[Opening Credits. Caption: For Proper Viewing, Take Red Pill Now.]
[Scene: Central Park Lake. People enjoy themselves at the lake; sunbathing, barbecuing and fishing. The Planet Express staff are there. Hermes throws a frisbee.]
Hermes: Go get it, boy!
[Zoidberg runs after it, catches it and eats it. Leela eats a sandwich and Fry kneels in front of her.]
Fry: So, Leela, how about a romantic ride in one of those swan boats? They're kinda dangerous but I finally mastered them.
Leela: Those aren't swan boats, they're swans.
Fry: Oh. That explains these boat eggs.
[He holds up some eggs. A shadow creeps over him and he gasps. It's a flying saucer. Crowds flee, screaming, as it lands by the lake.]
[A screaming man runs past Amy, who sunbathes topless, is briefly distracted by her, then carries on screaming. Amy sees the flying saucer and screams. A ramp comes down from the ship and a door opens. Nine basketball players walk out, dribbling basketballs. The leader, a man with an afro, steps forward.]
Tate: Pitiful ballplayers of Earth, I am Ethan "Bubblegum" Tate, commander of the Harlem Globetrotters. [The crowd gasps.] For generations, your puny planet has lived in peace with the Globetrotter Homeworld. But now, for no reason, we challenge you to defend your honour on the basketball court. [The crowd murmurs.] Will no one meet our challenge? Have none of you pathetic Earthlings game?
Fry: (shouting) What happens if we lose?
Tate: Nothing. There's nothing at stake and no threat, beyond the shame of defeat!
[A player passes him a basketball with Earth on it and he drops it into a bin. People gasp and Zoidberg holds Hermes back.]
Farnsworth: This will not stand! [He steps forward and the crowd murmurs.] I'll take you on, you air-balling bozos.
Tate: You, old man? Sweet Clyde, laugh derisively at him.
[Another player laughs.]
Farnsworth: I may be an old man. In fact, I'm fairly sure I am. But I'll put you Globetrotters in your place with my team of mutant atomic supermen!
[The crowd cheers.]
Hermes: Hooray, Professor!
[Scene: Planet Express: Farnsworth's Lab. Farnsworth has gathered the staff in front of a big curtain.]
Farnsworth: Behold: My mutant atomic supermen.
[He draws back the curtain to reveal five little men in nappies in a hamster cage.]
Leela: They're only a foot high, Professor.
Farnsworth: Well, they're still young. Mere atomic super boys, really. We'll need to speed up their growth with time particles called Chronitons.
Bender: Aren't those the particles that destroyed an entire civilisa--
Farnsworth: Good news, everyone! You're off to the Tempus Nebula to gather Chronitons.
[Scene: Tempus Nebula. Fry, Leela and Bender are tethered to the ship and hold jars. Fry and Leela wear space suits. Leela plucks a particle from the nebula and a hole starts to burn away where the particle was. She puts it in the jar. Bender lets them glide into his mouth, then he spits them into a jar.]
Fry: Hey, Leela, look at me!
[He takes the valve out of his helmet and his head inflates. He puts it back in and it shrinks to normal size. He coughs.]
Leela: Your face can take a lot of punishment. That's good to know.
Fry: There's a lot about my face you don't know! Perhaps you and it could get better acquainted over dinner.
Leela: Alright! Cool your jets, hotshot.
Fry: C'mon, Leela, why won't you go out with me? We both know there's something there.
Leela: No, I mean cool your jets. They're melting Bender's face.
[Fry turns around and sees his jets turning Bender red-hot.]
Bender: (shouting) Ow! Oh, my God! Ow!
[Scene: Planet Express: Farnsworth's Lab. The crew return from the nebula. Leela holds a large bottle of the particles.]
Leela: Here you go. Hot off the nebula.
Farnsworth: None too soon. While you were gone the Trotters held a news conference to announce that I was a jive sucker. [He screws a cap onto the bottle and puts it on the side of the cage. The supermen drink the particles and start to grow. One grows extremely tall, another grows an extra three arms, another grows a cannon in the middle of his chest, another turns into a spider and another gets radioactive eyes.] Behold! My invincible nuclear mutants.
Arachneon: (sexfully) Hello!
