From creator Brendon Small and Adult Swim, comes the heavy metal animated comedy Metalocalypse, featuring the greatest fictional band on earth – Dethklok! The series was officially cancelled in 2016 after four seasons.
Part-American, part-Scandinavian death-metal band Dethklok has a lingering effect on its fans, who take the words seriously and do anything Dethklok lyrics say. The government fears the band’s influence and sets out to destroy it by covert means; for example, by sending military pharmaceutical psychotropic drug manufacturers. Deemed sociopaths for tossing hot coffee at their concert attendees, two of the band members are alcoholics, and they all have self-esteem issues.
After Metalocalypse wasn’t renewed by Adult Swim in 2015, creator Brendon Small launched a month-long campaign entitled Metalocalypse Now! where fans could go sign a petition and make Adult Swim/Hulu take notice that the people need one more and one final season to tie up all loose ends. After the petition wrapped up with just shy of 100,000 signatures, the network apparently took notice but in the end – decided to not pursue new episodes and instead keep the rights to only air reruns, not letting the series move to another network even after purchase offers were made.
“It turns out Adult Swim doesn’t want anyone to have Metalocalypse, not even themselves. They just want old re-runs. They paid for it, so they can take their ball and go home with it, and that’s how show business works, for better or for worse. They said just a flat out no, and they get to do that. And if I had paid for the series, then I would get to make the decisions, but I didn’t pay for it.” said Small.
“When you sell a TV show to a network that’s the deal that you make, it may seem like a deal with the devil, but for me I would do it the same way every time because that means that I got to make this show, I got to turn a bunch of people on to heavy metal, I got to make people laugh, and I got to make a whole bunch of music, whereas before, I was only making music for myself in my little room where I play guitar for myself. I got to put a whole audience together and make characters and comedy and a long story that people were interested in, and without Adult Swim giving me the money up front, it wouldn’t have happened. So even if this ending doesn’t seem so great, the whole story is a good one, it’s a positive story. After a break up, both parties like to exclaim about how nobody ever loved each other in the first place, but the truth is, this is a really good love story between me and Adult Swim. there’s nothing wrong with that, at some point a TV show has got to end, and I was ready for the show to end no matter what, but i wanted to tag on this little final ending story.”
He went on to reveal to Metal Insider that he does plan on concluding the Dethklok story eventually but he won’t say how at this time. So after four Dethklok albums , several successful tours and a show that metal fans will always fondly look back upon, it appears this is truly the end. Small is continuing to pursue music however and his going to be releasing a new solo album – Galaktikon II in the near future.
“Everyone that spent time supporting and signing the thing and going on to Adult Swim and complaining, you did actually do something. You got people with lots of money to open up their purses and offer to pay for the show. The network just said “no, we don’t want to.” The way we structured it was that the network would have made money off this, it’s very rare that they make money and make a show at the same time, they would’ve just gotten a license fee and they wouldn’t have even had to air it if they didn’t want to, they could have just let it exist somewhere else. But again, the conundrum that is show business, why they did or didn’t do it isn’t for me to answer. But to be optimistic about this, all the fans who supported this, you did do something, it’s just you can’t change a guy at a network’s mind at the end of the day. That’s the end of the story.” said Small.
Read the full interview with Metal Insider HERE