On Friday night of Comic-Con Xtine and I got to attend the Adult Swim-hosted Dethklok concert on the USS Midway aircraft carrier. I got in thanks to my spot-on Dr. Rockzo impression. After making our way past the Klokateers guarding the entrance, we were led up to the flight deck where docent Bob explained how the aircraft are launched, something I was actually interested in since my great-grandfather was captain of a pretty famous carrier during WWII. Then, to the foreboding sound of orchestral music piped over the deck, Dethklok arrived via helicopter.
The show itself took place in the hangar deck, which is filled with old planes on display since the carrier, decommissioned in 1992, is now a floating museum. I’ve lived in San Diego my whole life but had never been on the Midway before, so I was excited just to see inside, no to mention see the world’s best cartoon metal band–heck, one of the world’s best metal bands, period–play. For live purposes, Dethklok is Metalocalypse series creator (and voice of Nathan Explosion, Skwisgaar Skwigelf, and Pickles) Brendon Small on vocals and guitar, backed by professional metal players. In between songs the band would disappear while animated segments played on the screen behind the stage. My favorite was probably band mascot Facebones telling the guys in the crowd how to not be douchebags to the ladies.
About halfway through the set I had to get out of the crowd. Having a death metal show in what’s basically a big metal box with no a/c is a recipe for sweat, especially if you’ve been on your feet at the ‘con all day. I decided to hit up the free libations at the bars further back in the hangar. This turned out to be a great decision, because a number of the creative teams from various Adult Swim shows were hanging out back there. I got to meet Ben Edlund, creator of The Tick and writer for Supernatural (among other awesome credits; he looks like a psychedelic Jesus btw). Even cooler was that I got to meet and briefly chat with Doc Hammer, co-creator of The Venture Bros. He gave me multiple hugs for writing the Wikipedia article on his band, Weep, and is a very intriguing, animated individual and snappy dresser.
After the Dethklok show we hung around for the after-party featuring Girl Talk. I got into one of Adult Swim’s parties last year which also featured Girl Talk, and it is an experience to behold. If you haven’t listened to this DJ mashup schizoid genius before, all his stuff is available on his website on a pay-what-you-want basis. I highly recommend the 2010 album All Day (as a friend put it at the time: “Not as much energy, lower bpm, but Rihanna over Fugazi”).
Unfortunately we had to ditch out during Girl Talk to catch the last trolley of the night. Even so, this was easily the best experience of the entire ‘con for me and reaffirmed why Comic-Con is so great: Despite all the hassles of registering, transportation, crowds, endless queues, etc., you can still find yourself in randomly amazing circumstances, such as meeting the creators of one of your favorite TV shows in the belly of an aircraft carrier while a cartoon death metal band performs live behind you.