I know from reading Jackson Publick's LiveJournal that producing The Venture Bros. this season has been an arduous task. He, Doc Hammer, and the rest of the AstroBase crew have been working on season 4 since at least summer 2008, and even at that there was a lengthy break in the middle and a shorter break before the season finale. While I give the guys all the credit in the world for busting their ass to produce one of my favorite shows, I can't help but wonder when burnout will start to set in. There's already talk in fan circles that "Operation: P.R.O.M." could just as easily be a series finale as a season finale. But speculation over the fate of the show can wait for another day. Let's first take a look back at the first-ever one-hour Venture Bros. episode and try to figure out w
So hey, I'm a little late on this review. I know that seems inexcusable since it is the season premiere, but my damn DVR didn't record this when it was supposed to. And if it's not on my DVR, it doesn't exist. But enough of that...VENTURE BROS. IS BACK!!%$#! I think the question I asked as season 3 ended - in what direction do Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer want to take this show? - has been answered, at least on the basis of "Blood of the Father, Heart of Steel". They're going to get even deeper into the show's characters, while at the same time strengthening their geek cred. And we're also going to get plenty of laughs. So we got that going for us, which is nice. (more…)
I think I'm gonna need some more time to process the season 3 finale of The Venture Bros., but for right now I can't help but feel a bit let down. I think that's because Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer haven't yet figured out what they really want their show to be. Do they want it to be an homage/parody of the action/adventure genre, or do they want to fully invest in their own universe and mythology? All signs pointed to the latter as season 2 progressed, and that was reinforced this season with so many plot- and backstory-laden episodes. The laugh-out-loud moments decreased in general this year, but the payoff was ostensibly a series of richer stories and an opportunity to appreciate the show with more than ironic detachment. (more…)
No more flashbacks, no more character sketching, and no more filling in questionably important bits of history - the season finale of The Venture Bros. is all about moving forward. All the buildup and all the backstory is done, so I hope you were paying attention. Actually, if you think about it almost all of this season's back end has really been the finale, since most of the episodes have picked up right where previous ones left off. So in that sense, everything from "Tears of a Sea Cow" forward has been part of one big story arc. (One caveat before we move forward: the first few minutes of this week's episode were cut for the television broadcast. If you want to see the entire episode uncut, you can watch it on adultswim.com.) In the cold open, things look bleak for the
Setup episodes can be very tricky to pull off. They've got to provide enough information to set the stage for what is to come, and yet be entertaining in and of themselves. Too much information and the story becomes cluttered, and not very fun to watch. But make things too subtle, and the episode can seem like a one-off at best, a throwaway at worst. So how does "ORB", an obvious setup episode, fare? Pretty well, thankfully. The mystery kicks off in the cold open, as the too-smart-for-his-own-good Billy Quizboy pulls a Beautiful Mind and unravels a hidden message in his copies of the old Rusty Venture cartoon. It's a set of coordinates leading to the Venture Compound, in what turns out to be Brock's herb garden. When Brock refuses to help dig, it's up to Hank to do the work
I came to an important realization while watching last night's episode of The Venture Bros. - of all the characters in the Ventureverse, the pair of Pete White and Master Billy Quizboy is my least favorite. So read my take on this episode with that in mind. As with the premiere episode of the season, "The Invisible Hand of Fate" is devoted to flashbacks intended to provide insight into some characters (in this case, the aforementioned Pete White and Master Billy Quizboy). We learn that the pair were in cahoots on a quiz show (Quizboys, which White hosted) in a setup obviously recalling the 1950s game show scandals. When Billy's scam is uncovered, the pair are exiled and take to the underground quiz circuit to raise money for a trip to Venture Industries (where they hope to gain e...