Season 4 Episode 1

Roswell That Ends Well

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Dec 09, 2001 on Comedy Central



  • Trivia

    • Fry drives Enos out to the abandoned shack while the scientists' backs are turned, and his body was vaporized in the atomic blast. There would have been no way for them to know Enos was there or killed in the blast in order to inform Mildred.

    • Fry's grandpa's name is Enos, which, among other things, was the name of the second chimp NASA sent into space, and the first to be put into orbit around earth.

    • At the beginning of the episode Fry says that if the supernova were anything like his old Chevy Nova, then it would light up the night sky. But in the first episode, "Space Pilot 3000" Fry never had a car, and instead rode a bike. He also says in a few other episodes that he never drove.

    • At the end of the episode when Bender falls out of the ship, Zoidberg is seen covering up the autopsy hole, but there is no hole, he's just covering his front torso.


    • In this episode, Bender's head becomes the oldest 'living' robot, though his body is still only a few years old.

    • In the scene where Leela and Professor Farnsworth are looking for a microwave, Proffesor Farnsworth is wearing a Zoot suit, which is from the late 30's and early 40's. Also, he's an extremely old man, and it would have been a little odd to see a old man in a pimp suit, especially with Leela acting as his wife, who is obviously a lot younger, wearing her cute 18 year old schoolgirl outfit.

    • Just to cover their bases, the U.S. flag has 48 stars on it.

    • Bender's head was buried in the desert for 1000 years, but when Fry digs him up he shows no ill effects from going without alcohol for that time. Previously Bender developed his 5 o'clock rust and pseudo-intoxicated behaviour after only a day or two without drinking. Also, since alcohol charges his fuel cell shouldn't he have run out of power? Even modern rechargable batteries can lose their charge if not used for a long period of time (several years).

    • The missile that the ship fires at the base has "Roswell That Ends Well" written on it with a little sketch of Dr. Zoidberg on the side.

    • The Roswell Daily Record headlines are "Flying Saucer Captured," and "Crackpot Photographs Truman Again."

    • Some of the stores seen in the past include "Fedoras For Boys," "Hard Croon Cafe" and "Gil's Televisual Radios."

    • If you can zoom or squint really good, you can see Warner Brothers' Bosco cartoon on the small black and white television that Fry and Enos pass on the way to the malt diner.

    • On the table in the diner, there's a Star Trek insignia in the glossy table pattern.

    • In the diner, there are little drawings next to the telephone. One of them is a fighter plane shooting down a UFO, and another one is of the Empire State Building.

    • Although it's stated that Fry is supposed to be his own paternal grandfather (ie his father's father), both Enos and Fry share many physical similarities, including hair colour and style elements, with Fry's mother.

    • After President Truman told the General to send the UFO components and Dr. Zoidberg to Area 51 for study, one of them said that they were filming the fake moon-landing there. First of all, this implies that the U.S. Government would have held onto the footage for 22 years before releasing it. Also, Truman said, "Then invent NASA and tell them to get off their fannies!" This episode is set in 1947, but NASA wasn't created until October 1, 1958.

      RESPONSE: This is a joke relating to the fact that many people believe the lunar landing was faked, and it is still widely disputed.

    • Even though we know now that Fry fathered his Father and that Fry is his own Grandfather, an alternate explanation for why Fry didn't disappear is that Enos and Mildred could've had sex before Fry came to the past. Mildred could've possibly gotten pregnant with Fry's dad by Enos before he died. Then Fry wouldn't have necessarily fathered his Dad. But we all know now that he did, as revealed in The Why of Fry.

    • At the start of the episode, right after they go through the timehole, the global positioning system fails as it's now 1947, meaning the Planet Express ship can't fly and it crashes. However, at the end of the episode, the ship is able to fly into space - and with an open hatch, yet with no problems whatsoever.

