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Bendin' in the Wind

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Episode
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Bendin' in the Wind
Bender'sgroupies
Episode 45
Production Code 3ACV13
Season 3
Air date April 22, 2001
Directed By Ron Hughart
Written By Eric Horsted
Guests Beck as himself
Opening subtitle Federal law prohibits changing the channel
Preceded by Insane in the Mainframe
Followed by Time Keeps on Slippin'
"Fry cracked corn and I don't care, Leela cracked corn, I still don't care, Bender cracked corn and he is great, TAKE THAT YOU STUPID CORN!"
Bender [singing]

Plot Edit

Fry brings home a Volkswagen van from the 1970s after finding out that fossil fuels haven't been used in decades. Bender is coaxed into using a giant can opener to open a can of whale oil, which has replaced gasoline. After complaining that the can opener killed his father, he is sucked up by the magnet, cut in a spiral and is completely immobilized.  While Bender is in the hospital, he meets Beck's head, who is being attached to a mannequin he found in a dumpster. Beck gives a speech to Bender and gives him a pair of robot arms to wear around his neck and to play his cut-up torso as a washboard. Beck invites Bender to play in his concert tour. Fry proposes that the Planet Express crew follow Bender in the hippie van.

Fry and the rest of the crew do their laundry and Zoidberg's shell runs in the wash, tye-dyeing all the clothes. When Amy tries to buy something at one of the concerts she discovers that all of the money was destroyed in the wash, including the change. While on the road, Zoidberg keeps getting sick and coughing up pebbles that are surprisingly pretty and colorful which the others use as a money-making tool. After a forty minute washboard solo that put Beck to sleep, the concert ends. The concert hall is next to a broken robot smelting facility that makes broken robots into paperweights. Bender declares that he will be an icon and a role model for broken robots and that he will play and raise money for them in Bend-Aid.

A day before Bend-Aid, Bender is at the hotel when Fry and the crew walk in and realize that life is better without television. They turn it on and see the Bend-Aid preview. To everyone's amazement Bender gets up and walks during his speech. The next day during the concert, Bender fakes paralysis, while Fry and the crew proceed to sell Zoidberg's "Love beads". Before the concert, Bender is presented with a very large check. During the concert, Bender shows off and dances and, angry, all the broken robots try to re-break Bender. Bender takes Fry's Van and drives it around San Fransisco in a Bullitt-style chase. During the chase, Bender drives the Van off a Hoverbridge, and it lands on a spot of land. However, Bender is shot into the air. When Bender surfaces he is immediately hit by Beck's bus and tries to fake being paralyzed again but Beck takes the check back. Bender takes a magnet, sticks it on his head and he walks out into the bay to the van, singing, "Fry cracked corn and I don't care, Leela cracked corn and I don't care, Bender cracked corn and he is great, take that you stupid corn!"

Alienese Edit

  • On the map, the State of Utah now reads "Human Farm" in Alienese.

Ongoing ThemesEdit

Character ArcsEdit

  • The whole episode revisits Bender's dream of being a folk singer, which he first articulated in The Series Has Landed.
  • Bender shits bricks for the first time.
  • Sal is having a good day at the beginning of this episode, delivering his one brief line more-or-less intelligibly.

Time-TravelEdit

Inspecting Fry's new van, Farnsworth asks after the "device that speeds or slows the passage of time". Fry produces a bong from under the seat.

Death, near-death, mutilationEdit

  • Bender is gruesomely crippled and disfigured by the electric can opener in the Planet Express kitchen.
  • A couple of piles of nearly-destroyed but still-living robots are completely destroyed and recycled off-screen. Bender can't see this happening but is horrified by the sound of it.
  • Bender falls out of the sky and lands on an innocent bystander. He is then run over by Beck's tour bus; he claims that he is crippled again, but stands up soon afterward.

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