Futurama: S02E14: Mother’s Day
More Mom, Yay! She’s just an evil old bitch; I love her. Some steamy past romance comes to the forefront and we get to see a side of Bender never seen without mechanical coercement. It’s very disturbing. If you’re an animation fan, you won’t be disappointed by the massive scenes of destruction. If you’re a sci-fi fan, you won’t be disappointed by the remote controlled robot theory along with the usual freeze-frame references scattered throughout. There’ll be no rolling on the floor laughing, but you”ll giggle; I guarantee it.
The staff is gathered around the TV in the lounge watching a human interest piece on the news about Mother’s Day. In the future, it’s the day set aside for robots to pay homage to their creator, Mom. Bender returns from a Mother’s Day shopping trip laden with goodies that he actually purchased instead of stealing. The staff is agog and slightly put off by Bender’s sappy computerized card and protestations of love. Leela and Fry help Bender cart his gifts to Mom’s factory for delivery.
Mom’s grounds are crawling with robots from all walks fo life. All of their offerings are being loaded onto a conveyor belt leading into the factory. Inside, Mom is her private persona: loathsome and hateful. She has all of the gifts ground into a hocus-pocus cancer cure and has the cards made into toilet paper. Bottom line? Mom hates Mother’s Day; it dredges up bad memories. And this year, she plans to make everyone pay.
Fry, Leela and Bender are browsing the robot museum when Mom makes an announcement, gathering her robots for their annual “private” chat. Fry and Leela go back to the office, leaving Bender and his card (who spends the rest of the episode perched on his shoulder like a parrot) to their meeting. Mom makes like Evita, appearing on her balcony to greet her adoring public. This year, however, she asks her babies to rebel until she’s made her Supreme Overlord of Earth. Those antennae she installed on the robots are for more than a “science fictiony” look; they allow her to control them with a remote control device. She does just that, inciting them to the task at hand.
Back at Planet Express, the appliances start going haywire immediately. The coffee maker rebels, Hermes’ electric stapler collates him to the carpet and Amy’s hair dryer eats her hair. Things aren’t any better in the outside world. Cabs are crashing into each other at will (I know, some residents of present day New York would say that’s the norm), ATM’s won’t hand out cash, suicide booths are shutting their doors and much, much more. Everyone gathers in the lounge to try and figure out what’s going on as Bender walks in. Instead of helping straighten things out, he and the rest of the machinery in the office walk out to wreak havoc on the city. A special report breaks in, detailing how robots all over the city are on strike until they make Mom the leader.
Mom watches things unfold, reveling in the chaos and destruction she’s created. Her sons question her motivations, so she tells the story of her failed romance. While gazing at his photo, she tells them that the only man she ever loved walked out on her 70 years ago, leaving her bitter and cruel (NO!). She vows revenge if she ever sees his face again, shattering the picture against the wall. Her sons recognize the subject as . . . Professor Hubert Farnsworth.
Having no machinery has reduced the staff to a bonfire in the lounge with all the primitive accouterments, including sticks with pointy rocks lashed to them. Mom’s sons suddenly step from the shadows with a proposition: Get back together with Mom so she’ll stop the madness! Witnessing the staff’s obvious surprise and disgust, the Professor explains that he left Mom 70 years ago because she perverted his inventions into weapons of mass destruction and didn’t understand him. The thought of getting back with her disgusts the Professor. Leela comes up with the idea for him to seduce the remote control away from her instead of getting back together. Another special report airs, revealing the escalation on the strike. Violence against humans is now the game plan. The Professor relents, “If cop a feel I must, then cop a feel I shall!”
Mom’s sons leave them with a map to her cabin in the Bronx and the location of the remote, her left bra cup. Since they have no ship or hover car, Fry reinvents the wheel (badly) and pulls them to their destination in a cart. The sons are waiting with some flowers; Fry provides a six-pack of champagne. The Professor makes his move on the doorstep but she’ll have none of it until he produces the flowers. She relents and they settle on the couch to discuss the past. The discussion turns to anger which turns to passion. The Professor wrestles with Mom’s bra, finally getting it unhooked. When faced with her withered rack, he puts the plan aside in favor of some hot, dry sex.
Everyone is getting a little impatient waiting on the Professor to follow through. They have to make a run for the cabin when a group of bloodthirsty robots burst through the trees. once inside, they find the Professor and Mom basking in the afterglow. Mom asks them to help her find her bra so she can cancel the robots’ new programming. Unfortunately, it’s hanging from the ceiling fan, a machine, that won’t let them get to it. Just then, Bender and his card buddy drop down the chimney for some looting. As Bender goes for the champagne, his buddy tells him liquor will have no place in the new regime. At that, Bender rips the card in half and joins them in trying to retrieve the remote. It drops into Mom’s hands just as the horde of robots break in. She deactivates them at once. Amy congratulates the Professor on following through with the plan, angering Mom. She throws them out, in spite of his protestations of true love. Both go back to their former bitter, lonely lives.
This episode merits a hot, dry 7.75 out of 10.
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