[Scene: Madison Cube Garden. The bleachers around the basketball court are packed. Marv Albert commentates.]
Albert: Marv Albert here at Madison Cube Garden where the Harlem Globetrotters take on a squad of atomic supermen in what promises to be a by-the-numbers athletic contest with no surprises whatsoever. [The referee blows the whistle and the game begins.] Here's the tip-off. Globetrotter ball. Sweet Clyde Dixon to Bubblegum Tate. Drives down-court-- And Curly Joe from the rear.
[Curly Joe grabs Armo's ass. Zoidberg laughs.]
Zoidberg: That one grabbed his behindus!
Tate: Who dares laugh at the Jesters of Dunk? We came to terrify and humiliate you, not tickle your funnybones. Watch as I embarrass your civilisation by passing the ball to Curly Joe. [He throws the ball and Thorias jumps for it but it springs back into Tate's hand.] Only to have it remain in my hands with elastic. [He laughs and the crowd "boos".] And perhaps this will wipe the smiles from your faces.
[He passes to another player and he throws it to the net.]
Hermes: Quit ass-mocking us!
Albert: Goosh goes up. [Armo grabs it.] Rejected! Grotrian from half-court. [He scores.] Yes!
[The crowd cheers.]
Hermes: Now the ass is on the other foot!
Albert: Supermen lead 45-42. Arachneon with the steal, to Thorias. Thorias from downtown! [Thorias puts the ball into his cannon and blasts it into the net.] Yes! He's really showing us what a man with a cannon in his chest can do!
Farnsworth: No showboarding, you atomic hotdog!
[He weakly throws a chair and a buzzer goes.]
Albert: And that's the half, with the Supermen up 48-42. Surprisingly dull, so far. [Arachneon drinks some water and signs some autographs for some kids.] Bubblegum, the Trotters are down by six. Reactions?
Tate: It was always our plan to trail at the half, thus deepening Earth's eventual humiliation. Also, what game were the refs watching?
[Time Lapse. The referee throws the ball up. Curly Joe sits on the scoreboard with the ball, just out of reach of Grotrian. He laughs.]
Albert: Curly Joe, easily amused by his own antics ... [Curly Joe slides down Grotrianís arms onto the court.] ... continues to wreak havoc on--
[Everything flashes and the players suddenly change position. The ball is now spinning on Tate's finger.]
Farnsworth: What the-- [The crowd mumbles.] Did everything just jump around, or did my brain just stroke off there for a second?
Albert: Ladies and gentlemen, something very strange has just happened in this basketball game between space clowns and atomic monsters.
[Tate shrugs and throws the ball. Lazar shoots a laser beam at the ball and it bursts into flames. Everything jumps around again and the Armo finds himself flying through the air. He hits the back board and lands on the hoop. The crowd groans.]
Farnsworth: Time-out! Time-out!
[The referee blows the whistle.]
Fry: What's happening?
Farnsworth: We seem to be lurching forward randomly in time, like a needle skipping on a record player.
Amy: What's causing it? Is it my outfit?
Farnsworth: No. It must have something to do with those time particles I used to grow the Supermen. Time and space are ripping apart at the seams.
[The Supermen gasp. Thorias releases the ball from his cannon and it hits Arachneon and splats him.]
Farnsworth: Oh, great! Now, on top of everything, we need a new fifth man.
Fry: Ooh! Ooh! Ooh! Put me in, Professor. I wanna show Leela my skills.
Farnsworth: Hmm. Will said skills pay the bills?
Fry: Who cares? We're 35 points ahead with two minutes left. What could possibly--
[Time skips. Fry is standing in the middle of the court holding the ball. The crowd "boos" as Tate takes the ball and scores. The game ends.]
Albert: Globetrotters win, 244-86. A dark day for humanity, folks. We have been beaten ... in basketball.
[The Globetrotters cheer and taunt Earth.]
Curly Joe: Yeah, that's how we do it!
Sweet Clyde: How's that?
Tate: You are all fools of the highest calibre.
[Everyone starts to leave.]
Leela: I don't know what you did, Fry, but once again you screwed up. Now all the planets are gonna start cracking wise about our mamas.
Hermes: I'm just glad my fat, ugly mama isn't alive to see this day.
