Philip J. Fry

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Kif White
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Philip J. Fry

Postby Kif White » Fri Sep 03, 2004 12:36 am

I'm not sure if this is correct, so Graham or D.B.: feel free to move, rename or change this if it's not right. This is the first part for Fry, I'll write more later, including how he gets along with the other major characters, some of the things he does, etc. So please save any comments regarding what may have been missed out until the second part is written and posted, since it'll likely be covered in there anyway. Feel free to comment on what has been covered all you like though:

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Originally from the late 20th Century, Philip J. Fry found himself cast 1000 years into the future on the dawn of the year 2000 after falling into an empty cryogenic capsule. When waking up, Fry met Leela, who initially shocked him a little with her one eye. Since his life of the past as a pizza delivery boy was such a drag He saw his new locale timewise as a chance to a new life, only to be disappointed when tests cast him as a delivery boy again. Upon fleeing from a determined Leela, he met Bender as well, and then his great, great, great, etc nephew, Professor Farnsworth. After escaping the police, Fry accepted a job from his ancient relative as a space delivery boy, much happier with the style of this new, if somewhat similar, job. This whole situation leads to a very important fact that can easily be overlooked: Fry is from the 20th Century, not the 21st, so all the most recent things and experiences the world has gone through since the new Millennium won't have been witnessed and experienced by him. He may find out about them later, but he will not have experienced them himself.

Fry has a rather quirky personality. Due to events that made him his own grandfather, namely travelling back in time and sleeping with his grandmother, Fry came to lack the delta brain wave; a natural phenomenon that all animals, plants and even robots have. While this has beneficial uses that only very few know of, is also accounts for his rather low intelligence and a learning disability. Fry tends to use his brain properly only in rare occasions, and will often say and do stupid things. This leads to him being somewhat of a threat to himself, especially in the future where he doesn't really know how the universe works there as well. He was already naive in his own time, and is especially naive where he is now, which means it's quite common for his friends, usually Leela notably, to have to help him out of situations he frequently gets himself into. Fry can often get tongue-tied or simply say or do the wrong things, whether it be almost selling his own lungs for gills or getting himself into awkward situations on alien worlds. Despite his major shortcoming intelligence wise, Fry does tend to have a more sensitive side, one that many of his 31st Century friends lack. Society has apparently become less caring, more selfish and more destructive in the future, and Fry seems to retain some 20th Century feelings and values that those around him don't tend to exhibit as much. As a result, he'll often think more with his heart than his head, and put himself before others, even if he tends to be somewhat cowardly sometimes. He cares a lot for his best friend Bender, and to an even greater extent his unrequited love, Leela. Fry's general mindlessness makes him happy most of the time though, and as long as he's having fun to some extent, there's usually a smile on his face.

Fry actually adjusted to the future fairly well, settling into his new intergalactic job with a lot of enthusiasm. His decendence and rather simple mind gives him a curious and naive view of the wonderland around him, and while the others around him tend to see everything as just normal, he is frequently awed and impressed by his surroundings, even four or five years into living there. He still refers to it as being "the future" often, and while he has settled into the lifestyle somewhat, and is less naive and wowed by the world around him, he still shows a rather upbeat nature and has a childlike innocent view of it all. He used to live in the Planet Express office, but then moved into Bender's closet, which is the size of amn average human apartment. This is, like much of him and his personality, decorated with 20th Century style, and while he loves living in the 31st Century, he has quite a pride in the time period he hailed from, and always jumps at the chance to use his knowledge, ideas or influences from that time if it ever helps. When he doesn't have that much intelligence, it's one of the few attributes he actually has that can impress other people.

While Fry is generally happy with his life in the future, he will sometimes pine for his 20th Century times, though strangely moreso for lifestyle and objects rather than personal ties. He left behind a family, two parents and a brother, a dog named Seymour, his boss and co-workers at Panucci's Pizza and a girlfiend named Michelle (who later ended up freezing herself too.) With the exception of Seymour, Fry has rarely shown any indication that he misses his now lost family.
His father Yancy, a Vietnam veteran whom Fry referred to as "The Commander," was a hard and rough man with great pride for his country and forefathers, though more than a little wary about the impending possible threat of nuclear war from the Russians or Y2K. He named Fry "Philip" after a philips screwdriver and once worked at McDonalds until getting fired.
Fry's mother came across as a rather causual parent, more interested in sports than her own family, and considered the birth of Fry to come second to the victory of her favourite team on the same day. Fry's comments have shown that they hit each other and also considered putting him through school to be a waste of taxpayer money, suggesting perhaps that Fry wasn't really considered in high regard by them and perhaps why he hasn't shown signs of missing them. Unknown to him though, his parents did miss him once he disappeared.
His older brother, also named Yancy, struck a bad chord with Fry, and while they often seemed to hang out together as children, Fry became bitter at Yancy for stealing his ideas and things. He got the impression his brother hated him, until discovering that it wasn't the case when his brother's newborn son was named for him to honour his spirit and show how much his elder brother really did miss him.
Last edited by Kif White on Fri Sep 03, 2004 12:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re:Philip J. Fry

Postby c_nordlander » Fri Sep 03, 2004 8:51 am

*applauds*

I don't know what I expected in this forum, but this is it! Great work, Kenneth. Highly impressive and informative. I don't have anything to add to it.

