Venture Bros. Wrapup: “Home Is Where the Hate Is” (S03E04)

As depressing as it is to contemplate, we’re now just about one-third of the way through season 3 of The Venture Bros. I’ll let that sink in for a moment before diving into the newest episode, “Home Is Where the Hate Is.”

Sgt. Hatred in Home Is Where the Hate Is"

This week picks up the thread of the season premiere, as we see how the Monarch is adjusting both to married life and life without Dr. Venture as his arch-nemesis   He and his new bride, Dr. Mrs. The Monarch, are the newest residents of Malice, a housing development for supervillains.  But first the Monarch undertakes some housecleaning, which is to say he burns anything that reminds him of his wife’s relationship with Phantom Limb.

But it turns out that what’s really bothering the Monarch isn’t Phantom Limb; it’s his new post-Venture life.  Depressed, he declines an invitation to a party thrown by Sgt. Hatred and opts to flip through a picture book of prospective archenemies.  Sgt. Hatred’s party, incidentally, is to celebrate his new Guild assignment – Dr. Venture’s archenemy. Hatred and his troops drop in on Venture Industries and are warmly…uh, received, by Brock Samson (although we sadly only witness the aftermath).

The B plot concerns the continuing tensions between Henchmen 21 and 24, and the Murderous Moppets.  24 was stabbed in the gut, but we’re left to guess who really started it this time.  The Monarch agrees to let the Moppets stay in his new house temporarily, but the henchmen are banished back to the flying cocoon.  24 soon gets saddled with babysitting Hank and Dean, who get booted from Sgt. Hatred’s party for being too young (“I’m not allowed to be within 50 feet of a beautiful minor.”).

Before long the Moppets are back on 21 and 24’s trail, and the pair (with Dean & Hank) must avoid becoming human pin cushions.  While that’s taking place, Hatred’s party goes from lame to lamer.  The Monarch tries to spice things up by getting a good speech in, but even that bit villainy is denied him.  But he has one last hope – an explosive device he planted on Dr. Venture.

It all comes to a head as the Moppets seemingly close in on their prey, and the Monarch finally has it out with Sgt. Hatred over some long-simmering tensions (in a hot tub no less).   And genital-covering black bars?  Brother, there’s a ton of them!

In short, a good episode and a nice rebound from the laff-deficient “The Invisible Hand of Fate.” The Monarch, as usual, was the star of this one as he had the lion’s share of funny lines.  It was good to get more Hank and Dean, but I’m hoping for at least one episode centered on them this season.

Final grade: B

Best moments/lines:

  • “What are these, little league trophies?  And all these self-help books?”
  • “You know what’s insane?  That you slept with a guy who read The Secret.  You want the secret?  Yeah, your ex-boyfriend’s pathetic.  Shhh, don’t tell anyone.  Secret!
  • “I’ll be sure to put that on my To Don’t list.”
  • Sgt. Hatred’s entrance at Venture Industries was quite impressive.
  • “I’ll say it again – lush!”
  • “You don’t need to discuss with henchmen.”
  • “What are you two, cats?  You’re not sleeping at the foot of my bed.”
  • Hatred shooting Dr. Venture with the rubber bullet, and Dr. Venture’s subsequent anguish, was classic.  “We got a bleeder here, 86 the non-lethal.  We’re going full Nerf on this one.”
  • “No offense, but I’m in no mood to play babysitter to the Ritalin twins tonight, OK?”
  • “Ah, sweet infinity shot though.”
  • “Damn, even his dot is fat.”
  • The Monarch troop tracker sounding like Pac-Man for the Atari was great, having Hank do the sound effect was greater.

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