    • In Luck of the Fryish, Fry's Dad said that every man in their family had the name Yancy dating back to minute-man Yancy Fry. Minute men were in the American revolution and in this episode his name is Enos. However, Fry's Dad, Yancy Sr., said it is his name, his Grandfathers name, his Great-Grandfathers name, and so on. He never actually said that his Father was named Yancy.

    • It is told here that Enos died in an atomic test explosion at Roswell in 1947. The United States did no atomic explosion testing in 1947, either above ground or in atolls. Tests were performed in 1946 and in atoll testing in 1948, but none in 1947, for whatever reason.

    • When they take the satellite, it was on the bathroom roof, but when we first see it, it's on a big brick building.

    • Fry is driving an army jeep away from where he left Enos wearing an army uniform when the A-bomb test goes off. Meanwhile the Professor and Leela are sitting in the malt shop while the mushroom cloud is rising. Fry then appears wearing his normal clothes just as the cloud disappears. How did he (a) change to his normal clothes so quickly and (b) make it into the city and the malt shop in less than two minutes he had to be at least two miles out of the city.

    • Science Lesson — Even assuming time travel were possible, a person becoming his or her own ancestor would be very unlikely, although not impossible.
      For sexual reproduction to work, a person's chromosomes are split into two sets. In women, these are stored in eggs; in men, sperm. The two halves are joined during conception to create the genetic template for the new individual.
      For someone to become their own ancestor, the exact same set of chromosomes must be passed down through the generations. In Fry's case, for example, the sperm that conceived his father would have contained all the genes Fry already received from his father. Then, when Fry's father mated with Fry's mother, the sperm that conceived Fry would have had the identical genetic makeup as the one that conceived Fry's father. The odds against this are staggering. And for each generation removed, it becomes more unlikely, because the exact same genetic code must be passed down through the generations or the ultimate result, in this case Fry, will not be genetically identical to himself, creating a paradox. But since Fry is his own grandfather, his sperm beat the odds twice.
      Imagine if Fry went back to the middle ages or Roman times to conceive an ancient ancestor. The same sperm variation would have to be passed down 100 times, and that just doesn't happen, considering the complexity of our genetic material.

    • Right after Bender gets flung out of the Planet Express ship, his head is visible but his antenna is gone, however in the next scene his antenna's back on his head.

    • When Bender crashes into the ground, his head is deformed by the crash, but when Fry holds his head, it's back to its original shape.

    • It seemed that Fry was made sterile when Bender used the F-Ray on him in Fry and the Slurm Factory,' but here Fry was healthy enough to be able to birth his own Father. However, this could still be argued as fact due to the worms from Parasites Lost having repaired Fry's spermbank. Zoidberg was seen riding in on a sperm during the episode.

    • If the Professor is Fry's great-great-great (x 30)... nephew, that means that Fry's grandfather Enos must also be one of the Professor's great...great...great etc. grandparents, yet he seems unworried that he might disappear with Fry if Enos was killed.

  • Quotes

    • (The surgeon is cutting one of Zoidberg's organs with a saw)
      Zoidberg: Hey, don't cut that! I need that to speak!
      (The surgeon looks at another guy and start's cutting the organ faster)

    • Bender: 1947 can kiss my shiny metal (his head falls out of the Planet Express ship then starts to fall) aaaaaaass!

    • Pathologist #1: Heart.
      Zoidberg: Take, I've got four of them.
      Pathologist #2: Stomach contents: One deviled egg.
      Zoidberg: Deviled egg?
      Zoidberg slurps it and the pathologist pulls it out again
      Pathologist #2: The same deviled egg.

    • Farnsworth: Well, now everything is back as it was. And if history doesn't care that our degenerate friend Fry is his own grandfather then who are we to judge?
      Bender: Amen!

    • Fry: Oh, poor Bender. He must be so lonely right now, trapped a thousand years in the past. Hey! Wait a second!

    • Farnsworth: What the hell have you done, Fry?
      Fry: Relax! She can't be my grandmother. I figured it all out.
      Farnsworth: Of course she's your grandmother, you perverted dope!

