Episode Title: “Fry Am the Egg Man”
Writer: Michael Rowe
Director: Dwayne Carey-Hill
In the world of “Futurama,” it has to be asked: Is Philip J. Fry (Billy West) the most compassionate man alive? Or is he simply the biggest moron in the universe?
Thanks to Leela’s (Katey Sagal) sudden obsession that the crew should exclusively eat organic foods, Fry learns that the ridiculously expensive eggs that Leela has been buying were already fertilized. And Fry refuses to kill a living creature before it’s born. Instead, he promises to let it hatch… so that he can eat it later.
Thus Fry brings the egg with him everywhere and he even builds a nest for it before accidentally destroying the outer shell. Whatever Fry did to take care of the egg seems to have worked, as a hideous creature emerges from the remains of the shell and it has dangerous acidic body fluids. The rest of the crew is smart enough to realize that this means trouble, but Fry is instantly smitten with his new pet and he doesn’t even mind that the creature’s licks of affection burn the skin on his face.
Mr. Peppy — as Fry dubs it — soon develops cat and dog-like personality traits; which show us that Fry’s adoration isn’t just a one way street. Unfortunately, Mr. Peppy causes bodily harm even when he’s being friendly because… let’s face it, he’s just an increasingly huge alien creature that wasn’t meant to be anybody’s pet. It also marks a recurrence of Fry’s inability to tell distinguish between aggression and affection.
Earlier this season, Fry was enamored with Clamps despite his extremely threatening behavior. At the time, the joke was that Bender was such a bad friend that Clamps was almost an improvement. But that may just be the nature of friendship in the future.
Fry gets another proverbial kick in the balls late in the episode, when Leela introduces him as her “platonic” friend. I have to admit, that was a big “WTF?!” moment for me as I wondered if I missed an episode where Fry and Leela broke off their romance or if this was shown out of order from an episode in which that happened. Instead, I think that Leela was just willing to toss aside her relationship with Fry — in front of him, no less! — for a quick fling.
Welcome to the future of love.
It’s hard not to get hung up on that betrayal after the series made such a big deal out of Fry’s long courtship of Leela. Some of “Futurama’s” most epic episodes have hinged upon the strong connection between Fry and Leela. This incident may have been meant as a joke. And to be fair to Leela, she never actually goes through with any onscreen cheating with her new paramour. But if that was meant to be funny, it failed.
Getting back to the main plot, Mr. Peppy is getting bigger and more dangerous to the point where even Fry seems to realize that they can’t keep him around. The crew also learns that Mr. Peppy is apparently the last of the Bone Vampires from Doohan VI — which is essentially Scotland if it took up an entire planet. After releasing Mr. Peppy into the wild to reproduce asexually and replenish his species, the crew meets Leela’s latest suitor, Angus McZongo… and several other Doohanians also named Angus.
The Doohanians are initially horrified to learn that the crew brought a Bone Vampire back to their planet, but Fry makes an impassioned plea that Mr. Peppy is a vegetarian and he wins a reprieve for his former pet. But it only lasts until dozens of boneless sheep start showing up and Mr. Peppy apparently attacks Leela as well. Once again declaring his love for Leela, Fry sadly resolves to put down his beloved Mr. Peppy.
A few Scooby-Dooish hijinks ensue — which Amy (Lauren Tom) even calls out by name! — but a compromise is worked out between the Doohanians and Mr. Peppy, giving Fry a happy ending. And Fry’s feelings for his pet are vindicated.
“Fry Am the Egg Man” definitely has its moments, but on the whole the episode was just slightly above average. I’ve often mentioned that an average episode of “Futurama” is still better than almost anything else. I just hope that the series’ writers have grander ambitions.
Crave Online Rating: 7 out of 10.