Dragon*Con Sunday at the Marriott Atrium Ballroom, fans line the block hours in advance for the Venture Brothers Panel with Jackson Publick, Doc Hammer and actor, James Urbaniak. While waiting to get the skinny on their favorite Adult Swim show, fans show off their costumes, snap photos and swap stories.
The panel opens with an animation for “Let’s All Smoking,” a 70s style talk show hosted by Doc and Jackson with special guest, James Urbaniak of “The Adventure Brothers” fame. Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer appear on stage smoking electronic cigarettes and drinking Fresca.
Doc Hammer: Welcome to Let’s All Smoking! Tonight we will be drinking Fresca, the almost citrus diet beverage as consumed by the Monarch in one episode and us whenever we can get it and we’re smoking electronic cigarettes which contains all the nicotine and non of the pleasure.
Jackson Publick: And we are celebrating 35 years of Let’s All Smoking.
Doc Hammer: Yep! 35 years of cancer!
The duo explain that over the history of their talk show, they’ve interviewed the likes of Renée Richards and Billie Jean King but are most excited about their next guest, actor James Urbaniak.
Doc Hammer: Well tonight, we have Mr. James Urbaniak from the Adventure Show. He plays Dr. Adventure and he’s gonna tell you all about the show!
James Urbaniak comes out on stage also smoking an electronic cigarette and is greeted by Doc and Jackson.
Doc Hammer: So we’ve been hearing a lot about this Adventure Show you’re doing and we would just love to hear about it and smoke.
James Urbaniak: Well, the show is called Adventure Brothers and it’s sorta a parody of Johnny Quest… and it was created by you (points to Doc) and you (points to Jackson).
Jackson Publick: Fascinating!
Doc Hammer: That’s amazing!
James proceeds to explain his role on the show to his interviewers, who now believe it’s live action or an animation process very similar to that of Cool World or Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
Doc Hammer: So what you’re saying is you go into cartoon world through a portal every episode, Dr. Adventure just goes in and he comes out into a beautiful cartoon world and I like that, that sounds fascinating! Tell us about it!
James Urbaniak: That sounds very delightful and very ambitious idea for a show. The Adventure Brothers is actually an animated cartoon.
Jackson Publick: Were you in Cool World? Does this take place in Cool World?
James Urbaniak: Is that the Ralph Bakshi film?
Jackson Publick: Yeah with the magic and the cartoons and the portals.
James Urbaniak: I’ve never seen it.
Doc Hammer: Is it in the Who Frame process? Like Roger Rabbit which is in the Who Frame process.
James Urbaniak: The what-frame process?
Doc Hammer: Who Frame!
James Urbaniak: I’m not familiar with that process.
Doc Hammer: Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
Urbaniak continues to explain the show to the seemingly uninitiated Doc Hammer and Jackson Publick.
James Urbaniak: You’re misunderstanding the show profoundly. Are you familiar with the 1960s cartoon Johnny Quest?
Jackson Publick: Never heard of it.
Doc Hammer: Nope!
James Urbaniak: Well anyway, Johnny Quest was a show about a family and the dad is sorta an adventurer and there’s a boy and a bodyguard kinda guy and that’s sort of the template. Are you familiar with the word template?
Doc Hammer: Nope!
Jackson Publick: Is that a sneaker?
James Urbaniak: This is a damn good Fresca!
At the panel fans were treated to a 5 minute clip reel from the Venture Brothers Halloween Special. Clips shown include Hank, Dean and Dermott plotting some Halloween mischief; Jefferson Twilight explaining sexy Halloween costumes; Dr. Venture and the gang betting on which trick or treater can get the furthest past the Venture compound’s security. In the final clip, we see Dean awake from his learning bed dressed as Dracula to an unimpressed Doc and Brock.
From the reel clip, the panel was opened up for Q&A with the audience. With the Venture Brothers, standard Q&A practices give way as Doc and Jackson dive headfirst into a crowd of their adoring fans to field questions.
What’s your favorite character voice to do?
James Urbaniak: Well of course, I love Dr. Venture, but I always use to enjoy playing like guys on the corner or the cop in the yard sale. I’m like some green goo that talks like Paul Lind…
Jackson Publick: The Monarch probably, right? When I’m at home I talk like Sgt. Hatred or Hank all the time. Depending on how excited I am about something. But if I’m really excited, it’s Hank!
