Oh, man. It’s part two of what they’re calling the Morphic Trilogy and things are getting intense. This week, it’s mostly villains and it’s rad. A forgotten character returns, the Morpho mystery deepens, Clancy Brown voices up a storm, and hopefully you’re glad you rewatched “Careers in Science” last week because it’s going to come up again. Suit up for “The Rorqual Affair”!
We open with a dream sequence. Gary (formerly Henchman 21) is in class and woefully unprepared. He switches from his Viceroy costume to being naked, to being a little kid. Henchman 24 appears beside him and the teacher is, variously, Wandering Spider, Wes Warhammer, and Sgt. Hatred in a henchman costume. If you’ll recall, he killed the first two last season. Then he wakes up to realize he overslept. He hurriedly gets ready, sniffing things every step of the way, including a bloody henchman glove. And then he realizes the car is gone.
Cut to the thing he’s later for – Monarch (as Blue Morpho) is in Wide Wale’s office to confront him. He’s demanding Wale shut down his operation “or die in this office that is disappointingly not whale-shaped or hovering or anything cool”. Monarch says that in ten seconds Rocco will be dead and Wide Wale will be unconscious, but Gary is still on the subway, so nothing happens (despite a cool knife throw where there’s half a spin too many) and Rocco tackles the Monarch.
Opening titles! Which is literally just a musical sting and the logo – I wonder if the opening theme is a thing of the past.
We cut to a Guild meeting, which seems to be held in a community center. The still-incomplete Council of 13 (current members, since it’s been a couple of years: Dr. Mrs. The Monarch, Phantom Limb, Red Panzer, Dragoon, Dr. Z, Phineas Phage, and Radical Left) are advising everybody to stop arching until the Blue Morpho is in custody. It’s not a popular suggestion. Hey, favorites like Intangible Fancy and Brick Frog are there. And in fact, Brick Frog gets the line: “My only skills are brick throwing and frog being.” Phantom Limb promises free Guild dues for a year to whoever brings in the head of the Blue Morpho. At the back of the room, Red Death (Clancy Brown!) says he’ll bring in Morpho if they give him a seat on the Council.
Back at Wide Wale’s, Rocco and Wale tie up the unconscious Monarch. They screw around a little, pretending not to know who he is because his mask is too effective. They know it’s the Monarch, and Wide Wale hates the Monarch. Origin time! Wale wasn’t always a half-whale. There was a reference to this last season, but Wale’s real name is Chester Ong. His brother was Douglas Ong, who mutated himself with cuttlefish DNA into Dr. Dugong. He was a heroic scientist who the Monarch briefly arched before murdering him in Season Three’s “Tears of a Sea Cow”. Anyway, the same lab accident mutated both of them and years later, the Monarch killed Wide Wale’s brother. He knocks the Monarch out.
Gary monitors the Monarch’s vitals from outside the building, because he finally got there. He concludes “If he lives through this, he’s going to kill me”. Dr. Mrs. The Monarch pops up on a browser window, first showing an ad for hot sexy cheerleaders. That’s a pretty good cover, actually. She orders Gary to get to Rat Island, because they caught the Blue Morpho.
Villains assemble to see Tunnel Vision (a guy with a drill for a head and a second drill for a hand) present his kill, but it’s clearly not the real Blue Morpho. Gary points out that it’s a homeless guy kind of dressed like the Morpho. Phantom Limb wants to accept it and consider the matter over. Wandering Spider’s widow slaps Dr Mrs. It’s an ugly scene. Gary decides he has to tell Dr. Mrs. the truth.
Back at Wide Wale’s building, Rocco orders Sirena to hide out in her room. (“If it was up to me, I’d put you up in the Plaza with every Nintendo game there is.”) Back at the Monarch’s home, Gary comes clean about the Blue Morpho. She can’t believe how stupid it sounds. Gary: “It’s dumb! We’re dumb! He did a dumb thing! We’re idiots!” Dr. Mrs. is worried, first, that Wide Wale is going to kill her husband. And if not, she’s going to have to publicly execute the Blue Morpho. Gary take her down to the basement to show her the headquarters but now it’s just a regular basement.
