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BRENDON SMALL Is Still Bothered By Metalocalypse’s Cancellation: “I Don’t Really Know What Happened”


Dethklok, the fictional yet beloved heavy-metal band from the animated series Metalocalypse, has resonated deeply with fans around the globe. Despite being a creation of animation and imagination, the band has amassed a devoted following, blurring the lines between reality and fiction.

The intensity of their music, combined with the show’s dark humor and over-the-top antics, struck a chord with metal enthusiasts who found themselves emotionally invested in the band’s fate. This emotional investment was put to the test when Metalocalypse was unexpectedly canceled by Adult Swim in 2015. Fans were left in a state of mourning, grappling with the end of a band that had never truly existed outside the TV screen.

Now, in a recent interview with New Noise Magazine, show co-creator Brendon Small expressed his confusion over such cancellation. When asked about the claim that the show ended due to high production costs, Small responded: “That’s news to me, that a TV show is more costly than a tour—especially because you integrate so many visuals and multimedia. I read that the reason Metalocalypse ended was because it was getting too expensive.”

He continued to explain that he wasn’t sure if this was entirely true. According to Small, the show had always been produced on a relatively low budget, cheaper than most animated shows. He emphasized that one of the key aspects of the project was creating the show they wanted with limited resources, noting that their budget was similar to most other Adult Swim shows.

“I don’t know if that’s totally true. Maybe that was the rationale, but our show has always been so cheap to produce. Cheaper than most animated shows, even. That was one of the defining aspects of the project: How do we make a show that we want to make with a pretty low budget? Our show budget was pretty similar to most Adult Swim show budgets; we were in the same ballpark.”

Small mentioned that they had a four-season contract and beyond that, he wasn’t certain what happened.

“We just had a four-season contract and beyond that… I don’t really know what happened. Touring has gotten way more expensive, but I don’t know if those are related topics. It’s hard to compare one to the other because one of them involves employing animators and different unions and things like that. Making a TV show may be more expensive than touring, but still, someone’s gotta front the money, someone’s gotta take the risk… I’m not interested in working in the red and hoping that merch pays off.”

Small also speculated that part of the reason for the show’s end could be that it felt like the story had been concluded – or perhaps not. Small said in a recent interview with Heavy Consequence that there’s one song on Dethalbum IV that could evolve into the next storyline for the band.

“It’s a more bold move to end your story, and so we’re gonna go ‘okay. This is it. But if there were… look, there’s one idea I have – and this is where I do get coy – I have one idea and I don’t know if it’ll ever come to fruition at all, but there’s a song that embodies what I think the next version [of Dethklok] would be.

“I don’t know that we’ll ever get there because I mean again, we need somebody else to pay for it. But there’s one song on the record that I think kind of embodies what the future would be. I don’t know if it would be as mystical or as crazy, but it would be funny.”

So don’t hold your breath for a sequel to Metalocalypse: Army Of The Doomstar anytime soon, but know that the door ain’t completely closed on Metalocalypse just yet.

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