ATHF Wiki
Advertisement

Aqua Teen Forever: Plantasm is a direct-to-video movie based on Aqua Teen Hunger Force. It was announced on May 12, 2021. [1] It was made available for purchase on Blu-Ray, 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray, and digital purchase on November 8, 2022. [2] The film was made available on HBO Max on February 8, 2023 and aired on Adult Swim on March 12, 2023.[3] There was a special screening of the film at New York Comic Con on October 6. [4] This movie is a follow-up to the 2007 film Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters

Marketing and Release[]

On August 6, 2022, [adult swim] released a new teaser trailer for the movie on their YouTube page. [5] At this time, series co-creator Dave Willis issued a tweet to address concerns that [adult swim]'s parent company Warner Bros. Discovery might not release the film, where Willis suggested that the film has already reached completion while joking about screening it in his back yard should it be cancelled. [6] On September 8, 2022, [adult swim] quickly released a new trailer for the film. [7]

Plot Summary[]

Synopsis[]

The Aqua Teens are broken up. Master Shake is homeless, and Meatwad is sleeping at an animal shelter. Frylock has gotten a job at the web conglomerate Amazin. He assists and befriends his new boss the short, arrogant, ill-tempered Neil, who is assisted by the eccentric scientist Elmer. In hijinks suited for the show, this eventually leads to an invasion of plant monsters that threaten to take over the world.

Full Summary[]

The film opens with a story of how the Aqua Teens split up told by Shake. The Aqua Teens and Carl are on some form of space ship. Carl turns into a deformed monstrosity (in what seems to be a parody of John Carpenter's The Thing), and he then attacks the Aqua Teens while uttering several phrases from previous episodes. Shake performs several acts of heroics to save Frylock and Meatwad, but he ultimately makes too long a speech and causes all of them to be trapped in the explosion caused by a self-destruct mechanism aboard the ship.

In reality, Shake is living in a homeless shelter and was telling a made-up story about time travel to a space alien (also stuck at the homeless shelter) to try to sound cool. Meatwad is helping round up dogs for an animal shelter, where he is secretly sleeping at night. Frylock is living at an apartment and remembers how Shake sold his computer including his "cure for cancer" on the hard drive, which resulted in Frylock moving out of the Aqua Teen House to work at the IT department of Amazin. Frylock is told by his coworkers about the rumors surrounding their boss, who is reportedly very self-conscious about his short stature. The Llama Dolly (not to be confused with the Dhali Lama) is a tower where Neil the head of Amazin lives. In spite of the rumors, Frylock goes up there to assist his boss who is very frustrated by the fact that his machine isn't actually making him taller. Neil orders Frylock to fix the machine, but Frylock tells him that idea isn't likely to work. Instead, Frylock suggests cloning as a way of making Neil taller.

Neil warms up to Frylock almost immediately, and begins showing him around the Amazin' facility. While touring the fulfillment center, we are introduced to the Fraptaculans and the Japangaloids, two different races of aliens who hate each other. In order to prevent the two races from killing each other, Neil drugs them with what he calls "sub-mist." This sub-mist is a purple mist sprayed from various vents all over the facility. Once inhaled, the mist causes a person to become extremely docile and friendly.

Neil then brings Frylock to the Research and Development department, where he is introduced to Elmer who invented the stretching machine. Elmer is immediately fascinated by Frylock because he is a floating box of french fries but backs off once Frylock stuns him with his eye lasers. Neil invites Frylock to his house for dinner that night, and this makes Elmer jealous as he talks to his plants and feeds them manure. This ends with Frylock being mugged and brutally injured by thugs. Frylock wakes up in an infirmery, but Neil has ordered Elmer to invent a new box for Frylock's body, made of a substance called Brotanium, which pleases Frylock.