Farnsworth: Enough about your promiscuous mother, Hermes. We have bigger problems. This time disruption is extremely serious.
Tate: Damn right, brother man. This chronological wang-dang-doodle could destroy the very matrix of reality.
Farnsworth: Tate? What do you know about this?
Tate: Not much, yet. But I am senior lecturer of physics at Globetrotter U. And I'd like to help you investigate.
Farnsworth: You're that Bubblegum Tate?
Tate: Well I sure ain't his grandma. Now look here, Prof. [He draws some diagrams on a board.] I think we got ourselves an excess of Chronitons in the subatomic interstices.
Farnsworth: Yes, I see. Something involving that many big words could easily destabilise time itself.
Fry: Is that a problem?
Farnsworth: Indeed so. At this rate, by Tuesday it will be Thursday; by Wednesday, it will be August; and by Thursday, it will be the end of existence as we know it.
Man: I'll have to ask you to clear out now. The circus need to set up for tomorrow's big--
[Time skips and the Planet Express staff and the Globetrotters find themselves in the middle of a circus. An elephant trumpets and they scatter.]
[Scene: Planet Express: Lounge. The staff watch a news report.]
Linda: [on TV] Time continues to skip forward randomly. Details at 11.
[Time skips and it is already 11pm.]
Linda: [on TV] This is the news at 11. The mysterious and unexplained--
Linda: [on TV] Turning to entertainment news, teen singer Wendy might just be the latest--
Linda: [on TV] --won three Grammys last night--
[Time skips. The picture of Wendy behind her has a "2984-3002" caption below it.]
Linda: [on TV] --found dead in her bathtub.
[Farnsworth turns the TV off.]
Farnsworth: Interesting. It's as if we behave normally during the time skips, but then we have no memory of it.
Fry: You mean we just--
Farnsworth: My, yes. Ooh, just like that. Any luck, Bubblegum?
[In the corner of the room, Tate, wearing a lab coat, does some equations on a board.]
Tate: Not yet. Listen, I hope you don't mind if I dribble a little while I work.
Farnsworth: Not if you'll grant me the same liberty.
[He wipes his mouth on his sleeve.]
Bender: Ooh! Ooh! Bubblegum? My name's Bender and I'm a huge fan of your work, both on and off the court. Can I be a Globetrotter?
Tate: Shut up, turkey.
[Bender sighs. Farnsworth swings something around.]
Farnsworth: Bubblegum, look at this. The background time radiation is fluctuating wildly.
[The needle on the "time flux meter" wobbles back and forth.]
Tate: Good Lord! That sucker's shaking around like some fine, imported booty.
Hermes: Say, I'm no physicist, but I think I know how to stop the skipping. We'll just--
[Time skips. Hermes wears a funky shirt and plays a steel drum while the others have formed a nude conga line.]
Hermes: I don't know how this was suppose to work.
Amy: Professor, I hope you find out what's wrong before we skip right past my birth--
[Time skips. The lounge has streamers and balloons and banners around it in celebration of Amy's birthday. There is a cake on the coffee table and presents around it.]
All: --ppy birthday, Amy.
Amy: Hooray! Look at all these presents!
Zoidberg: I hope we all have as much tomorrow at my birth--
[Time skips. Zoidberg sits alone in the empty lounge. There is a tiny cupcake on the table with a candle in it. He looks around.]
[Scene: Planet Express Corridor. Fry peeps around a door as Leela walks by.]
Fry: Psst! Leela. I've set up a time-proof shelter in the closet. There's only room for two, and you're the one I wanna share it with.
Leela: Fry, that's so sweet. Let me see.
[Cut to: Closet. Leela looks inside. There is a mattress in the corner, candles, a black light and a bottle of champagne in a bucket of ice.]
Leela: How exactly will this protect us from time jumps?
Fry: (sexfully) Because when we're together in here, baby, time will stand still.
[Time skips. Fry has a black eye and Leela has gone.]
[Scene: Planet Express: Lounge. Zoidberg looks over a chess board.]
Zoidberg: Hmm. [He hovers his claw over it.] Hmm.
[He picks up a piece and eats it. Enter Leela.]
Leela: Dr. Zoidberg, can I talk to you about Fry?
Zoidberg: Leela, I would be honoured.