Doc Hammer: I guess Shore Leave… Boom Yummy!
Who would you like to have as a guest voice?
Jackson Publick: Well, we keep asking Jon Hamm but he’s always busy. So I guess you could say I want Jon Hamm.
Doc Hammer: I want David Bowie.
Jackson: I want David Bowie too!
Doc Hammer: Yeah, probably harder to get than Jon Hamm.
Jackson: You wanna know who turned us down this year? Stellar cast that will never happen, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Mister Nick Nolte, Sir Rucker Hauer… all for the same role.
What’s your favorite phrase in your voice acting career?
James Urbaniak: The one I find myself repeating a lot when I’m driving or something is ‘No one gets the Shrink Ray!’
Doc Hammer: Every once and awhile we’ll make a line that just falls flat, it’s usually a narrative-exposition line, and every time you hear it, you wanna die; You just want to crawl up into a ball and have everybody ignore you and it is Billy going (changes voice) ‘Can we just do this please?’
Is there a phrase that has been adopted into your lives from the show?
Jackson Publick: It works the other way around.
Doc Hammer: We’ve been talking how things being Batman for years and then we include that.
Jackson Publick: My favorite new thing that I’ve had to say this year is (changes voice) ‘You’re supposed to be my Calisi!’
How much of the Rusty Venture musical did you write out?
Doc Hammer: You heard every line and actually more than what was written down, we probably stretched it.
Jackson Publick: We used the dance mix in the show, didn’t we?
Doc Hammer: Yes, we did. It was in the closing credits and I had to loop it, that’s how short it was.
Who are Shore Leave and Colonel Gentleman’s favorite man they’ve ever slept with?
Doc Hammer: Colonel Gentleman has one. Astronaut…
Jackson Publick: (In Colonel Gentleman voice) Wally Schirra.
Doc Hammer: And Shore Leave… it’s just notches on the headboard and that headboard is really unstable. He loves them all!
What has been your favorite episode to work on?
Jackson Publick: I can’t tell you because it’s from this season. Episode 505…
Doc Hammer: I like the one where Orpheus was getting himself his own super-villain. I like guild-y stuff. I like it when Jackson and I do Watch and Ward. So, yeah, that one was fun to work on.
James Urbaniak: Most recently, the one where they go to New York and Dr. Venture gets the Broadway bug. I quite enjoyed that one. I got to sing and stuff…
Have you thought of making the Monarchs parents?
Jackson Publick: We thought about it and we shot that idea down.
Doc Hammer: Yeah, that’s a little shark jump-y for me.
What’s your favorite movie?
Doc Hammer: I like Silence of the Lambs a lot, it’s just a great film.
James Urbaniak: The one movie I am really obsessed with and will watch repeatedly and love every element is ‘All the President’s Men’ by Alan J. Pakula. It’s a great film.
Jackson Publick: Mine are Raiders of the Lost Ark, To Kill a Mocking Bird, Trainspotting and Rear Window.
Is there anyone who can take out Doctor Killinger?
Doc Hammer: Who can kill Killinger?
Jackson Publick: Galactus.
Doc Hammer: Galactus.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to make their own show or get into the field of voice acting?
Doc Hammer: If you have a really good idea and it’s actually good, just keep doing it and someone will care one day. If they don’t, you may not have a great idea… If you make something great and put it on the internet, someone will find you. Getting paid is a different story.
Now for voice acting, I would think about something else. It’s not lucrative. It just isn’t. Unless you do the voice for Jeopardy or something where you can have contract negotiations…
James Urbaniak: My advice is to move to New York, get a roommate who’s a cartoonist, who’s a friend of Jackson Publick and meet Jackson Publick socially and then have Jackson Publick ask you to do a cartoon in a bar somewhere…
Doc Hammer: Oh my god! Don’t do that!
Watch Venture Brothers Panel Video from Dragon*Con 2012 – Part One
Watch Venture Brothers Panel Video from Dragon*Con 2012 – Part Two
Watch Venture Brothers Panel Video from Dragon*Con 2012 – Part Three
Watch Venture Brothers Panel Video from Dragon*Con 2012 – Part Four
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