Meanwhile, Shake is desperate for a place to sleep, so he comes to Carl, who is interested in cashing in selling his house. Carl has gotten a better outlook on life due to the Aqua Teens moving out of their house, improving the value of his house substantially. Carl lets Shake sleep in a box in his backyard. Meatwad is eventually thrown out of the animal shelter where he was sleeping at night.

Frylock continues hanging out with Neil who shows signs of obsession. When Neil shoots an incredibly rare white tiger in his possession with a gun in an act of power, but Frylock is shocked and shows disapproval, which prompts Neil to beg for forgiveness. Frylock continues testing the cloning procedure with a Fraptaculan test subject, but this is unsuccessful. Frylock says he's certain they're close to correcting this mistake.

Meanwhile, Carl explains to Shake and Meatwad that they've been contracted to show the Amazin' employees the "benefits" of joining a union. This is actually a front by Neil. Carl destroys the cars the Amazin' employees sleep in to convince the employees that union members are hostile. Another group of thugs was hired to threaten the employees' livelihood if they were to join a union. A Japangaloid explains to Meatwad that Neil came to Planet Japanga in the Dolly Llama rocket ship. He pushed the planet closer to the sun, destroying their planet's ecosystem, and then released the sub-mist on them, forcing them to go into permanent work debt to him. The Fraptaculan who was cloned explains about Frylock posing as Phoenix, which agitates Shake. Shake, Meatwad, and Carl return to Carl's house in the daytime, and Carl explains that he'll be watering the house that night. The water causes the seeds in the many Amazin' delivery boxes to grow into killer plants, creating an immediate threat to Shake and Meatwad.

Ignignokt and Err interrupt the movie to "delete the following action sequence." Within the original narrative, Carl explains that the plants have chased Meatwad, Shake, and him to Berlin, Germany and then to Venice, Italy. Meatwad says he wants to contact Frylock via cell phone. Ignignokt and Err delete more of the movie and explain that it didn't advance the plot anyway.

At Amazin', Frylock has finally found a way to make the cloning procedure work with DNA from a giraffe and retired NBA legend Shawn Kemp (who plays himself in live action footage imposed on the animation). Elmer doesn't think the procedure will work. The procedure is technically a success as it clones a tall Neil, but the clone immediately starts fighting with the original Neil. "Big Neil" throws Shawn Kemp out the window, killing him, and Big Neil grabs the original Neil and stuffs him into a box with some help from Elmer. Frylock feels guilty about this mess he's created and drills an "air hole" into the box (which injures the original Neil). Big Neil says Frylock is now in charge of Research & Development while Elmer is the in charge of "suckling [his] dong." Elmer starts to question Big Neil after he betrayed the original Neil, and Frylock receives many texts consisting of emojis from Meatwad.

Meatwad finally gets Frylock on the phone and with a little encouragement from Shake, they tell Frylock to come to Carl's house to help Meatwad under the pretense of Meatwad having "foot cancer" and "Syphilis." Frylock is allowed to leave in a hurry to help Shake, Meatwad, and Carl. Elmer informs Big Neil that they have spied on Shake and Carl, and Elmer formally reveals his plan to conquer the planet with plant monsters, but Big Neil just wants the "broad strokes" of the plan.

Frylock arrives in Neil's limousine, and sees Meatwad, covered in white spray paint by Shake and wearing a wig Carl purchased on Ebay and Frylock says that Meatwad's temperature is 43 degrees. Shake and Carl reveal themselves. Shake, Carl, and Meatwad inquire to Frylock what the Amazin' boxes are made of, why they were delivered to houses with nobody living in them, and why some of them turned into plant monsters, but Frylock doesn't want to hear it. he's tired of Shake (Frylock really hates taking orders from Shake) and he leaves in the limousine heading back to Amazin'.

