I can't find any logical explanation of the key point that makes all of the Futurama series run, at least in the episodes I've seen.

I guess that at least Fry's family reported his disappearance to the police once he didn't return that night from his job.

Once done, the most logical thing that would have happened would be the police going to Mr Pannuci's shop where they would have been told that Fry hadn't returned from his delivery to the cryogenics lab. The police would have gone there to search for clues, they would have found him, they would have opened the cryogenics tube and well... none of Futurama would have happened.

But even worse than that is... does no employee in the cryogenics lab realize that there's a person in a tube who on the previous day wasn't in the lab, and they don't even have the slightest idea of who he is?

Maybe Nibbler somehow managed to bribe the police or the employees or used some memory manipulation technique so people wouldn't care about that, but I haven't seen evidence for that.

So, how was his forced cryogenization not discovered?

  • 2
    IIRC Nibbler had something to do with the whole thing, so maybe using his nibbler powers? Commented Dec 8, 2016 at 22:53
  • 6
    Easy, poor security, and apathetic techs. After all, Fry is in two different tubes, only one looks a little different.
    – CBredlow
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 0:48
  • 1
    "What our story needs is an ironic unexpected event that will propel the hero into conflict!" Commented Dec 10, 2016 at 13:47

5 Answers 5


His parents didn't call the police.

Fry: Aww. So you froze yourself to come look for me?

Michelle: No, I did it to get a fresh start. I didn't know what had happened to you -- no one did. The police were going to conduct a search but your parents felt it was a waste of taxpayer money.

Fry: That's the same reason they kept me out of school. So, no one even cared that I was gone?

The Cryonic Woman

But they did conduct their own (incompetent) investigation.

Mr. Fry: Are you the cryogenisist who called about our son's dog?

Cryogenisist: Oh, you must be the Frys. Yeah, he's right over there.

[He points to Seymour who is still barking at Fry's freezer.]

Mrs. Fry: Sorry we're late. We all got sick from eating bad baloney.

Mr. Fry: Y2K!

[Mr. and Mrs. Fry stand by Fry's freezer but don't see him.]

Mrs. Fry: What's he so worked up about?

Mr. Fry: He's just upset 'cause our boy's missing. C'mon, you overgrown rat. Lead us to Philip.

Jurassic Bark

So, why didn't they track back to Fry's last delivery (and thus realise that he was last seen at the Cryogenics facility)? Because Fry is holding Panucci's handwritten note with the address and since Fry was just kicked out by his gf, has no friends, an apathetic boss and only visits his family infrequently, it may have been days or even weeks before his absence was noted, more than enough time for Panucci to have forgotten where he sent Fry on his last delivery.

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  • "Because Fry is holding Panucci's handwritten note with the address." They could have asked Panucci then, right?
    – user54952
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 9:04
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    I beleive I will now watch every episode of Futurama again... again.
    – Daft
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 9:22
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    @Alex How many deliveries do they get a day. I would doubt he would remember the address
    – user20310
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 12:09
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    @hobbs - Everyone's a cricket
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 21:39
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    This doesn't address why the cryogenics facility didn't notice an extra body. Specifically, an extra body who hadn't paid for 1000 years' storage!
    – Paul
    Commented Dec 11, 2016 at 18:14

The other answers cover the main part of your question, but with respect to the techs in the cryo lab paying no attention to the new resident...

I think anyone who has been a "cog in the machine" employee would be able to tell you that nothing makes your life easier than the almighty shrug:

Tech 1: That tube was empty when I left yesterday.

Tech 2: Huh. *shrug* I didn't do it.

Tech 1: Weird. Wanna get lunch?

This seems especially true in the Futurama universe, where apathy seems rampant, to say the least.


In one of the episodes Fry's father explains that it was a waste of police resources to look for Fry and they call off the search. I believe it was in the episode Jurassic Bark where Seymour, Fry's dog, leads them to the cryogenization facility.


The big thing that all the other answers missed is:

A Nibbler Did It (paraphrased TV Tropes page link omitted).

Nibbler was the one who ordered the pizza. He was the one who convinced Fry to push himself into the cryopod (and did it the first time, before Fry changed the timeline).[1]

Even if he later returned to Vergon 6, the Nibblonians had a vested interest in Fry surviving the next millennium, and both advanced technology and telepathic powers to back it up.

Nibblonian telepathy explains why Fry's parents didn't notice when they were standing right next to the tube, having been shown to both erase memories and alter current perceptions. And presumably they are also why the building survived the two subsequent levelings of most of New York City.


You should watch "Bender's Big Score". It shows Bender, while possessed by an alien scammer's virus, being sent back in time to kill Fry, but Fry follows him back to stop him; one thing leads to another, with the net result that a time-duplicate of Fry picks up Fry's life right where he left off. No one is searching for him because he isn't gone (yet).

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    Or is that: "because he isn't going to be had been gone anymore", darn it now I have to consult Dr. Dan Streetmentioner's Time Traveler's Handbook of 1001 Tense Formations.
    – Bent
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 14:53
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    Be aware that this was a paradoxical timeline. We know that Fry never returned (in the Prime timeline) because he never collected Seymour
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 17:12
  • Of course he returned - he came home after searching for the narwhal 'Lilu', was nearly killed by Bender, realised he actually WAS his supposed rival 'Lars', slipped into the cryogenics lab and hid in his girlfriend's tube to get to the future.
    – PMar
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 19:16
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    [and incidentally, when he was nearly killed by Bender, that's when Seymour became flash-fossilized]
    – PMar
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 19:17
  • @PMar Yes, but that's a paradoxical timeline, Fry never returned to the Prime (main) timeline.
    – AStopher
    Commented Dec 11, 2016 at 17:59

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