The final episode of Venture Bros. Season 5 aired on July 21, 2013. In January 2015, Adult Swim released a Venture Bros. special episode titled “All This and Gargantua-2”. It was the first piece of Venture-universe animation released in several years, and it moved the plot forward in a myriad of ways. The Guild of Calamitous Intent and a new Council of 13 was established by Phantom Limb and Dr. Girlfriend, which left The Monarch out in the cold. Jonas Jr. died and left billions to Dr. Venture and the boys, who were set to relocate in New York City in their new compound.
The Venture Bros. is such a complex show, and it’s been so long since it last aired on television, that Adult Swim released a couple recap videos and promotional materials in order to re-orient its fan in the universe. It’s all fun, but Henchman 21’s summation of Season 5 is the most helpful, and the most hilarious bit of PR material released by the company. Additionally, every single episode of The Venture Bros is available to stream on Adult Swim’s website.
Season 6, which will premiere on Adult Swim on January 31st, will follow the Venture family’s new adventures in New York City. The pilot episode, which we were able to watch, sets up quite a few new conflicts.
It seems Dean and Hank are still dealing with the realization that they’re clones in their individual ways. Hank is styling himself as a 2014-era Justin Bieber and is out chasing ladies, and Dean is struggling to mature and move on, even visiting a local university with the hopes of applying.
Season 6 begins just moments after the action of last January’s special, with the Venture boys standing over their father and wondering why he fainted with a huge grin on his face. Once it’s established that the family is now worth billions, the show rockets into a new, revamped opening song — the only lyrics are “Rusty’s back on top now” — and the entire Venture clan is transported to New York City. The boys have brand new bedrooms with double sized beds. Dean’s looks normal, but Hank discovers that his room was designed for a little boy, or, as it is eventually revealed, a super strong, mentally handicapped mutant named Ned. He stands for a moment looking at the primary colored wallpaper and a chalkboard over his bed that still says “Ned’s Place” before the show quickly moves on. Dr. Venture fires JJ’s entire team, and the family dances in the living room before having breakfast.
Before long, the Venture Bros.’ version of the Avengers show up — Hank literally says, “Hey Pop, pretty much the Avengers are on our porch!” — and they try to get Dr. Venture to hire them for protection. It doesn’t work, but it looks like the Crusaders’ Action League, including spoofs of Thor, Captain America, and Hawkeye, will be a large presence this season. This is a great move for satirical Venture Bros., which began as a lampoon of classic cartoons like Johnny Quest; taking on the hugely popular MCU promises to make the show feel relevant and contemporary. The Venture Bros. has established a long history of commentary on super-villains and heroes and comic book culture, so it’s only appropriate to see it go head to head with today’s most talked-about characters.
Without giving anything important away, Brock Samson shows up ten minutes into the season premiere, and everyone’s excited to see him. Dr. Venture picks up a speciality jumpsuit that looks exactly the same as all of the others suits he’s ever owned. Dr. Girlfriend becomes even more entrenched in Guild politics, and The Monarch picks up a second henchman who can only communicate with Henchman 21, who studied Spanish using Rosetta Stone during the break between seasons.
H.E.L.P.eR. is adorably rendered useless by the Venture family’s new and improved robot, and Hank tries to save a young woman who’ll probably end up being his love interest. All in all, the season premiere feels like a strong return, as the show has become refocused on contemporary subjects for satire, and the Venture family and its enemies have been streamlined down to just the central, most beloved players. In short, this may be the return Venture Bros. fans have been waiting a long time for. As Adult Swim attempts to follow its wildly successful Rick and Morty run, The Venture Bros. will prove to be a valuable asset.