Clumpy wrote:Y'know, frankly I'm torn. On one hand I thought the movies were slower and more uncreative (I'll never sit through TBWABB again), so I'm looking forward to a return to the episode format, but I probably won't watch more than a couple of episodes for curiosity if they don't bring back the original cast.
Honestly Futurama confounds me. On one hand it makes stabs at continuity and cohesion, and handles some emotional moments very well while still immediately following them with an irreverent joke, but the ubersilliness of the world and callousness of the characters makes it difficult to get into as much as Groening's sister show in its heyday.
There's a lot of truth in this. The problem, if you wanna call it that, I think, is that the writing staff of Futurama is relatively independent, in that any of about fifteen writers will write an episode according to his/her tastes and regard for continuity etc (for example, Ken Keeler, who I think wrote the BWABB, and BBS, while an awesome writer, doesn't give two shits about continuity, and finds it hard to understand that an audience can invest itself even in cartoon characters). That episode of course goes through an extensive collective process before you get a final script, but the individual writers still influence how the episode will go. Part of the reason Simpsons declined so in quality I think is because Matt Groening is very easy to work with, in so far that he won't stick to his guns very much when it comes to what his initial vision for the show was. For example, he opposed with a fury the episode of the Simpsons where Jay Sherman from The Critic shows up, with the reasoning that if you do a cross-over with another show, the show becomes less real, and he never wanted the Simpsons to be cartoon, which is why Homer really gets hurt when he falls down the cliff, he can't bounce and then get back up again, he needs to be wheeled out to an ambulance. Now, I'm not entirely sure exactly what kinds of power Groening has, even though he created the show, but none the less he allowed it to be made. This is the case with a whole bunch of stuff that slowly turned the show into a silly, occasionally funny over-the-top sitcom, and not the family-centred semi-realistic top quality comedy it once was. Futurama so far seems to have been a bit more consistent in this respect, but then the show was created from the get-go by both Groening and David X Cohen, who seems to know what they want.
/lots of speculation and Simpsons-nerd trivia put to 'good' use.