Home Insecurity

"Home Insecurity" is the third episode in the first season of The Venture Bros.


Baron Ünderbheit, iron-jawed ruler of Ünderland, receives updates on the nation's status from his three trusted advisers. After their status reports, Ünderbheit informs them that each of them has betrayed him (and therefore the country). The Baron lulls them into a false sense of security before seemingly executing them. He then informs his manservant that he has only one objective left: the destruction of Dr. Venture.

At the Venture compound, Brock is packing for his annual vacation. Venture pleads with him to wait a few more days until he can complete the compound's security system, but Brock is unsympathetic and drives off in his Dodge Charger. Nearing his camping destination, he is stopped by an armed soldier who informs him that the area has been closed for reasons of national security. Brock ignores the guard and proceeds to his planned campsite.

That night, Venture falls asleep at his workbench. H.E.L.P.eR. finds him and carries him lovingly to bed. Returning to the lab, the robot notices the plans Venture had been working on: a new security construct named G.U.A.R.D.O. Assuming that the new project is intended as a replacement, H.E.L.P.eR. packs a few possessions and leaves the compound in "sadness".

Brock's peaceful evening by the campfire is disturbed by rustling noises nearby. He tracks the intruder until he finds a tall, hairy, humanoid creature and engages it in hand-to-hand combat. Soon he is attacked by a bionically augmented man in a red track suit, who Brock neutralizes by kicking him in the still-natural testicles.

Back at the compound, an Ünderland agent releases a scorpion into Venture's bedroom at the same time that one of The Monarch's henchmen gingerly drops a tarantula into another window of the same room. The two underlings spot each other and start arguing; Venture wakes up to find two venomous creatures fighting inches from his face and slaps a button on his nightstand. Steel shutters close over every door and window in the complex while Venture and his two sons are dropped into a reinforced panic room. Hank sees the spider and scorpion still crawling on his father and smacks Venture in the head with a nearby fire extinguisher. Dean exits the room to look for a first aid kit but encounters G.U.A.R.D.O. The massive robot warns Dean that he is an intruder and chases him back into the panic room. Venture awakens and explains that he fell asleep before programming G.U.A.R.D.O. to distinguish friends from foes. They are temporarily safe, since the door is made of tempered steel, but the robot is constructed of the same material.

Brock listens sympathetically to the track-suited man, who explains that he is former astronaut Steve Summers. A horrible accident left him gravely injured, but the government saved his life by grafting bionic parts worth six million dollars onto him - and then expected him to repay the cost of the operation. Rather than spend the rest of his life doing the government's dirty work, he fled into the wilderness where he met Sasquatch, who became his domestic partner. When the group suddenly hears troops nearby searching for Summers, Brock agrees to help them escape.

The henchmen continue to argue over who gets to kill Venture until one of them suggests calling their respective bosses. They call a truce while The Monarch invites Ünderbheit to his cocoon headquarters to work out a compromise. After the ceremonial attempts on each other's life, the two villains begin discussing who should retreat. Their lackeys, who have grown bored while waiting for instructions, begin drinking beer together and discussing their respective bosses.

Driving away from his campsite, Brock is stopped by the same soldier. He indicates his passengers and explains that he is giving a couple of Vietnam vets a ride home. After the soldier lets him pass, a second soldier points out that the "vets" were a shaved Sasquatch and Summers wearing a wig of Bigfoot hair. Safe for the moment, Summers thanks Brock for his help. Brock grunts in acknowledgment, still disturbed by his discovery (while shaving him) that Sasquatch is male.

The gathered henchmen trade stories and get progressively more intoxicated. Their restlessness and drunkenness win out as they decide to subject the Venture compound to childish vandalism. Just outside the fence, H.E.L.P.eR. stands at a bus stop and ignores Venture's pleas for help. The boys persuade their father to apologize, and the robot relents. H.E.L.P.eR. attempts to plug into the compound's security system but accidentally shorts out the power for a few seconds. This "reboots" G.U.A.R.D.O., who finally stomps away from the panic room door. As the steel shutters raise, the security robot spots the rampaging henchmen outside and begins attacking the newly-found intruders.

At long last, The Monarch and Ünderbheit reach an agreement: they will cooperate and share the glory of killing their mutual enemy. None of their henchmen respond to their calls, however. Back at the compound, dozens of uniform-clad bodies are sprawled in the aftermath of obvious violence. Brock pulls up in his Charger and, distracted by the carnage, hits G.U.A.R.D.O. and disables it.

After the ending credits are displayed, H.E.L.P.eR. stands outside the panic room, blocking Venture and his sons from leaving until they apologize further.

Cultural references

  • Steve Summers is a parody of Colonel Steve Austin from The Six Million Dollar Man. His name comes from a combination of Steve Austin's first name and the last name of the Bionic Woman, Jaime Sommers. Several episodes of The Six Million Dollar Man featured a sasquatch, who was an ally of Austin.
  • Dean and Hank both sport Underoos, a line of children's underwear that first became popular in the 1980s. Dean wears a Spider-Man pair while Hank wears an Aquaman pair. Both characters wear these Underoos in several subsequent episodes.
  • This episode firmly establishes Ünderbheit as an homage and parody of Doctor Doom, from his dictatorial rule of his home country to his disfigurement which he blames on a college rival who is now his archenemy.
  • Guardo's monitor displaying Dr. Venture's face is a reference to RoboCop 2.
  • The panic room in this episode is inspired by the 2002 film by David Fincher.
  • The "Tiger Bomb" scene is reminiscent of a scene from Thunderball.

Connections to other episodes

  • Before Brock goes off on vacation, he refers to Hank (who is sporting a feathered headdress) as "Runs-with-scissors". In the season two opener, "Powerless in the Face of Death", Dean is seen running with safety scissors and then being impaled in a death montage.
  • This is the first major appearance of Numbers Twenty-One and Twenty-Four, the two recurring henchmen of the Monarch.
  • Baron Ünderbheit explains that he lost his jaw in a lab accident where he was partnered with Dr. Venture. The episode "Past Tense" shows Ünderbheit, jaw intact, inhabiting the same college dorm hall as Venture.It's later revealed in Shadowman 9: In the Cradle of Destiny that it was actually the Monarch who blew up the lab but it was later credited to Dr. Venture.
  • Catclops, Girl Hitler, and Manic Eightball all survive the explosions (although "behind the scenes") and all reappear in the season two episode, "Love-Bheits".
  • G.U.A.R.D.O. is seen again in Tears of a Sea Cow, where it is sexually assaulted by The Monarch.

Production notes

  • Publick mentioned in his LiveJournal a "lost commentary" for this episode, which was cut from the season one DVD primarily due to lack of space. The audio track can be downloaded separately
  • One of the animation directors (Kimson Albert) has a "nickname" inserted into his credits. The nickname is an unusual line or word from the preceding episode. For "Home Insecurity" the credit reads Kimson "Shaved Bigfoot" Albert.


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