|← Previous||Navigation in production order||Next →|
|← Previous||Navigation in broadcast order||Next →|
|Season 7 episode|
Broadcast season 10 episode
|Written by||Michael Rowe|
|Directed by||Raymie Muzquiz|
|Title caption||Put On 2-D Glasses Now|
|First air date||19 June 2013|
|Title reference||The 1971 film Two-Lane Blacktop|
"2-D Blacktop" is the one hundred and twenty-ninth episode of Futurama, the fifteenth of the seventh production season and the first of the tenth broadcast season. It aired on 19 June 2013, on Comedy Central. Professor Farnsworth joins a gang of street-racing punks.
Act I: "Yo, you wanna hook up wid our crew?"
While the crew prepare to depart for a delivery, Farnsworth finishes turbocharging the ship's matter compressor and naming the ship "Bessie". Leela argues with Farnsworth over the tradeoff between speed and safety, suggesting that he install seat belts instead. He dismisses her concerns, and she attempts to make the delivery. The ship barely clears the hangar doors before the malfunctioning and crashing back to Earth in a fiery explosion. Representing the severely injured crew, Leela insists on getting a new, safer ship while Sal tows Bessie away. Farnsworth takes this very personally and storms out with an apparently permanent "Goodbye!" He goes on to break into the scrapyard where Bessie lies in a heap, awaiting destruction. He declares that he will convert the ship into a hot-rod using the spare parts lying around the scrapyard.
The next morning, Farnsworth flies away from the scrapyard in Bessie, now a nearly unrecognizable junk heap. Driving like an old man through the city, Farnsworth is unaware that he is impeding a multitude of frustrated commuters. The drivers of two muscle-hovercars move up on either side of him to scold and mock him for "making the streets unsafe for us maniac street-racers." Farnsworth challenges them to a race, which they mockingly accept, given Bessie's condition. As Farnsworth counts to three to start the race, he banks his ship left and right to unload the piles of scrap he has been inexplicably carrying, revealing that he has indeed converted Bessie into a hot-rod. A brief race ensues, in which the police give chase. The other racers flee in a conventional fashion, but Farnsworth escapes the police extra-dimensionally using a dimensional drift device he had installed the night before. He regroups with the waiting racers, who are awestruck by his driving and invite him to join their "crew".
Act II: "Hurray! A tie!"
At headquarters, Leela unveils the new ship, a windowless, nearly featureless, gray box that promises to be both safe and boring, outside and in. The maiden voyage is to a place of glorious beauty, but the delivery crew have no idea. Not only are they unaware of the grandeur, they are also unaware that the ship has made the delivery for them. It opens the exit door only when it has returned the crew safely back home. Leela seems to have suddenly become a soccer mom: Hermes sends her to shop for groceries and deliver Fry and Bender to karate class. During Leela's return from these errands to headquarters, Farnsworth pulls alongside her in his hot-rod and tells her that she is not cool. Leela exclaims that she can still outdrive him, even in her ultra-safe ship. As they race on a looped track, Farnsworth again uses his dimensional drift device to attempt to win. Unfortunately, he ends up facing the wrong direction toward a head-on collision with Leela's ship. Fry is standing between the two ships as they collide, compressing to near-flatness in a neat disc shape.
Act III: "We're back, baby!"
Gallows humor notwithstanding, the spectators presume Fry, Leela, and Farnsworth to be dead. The three are not dead; in fact, Hermes' dark humor is closer to the mark. As a two-dimensional but otherwise healthy Farnsworth conjectures, "It seems that colliding at relativistic speed has collapsed us down into two dimensions!" The three of them then find out that Bender was sleeping in the backseat of Bessie and therefore he got collapsed too.
