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Recap / The Venture Bros S 7 E 8 The Terminus Mandate

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Before forming a new ruling organization of the Guild of Calamitous Intent, the remaining Council members each go on one last arching. Meanwhile, Dr. Venture attempts to woo a "black widow" known for sleeping with wealthy men, then killing them.


  • Berserk Button: Blind Rage's egotism and general personality enrage Red Death to the point where he foregos his appointed last arch and instead goes after Blind Rage. And not a tear was shed.
    • Gary worries that if Rusty ends up being the "last hurrah" arch for Mrs. The Monarch on top of her possibly no longer being his Number 2, Monarch will go ballistic. Even though that's not the case (it's Didae), her arch ends up at the VenTech compound anyway, so Sheila starts having similar concerns for her husband.
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  • Black Widow: Teresa Didae, formerly a bridal-themed heroine named Novia who dealt with Lady Au Pair, now a Femme Fatale who targets rich men. Night Dick warns Rusty, but he sees it as an opportunity to get laid. The two ultimately go nowhere since Rusty ends up passing out from all the drugs Brock had him take as well as Brock keeping a rifle trained on her at all times.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Subverted by Red Death who takes off just as the train approaches while he has Blind Rage Chained to a Railway. He outright admits he's giving him a chance to escape but either he escapes and relays his message to the Peril Partnership or he's dead, which does the same and Red Death gets what he wants.
  • Boring Yet Practical: Part of why Red Death praises the Chained to a Railway trope is that it's simple and doesn't require many resources to pull off while also allowing a large amount of mental torment to whoever it's directed toward. He shows a similar fondness for classic time-bombs for the same reason.
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  • Bus Crash: Desmond, the original Captain Sunshine and current Captain Sunshine's butler, was once an arch of Dragoon's. It's stated that all of his and Red Mantle's arches have already died, which presumably includes Desmond.
  • Continuity Nod: Wide Wale's MO when arching is traveling underground via the subway systems, bursting out of the ground in a whale-shaped ship. Now, his (former) arch-enemy is revealed to be Curtis Sliwa, a Real Life activist whose non-profit organization the Guardian Angels work to prevent crime in NYC's subways.
  • Chained to a Railway: How Red Death deals with Blind Rage; becomes a Discussed Trope during Red Death's To the Pain monologue.
    Red Death: Oh, you're up. Goody. We can start your history lesson. Long before there were loudmouth buff guys in spandex, there was the gentleman villain. His favorite sinister act was this: Tying someone to a train track. It's simple, inexpensive, personal and deadly, but it gives you a little hope - maybe you'll escape.
    (Blind Rage's muffled screams interrupt)
    Red Death: Lesson's NOT over, sonny! Now, the gentleman villain had these old school time-bombs; three sticks of dynamite wired to an alarm clock. And what was so poetic about that is that they ticked. You could hear them - tick tick tick. Nowadays they're just digital; no sound, no peril.
    (The sound of an approaching train is heard, getting closer)
    Red Death: Oh, ohoho! Do you hear that? There's the tick! The train is coming! Is it on this track? Tick tick tick. Maybe it's on the other track! Tick tick tick! (cackles maniacally) Not bad for an old man, huh? I'm gonna get going, let you try to escape. And if you do, tell the Peril Partnership that the Guild isn't scared of punks. If you don't... eh, sorry.
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  • Cliffhanger: During The Stinger, Dr. Mrs. The Monarch is plagued with indecision during the swearing-in of permanent Council members; does she accept a seat and effectively renounce her duo-ship with The Monarch, or turn down the Council seat to placate her husband but also deny herself a big-time career opportunity?
  • Expy: Blind Rage is a clear reference to Daredevil. His costume even imitates Daredevil's, has a similar eyeless mask and has his initials on the chest - in Braille.
  • Fallen Hero: As noted above, Teresa Didae, formerly Novia, a bridal-themed heroine and Dr. Mrs. The Monarch's arch. Now targets rich men for their wealth. Creates a greater contrast between her and Sheila.
  • Friendly Enemy: Out of the "last hurrah" archings of the Guild:
    • Dr. Z. visits Action Johnny in rehab to reminisce about the good old days and admits that he loves him. In a platonic way.
    • Dr. Mrs. The Monarch breaks down crying in front of Novia/Teresa Didae out of insecurity towards her own life choices and ends up being comforted by her. She still stole her wallet while they were hugging, though.
    • Wide Wale buried the hatchet with his former enemy, Curtis Sliwa of the Guardian Angels, a long time ago and Rocco even plays poker with him on Thursdays. Wale tells Rocco to slap him around a bit and leaves it at that.
    • Radical Left's arch enemy is his right half, named Right Wing, having previously absorbed him into his body through unknown means. Their final showdown is playing Clue, best out of 5.
    • Phantom Limb chats with Col. Gathers on the phone and they agree to a literal dick-measuring contest.
    • Red Mantle and Dragoon have a night in, anxiously procrastinating so much as opening their assignment's envelope. Luckily for them, all their former enemies were already dead so they got off the hook.
    • Red Death is the only real exception, tying Blind Rage to train tracks while giving him a lecture on how villainy was done back in the day.
  • Family Versus Career: Dr. Mrs. has to choose between her career as a member of the Council and remaining beside her husband as an active villain. The Stinger has her hesitating with her final decision.
  • Important Haircut: Gary finally ditches the ponytail.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: Considering the first impression of Blind Rage was him blackmailing the Guild and acting like a gigantic, egotistical asshat, not a lot of tears were shed when Red Death took it upon himself to ambush Rage, bind him to a railroad track and give him a To the Pain-laced lecture on the simple elegance of proper villainy before leaving him to get run over by an oncoming train.
  • The Last Dance: Non-fatal example. The members of the Guild must renounce being active villains in order to cement their positions, and are given one final arching assignment.
  • Stylistic Suck: Dr. Z flashes back to his time arching Action Johnny, and the scene resembles the low-budget look of a Hanna-Barbera series.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Dean, as "Didae", catches Rusty having Failed a Spot Check during their rehearsal for his date with the real Didae by offering him a drink while he's running through the "life insurance" spiel with Hank, only to reveal mid-sip it could've easily been "a lethal dose of tetrodotoxin."

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