Futurama's John DiMaggio Boosts Fans Upset About His Non-Reprisal in the Revival
Many fans aren't happy that John DiMaggio might not be the voice of the lovable, foul-mouthed robot Bender when Futurama returns on Hulu, and the actor apparently feels the same.
DiMaggio signal-boosted awareness regarding his absence in Futurama's revival on Twitter. Beyond his initial statements on the matter, the actor has been retweeting and favoriting messages from fans who are similarly upset. The hashtag #JohnDiMaggioIsBender began trending on social media as many fans threatened to boycott the new season if he isn't reinstated. Some have pointed out the irony of relying on Bender to promote the show, while DiMaggio -- who played a major part in making the animated bending unit popular -- won't be involved.
Other objections stem from the unethical practices present within the entertainment industry, and how voice actors are generally undervalued. Fellow voice actor Tara Strong, whose long resume includes The Fairly Oddparents, Powerpuff Girls and Batman: The Animated Series, praised DiMaggio for the success of Futurama and weighed in on the unfair treatment of voice actors in the industry.
DiMaggio has been the voice of Bender since Futurama first aired on Fox in 1999 and has been an integral part of the cast throughout the show's many seasons and films. As Philip J. Fry's best friend and member of the Planet Express crew, he's known for raising mischief, getting out of trouble and delivering some of the show's most memorable quotes. It's difficult for many fans to imagine another actor potentially filling that role.
There are reportedly half a dozen characters also not returning for Futurama's revival, and the table read is set to take place next week. While the show will see the return of creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen, fans are skeptical about the series' quality if it lacks several significant performers. Audiences will have to wait and see if their pleas are taken seriously, or if there will be a new Bender when the season premieres.
While DiMaggio remains an unknown variable, Hulu's Futurama will see the return of Billy West, Katey Sagal, Tress MacNeille, Maurice LaMarche, Lauren Tom, Phil LaMarr and David Herman. The series does not yet have a release date.