Opinion: Futurama is clearly superior to The Simpsons. Fact: You can find all the life lessons and advice you’ll ever need buried in between this show’s many, many cancellations. Today, we’re going to learn about life from the greatest men and women of the 31st century. Also Bender.
On Radical Self-Acceptance
In our lame old 21st century, we have to worry about things like “fitting in” and “self-esteem”. In the 31st century, they have got it all figured out. Hedonismbot embraces pleasure wherever he can find it, no matter how uncouth. Fry accepts his rampant stupidity. Even Professor Farnsworth’s totally over our primitive notions of modesty. No matter how much they should be utterly ashamed of themselves, they’re not.
Of course, no one models this beautiful idea of self-acceptance quite like Bender. He has the kind of confidence that led him to become a god that one time. Or that other time. He was an Ultimate Robot Fighter, performed on stage with Beck and has even been Santa for a while. Pretty great resume for a guy who was only programmed to bend girders. Follow his example and believe you can be as great as Bender thinks he is. You can’t, of course. But at least you can try.
On Romance and Settling
If you’re ever feeling bad about your love life, just remember it took Fry over a thousand years to bounce back after his girlfriend dumped him on New Years. As the 31st century equivalent of a high school dropout, Fry managed to work his way up from delivery boy, to unemployed, to delivery boy all in the span of a single episode. Still, it wasn’t enough to win him the affection of the woman he was creepily obsessing over.
Even after a string of office romances, meaningless hookups, accidentally becoming his own grandfather and that one time with a radiator, Fry never lost sight of his one true… I’m gonna call it, love? Leela eventually caved into Fry’s incessant pestering and gave Fry a chance after a horrible coin-flipping accident. With constant training, Fry eventually learned to be a competent boyfriend, until they lived as happily ever after as they could get. Truly, their story is a beautiful model for anyone that’s ever settled for whoever they worked with at the time.
On Family and Parenthood
While Bender is obviously the greatest at giving parental advice, it’s Professor Farnsworth and Hermes Conrad who show us the best examples of parenthood in the series. Most notably in The Route of All Evil. Here, the children Dwight and Cubert start a delivery service to compete with their parent’s company Planet Express. Hermes and the Professor are naturally supportive and encouraging.
The show also tackles the tough subject of parents estranged from their adult children. Leela, orphaned from birth, reunites with her gross, genetically inferior sewer mutant parents. Professor Farnsworth made up with his impossibly still-alive parents after they were rescued from the Near-Death Star nursing home. And when Amy was wrestling with her newfound robosexuality, her parents were there to support her decision.
On the Inevitable Heat Death of the Universe
Life isn’t predictable and it certainly isn’t easy. No one knows this better than Fry. He lost his entire life once when he was frozen in a tube for a million years. Then a second time when he accidentally travelled forward in time to the end of the universe. All things considered, he was pretty chill about it. I don’t even handle it that well if my dinner plans change at the last minute
Fry faced some rough stuff, but he always rolled with the punches. Even the literal ones. Sure he was stupid. In fact, he was so cosmically stupid that he was often uniquely suited to accidentally save the universe. And yet he was probably the happiest, most easy-going person who’s ever lived. If you ever feel stressed, overwhelmed or burdened by the existential crisis that haunts every conscious being in a cold, unfeeling universe, just look to Fry and his special mind. He may not actually be that helpful, but at least he’ll try.