    • Mildred: Every little thing reminds me of Enos.
      Fry: Aw, I know how you feel. My grandfather died recently.

    • Truman: Nerks to this space crab! If we want information, we'll have to do us an old-fashioned alien autopsy!
      Zoidberg: Hooray!

    • Truman: Bushwah! Now what's your mission? Are you planning to make some kind of alien-human hybrid?
      Zoidberg: Are you coming onto me?
      Truman: Hot crackers! I take exception to that!
      Zoidberg: I'm not hearing a no.

    • Truman: Fellas, this visit's top secret. No one's to know about it except the senior officers... scientists... and a single conspiracy nutter no one will believe.

    • Mildred: You remind me of Enos. Would you mind walking me home?
      Fry: Uh, how far is it?

    • Leela: Wait a second! There's a microwave radar dish at the army base. We could steal it!
      Farnsworth: No! That would alter history. Above all else, it is our sacred duty to preserve the past exactly as it was.
      Fry: Well, I killed my grandfather.
      Farnsworth: Wha?
      Leela: Wait. If you killed your grandfather, why do you still exist?
      Fry: I dunno. Maybe God loves me.
      (Bender laughs hysterically)

    • Mildred: What'll you folks have today?
      Farnsworth: I'll have the soylent green, with a slice of soylent orange and some soylent coleslaw.

    • The shack that Enos is in explodes
      Bender: (to Fry) And you are outta here!

    • Fry: She sure is pretty. You ought to marry her and father some children right away.
      Enos: Yeah, folks say that. But did you ever get the feeling you're only going with girls 'cause you're supposed to?
      Fry: What? Don't ever, ever say or think that again!

    • Leela: Fry's from around this time. I'll talk like him. Yo, homes! We're looking for a microwave oven.
      Salesman: Microwave? Never heard of that brand, sweetheart. What you want is the "Deluxe Gas Princess". This beauty has four broilers, a casserole indicator, a fold-out ironing board and, down here, a foot-soaking tub. Since, as a woman, you'll be standing in front of it all day.
      Leela opens the oven door on his knee
      Leela: Oh, I'm sorry. Now I'll aks you again: Where can we find a mi-cro-wave?
      Salesman: Sir, your wife's hysterical, so I'll address this to you. This oven is lightning fast. It takes only five hours to cook a roast.
      Farnsworth: Ooh, that's good news! You know, you really don't cook enough roasts, Leela.

    • Fry: I had no choice; I was about to not exist. I could feel myself fading away, like Greg Kinnear.

    • Bender: Pst! Fry! Stop interfering with history. I don't wanna have to memorise a lot of new kings when I get back.

    • General: What is your purpose here?
      Zoidberg: Alright, Officer, I'll move along.
      Man: What the general means is why did you come to Earth?
      Zoidberg: Not a day goes by I don't ask myself the same question.

    • Leela: Meanwhile, you guys sneak onto the army base and rescue Bender's body.
      Fry: Hey, and while we're on the base, I'll visit my grandfather, Enos. He was stationed at Roswell.
      Farnsworth: Your grandfather? Stay away from him, you dim-witted monkey!

    • Bender: That's no flying saucer! That's my ass!
      Fry: My God! This means the flying saucer that crashed in Roswell... was us!
      Farnsworth: And the alien they captured was... was...
      [Cut to: Airbase Hangar]
      Zoidberg: Hello! So what are you guys doing tonight? I'm up for whatever.

    • Bender: Wait a second. You mean we travelled through time?
      Farnsworth: Doy! Some idiot must have put metal in the microwave.
      Fry: Yo!

    • Man: General, in all my years of covering top secret discoveries with sheets, I've never dramatically revealed anything as shocking as this. Dun-dun-dun! The debris from an alien spaceship.

    • Leela: Everyone, put on your seatbelts.
      Bender: Ah, those things cost more lives than they save.

