Bender's Big Score

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Direct-to-DVD film
Bender's Big Score
Bender's Big Score
Directed byDwayne Carey-Hill
Produced byLee Supercinski
Written byKen Keeler
David X. Cohen
Production number5ACV01, 5ACV02,
5ACV03, 5ACV04
Title CaptionIt just won't stay dead!
Title referenceShaft's Big Score
Opening cartoonWhere Fry falls in the tube (1ACV01).
Regular DVD release date(s)(USA) 27 November, 2007
(AU) 5 March, 2008
(EU) 7 April, 2008
Blu-ray (HD) release date(s)TBA
Running time89 minutes
Nomination(s)Annie Awards
Best Home Entertainment Production, 2007 (won)[1]
IMDb profile
The films
  1. Bender's Big Score
  2. The Beast with a Billion Backs
  3. Bender's Game
  4. Into the Wild Green Yonder

Bender's Big Score is the first of the four Direct-to-DVD films, and was released on 27 November, 2007 in North America, 5 March, 2008 in Australia and 7 April, 2008 in Europe. The film is set in 3007 and early 3008, three years after "The Devil's Hands Are Idle Playthings".

The film was recut into four episodes and aired on Comedy Central in March 2008. A teaser for the films was shown at Comic-Con 2007 as part of the "Futurama Returns" reading.

The film was produced in 1080p high definition, but has yet to be announced for a release in this format.

Plot outline

Act I: 5ACV01

Main article: Bender's Big Score Part 1

The film is introduced with a cold open and Hermes introducing everyone by their full name and title. But as he introduces Farnsworth, Farnsworth fires everyone because the delivery network cancelled their license two years ago. However, the phone rings, and he is soon told that the people who cancelled their license were themselves fired for incompetence and brutally beaten; some died from their injuries and were ground into a fine pink powder. The crew throw a party to celebrate their return, but as Hermes shows off his moves in limbo, his head is cut off by a falling sabre, his body crushed under the Planet Express Ship. The crew can do nothing but watch in silent horror.

The title sequence starts, only this time with a special extended theme and introductions of each character, but with the same familiar events in the sequence.

Act II

At the Head Museum, Hermes is put in a temporary head jar by Lars, the jar feeder at the Head Museum, while Lars flirts with Leela, making Fry jealous. When LaBarbara and Dwight enter to find Hermes in a jar and learn that his body won't be fixed for at least a week, LaBarbara immediately goes out to find a new husband.

The crew lounges on the Nude Beach Planet.

While making a delivery to the Nude Beach Planet, on which the entire crew must remove every aspect of clothing from their bodies, Leela notices that Fry has a tattoo of Bender on his butt cheek, which even Fry is surprised to find. Later, Bender is approached by the nude alien Nudar, along with two other associates, to sign a petition and to give them his email address, managing to get most of Planet Express crew to sign up.

Back on Earth, Leela is dealing with a lot of spam. Similarly, Amy is also getting spammed, and manages to order some anti-depressant pills. Bender is keen on the fact that he can Get Rich Watching Porn, but ignores when his system tells him to perform a virus scan, and is immediately infected with a virus. Dr. Zoidberg also finds himself victim to a Nigerian scam.

When Farnsworth finds out about the scams, he decides to teach the crew how to spot scams on the Internet, but he too becomes a victim as well. Despite warnings from the rest of the crew, who now know better, he signs a form on the site. Mere seconds later, the trio of nude aliens from the Nude Beach Planet (still completely nude, as they are nudists) arrive and inform him that they now own the company, presenting a contract signed by the Professor. Bender, under the influence of the virus, addresses them as his masters.


Planet Express is turned into the base of operations for the nudists' scams. Later, Lars returns to bring Hermes his permanent jar, saying that the museum has also been scammed and that the repairs on his body are delayed. He then asks Leela out, which again upsets Fry. Fry has always loved Leela and is confident they would end up together some day, but the only thing that puts Leela off about Fry is his immaturity, which consistently dashes his hopes of ever being with her.

While searching for information around the building, the scammers sense a large amount around Fry, which is revealed to be coming from the tattoo of Bender on his ass. As the crew examines the tattoo, they discover a binary code on the pupil of the tattoo's eye. As Bender reads the code aloud, the Galactic Entity hears it and sends back a time sphere, the key to time travel.

As the scammers debate what they can do with the time sphere, Nibbler reveals himself and intervenes, shocking everyone with his ability to speak. Nibbler warns them about the consequences of using it, saying that it could tear the universe assunder; though they acknowledge this risk, they still intend to use it. The Nibblonians launch an attack on the scammers with their kitten-class ships. However, they are defeated as the scammers knock them away with folding chairs. Nibbler laments as the universe is now doomed.

