Top 10 Bender Moments On Futurama



Top 10 Bender Moments On Futurama

VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild WRITTEN BY: Nick Spake
In a show full of wonderfully whacky characters, Bender is still the best of "Futurama." For this list, we'll be looking at the funniest, most obscene, and occasionally touching moments from Bender Bending Rodríguez, voiced by the one and only John DiMaggio. Our countdown includes when Bender loses his body, Bender on the Titanic, when he meets Fry, and more!
In a show full of wonderfully whacky characters, Bender is still the best of "Futurama." For this list, we’ll be looking at the funniest, most obscene, and occasionally touching moments from Bender Bending Rodríguez, voiced by the one and only John DiMaggio. Our countdown includes when Bender loses his body, Bender on the Titanic, when he meets Fry, and more! What's your favorite Bender moment? Share your love in the comments below!

#10: Stranded on an Island

“Obsoletely Fabulous”

To compete with Planet Express’ new robot, Bender heads in for an upgrade. Chickening out, he flees to a desert island where other obsolete robots reside. Although Bender initially misses technology, he soon adapts to the environment in more ways than one, trading his shiny body for a wooden one. Bender decides to live a peaceful life… which entails going back to civilization and destroying technology. Ironically, a talking wooden robot is still more technologically advanced than anything the 21st century has produced thus far. While it all turns out to be an illusion, Bender’s upgrade provides a rare window into his deep-seated insecurities and a not-so-rare glimpse at his maniacal tendencies. As the episode closes, we also see the world through Bender’s filtered eyes.

#9: Bender Meets Fry

“Space Pilot 3000”

It’s the moment that kicked off a sometimes beautiful and sometimes toxic friendship. Arriving in the future, Fry is amazed to encounter a real robot. And what’s the first thing to come out of this high-tech machine’s mouth? “Bite my shiny metal ass.” And with that, an iconic running gag was born. Given Matt Groening’s success with Bartmania, it was only a matter of time until we got a Bender action figure that spouts familiar catchphrases. Even in the 31st century, toys still have pull strings. Bender’s most valuable asset became such a staple of the series that it took center stage in an episode. Although Bender told him to bite it the moment they met, Fry somehow overlooked his derriere all these years.

#8: Bender Loses His Body

“A Head in the Polls”

Before Bender lost his ass, he sold most of his body for cash. Considering that Bender’s funniest feature is his foul mouth, he loses none of his appeal as just a head. Being a bending unit, though, Bender eventually starts to miss everything from the neck down, especially when Richard Nixon buys his body. To retrieve his body, Bender teams with Fry and Leela for what you could call Watergate 2.0. Once again, tapes prove to be Dick’s downtown. We love that the 31st century still finds uses for retro tech like 8-track tapes. While Bender gets his body back, Nixon still becomes President of Earth. We’re not sure if this is a happy or sad ending, but it’s certainly a humorous one.

#7: Bender Duplicates

“Bender’s Big Score”

Bender may be a supporting character, but he got top billing for “Futurama’s” first feature. To complete a complicated time travel plot, Bender goes back to the year 2000 and emerges nearly 1,000 years later. Bender doesn’t get lonely during this period, convincing an army of time-paradox duplicates to stick around. Rather than wrap up everything in a tidy package, Bender rips the fabric of time. It’s a hilariously epic cliffhanger that leaves us with another classic Bender line: “Well, we’re boned.” While time-paradox duplicates are all doomed, this doesn’t stop Bender from duplicating himself again later on, this time using the Professor’s machine. Some might argue that one Bender is enough, but we say the more, the messier, and the messier, the merrier.

#6: Bender on the Titanic

“A Flight to Remember”

While the market was already oversaturated with “Titanic” parodies, “Futurama” delivered one of the funniest and most heartfelt. In addition to expanding upon Fry and Leela’s relationship, the doomed voyage sparks a star-crossed romance between the penniless Bender and the wealthy Countess. This leads to several send-ups of the 1997 film, including Bender drawing the Countess like one of his Earth robots. For all the in-jokes, we also get to see a softer side of Bender as he puts someone else above his shellfish needs, risking his life to save the Countess. In a role reversal, the Countess meets her end while Bender’s heart will go on in the form of a bracelet. Unfortunately, it’s not as valuable as The Heart of the Ocean.

