SDCC 2012 – Venture Bros.

By bill - August 7, 2012

Once again, Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer, creators of Adult Swim’s Venture Bros, were on hand at Comic Con and took some time to discuss their upcoming Halloween special, Season 5 and why it’s impossible to make fun of GI Joe characters. Check out the Venture Bros. experience at Comic Con!

The long-awaited Season 5 of Venture Bros. won’t premiere until 2013, but this Fall fans can look forward to “The Brimstone Society,” a Halloween special airing on Adult Swim in October. Publick and Hammer, never afraid to make things nice and convoluted, explained that the Halloween special takes place in the middle of the Season 5 premiere, which will air about six months later… Season 5 will actually kick off right where the fourth season closed, but by the time of the Halloween episode, we’ve already jumped ahead in continuity. How do they keep track of their ever-expanding continuity? “We’ve got a big whiteboard, like real writers,” admitted Doc.

While the Halloween special may be light on parodies of super hero characters and tropes, the creators promise it will be both sentimental and relevatory, and Doc hinted “[we’re] really changing the Venture-verse.” Rather than focus on spoofs, the special will target right in on Halloween itself, in the grand tradition of the one-off 30 minute specials from the 80’s (and yes, they’re even working on making a retro “Special” title card, like the one that used to air before the CBS specials in their heyday).

We can look forward to more from the background characters at the OSI, including a focus on the GI Joe-like nature of the organization. According to Jackson, riffing on GI Joe is way more difficult than you’d imagine. As he put it, “The hardest thing about making a fake GI Joe guy is, all the stupid names are taken by GI Joe.” The guys would come up with a really stupid name for one of their characters– like, say “Headshot”– only to go to Wikipedia and find out Hasbro already used the name for an actual character. Doc admitted the character names they went with are pretty good, since the dumbest ones they thought up were already being used in actual Joe continuity.

Publick and Hammer weren’t too forthcoming on Season 5, but did reveal that pre-production is done, and the season will air straight through, unlike Season 4 which was split into two halves, Battlestar Galactica style. We should see most of the characters return, although the guys confirm we won’t get anything on Rusty’s mom, and admit they were kind of foiled in their plan to spoof Watchmen’s characters and costumes. Jackson would love to include dance rock band Pulp further into Venture continuity (their classic “Like a Friend” played over the last act of Season 4’s finale, and while that’s not a certain thing there’s an established mutual respect between the Venture guys and Jarvis from Pulp. In fact, Jarvis gave a shout out to Jackson and Doc at a recent show in NYC. The band dedicated “Like A Friend” to the guys, and Doc– who was in the nosebleed section– caused a scene when he freaked out about the shout out. Everyone around him had no idea what was going on… who gets a shout out from the band and sits in the back row?

The Halloween special is promising to be a great return for the Venture team, and Season 5 is one of the most anxiously awaited series of 2013. While Season 6 is thankfully already a go, there’s no solid idea when it will happen. Jackson and Doc have a rather notorious lag time between their seasons, finally getting to the fifth season about ten years after the series premiere. The trend will probably continue, as Doc explained this is part of their plan to keep the show from getting stale… which is absolutely different than keeping it fresh. He’d rather have people hear about the new season and say “Oh wow, Venture Bros? I thought that got cancelled!” If the end product is as awesome as the first four seasons, the guys can take as long as they need to do what they call the “Magic that we do every two years.”

The Venture Bros. Halloween Special will debut this October on Adult Swim!

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