Season 2 Episode 3

When Aliens Attack

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Nov 07, 1999 on Comedy Central
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Episode Summary

An invasion by the Omicronians demanding to watch the final episode for the 1999 TV series Single Female Lawyer, forces the Planet Express crew to re-enact it live.

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Katey Sagal

Katey Sagal

Turanga Leela

Billy West

Billy West

Philip J. Fry / Prof. Hubert J. Farnsworth / Dr. Zoidberg / Zapp Brannigan

Lauren Tom

Lauren Tom

Amy Wong

Tress MacNeille

Tress MacNeille

Ndnd / Linda / Jenny McNeal / Stenographer

Frank Welker

Frank Welker


Phil LaMarr

Phil LaMarr

Hermes Conrad

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (11)

    • If they have a recipe for immortality, then how did their ships explode without them falling in space or something? In anthology of interest 2, the same thing happens when Fry plays Space Invaders.

    • On Monument Beach, some monuments seen are seen in several other episodes in their normal locations, such as the Whitehouse in Washington D.C, and the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy.

    • Opening theme promotion: PROUDLY MADE ON EARTH

    • LOOK HARD: In the shot from Earth to Omicron Persei 8, you can see a brief glimpse of the Voyager spacecraft.

    • The alien's television is oval and quite small. It also has rabbit ear antennae.

    • Famous monuments seen on Monument Beach include; The Sphinx, Big Ben, The White House, Mt. Rushmore, Randy's Donuts, Easter Island Heads and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

    • The "Single Female Lawyer" credits said "Written and Directed by Fry," without mentioning his first name.

    • LOOK HARD: While Lrrr is grading the episode, you can see Ndnd in the background by a water cooler.

    • If no further episodes of Single Female Laywer would have been able for transmission, wouldn't the aliens simply attack in disappointment the next week?

      Possibly, they were only upset because they were interrupted in the middle of an episode, and were happy to see the end of it. Plus, the way they made the episode made it seem like it could've been a last episode, so the aliens probobly accepted it.

    • WNYW is the actual Fox affiliate of New York

    • Amy says Fry destroyed the FOX transmitter in 1999. If this is so, how could FOX transmit 8 hours of animated shows instead of Single Female Lawyer?

  • QUOTES (54)

    • Bender: Single female lawyer, fighting for her clients, wearing sexy mini skirts, and being self reliant. Hey I'm pretty good.

    • Hermes: We find the defendant vulnerable yet spunky!

    • Lrrr: And now we must return to our planet, to catch the end of a thousand-year-old Leno monologue.

    • Lrrr: Attention, McNeal. We are reasonably satisfied with the events we have seen. Overall I would rate it a C+, OK, not great. As a result, we will not destroy your planet. But neither will we provide you with our recipe for immortality.
      Fry: Way to overact, Zoidberg!

    • Fry: Now just read these cue cards... And action!
      Farnsworth: Miss McNeal, I'm afraid I must decline your offer of marriage. For, you see, I'm dying. Cough, then fall over dead.
      Zoidberg: My God, he's dead.
      Farnsworth checks his pulse

    • Fry: Trust me on this. While other people were out living their lives, I wasted mine watching TV, because deep down I knew it might one day help me save the world. Plus, I would have lost my Workman's Comp if I had gone outside.

    • Lrrr: Attention, McNeal. Your unexpected marriage plan scares us. You stole our hearts as a single female lawyer, and so shall you remain - or else!
      Fry: You see? TV audiences don't want anything original. They wanna see the same thing they've seen a thousand times before.
      Bender: Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Fry?

    • Fry: Married? Jenny can't get married.
      Leela: Why not? It's clever, it's unexpected.
      Fry: But that's not why people watch TV. Clever things make people feel stupid, and unexpected things make them feel scared.

    • Fry: No, no! Go to commercial!
      Bender: We'll be back after this word from Crazy Bender's Discount Stereo.

    • Leela: Uh, g- uh, getting back to the, uh, matter, uh-uh, if it please the court... Fry, there's nothing else here. You only wrote two pages of dialogue.
      Fry: Well, it took an hour to write. I thought it would take an hour to read.

    • Farnsworth: Uh... Jenny McNeal, you are charged with jury-tampering in last week's case... on account of your hot, naked affair with the foreman. How do you plead?
      Leela: Your Honour, I move for a mistrial, on the grounds that I'm also having a hot, naked affair with the foreman of this jury.
      Hermes: I'll see you during the recess!
      Lrrr: If McNeal wishes to be taken seriously why does she not simply tear the judge's head off?