Meanwhile, the Fraptaculans and Japangaloids have the votes to make the company go union. At a stockholders' meeting, Frylock suggests the sub-mist is bad for PR, but Big Neil releases a ton of sub-mist and fires all the aliens in favor of plant monsters serving Amazin' employees. The seeds to grow the plant monsters were developed from a substance synthesized using Frylock's Jewel of Idahocules. Frylock has had enough of Neil and Elmer, saying that they suck worse than his roommates Shake and Meatwad so he leaves Amazin' using the truck driving it and he sets out to rescue Meatwad, Shake, and Carl.

Frylock gives Shake and Meatwad yard tools, and they all do yard work by fighting many, many plant monsters, by destroying them but when they are about to be overwhelmed by the shear numbers. Carl runs over many of them in 2 Wycked, blasting rock music, and tells the Aqua Teens to get in. They then flee together to "Used Baby Wipe Mountain."

Big Neil is upset and says that "Frylock still works here," but Elmer is fired. Elmer eats some of the seeds and drinks water, transforming him into Elm a giant tree monster who sicks the plant workers on Neil. Both Neils escape in the Dolly Llama spaceship.

Frylock texts his resignation letter to Neil, but Shake attempts to explain his plan to save the day (which is not actually real). Both Neils track down and find Frylock thanks to tracking cookies Frylock says he's done with Big Neil & Neli but both Neils apologize and they say they're sorry and that they love Frylock very much and they ask Frylock, Meatwad, Shake and Carl to stop the plants. After a "fake out" credits sequence, Meatwad and Carl explain that they can use the Dolly Llama to move the moon to block out the sun. Frylock, however, wants Shake, Meatwad, and Carl to stay on Earth. Frylock leaves with both Neils to execute this plan. Carl decides to make the best of the situation to help save the planet from Amazin'. Carl makes a speech about destroying the planets with his "toxic masculinity," which results in Carl turning 2 Wycked into a plant-destroying monster, and by the end of a training montage (again interrupted by Ignignokt and Err), Carl is incredibly buff and ready to kill plants.

Elm is raising his army of plants to "reclaim the planet." Big Neil can barely pilot the Dolly Llama because the controls are in a tuxedo made for the original Neil, who begs them to let him take control of the spaceship. Ignignokt and Err (within the original narrative) attack the Dolly Llama with a giant mech. It is now that original Neil informs he and Elmer lied about Brotanium, so Frylock cannot take down the Mooninites' mech.

Back on Earth, Carl, Shake, and Meatwad destroy many more plants with blades and poison. The giant Elm finally confronts the trio, but Carl, Shake, and Meatwad each throw their own flaming bottles at Elm, who walks it off with water, which rejuvenates him. The Japangaloids and Fraptaculans take a final stand against Elm and the plants.

Back on the moon, the original Neil finally puts on the tuxedo controls and defeats the Mooninites' mech in a final battle. The 2D Mooninites' mech is knocked over, and thus Ignignokt and Err cry and beg for forgiveness (which is skipped over by the hijacking Ignignokt and Err). The Llama Dolly is then able to finally create an eclipse, which defeats Elm and the plants. Unfortunately, the lack of sun causes an unnatural winter. Both Neils are subdued peacefully when Frylock uses the sub-mist on both of them. They offer Frylock his job back, but Frylock refuses. Carl is freezing and upset about his house being worthless, but the aliens put Carl in a shedded husk of a Fraptaculan filled with Japangaloid slime. The Neils agree to move everything to a new Alabama location but are promptly slaughtered by the aliens. Frylock apologizes and says he's ready to rejoin the Aqua Teens and Carl. However, the aliens are all hungry and eat the Aqua Teens, thus killing them.

The movie ends with a post-credits scene in which Markula feeds Carl the remaining french fries and Carl says he feels guilty that he was neighbors with someone once and Markula says he's in the mood for ice cream so he then drinks the ice cream from Shake's body. As a result, Shake emerges as a vampire bat and yells out, "I smell a sequel!"

