Some excellent TV and a movie you've never heard of are the titles to watch this week.
The Venture Bros. - Season One
Everyone has their favorites on Adult Swim and this, by far, is mine. The animated adventures of Dr. Venture, his two Hardy Boys-wannabe tykes Hank and Dean, his impossibly buff bodyguard Brock Samson, their robot HELPeR, and the assorted villains, including the priceless Monarch, make for a Johnny Quest farce that, while not doing anything really new with the now typical deconstruction of the Saturday morning cartoon, just does it extremely well. It's also eminently quotable:
"I dare you to make less sense!"
"Now that we've exchanged pleasantries and hot panda milk, Dr. Venture, let's talk business."
"Smurfs don't lay eggs! I won't tell you this again! Papa Smurf has a fucking beard! They're mammals!"
"Hey, guess what? Nobody cares who would win in a crazy fantasy fist-fight between Anne Frank and Lizzy Borden. We never should have brought the henchmen! We're going to be the only ones there with henchmen!"
For context, you'll have to watch. Extras include commentary and a behind-the-scenes look at the non-existent live action feature.
In keeping with the Revolution Studios mandate to turn even the most promising projects into crap, this film, directed by Revolution czar Joe Roth, took a Richard Price adaptation of his own novel starring Sam Jackson, Julianne Moore, and Edie Falco and couldn't even get one-in-four critics to like it. Judging by the box office, audiences felt similarly. There are no features to speak of.
Ever wondered what Alyson Hannigan would look like in a fat suit? Watch the trailer and save yourself twenty bucks.
The features look more interesting than the movie. Along with two commentary tracks (including one from Hannigan and co-stars) is an "anti-commentary," plus something called "The Quickie" that purports to be the movie in six minutes, which sounds like a kindness.
Numb3rs: The Complete First Season
Proof that CBS can make something that appeals to people under 60, Numb3rs takes the math geek in all of us and gives him or her something constructive to do: namely, fight crime. David Krumholtz (Mr. Universe in Serenity) shines as said geek and Rob Morrow makes a welcome return to the tube as his FBI agent brother. Sabrina Lloyd (Sports Night) stuck around for a while this season as a fellow agent and Peter MacNicol steals nearly every scene he's in (much as he did on Ally McBeal) as über-geek to Krumholtz's normal-by-comparison geek. Lots of extras, including commentary and featurettes.