A Fishful of Dollars
|Navigation in production order
|Season 1 episode
|A Fishful of Dollars
|Patric M. Verrone
|First air date
|27 April, 1999
|"A Fistful of Dollars"
|"Betty Boop's Crazy Inventions"
"A Fishful of Dollars" is the sixth episode of Futurama, the sixth of the first production season and the sixth of the first broadcast season. It aired on 27 April, 1999, on Fox. It guest-stars Pamela Anderson as herself in a jar.
Fry's bank account from 1999 has grown into a large fortune thanks to its interest rate. Upon finding out that anchovies, his favorite pizza topping, have gone extinct, Fry spends his fortune on obtaining the last can of the fish in the world, putting him at odds with Mom who sees this as a potential threat to her oil business.
Act I: "Give it a rest, you two!"
Act II: "Being Poor Sucks"
Fry has a dream; he's in a class, the teacher tells him he is only wearing his underpants, which triggers a Lightspeed Briefs commercial. When he tells his co-workers, they tell him it was just an advertisement, which are now broadcast into people's dreams. In spite of everyone's claims not to be affected by the dreams, they all run to Alien Overlord & Taylor. Amy is stopped by a perfume saleswoman, a cosmetologist makes Leela "prettier" by drawing attention from her eye and Fry wants to buy a pair of Lightspeed Briefs but discovers he can't afford them, while Bender steals a lot of stuff, including many Mom's Old-Fashioned Robot Oil cans. Mom, who Fry had never heard of and learns from Amy that she's the world's most huggable industrialist, appears on TVs advertising her robot oil, and Fry suggests Bender should buy it but he is busted by the cameras. When they're trying to bail Bender out, Fry discovers his old bank account is still open. The teller tells him thanks to compound interest, his $.93 has grown to 4.3 billion dollars.
Act III: "50 million dollars worth of Anchovies"
Fry's new-found wealth immediately goes to his head. He spends a fortune taking his friends out and doing whatever expensive, ridiculous things they can think of, such as celebrating at Planet Express wearing top hats and visiting Le Spa. When he tried to buy his friends dinner, Professor Farnsworth tells Fry that his favorite pizza topping, anchovies, have been extinct for 800 years, thanks to Zoidberg's species who loved anchovies and ate them all. Fry tells them they were delicious. Later, they go to an auction and Fry gets into a bidding contest and buys stupid things spending a lot of money. He fights Mom raising the money for the last known can of anchovies in the world, which he ultimately buys for 50 million dollars. Fry begins to turn inward, immersed in his private recreation of the 20th century.
Act IV: "That stench... that heavenly stench!"
Mom reveals to her sons that anchovies represent a potential source of a super lubricant that would put Mom's Friendly Robot Company out of the oil business, costing her billions. She plots with her sons to get Fry's anchovies back, by tricking Fry into revealing his pin number - "the price of a cheese pizza and a large soda" at Panucci's Pizza where Fry used to work. They drug Fry and place him in a staged scene in Panucci's, where Walt, dressed as Mr. Panucci, tells him he just dreamt he was in the future, then Pamela Anderson's head (on Igner's body) enters and places an order, a cheese pizza and a large soda. Fry stupidly falls for the obvious trick and reveals his pin number. Mom steals Fry's money, and tries to extort the can of anchovies out of him. Fry refuses, insisting that it is more important to share the anchovies he loves with his friends than to be rich. Realising Fry doesn't know the secret of the anchovies and her oil monopoly is safe, Mom leaves. Fry puts the anchovies on a pizza, but with the exception of Dr. Zoidberg (Who threatens Fry for seconds), his friends hate them.
- Click here to see revelations about the future made in this episode.
- The teacher in Fry's dream can later be seen on the escalator after Bender sprays the saleswoman.
- In this episode, we learn that the currency of the year 3000 (Dollar) has not changed since 2000. We often see prices in Futurama, which are normally at the similar levels to nowadays. Thus, either there was no inflation from 2000 to 3000, inflation was eventually reversed, or, more likely, a "New Dollar" was created once inflation made ordinary goods worth thousands of dollars.
