Futurama is almost upon us.
On Sunday, March 28 on Fox TV, Matt ('rhymes with 'raining') Groening's sci-fi Son-of-Simpsons cartoon show will debut. After a couple weeks, it will be shown on Tuesday nights.
(note: Futurama should not to be confused with other popular 'ramas')
Already, there are at least six sites on Yahoo dedicated to the show. Mind you, that hasn't stopped the web creators from asking readers to vote for their favourite Futurama sites, or polling readers to choose their favourite characters (2000 update: dead link).
Let me remind you,
Why all the fuss? Well, if you see how many sites are dedicated to the Simpsons you realize that there is a lot of competition in attracting eyeballs. And everyone wants to be the 'definitive' site so they can justify their anorak fanboy antics with a high counter number. According to Internet lore the one who gets there first, becomes the one that becomes biggest (think of Yahoo! and Amazon.com). Not that this is always the case, but that's lore for you.
Another reason for all the fuss is pure anticipation of viewing pleasure. Matt Groening makes shows that rewards the viewer for his attention. That's why there is always two unique scenes embedded in the opening credits of the Simpsons. The writers of Futurama promise to make the cartoon with the same 'density' as the Simpsons. Perhaps they will do even more so than before: in Futurama there will be two alien languages that you can decipher if you are up to it. As more of the layers of Futurama become unearthed, Futurama web sites - ready from the get-go - will clock each detail.
I've read a couple of good interviews with Matt recently. The first was in Wired Magazine and the second was in Mother Jones. In regards to reading such interviews, paying attention has its own rewards.