- "Here's your damn peanut butter and jelly sandwich!"
- ―Bender (To Leela)
"Law and Oracle" is the 19th episode in Season 6 of Futurama.
Fed up with his go-nowhere delivery job, Fry joins the police force. In this new role, he participates in a car chase with imagery drawn from the 1982 film TRON and an intelligent reference to the physics puzzle of Schrödinger's cat. Successful in apprehending Erwin Schrödinger, Fry is promoted to the Future Crimes Division. At this point in the episode, the story veers into the plotline and imagery of the Philip K. Dick's 1956 short story The Minority Report and its 2002 film adaptation by Steven Spielberg. But Fry doesn't know what to do when Pickles (their Cyborg Oracle) predicts Bender stealing deadly booze. The Oracle then shows that, if Fry doesn't shoot Bender, Bender will accidentally kill their friends by sharing the deadly booze with them.
The episode opens with Delivery Boy Command being played by Fry. Fry narrates, saying "As being a delivery boy for centuries, nothing surprises me." A bus then hits Fry and the game is over. Much like "Space Pilot 3000", Zoidberg says "You stink, loser!" And Leela then says "Fry, pizza goin' out, come on!" (much like Mr. Panucci). Fry then rides his bike and gets hit by a bus once again. The scene jumps to Applied Cryogenics, where Fry goes into the same room he got frozen in. He then says "Hello, pizza delivery for, D. Frosted Wang?". Terry, Imju and Lou come out laughing. Fry then angrily says "One time was funny. But, every week for ten years, not as funny!". Imju claims it's not as funny, but still funny. Fry then tells his story to the crew and they all laugh. Fry says he needs to be shot in the arm. He is then shot in the leg by Roberto, who jumps through the window to hide after a robbery. Officer Smith then tells "The criminal robot in the building, come out with your hands up!". Bender then yells "Never!". Smitty then claims he means Roberto. He then claims he wants certain items such as a hovercopter and that every five minutes he doesn't get one someone will be stabbed in the ass. Zoidberg then states he's bluffing, only to be stabbed in the arse and yells "He's not bluffing!" Smitty and URL then break in saying "You called for a chopper?" and Roberto exclaims he specifically ordered a hovercopter. URL says "One chopper, coming up" and knocks Roberto out. They proceed to arrest him, and Amy and Zoidberg give Smitty a kiss. Leela tells Fry she loves a man in uniform. Fry says he's in uniform, and Leela states she means a uniform that doesn't involve short pants. Fry then resigns, takes off his shorts, gives them to Hermes and walks off. He goes to the police academy to get a job there and meets Sound Effects 5000. The future officers rise for Chief O'Manahan who states it's a hard job and if they pass, she'd be proud to call them policemen. The scene jumps to Fry's training where he rides in a police car, shoots targets and hits dummies with a lightsaber.
The graduation ceremony begins with Fry becoming a police officer, along with many others. Once Fry is a policeman, O'Manahan states he will be working with URL due to the unfortunate loss of Smitty a few days before retirement, though URL quickly clarifies that Smitty actually took an early retirement.
At Planet Express, the Professor states his new invention, wheels on a board, so Bender and Leela can make the next delivery without Fry. The Professor also states that they will be going to Pandora and they can't send their avatars because it's cheaper just to have them die.
In the streets of New New York, Fry and URL chase a car through Circuit City for going 15 MPH over the speed of light. In reminiscent of Tron, they catch the law-breaker with their light-walls and identifying one Erwin Schrödinger, who has kept a cat and drugs hidden in a box. Impressed with their work, O'Manahan promotes the two of them to the Future Crimes Division.
Meanwhile on the trip to Pandora, Bender and Leela discover that, without Fry, working for a delivery company isn't actually that interesting, and they say nothing to each other for the entire 27 hour flight. They then land on Pandora. Leela tells Bender to deliver the package, Bender then gets mad telling Leela he's the ship's cook, not the delivery boy. So Leela tells him to cook them something nice. Bender then comes out with a sandwich that splats on the screen. Words then appear saying put 3-D glasses on one minute ago.
Back on Earth, URL and Fry then get a tour of the Future Crimes Division, and get introduced to Pickles, a robot equipped with an advanced human brain that can predict crimes in advance before they happen. The tour guide then explains that a green ball states larceny, a black ball states fraud, the red ball states homicide, and the pink polka-dotted ball states clown slaughter, which happens a lot. A red ball (homicide) then appears. The guide then goes to the holographic computer area finding the suspect, the victim (Hattie McDoogal) and the time (5:08). Hattie McDoogal and her boyfriend are romantically sitting on the couch when the cops bust in and her boyfriend picks up the snowglobe and Hattie yelling "My Ka-Jigger!". He hits the cage and the parrots fly everywhere. They then arrest the suspect. As they explained to Hattie, her boyfriend wasn't intent on marrying her, since she promised her valuables to her parrots, whom he intended to marry.