Cast (in order of appearance)[]

Bonus Features[]

The physical release of the film includes director's commentary for the film. Dave Willis, Dana Snyder, Carey Means, and several crew members are present for the commentary, but co-creator Matt Maiellaro is completely absent. Willis said in the commentary track that Maiellaro was uninterested in joining the recording session. The commentary track is extremely informal with many tangential discussions. The commentary track does provide inside information about the production of the feature (such as the people who inspired the creation of character Neil), but by the midway point, the discussion has very little to do with the film, with the crew aware of this fact by the end of the audio discussion.

Trivia[]

  • Elmer refers to Frylock's laser vision by "light amplified by stimulated emission of radiation." This may go over many people's heads, but laser is an acronym derived from this series of technical jargon.
  • Neil insults The Mooninites by calling them "8-bit." There is not really a good answer as to whether or not Ignignokt and Err would be 8-bit sprites. The Mooninites were originally inspired by the urban legend (later confirmed as actually having happened) of many returned copies of E.T. The Extra Terrestrial for the Atari 2600 being buried under cement in the desert.[8] This game was not 8-bit, but at the same time, the Mooninites would not be able to exist as sprites in an Atari 2600 since their bodies are composed of two different sizes of pixels.
  • This is the first time Err finally changes his facial expressions.
  • The acronym for Meatwad's superhero costume "Macaroni Man" and his superhero costume in Super Hero "Mister Mister" are the same
  • Neil's stretching machine is similar in concept to a medieval torture rack
  • Frylock says Meatwad's temperature is 43 degrees and says that's "normal" for Meatwad, which would mean Meatwad is normally in the temperature "danger zone" for food, which is anything above 40F and below 140F. Bacteria grows quickly at these temperatures, which could explain why Meatwad is often described with words like "festering"
  • Meatwad was pretending to be sick with foot cancer.
  • Master Shake borrowed boxes from people's porches when Frylock asks where Shake got all them boxes from.
  • At the end of this film Frylock apologizes and asks if he can rejoin the Aqua Teens after all the trouble he helped cause. Shake, not wanting him back, says the existing Aqua Teens would have to vote for it as Carl and Meatwad don't look particularly moved or interested in his return, only for Carl and Meatwad to raise their hands before Shake could finish. Shake gives excuses as to why their votes don't count. Shake puts Meatwad on probation and Shake says Carl is not an Official Aqua Teen.
  • In Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters, there is a tanning salon named “Tantasm”
  • At one in production, the wife of series co-creator Dave Willis was going to appear as the lady in Amazin's TI department. According to the commentary for the movie, the scene was sent back with notes multiple times before the character design was changed.
  • This is the second time to have a post credits scene. The first time was "The Greatest Story Ever Told" episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force.
  • Unlike the previous film, many recurring characters that appeared throughout the series do not appear in this movie at all such as Oglethorpe, Emory, Dr. Weird, Steve, MC Pee Pants, Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future, Jimmy Tree Wizard, and George Lowe.
  • When Err said "Bathe in the blood of your bitch master." This shows the same quote that was used on one of Matt Maiellaro's projects from "Stiff" and "12 oz. Mouse".

Continuity Nods[]

  • While the show is known for having barely any continuity, a multitude of characters, particularly one-time villains and "monsters of the week," were brought back.
  • Frylock presumably uses contact lenses as a contact lens case is seen next to his bed when he wakes up. This is, of course, a nod to "Laser Lenses" where the lenses were the source of his laser vision.
  • When taking Exit 139 to go to Used Babywipe Mountain State Park, viewers can see a far shot that shows signs for upcoming exits on the highway. Exit 140 leads to The Castle Weird and Exit 143 A - B leads to the Trenton Tar Pits. The Castle Weird is mostly likely referring to Dr. Weird's castle, and the Trenton Tar Pits were originally seen in "PDA."
  • The "fake out" credits resemble the credits for the first seven seasons of the show (though it's not clear if this is a recreation or reused footage at this time).
  • According to director's commentary, Neil's stretching machine was made to resemble the Insanoflex from the first film.