Act IV: 5ACV02

Main article: Bender's Big Score Part 2

Nudar decides to test the powers of the time sphere; Farnsworth objects, because time travel invariably creates a paradox, but Nibbler informs them that it is a paradox-correcting time code, which means everything will work out all right—except if the universe is destroyed, after which he objects as well. Nudar travels back to one day prior and returns with a duplicate of himself; he met himself the other day, and apparently made out with himself. Suddenly the Smell-O-Scope falls upon the new duplicate of Nudar and kills him, thus resolving the paradox. Around this time, Hermes learns LaBarbara has hooked up with Barbados Slim.

A problem occurs with the scammers' plans to steal all things of value in Earth's history as the time sphere can only get them back to the past, not forward into the future—they may be able to steal things, but they would be dead before they could reap the benefits. Bender informs them that he can last for thousands of years, so he can travel back in time, steal the stuff, then wait in the cavern beneath the building, and emerge as if he were gone for hardly a second. And so his stealing of Earth's past values begins. As a matter of interest, while fleeing from Swedish police in 2308 after stealing a Nobel Peace Price from the Sweedledome, Bender's ship and its decoys destroy the original New York (1ACV01).

Farnsworth wants to sell off his doomsday devices in order to make money, but he won't sell his favorite, the Spheroboom, which he places in a satchel he handcuffs around his wrist. The scammers order Bender to get it, replacing the real satchel with an empty one. Bender does this by sawing off the Professor's hand. When Hermes sees how well Zoidberg sewed the professor's hand back on, he asks if he could do the same for him and his body. Hermes asks Bender to go back in time and get an undamaged body from the past; Bender, curiously, does not object. Unfortunately, after they get the body, Zoidberg puts Hermes' head on backwards.

Act V

Fry escapes to January 1, 2000.

The Professor has invited the Globetrotters to assist in figuring out how paradox-free time travel is possible, and their calculus confirms it is. The reason is due to the "doom field" in the equation, which means that a duplicate created from a time travel is always doomed to die. This essentially means that, although no paradoxes are created, the universe balances itself out by eventually destroying duplicated matter. This also means that Hermes' new body from the neck down is doomed as well, but Hermes says he only needs the body long enough to win LaBarbara back.

As Lars and Leela go out on a series of dates, Bender eventually manages to steal everything the scammers wanted. However, now that the scammers are rich, they suddenly care if the universe gets destroyed. They intend to delete the code from Bender and vaporise Fry—rather than just removing the tattoo—in case he memorized the code. Fed up with the scammers, and jealous of Lars, Fry escapes by using a mirror to read the code off of his tattoo. He travels back to January 1, 2000, 12:30 AM, 30 minutes after he was frozen, and winding up in Applied Cryogenics. Bender is ordered to travel back a few moments before he arrives to be safe and terminate him (mimicking "The Terminator").

Act VI

Bender arrives at 12:28 a.m. in the cryogenics lab, but after drinking the beer Fry left before he was frozen, Bender (for the first time in his life) needs to go to the bathroom. He goes back 19 seconds in time and creates a time-paradox duplicate of himself to wait for Fry to come while he goes to the bathroom, unaware that the duplicate is doomed.

Before Fry arrives, another copy of Bender arrives in a tuxedo and says that he is Bender from "way at the end," and he needs to put the Bender tattoo on Fry's ass in the first place. He tattoos the time code on the backside of the Fry duplicate that is within the cryogenic tube, thus revealing how he got the tattoo in the first place. Fry arrives, and the duplicate Bender threatens to kill him, but he goes through a moral crisis and ultimately enters his Automatic Destruct Sequence due to an internal error in programming caused by the tension. Before he can explode, Fry kicks the duplicate into the freezer and sets it for 1 million years.

The original Bender in the bathroom leaves, and spots Fry waiting for the elevator. He tries to catch up, but he loses him. He considers commiting suicide in what he initially believes to be a suicide booth, only to stop after realizing it's actually a telephone booth. After giving up on suicide, he begins his hunt for Fry. During the 2000 election, he attacks Al Gore's manager, named Philip Joshua Fry, in Florida, and winds up destroying Gore's ballots, resulting in a victory for Bush. (This also explains the in real-life voting controversy in Florida during the 2000 presidential election.) After 12 years, he finally catches up to Fry on the docks of New York City. Fry has grown a long beard and is walking off a boat, but it's clearly him (identified by a brief shot of the tattoo). Bender calls for a cab (driven by Al Gore) and starts a taxi chase, but his taxi gets into an accident, and Bender is hurdled to Panucci's Pizza.

