Cold Warriors

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Season 6 episode
Broadcast season 8 episode
Cold Warriors
Cold Warriors infobox.png
Fry's coughing infects the guinea pig with the common cold in the past, marking the start of Fry's science project.
Production number6ACV24
Written byDan Vebber
Directed byCrystal Chesney-Thompson
First air date25 August, 2011
Broadcast numberS08E11
Title referenceThe common cold and the cold warriors
Special guest(s)Buzz Aldrin
Tom Kenny


Season 6
  1. Rebirth
  2. In-A-Gadda-Da-Leela
  3. Attack of the Killer App
  4. Proposition Infinity
  5. The Duh-Vinci Code
  6. Lethal Inspection
  7. The Late Philip J. Fry
  8. That Darn Katz!
  9. A Clockwork Origin
  10. The Prisoner of Benda
  11. Lrrreconcilable Ndndifferences
  12. The Mutants Are Revolting
  13. The Futurama Holiday Spectacular
  14. The Silence of the Clamps
  15. Möbius Dick
  16. Law and Oracle
  17. Benderama
  18. The Tip of the Zoidberg
  19. Ghost in the Machines
  20. Neutopia
  21. Yo Leela Leela
  22. Fry Am the Egg Man
  23. All the Presidents' Heads
  24. Cold Warriors
  25. Overclockwise
  26. Reincarnation
← Season 5Season 7 →

"Cold Warriors" is the one hundred and twelfth episode of Futurama, the twenty-fourth of the sixth production season and the eleventh of the eighth broadcast season. It aired on 25 August, 2011, on Comedy Central. Fry's sneezing reintroduces the common cold to the world of the future, with devastating consequences.


Act I: "What the hell's a common cold?"

Fry catches the common cold during an ice fishing trip, though the rest of the Planet Express crew are unaware of what the disease is as it was eradicated 500 years ago. Professor Farnsworth explains that the common cold virus had survived within Fry while he was frozen for 1000 years and has thus been reintroduced to mankind, which has lost all resistance to the virus. During this time, flashbacks to the year 1988 show Fry taking an ice fishing trip with his father, during which he falls through the ice and catches a cold. Later, egged on by his brother Yancy, he decides to enter a science competition judged by Buzz Aldrin in which the winner's entry will be launched into space in a satellite. His idea is to infect his pet guinea pig with the cold virus and see if can be cured by exposure to cosmic rays. A rival competitor, Josh Gedgie, learns of Fry's entry and decides to create an experiment about the common cold as well.

Act II: "Chicken. Water. Fire."

In the present day, the pathogens of the cold are detected and Planet Express is quarantined. Bender, who is immune to biological illness and forced to take care of the sick crew, becomes exasperated and breaks through the quarantine after being sneezed on by Zoidberg, spreading the virus across Manhattan. Richard Nixon becomes concerned with the rapid spread of the disease and brings in Dr. Ogden Wernstrom to resolve the situation. Wernstrom's solution is to destroy the virus by enclosing Manhattan in plastic wrap, lifting it into space, and hurling it into the Sun.

Act III: "Blow them to baco bits with a well placed warning shot!"

Believing that a vaccine can be created using a sample of the original virus, Farnsworth plans to extract it from Fry by grinding his body into a paste. Fry remembers that the winning science competition entry contained a virus sample. The crew escapes the city and finds the satellite containing the experiment, now encased in ice on Enceladus, with a flashback revealing that Gedgie's project won the competition. As the Professor uses Gedgie's virus sample to create a vaccine, and Manhattan is set back in place and its residents are inoculated to stop the outbreak, Fry has a flashback to the ice fishing trip with his father just after being pulled out of the ice, where Fry's father tells him that he loves him, and explains that he is only so hard on Fry because he wants Fry to grow up strong.


During June 2011, Countdown to Futurama released two items of promotional material for the episode: concept art of Fry's guinea pig on 5 June and part of the storyboard showing Leela engaged in a broom fight on 6 June.

