Next time phone ahead

"Next Time, Phone Ahead!" is a segment in Episode 11, written by Tom Ruegger and directed by Eric Radomski.

Synopsis Edit

A flying saucer full of aliens makes a pit stop on Earth, and leaves someone behind: a giant grotesque monster who hides in the trash cans outside of the Douglases' house and devours Dexter. The End.

Steven Spielberg does not particularly like this ending. At first, the writers and crew of Freakazoid! convince him to fall in line with their plan to end the show early this week and show more reruns of Animaniacs. However, Spielberg has other plans, and weaves an oddly familiar story...

It now turns out the the aliens left behind one of their own, Bo-Ron, whom Dexter/Freakazoid befriends. Freak teaches Bo-Ron the ways of Earth, but ultimately hiding him in the Douglas's home proves a little too difficult, and he must be sent home. After a war between long distance carriers, Bo-Ron chooses Sprint as his provider and phones home.

Ultimately, Spielberg and the crew agree that Animaniacs reruns are the better bet after all.


  • Aliens (from the planet Barone's; voiced by Frank Welker)
  • Candice Bergen (caricature/cameo; spokeswoman for Sprint)
  • Billy Bo (guy in woods; voiced by Jess Harnell)
  • Bo-Ron

Freakazoid's Earth Lessons Edit

  • Never run with scissors
  • The four basic food groups are ice cream, candy, cakes, and very large cakes
  • Always ask for a piece of the gross; the net is fantasy
  • Never try to catch a roadrunner; it's impossible
  • Stay out of your father's underwear drawer
  • Eating carrots give you X-ray vision
  • Diane Sawyer seems sincere, but she's actually faking it

Trivia Edit

  • The short is an obvious parody of Spielberg's 1982 film E.T.: The Extraterrestrial.
  • When Bo-Ron is disguised as a gorilla, he says, "pretty Amy." This references Frank Marshall's 1995 film Congo, which featured a gorilla named Amy who had been taught human communication. Ruegger, Rugg and McCann had gone to the theater to see Congo during production of the show, and found it amusingly terrible. They subsequently did another bit at Congo's expense in the last moments of the first season finale.[1]
  • The "telephone wars" were a spoof of a series of TV ads that were airing at the time.[2]
  • Most of the major first season Freakazoid! crew members are caricatured in this episode at the Amblin meeting. They are, in clockwise order (as seen from Spielberg's perspective) Tom Ruegger, Ronaldo Del Carmen, Scott Jeralds, associate producer Haven Alexander, Dan Riba, Emmitt Nervend, Jack Heiter, Mitch Schauer, Jean MacCurdy, Paul Rugg, and John P. McCann.
  • Steff 2
    Steff's outfit when operating the Freak-a-Fall is similar to the original character design by Bruce Timm, with short shorts and a peaked cap.
  • Yakko, Wakko & Dot appear only in reused footage from the Animaniacs main title. Additionally, most of the rest of the Animaniacs cast appears in the overhead shot from the end of the main title: Minerva Mink, Newt, Chicken Boo, Ralph the Guard, Marita, Flavio, Bobby, Squit, Pesto, Pinky, Slappy Squirrel, The Brain, Hello Nurse, Rita, Runt, Skippy Squirrel, Buttons, Mindy, the Mime, Thaddeus Plotz and Dr. Otto Scratchansniff.
  • The Road Runner and Coyote appear in footage from the 1958 short Whoa, Be Gone!
  • Note that the burgers Freakazoid feeds Bo-Ron come from the upscale restaurant "Chateau Blanc" ("White Castle").
  • In the Freak-a-Zone, Freakazoid has an LP by "Herb Alfred" with a naked woman on the cover nearly buried in whipped cream. This references the album Whipped Cream & Other Delights by 1960s trumpeter Herb Alpert and his band the Tijuana Brass.
  • This is the only Freakazoid! short animated by the Japanese studio Studio Junio.

References Edit

  1. Audio Commentary, Episode 11.
  2. Audio Commentary, Episode 11.
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