Bender lands in front of Pannuci's (near Seymour). While he at first thinks he's lost Fry, he spots him in the window above the restaurant, and shoots into the window, destroying much of the building (and fast-fossilizing Seymour in the process). It collapses, and Bender is suddenly overcome with remorse over killing his best friend.

Act VII: 5ACV03

Main article: Bender's Big Score Part 3

Bender walks up from the basement in the Planet Express hangar, where he announces the success of his mission to the scammers, who delete the virus and erase the time code from his memory. In Central Park, the crew holds a memorial for Fry. Bender arrives at the scene and explains it was he who killed him, though the crew understands that it wasn't really his fault. Fry then suddenly reappears out of nowhere, which greatly relieves Bender. Fry explains how he is where he is...

At 1:00 AM on January 1, 2000, Fry wanted some pizza but realized he had no money from that era. Knowing where he could find free pizza, he went back to Applied Cryogenics, but since the pizza was cold, he traveled back an hour to eat it while it was still hot, where he saw himself kicking Bender into the freezer, and thus a duplicate is made. The duplicate Fry left and the original remained. Fry then realized that his frozen self has a lot of old money, but since his pants were pulled down due to the tattooing of his buttocks, he touched his own butt while reaching for his wallet. In his disgust, he tripped and fell into the tube with his frozen self. The original frozen Fry walked out of the tube on December 31, 2999, the other Fry froze himself for another 7.95 years. He explains that he just came back to the park from the Cryogenics Lab at that moment. Lars, who is here with Leela, leaves as Farnsworth explains to Bender that the Fry he killed was doomed anyway, being a time duplicate.

Fry learns that his duplicate lived for 12 years before Bender killed him, so Fry wonders what his life was like. While the crew members may never know, a series of flashbacks are presented to the viewer. In a flashback, time-duplicate Fry returns to Panucci's, but instead of asking for food, he asks if he can rent the storage room upstairs. Mr. Panucci gives his permission and Fry begins living there. He began living life doing all the things he otherwise couldn't have done, but it is clear that he still misses Leela.


Lars proposes to Leela.

In 2003, the duplicate Fry resolves to stop living in the past (his past, anyway, as it was in the future) and move on with his life. While watching the news, Fry learns of a rare horned female narwhal named Leelu at the aquarium, who is deeply depressed. Fry decides that this is his calling, and he applies for a job at the aquarium as Leelu's caretaker.

Back in 3007, Nibbler removes the time code from Fry's ass. Since they are all unemployed now because the scammers bought the entire New New York, and the city is being turned into a panda-hunting reserve, the Planet Express crew are all without homes. On Xmas Eve, they are all living in an alley, and lament their misfortunes in a song. Robot Santa appears and attacks them while Leela, who is more concerned with her relationship with Lars than everyone else's problems, explains that he has proposed in the process.

Act IX

Back in the past, Fry is getting along with the narwhal, Leelu. He teaches her to eat and carries on a friendly relationship with her. But in 2010, he is informed that she must be sent back into the wild. Fry reluctantly agrees, but then later decides to follow the narwhal and capture her back. He spends the next two years at the North Pole, where they reunite.

In the future, the wedding between Leela and Lars begins. With his body back (albeit backwards), Hermes wins back LaBarbara back from Barbados Slim. Fry is the only one displeased about the wedding, who tries to sabotage it by replacing the pen to sign the wedding license with an empty one. When Leela finds out that the pen isn't working, Lars nonchalantly pulls one from his pocket. As they are replacing the pen, they accidentally stick it in Hermes' eye as he is cleaning his glasses. He slips over a rope, and the chandelier falls down, beheading him once more and destroying his time-paradox duplicate body. LaBarbara instantly leaves Hermes again. The Professor exclaims that this was bound to happen, because the body was a time duplicate. When Lars hears this, he becomes agitated and calls off the wedding and leaves Leela at the altar. Fry enjoys a split second of pleasure before he sees Leela crying her eye out.

Act X: 5ACV04

Main article: Bender's Big Score Part 4

President Nixon reveals that he is about to close a deal to buy back Earth. Unfortunately, he fell for another obvious scam, and Earth loses its final bit of money. The populace is forced to evacuate the planet. Ships at South Street Spaceport carry people to different planets in the solar system, with the Planet Express Ship bound for Neptune.

