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Episode Recap: The Why of Fry

Nibbler enlists Fry in a mission to blow up evil brains bent on destroying the universe; Fry time travels into the past to prevent himself from being cryogenically frozen. 


Fry, acting very much the prima Donna, prepares for his next mission. Moments later, Leela and Bender return in the space ship, having already completed the mission, and show everyone the medals they were awarded for their efforts. Fry attempts to make a date with Leela, but she declines, telling him she’s got a date lined up with Mike, the mayor’s aide. Fry is crushed and feels like a loser. Later, Leela and Mike dine at Elzar’s, where Mike uses his clout to get the best tables in the house. After dinner, the pair go to a bar, where Leela bumps into Fry. As she may not make it back to her apartment, she asks Fry to take Nibbler for a walk. During the walk, Nibbler defecates a dark-matter sphere, which is so enormously heavy that Fry is unable to lift it. As a result, a police officer writes him a ticket for not picking up the mess. A short time later, Fry reacts with amazement when Nibbler starts talking to him. Nibbler knocks Fry unconscious and brings him to his tiny spaceship. Nibbler pilots the vessel to his home world, where he appears before the Nibblonian High Council. Two of the council members, Ken and Fiona, inform Fry that the fate of the universe rests on his shoulders.

Ken tells Fry that, due to a genetic malformation, he lacks a brainwave that makes him immune from a race of flying brains. On route to his mission, Fry is briefed by Nibbler, Ken and Fiona, who explains that the evil flying brains have been constructing a giant Info-Sphere, which is amassing all information in the universe. Once the task is complete, the evil brains will destroy the universe. Fry’s mission is to infiltrate the Info-Sphere, plant a bomb and blast the evil brains into another universe. But once Fry gains access to the Info-Sphere and plants the bomb, he cannot help but ask stupid questions about things he’s always wanted to know about. The Big Brain realizes Fry is the Fabled One. Determined not to fail, Fry starts the bomb’s timer. But the Big Brain shows him footage from his past on a view screen…footage that replays the moment Fry fell into the freezing tube at the cryogenics lab, but from a new angle. We see that Nibbler was in the room at the time. And when Fry tilted back on his chair, Nibbler leaned forward and blew his breath, giving just enough force to send Fry tumbling into the freezing tube. Fry’s bomb detonates…and the Info-Sphere and everyone in it is sucked into nothingness.

The Info-Sphere rematerializes in an alternate universe. The Big Brain tells Fry it’s still possible for him to go back in time and prevent Nibbler from pushing him into the freezing tube. Meanwhile, Mike takes Leela skating…having reserved the entire rink. But Leela observes Mike turning away a group of orphans who had hoped to go skating…and does not forgive him. The scene then shifts to New York City in the year 1999. Nibbler places a phone call to Panucci’s Pizza restaurant, then observes (from his hiding place) as Fry makes the delivery. Future Fry ripples into the scene and grabs Nibbler, choking him. Nibbler convinces Fry that by allowing his Old Self to enter the freezing tube, he stands a chance of getting Leela to love him in the future. Fry returns to the future, having saved the universe. But Nibbler erases everything that just happened from his memory. Later, Leela tells Fry that even though he’s not the most important person in the universe, she’s really glad to see him.