Click to viewThe third Futurama straight-to-DVD movie is out, and it's throwing viewers right back into their parents' basements. Loaded with more references to Dungeons and Dragons than a Weezer song, Bender's Game follows the Planet Express crew as they deal with rising dark matter prices and old reliable villain Mom. After Bender goes mad from an overdose of D&D he sucks the rest of the cast into his fantasy world where Leela is a centaur, Bender is a Knight and Fry is Frydo. It's definitely the weakest of the movies so far, but there's still a lot to drink to. Spoilers ahead, gamers!If you're sick of epic fantasy, this isn't the Futurama DVD for you. After uncovering Mom's evil nibbler crap factory that is enslaving Nibblonians for their dark matter doo-doo to run the worlds space ships, the crew is stuck battling Mom's evil henchmen. Meanwhile Bender has become obsessed with his new sense of imagination, thanks to D&D, but it causes him to slip out of reality and live in his own fantasy land. Eventually he and the crew embark on a Lord Of the Rings quest. It's unfortunate that they decided to spoof LOTR as it's been out long enough that many of the jokes felt a little old hat. In fact many of the actual fantasy jokes fell pretty flat. That being said, all of the "side jokes" were worth the many Gollum quips. I was in stitches when Rosie from the Jetsons showed up in Bender's robot therapy for the mentally insane bots, and goes on a tangent about how she had to kill "the dog and the boy Elroy" because they were dirty.
So while the dry wit of Futurama was present, I wished they had spent it having fun with a different fantasy subject matter. But I guess any excuse to get centaur Leela to make out with fish nymph Amy.
The special features were standard fare but with one special note. The executive producers all gathered in writer Eric Kaplan's childhood basement to talk about why D&D was important to them and point out past D&D references from the Futurama series. This feature was actually quite endearing especially when they pointed out the rust monster from a past episode below and how one of their old dungeons had a rust monster in one room and a dog that would bite you in the other.
Overall Bender's Game is not my favorite of the Futurama DVDs but the humor is still there. If you can make it though a lot of the overdone fantasy jokes and withstand the terrible Morks (actually funny Robin Williams poke) then you'll be getting some quality Futurama humor. Just put your fingers in your ears and hum when they start to mix in Star Wars. Aren't we done with the "I am your father" jokes yet?