Publick Nuisance

The secret files of the Ventureverse

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Let's All Hear It For Air Conditioning
Finally, a new episode airs tonight. It is "Twenty Years to Midnight" and it's packed to the rafters (some say over-packed) with action, suspense, exotic locales, cameos, flashbacks and dreams. Stephen Colbert is our big marquee guest star, and Brendon Small has a bit of a cameo. Plus Paul Boocock does the most chillingly accurate rendition of a computer voice you've ever heard. Oh, you don't want to miss this one.

Why were we in reruns for two weeks? Because we're idiots and we take too long to make this show sometimes. Way back when we were racing the clock to complete "Powerless in the Face of Death" for its premiere (because it was the seventh script written and produced and the sixth one we edited) it became clear to us that if we ran all the episodes weekly we would run out of them somewhere around episode 24 or 25, and you fine people would have to wait something like five weeks for the season finale. Rather than do that to you, or push back the premiere date, we've built some rerun weeks into the schedule along the way. I think you get three or four new ones starting this week, then another rerun, then three new ones, then another rerun. Or something like that. If we hadn't shipped the finale episode to Korea so late, things would be different. But they're not. So this is the best we could do. Sorry...

So... San Diego Comicon! What an exhausting, strange, wonderful and humbling experience that was! Doc actually got on a train and made the 3000 mile journey to be there with me this time around, and we did two signings at the Adult Swim table, for which there was a line of people out the door and down the concourse both times. We were honored to meet hundreds of you Venture Bros. fans and, just as I learned last year, found them (you) all to be the sweetest people possible. My thanks to all of you who stopped by to heap praise, questions, comics and the occasional gift upon Doc and myself. I especially enjoy the Corgi toy car of the JFK assassination limousine I received--it already has a special place on my bookshelf. And the bunch of you who donned Hank, Dean, Triana, Monarch, Dr. Girlfriend and The Action Man costumes (yes, The Action Man...can you believe that?!) get the unofficial Astrobase Go! Spirit Award for your fine efforts. We're sorry our heads had to be down most of the time, Sharpies in hand, to sign stuff or we would have chatted more.

And our sincerest apologies go out to the folks who tried to approach us at the end of the Adult Swim panel on Saturday night. Doc and I were none-too-politely yanked off the stage by the convention center security people, stranding a lovely Triana up there and whisking us past a few people holding up DVDs for us to sign. Amongst the throng were two people dressed smartly as The Monarch and Dr. Girlfriend. If any of you are reading this, I'm sorry. They made us leave. They were pretty rude about it, actually. We would have loved to have stopped to meet you and sign anything. In fact, Monarch and Dr. Girlfriend, we had heard about you two in particular all weekend and were disappointed not to catch a glimpse of you prior to that night. All that trouble making costumes better than the ones we wore in the DVD special features and for what? Seriously, it wasn't our fault. I've since been sent several photos of you guys, and the costumes were great. Thanks for the homage.

Speaking of the Adult Swim panel...yes, Dino was quite drunk. It made for some exciting and much-discussed live theater, and no...there are no hard feelings. You should all watch Moral Orel, because it's pretty good.

Other highlights of the show for me were hanging out with Loren Bouchard, Dana Snyder, Ken Plume, Zander Cannon, Brendon Small, Nash Dunnigan, Chris and Shannon Prynowski, Anthony Lioi, Bill Presing, and of course meeting or reconnecting with everyone who works at Adult Swim during the magical boat party. Doc nearly lost his mind when we met Glen Danzig. The one disappointment was that we never did manage to track down a Dr. Strange t-shirt for Doc, try as we might, in size small (apparently, Dr. Strange fans don't aren't built any slighter than a size medium, and a really big medium at that). So if anyone knows how to get one, don't keep it to yourself. Also, a mere hour before I left the convention center, I somehow managed to win an original Charles Addams sketch that was being raffled off. Which is pretty cool.

I also got to pretend I was Chris McCulloch on Sunday, for a panel and signing to promote the upcoming DVD release of The Tick animated series' first season, which, for reasons unknown to us but undoubtedly litigious in nature, will not include the one episode I wrote that season. Which I'm actually almost grateful for, since I still consider it the worst Tick episode ever written.