[He moves aside on the couch for her.]
[Time skips. Leela talks as Zoidberg watches TV, ignoring her.]
Leela: --does the worst W.C. Fields imitation I've ever seen. Zoidberg!
Zoidberg: Sorry, you must have been boring me.
[He turns the TV off.]
Leela: The thing is, Fry is very sweet, but he's so immature. I love his boyish charm but I hate his childishness.
Zoidberg: So he's not perfect. You don't wanna end up old and lonely like Zoidberg! [He cries then suddenly stops.] You were saying?
[Scene: Planet Express: Attic Room. Farnsworth sniffs around with the Smellescope. Tate and Bender are with him.]
Farnsworth: Ah, there is it. The Tempus Nebula. Take a whiff through the Smellescope.
[Tate puts his spinning ball on Farnsworth's head where it carries on spinning. He sniffs and recoils.]
Tate: What's that funky jazz?
Farnsworth: The odour of pure time leaking. When my crew removed the Chronitons, it destabilised the nebula, causing time skips throughout the universe.
Bender: Ooh! Let Bubblegum tell it.
[Tate walks over to a basket of basketballs.]
Tate: Pretend these basketballs are time particles, my silver honky. As the nebula bounce-passes them off us ... [He throws the balls at Bender and they dent his head.] ... they cause these dents, or "time skips".
Bender: You are so smart!
[Tate looks at a map.]
Tate: Hold up. What if we were to move this cluster of starts to these algebraic co-ordinates?
Farnsworth: Their gravity might just divert the Chronitons to the empty side of the universe.
Tate: Yeah. But is it possible? Moving stars would require one bad-ass gravity pump. And we'd need all the money on Earth to--
[Time skips and Tate and Farnsworth find themselves in the Oval Office. Tate holds a "bad-ass gravity pump proposal".]
Tate: What the--
[They pick up a cheque for "all of Earth's money" that has been signed by Nixon's head.]
Nixon: Here's the funding for your gravity pump. But it damn well better work! We can't spend all of Earth's money every day. Now, how long will it take to build?
Tate: It won't be easy, Nixon. A jim-jam this complex might take months or even--
[Time skips and Tate and Farnsworth are in a large warehouse.]
Farnsworth: Ah, there we are. One gravity pump. [The gravity pump is huge and has a basketball on the end.] Powerful enough to move the stars themselves. Now to begin the arduous task of attaching it to the ship so th--
[Time skips. Farnsworth is in the Planet Express hangar watching the ship take off with the gravity pump attached to the roof.]
Farnsworth: [waving] Off you go, apparently.
[Scene: The gravity pump pushes a star forward with some blue energy.]
Tate: (from ship) Easy, Leela. Just finger-roll that star to the cosmic basket.
[Cut to: Ships Cockpit.]
Leela: Just a few ... more ... hundred ... thousand ... miles. There!
[Scene: The ship moves the star into place next to over ten others which have been placed around the nebula.]
Tate: (from ship) Nothing but nebula!
[Cut to: Ships Cockpit. Leela waves the time flux meter around.]
Leela: We'll have to run some tests back on Earth, but I think we've stopped the time skips.
Fry: Hooray for Leela!
Bender: And what better way to celebrate our success than by me showing Bubblegum the Globetrotter uniform I made myself!
Tate: Let me see. [Bender takes the crude uniform out of his chest cabinet and Tate rubs his hands together.] Hello, lawsuit!
Fry: Leela, I want you to know I think the way you moved those stars around was really wonderful. I got you something.
[He opens a bottle of champagne and pours it into two glasses. Leela gasps.]
Leela: Moderately-priced, domestic, non-vintage champagne? How did you know?
Fry: You deserve it. I mean, nobody ever stops to tell you what a great captain you are.
Leela: Aw! That is so true and sweet.
Fry: You're smart, you're beautiful, and best of all, you'll go out with me-e?
Leela: Fry, please try to understand: You're a man, I'm a woman. We're just too different.
Bender: Hey, Leela. Bubblegum might let me organise a bake sale for the Globetrotter wives. Can you teach me to make cupcakes?
Leela: Alright, but I wanna lick the beaters.
[She and Bender leave. Fry sighs.]
Fry: I got her champagne, I opened it. What does a guy have to do?
