Will Preston

Tag: Metalocalypse

The most brutal of all season finales

by on Jul.17, 2012, under Review, Television

Anyone with a working knowledge of drop F guitar tuning and octuple bass drum pedals would have come across the fictional band Dethklok by now. Like Spinal Tap, they started off a music genre in-joke, but ultimately contributed to the cultural movement they set out to lampoon. The adult animated comedy Metalocalypse follows the brutal exploits of the worlds heaviest rock outfit since Strapping Young Lad tried to take it far beyond metal.

Death metal grocery shopping

The show has already garnered a large – yet cult – following despite only being broadcasted late night on satellite channel Adult Swim – a plethora of child-unfriendly cartoons that get thrown back to the late at night slot for a bloody good reason. When it comes to Metalocalypse, think Spinal Tap meets South Park – lots of heavy metal in-jokes and seemingly improvised dialogue spread across scenes of crass humour and ultra violence. Sounds so niche that you can’t imagine it getting through a fourth season, let alone one, right?

To bring you up to speed as fast as a Malmsteen lick, Dethklok are a 5-peice death metal act whose success has led them to a level of such unimaginable hedonism that they live in a remote dragon shaped castle (“Mordhaus”), employ an entire workforce of servants, bodyguards and sound engineers, and travel everywhere in ludicrously metal-themed vehicles from a 5-seater motorbike to a 2-storey helicopter.

Dethklok are:

  • Nathan Explosion – The bands hulking frontman with a voice ranging from grunting to death metal grunting. Possibly based on George “CorpseGrinder” Fisher from Cannibal Corpse
  • Skwisgaar Skwigelf – The world’s fastest (and tallest) guitarist. Alongside the other guitarist – Toki – Skwisgaar’s broken English and childlike intelligence is a constant source of hilarity. Possibly based on Eicca Toppinen from Apocalyptica
  • Toki Wartooth – An excited manchild from Finland who finds constant amazement at the simplest of things – usually uttering his catchphrase “Wowwee!” Possibly based on Mikael Akerfeldt from Opeth
  • William Murderface – The typical ugly bass player. William’s self loathing and resentment of everyone around him tags him as the Eric Cartman of the band. Possibly based on Geezer Butler from Black Sabbath
  • Pickles – The drummer. Looks like Axl Rose with dreads and sports a Wisconsin accent. The only member of the band to have been in a previously successful band a la Dave Grohl. Was originally based on Devin Townsend.

The band finds fun with a defibrillator

The show follows the band and an Illuminati-style council – The Tribunal – that believes the successful career of Dethklok is part of an ancient prophecy that will bring the end of the world. This leads to a lot of cloak and dagger sub plots involving hired agents trying to bring down the band in order to stave off a heavy metal apocalypse (thus the show’s name). The members of this organisation are under command from a mysterious bearded wizard-like man called Mr. Selatcia – who slowly reveals his god-like powers.

After 3 series’ of plot twists, violent mass deaths and an episode where the band attempt to perform oral sex on themselves, Dethklok are set to finish recording their long awaited new album. However, Season 4 starts to show that maybe the prophecy isn’t the delusions of a paranoid mind. After a worldwide storm of nightmarish proportions, the copies of the new album never reach the market, causing worldwide panic and doubt over Dethklok’s future. Before the season reaches its shocking finale, a few questions are answered. What happened to the band’s previous guitarist? Who is Mr. Selatcia and what is he, exactly?

The Dethcycle

Series 4 included some hilarious moments, from the band’s ill-fated presentation on racial equality to Murderface’s brush with cheap plastic surgery. Even past its 60th episode, the show still riffs great chords of comedy and continues to unravel a fantastic ongoing storyline that reveals more about the prophecy itself. But just before every mystery is solved, it literally comes to an earth-shattering finish that leaves you wondering if series 5 is the last outing for Dethklok. Even if you’re not a fan of the many facets of heavy metal, the show is a great example of quick flowing dialogue in a comedy show and features some of the zaniest stage set ups seen outside of a KISS concert.

The last episode aired last Sunday with series 5 yet to be announced.

Series 1-3 are currently available on DVD and is regularly shown on Adult Swim.

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