Two promotional pictures for the episode were released by Comedy Central Press.[1]

On 24 August, Comedy Central released a video clip featuring the Planet Express crew being put under quarantine.[2]

Image gallery


"Cold Warriors" was well-received by fans, and many considered it to be one of the better episodes of broadcast season 8.[3] However, it did not do so well on IGN, where it scored only 6.5/10.[4] "Cold Warriors" got a 0.7 rating from adults 18-49 and was viewed by 1.524 million, up about 142,000 views from the previous episode.[5]

Additional info


  • This episode's storyline is similar to that of the comic book "The Cure for the Common Clod". Writer Eric Rogers commented on this via Twitter, writing that "[t]hey are different stories".[6]
  • This is one of four episodes of broadcast season 8 to be broadcast in production order. The other three are "Fry Am the Egg Man", "Overclockwise" and "Reincarnation".
  • If one was to consider each of the movies as one episode rather than four, then "Cold Warriors" could technically be considered the 100th episode, rather than "The Mutants Are Revolting".
    • Alternatively, if the movies are canon, but non-episodic, "Cold Warriors" is the 96th episode.
  • This is the second episode in a row to feature flashbacks in between the episode, with the previous one being "The Tip of the Zoidberg".


  • The title of the episode is a reference to the common cold and the cold warriors.
  • In the Flashback to 1988, Barack Obama is shown working as a pizza delivery guy.
  • Fry calling Josh Gedgie LL Fool J is a reference to American rapper and actor LL Cool J, while Gedgie calling Fry Grandmaster Phlegm is a reference to another rapper, Grandmaster Flash.
  • One of the images Wernstrom shows Nixon's head and Zapp is a Verizon coverage map.
  • The concept of Manhattan being cut from the planet's surface and taken into space is reminiscent of the novel Manhattan Transfer by John E. Stith.
  • One of the science experiments presented for the space launch involves Tang. Tang became popular in the United States due to its association with NASA and the manned spaceflight programs of the 1950s and 1960s.
  • Leela remembers that all ancient satellites were swept up as space junk in 2113 while Facebooking. Furthermore, the title caption mentions Twitter.
  • The guinea pig's training montage is accompanied by the song "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now" by Starship, from the soundtrack of the film Mannequin.
  • At the end, Fry's father tells him he wouldn't want him to freeze (at least so in french dub), an obvious reference to Fry being freezed for 1000 years.
  • Hermes eats a tablet labeled "Airbunk", calling it "a useless remedy created by a schoolteacher." This is a reference to Airborne, a dietary supplement developed by an American school teacher in the early 1990s, which was sued for it's false claim that it can help stop or cure the common cold.



  • Normally, when Bender sleeps, he has his visor down, but, in this episode, he does not.
  • According to Wernstrom's diagram's for Nixon, the cold virus has not spread outside of Manhattan. However, both Morbo and Linda of √2 News have the cold, despite the location of their broadcast having been identified as Los Angeles in "A Big Piece of Garbage".
    • However, more recent episodes are showing their location in New New York.
    • The studio in LA could have closed, causing them to move to New New York.
  • Fry's father's story of when he was shot down over Korea and had to consume his interpreter implies that he fought in the Korean War, but it was established in "Roswell that Ends Well" that he was born in 1948.
    • Then again he once claimed that his ancestors fought commies in the revolutionary war so his historical knowledge is iffy at best.
  • Fry's father states that after having to eat a frozen Neanderthal he "can't stand the taste of early hominid". Neanderthals are a relatively late example of hominid.
  • This episode (along with "Fry and the Slurm Factory" and "The Series Has Landed") shows that Fry went to school, but "The Cryonic Woman" revealed that his parents never let him go to school as it was a waste of taxpayer money (which is why they never called a search and rescue team for him when Fry went missing).
    • He could have been pulled from school by his parents, as "Anthology of Interest II" implied that the last grade Fry completed was the ninth grade (he played video games all throughout his freshman year, except for that one day his eyeballs started to bleed, and drank 100 cans of cola a week until his third heart attack).
  • When younger Fry is sick in bed during a flashback, Mrs. Fry exclaims that a football player was tackled at the 35-yard line. The television shows the player was actually tackled at the 25.
    • On the TV it says 10:30 on the game clock, so it might have switched to recap of the game showing a previous play.


    Fry: Hey, wait a second! I know where you can get some 20th-century cold virus without killing me!
    Professor Farnsworth: Hush, lad. I'm totally in the zone!
    Fry: We just have to find the Nerd Search '88 satellite!
    Professor Farnsworth: [sad] I don't know why I even build these things.


(In alphabetic order)



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