'Futurama' Series Finale: Sci-Fi Cartoon Comedy Ends After 14 Years

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Friday, 06 Sep 2013 08:39 AM

By Clyde Hughes

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This might really be it for "Futurama," the comedy sci-fi cartoon show created by "The Simpsons" brainchild Matt Groening 14 years ago, which aired its series finale on Comedy Central Sept. 4.

"Futurama" has said goodbye before, only to come back alive on another network, according to Space.com.

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"In our hearts, 'Futurama' lives," Groening told Space.com. "We've been in this situation before. It's probably over, but we've said that before, too."

"Futurama," which centers on 25-year-old pizza delivery boy Phillip J. Fry who accidently gets sent into the future, began on Fox in 1999 and ran for four seasons, Space.com reported. The show went into syndication on the Cartoon Network then had four direct-to-video films in 2007 and 2009.

Comedy Central broadcasted those movies as 16 half-hour episodes, which became season five of "Futurama" in 2008-09, sparking renewed interest in the series.

That led two additional 26-episode seasons in 2011-12 and 2012-13 on Comedy Central, Space.com added. It was not renewed for an eighth season.

"I felt like we were already in the bonus round on these last couple of seasons, so I can't say I was devastated by the news," "Futurama" co-creator David X. Cohen told Entertainment Weekly in April when news first broke. "It was what I had expected two years earlier. At this point I keep a suitcase by my office door so I can be cancelled at a moment’s notice."

"Futurama" won two Emmy Awards for outstanding animated series in 2002 and 2011, but its ratings continued to fall from an average 2.6 million viewers in 2010 to 1.7 million in 2012.

"That’s a helluva run that few shows achieve, and especially given the fact that it came back to life, it’s really an amazing story," Comedy Central executive vice president of programming Dave Bernath told Entertainment Weekly.

"I’m more thankful and feel a sense of gratitude toward the whole process — and that we found a way to keep going for 52 more episodes — than I really am even thinking about the ending. It’s a blessing that it came back and lasted so long," Bernath added.

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Related stories:

Comedy Central’s Colbert Shutters His Super PAC

'Simpsons' Co-creator Sam Simon Dying, Giving Away His Fortune

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