Tate: 86 the chump stuff, F-man. It's time to win Leela's heart with a big-showy, three-point romantic gesture.
Fry: Hmm. Maybe this is the moment to show her my real surprise.
[He sits in the pilot's chair and moves the ship into gear. Leela walks in.]
Leela: Fry, what are you doing?
Tate: Uh-oh. Time to boogie on down to the sauna!
[He leaves and Fry presses some buttons.]
Fry: Look. I've been studying how to pilot the ship. Impressed?
Leela: Yeah, actually. You're doing OK. The core reactor temperature's nominal, the blinker's off.
Fry: I learned how to work the gravity pump too. In case we need to move more stars. So, are we dating now?
Leela: Is that what this is all about? Please, just cut it out now.
Fry: Look, Leela. I know there's some perfect, amazing thing I can do to make you love me, and when I figure out what it is--
Leela: Fry, stop. I don't wanna hurt you, but there is absolutely, positively no way that you and I will ever, ever--
[Time skips. Leela wears a wedding dress and Fry wears a tuxedo. They are in the Temple of Robotology.]
Preacherbot: --man and wife. You may kiss the bride.
[Fry grins and kisses her. The other Planet Express staff and Tate throw confetti. Marv Albert is on a seat.]
[Time Lapse. The other Globetrotters and the remaining Supermen are at the wedding too. Amy cheers.]
Zoidberg: He looks radiant!
[Time skips. Leela's bouquet is in Fry's mouth.]
Farnsworth: Ye Gods, Bubblegum! We failed. The time skips haven't stopped at all.
Tate: Even in these formal shorts, I feel like a failure.
Leela: You tricked me into marrying you, didn't you?
Fry: Of course not.
Leela: How'd you do it? Drugs in the champagne? Hypnosis?
Fry: No! Drugs are for losers and hypnosis is for losers with big, weird eyebrows. I don't know what amazing thing I did you make you love me but, whatever it was, we're married now. We've got the rest of our lives to work--
[Time skips. Leela and Fry stand before Judge Whitey in the court.]
Whitey: Divorce is final.
[He bangs his gavel.]
Leela: Well, let's divide up the china. I guess I'll take the NFC helmets and you can have the AFC helmets.
Fry: Fine. Break my heart again.
[Scene: Planet Express: Meeting Room. Fry sits at the conference table and Amy, Hermes, Bender, Zoidberg and Tate are with him. Zoidberg puts his claw on Fry.]
Zoidberg: Don't be so hard on yourself, Fry. You lost the woman of your dreams but you still have Zoidberg. You all still have Zoidberg.
Fry: How did I do it? How did I get Leela to love me? I've got to figure it out.
Hermes: Maybe you're just a fantastic lover, Fry.
Amy: Um, no.
Fry: I don't know what I'm doing.
Bender: Maybe she'd come back to you if your best friend Bender were a Globetrotter. What do you say, Bubblegum?
Tate: Hell, no.
[Bender groans and Fry sighs.]
Fry: Oh, it's hopeless. I did something so great that it won Leela's heart and I'll never, ever know what it was. My life is empty.
Zoidberg: (sexfully) Zoidberg!
[Scene: Planet Express: Attic Room. Farnsworth and Tate look over Tate's equations.]
Farnsworth: No wonder we failed to stop the time skips. Diverting Chronitons is mathematically impossible. I knew I should have checked your show-boating Globetrotter algebra.
Tate: Man, I thought you knew that algebra was all razz-ma-tazz. A Globetrotter always saves the good algebra for the final minutes.
Bender: Vintage Bubblegum!
Farnsworth: The time skips are worse than ever now. Isolated spots are jumping by years at a time. Look.
[They look through the window.]
[Cut to: Outside Social Security Office. Two boys watch an old man walk out.]
Boy: Stupid senior citizens. Why should we have to pay for their social security benefits?
[Time skips and the kids turn into old men.]
Old Man: I deserve free money!
[Cut to: Planet Express: Attic Room.]
Farnsworth: Well, I'm stumped. We'll have to call in the finest scientific minds in the univ--
[Time skips and the other Globetrotters appear behind them.]
Farnsworth: Perhaps we could explode the whole damned nebula. What do you think, Curly Joe?