    • Fry: Bender, what was it like lying in that hole for a thousand years?
      Bender: I was enjoying it until you guys showed up.

    • Zoidberg: There! Good as new!
      (Leela holds up an organ)
      Leela: Don't you need this one?
      Zoidberg: Oh, no! That's my...
      (He gags, chokes and falls over. He gets back up again, smiling)

    • Truman: Whistling Dixie! I want this sent to Area 51 for study.
      General: But, sir, that's where we're building the fake moon landing set.
      Truman: Then we'll have to really land on the moon. Invent NASA and tell them to get off their fannies!

    • Fry: Aw. There, there. If it makes you feel any better, his body was vaporised so there's no chance of him coming back as a zombie.
      Mildred: I'm not worried about that.
      Fry: Then you're a braver woman than I.

    • Leela (whispering): It's the 20th century, Professor.
      Farnsworth: Oh, right! I'll have a croque monsieur, the paella, two mutton pills and a stein of mead.
      Leela: I'll just have a small injection of Femislim.
      Mildred: Uh, two chilli dogs coming up.

    • Fry: OK, we're in the middle of nowhere, which is the safest part of nowhere.

    • Fry: Oh! You almost got neutered.
      Enos: Well it ain't as bad as getting killed.
      Fry: For me it is!

    • Enos: Uh, I'll have a pie with a fried egg on top.

    • Enos: See that waitress there?
      Fry: Yowza! I know what I want for dessert!
      Enos: That's my fiancée, Mildred.
      Fry: Grandma Mildred? Uh, no dessert! Just coffee.

    • Enos: Say, you got anything to eat in that there lunchbox? (He reaches into Bender's head and takes out some microchips) Ooh! Snacks!
      (He puts them in his mouth)
      Bender: Hey! That's my brain!
      Enos: Damn! Them crackers cut my mouth up somethin' bad! Let's stop off for a malt.

    • Man: This experiment will determine what food, if any, the alien eats.
      Zoidberg: A buffet! Oh, if only I had my wallet with me!
      Man: Um, it's free.
      (Zoidberg squeals and eats all the food. The food splatters up against the mirror)

    • Enos: Well, thanks, soldier. I'm off to make Sarge's lunch! Handling raw chicken, best part of the job! (He licks his fingers) Mmm! Finger-licking good!

    • Fry: Are you crazy? You almost got yourself run over!
      Enos: I did? Then I sure am lucky you knocked me onto this pile of rusty bayonets!

    • Sergeant: Private, I want that toilet bowl so clean I could eat off it! Because I intend to!
      Enos: Well gadzooks, Sarge!
      Fry: It's him! It's my grandfather, Enos.
      Sergeant: Now prepare my lunch and place it in the latrine at twelve-hundred hours!

    • Leela: Have you seen today's news?
      Bender: High school gym renovations on schedule? What a load!
      Leela: No, over here! (she points at the headline) (reading) Flying saucer captured!

    • Farnsworth: Remarkable! According to the high-precision digital chronograph it's July 9th, 1947, which would explain why the chronograph has turned into this pin-up calendar.

    • General: Son, I think I can safely say, AHHHH!

    • Fry: We're gonna crash!
      Leela: Not if I can help it! (The engines go off) Oh, I guess I can't. Everyone, put on your seatbelts.

    • Leela: Why is there so little traffic around Earth?
      (Farnsworth looks at a screen)
      Farnsworth: And what's this layer of ozone? That's never been there before.

    • Fry: Ooh! My popcorn's done.
      (Fry opens the microwave and finds an entire corncob)
      Fry: Aw! It's less popped than ever.

    • Bender: Yeah! Anyone who misses this will regret it the rest of his life. Hey, Fry, could you go make some popcorn?
      Fry: OK.

    • Fry: I've never seen a supernova blow up, but if it's anything like my old Chevy Nova, it'll light up the night sky!

    • Fry: (throwing Zoidberg's organs) Take this Mr. President, sir!
      Zoidberg: The president is gagging on my gas bladder! What an honor!