Two creatures calling themselves the Lords of Flatbush arrive and report that a feast is being held in honor of Farnsworth and the others. At the feast, when Farnsworth attempts to explain three-dimensionality to the King of Flatbush, the King becomes angry and orders Farnsworth to be executed. Farnsworth and the others flee. Arriving at the two ships, which are perfectly functional, Leela overrides Farnsworth's suggestion that they use the safer ship. Safe from the Flatbushers, Farnsworth laments that he and the others will die here, but Leela suggests that he use the dimensional drift device to attempt a return to the 3-D world. He complies, and just as Sal and the others in the 3-D world begin to cremate the remains, the remains themselves become the normal Bessie and her normal passengers. That is, Farnsworth and the others have returned to the 3-D world. All is well, and Hermes indicates that the entire incident lasted about five minutes.
The episode finishes with a mockingly corny and sappy scene: Minx, the street-racer whose father verbally abused her by leaving things unsaid, receives a phone call from her father, who then apparently says those things.
|“||got to see Matt Groening, Leela AND Fry (Leela has two eyes and looks like Peggy Bundy FYI). No Bender though (I think he was scared)||”|
The Professor explains how the digestive system works in the 2-D dimension.
A design of the Planet Express ship after being crashed.
- The Professor names the Planet Express ship "Bessie".
- The music used during the inner city chase between Professor Farnsworth and the gang of street-racing punks is the song "Highway Star" by the band Deep Purple.
- Coincidentally, the Wii U game Mario Kart 8 features a track — Mario Circuit — that is based on a Möbius dragstrip.
- The episode was originally supposed to be the second episode of its broadcast season. The Beast with a Billion Backs, which also features characters in two dimensions, is the second film. "Reincarnation", which, too, features characters in two dimensions, is the second segmented episode of the second run.
- An image of the Planet Express ship and the new Planet Express ship on the Möbius dragstrip is used on the individual episode menus for Volume 8.
- Click here to see cultural mentions made in this episode.
- The episode's title is a reference to the 1971 road movie Two-Lane Blacktop, directed by Monte Hellman and starring James Taylor, Dennis Wilson, Warren Oates and Laurie Bird.
- The Professor naming the ship "Bessie" could be a reference to Doctor Who, in which the Third Doctor had a car named Bessie.
- A wrecked USS Enterprise from the Star Trek franchise can be seen in the scrap when the Professor approaches Impound Lot 136.
- The yellow car that Sal melts down is a reference to Speed Buggy, and the white racing car he melts afterwards is reference to Speed Racer's car. The man who gasps after Sal melts down the car is a parody of Speed Racer himself.
- New New Jack City is named after the 1991 film New Jack City, which is set in New York.
- Thingly Wiggly is a parody of the supermarket chain Piggly Wiggly.
- The third act is a parody of the 1884 book Flatland, written by Edwin Abbott Abbott, which was adapted into a film in 2007.
- The Lords of Flatbush are named after the 1974 film of the same name.
- The Bonneville Salt Flatlands in the second dimension are a reference to the Bonneville Salt Flats located in Utah. There is also an area of the flats known as the Bonneville Speedway, where many land speed records have been broken.
- The episode contains many references to mathematics, including topology and fractal geometry.
- Bender's vandalism tile-art from "Proposition Infinity" re-appears.
- Fry previously did karate in "Attack of the Killer App" and "Forty Percent Leadbelly".
- Leela says that the Professor should install seat belts in the ship, but in "Roswell that Ends Well" the ship has seat belts.
--Since the Professor says that "seat belts are dead weight" he could have removed them in the meantime to feed his demonic speed lust.
- Leela introduces the new ship as slower to make it safer, however later on she is able to beat the old ship in a drag race.
- When they are in the race, the Professor is wearing his racing clothes (black leather lab coat, black hat) but when he arrives in the second dimension he is wearing his standard attire.
- In the second dimension, Bender walks out of the new ship, but, in the establishing shot, only Leela is in the ship.
- In the second dimension, it would be impossible to turn one's head from right to left, and the Professor does this several times.
- Bender claims he can't picture the fourth dimension, yet he and the rest of the crew entered the fourth dimension in "Möbius Dick" (which is also the fifteenth episode of its season).