Particular thanks for explaining the inbreeding/delta brain wave issue, and also emphasising that Fry was *not* around in the 21st century (which should be self-evident, but an annoying mistake when it happens, and one that I'm sure I've committed myself).

Again, kudos!
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Re:Philip J. Fry

Postby D.B. » Fri Sep 03, 2004 3:07 pm

It's looking good, Kif - format is fine, and thus far you've got a good, consise summary of Fry's life and general personality. I'll wait until you've posted all of it before deciding if I can see anything that needs adding.
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Re:Philip J. Fry

Postby Bothead » Fri Sep 03, 2004 11:20 pm

I really like what I see here.
Before continuing, it may be in your best interest, dear reader, to stop and ponder this. Picture it in your mind's eye. An evil one-eyed midget named Cheatum swam across the Gulf of Mexico wearing a shark fin on his back and then planted a bomb on a boat. Think about that. Let that sink in. Now. Wouldn't you want to buy a wrestling show after seeing this?

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Re:Philip J. Fry

Postby Kif White » Sun Sep 12, 2004 6:00 am

Okay, here's part 2, which I completely forgot about until I saw Pat's great Marge post. This will mostly relate to how Fry interacts with those around him. I'll tackle Leela and Bender first, then write the rest later.

First of all, there's Leela. Along with Bender, Leela is the best and most common companion to Fry. Fry's unrequited love for Leela means he often doesn't know how to act around her, and his attempts to get closer to her will often be countered by rejection. The fact that's she's also his captain means he'll often get told off by her for acting stupid, and he considers her to be overly harsh towards him in both these areas. What initially started out as a case of Fry just wanting to get with Leela evolved over time into something beyond just attraction, and despite his advances being pushed away, Fry has remained perseverant throughout the show's run. He not only considers Leela to be physically attractive, but loves her personality and looks to her intelligence and more emotional side too. Leela has shown signs of liking his sweetness and boyish charms, but doesn't like the fact he's an idiot basically. He's been the only man around her though that is always there for her, and has gone out of his way to prove to her how much he cares for her, be it playing a holophonor, spelling her names with the stars or staying with her non-stop for weeks while she was in a coma talking her back to the real world. His attempts at impressing her have ranged from mediocre to fantastic, and he considers her friendship to be one of the most important things in his life, even if she doesn't reciprocate his feelings. He also wants her to love him for who he is, rather than change himself to somebody he's not, as shown in Parasites Lost. Their overall relationship has got many mixed views from fans and writers, some tending to see more there than there probably is. Realistically speaking, I don't think it's a good idea to read more into the series finale's final moments than is there. While they have no doubt grown closer over the years, there is still nothing between them at series' end. Fry probably inched a notch closer, but the ending gave no more indication of anything further than the endings of The Sting or The Why of Fry did, and I think many Leela-Fry shippers tend to see things that aren't there because it was the last episode. One of the most common mistakes I've seen in Futurama fiction is Fry and Leela hooking up far too quickly over basically nothing, generally in a single chapter of a story that takes place over maybe a day. Because of both their personalities, I don't see them hooking up that quickly, even after the final moments of the last show. I'd suggest any writers tread carefully if they are at all planning to have Fry with Leela in their fic as to how they do it.

Bender is Fry's best friend, and the first one he had upon entering the 30th Century. He'd always wanted a robot as a friend since he was six, and he and Bender seemed to form an instant bond between each other upon meeting. Though it may not be truly mutual to the same degree, Fry really appreciates having Bender as a friend and likes to have his support and input. The fact that they also work together helps, and while Leela tends to be a serious stick-in-the-mud, Bender provides Fry with the mayhem and reckless fun that he appreciates, as well as the stuff that will often get him into trouble on the job. Fry's somewhat idolised friendship of Bender is probably what makes their bond so strong, but it's also something that leaves Fry a little blind towards his robotic friend. Others will often see negative things and attributes in Bender while Fry is completely oblivious to them, and even though he knows Bender is capable of anything, he seems to either ignore or just plain miss the actual actions themselves. Fry will sometimes be an unfortunate victim of Bender's antics, not generally intentionally, but just through Bender's uncaring attitude. But he'll often look past this as well, and while others tend to see a smoking, drinking, stealing, cheating, lying, gambling, whoremonger, Fry generally just sees his best friend.
- Kenneth White

"Know the conflict within before facing the conflict without."

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Re:Philip J. Fry

Postby c_nordlander » Sun Sep 12, 2004 9:39 am

*applauds*

Excellent work, Kenneth. Very sweet, and need I tell you, I fully agree with the issue of the final episode. (If there was any indication of Leela beginning to love Fry there, it was even more understated than at the end of "The Sting".)

Again, very good indeed. Priceless.
Don't switch the blade on the guy in shades,
The Commissar's in town.
Don't masquerade with the guy in shades,
The more you live, the faster you will die.

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