Fear of a Bot Planet

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Season 1 episode
Fear of a Bot Planet
Fear of a Bot Planet.jpg
Fry and Leela with the Robot Elders
Production number1ACV05
Evan Gore
Heather Lombard
Ashley Lenz
Chris Sauve
Peter Avanzino
Carlos Baeza
Title captionFeaturing Gratuitous Alien Nudity
First air date20 April, 1999
Broadcast numberS01E05
Title referenceThe album Fear of a Black Planet by Public Enemy
Opening cartoonPorky Pig and Bugs Bunny in "A Corny Concerto"


Season 1
  1. Space Pilot 3000
  2. The Series Has Landed
  3. I, Roommate
  4. Love's Labours Lost in Space
  5. Fear of a Bot Planet
  6. A Fishful of Dollars
  7. My Three Suns
  8. A Big Piece of Garbage
  9. Hell Is Other Robots
  10. A Flight to Remember
  11. Mars University
  12. When Aliens Attack
  13. Fry and the Slurm Factory
Season 2 →

"Fear of a Bot Planet" is the fifth episode of Futurama and of the first season. It aired 20 April, 1999 on FOX. The Planet Express crew is sent to Chapek 9, a planet filled with human hating robots, Bender immediately likes the place, being tired of his friends opinion of him as nothing more than an item.

The Story

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Act I: "From up here, the entire world can seem insignificant."

Fry and Leela are in the cockpit of the Planet Express Ship, admiring the view. They're gazing out at a blue, ringed planet, which then splatters on their windshield.

Act II: "You humans are so scared of a little robot competition!"

Fry, Leela, Farnsworth, Bender, and Zoidberg are at a Blernsball game. Fry is confused about the game rules, such as the ball attached to a thread. They start talking about great players, and Bender brings up Wireless Joe Jackson from the Robot leagues. Bender drops his cup only to find a robot cleaning up the mess, he becomes enraged due to the fact that robots are used as cleaners and not allowed in the Blernsball game. They argue about whether it's right to exclude literal Blern-hitting machines from the human league. Hermes calls them back to the office for a mission to Chapek 9, "a world where humans are killed on sight." Bender tries to get out of work claiming a Robot holiday, Robanukah. Bender, being asked to actually do something for the first time since working at Planet Express, cries discrimination. They make him go anyway, and he is captured by the native robots.

Fry and Leela disguised like robots

Act III: "Death to humans!!!"

Fry and Leela disguise themselves as robots and venture onto the planet to try and rescue Bender. Fry accidently blows their cover, and they are chased by the planet's Anti Human Patrol. Fry and Leela hide in a movie theatre. The movie, It Came from Planet Earth, is a cheesy horror film about a human who breathes fire and eats robots. After the movie the robots gather for their daily human hunt, where Fry and Leela finally locate Bender - who instead of being held captive is an honored guest. Bender walks to the stage where he declares his intention to destroy all humans.

Fry and Leela in the human hunt

Act IV: "Got you, you murderous flesh piles!"

After advertising his spoken word album, the human hunt begins, which allows Leela and Fry to talk to Bender. Bender tells them he wants to stay, but that they should leave. When they are all three caught, Bender pretends he was capturing them. They are tried for the crime of being human. Leela informs them that she has one eye therefore is not human. But they still charge both of them. The computer judge sentenced them to perform tedious calculations and spot-weld automobiles. When convicted, they are taken before the council of robot elders and they decide Fry and Leela must be killed. The elders try to get Bender to kill them himself. He refuses, and they then turn on all of them. In an unusual display of cunning, Fry helps them escape by scaring the elders, threatening to breathe fire on them. This had worked only because the Robot Elders do not know much about Humans, they are unsure if Fry really can breathe fire. When in the ship, the robots try to capture them by climbing onto each others shoulders and Fry throws them the package. It turns out to be a box of desperately-needed lug nuts, and the robots cheer and break off their pursuit. Back on the ship, they all celebrate Robanukah, which Bender admits is made-up.

Additional Info


  • The names listed in Leela's scoring card are:
  • The Robot Mayor says "that makes 146 thousand unsuccessful hunts in a row," suggesting that the robots have been on Chapek 9 for exactly 400 years if they only do one hunt a day.
    • However this assumes that the years on Chapek 9 are roughly the same length.
  • The episode aired exactly 110 years after Adolf Hitler, an extremely racist man, was born.
  • The sound the robots use to signal the start of the human hunt is the power on chord heard on Apple MacIntosh computers.
  • The episode contains the first reference to Leela being a Human and not an Alien.


