LaBarbara Conrad

Hermes Conrad

Hermes Conrad (Born A.D. 2954) is a character in the Futurama animated series. He is voiced by Phil LaMarr.

Background

Appearance and personality

Hermes is a grade 34 bureaucrat from Jamaica (though Fry believed for quite some time that he was some kind of "outer space potato man"). He manages the Planet Express delivery business with responsibilities that include paying bills, giving out legal waivers, and notifying next of kin. In direct contrast to most stereotypical portrayals of Jamaicans, he is an uptight workaholic (Hermes is disappointed by the fact that he is anal only 78.36% of the time). This character trait was first noticed when he was four-years-old, when a hurricane hit Kingston and threw his alphabet blocks out of order. More stereotypically, he is a Rastafarian, as seen by his invoking Jah in "How Hermes Requisitioned His Groove Back". Fry also refers to him as a "Rastafarian Accountant" to which Hermes replies, "Tally me Banana."

Hermes frequently admonishes the staff for not working hard enough. For some unstated reason, he strongly dislikes Doctor Zoidberg. Zoidberg once recommended a relaxation spa to Hermes and his wife which turned out to be a disguised forced-labor camp, and Hermes once forced Zoidberg to pay for damages to the Planet Express Corporation building which were actually caused by Leela. Then again, Hermes and Zoidberg participated in "a little just-friends spooning" while on a camping trip ("Spanish Fry").

Hermes is also known to dislike labor unions, once referring to Labor Day as created by "fat-cat union gangsters", though seconds later he exclaims "Hot damn, a day off!" upon learning that it was that very day ("When Aliens Attack"), and consulting Glurmo about firing the entire crew and replacing them with Grunka-Lunkas for half the pay ("Fry and the Slurm Factory").

Phrases

When surprised, Hermes often utters a rhyming exclamation, such as "Sweet gorilla of Manila", "Sweet lamprey of Santa Fe", "Sweet lion of Zion!", "Sweet cow of Moscow!", "Sweet Guinea Pig of Winnipeg!", "Sweet Bongo of the Congo!", "Sweet Yeti of the Serengeti!", "Great three-toed sloth of ice planet Hoth!" and "Sweet Squid of Madrid!" After he was talked out of killing himself in "How Hermes Requisitioned His Groove Back" he was too distraught to rhyme, merely whimpering "Sweet something of... someplace". He also tends to make analogies to current situations involving green snakes and sugarcane: "Our electricity bill is climbing faster than a green snake up a sugarcane", "I'm hungrier than a green snake in a sugarcane field" and "The pressure will crush you like a green snake under a sugarcane truck". He sometimes exclaims "Haile H. Selassie", which is both a reference to Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia and a Rastafarian-inspired parody of the more Christian curse, "Jesus H. Christ". He has also invoked "Ras H. Tafari". Occasionally, Hermes will shout things that reference "The Banana Boat Song" (better known as "Day-O!"). In one episode, Fry describes him as a "Rastafarian accountant", to which he replies "Tally me banana!" In another episode, he was hit in the head, causing him to shout "Daylight come!". In "Three-Hundred Big Boys", when Hermes gives his son a gift which he doesn't want, he angrily states that he "tallied almost three-hundred bananas on this entertainment product".

Bad habits

Throughout the series, many of his comments imply that he smokes marijuana (one such being a "Shirley Hemple" he ordered at a bar, or the time when his son stole a "cigar" from his dad - "That's not a cigar... and it's not mine"), though he tries to hide this from his co-workers. He also claims an "oregano" farm as a tax deduction and announced that he "must flush some things" before an inspection. Hermes is also the only one to react when Fry picks up a bong in "Bendin' in the Wind".

On more than one occasion he has hinted to be willing to kill his co-workers without any reason. For example, in the episode "The Farnsworth Parabox", when the ship was being flown to the Sun and her crew about to be discarded into it, Hermes had second thoughts about whether he should or shouldn't save them. Earlier in the same episode, he gives Leela a gun and tells her to "Use it to shoot those guys" (i.e. Fry, Bender and Zoidberg). Leela then responds "Right... if they try to look into the box" to which Hermes replies: "Whatever..." On another occasion, when Leela is going to get a permit for her mutant parents to visit the surface, Hermes asks her to pick him up a license to kill. When she asks "Bare hands or weapon?" he responds with "What does piano wire count as?"

