“…and with no good hip-hop, there’s no RZA, and I lost my virginity to Side A of Wu-Tang Forever.” – Billy Quizboy
Hey, everyone. RobBarracuda here, and it’s time to recap this week’s episode of The Venture Bros., “Maybe No Go”. The structure of this recap will be a bit different from last week. Given how much jumping between plots there was here, I’ve organized it according to the three big storylines presented: Plot A – Quizboy, Peter, and St. Cloud, Plot B – the Venture family, and Plot C – The Monarch and Gary. Hopefully this makes things easier to follow when reading along.
Plot A: Quizboy, Peter, and St. Cloud
Peter White and Billy Quizboy are in their trailer doing science stuff when they’re suddenly besieged by a giant fire-breathing dinosaur robot. The two reach their computer stations to brace for the impact of none other than St. Cloud, reversing electrical signals so they can shock the dinosaur-bot out of commission. St. Cloud shows up on their projection screens proclaiming he’s stolen a valuable red ball from Quizboy and taunting him. Billy and Pete vow to get it back from St. Cloud at a later time, as they all have other things to take care of first.
Billy and Pete make their way to St. Cloud’s mansion and, once inside, have to wait awkwardly while St. Cloud is showering. He teases that he has plans for the ball, which he thinks is an all-powerful artifact when, according to Billy, it’s nothing more than a prop from a Duran Duran video. St. Cloud elects to ignore this and just continues his showering. Once finished, the two are tied up in a lair made to look like the aforementioned Duran Duran video. St. Cloud claims the ball was actually the driving force of the New Romanticism movement of the early ‘80s and drove much of that decade’s culture and significant events. He threatens to send the ball back into the old West with a “time machine” unless Quizboy sells Conjectural Technologies to him. He tries to use his grappling arm to get the ball out of Cloud’s hands, but it doesn’t work and only ends up back in his possession. He agrees to sell the company to him, and Billy & Peter awkwardly head back home feeling defeated after what has transpired. Despite Peter’s objections, Billy firmly believes in the magical power of the ball and its effects on ’80s pop culture and his own life.
Plot B: The Venture Family
While the Ventures are eating breakfast, Brock and Rusty seem concerned that the company’s stock prices and general good will dropped following the latter’s acquisition and firing of all staff. Meanwhile the Pirate Captain, now addicted to tranquilizers, breaks into the New York Zoo and into a polar bear habitat hoping the zoo staff will hit him with some darts to get his fix. However, they just hit the polar bear so he has to stick himself with one of the darts. Brock retrieves him and returns the captain to the Venture’s apartment.
Back at the Venture’s apartment, the Pirate Captain finally wakes up to find himself chained to Hank’s bed, and both Hank and Dean show up with various supplies to help him with his tranquilizer addiction, including beef tomato juice, Fruit By The Foot, and a small adorable kitten. While this is happening, Wide Wale sets up a meeting with, oddly enough, the Fallen Archer. He offers a payment to Wale that is unsatisfactory to him, and the Archer tries to explain it’s because of Dr. Venture’s refusal to pay for League protection, so Wale decides it’s time to teach the doctor a lesson.
While the Ventures stage an intervention for the Pirate Captain, Brock gets a call from Shore Leave warning him of Wide Wale’s impending attack. Unfortunately, because Rusty refused to pay up, Brock is on his own to defend the Ventures. Thankfully he at least has backup from Sergeant Hatred who has a remarkably deep level of intel on Wide Wale’s tactics and battle plan. Meanwhile, the Ventures and the Pirate Captain are locked in the panic room while Rusty goes on about his plans for creating revolutionary technologies through Ven-Tech Industries and changing the nature of the company, but the Pirate Captain tells him to face reality and deal with the current state of events. Dean speaks up and suggests doing both, hiring a secret division to work on Dr. Venture’s technological pipe dreams while still doing what the company’s been successful at doing for so long, with everyone agreeing that it’s a smart idea.
Wide Wale’s forces break into the Ven-Tech building exactly as Hatred predicted, but thankfully they come across a diversion in the form of what appear to be priceless Aztec masks. Brock and Hatred use this opportunity to sneak into Wide Wale’s building and leave a little surprise for him. When he returns, he finds his room filled with an assortment of colored balloons… and the polar bear from earlier in the episode.
Plot C: The Monarch and Gary
At the Monarch’s house, the Monarch is upset that Wide Wale has the exclusive arching rights to Dr. Venture, but Dr. Mrs. The Monarch assures him that it’s only a temporary move until the Guild can successfully rebuild itself, even promising some kinky make-up sex to get his mind off of it. When she leaves the room, the Monarch passes her laptop to Gary and demands that he finds the names of every supervillain that’s next line to arch Dr. Venture so they can pick them off one by one and move up in the rankings.
The two of them reach a small dilapidated house where one of the supervillains lives, a woman named Redusa, and ask her to sign over her space in the queue, but she refuses and forces the Monarch to tranquilize her on the spot. When she comes to, she’s tied up in her sofa and once again asked to sign her spot over. However she quickly reveals her power, and a headful of snakes of course, as she tries to shrink the two of them into oblivion. Luckily, Gary manages to get out of view and dodge her blasts long enough to put a blade up to Redusa’s neck and force her to sign her space away.
Gary does not fuck around.
When the two arrive home, they are greeted by Manolo who clues them in on an important discovery. While they were gone, he found a mysterious metal door that seems to lead to… something. The Monarch sends Manolo on his way and opens the door, and he discovers a massive secret lair hidden underneath the house. Things might just start looking up for the Monarch.
In the post-credits, St. Cloud shows up to Pete and Billy’s home to inform them that he sold Conjectural Technologies for a great deal of money. In an extreme bit of fortunate luck, the buyer turns out to be none other than Ven-Tech Industries. Looks like the two of them are off to New York City.
This was definitely another build-up heavy episode, laying down more future plot points while expanding on some of the details from the premiere. The most interesting plot development we get is the revelation of some kind of alliance between the Crusaders Action League and Wide Wale’s army. Much like conventional mafia stories, it appears the League has to pay him in exchange for… something. Perhaps it’s to keep Wale in check and not impede on their turf, or maybe the League is not as mighty and noble as they seem to think they are. Though I’m guessing since the League appears to function independent of the OSI/Guild, The A-plot with Quizboy and Peter made for a humorous one-off diversion from the main plot, basking in the absurdness of its oddly specific ‘80s references. It does provide a sincere character moment for Quizboy, as he seems to have a deep and abiding love for the New Romanticism iconography that informed his developmental years.
Then there’s the Monarch plot, which continues his quest to regain arching rights against Dr. Venture. The brief fight between him, Gary, and Redusa was the action highlight of the episode, but apart from the secret lair reveal at the end of this plot, there was not much else important to be found here. A solid enough follow-up to the premiere, and I look forward to the next episode where maybe things will pick up a little from here. This is RobBarracuda, and I’ll see you all next week.