    • Lrrr: Prepare the water cooler, that we may gather around it later and discuss things.

    • Fry: OK, Leela, you'll be starring as Jenny-
      Leela: Uh-uh, forget it. A, I'm camera shy; and B, I get tongue tied in front of an audience armed with death rays.
      Amy: Plus, you don't really have the thighs for a miniskirt.
      Leela: Gimme the script.

    • Fry: Y'know, I saw the first 30 seconds of that episode. If I could make up an ending, maybe we could act it out ourselves.
      Zoidberg: I could make the costumes.
      Farnsworth: I have an old five-megawatt broadcasting tower in the attic.
      Bender: And I, I could be an acting coach!

    • Amy: Check this out: Back in 1999 the season finale of Single Female Lawyer was interrupted by technical problems. Apparently some zidiot spilled Coke on the transmitter.
      Fry: Beer... I would think.

    • Leela: They're going to destroy the entire Earth if they don't see some stupid TV show about some bimbo lawyer?
      Fry: It's crazy! How could they even know about a show from a thousand years ago?
      Farnsworth: Well, Omicron Persei 8 is about a thousand light years away. So the electro-magnetic waves would just recently have gotten there. You see-
      Fry: Magic. Got it.

    • Lrrr: We will raise your planet's temperature by one million degrees a day, for five days, unless we see McNeal at 9pm tomorrow - 8 central!
      Farnsworth: I'm beginning to think there'll be no forced mating at all.

    • Fry: Wait, I know her.
      Leela: You do not, you big fat liar. You don't know anyone. All you do is watch TV.
      Fry: That's where I know her from. She's Jenny McNeal. She was a character on a TV show back in the 20th century, Single Female Lawyer.
      Bender: Well if they're hoping to see a TV show that hasn't existed for a thousand years, pft, they are royally boned.

    • Lrrr: Give us McNeal!
      Zapp: That was McNeal.
      Nd-Nd: No, McNeal, the single female lawyer.
      Lrrr: She wears miniskirts and is promiscuous.
      Zapp: Really?

    • Lrrr: We want McNeal! Stop stalling!
      Linda: And now a rebuttal from President McNeal.
      McNeal: The people of Earth remain united in my refusal to hand over myself. Total annihilation is a small price to pay compared with- (Zapp stuffs him in a sack and carrys him out; the crowd cheers)

    • Farnsworth: You'll be the captain, you'll be the delivery boy, and you'll be the alcoholic, foul-mouthed- [The door behind him opens and the real crew walk in.] Oh, God, you're alive. I mean, thank God you're alive! [He turns back to the others.] Sorry, check back in three days, a week at the most.

    • Leela: This is hopeless. If we're gonna get blown to bits, we might as well do it in the comfort of our own home.

    • Leela: Bender, damage report.
      Bender: The auxiliary power's out, and they spilled my cocktail.

    • Fry: I'm gonna be a science-fiction hero, just like Uhura, or Captain Janeway, or Xena!
      Leela: Fry, this isn't TV, it's real life. Can't you tell the difference?
      Fry: Sure, I just like TV better.

    • Zapp: You're a brave robot, son. But when I'm in command every mission's a suicide mission. Which reminds me. Leela, perhaps before we head into battle you'd like to make love to me, in case one of us doesn't come back.
      Leela: Maybe we should wait till afterwards, in case neither of us comes back.
      Zapp: Here's hoping.

    • Zapp: The alien mothership is in orbit here. If we can hit that bullseye, the rest of the dominoes will fall like a house of cards. Checkmate. Now, like all great plans, my strategy is so simple an idiot could have devised it.

    • Zapp: The key to victory is discipline, and that means a well-made bed. You will practise until you can make your bed in your sleep.
      Fry: You mean while I'm sleeping in it?
      Zapp: You won't have time for sleeping, soldier. Not with all the bed-making you'll be doing.

    • Zapp: Remember, our mission is simple: Destroy all aliens!
      Kif: Um, uh, not me, sir.
      Zapp: Oh, yes, right. Nobody destroy Kif... Unless you have to. Oh, ho, ho! The luscious Captain Leela. This is turning into one very sex-ay struggle for the future of the human race!
      Leela: Thanks, but I'm not technically human.
      Zapp: Right, right. Nobody destroy Leela either.