    • President Truman: If you come in peace, surrender or be destroyed! If you're here to make war, we surrender.
      Zoidberg: Both good, the important thing is, I'm meeting new people!

    • Leela: The ship's fixed except for the cupholder, and I should have that operational within ten hours.
      Farnsworth: You've got eight!

    • Fry: Hey, what smells like blue?

    • Fry: AAAH! It's impossible! I mean, if she's my grandmother, then who's my grandfather?!
      Farnsworth: Isn't is obvious?
      (Fry shakes head)
      Farnsworth: YOU ARE!
      Fry: Aaaah! Aaaaaah! AAAAAAAAAAH!

    • Mildred: (On phone, receiving news of Enos' death) Killed? In an atomic blast? No sir, I'm afraid I don't take much solace in the fact that the implosion trigger functioned perfectly.

    • Farnsworth: Start the ship, Leela. Let's just steal the damn radar dish and get back to our own time.
      Fry: But- But won't that change history?
      Farnsworth: Oh, a lesson in not changing history from Mr. I'm-My-Own-Grandpa! Let's get the hell out of here already! Screw history!

    • Farnsworth: You mustn't interfere with the past! Don't do anything that affects anything. Unless it turns out you were supposed to do it. In which case, for the love of God don't not do it!
      Fry: Got it.
      Farnsworth: If for example you were to kill your grandfather, you'd cease to exist.
      Fry: (gasps) But existing is basically all I do.

  • Notes

    • Because Fry is now his own grandfather, he lacks a certain brainwave pattern, which is why he was immune to the Brainspawn in the episode The Day the Earth Stood Stupid, yet this information wouldn't be addressed until The Why of Fry.

    • This episode was nominated for and won the 2002 Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming less than an hour).
      This episode was nominated for a Annie Award for Outstanding Directing in an Animated Television Production.

    • This episode is one of the four best episodes of Futurama, according to Matt Groening and David X. Cohen. It is also on the Futurama Monster Robot Maniac Fun collection DVD.

    • Was originally to be titled 'All's well in Roswell.'

    • Director Rich Moore has been nominated for best Directing in an Animated Television Production, in the Annie Awards for 2002.

  • Allusions

    • The Flipside of Dominick Hide:

      There are the allusions to the British sci-fi program, The Flipside of Dominick Hide, in this episode. In the program, Dominick Hide monitors times of the Flipside, the time before time travel, his slot being in 1980. He goes back in time to try to find his great-great-grandfather, also named Dominick Hide. He fails in his attempts, but meets up with and has a romance with a woman named Jane, who it turns out was his great-great-grandmother, who he got pregnant, making him his own great-great-grandfather, Dominick Hide. He then returned to the future, where he found out he was the victim of a genetic time-slip, where it was known all along by his superiors that he was his own great-great-grandfather.

    • The first photo taken by the Conspiracy Nut that No One Will Believe of President Truman looks a lot like the famous 1997 Arizona UFOs which were described as hovering in a V-shaped path.

    • All You Zombies by Robert Heinlein

      First published in March 1959, "All You Zombies" is regarded as a classic science fiction time travel story regarding time travel paradoxes.

      In it, a man (who is later revealed to be a hermaphrodite) goes back in time only to impregnate the younger version of himself (who was then living as a female). He, in turn, is the baby who is born, making him his own mother and father.

      While the story is being told in a bar, the folk song "I'm My Own Grandpa" is playing in the background.

    • 1947 has "Hard Croon Cafe" which is a parody done in the same design of Hard Rock Cafe.

    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
      This episode draws from episode 80, entitled Little Green Men. In it, Quark and Rom take Nog to Earth. Due to an accident, they end up being hurled back through time, crash landing in Roswell, New Mexico.

    • One of the stores in the episode is called Gil's Televisions. Gil is a character from The Simpsons who sold many different items.