- The perfume saleswoman looks pretty similar to a jingle singer in the Torgo's Executive Powder sponsor of "Bender's Big Score Part 1".
- This is the first episode to be rated TV-14 for language.
- Amy says that her obscene tattoo, which is blurry to the audience, couldn't be seen on a low-definition television. This pokes fun at the dominant low-definition televisions on which the episode was likely viewed at the time it aired. However, subsequent years saw the rapid rise of plasma and LCD high-definition televisions, removing some of the humor from the joke for anyone watching on a high-definition television.
- There may be TVs with even higher definition in the future. Plus, watching this on a HD TV doesn't change anything, as it was produced in SD.
- Click here to see cultural mentions made in this episode.
Mom: Toodle-oo! [Under her breath.] Dumbass...
Fry: I've discovered something even more important. My friends. And they aren't worth even a penny to me!
Fry: Uhm, I've missed a few lectures. What subject is this?
Teacher: Ancient Egyptian Algebra!
Fry: Ahh! What a nightmare!
Teacher: Mr. Fry, are those your underpants!?
Bender: We thought you only cared about cans of anchovies and stuffy old songs about the buttocks.
- Bender wouldn't have needed to stuff the items up a sweater, as he has a chest compartment.
- He might have already filled up the compartment.
- Bank accounts go dormant after 3 years of no activity and are turned over to the government as unclaimed funds, at which point no further interest would be earned. Activity can be something as little as checking the balance or simply receiving a phone call from the bank, but unless there has been someone doing this for the last 997 years, Fry's money would only have accrued three years of interest, not one thousand.
- There may have been an error in the system which allowed him to still collect the money. This explains why the teller expected to have identity verification on him.
- Fry has a box full of 20th century television shows on VHS (including Sanford & Son). However, in the episode "When Aliens Attack", it is stated that all videotapes from that era were destroyed in the second coming of Jesus.
- Most videotapes, not all.
- At the end of the episode, Fry is seen opening the can of anchovies and putting one on a slice of pizza, but the rest of the anchovies are already on the pizza, meaning that the can must have been opened prior to the start of the scene.
- Fry opening the can and Fry putting an anchovy on the last slice are two different shots, so the scene must've skipped Fry putting them on the other slices.
- After Zoidberg eats the anchovies and demands more, Fry tells him that there "aren't any more, and there never will be." However, Zoidberg only ate the anchovies that were actually on the pizza, and there were many more in the can.
- It's possible Fry was lying to protect them from Zoidberg or Fry ate them before he put some on the pizza.
- $.93 with interest of 2.25 percent over one thousand years actually is 4.3 billion dollars. 0.93×(1+0.0225/1000)^1000=4,283,508,449.7111801.
- Assuming 3% inflation, that amount of money in 1000 years would have the same purchasing power as $0.00062 today (source: http://www.calculator.net/inflation-calculator.html).
- At Panucci's Pizza, a wall calendar can be seen. It shows January 2000 beginning on a Sunday, while January 2000 actually began on a Saturday.
- In the scene where Fry is attempting to buy Lightspeed Briefs and the ad with Mom pops up, Walt's hair is brown, where in the next scene he appears in, it is black as it appears in the rest of the series.
- Debut: Auctioneer
- Debut: Beauty specialist
- Debut: Big Apple Bank teller
- Censored couple (cameo, unknown moment)
- Dr. Zoidberg
- Debut: Dream Teacher
- Debut: Alien Overlord & Taylor clerk
- Debut: Mom
- Nixon (on poster)
- Debut: Pamela Anderson's head
- Debut: Perfume saleswoman
- Prof. Farnsworth
- Debut: Robo-Repo
- Debut: Robot Chef
- Debut: Scruffy
- Smitty and URL
- Debut: Spring Robots
- Debut: Walt, Larry and Igner