THE VENTURE BROS. Season Five Blu-Ray Review
It’s back to the Venture compound for more crazy shenanigans for our hapless heroes in The Venture Bros. Season Five. It’s been three years since the events of Season Four ended. Three. Frakking. Years. And what do creators Doc Hammer and Jackson Publick have to show for it? Eight episodes.
Eight episodes may not be entirely correct, but that is the official listing on the DVD and Blu-Ray packaging. During the long hiatus, Adult Swim aired “From the Ladle to the Grave: The Shallow Gravy Story,” a Behind the Music-esque episode documenting the birth of Hank and Dermott’s band Shallow Gravy. This episode also included the premiere of their music video “Jacket.”
Some time after that, Adult Swim released yet another episode titled “A Very Venture Halloween.” Unlike “The Shallow Gravy Story,” which was more or less a throw-away episode, “A Very Venture Halloween” is where Dean finds out that he and Hank are clones, several generations removed. This serves as a spur for Dean’s change of attitude and his season-long inner conflict. Also, J.K. Simmons was in it. That’s always a fun time.
The episode that really set the tone for the whole fifth season was, of course, the first episode, “What Color Is Your Clean Suit?” It introduced a slightly higher quality of animation, a feat that somehow improved from the already spiffy-looking Season Four The once ancillary characters that appeared every now and then moved up on the main cast list, but at the expense of other regulars taking the back seat. Also suffering this season were certain plot points that left us hanging in Season Four. One loose end was resolved, whether or not Molitov Cocktease and Monstroso survived their seemingly fatal fall off a cliff. The nefarious Investors plot point that has yet to be resolved, or even mentioned.
Season Five did get around to investigating just who were the members of the council of the League of Calamitous Intent. Unfortunately, we’ve yet to see an end to this major plot point as well.
Truly, out of a only eight episodes in this season, only two were the weakest: “Spanakopita” and “Momma’s Boys.” They weren’t bad, they just weren’t as strong as the others. In the future, we’d like to see Quiz Boy’s nemesis, St. Cloud, to be less of a sniveling snob, whose goal seems to want to merely annoy everyone, and be more of proactive villain with a touch of Lex Luthor-ness.
Is buying The Venture Bros. Season Five on Blu-Ray or DVD worth it? First of all, you get the pleasure of listening to such voice talents of Aziz Ansari, Paget Brewster, Wyatt Cenac, Kevin Conroy, Bill Hader, John Hodgman, Gillian Jacobs, Kate McKinnon, Tim Meadows, J.K. Simmons, and Brendon Small. You also get the two extra episodes we talked about, deleted and extended scenes, a digital version of Season Five, and the “coop de grace,” commentary on every single episode with Doc Hammer and Jackson Publick.
At the suggested retail of $31.97 for the Blu-ray, and $24.98 for the two-disc DVD set, you’d have to be a pretty committed fan by now — or a completionist. Also, it’s only eight episodes. Think of it this way: it’s like paying $60+ for 13 episodes, but they’re 13 episodes of Game of Thrones. Take that however you like.
The Venture Bros. Season Five is available starting today on Blu-Ray and DVD now in a video store near you. Or, you know, a place that sells videos. Who the hell goes to an actual video store? Do they even exist anymore?