Word is that Comedy Central has finally buckled down and ordered a dozen new Futurama episodes. Is that a good thing?

Despite all its faults Futurama is still better than much of what's on Comedy Central, let alone animation, on the flip side, is it really good enough?

When FOX cancelled Futurama to make way for Malcolm in the Middle, the result was fan outrage. Nearly unanimous fan outrage. There was only one problem, Futurama had already run four seasons and its last season stunk worse than that Season 4 episode about farting robots and global warming. There were still good moments, but like a lot of shows on the cusp of cancellation there was a lot more bad than there was good.

And that's the truth about cancelled shows, they may have a lot of good points, but they've also got a lot of bad. Yes Futurama's final season had great classics like Jurrasic Bark, The Why of Fry and The Devil's Hands Are Idle Playthings. On the other to get to them we had to sit through the aforementioned Crimes of the Hot, Kif Gets Knocked Up and A Taste of Freedom. Not to mention Why Bender Should Be on TV.

Since then with ample time, low pressure and virtually no editorial control, Futurama's producers got to create four sets of DVD movies. And only one of them, Beast With a Billion Backs, was anywhere in a league with Jurassic Bark or Insane in the Frame. Instead we got the same tics, prolonged gags that went nowhere, characters who had been long ago beaten to death, Mom, President Nixon making pointless apperances, and Bender hogging screentime, all as usual.

So while Futurama is making a comeback, like the Simpsons before it, it shows every sign of having drained its creative batteries and running on inertia into the black hole of used up gags, with a blank check written for it by adoring fans who remember the good times and censor out the bad.