get for my $7 (or whatever it is) a month, but it is the first thing that's made me willing to consider it.

  • Gabriela | May 18, 2013 1:21 AMReply

    this is is only show that gives us joy, sadness and lots of laughs in each episode!
    Don't let it die, we love it!

  • matt | May 17, 2013 4:10 PMReply

    If the simpsons can run for 24 years then futurama can run for at least 15 and still have new entertaining and interesting episodes.

  • Jonnie from France | May 17, 2013 11:30 AMReply

    So sad to hear from France, that Futurama is in danger..... Sniff...
    I can't believe that such a good serie like this, full of colours, with great voices, always clever stories, and optimisms for this world to come, can disapear....
    if it happens i would just say a huge thank to the creators for all the laugh i had in front of my TV,
    i truly admit, it's the best tv show i ever watched in my entire life

    Bring it Back the show i beg you Pleeeeaaase,!!!
    I'm gonna miss them all especially Mr Zoidberg (woob oob oob oob oob oob)

  • mark | May 17, 2013 10:52 AMReply

    the show is way too clever for most people it seems. they rather watch stupid reality shows :P i really hope someone will pick up the show and bring it back. i was so happy to see it come back and really sad to notice it was cancled yet again without even finishing the running season ..how dare you comedy central, you greedy ignorant f*cks

  • futurepotentate | May 16, 2013 1:07 AMReply

    For those who say: "Well, it's been a good run; but perhaps it's time to make room for new shows";
    I say: "Well, perhaps you haven't noticed, but we're running dry on shows with any real substance - notice the ever up-swinging trend of... reality shows".
    For those who say: "There is plenty of material already available to last countless hours of entertainment", I challenge you to re-watch the series through >n=20, and dare you to honestly say that it doesn't make you crave new episodes.
    For those of you who say that network/cable t.v. is an outmoded business model that can't even begin to assess the demands of an evolving viewership; I say: true - Nielsen ratings don't even begin to account for the majority of the fans; and Comedy Central should plug themselves into reality and realize that for every person that signs the petition, there are countless others who would but won't. These reasons range from cynicism that such public organization methods work to simple ignorance that there is an issue. I, for instance, only found out that the show was being cancelled through the 'grape-vine' a few days ago, as I don't scan the internet for news on television shows that I love. That doesn't mean that I love Futurama any less than those proud few [thousand] who responded immediately. It just means that Comedy Central will be facing far more blowback from this than their rubric estimated...
    I've never cared about any television show enough to fight for it, other than Futurama. It isn't my whole life, but it has found an important place within it, as any of my ex-gf's would attest.
    In summation: if Comedy Central cancels Futurama, I will laugh as I dance on the metaphorical grave of the network, while the Comedy Central execs find themselves ground into Torgo's Executive Powder for their obsolescence.

  • Antique87 | May 12, 2013 5:30 AMReply

    Well, I disliked Season 6B [I think this is the point where TV numbers RIGHTFULLY started to decline for real], but Season 7A heavily improved my trust in Futurama. That was a nice smooth season. Also there is a STEADY progression of F/L relationship now, and I loved it. I hope Season 7B won't change course and will be even better than Season 7A.

    I think Futurama should live and Maurice LaMarche should have money to pay for his luxury house =).

    Sorry for my bad English. Good luck with finding a new home for Futurama.

  • Maurice LaMarche | May 11, 2013 2:35 PMReply

    First, let me say how incredibly touched I am by the fan appreciation for the show, and for the incredible support for its return! That petition has grown by a thousand names since this article went to press! Amazing.
    As the "Hank Azaria of Futurama" (Matt Groening's nickname for me), I can only add that I just moved into a huge house in the hills, and I really need the show to come back from cancellation so I can pay for it. (Ha Ha... Oops! That wasn't me, that was my inner Calculon speaking! Heh heh! JK, as the kids say.)
    As for concerns for the show's "jumping the shark", I can only tell you that this summer's crop of episodes is among our best, funniest, and most thought-provoking. Our writers all feel there are so many more stories to tell, and the beauty of sci-fi is, your palette never runs dry. There's no scenario, no story asking one of the "big questions", that can't be brought to the scripted page by some invention or other, even if you have to use the fing-longer to operate it. And, as actors, we in the cast just love all the creative opportunities the show brings us in creating new characters, and exploring our established ones.
    So, keep the support coming, fans and friends. We who work on Futurama would love to keep bringing you the futuristic funny.
    And seriously, I did just move into a big house, and I have to pay for it.