So what about production?

Doc and I just finished editing the ninth episode of the season. Which kind of sucked at first because it was my least favorite script of them all (written by yours truly, hot on the heels of "Powerless in the Face of Death") and we tried to rush through post-production in order to finish before we left for the convention. Fortunately, we didn't finish, so we were able to pick it up again last week and devote real time to fixing its many shortcomings. Doc busted his ass sprucing it up with After Effects magic and creating a new exposition scene from scratch, we made some prudent cuts, and now I think it came out pretty good. Still not one of my favorites, but not embarrassing. We're jumping right in to the next episode, one of our favorites, posthaste. I had my last get-together of the season with J.G. Thirlwell on Friday night to review his music for the last two episodes, and word is that the first take of the finale is due from Korea this week. Things are really winding down, but there is much yet to do...

I hate to post one of these journals without pictures, but I don't have access to some of the newest footage for screengrabs at the moment, and I seem to have reached my Livejournal storage limit. Attempts will be made to correct these issues before the next entry...

We love you,

P.S. Best wishes go out to Brendon Small, Tommy Blacha and the whole crew at Titmouse Productions, as their new series "Metalocalypse" (formerly "Deathklok") premieres on Adult Swim tonight at 11:45pm EST. You should all watch that, too.

First off, I want to say I love the show, and I always tell everyone I know about it... I bought the DVD as soon as it was out, etc. I'm big fan. I really liked the new episode, except I felt that Hank calling Dean 'Sherlock Homo' was really unnecessary. It felt out of character for Hank, and it also felt like a lazy joke. The show has always seemed to be really smartly written and above dude jokes about homosexuality (even the 'is she?/isn't she?' stuff around Dr. Girlfriend has been balanced by the fact she's one of the more sane/morally centred characters on the show), so it was distracting when it happened. It took me out of the story for a moment when it happened, and that's usually a sign that an element is superfluous and detrimental to the storytelling process.

Anyway, in no way do I think you guys are homophobes or anything like that. If we were friends in real life, I'd go "Dude, that was kind of not cool" and move on. I think it's worth mentioning, though. In the era of Bush, when hysteria around homosexuality is used as a smokescreen while civil liberties for all are slowly being dismantled, every little bit makes a difference.

Other than that, keep up the awesome work. This show is the funniest thing on TV right now.

Obviously I don't agree with you about it being out of character for Hank to say that, since I made him say it. As for being a "lazy joke," well...perhaps, but then I never really considered it a joke. It's just the way 16 year old boys talk, particularly 16 year old boys trying to make fun of other 16 year old boys. Hank's always had a habit of calling Dean a wuss or a spazz, and this was just an extension of that. On South Park, the boys call each other "fag" and so forth all the time, and while it's not what I would call "right," it's an accurate depiction of how boys talk to each other and almost devoid of actual homosexual connotation. While I try to avoid lazy jokes, I don't think Hank is above them.

Almost no character on The Venture Bros. is a pinnacle of morality or someone to emulate, so for putting dumb words in the mouths of dumb characters, I can't take the blame for the Bush administration's intolerance of homosexuals. I can't even begin to wrap my mind around the lunacy and hypocrisy of a bunch of homophobes even imagining for one second that they have a right to discuss whether or not to allow people different from themselves to enjoy their lives as they see fit, much less put said discussion before about 1,000,000 other issues of 1,000,000 times the importance, not the least of which are their own shortcomings in managing the country.

That said, the culture of "hysteria around homosexuality" we live in is pretty alarming. It actually comes as a complete shock to me every time I read the message boards after one of our episodes and see how creeped out some members of the audience are by things like King Gorilla kissing the Monarch. But then, I rather enjoy making those people uncomfortable. When we have our characters question the sexuality of other characters and so forth, I don't see it as providing homophobes with confirmation of their opinions or a mouthpiece for their point of view--we're making just as much fun of them as the characters are of each other, and we're accurately depicting the way some people think. Once again, nobody on this show is any kind of role model.

