After seven years in cryogenic suspended animation—well, with a few wake-up breaks for TV movies—Futurama comes back to life tonight as a weekly animated series on Comedy Central with a one-hour, two-episode premiere. And appropriately enough, the comedy about the future crew of a Planet Express delivery ship comes back from the dead with a story about its characters—being revived from the dead, or at least from a case of severe dismemberment.
While I’ve never found Futurama to have the depth of character to put it among the top tier of animated comedies (like The Simpsons or King of the Hill), it’s consistently funny, as much for its running jokes and occasional characters (Kwanzaabot, The Hypnotoad) as for its central cast. At its best, it’s also—though I don’t think it gets enough attention for this—a pretty good science-fiction show, and the first return episode centers on a fairly cool story of duplicated consciousness that wouldn’t be out of place on a drama like Caprica.
While you wait, open a can of Slurm and enjoy the above Q&A with creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen.