Sunday, April 20, 2008

On a spring Saturday...

What should you do when you’re nine months-plus pregnant and planning a move in the near future?

a. Indulge in the nesting instinct by decorating the baby’s room.
b. Pack.
c. Nap as much as you can.
d. Clean the apartment.

They are all good choices, but we spent Saturday at New York’s Comicon wandering around the exhibit hall, watching panels and marveling (and sometimes cringing) at the costumes.

We were there to see Doc Hammer, Jackson Publick, James Urbaniak and Michael Sinterniklaas talk about the Venture Brothers, one of our favorite shows. The third season starts June 1, so we saw a preview and listened to some occasionally very dumb audience questions. The panelists were quick to mock dumb questions.

We met some nice people involved with a fan site called the People’s Republic of Venture (they gave us stickers). I was surprised at the hundreds of people who showed up to see the discussion, but that’s good, because it helps assure a long life for the show.

The Venture Brothers are two teenagers, Hank and Dean. Their father Rusty grew up in the shadow of a super-scientist and adventurer, and he has spent his life trying to follow in his father’s footsteps (as one character described it, “20 years of amphetamines and failure”). The family also has a government-issued bodyguard with a license to kill, Brock Sampson. He’s on a mission is called “Operation Rusty’s Blanket,” and he likes to make grilled cheese sandwiches and perform monthly lice checks on the boys when he’s not killing henchmen.

They often clash with villains from the Guild of Calamitous Intent, and Venture’s arch nemesis is the Monarch, a man who dresses like a butterfly, has dozens of henchmen and a trust fund.

It’s a show that’s funny and wrong all at the same time. It’s also well-written, smart, outlandish, and you get the sense there’s a huge back story that will eventually be revealed, though that may not be the case. I’m willing to wait and see, though.

The comicon also had a panel of actors from Battlestar Galactica, another great show, (yes, we watch too much television) so we saw that, too. Though the program had listed a couple of actors who were supposed to appear, there were three others who showed up, which was a nice surprise.

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