The recently announced Futurama reboot should be a cause for excitement. However, the show is facing some backlash over John DiMaggio not being included in the reboot. The ‘BenderGate’ hashtag has trended on Twitter, with fans of Futurama threatening to boycott the series if DiMaggio is not brought on to reprise his role as Bender. According to IndieWire, DiMaggio is interested in being a part of the reboot, but negotiations are presently at a standstill, which is why he is not currently part of the returning cast. This is apparently related to DiMaggio’s requested pay. Futurama fans feel that Bender is the heart of the show, and no one else can fill John DiMaggio’s shoes.
According to Variety, DiMaggio has retweeted several posts from fans with the ‘BenderGate’ hashtag. He even retweeted a post from Mark Hammill, who assured fans he had no intention of auditioning to play a “FAKE Bender,” referring to DiMaggio as “one-of-a-kind.” It’s clear that DiMaggio wants to be part of the series, and fans feel there is no show without him. Bender is an iconic part of the show to the point of appearing on t-shirts, and it’s hard to imagine him without DiMaggio’s voice. DiMaggio presently voices King Zog on Netflix’s Disenchantment, an animated series by Futurama and The Simpsons creator Matt Groening.
Futurama tells the story of pizza delivery boy Phillip J. Fry who is cryogenically frozen on New Year’s Eve of 1999 and wakes up 1000 years in the future. Among his many new friends and coworkers, his very best friend and roommate is the foul-mouthed alcoholic robot Bender, brilliantly voiced by John DiMaggio. It lasted for five seasons on Fox before it was canceled in 2003. Comedy Central brought back the series in 2008, but it would eventually end again in 2013. Hulu is giving the series new life, and the new reboot is expected to be released in 2023.
How do you feel about the Futurama reboot’s backlash over John DiMaggio? Are you part of the #BenderGate movement? Share your thoughts on The Nerd Stash Facebook page or @TheNerdStash on Twitter.