Back in the past again, Fry has Leelu placed in a tank on the ship. Leelu seems forlorn and distraught and won't eat or play with Fry. Fry then sees a male narwhal swimming outside the ship (this one with an orange-colored skin) and thinks that he is upsetting her, so he steers her away from him.

On Neptune, after a Yeti incident, the Earthicans encounter Robot Santa, who is too depressed for murder and mayhem, as the scammers have also scammed him. But Leela, having become hardened by her failed relationship with Lars, decides it is time to fight back.

Act XI

The Earthican fleet attacks.

A strategy is proposed, but it is revealed that the scammers have used the money to build several remote-controlled solid gold Death Stars. Robot Santa reminds them that he still has elves to build weapons, so he gets together with his friends the Kwanzaa-bot and the Chanukah Zombie. Through song, their weapons are soon built, and they are ready to attack, being led by Zapp Brannigan, whose plan is to send in a brigade of children first to buy them a few seconds. As they approach Earth, one of the Death Stars shoots down the Nimbus (though the entire crew manages to survive). Leela takes command of the fleet, but is soon overwhelmed by the complexity of directing so many ships. Hermes uses his vast knowledge of bureaucracy and organization to control the entire battle smoothly (with the help from the Professor, who wires his head into the mainframe). Soon the battle is won, and Hermes wins LaBarbara back for good. But the scammers have one final trick up their sleeves—they reveal the doomsday device's bag that they stole from the Professor. Nudar gives them 30 seconds to decide on an ultimatum: surrender or be destroyed.


Bender, having revealed that he was the one who cut off the Professor's hand with an extremely dull saw, makes a modest apology to the crew for what he has done. But to their surprise, this is a ploy to distract the scammers as he also reveals that he has the bag with the actual doomsday device, and that the scammers have been scammed. They fire off the device and destroy the scammers' ship. Bender explains that this was planned as he was stealing the device, and he stole the device for himself to use later as soon as he was released from the scammers' control.

At the New Year's Eve celebration, Bender is awarded the Dirty Double Cross, Earth's highest honor in swindling, for saving the world. Lars comes and gives Hermes' his body back, fully repaired. Leela is still heartbroken about the incident at the wedding, and that Lars tries to avoid contact with her. Fry, unable to see Leela unhappy any longer, tells her to meet him at Applied Cryogenics.

In 2012, Fry realizes that Leelu is actually in love with the male narwhal, and decides to set her free, in his words; "I want what makes you happy, not what makes me happy."

Back in real time, Fry secretly invites Lars as well, as he, like his duplicate self, has decided he wants what makes Leela happy, unknowingly coining his duplicate's phrase. But as Lars is trying to explain to them both why he and Leela simply cannot be together, Nudar enters, having survived the explosion thanks to a doomproof platinum vest (the closest thing to clothing he is seen to wear). He says he wants the time code, but Fry and Leela stress that Nibbler removed it from him. However, Nudar insists that Lars has it. Nudar threatens to kill Leela for the code, but Lars instead goes to the tube with the Bender duplicate in it (the one counting down the auto-destruct sequence) and opens it, dragging Nudar onto Bender with himself. Bender explodes, killing himself, Nudar and Lars. In her horror and grief, Leela rushes to Lars' smoldering body, only to see that he has the same tattoo on his backside as Fry...

Back in 2012, Fry is entering his home above Panucci's when Bender comes around and destroys it. The initial blast doesn't kill the duplicate Fry like Bender believed, but Fry's hair is burnt off, his beard shortened, his skin darkened, and his larynx damaged; he sees himself in the mirror with his new appearance and deeper voice and realizes that he is Lars. He rushes to the Applied Cryogenics lab, and gets in a tube (containing his old girlfriend Michelle), setting it for 990 years. Waking up in 3002, he gets employed at the head museum.

At Lars' funeral, Lars in a video will tells the crew the whole story of what happened while he was in the past, and explains that he waited for the day Leela would arrive. When he saw Hermes' body destroyed at the wedding, he realized that as a time paradox duplicate, he himself was doomed, and would not put Leela through having to deal with his death. Fry says that he was a good man; Leela agrees, and kisses Fry on the cheek. Everyone is reminded that in order for any of this to make sense, someone must travel back in time for one last time to tattoo Fry's backside in the first place, so Bender volunteers, peeling the tattoo off of Lars' corpse and going back in time.

