Classic Show Returns to Cartoon Network After 14-Year Hiatus

Adult Swim has brought back another classic series that helped cement itself in the Cartoon Network lineup. After close to 20 years away, Futurama is making a return to Adult Swim starting Monday. The Matt Groening-created series ran from March 1999 until August 2003 on Fox before being canceled the first time.

After the show was removed by Fox and left for dead, Cartoon Network snatched up reruns of sci-fi comedy from 2003 until 2007, when Comedy Central took over. At the same time, the network also commissioned two more seasons of Futurama and extended its run to the seventh season in 2012.

The series has lost exclusivity with Comedy Central, making its way to SyFy, FXX and now Adult Swim to hold a place on the schedule. As CNschedules on Twitter noted, the return to Cartoon Network also marks a re-airing in the proper aspect ratio and proper audio.

The Simpsons creator helmed Futurama alongside David X. Cohen, crafting storylines and characters for a pitch to Fox. The series focuses on Philip J. Fry, a pizza delivery boy who is accidentally frozen for 1,000 years due to a wildly complicated series of reasons that will change over the series. Once in the year 3000, Fry teams with Turanga Leela, a robot named Bender and a distant nephew, Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth. The latter owns Planet Express, employing Dr. Zoidberg, Hermes Conrad, Amy Wong and the lovable Scruffy.

From there, it's futuristic sci-fi comedy hijinks with references to Star Trek, Twilight Zone and much more across seven seasons. There's a lot of emotion and heartbreak, too, which is unexpected for an animated sitcom that led into Family Guy. But few fans could ever watch an episode like "Jurassic Bark" and hold back their tears.

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There won't be any new episodes for Futurama this time around, but fans who didn't follow the series to Comedy Central will be treated to three whole seasons of newish stories. And they'll actually get a solid conclusion to the entire show, with late episodes that actually stand out with the best of the original run. Adult Swim may have had to dig back for some old standbys with Futurama, King of the Hill and Aqua Teen Hunger Force, but having them back in the lineup is a treat for old fans and possibly building some new ones.

It also seems that Adult Swim will welcome Futurama back to the network with a marathon on New Year's Eve. That's at least one option for the honorable souls who don't venture out on the holiday.