See this picture? This is Hank, dressed as a supervillain, breaking into a bank in order to get thrown into an insane asylum for criminals. So you may not believe me when I say that Hank is, without any doubt, the most well-adjusted member of the Venture family at the moment.

Disagree? Read this recap, and see if you change your mind. There are three separate stories in “Momma’s Boys,” which in the best tradition of The Venture Bros. don’t stay separate for long. First, the still sulking Dean appears to have a girlfriend, who calls him on the phone and demands Dean tell her he loves and needs her. Second, Hank and Dermott, annoyed with Doc Venture constantly interrupting their practice, use Hank's Teddy Talk-to-Me doll (the VB equivalent of a Teddy Ruxpin) to occupy their father again, with the help of a burner cellphone, Teddy’s cassette tape of dialogue, and Doc Venture’s ability to monopolize any friendship and/or conversation. As Doc talks at a stuffed a bear, Hank and Dermott are able to sneak out at night.


What they don’t realize is that Doc’s boredom/paranoia now extends to Teddy, whom Doc thinks is an ex-con living in By-Golly Gulch who is being menaced by someone named “Grumpy Bandersnatch.” When Doc finds the Teddy Talk-To-Me in Hank’s room, he realizes the truth — Grumpy Bandersnatch has been listening into his and Teddy’s conversation via a bug in his son’s teddy bear, and Teddy is in serious trouble.

As Doc and Sgt. Hatred plan to head to By-Golly Gulch to save Teddy, Gary comes out of the bushes to help Hank and Dermott fix the situation — he knows where the real voice of Teddy is, namely the Dunwich Asylum for the Criminally Possessive, after he got burned in the Chinese factory making the dolls. Only criminals can get into Dunwich, however, meaning the three of them enter and (kind of) stick-up a bank as The Viceroy (“I mimic the Monarch butterfly!”), Flying Sidekick (“These are my magic numchuks, which I think might be pronounced numchaku!”) and Enrico Matasa (“My name means Hank Hank, and I’m also using a hank of yarn as a weapon!”). Guess who is who.

Hank and Gary are sent to Dunwich and Dermott and H.E.L.P.eR. are stuck in regular jail (the cops think “Flying Sidekick” makes him a sidekick, which Dunwich doesn’t accept while, the arguing Doc and Hatred accidentally drive off a bridge on their way to wherever their phone GPS has translated “By-Golly Gulch” to and end up in a cliff face, hanging upside down, waiting to die.


Dean, meanwhile, has arrived at prison — not the prison where Dermott is being held, but Dunwich, where it reveals he’s meeting Myra, the insane ex-Venture bodyguard, because Dean thinks she's his mom! This visit coincides with Myra’s prison break — thanks to the legion of guards and inmates alike she’s turned into her gang of “Momma’s Boys” — which also includes Teddy, discovered by Hank and Gary in the cafeteria. Unfortunately, Myra’s plot also involves using her henchmen Maybe Man and Big Time to send Myra back in time to Dean’s birth so she can shove him in her “pink pillow-y womb” so she can “finally give birth to teeny weenie Deanie and be his only-wonly mommy!”

This finally clues Hank and Dean in that Myra isn’t their mom, and that she’s a dangerous lunatic. Hank and Gary start a prison riot — which, to be honest, is not that difficult to do — the criminals escape, Teddy flees into the night, Gary saves Dean, and everyone runs like hell.

Meanwhile, Doc and Hatred are trading death confessions; Hatred masturbates to his own boobs, and Doc admits Dermott is his love child. Just as Hatred finally figures out Teddy’s true identity and is about to tell Doc, the real Teddy arrives at the car and helps pull Doc and Hatred to safety. The two bid each other a fond farewell, and Doc gets to keep the wool firmly over his eyes — but is happier for it.


The aforementioned love-child, by the way, has summoned Dr. Orpheus to help him out of regular jail — who is confused because he felt he was summoned by a Venture. Remembering earlier when he suddenly began to understand H.E.L.P.eR’s chitterings — something only the Ventures seem to be able to do — Dermott realizes that Doc must be his real dad. Just as importantly, Dermott seems to be completely fine with this — especially since he so casually announces this bombshell to his family during the episode’s epilogue.

So we’ve completely ruled out Myra as the Venture mother, Dermott, Hank and Dean know they’re all brothers, and somehow at the moment Hank is the most well-adjusted Venture at the moment, ready to roll with whatever craziness comes his way. This episode wasn’t as intricate as last week’s masterpiece, and maybe it wasn’t as rich, but it still advanced the characters, dropped some new facts on us and the characters, and was a damn fine time. Still, I can’t help but be excited about more O.S.I. shenanigans next week.


Assorted Musings:

Venture fans will remember this is not the first time Hank has used Teddy to distract Doc, which also explains why 1) Doc feels like they’re close friends and 2) Doc is genuinely worried for Teddy.

• Doc: “GYPO, I’m FOL, Code 9, TTYL. That’s ‘Getting Your Pants Off, I’m Fond of Leather, my parent or guardian is near, and I Will Talk To You Later’ in sexting.”


• Dermott: “Yeah, right H.E.L.P.eR. I’ll believe that when the Ms. Pac-Man table calls you back.”

• Sgt. Hatred keeps trying to figure out what Dean’s problem is. “Are you a friend of Anna? Anna… Rexia?”

• My favorite moment of the episode is when Dermott asks Hank how Doc Venture believes this Teddy/Grumpy Bandersnatch nonsense, and Hank points out it’s actually pretty normal for them. “Last year, right where you’re sitting, David Bowie looking like David Bowie in the ‘70s slapped a guy with invisible arms and legs. Right over there, Brock killed a guy from Dimension Z, which may or may not have been an alternate Earth. And that’s an ex-henchman for my dad’s archenemy. I’m sure he lives in my yard now.”


• Dermott: “Okay, guy watching us from the bushes, you make us into men. Should I get some lotion or do you want to use blood and clown paint for lube?”

• Second favorite moment: Gary and Dermott giving the “Go Team Venture” sign, and Hank not joining in.

• Myra: “My collectible Deanie baby!”

• Doc: “Maybe these are gumdrop trees, I’m not a botanist.” Hatred: “Gumdrop tr— Doc, these are the kinda trees that disembowel scarecrows lookin’ for wizards.”


• Hank: “Yeah, it’s just too bad that a raving lunatic that wanted to make you a baby again and then push you up her lady-hole isn’t our real mom. Real tragedy.”