Futurama's Lead Belly Episode Didn't Have Enough Deep Ellum in It. Problem Solved.

Categories: Commentary

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Sunday night's episode of Futurama, "Forty Percent Leadbelly," documented the struggles of everyone's favorite bending machine, Bender Bending Rodriguez, to become the folk singer he'd always wanted to be. Now, while this may not be the blues singer that Dallas native Leadbelly, referenced in the episode's title and by a character in the episode whose main schtick is he keeps going to jail to get inspiration for his songs, so famously was, it's the first reference to Dallas since a tortured Dallas-Fort Worth reference in Season 4, Episode 5. This is the kind of stuff I get paid for, fact fans.

While Bender's life choices (being lazy, not doing anything difficult, breaking the law and getting away with it) don't really cohere with the kind of life necessary for having the kind of down-home folksy wisdom that writing successful early period blues or folk music required, we're convinced that, robot or not, his story of breaking out of Deep Ellum would have been both touching and farcical. Here are a few things that Bender could have done to make a name for himself in Deep Ellum, and live the fullest Deep Ellum experience possible.

• Use his natural skills to bend an entire Serious Pizza in half, creating a calzone that threatens to envelop us all

• Retro-fit his body to wood and live on the beach that is the Sandbar Cantina, as in the episode "Obsoletely Fabulous"

• Use his strength to push the walls of the Double Wide a further two feet apart, thus doubling the capacity

• Be told by one unkempt gentleman that you can park over there for free, demanding money in return for said information, only to get to the other place and be told the same thing by a similarly disheveled fellow who also wants money

• Use the delicious, delicious grease from food at the Angry Dog to keep his joints well-oiled

• Dedicate a cynically-positioned song to keyboard-wielding man of the people, Bob, thereby using his famous cynicism to earn himself respect and admiration

• Use his telescopic eyes to peer into the Eden Lounge to see if it's full of douches, only to discover that yes, it is full of douches

• Disguise himself as a bike, wait outside Reno's, and kidnap an unsuspecting biker

• Use his navigation system to figure out the most efficient route between Sons of Hermann Hall and Double Wide, because God knows I can't figure that out despite them being three feet from each other

• Fall in love with the gigantic sad robot by the DART stop

• Actually I've thought about it and Bender's robot apartment looks a lot like one of the hip Deep Ellum former warehouse ones where they left all the ducts out and concrete walls and stuff.

• Fix some of the goddamn sidewalks simply by virtue of being metallic and jumping a bit because God knows they can't get worse

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