Re: response to homphobia (Anonymous) Expand
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I really enjoyed the madness that was the podcast with Ken Plume and Dana Snyder, amounst others! MADNESS! Being in Canada, I have to wait for the DVDs to be released, we need a Canadian Adult Swim...I plan on making it to Comic-con next year, so I hope you guys are there again! Cheers!

OMG, I nearly DIED when the space guy came down, and he was TOTALLY Knight of Ni! YES, I caught that right away, I'm such a geek!

Hubby and I totally LOVE this show, we are HUGE fans, and will be 4-evr!

We've also gotten good mileage from the Tom of Finland CHP comment of the Monarch's, and most geeky of all, whenever we have a great thought or create some new idea or achieve a solution, we're all 'Go Team Venture!'

Best. Show. Ever.

Simply brilliant! This is the best episode yet! The last action scene had fantastic animation!! I loved the reference to the AT-AT imperial walker in the diary, the whole list of toys thing was hilarious. I loved Ned's "Boom-Boom" so much that I made my own avatar for it. I was laughing so loud haha

Keep up the great work, these new episodes are fantastic!! IGNORE ME!!

Yeah, everyone else has said so... and so will I.

The show is absolutely wonderful, and "20 Years to Midnight" was fucking brilliant. That was positively a work of art.

If Adult Swim doesn't give you a third season, I'm going to cry openly.

As for Dino at ComicCon, what a prick! Not a smart way to gain new fans or even keep old ones, this guy feels way to sorry for himself. I for one enjoy Morel Orel, it's a pretty original and ballsy show, not to mention fucked up, and that's why I like it. But damn is he an asshole.

Overall, a great episode, this is probably my favorite show right now. So many great cameos, I hope Johnny makes future appearances. You're a great guy to take time out of your busy schedule to talk to us fans, clear matters up, and all that. I friggin love you.

Re: boom boom

I dunno man, I didn't think it wasn't smart. Drunk, maybe, but not stupid. My fanship of D. Stamopolous has only increased since that panel. I also now covet tapes of The Dana Carvey Show, based solely on their writing staff. Look it up, it's an amazing group of people!


I loved it! (course I heart all the Venture Bros and the DVD rocks my pants off)... Although I would love to see more of Triana (she oddly looks a bit like me)... perhaps in a parent teacher conference or a day where your parents came into school and told the other kids what they did... heh. I can TOTALLY picture that.

20 Years to Midnight was great. I thought it was even better than the first episode from last season that featured the Impossibles, including Stephen Colbert's wonderful voice work. And the humor and pacing was a bit different from the super fast-paced previous episode, so that was a good reprieve.

Glad to see JJ again. Ha, he's grown a ponytail now. I like that the running theme this season seems to be Rusty's jealousy of his brother, and how it's causing him really messed up dreams again. And the Sally/JJ thing at the end was sweet. Nice to see maybe someone will treat her right. And JJ being a bit different himself, he probably wouldn't mind her "invisible" powers.

I'm guessing this episode took place about 2 years after "Ice Station Impossible" based on the apparent age of Rocket.

Did I catch more Brock/Rusty subtext than usual, or is it totally ordinary for guys to wear their friend's really old, too-tight shirts?

Yay for Jonny Quest, Colonel Gentlemen, Ghost Pirate, and my favorite, the agent from the beginning of "Tag Sale-You're It" cameos.

I totally thought that was the real Jonas Venture at the end. It was actually sad seeing Rusty and JJ's reaction to him. How cool it would be for the real Jonas to find out he has another son! But yeah, death kind of prevents that.

You sounded like you were having a hell of a lot of fun shouting "Ignore me!" (That was you, right?) The catch phrase will soon be sweeping the nation.

Damn, I had it at one year, but that would be incorrect since Rocket would have been 3 months and wouldn't have the ability to crawl. I don't think it is two years. Probably been one and a half years or less based on the motor skills of The Child and the lack of the ability to say simple words. Then again, you never really hear Rocket say anything.