While Fry is alone in the Oracle Room when Pickles alerts him to a new crime about to made: larceny. He finds a case blown up, Maltese liquor, a gunshot, and the suspect, Bender. Fry attempts to warn Bender not to go through with it but accidentally makes Bender decide to rob Hedonismbot.
Fry then returns to the Oracle Room, looking through the prediction and sees himself shooting Bender. URL walks in, talking to Fry. Fry states he would never shoot Bender. This creates an alternate future in which all of his other friends die because the Maltese liquor is fatal to humans, which Bender decided to share. However, Fry decide to have one last look.
We then see Bender ringing a doorbell at the house of the crime. Hedonismbot answers and allows Bender into his basement. A dog then comes out barking at Bender. He then distracts the dog with a steak and slaps it across the dogs face. Bender lights up a cigar revealing the invisible safe. Then with the dynamite he used to light his cigar, he breaks the safe open. Fry walks in with the gun. Bender refuses to put the Maltese liquor back. Bender trying to make a chump out of the future, stating he won't steal anything. Fry claims the oracle was wrong. Pickles then walks in with a gun asking "Was I?". Fry shocked asks "Pickles?". He says it was all a setup. Everyone would think Bender was the thief so he could steal the Maltese liquor and reveals his reason for the theft is to kill his human brain cells to end the misery of being an oracle. Pickles then orders Bender to hand him the real Maltese liquor that he switched around when Fry wasn't looking. Pickles orders Fry to shoot Bender and the fake bottle. Fry shoots at Pickles, but the bullet bounces off the invisible safe and hits Bender. Pickles then shoots Fry. Pickles then drinks the liquor and the human brain shrinks. Fry and Bender stand up. Pickles, confused, then finds out Fry and Bender had bullet-proof vests. O'Manahan and URL get it all written down and Pickles is arrested by Fry, who states it was all a setup. He became suspicious when Pickles showed him Bender sharing the liquor with his friends, as Bender is not the sharing type.
Fry later presents the Planet Express crew with the detective shield awarded to him for stopping both Pickles and Bender, but says he was immediately fired for tipping Bender off in the first place. The Professor offers to hire Fry back as an "Executive Delivery Boy", which Fry accepts, even though Hermes notes "Executive" is "a meaningless title to help insecure people feel better about themselves".
The episode was written by Josh Weinstein, and directed by Stephen Sandoval. On May 20 and 21, as part of its "Countdown to Futurama" event, Comedy Central Insider, Comedy Central's news outlet, released various preview materials for the episode, including concept art of the Future Crimes division, a storyboard of Fry making a delivery to a cryogenics laboratory and a 30-second preview clip of the episode. Originally entitled "Frynority Report", the original concept for the episode's plot featured a mysterious man travelling backwards in time, who would eventually be revealed to be Fry and Leela's son. Weinstein and series co-creator David X. Cohen spent time elaborating and working on this concept before the idea was scrapped after the writing staff concluded the plot "wasn't funny enough". "Law and Oracle" features the first appearance of Chief O'Manahan, the police chief of the New New York Police Department. Cohen has called her one of his favorite characters of the show's sixth season. An additional backstory between her and her love interest, URL, was scrapped from the episode. The sequence involving Bender and Leela making a delivery to the planet Pandora contains anaglyph 3-D graphics, as a reference to the moon of the same name from the film Avatar (2009), a film noted for its similar use of 3-D imagery. The 3-D graphics used in "Law and Oracle" may or may not work, depending on the type of 3-D eyeglasses used by the viewer.
Fry & Leela
- Leela laughs, along with the rest, at Fry's expense after he recounts the joke the Cryogenic lab played on him.
- Leela confesses her attraction to uniformed men, and Fry - who is still in his Planet Express uniform - attempts to flirt with her, only to get shot down.
- One of Fry's motivations for joining the New New York police force is to impress Leela, and make himself more attractive to her. This works, as Leela vocalises her attraction to him when he visits the Planet Express Building while in uniform.
- Leela agrees with the rest of the crew that Fry didn't really serve any practical purpose within the crew. Despite this, both she and Bender miss him when they go on their next mission.
- In Pickles' false prophecy, Fry can be seen laying flowers on Leela's coffin.