Futurama: The Beast With A Billion Backs (Fox, 2008) D: Peter Avanzino, w/ Billy West, Katey Sagal. Rating: NNNN; DVD package: NNNN
As epic science fiction adventures go, this blows most of the live-action entries out of the water. We’ve got lovelorn loser Fry stumbling into another universe and bringing back sentient tentacles hellbent on world domination through universal love, aliens whose life cycle includes being a cluster of flies, the profoundly wacky Deathball and ever-disgruntled robot Bender joining a secret society dedicated to the extermination of all humans.
It’s all about the contemporary dating scene.
It’s also funnier than most of the live-action comedies out there, but, then, Futurama usually is.
Most of the lavish extras are about the creators making rude noises and cracking themselves up. Beyond that, there are some excellent docs and remarks on their process. You’ll also hear the word “hentai,” a particular form of Japanese erotica the makers claim as inspiration for the show. Check out the The Dream Of The Fisherman’s Wife in the Wikipedia entry on hentai. It’ll add a whole new dimension to your viewing pleasure.
EXTRAS Producer, director, actors, Matt Groening commentary; bonus episode from video game with commentary; storyboard animatic; deleted scenes; actor David Cross doc; bloopers; 3-D models with animator discussion; Deathball doc. Full-frame. English, French, Spanish subtitles.