  • Mario500 | May 11, 2013 1:08 PMReply

    I believe Comedy Central's decision to end "Futurama" came at the right time since nothing good can last forever (due to age and fatigue) and the series has enough episodes for us enjoy for many decades to come and provided many details about the main characters that many viewers and listeners of the series should be less likely to want more episodes.

    By the way, I believe this part of the article should be listed under "Cons":

    "No more Leela and Amy, or for that matter, Bender."

  • Gordon | May 10, 2013 10:48 AMReply

    As creator of the petition, I feel that the show should continue. It's got great writing, wonderful voice actors, and the art style is familiar yet totally unique in it's own way.
    Fan campaigns at least show the creators, and the talent involved with the show that there are those who care deeply about it.
    Star Trek came back because of it, and went on to be even more successful.
    And if it truly is the end for Fry, Leela, the Professor, Zoidberg, Amy and Bender and pals, then it had a good run, and will be fondly remembered. I treasure the series deeply and there's not a day goes by when I don't think about how things could be in the future.
    If one fan can make a difference to change people's perceptions, then I'd like to show those involved with Futurama that we care.
    Other shows have continued long until past their prime, yet somehow they keep going.
    Futurama will survive. Whether on the air, or on dvd or in comic books, or in our hearts.
    G

  • ILDC | May 9, 2013 5:48 PMReply

    I'd like a big-budget Fox comeback like Family Guy.

  • Isaac | May 9, 2013 9:36 AMReply

    Aren't television shows governed by how much money they make? Petitions won't change that. If Netflix feels like Futurama is a good investment, then they should pick it up. They're not running a charity.

  • Doug | May 9, 2013 8:44 AMReply

    Futurama ...continue? Of course! It's the smartest and funniest comedy on television. If the show moved to a web series format that would be okay, as that's how I'm watching it now anyhow (netflix). I was totally crestfallen when it was cancelled the first time around but not surprised - I actually was banking on it being cancelled due to it being so good. We viewers must reward shows that don't get worse as they run, this show has actually gotten funnier!

  • Richard | May 9, 2013 1:48 AMReply

    I am devoted to Futurama with a passion that would disturb any sane individual, I mean true fanaticism, and yet...I've had to say goodbye to it so many times already. The pleasure of seeing it return has never completely evened out the sadness of having seen it go. I don't look forward to going through that yet again. My heart couldn't stand breaking one more time.

    But on the other hand, if Futurama were gone, I'd have no choice but to build my own Futurama. With blackjack! And hookers! In fact, forget the blackjack!

  • Joe | May 9, 2013 12:58 AMReply

    I'm a huge Futurama fan, so this may be a tad biased, but I think it's worth it to fight for Futurama's return (again).

    While 7 seasons is a respectable length, the team behind Futurama has already expressed interest in continuing the series on another network or, as you stated, a web-series. As long as the original creators are still behind the show so passionately and with more stories to tell, why not let them? They've shown no signs of slowing down and I think they've earned the opportunity to really follow something they believe in so passionately.
    As for the declining ratings, 12,000 supporters doesn't quite sound like that. I think one of Futurama's main problems on TV is that that may not be where their core demographic is anymore. It's a nerdy show getting a large portion of it's fan base from college kids or internet savvy viewers, a lot of which have cut cable out of their lives in favor of streaming services and channels. For such a futuristic show, it stuck to an old model of distribution and should consider new avenues where their core demographic will likely be.
    The show still has a lot of life left in it, and it has a great opportunity to try a new kind of business model as far as TV goes. I say give it the chance.

  • Crystal | May 9, 2013 12:38 AMReply

    I'm very behind on Futurama, but I'll try to contribute.

    What I am hoping is that the last episode of Futurama will be a "finale" finale (which it's already done 2 episodes in that style). I don't want it to end on a "standard" episode. I actually do think Futurama has had plenty of episodes (this is someone who's used to 13 and 26 episode anime and doesn't get why cartoon fans complain about shows ending after 70 or 100 episodes).

    I was more fighting for shows not to get cancelled when I was worried their failure would discourage studios from making similar shows (i.e. Motorcity) or shows of a similar caliber.

    I really do love Futurama though (and its actors) so if suddenly it turned out it wasn't being cancelled, I'd be happy with that too! There are other things that should've gone on longer though.

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