Loved the new episode. I don't know what I liked more the Jonny Quest scene or Doc Venture actually caring that his dad came back and then finding out he's just an alien.

REturn of the ghost pirate captain was great too. Im still not sure as well why Jonas Venture Jr. was bing a sourpuss. Was it because the captain got them out of trouble?

I want Hadji to show up though at the same time Im scared of what happen to him.

There are some large Doc Strange shirts on ebay. You can find fan made 4xl Dr. orpheus shirt but not even a xl Doc Strange.

The smartest part of the show, for me...

Something I'm amazed nobody else has mentioned; Rusty's reaction to seeing what he believed to be his father, alive and well, seemed, initially, so out of character. Every single thing he's ever said or done with regards to his father has just been scorn and jealousy and resentment, if not outright loathing. Here, though, the facade breaks down, and we see how much of it is sublimated grief over his father dying when he was so young. His anger, when he learned he was being fooled, again a sublimation of his embarassment and disappointment, I think, was great. It was a revealing look into the psychology of the character, who had always SEEMED to be motivated almost entirely by his hatred of his father. Now, it seems, there might be more to it. I love that kind of subtlety and complexity.

I just found your journal Jackson a.k.a. Chris, and wanted to comment that Venture Bros. is easily my favorite TV show since ... gah, I don't know when. Yes, my favorite on All The TV. It's so incredibly funny I've had to change my pants three times just while writing this comment.

I also want to mention how astonished I am at the amount of voices you and Doc do! You guys must work yourselves into paste, dude. I'll take a nap this afternoon in your honor, okay?

astrobase go! pillow?

Did you guys get the Astrobase Go! pillow that I sent last month? My hope is that it arrived safely and is in use.

Wow! That was probably my favorite episode so far.

I don't want to be the guy who makes that dick move of pretending to have great ideas you've just got to use, because I absolutely loved "20 Years to Midnight," but I was wondering if you guys thought of trying to get Tim Matheson to reprise his boyhood role as Jonny Quest.

When I saw the alien at the beginning, my first thought was "Hey, its Triclops from Masters of the Universe!" lol Was that any sort of inspiration for him or was it something else?

I was sort of expecting Rocket to have some sort of odd power even if Dr. Venture is his father. It would be funny if the kid turns out to be some kind of super brilliant scientist who can fully turn invisible and just has the best of everything. Heh.

Also, I thought it was really great to see Brock vacuuming in the opening scene. Someone highly trained in special ops to kill at any given moment doing something so mundane and everyday. Fantastic. :)

Re: I am curious...

Wow, I thought I would be the only one to think of Triclops. That was one of my favorite toys when I got it.

Re: I am curious... (Anonymous) Expand
last night's was hands down the best episode of the new season. maybe it was because of the impossibles and the pirate captain, but i think that it was the most in tune with the overall feeling from season 1. not to say the rest of the season so far hasn't been good, it has, but it just felt very different...can't quite put my finger on it. anyways, great episode, and as always i look forward to next sunday.

i missed metalocolypse...what's the verdict?

What can you say about a show that has two members of Metallica as voices for two of the main band members (but not singing in any songs)?

It was bad ass! If you're in the US try to look it up on Adult Swim Fix.

It seems that a lot of shows are going for the ultimate violence laugh. Besides the violence, the characters are really hardcore metal and clueless about real life issues. If you love metal, violence, and idiocy, then you'll love the show.

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
Deathclock (Anonymous) Expand

20 years to Midnight

I have never written to a show, but that was by far one of the funniest things I have EVER seen. I DVR'd it and watched it twice!!!

I work in LA for an Animation feature film company and just want to say THANKS for the Venture Bros. and offer my "assistance" if you are ever in need to give Doc a break. I freakin LOVE your show.

In a time, for me, that has been difficult, your show has made me laugh harder and made me feel better than anything else.

Thank you and your entire crew. I hope and pray that you will have at least FIVE seasons! And a movie!!!

Paul Neal

Ghost Pirate Guy and JJ

Loved last night's episode. I truly don't know which one is my favorite; they're all so great.