  • The title is a reference to the Public Enemy album "Fear of a Black Planet".
  • The planet Chapek 9 is named after Karel Čapek, who is credited with inventing the word "robot".
  • The story is based on a short story by Stanislaw Lem in which a human crash-lands on a planet full of robots and disguises himself as one, only to find out eventually that all the robots are indeed humans in disguise.
  • Hermes shows up in the form of a hologram, much like Princess Leia in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.
  • A movie called "Buffbot the Human Slayer" is advertised on a Chapek 9 theatre marquee, referencing "Buffy the Vampire Slayer".
  • Just after Leela sneezes, a robot points and lets out a shriek. This is a reference to the 1978 version of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers"
  • Bender's line "tote that space barge, lift that space pail" is modified and taken from the song "Ol' Man River" (minus the word "space" of course).
  • "Intruder Alert, Intruder Alert!" and "Get the Humanoid" are both references to the video game Berserk.
  • The scene with the construction robots arranging blocks is a reference to the game Tetris
  • When Fry sees his reflection on Leela's helmet, he says "we look stupid", his distorted reflection looks like Family Guy characters.


    Fry: So this planet is completely uninhabited?
    Bender: [angry] No, its inhabited by robots.
    Fry: Oh! Kind of like a warehouse in inhabited by boxes!

    Bender: Oh, so just because a robot wants to kill humans that makes him a 'Radical?'

    Robot Mayor: Your Honor, I intend to demonstrate beyond 0.5% of a doubt that these humans before us are guilty of the crime of being humans. Come to think of it, I rest my case.
    Judge: Thank you, Prosecutor. I will now consider the evidence. [He begins to consider. A blue bar moves across his screen.]
    Fry: Hey, wait a minute! Isn't anyone gonna defend us?
    Leela: Yeah! I mean, he might not have a case, but I'm genuinely not human.
    Robot Mayor: Quiet, human!

    Bender: Admit it, you all think robots are just machines built by humans to make their lives easier.
    Fry: Well, aren't they?
    Bender: I've never made anyone's life easier, and you know it!


    Fry: Is the puppy mechanical in any way?
    Guard-bot: No! It is the bad kind of puppy!

    Leela: Try to stay with the crowd so no one notices how crummy you look.
    Crummy Robot: Aww, that was uncalled for.

    Fry: Oh my God! We have to go down and rescue him.
    Leela: No we can't! They'll kill us on sight.
    Fry: Well what are we going to do?
    Leela: I don't know, I don't know. It's not an easy decision. If only I had two or three minutes to think about it.
    [Futurama cuts to a commercial break.]

    Fry: It's him. He's OK!
    Bender: Death to humans!
    Fry: Ahh! It's good to hear his voice!
    [Time Lapse.]
    Bender: Many said I was too extreme when I first called for the annihilation of the human species, as well as some of the more cunning monkeys. But after living on Earth I can tell you that I am, if anything, too merciful!
    [The crowd cheers.]
    Fry: My God! He's become evil. [Leela stares at him.] I mean eviler!


  • When Bender is adding butter to his popcorn, a man in the background is missing his eyes.
  • In one scene, the robot elder on the far left changes its eye and teeth color from red to yellow.
  • Leela says there wasn't a Woolworths near to get a robot disguise, but Woolworths no longer exists.
    • Although it is possible that Woolworths could return, or may refer to one of the still existing off-shoots or unrelated namesakes. For example, Woolworth's is Australia's largest supermarket chain.
      • It existed at the time of production.
  • When Leela kicks over the robot offering Fry resin who identifies them as human, he lands with his yellow triangle down (his front, although his head is rotated backwards) when the patrol picks him up, he has flipped.
  • When locked in the cage at the trial, Fry's handcuffs are layered outside the bars when he suggests calling technical support.
  • When the "Robots at Work" Tetris scene is first introduced, we see 4 purple cubes, as in a square. However, after dropping the final piece, we only see three, with the one on the top right corner missing.


(In alphabetic order)

Episode Credits