Back at Planet Express, Bender comes up from the basement and says that he has done the job. He then says that he met all his own copies down in the basement, and told them to stick around instead of come up when they were logically supposed to. This creates an extreme amount of duplicates. Nibbler fears the worst, and using an as-yet unseen Nibblonian ability, consumes himself; presumably, the high-density compression of his digestive tract allows him to teleport to an unknown dimension. As each duplicate explodes one after the other, a massive rift in time and space appears before them. Bender sees this and ends the film with, "Well, we're boned."


The production of the films began in early 2006, when the writing team were assembled and started to conduct the writing for the films.[2]

By June, 2007, the voice acting of the films was finished.[3]

Some parts of the plot for Bender's Big Score were actually old ideas lying around from during the original run, which had never made into airing, such as the Nude Beach Planet.[2]


Bender's Big Score was released on 27 November, 2007 in North America, and later in March and April in 2008 in Australia and Europe, respectively.

Generally, the film was well received, and was nominated and won the Annie Award for "Best Home Entertainment Production".[1] Dan Iverson from IGN scored it a 8 out of 10, and attributed it to the film's ability to live up to the legacy of the show during its original run, but also criticised heavy Fry-Leela relationship subplot.[4] In addition, he praised the guest star performances of Mark Hamill and Coolio as the Chanukah Zombie and Kwanzaa-bot, respectively, during the secondary musical performance, but also felt that the two musical stages were not at the same level as the Bureaucrat Song in "How Hermes Requisitioned His Groove Back".[4]

On UGN, Brooke Tarnoff also felt that the film lived up to the quality level of the original run, but praised the musical numbers as "hilarious" and gave the film an "A" rating.[5]

As of June, 2009, the film has sold 808,165 copies with a income of $14,675,554,[6] and sold 222,036 copies during its first week,[6] making it the best selling of the four films, with The Beast with a Billion Backs as the runner up with little more than a quarter of Bender's Big Score's sales; 226,575.[7]

However, the DVD sales may not be an obvious remark as to the film's quality over the others, but rather an attempt by the fans of Futurama to convince the production companies and networks willing to consider it, here being 20th Century Fox and Comedy Central as the serious parties, whom the fans wanted to send a justification for renewing the show as a TV season. The mere fact that Bender's Big Score sold better in its first week than any of the two last films did in total could indicate people's initial disappointment with the purchase of the film and that they were not convinced enough to purchase the follow up, The Beast with a Billion Backs.


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When Part 1 of this film was shown on Sky3/Pick TV, the following cuts were made.

  • The bit where Bender is sitting on the couch looking at his e-mails and saying "Porn, porn, free porn, get rich watching porn? Huh, I find that rather hard to believe." is cut.
  • The West Johnson Porniversity website and the bit where Bender says "Hmm. Scientists at West Johnson Porniversity need test subjects to rate top quality roborotica. Ooh! Top quality." is cut.
  • The "Scan for Virus?" alert and the bit where Bender says "Warning: Peform Virus Scan? Pfft! I'm waiting for porn over here!" then him clicking on the no button and saying "Ooh yeah! Come on, baby!" then him coughing and downloading the obedience virus is cut.

Also when Part 3 is shown on Sky3/Pick TV, the bit where Nudar says "Heh heh! You've got no code, no porn, and you're ugly! Let's dance!" and the aliens dancing and Bender spitting out the head cleaner and the head cleaner going onto Nudar's belly is cut.

Additional Info


See Miscellany of Bender's Big Score for trivia, quotes, etc.


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(In alphabetic order)




Teaser from "Futurama Returns"

Film Credits


The DVD contains the following:


  • The release with Best Buy in region 1 included an animatic teaser for the upcoming film, The Beast with a Billion Backs.
    • Region 2 discs include the same teaser regardless of retailer.
  • The German version is missing the holography cover albeit the German rental version was issued with the holography cover.


  1. ^ a b Legacy: 35th Annual Annie Award Nominees and Winners (2007). (Annie Awards.) Retrieved on 21 April 2009.
  2. ^ a b Commentary for Bender's Big Score on the DVD.
  3. ^ Goldman, Eric (03 July 2007). "Exclusive: Futurama Actress Gives Update". IGN. Retrieved on 21 April 2009.
  4. ^ a b Iverson, Dan (19 November 2007). "Futurama: Bender's Big Score Review". IGN. Retrieved on 21 April 2009.
  5. ^ Tarnoff, Brooke. "Futurama : Bender's Big Score Review". UGN. Retrieved on 21 April 2009.
  6. ^ a b Futurama - Bender's Big Score - DVD Sales. (The Numbers.) Retrieved on 27 June 2009.
  7. ^ Futurama - The Beast with a Billion Backs - DVD Sales. (The Numbers.) Retrieved on 27 June 2009.

External links