Anthology of Interest II
“I,Meatbag”—The Professor fine tunes his What-If Machine. Bender asks what it would be like if he were human,and the machine reveals a reality in which Bender is turned into a human. The Professor hopes to win a Nobel Prize for making Bender human, but Human Bender is more concerned with discovering the joys of his new flesh. Instead of resting, to prepare for the Professor’s presentation to the Nobel Committee, Human Bender runs away. On the lam, Human Bender parties endlessly. At that last minute, Human Bender is tracked down, and dragged before the Nobel judges …but by this time, he weighs 2000 pounds, is drunk, and hits on every woman in sight. The Nobel judges are initially horrified by Human Bender, but he invites them to try his way of life for themselves. As men of science, they feel the irresistible pull of experimentation. All the scientists drink, dance, eat junk food, and make out happily. They agree that Human Bender was right, and that he has taught them how to really live. But as the scientists are about to award the Nobel Prize, Fry notices that Human Bender is dead. “Raiders of the Lost Arcade”—Next, Fry asks what life would be like if it were more like the one thing at which he excels: Videogames. The What-If Machine shows a world in which Fry and his friends travel in an “asteroids”-type space ship. On television, they see the President ready to sign a treaty with Ambassador Kong, of the planet Atari. But Ambassador Kong attacks instead of signing. The Pentagon calls on Fry to intercede, because of his video game expertise. The General overseeing the operation is very PacMan-esque, and when bombs start exploding, the group runs to the escape tunnels, with the General making “waca waca” noises. The tunnels amount to a PacMan maze, complete with dots, which the General eats. They emerge from the tunnels to discover alien ships, a la Space Invaders. Fry fires at the alien ships, but they steadily gain ground. Fry blasts a hole through his own safety shield, and blasts away several more enemies. Soon only one ship remains on the attack, but it’s almost all the way down, and moving fast. Fry panics, and admits he never could manage to obliterate the last ship. The enemy ship lands, and its crew, including Ambassador Kong, demands quarters— millions of them. The Professor, Amy, et al refuse, insisting they need their quarters for laundry, but they finally compromise. “Wizzin’”—Leela asks, “What if I found my true home?” But when the professor pulls the lever on the What-If Machine, he hits Leela in the head, knocking her unconscious. She dreams that she’s at the helm of the Planet Express ship, in the midst of a raging tornado. The ship crash-lands in a wildly colorful land. When Leela emerges from the ship, she discovers she has landed on a witch with ruby red boots. Leela steals the boots as a group of short characters approach her. The short characters explain to Leela that she’s in Ozz…a land like “Oz,” but not copywrited. Amy appears, introducing herself as the Cute Witch of the North. Amy suggests that Leela try to get the Professor, who lives in the Emerald Laboratory, to fix the damaged ship. Leela heads off down the yellow brick road, and encounters Fry, dressed as a scarecrow. Leela invites Scarecrow Fry to accompany her, and see if the Professor can give him a brain. The two of them meet a Tinman-like Bender, who wants a heart, to help him pump beer out of his system. Dr. Zoidberg joins them in hopes of getting some courage. In the wicked witch’s castle, Mom sends evil birds out to catch Leela and her friends. The birds succeed, and at the castle, Mom explains that she wants to adopt Leela. Leela agrees, as long as she gets to be evil. Bender pops some champagne to celebrate, but the champagne sprays over Mom, melting her. So Leela and her friends go to see the Professor. The Professor gives Dr. Zoidberg a gun ,so he won’t need any courage. When the Professor tells Leela she can click her heels together three times to go home, Leela instead clicks them together and says she wants to be a witch. But real Leela wakes up.