    • Zapp: We're all from different cultures here. Some of you are white, some of you are black. [He stops by a man and points at him.] You're brown. [He moves on to Bender.] And you're silver. But I don't care if your skin's red or tan or Chinese. You're all going to have to learn to die together.

    • Zapp: Since this is an emergency, all robots will now have their patriotism circuits activated.
      Bender: It is every robot's duty to give his life for the good of humanity. Oh, crap!

    • Leela: Well, you heard the windbag: We've been drafted. Everyone into the ship.
      Bender: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, hold on. I refuse to fight. I'm a conscientious objector.
      Fry: A what?
      Bender: You know, a coward.

    • Zapp: Call me cocky, but if there's an alien out there I can't kill, I haven't met him and killed him yet. But I can't go it alone. That's why I'm ordering every available ship to report for duty. Anyone without a ship should secure a weapon and fire wildly into the air.

    • Bender: Hey, look, Leela, it's that idiotic windbag you slept with.
      Leela: The Earth is under attack. Can't we just forget about that?
      Bender: Evidently not.

    • McNeal: And now, the man who will lead us in our proud struggle for freedom, fresh from his bloody triumph over the pacifists of the Gandhi Nebula, 25-star General Zapp Brannigan!

    • McNeal: Ladies and gentlemen, our course is clear. The time has come to knuckle under. To get down on all fours and really lick boot. Give our alien masters whatever they want a-
      The TV cuts to static briefly then changes to Lrrr
      Lrrr: People of Earth, I am Lrrr of the planet Omicron Persei 8. Is this thing on? Now then: We want the one you call "McNeal". Give us McNeal or we will lay waste to your cities with our anti-monument laser. We demand McNeal!
      McNeal: Uh, as I was saying... mankind would sooner perish than kowtow to outrageous alien demands for this McNeal... whoever he is. Am I right?

    • Linda: Once again, today's winning lotto number was 4. In other news, alien saucers continue to rain destruction upon Earth.

    • Fry: We're all gonna die, aren't we?
      Farnsworth: Oh, I should think so. Although last time aliens invaded all they did was force the most intelligent of us to pair off and mate continuously. Oh, yes!

    • Fry: Voila. The greatest sandcastle ever built. This is the kind of castle King Arthur would have lived in, if he were a fiddler crab.

    • Bully: Say, doll-face, how'd you like to make time with a real man?
      Leela: No. I'm not attracted to bullies. No matter how big and... handsome they are.
      Fry: It's OK, Leela, go ahead. I got a lot of work to do.
      Bully: Uh, sir, you don't understand. I'm a professional beach bully. I pretend to steal your girl, you punch me, I go down, she swoons, you slip me 50 bucks.
      Fry: 50 bucks? Not even if she was my girlfriend. You take her.
      Leela: Fry! Although I suppose we could go for a walk along the beach.
      Bully: Uh, no thanks, ma'am, I'm actually gay.

    • Bender: Bite my red-hot glowing ass.

    • Fry: Ah, just like my dad used to make... until McDonald's fired him.

    • Fry: Wait, Mount Rushmore and the Leaning Tower of Pisa? I didn't know they were both in New York!
      Leela: They are now. In the 2600's, New Yorkers elected a super-villain governor, and he stole most of the world's monuments.
      Bender: Truly a great man.

    • Leela: Everyone's too polite to say anything but you're covered with bed sores.
      Fry: Not covered!

    • Fry: Ow! Hey, quit it, Hermes. It's Labor Day.
      Hermes: Labor Day? That phoney-baloney holiday crammed down our throats by fat-cat union gangsters?
      Fry: That's the one.
      Hermes: Hot damn, a day off!

    • Fry: Pizza delivery! Wow, so this is a real TV station, huh?
      Technician: Well, it's a Fox affiliate.

    • Ndnd: It is true what they say: Women are from Omicron Persei 7, men are from Omicron Persei 9.

    • Amy: There aren't any copies left...
      Farnsworth: No, there wouldn't be...most video-tapes from that era were damaged in 2443, during the second coming of Jesus.

    • Zapp Brannigan: (watching the battle) Stop exploding you cowards!

