FFWD REW

Adventurous Venture Bros.

Have you ever had one of those wonderful moments where you’ve been unable to identify somebody’s Halloween costume for several minutes and then in a flash you suddenly get it?

It’s possible that you haven’t. Some costumes are so obscure that nobody gets them and in a costume party atmosphere it’s very easy to get impatient and flat-out ask “What are you supposed to be?” before you’ve even given the puzzle much thought. Then there’s the recognition the smile and the compliment to the costumed individual on his/her cleverness perhaps with an appreciative chuckle. It feels good to have the matter resolved especially if you identified the costume without resorting to asking the question.

So let’s flash back a few Halloweens to a costume party I attended that featured some amazingly creative costumes. There was a fully armoured Spartan warrior. There was John Hurt from Alien (1979) complete with alien chest-burster erupting from his T-shirt. Hit-Girl. Bunnicula the vampire bunny rabbit from the book of the same name. And one guy in a purple superhero/villain costume with pulsating neon arms and legs.

This last costume had me stumped. The guy’s limbs were all jet black save for thin veins of day-glo piping that lit up thanks to some sort of ingenious thin glowstick tubing. In the darkened house the effect made his arms look invisible with wispy glowing red-and-blue lines flickering. I was baffled.

Finally I ignored the lights and focused on the head. Who wears a domino mask and a purple hood? Perhaps he’s “The Phantom” the costumed crime fighter from old old comic strips and that one Billy Zane movie. Hey wait a minute… Phantom… HOLY SHIT! PHANTOM LIMB!

This guy was cosplaying as the suave devious Phantom Limb a recurring character from the brilliantly twisted animated series The Venture Bros. (2003-present). That earned him 50 points for the cult-favourite series 100 points for the obscure character and 12000 points for even attempting to go Halloweening as a guy with invisible arms and legs. I gushed over the awesomeness of this costume. Hell I might have been the only one who recognized it.

Ladies and gentlemen if any of you are considering dressing up as your favourite Venture Bros. characters for Halloween I urge you to do so. The show is filled with bizarre and unforgettable heroes and villains whose very existence at a fancy dress party will confuse and delight. Just imagine… Truckules the unholy cross between Optimus Prime and Hercules! Manic 8-Ball the prophetic trinket! Girl Hitler! King Gorilla! Jefferson Twilight the Blacula Hunter! Dr. Girlfriend offers several variant costume ideas including classic Jackie-O dress cleavage butterfly suit sexy cheerleader “Queen Etherea” Lady Au Pair and that purple bow bra she wore for The Monarch’s birthday. Sure not everyone at the party will get it but you’ll look amazing and a few of your fellow guests might even go home determined to check out this Venture Bros. program for themselves.

Granted this is kind of a weird time for fans of the show because everybody seems to have forgotten it. Season 4 got split into two sort-of half-seasons each with its own DVD. (Get the season 4 Blu-ray instead; it’s got all 16 episodes.) Did you know that season 5 is now available on DVD and Blu-ray? Check it out — the show is still funny and brilliant. A sixth season has supposedly been given the green light but it’s unclear when new episodes will air so buy the discs and show your support for this one-of-a-kind series.

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