A Bicyclops Built for Two
"A Bicyclops Built for Two" is the ninth episode in the second season of the American animated television series Futurama. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on March 19, 2000.
|"A Bicyclops Built for Two"|
|Episode no.||Season 2
|Directed by||Susan Dietter|
|Written by||Eric Kaplan|
|Original air date||March 19, 2000|
|Opening caption||"This Episode Has Been Modified To Fit Your Primitive Screen"|
|Opening cartoon||"Hollywood Capers" (1935)|
The Professor bears good news to the Planet Express crew: several years ago he tried to log onto AOL, and it has finally connected. He sends the crew into the Internet for fun. While playing the video game Death Factory III, Leela meets another cyclops, but Fry blasts his virtual form before she can find out who he is and where he comes from. The crew is sent on a mission to deliver popcorn to Cineplex 14. However, the other cyclops recorded her screen name beforehand and sends her a video message. Leela abandons the delivery, and heads off to the coordinates provided.
The cyclops introduces himself as Alcazar, sole survivor of the destruction of the planet Cyclopia. He shows Leela some of the capital city's landmarks, including the sacred Forbidden Valley, before bringing her to the castle where he lives. He says Cyclopia was destroyed by a missile launched by the blind mole people of Subterra 3. Before the destruction, Cyclopia's smartest scientist sent away a baby who Leela concludes must have been her. Alcazar was employed as a pool cleaner and was spared from the chaos while fishing out a dead possum. Leela decides it is her duty to help rebuild the Cyclopian civilization, primarily by procreating with Alcazar. While Bender loots everything of value, Fry, feeling suspicious of Alcazar, tries to investigate the Forbidden Valley, only to stumble into a trap door leading to a dungeon. Now that Leela is committed to Alcazar for the good of their race, he becomes abusive to her, demanding she carry out menial work and humiliating her in front of his friends. Fry tries to convince Leela to dump Alcazar; he almost persuades her when Alcazar proposes marriage. Flattered, Leela accepts.
Leela refuses Fry's entreaties to let him out of the dungeon. Instead he escapes, and he and Bender break into the Forbidden Valley. They discover four other castles, identical except that the decorations depict different species. They return and interrupt Leela's wedding, bringing with them four women, each of a different species, and each scheduled to be married to Alcazar on the same day as Leela. Alcazar, flustered, involuntarily reveals his true nature as a shape-shifting, cricket-like alien. After the women beat him into submission, he explains that he played with their emotions in order to sell viewings of their sexual relations to voyeurs, and that he had to stage all the weddings on one day because tuxedos that change shape are expensive to rent. Leela leaves with the rest of the Planet Express crew. The Professor tells Leela she will have plenty of years to search for her true home while paying for the popcorn shipment she destroyed, but Leela disconsolately wonders "How many planets could there be?" as she looks out at a vast, starry space.
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The new look that Leela takes on to please "Al" parodies voice actor Katey Sagal's role as Peggy Bundy (with husband Al) on Married... with Children. The scene also lampoons the show's dysfunctional family sitcom style and marriage/sex related jokes.
In the beginning of the episode, when Bender opens the portal to the Internet, Fry's exclamation of "My God...it's full of ads!" is a reference to Dave Bowman's line "My God...it's full of stars!" in the novel 2001: A Space Odyssey and the film 2010. As the portal opens, the characteristic theme "Also Sprach Zarathustra" from 2001: A Space Odyssey plays.
Alcazar's story of Cyclopia also shadows that of Superman, whose father sent him in an experimental vessel to travel through hyperspace when it was discovered a nuclear reaction was building inside Krypton, soon destroying the entire planet.
The name Cineplex 14 is a spoof of the Canadian company Cineplex Entertainment. When the popcorn is thrown into the sun, it makes a shape of a galaxy, the logo of Galaxy Cinemas, one of the companies that merged to make Cineplex Entertainment.
Color stylist Bari Kumar won an Emmy award for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation for this episode in 2000. Susie Dietter was nominated for an Annie Award in 2000 for "Outstanding Individual Achievement for Directing in an Animated Television Production" for this episode; she lost to Brian Sheesley for the Futurama episode "Why Must I Be a Crustacean in Love?". In Doug Pratt's DVD, Pratt noted that this episode was his favorite of the second season. In particular, he notes that the virtual reality sequence at the beginning was very witty and the overall plot was entertaining. The episode was given an A rating by The A.V. Club.
- Ellis, Rick (2000-08-26). "2000 Creative Emmy Award Winners". All Your TV. Retrieved 2007-06-28.
- Azrai, Ahmad (2004-10-31). "Farewell to the funny future". Asia Africa Intelligence Wire. Archived from the original on 2 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-10.
- "28th Annual Annie Award Nominees and Winners". International Animated Film Society. 2000. Archived from the original on 1 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-06-28.
- Pratt, Douglas. Doug Pratt's DVD: Movies, Television, Music, Art, Adult, and More!. p. 474.
- "Futurama: "Raging Bender"/ "A Bicylops Built For Two"". 2015-02-05. Retrieved 2016-12-22.
- "PEOPLE'S CHOICE.(Brief Article)(Statistical Data Included)". Broadcasting & Cable. Reed Business Information. 2000-03-27. Retrieved 2009-03-07.