- This may be due to Bender's ignorance of significant facts and events.
- Initially the Lords of Flatbush have guns, but when chasing the crew they only have spears.
- It's possible that spears were the closest weapons at hand for them to chase the crew with.
- The Professor makes it clear that it's impossible to go around others in the second dimension, but when they are eating at the castle, several of the creatures are sitting behind them.
- The creatures are actually above, not behind. As the Professor says, the laws of physics in the second dimension are different. For example: if the Professor is at coordinate 0,0 another creature could be present at 0,1 or 1,0, etc.
- Hermes claims the crew has only been gone for five minutes, however it was afternoon when they left, and it's clearly dusk when they arrive back.
- Helper is clearly seen working on the railroad, yet his gravestone was previously in "The Six Million Dollar Mon".
Professor Farnsworth: Ah, perfect timing! I just turbo-charged the ship's matter compressor!
Fry: What's the matter compressor?
Professor Farnsworth: Nothing's the matter, Fry, now that I've turbo-charged the matter compressor.
Professor Farnsworth: That's it, you hoodlums! Your mouth just wrote a PayPal transfer request that your butt has insufficient funds to honor!
Racer #1: Yo. It is on! Before that it was off.
Racer #2: Marks. Set. Go, yo!
Amy: [upset] Do you think they're... dead?
Hermes: No, no. I choose to believe they're alive in some other dimension. Screamin' in agony.
[Amy wipes away a tear.]
Amy: I hope so.
King of Flatbush: The feast is served. Choose whatever two-dimensional foods you like. Crêpes, flatbread, McDonald's hamburgers. You get the idea.
Leela: Yum, apples! [She grabs a piece of apple and attempts to eat it.] Hey, how come I can't swallow?
Professor Farnsworth: Hmm, I guess it's because our two-ended digestive system can't exist in this dimension. I suppose that could be an issue.
[Leela mumbles and spits the piece of apple out.]
Leela: I knew it! I knew he'd get us killed somehow!
[The Professor begins to type on a computer.]
Professor Farnsworth: As you can see, or rather can't see, but take my word for it, such a digestive system would divide a 2-D being into separate pieces!
King of Flatbush: He's opening our minds to new ideas. Kill him!
- Albert (montage)
- Auctioneer (cameo, 5:42)
- Debut: Benny (mentioned in speech only)
- Crack addict (cameo, 9:25)
- Professor Farnsworth
- H.G. Blob
- Debut: King of Flatbush
- Debut: Lords of Flatbush
- Debut: Minx
- Nina (montage)
- Debut: Pimparoo
- Randy Munchnik
- Sally (montage)
- Sam (human) (montage)
- Debut: Speed Racer look-alike
- Debut: Street-racing gang
- Debut: Yellow car
- Debut: Big Boy Karate
- Debut: Bonneville Salt Flatlands
- Debut: Glorianimous 3
- Debut: Möbius dragstrip
- Impound Lot 136
- Debut: New New Jack City
- Planet Express conference room
- Planet Express hangar
- Planet Express headquarters
- Planet Express lab
- Debut: Second dimension
- Debut: Thingly Wiggly
- Tokyo (mentioned in speech only)
- ^ a b Wall Photos. (Facebook.) 14 December 2011. Retrieved on 14 April 2012.
- ^ "Just Fan" (23 February 2012). "Futurama: Futurama News (pre-season 7)". (PEEL.) Retrieved on 23 February 2012.
- ^ Jesse David Fox (05 February 2013). Watch a Preview of Futurama’s Seventh Season. (Vulture.com.) Retrieved on 17 August 2013.
- ^ Countdown to Futurama: Eat and Digest Clip. (Comedy Central Tumblr blog.) 30 April 2013. Retrieved on 30 April 2013.
- ^ Countdown to Futurama: Maniac Street Racers. (Comedy Central Tumblr blog.) 13 June 2013. Retrieved on 13 June 2013.