Allusions and Reference[]

  • The title "Plantasm" is an allusion to the film series “Phantasm", of which co-creator Matt Maiellaro is a fan.
  • Amazin is quite obviously a parody of Amazon.com, Inc.
  • Oddly enough, Neil was inspired by Jack Dorsey, according to the director's commentary.
  • The opening sequence to the film is a reference to the films Space Jam and Space Jam: A New Legacy.
  • Carl's monster transformation in Shake's flashback appears to be based on John Carpenter's The Thing. The design may have also been inspired by the 1979 film Alien directed by Ridley Scott.
  • Neil references Elon Musk in one scene. Elon Musk is the richest man in the world (as of November 2022 when the film came out). He is known for Tesla, Inc. and his efforts to colonize Mars in real life.
  • There are several examples of background music meant to sound like existing songs from throughout pop culture. The most glaring example is a song similar to "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor during the training montage (which is then skipped over by the Mooninites). There is also a song that is meant to sound like "More Than a Feeling" by Boston (which was stated by Carl to be his favorite song).
  • At the end of the film, the writers take a jab at Georgia being a "right to work" state, which means royalties (including those from the show Aqua Teen Hunger Force) are not guaranteed to actors and etcetera. This fact has left Carey Means (the voice of Frylock) in financial trouble in recent years.
  • Neil claims that Frylock's new box is made out of "Brotanium" which he describes as being even stronger than Vibranium, the fictional metal in the Marvel universe.
  • While tagging the dilapidated remains of the Aqua Teen house, Carl says "Warriors! Come out and play-ay!" which is a reference to the 1979 film "The Warriors"
  • According to the director's commentary, a draft of this movie featured a different climax. An action sequence with the Llama Dolly was deemed too similar to an existing sequence in an Austin Powers movie. Willis claimed that the similarity was unintended but that he was familiar with the other movie.

References[]

  1. D'Alessandro, Anthony. "Adult Swim Has Three Movies In The Works For ‘Aqua Teen Hunger Force’, ‘The Venture Bros.’ & ‘Metalocalypse’," Deadline. https://deadline.com/2021/05/adult-swim-movies-for-aqua-teen-hunger-force-metalocalypse-the-venture-bros-1234754652/ Published May 12, 2021. Accessed August 6, 2022
  2. Latchem, John. "‘Aqua Teen Forever: Plantasm’ Movie Heads Home Nov. 8," Media Play News. https://www.mediaplaynews.com/aqua-teen-forever-plantasm-movie-heads-home-nov-8/ Published August 6, 2022. Accessed August 6, 2022.
  3. Yavasile, Nicole. WarnerMedia. https://pressroom.warnermedia.com/us/media-release/adult-swim-0/adult-swim-orders-new-episodes-iconic-series-aqua-teen-hunger-force Published January 25, 2023. Retrieved January 25, 2023.
  4. Valdez, Nick. "Aqua Teen Forever: Plantasm Will Have World Premiere at NYCC" https://comicbook.com/anime/news/aqua-teen-forever-plantasm-world-premiere-nycc-panel-schedule-adult-swim/ Published September 12, 2022. Accessed September 12, 2022.
  5. "Aqua Teen Hunger Force: Plantasm | FIRST LOOK | Adult Swim Festival 2022." YouTube, uploaded by Adult Swim, August 6, 2022, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imwKQaopxYM Retrieved August 7, 2022.
  6. @DaveWillis2 "Movie is done! If it gets cancelled, I will screen it for free in my back yard." Twitter, August 6, 2022. Retrieved August 31, 2022.
  7. "Aqua Teen Forever: Plantasm | OFFICIAL TRAILER | adult swim" YouTube, uploaded by Adult Swim, September 8, 2022, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnYHRG0x1N0 Retrieved September 12, 2022.
  8. Aqua Teen Hunger Force Volume One DVD commentary for "Mayhem of the Mooninites."
Advertisement