Critics might not have been able to find a ton to love about Matt Groening's new series Disenchantment, at least in comparison to early love for The Simpsons or Futurama, but fans have been quite celebratory. The good news (everyone) for both parties is that quite a few awesome references to both shows made their way into the medieval Netflix comedy. We've compiled the best and most blatant references spotted in Season 1 so far, and like the elves of Elfwood, we couldn't wipe the grins from our faces after seeing these moments.
Fry, Bender, and Professor Farnsworth Make An Appearance
Episode 10 of Disenchantment throws all subtle nods to Futurama out the door and literally shows Fry, Bender, and Professor Farnsworth in the rewind of the crystal ball sequence. The Planet Express trio are in Farnsworth's time machine and, based on Luci's statement to King Zøg, have passed through Dreamland sometime within the last 15 years. The moment basically confirms Futurama and Disenchantment exist in the same universe, and has inspired speculation about it meaning a crossover could happen. Well, it apparently already happened, so hopefully the show makes visual mention of this theory in future episodes, perhaps via flashback!
That Elf That Looks Like Lisa Simpson
Disenchantment viewers definitely noticed quite a few background characters in this universe who vaguely resemble popular Simpsons and Futurama characters, with this elf being one of the most distinct ones. Sure, Lisa Simpson doesn't have a green tuft of hair coming out the back of her head, but this elf's distinct yellow color, spiky hair, and orange-ish dress seem like obvious nods to the young Springfield genius. Fans will spot her a few times throughout scenes set in Elfwood, even though the actual character adds little substance to the show overall. It's a shame really, as I imagine she'd be a decent saxophone player if given the spotlight!
A Wig That Looks Just Like Fry's Hair
Fry and the gang's trip to the past appear to have had an impact on fashion in Dreamland, as a wig resembling the character's hair is spotted in Episode 2. Here, Disenchantment fans were given a breadcrumb hinting at these two shows being connected, with the possible twist that this Netflix show exists after the second Big Bang referenced in the Futurama episode "The Late Phillip J. Fry." We didn't see the 31st century time-travelers having any specific or influential visits to Dreamland in Futurama, but perhaps we'll witness at some point how Fry's hair made such an impact on society. As well as who would ever buy that wig.
A Three-Eyed Owl, Possibly Named Blinky
Disenchantment's nods to The Simpsons are a bit more subtle than the Futurama easter eggs, but there are still some good connections hidden in the series. For example, the emergence of a three-eyed owl in Episode 1 is almost certainly a reference to Blinky, the tri-eyed species of fish that have been a staple of Springfield wildlife for years, and was thought to have been mutated by the toxic waste output from the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, although this easter egg could suggest otherwise. Either that or this multi-eyed bird is a sign that things could get way more like Game of Thrones in future episodes!
A Medieval Planet Express Ship, Sorta
If the Planet Express team hadn't made a noteworthy stop off in Dreamland, then why does Disenchantment's premiere feature a flying, medieval-looking ship that resembles Futurama's iconic vehicle? Granted, the view of the ship is from very far away, and one would imagine most flying ships prior to planes have a somewhat similar blimp-ish shape. Hell, for all we know, that could be Kang and Kodos' ancestors hanging out in the sky up there. In either case, it appears flying transportation is indeed a thing in Disenchantment. Whether our central characters know about them or not is another question. Are there any Harlem Globetrotters in Dreamland to help us out?
A Classic Simpsons Quote With A Twist
In Episode 1, Bean's servant Bunty preps her for her wedding using leeches because, as the saying goes, "Whores rouge, ladies leech." The Disenchantment quote is a unique twist on a somewhat deep-cut reference The Simpsons' second season, where Marge's mom gives similar advice but uses cheek pinching as the more ladylike behavior. The quotes aren't exactly the same, but the similarities between the moments are both so blatant that there's no mistaking this was an intentional reference to The Simpsons episode "The Way We Was." There's perhaps a deeper nod to be found there, considering both women have a difficult night following their given advice.
Disenchantment fans can list any nods we missed in the comments, and binge all of Season 1 on Netflix right now. For a look at what else is headed to the streaming service, be sure to visit our Netflix premiere guide. For a look at what's happening on cable television, visit our summer and fall premiere guides.
Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.
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