    • The Conspiracy Nut in this episode takes two photographs. His second photo of the Planet Express ship comes out looking like the famous "Surgeon's Photograph" of the Loch Ness Monster.

    • Doctor Who
      When the Planet Express crew and ship are travelling through time, the tunnel they are in is the same as the ones from Doctor Who. Even the colours of the travel are the same. Blue for past, red for future.

    • Star Trek
      When the Planet Express ship is about to crash the crew put on their seat belts, except Bender. This is a play that there are no seat belts on Star Trek ships (at the time this episode was made, the captain Picard has his own seat belt at the end of Nemesis) and Star Trek crews get thrown about in most episodes. Also the warning alarm has the same sound that the Enterprise one

    • Kilroy
      The picture of Zoidberg on the missile is a reference to Kilroy, a character done in grafitti during WWII that came to symbolize America's worldwide presence.

    • General: But, sir, that's where we're building the fake moon landing set.
      The general's comment is a reference to a urban legend and conspiracy theory that the moon landing was faked.

    • The X-Files
      The dramatic jeep headlight effects when they find Zoidberg is a quick parody of The X-Files scene.

    • Independence Day

      Title of the episode written on the side of the missile. Throw back to the movie "Independence Day" when they shoot rockets at the mother-ship.

    • Gomer Pyle

      Many of the things that Enos does and says are like Gomer Pyle (from The Andy Griffith Show). Including the fact that the actor who played Gomer was only interested in women because people expect it of him.

    • Eve Bade Adam Eat
      In the fiction collection ALMASHEOL (2002), there is a story called "Eve Bade Adam Eat". In it a writer for a college magazine is fired over a story about a girl who goes back in time and gives birth to her own mother. The author in the story, Henry Church, supposedly plagiarized his idea from a television show. The author, Jonathan M. Sweet, claims he wrote the story in the summer of 2000, more than a year before this episode even aired. The claim is true enough...but it's still very funny, especially that time travel-incest was actually used as the plot of an episode of a TV program, and considering the sordid history behind the fiction (which is told in the back of the book).

    • Title: Roswell That Ends Well
      This title is a pun on Shakespeare's play "All's Well That Ends Well."

    • The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy: by Douglas Adams
      Bender's head staying in Roswell for 1000 years could be playing on Douglas Adams's "The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy" where Marvin the Paranoid Android stays on a planet for a million years before he is found again in the future! Bender comments "I was enjoying it until you guys came along", while Marvin was miserable alone, and equally as miserable when he was finally found again. "The first million years, they were the worst. Then the second million, they were the worst too. It started going downhill from there"

    • Philadelphia Experiment
      The universes new space hole is a tribute to the time storm in the movie The Philadelphia Experiment.

    • Back to the Future

      In one scene Fry "saves" Enos from being hit by an army truck which doesn't come close to them before turning, reminiscent of Marty saving his Dad causing him to not meet his mom.
      Moreover, the storyline whereby Fry goes back in time, where his grandmother falls in love with him, is based on the movie, where Marty McFly goes back in time and his mother falls for him.

    • Star Trek: TNG This episode pays homage to (or possibly just rips off) the famous Star Trek: TNG episodes Time's Arrow. In "Time's Arrow", Data's head is discovered at an archaeological site dating back to the late 19th century. Data is later sent back in time, his head and body are separated, and his body sent back to the "present" (24th century), where the head and body are reunited.

    • Truman: Are you planning to make some kind of alien human hybrid?

      On the TV show The X-Files, the main conspiracy arc plot line involves a secret plan between aliens and the conspirators to create alien human hybrids who would be immune to the virus that all of humanity would be given. This comment by President Truman is a tribute (to the conspirators?).

    • Fry: I could feel myself fading away, like Greg Kinnear.

      Greg Kinnear is an award winning actor. He has developed an odd reputation as being a bad actor, a reputation he doesn't really deserve, but references to this are rampant in animated shows like Futurama & Family Guy.

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