With a writers room containing three PhDs, seven master’s degrees, and over 50 cumulative years at Harvard, it’s no surprise that there are some smart jokes on Futurama. In fact, some are smarter than we are! Thankfully, over the show’s 14-year run, it never failed to remain accessible.

One of the great things about Futurama is that it works on so many levels. Whether you’re a fan of complex mathematical theorems and references, or you just want to watch Bender drink and steal things, there’s always something to enjoy.

**Bender Has Less Processing Power Than Your Phone**

**Mind The (Keeler) Gap**

A sign on the rings of Saturn reads “Mind The Keeler Gap,” a reference both to the famous “Mind The Gap” warning of the London tube system and the real-life Keeler Gap, a 42-kilometer wide gap in the A Ring of Saturn named in honor of James Edward Keeler.

**1729 Is A Magic Number**

So, then, why does this number keep cropping up? It’s actually known in mathematics circles as the Hardy-Ramanujan number. Apparently, when British mathematician G. H. Hardy once rode to visit his friend (and fellow mathematician) Srinivasa Ramanujan. He remarked that the cab he took there had been a dull number (1729) to which Ramanujan replied that it was, in fact, an interesting number. 1729 is the smallest number expressible as the sum of two cubes in two different ways. Comedy!

**A Sneaky Vonnegut Reference**

Ice-nine is a literary reference to Kurt Vonnegut’s fourth novel Cat’s Cradle. In the book, ice-nine is a crystalline substance capable of changing all the water in the world to an non-potable ice-like material. The fact that such a devastating material would be available for free at a convenience store showcases Futurama’s absurdity at its finest.

**Futurama Invents A Mathematical Theorem**

**The Quantum Finish**

**Colleen’s T-Shirt Equation**

Very appropriate given the plot line featured what amounts to a planet-spanning orgy in “The Beast with a Billion Backs,” and Colleen is a polyamorous character who loves everyone.

**It Really Stays There**

**Boogie Nights To The Third Power**

Seems like a great place to get down (provided you can do exponential math).

**Your Movie Is In Theater 234,567,890,126,0945**

That’s a LOT packed in to a two second sight gag.

**Crazy Strong Krazy Glue**

Strong force is one of the four basic forces in the universe (the others being weak force, gravity, and electromagnetism), and as the name implies, it’s the strongest. It holds together subatomic particles at the nuclei.

That sounds like something too powerful for almost anybody, let alone Zoidberg.

**Schrödinger Gets Pulled Over**

This is a reference to Schrodinger’s Cat, the eponymous thought experiment from the famous physicist.

**It’s All About Balance**

So therefore, the force the main building exerts must be great that the force of the annex, since the fulcrum is so close to the main building. Well, until Nibbler’s ship lands outside and ruins everything.

**Beer For Nerds**

**The Cryptic Roman Catholic Crypt**

If we rearrange the equation, we get 211 – 1 = 2047. This is a Mersenne Prime, in which a prime number is reached through 2p – 1 where p is any prime number. The mathematical joke here is that 2047 isn’t prime, it’s the smallest number described by 2p – 1 that is not a prime number. How could we have missed that one?

**The Math Problem In The Cupboard**

Basically, the notion that such an idea could be compressed in two slim volumes is ludicrous.

Bonus: There is also a can of “Condensed Milt” on the shelf. Milt refers to the sexual organs of male fish and mollusks when they are full of sperm. Probably wouldn’t be as good in pound cake.

**All Robots Go To Hell**

Of course, the episode isn’t all highbrow literary allusion, as the climax features a golden fiddle battle a la, “The Devil Went Down To Georgia”.