Season 2 of Venture Bros. ended with a big cliff hanger, much like season 1. Dr. Girlfriend, after marrying the Monarch, said to him “Monarch, I’m” then the camera cuts to outside, with Monarch exclaiming “What?!” Fans speculated during the two years between seasons 2 and 3 as to what she said. Again, due to traditional animation techniques (hand drawn), it takes nearly two years for a season. Season three didn’t premier until 2008. The two obvious choices for what she said was either she was pregnant, or really a man (one of the running jokes on the show, given her deep voice). Given the quality of the show, it wouldn’t be something as simple.
The first episode focused on the the Monarch and Dr. Girlfriend and their interrogation (more like a crucible) from the Council of 13, the head of the Guild of Calamitous Intent. Here we learn how the two met, while Dr. Girlfriend became Phantom Limb’s number two, the monarch was a henchman for him, then struck out on his own and stole her. Though not directly answered, it’s revealed that Dr. Girlfriend was ordered by the Guild to get the Monarch to stop arching Dr. Venture.
This sets up one of the main themes of the season. The Monarch tries several different protagonists to arch this season, though none of them work out. He ends up murdering many of them in cold blood (which is highly against Guild law). This includes Dr. Dugong in “Tears of a Sea Cow”, who has his cute cuttlefish. He feels empty, unable to arch Dr. Venture, his true nemesis. Dr. Mrs. The Monarch comes up with a brilliant plan to get The Monarch a new nemesis, Dr. Jonas Venture Jr., Rusty’s brother.
Another common theme seemed to be fleshing out the supporting cast. Dr. Venture is given a new villain, Sergeant Hatred. Hatred has been mentioned several times in the past, even making one or two background appearances. One of his running jokes is his penchant for pedofilia, which he makes clear as he is court ordered to stay 500 ft away from minors. Billy Quizboy and Pete White are given an episode, “The Invisible Hand of Fate”, explaining their past and how they came together. This episode not only shows how Billy lost his hand and eye, but how Phantom Limb became a villain.
A new character was introduced in “The Buddy System.” Rusty runs a day camp to make a few dollars. A punk teenager shows up, Dermott, running his mouth constantly. He rattles Brock’s cage, and tries to get Dean to beat him up. At the end of the episode, it’s strongly alluded that Brock his is father, though there’s no confirmation this season. Dermott becomes friends with Hank, and makes a few more appearance.
The third to last episode of the season, “ORB”, was a little strange. It seemed to shift gears, making it like a heavy mythology episode of a serialized show. There is a device, the titular orb, that was hidden through a bunch of random clues in the Rusty Venture cartoon, only to be discovered by Billy. Brock’s actual mission wasn’t to guard Rusty, but one of the clues. If Rusty found the orb, he was supposed to kill him. We also learn about previous people in the Venture line, their bodyguards, and how the Guild was formed. It was really heavy material for this show. The episode was good, just sticks out as an odd duck. This lead into the finale.
The season culminates in a giant battle at the Venture compound. Brock is being hunted by the O.S.I., he believes to be captured or killed for not terminating Dr. Venture. The Monarch, after finding a loophole in Guild law, is heading towards the compound as well. After Brock fends off three world class assassins in amazing fashion, he gets both the O.S.I. and butterfly brigade to converge on the compound. After an all out battle, with a twist or two, Brock quits the O.S.I. As he leaves, the Monarchs car explodes, killing henchmen 24 and ending season 3.
Dr. Impossible made a few appearances this season. Previously voiced by Stephen Colbert, he was unable to return. Or too expensive. Pfft, Mr. High and Mighty America. Bill Hader replaced Colbert as Impossible.
This season is a bit of a departure from the previous ones, focusing more on the supporting characters. Doc Hammer and Jackson Publick are really adapt at this, making them interesting, and most importantly, funny. I wonder how much of this was thought out before hand when they created these background characters. I don’t think this season was as strong as two, it was still entertaining while fleshing out the apparently complex history and mythology of the show. Plus, Brock being Brock.
Holy crap there were a lot of dongs this season.