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Music / The Banzai Predicament

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"It's time to revolutionize
We're bringing home those orphaned skies"
—"Orphaned Skies"

The Banzai Predicament is a band created by Nathan Fielder for the show Nathan for You. In the episode "Shipping Logistics Company", Nathan plans to help a shipping company pay lower tariffs for smoke detectors by selling them as musical instruments. In order to prove they are instruments, Nathan decides to release a hit song featuring a smoke detector. After posting auditions for members, he formed the group The Banzai Predicament, who released their first and only song "Orphaned Skies", notable for its use of a smoke detector as an instrument. The band never released another song and broke up not long after.


  • 2017 - "Orphaned Skies"

Tropes, BEEP:

  • Everything Is an Instrument: The band's main gimmick is its use of a smoke detector as an instrument, which Nathan Fielder relabeled as a "blues smoke detector" (not that it sounded any different).
  • Fake Band: Nathan Fielder formed this band only for the show to prove that smoke detectors can be musical instruments.
  • Green Aesop: "Orphaned Skies" has a vaguely environmental message.
    In time the Earth will have to stomach what we spew
    And face the trees we killed before they grew
  • The Man Behind the Man: The band, its music, and its use of a smoke detector were all set up by Nathan. Additionally, he created a fake Shell Oil commercial containing the song to convince its members that Shell stole it, leading to them throwing a protest that was covered on the news, allowing the song to gain even more publicity.
  • Protest Song: "Orphaned Skies" vaguely protests environmental issues, and it later became the face of the band’s protest against Shell.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Like everything Nathan creates, his plan to lower tariffs on smoke detectors by labeling it as instrument, using it as an instrument, and creating a fake commercial to convince the band to throw a protest and get the song on the news are all ridiculous and morally questionable plans that end up working, to some extent.
  • Word Salad Title: The band's name doesn't have any real meaning and is just two random words.