Five Things You Might Not Know About The Venture Bros.
Image courtesy of Adult Swim
*Doc Hammer, Jackson Publick and the Cult of 'The Venture Bros.'
*The Venture Bros.: Convention Do's and Don'ts for Fans
At long last, The Venture Bros. are back. This Sunday, season five will make it's much anticipated premiere. More than two years have passed since the rousing conclusion of the show's fourth season on Adult Swim.
Although it didn't take long for word to spread that the popular animated series was picked up for fifth and sixth seasons, it did take a while for new episodes to come to fruition. In the meantime, the team behind the show released a music video and exposé for the Venture compound's house band, Shallow Gravy, and a Halloween special.
Recently, we caught up with Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer, the masterminds of the Venture universe, to talk about the things you might not necessarily know about the show.
1. Only two people write The Venture Bros.
Image courtesy of Adult Swim
If you're the sort of person who constantly checks out the credits, or if you hit up The Venture Bros. panels at San Diego Comic-Con, you probably know that Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer write all of the episodes. (In this case, you may also know that Ben Edlund, of The Tick and Supernatural, wrote "¡Viva Los Muertos!" and has story credits for "Guess Who's Coming to State Dinner?" and "Careers in Science," but those are exceptions.)
That Publick and Hammer are the sole writers for the series is unusual in the world of television, where, typically, you'll see several people with various writerly credits on a single episode. "We don't have a think tank. We don't have a writer's room," says Hammer. "It really is just two people."
Publick and Hammer write the season premieres and finales together. For the rest of the season, they alternate episodes. There's a good reason for that kind of schedule. "It's supposed to mean that we each get a month to write a script because we have to turn in one every two weeks once we get going," says Publick.
2. The same two writers also direct and edit the show.
Even more unusual is that the two writers also have directing and editing responsibilities. Publick is the director for many of the series' episodes. Hammer handles editing duties. On top of that, both of them voice multiple characters and handle other odds and ends on the show.
"That's one of the reasons why it takes so long," says Publick of the often lengthy stretches of time that pass between seasons.
Animation is an incredibly long process. It takes several months to get one episode from pre-production to to completion. "It gets nuts in the middle [of the production cycle] because you'll have five or six episodes that are in various stages of production and you just have to deal with that," says Publick. "You're editing the animatic for one while you're revising the storyboards for another while another one is being designed and another is being colored and you're recording another one."
"And you're writing another episode," Hammer adds.