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What You Never Noticed About The Moon In This Futurama Episode

The team behind Futurama is often praised for their attention to detail. Each episode is loaded with cultural references, Easter eggs, and scientific theories that fans may or may not catch on first viewing. But like any other show that runs as long as Futurama, there are bound to be plotholes and inaccuracies. In one particular episode, it seems the team made a small error that caught the attention of one eagle-eyed viewer.

In the episode entitled "Insane in the Mainframe," Fry (voiced by Billy West) is framed for a robbery and sent to the HAL Institute for Criminally Insane Robots (shout out to Arthur C. Clarke and Stanley Kubrick). In one of the exterior shots of the robot asylum at night, viewers can see a Crescent Moon with stars surrounding it. But as one Reddit user points out: "The crescent is merely the fraction of the moon that's illuminated." The rest of the Moon remains in the same place and though it's not illuminated you still would not be able to see the stars directly behind it.

The Futurama crew rarely gets the science wrong

Though it's a brief and inconsequential moment within the episode's story arc, the inaccuracy should come as a surprise to fans who are used to the futuristic animated series often rooting its ideas in actual science (with many exaggerations here and there, of course).

Even in the show's other depictions of the Moon there is accuracy to be found (aside from Al Gore serving as the heavenly body's first emperor and it becoming a popular tourist destination because of its theme park, Luna Park). In the season 2 episode entitled, "The Honking," Bender (John DiMaggio), as a were-car, howls in front of a rarely shown Gibbous Moon without any stars peeking through. And when Leela (Katey Sagal) and Fry drive on the surface of the Moon in the episode entitled, "The Series Has Landed," the show makes a point to animate the Moon's craters and dark side.

As with many of Professor Farnsworth's inventions, not every depiction of the Moon on Futurama stands up to strict scientific scrutiny, though we'll give them a pass this time for humor's sake.