    • Zapp Brannigan: Good work everyone; the mother-ship is destroyed. (Mother-ship emerges from space) What the hell is that thing?
      Kif: It appears to be the mother-ship...
      Zapp Brannigan: Then what did we just blow up?
      Kif: (checks radar) The Hubble Telescope.

    • Fry: What are you showing right now?
      Tv Producer: "Single Female Lawyer", it's the season finale; you wanna watch?
      Fry: Aw, I dunno...that's a chick show. I prefer programs of the genre: World's blankiest blank
      Tv Producer: She is wearing the world's 'shortiest' skirt...
      Fry: I'm in.

    • Amy: How do I look?
      Farnsworth: Like a French Harlot!
      Amy: (disappointed) French... ?

    • TV Guy: Oh my God. You knocked FOX off the air!
      Fry: Pfft, like anyone on Earth cares.

    • Leela: Fry, you're wasting your life sitting in front of that TV. You need to get out and see the world.
      Fry: But this is HDTV. It's got better resolution than the real world.

    • Lrr: Surely you know McNeil. She is an unmarried human female struggling to succeed in a human male's world.
      Zapp Brannigan: Maybe that's just her excuse for being incompetent.

  • NOTES (3)

    • One of the deleted scenes in this episode shows the professor telling Fry that they can't go to a real beach because after men stopped hunting whales, they overpopulated the oceans and made them too dangerous.

      Inclusion of the scene would have probably caused a re-write of a later episode when the crew goes fishing.

    • First appearance of Lrrr and Ndnd.

    • That mysterious man wearing a white suit with a big nine on it was seen again! He was among the people who were celebrating the departure of the aliens. There was a concept that the crew was going to explore where they would visit a planet where everyone wore numbers. If they did it, it would have been an homage to Final Fantasy 7.

  • ALLUSIONS (12)

    • Star Trek (1966):
      A door opens with the hatch noise used in Star Trek.

    • Females in Science Fiction

      During the assault on the "mothership" (hubble telescope) Fry mentions he's going to be a science fiction star, just like Uhura, Captain Janeway, and Xena. Interestingly enough, the three he chose were all women.

      Uhura was the Chief Communications Office on the USS Enterprise in Star Trek: The Original Series. Captain Janeway was the captain of the USS Voyager in Star Trek: Voyager. Xena was the warrior princess in Xena: Warrior Princess.

      Fry is also dressed in the uniform of the pilots of the Rebel Alliance from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (the entire assault is a partial parody of the assault on the Death Star).

    • Charles Atlas:
      The scene where the muscular guy picks on Fry at the beach is reminiscent of the Charles Atlas print ads which have a similar set-up.

    • When Animals Attack:
      The title is a take off of the TV special "When Animals Attack" aired in the U.S. in 1996, which featured video clips (all shot unintentionally) of animals attacking humans.

    • During the attack on the mothorship, you see a turret swiveling while trying to shoot down a fighter. This is exactly the same as a small scene in Star Wars ep. IV, during the attack on the Death Star.

    • Star Wars - Episode IV: A New Hope:
      The scene where Zapp Brannigan is informing the draftees of the plan of attack against the mothership is similar to the scene in Episode IV: A New Hope where General Dodonna and Princess Leia are telling the pilots of the plan against the Death Star.

    • The Magic School Bus:
      The second-to-last ship to leave Earth in the DOOP fleet was a flying school bus, just like the one in Magic School Bus itself. You can also see it in the Nimbus hangar in the next scene. (while this scene does have a flying school bus, it seems the similarity to Magic School Bus was unintentional.)

    • Independence Day:
      The destruction of the White House is parody of a similar scene in the 1996 blockbuster starring Will Smith.

    • Nd-Nd: It is true what they say; "Women are from Omicron Persei 7, men are from Omicron Persei 9.
      This line is a parody of the book title: "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus".

    • Bender: What you talkin' 'bout, Fry?
      This quote is a twist of the famous quote from the show Diff'rent strokes (a show from the 70's with Gary Coleman). The original line is, of course - "What you talkin' 'bout, Willis?"

    • Ally McBeal

      "Single Female Lawyer" is a parody of the Fox series Ally McBeal, which is about a single female lawyer. The character is even designed to look like Ally McBeal star Calista Flockhart, as well as being named "Jennie McNeal."

    • Contact
      The sequence in the first scene in which the electromagnetic waves are traced backward through space is based on the opening scene of Robert Zemekis' 1997 movie 'Contact', staring Jodie Foster.