Monarch has a dream where he’s swimming in a purple ocean and invites Doc to join him. Doc complains that it’s freezing and Monarch says “You were never there for me” before being pulled back to consciousness. He begs Wide Wale to use chloroform if he wants to knock him out – “Haven’t you ever heard of a brain hemorrhage?” This segues into Monarch asking Wide Wale why he acts like he’s Italian since “Ong” sounds like a Chinese name. He says he’s English but his wife was Italian and also he did a semester abroad. Rocco and Monarch make fun of him, which is great.
Dr. Mrs. The Monarch and Gary visit Red Death at home. If you remember, he’s a super normal, loving dad at home. He has a daughter who also has a red skull for a face and he dotes on her. It’s so good. He sends her off to have a cupcake and then they talk business. He confirms that the Monarch is alive and tells them about Dr. Dugong. Gary remembers that name but points out he wasn’t even on that mission – they brought the Moppets. Hee! This show does a really good job of keeping track of who knows who. Red Death says he’ll help rescue him, but after that, he’s bringing Monarch’s head to the Guild. Dr. Mrs. proposes a plan where they can save her husband and get the Red Death a Council seat without killing anybody. (“I very much like to kill”.)
Gary and Dr. Mrs. wait in a limo outside of an OSI dummy corporations. (Actually called “Dummy Corp.”) Gary tries to make conversation while they wait for Red Death to finish before they just decide to go inside and not talk about sick playlists anymore. Sure enough, Red Death is busy killing.
Back in Wale’s building, Rocco tries to get Monarch to do Mad Libs with him. At Dummy Corp., Dr. Mrs. is looking through some old OSI files. Gary and Red Death get to chatting. Red talks about his lucky socks and Gary admits he smells his dead best friend’s glove before a mission. And then Red Death shows him that he still has an original ticket stub from Movie Night.
Back in the day, the Guild sent a team to try and take Jonas (Or somebody else. Let’s be honest, it was probably Rusty.) hostage. That was separate from the crew member snapping and opening the cargo bay doors. Red Death survived because he had to wear a full spacesuit as a disguise. He talks about how everybody died in gruesome detail. Dr. Mrs. finds the file she needs and tells Red Death to meet them at Wide Wale’s. She and Gary arrive at the building and she sends him to the roof. She beats up a couple of prawn guards and then we see the elevator, which is now going down instead of to the roof. Hank, as Enrico Matassa, enters in the lobby. Ah, now this episode matches up to last week’s timeline. By the way, the guards Dr. Mrs. knocks out aren’t the same ones that were incapacitated last week. The ones from last week were eating pizza and these guys complain about how they never save any pizza for them. So I’m still assuming Hank drugged the pizza and he got lucky that Dr. Mrs. took out the stragglers for him. Gary looks the other way so Hank won’t recognize him. Hank walks in and now we cut to last time we saw him, with Hank pointing a gun at the captive Monarch.
He’s shaking as the Monarch asks why he’s dressed like a gigolo and Hank confuses that with Juggalo. Wide Wale tells him if he pulls the trigger he can marry Sirena. Gary bursts in to stop him. “This isn’t Hank of you”. HEE! Wide Wale grabs the gun to finish the job and then Red Death bursts through the window, dragging Dr. Dugong behind him. He’s so full of starfish DNA that he grew his head back. OSI has been keeping him protected. Everybody pretends, for Dugong’s sake, that they’re all just messing around. Sirena asks what Hank is doing there (“I don’t remember.”) before meeting the uncle she never knew. Things are wrapped up.
But then the end of last week’s episode and the Ven-Tech Tower across the street looks like it’s trying to move.
In the tag, the Morpho Mobile appears and lands in front of the Venture Building. The Blue Morpho climbs out and heads for the entrance.
The Titmouse chirp this week is Rocco saying “What?” I think that’s their new thing this year, and I approve.
–I think I addressed most of the continuity as it came up this time. Also, Jackson and Doc say next week’s conclusion of the three-parter is “the most self-referential episode ever”. I’m going to have to rest up and stay hydrated for that. See you then!
Also, that Blue Morpho who shows up at the end is totally going to be Vendata, right?