Limbo

Hermes was once an Olympic limbo athlete. He was competing at the 2980 Olympic Games for the Earth team when a little boy ran onto the field. The boy wanted to be "just like Hermes", but broke his back while attempting to limbo and apparently died, taking into account what Hermes says. This event traumatized Hermes and he could not bring himself to limbo again until decades later, when he found it necessary to slide under a nearly-closed door aboard the space cruise ship Titanic in order to save the lives of himself and his co-workers. His confidence (though not his physique) restored, Hermes came out of retirement to compete for Jamaica at the 3004 Olympics, after the original team got detained at the airport for "other interests" (again, implied to be marijuana), though he was bested by longtime rival Barbados Slim, to whom Hermes' wife LaBarbara Conrad was once married, and (twice) temporarily gets back together with in Bender's Big Score.

The ultimate penalty

In the episode "How Hermes Requisitioned His Groove Back" he suffered a breakdown, and was sent on paid vacation (considered the "ultimate penalty" in his profession) with LaBarbara. Unfortunately, the spa he chose as a vacation spot was actually a forced labor camp, with the recreational activities including pushing mining carts. Hermes, his bureaucratic bearing restored, reorganized the labor camp for greater efficiency, after which all physical labor was done by a single Australian man. Hermes then organized the "Master IN Pile" in the central bureaucracy, but finished 2 seconds early and was demoted. But he discovers a mistake made by his replacement bureaucrat and is promoted back to one grade below his original grade.

Decapitation

In Bender's Big Score, Hermes limbos under one sword that only slices his belly, but as he begins to gloat he is accidentally decapitated by another sword (which was crossed with the first one over the Planet Express' fireplace). Headless, Hermes is left depressed when LaBarbara reveals that, being "two halves of a dad", she's dating again her ex-husband Barbados Slim. A time replication of his body is brought to the future by Bender but Zoidberg mistakenly reattaches his head backwards. During Leela and Lars' wedding, Hermes is hit in the eye with a pen and trips over the support for an electric chandelier, a shard of which decapitates Hermes whose body is then crushed and electrocuted by the chandelier (revealing publicly that time-duplicates are doomed to die). However, Hermes' severed head comes to good use when its brainwaves are used to guide the fleet of the scammers' victims. After this, Hermes is rewarded when LaBarbara returns to her hero, whose head was later reattached by professional doctors.

Family

LaBarbara Conrad

(Voiced by Dawn Lewis) - Hermes Conrad's wife. She is considerably taller and slimmer than Hermes and is usually seen wearing revealing clothing. LaBarbara was previously married to Barbados Slim, a tall, muscular athlete (whom she refers to as "that mahogany god") who won the limbo gold medal in the 3004 Olympics. She accompanies her husband on a trip on the Starship Titanic and another to Spa 5, which turns out to be a slave labor camp. She and her husband often refer to each other only as "husband" and "wife," although in on the Starship Titanic he referred to her simply as "Hot Woman", or simply "Woman" in Bender's Big Score. In "The Route of All Evil", Hermes and LaBarbara's home is shown as very sumptuous. She temporarily leaves Hermes for Barbados Slim in Bender's Big Score after he is decapitated, believing he would be unable to properly provide for the family as a mere head, only to return to him after Hermes utilizes his thinking skills to save Earth from a hostile takeover.

Dwight Conrad

(Voiced by Bumper Robinson) - 12 year old son of Hermes and LaBarbara Conrad. He has a friendship with Cubert Farnsworth. Dwight takes after his father in many ways, such as finding accounting and bureaucracy more entertaining than more conventional sources of fun. Dwight sports dreadlocks and a T-shirt with the Jamaican flag on it. In the episode "The Route of All Evil", a bully throws Dwight's lunch pack into a black hole he has made for his science project; the way in which Dwight screams "My Manwich!" is very similar to the way Hermes screams the same words when Bender uses his sandwich as fishing bait in "The Deep South". Phil LaMarr occasionally provides his voice whenever Bumper Robinson is unavailable. Briefly in Bender's Big Score , Dwight is renamed as Dwight Slim ,as opposed to Dwight Conrad. This angers Hermes , who exclaims "You took his name?!".

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