#5: Bender Loses His Soul

“Hell Is Other Robots”

Can a machine have a soul? It’s a quandary that’s been explored in countless sci-fi properties, but “Futurama” raises an even more perplexing question: Does Bender have a soul? Our money was on “no” until this episode. Finding religion, Bender converts to Robotology and renounces all sinning. Obviously, this doesn’t last long, resulting in a visit from The Robot Devil, voiced by Homer Simpson himself, Dan Castellaneta. Bender lands a spot in Robot Hell, which is naturally under Atlantic City. Fry and Leela’s mission to rescue Bender comes complete with a glitzy musical number and a fiddle-playing contest in a nod to “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.” Bender might belong in Robot Hell, but he rises above the devil’s robot army in angelic fashion.

#4: Death to Humans

“Fear of a Bot Planet”

In another episode where Fry and Leela need to rescue Bender, the robot gets taken prisoner on a planet where humans are outlawed. The episode does an effective job building suspense as Fry and Leela worry about Bender’s well-being, putting their lives on the line to save him. This makes it all the more hilarious when they finally find Bender. In less than a day, Bender goes from a prisoner to an extremist leader who vows to destroy all humans. Sometimes we forget how evil Bender can be until we’re given a hard-hitting reminder. Bender’s affection for his friends ultimately trumps his hatred for humanity. Of course, this wouldn’t be the last time he joined a robot society and proclaimed, “death to humans.”

#3: Becoming a Father

“The Bots and the Bees”

Speaking of evil actions, even the Robot Devil thinks it’s cold when Bender trades his estranged first-born son for an army of the damned. Thankfully, Bender is a slightly better father to his next son, Ben. Even then, though, Bender initially tries to ditch Ben with his mother Bev, a soda machine that sounds an awful lot like Wanda Sykes. Since Bev is more neglectful, Bender is left to bond with Ben over belching, booze, and burglarizing. Alas, Ben isn’t able to follow in his father’s footsteps without a bending card. In one of his few selfless moments, Bender allows Ben to have a bending card installed, but it comes at the expense of his memory card and any knowledge of his upbringing.

#2: Bender Meets God Entity


Hedonistic, sociopathic, nihilistic, these are just some of the words that have been used to describe Bender. So, you can imagine the anarchy that ensues when he becomes God to a tiny civilization. Even when Bender tries to do right, the micro society is destroyed. As Bender continues to drift through space, he encounters an entity that may or may not be God. Either way, it’s much wiser than Bender, but the entity doesn’t have all the answers. What ensues is a surprisingly profound conversation about why the entity doesn’t answer every prayer and when it does, it’s usually with a “light touch.” As different as these two are, their meeting shows how God might not be much different than a mortal like Bender.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Bender in the Robot Mob, “Bender Gets Made”

Born to Be a Goon

Bender the TV Star, “Bender Should Not Be Allowed on TV”

As Per Usual, Bender Steals the Show

Bender the Car, “The Honking”

Move Over Christine, There’s Another Lethal Vehicle in Town

Bender Sober, “I, Roommate”

And You Thought Drunk Bender Was Ugly

Bender Meets Finn & Jake, “Leela and the Genestalk”

From One John DiMaggio Character to Another

#1: Hermes’s Connection to Bender

“Lethal Inspection”

Before the show’s Comedy Central run, we didn’t see Bender and Hermes interact one on one much. In just one episode, though, they developed one of the most poignant bonds in all of “Futurama.” Realizing that he doesn't have a backup unit and will one day die, Bender sets out to find the inspector who allowed him off the assembly line. Hermes accompanies Bender in a road trip comedy of sorts. After multiple failed attempts to find Inspector 5, Hermes helps Bender to accept his mortality and live with his flaws. As we see in a bittersweet ending, Hermes was Inspector 5 all along. Years earlier, Hermes decided to give the defective Bender a chance to exist, altering both of their fates in the process.
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