Curly Joe: No, man. An explosion big enough to destroy that mama would take out half the universe.
Sweet Clyde: You gotta Globetrotter that explosion up a little, Farnsy. Make it an implosion.
Farnsworth: By God, Sweet Clyde is right. An implosion might just form a black hole that would stop more Chronitons from escaping.
Tate: Whoa. Slow that brain train down, Prof. We'd need some kind of doomsday device to initiate an implosion like that.
Farnsworth: Doomsday device? Ah! Now the ball's in Farnsworth's court! [He presses a button and a machine rises out of the floor.] I suppose I could part with one and still be feared.
Tate: Give me some skin, Prof. I'm making you an honorary Globetrotter. In fact, everybody in this room's an honorary Globetrotter.
Zoidberg: I'm a Globetrotter!
[Bender runs in.]
Bender: (gasping) Did you just say--
Tate: Too late, hot plate.
Bender: Oh, crap.
[Scene: Planet Express: Hangar. Two Globetrotters attach a doomsday device to a mechanism and it rises into the cargo bay. The other Globetrotters shake hands with the Planet Express staff.]
Tate: We must leave now, for we are needed elsewhere. But we wish you Godspeed.
[They leave, dribbling their balls. Bender stops Tate.]
Bender: Please, please let me come with you. I can make myself taller.
[He stretches his legs.]
Tate: Bender, you can talk trash, you can handle the ball. But look in your heart and ask yourself: Are you funky enough to be a Globetrotter? Are you?
Tate: Are you?
Bender: I mean, with time, my funk level could--
Tate: Are you?
Bender: (sadly) No.
Tate: Deal with it.
[He leaves and Bender returns to his normal size and begins to cry.]
[Scene: The ship flies towards the nebula and Bender emerges from the starboard torpedo tube holding the doomsday device. He is tethered to the ship and wearing a jet pack. The tether jerks and Bender lets go of the doomsday device.]
Bender: Oh! No!
[He quickly grabs it again.]
Leela: [on radio] Careful with that doomsday device, Bender.
Bender: What does it matter? I'll never be a Globetrotter. My life, and, by extension, everyone else's, is meaningless.
Leela: [on radio] Roger.
[Cut to: Ships Cockpit. She turns the radio off.]
Fry: Leela, about the wedding. I don't know what I did to make you love me, and I don't think I tricked you into it, but maybe I did. And if I did, I'm sorry.
Leela: It's OK, Fry. You know we'll always be friends, right?
Fry: Yeah. But I don't guess anything I could do will ever make you feel the same way about me that I do about you.
Leela: I guess not.
[She takes his hand, kisses him on the cheek and walks away. Bender walks in, dusting his hands.]
Bender: Well, the doomsday device is ready. Maybe blasting this quadrant of space into a hell storm of flaming nothingness will cheer me up a little.
Leela: OK. Let me just take the ship out to a safe distance. [She is about to sit down when she sees Fry still looking sad.] Actually, I think I'll go down and prep the detonator. Fry, why don't you take the helm?
[Fry smiles and sits in the chair. She leaves.]
Fry: She's so great. I feel like I can almost remember the magical thing I did to make her love me. But I guess I never will.
Bender: Sorry, buddy. I too know what it's like to have a dream I'll never achieve.
[He walks out, slowly whistling the Globetrotter tune. Fry presses some buttons.]
[Scene: The ship flies away from the nebula.]
[Cut to: Ships Cockpit. Fry looks through the window.]
Fry: Oh! [He walks to the window and presses his face against the glass. As the ship gets further away from the nebula Fry sees the stars around it form an "O" in a huge message that reads "I Love You, Leela".] That's how I must have done it! I moved the stars themselves to write her a love note in the sky.
Leela: [on intercom] Detonation in three, two, one.
Fry: (screaming) No! [The doomsday device implodes and the nebula, the stars and Fry's message disappear. Fry stares at the empty void. Leela and Bender walk in.] Did you see it? Did you see it?
Bender: The explosion?
Fry: No, not the explosion!
Leela: Then what?
[Fry hesitates and lowers his head.]
Fry: (quietly) Nothing.
[Bender whistles Sweet Georgia Brown again as Fry looks back through the window at the black hole.]