Anyhow, in the scene with the Ghost Pirate Guy and Jonas Jr., GPG says something to the effect of "Don't get all sourpussed now, you got what you wanted..." and JJ looks all depressed. Was there more to the scene that got cut? Or was it the fact that JJ didn't have control of the situation?

Keep up the good work and don't get tired of the best show on any TV network.

Re: Ghost Pirate Guy and JJ

That sequence seems to be the source of quite a bit confusion, it seems. I'd like to know as well what's implied there.

"Twenty Years To Midnight" was really great. I wish my mom had tried harder to stay awake for the Johnny Quest cameo, because she's a big fan of the old JQ cartoons.

Maybe she was trying to ignore you.

jonny (Anonymous) Expand
The one disappointment was that we never did manage to track down a Dr. Strange t-shirt for Doc, try as we might, in size small (apparently, Dr. Strange fans don't aren't built any slighter than a size medium, and a really big medium at that).

That's gonna be tough. Marvel and its licensees (and the various other comic shirt makers) learned in the 90s that nobody bought smalls and mediums. This was partly due to the fashion for freaky big tees (possibly skater-influenced, but I'm old and guessing, so don't take that as gospel), and partly because comic-shop dwellers tend to be beefy. A small girl could look perfectly adorable in an XL Sandman tee and leggings, but a big guy couldn't really make due with the last Wolverine shirt in the shop if it was a small.

Should Doc find a big-ass Doc Strange tee with a design he likes, the best course might be to cut out the design, attach it to a shirt of the correct size with fusible webbing (i.e., iron-on stuff), and secure the edges with fabric paint or stitching. This also works for turning a tee into a sweatshirt, putting a kid's shirt design on a grown-up shirt, making an infant its very own Bauhaus shirt, or any similar conversion.

Hey Publick Dick!, stop dodging this goddamned question and listen up!!!

what the hell was Jonas Junior sourpussing about?? its everyones question!
yes Everyones, even yours!!

The only thing smart about you is your mouth, buddy. The answer's in the show.

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
One in every crowd. (Anonymous) Expand
Dr. Kevorkian (Anonymous) Expand
My girlfriend wants to know about something she noticed in the first episode of the series.

During the musical montage at the beginning, we see Dr. Venture's brother trying out his new arm. Is he testing his arm out for use on "himself"? I didn't notice it, but she brought up "Is he practicing to beat off as a way to test out his new arm?"

I thought it was hilarious and that I wouldn't put it past you all. We watched the episode again, and I looked at it. It's pretty close, but not close enough in my opinion. I suggested that since the language barrier is different to Korea they may not have gotten the joke and didn't do it correctly?

Is she way off on this or is she a keeper? Well, she's a keeper because she'll watch The Venture Brothers with me... but how did her keen eyes do on this one?

Unintentional. But I noticed it looked like that when it came back from overseas, too, so I guess that's what he's doing now.

Um, pretty much the best episode ever. I loved every minute of it. I watched it with my family and I was the only one who recognized that it was Johnny Quest. Like it could be anyone else! The episode was laugh-out-loud hilarious the whole way through, even the second time around on The Fix (which I see as a blessing to fans). Thanks in advance for all of the times my sister will grab something out of my hands and shout "IGNORE ME!"

My 'sourpuss' vote would have to go to JJ's being bummed that it was too easy to get his part of the machine. Who's with me?

Hey Mr. Publick,
We met over at your signing at the san diego comic-con, I asked you about advice on a pitch I had for an animated show that was much in the vein of Venture brothers, and you told me to contact you via your live journal. I know its bothersome to take some time out of your busy schedule to look at things,that I imagine, people swamp you with everyday, but We would love a chance to mail you one of our pitch books and hear what you would have to say about it, any advice, criticism or general thoughts on the idea altogether would be apreciated.
And if you are interested, for shits and giggles, check out our online presence at www.theblackboxproject.com, and the creator of the idea behind the show has an extensive amount of info about it on his blog: dkrall.blogspot.com. I look forward to hearing from you, and also congratulations on how awesome last night's episode was and know that I am mourning the loss of Colonel Gentleman.
thanks again!
the black box project.


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