Fry, in an effort to win Leela's love, makes a deal with the Robot Devil [Beelzebot] to become a gifted musician. He has tried to take Holophoner lessons, but his teacher claimed he had "stupid fingers." Bender realizes that the Robot Devil is the only one to help. Fry makes a deal only to regret it immediately as it comes with a hefty price.
One observation: Americans do have a way of straying from old sayings, don't they? Even their own! ("Idle minds are the Devil's playground.")
Well, the title was a pun on the saying "idle hands are the devil's playthings", which Rex is saying was originally "idle minds are the devil's playthings". Can't say I've ever heard it the second way, though.
I kind of enjoyed it; it was amusing to see the Robot Devil get hosed in a deal with the devil. Not quite as funny as I might have liked, but that's what happens when comedies worry more about character development than jokes.
Jay's Movie Blog - A movie-viewing diary. Transplanted Life: Sci-fi soap opera about a man placed in a new body, updated two or three times a week. Trading Post Inn - Another gender-bending soap, with different collaborators writing different points of view.
I noticed that at the beginning phil-w. It was on Cartoon Network, but only as repeats. It seems they have taken it off of Cartoon Network. It's now on TBS every day at 2 PM, followed by Family Guy at 2:30 PM. Family Guy's on Cartoon Network and TBS now.
. . . Rex is saying was originally "idle minds are the devil's playthings".
MarkHastings wrote (post #6):
I understand that, but what does that have to do with "straying from old sayings"? Isn't that the point of a pun?
The original saying is "idle MINDS are the Devil's playGROUND" OR "idle MINDS are the Devil's workshop", a reference to temptation and the metaphor of a place in which to operate. ("Google" the phrase "Idle minds are the devil's" and check the sites.) Pun or not---and this has been used elsewhere (e.g., the nugatory 1999 Columbia Pictures movie Idle Hands)---the result should have some recognizable connexion with the original. Hands being idle and minds being idle are, to my mind, on a whole different order of relations. Others of this ilk include "There's no accounting for taste.", "Seize the day.", etc. Those aren't "puns" on the originals; they're the piteous result of a total lack of understanding of what the originals meant.
JonZ wrote (post #5):
I thought it was a good episode especiially when Fry tried to play with his own hands
Funnier, and more to the point, is when Fry's transplanted hands touch Beelzebot in "places" (out of his control), and Fry says, "Yes, they do get around."
And maybe some of you are not old enough or experienced enough to recognize the joke when Beelzebot is going back to Robot Hell and he pointedly decides to take Nixon's head with 'im. Many a young person from either of two generations before you would howl in approval at such a development.
Also of note:
---Bender: "He rogered her hammerstein." (Again, a reference that escapes today's twenty-somethings and teens???)
---Every time Beelzebot claims something is ironic, Bender has to deny it ("Not ironic; just coïncidental!"), a reference to the "ironic" punishments imposed on him in "Hell is Other Robots" (episode #9), I suppose.
---The "Hedonism-bot" (a golden mechanical walking litter of "effeteness") surrounded by his brown (black?) slaves.
I thought it quite clever, if not totally unforeseeable, how Beelzebot got his hands back. And it sure doesn't surprise me that the episode turned into a musical, since Beelzebot's first appearance ("Hell is Other Robots") did also, where the gang lost a fiddle contest to him, but saved Bender's soul anyway.
Note that Beelzebot (the Robot Devil) and the Satan Santa ("Xmas Story" (#17), "A Tale of Two Santas" (#46)) are two different individuals, unlike what is claimed at some sites on the Web. What if they ever met?
The episode doesn't have the "guffaws" of the series' earlier material, but it was a very good going-out piece, nonetheless.
I think you are looking too deep here. I'm sure Matt G. has an understanding of what the original meant, it's only a cutesy title.
Oh, the statement was aimed not so much at this title, as at the sort of bastard sayings that I gave examples of. This one isn't too bad at all, in fact. The Devil is involved and hands are involved. Yes, quite cute. I just noticed the tendency of Americans to "wander" with these old sayings, sometimes to the point of losing all connexion with the original sayings' meanings, is all.