We’re almost done with this comprehensive review of Tenacious D’s “Post-Apocalypto”. Today, we’ll be looking at the penultimate chapter. I’ll just say that this was another fun one, even if it failed to really deliver on every level. It’s full of cliches, and tying-up loose ends. To be honest, it was a bit of a disappointment after the surprise and delight I experienced while watching Chapter 4 – “Robot”. Still, it’s fun.
Up until “Robot”, “Post-Apocalypto” barely exhibited any signs of maintaining a sense of continuity or reason. The change and success of “Robot’ had to do with the character of the robot himself. He remains the only character so far who has gone through anything remotely resembling an arc. Jack and Kyle feel so static in comparison, which is ironic, since they’re our two main characters (and humans) in the story.
Chapter 5 – “Donald”
If you couldn’t guess it by the title, this is the episode in which Jack and Kyle confront Donald Trump. No, not the orange-skinned baboon you’re probably thinking of, but his son. Apparently in “Post-Apocalypto”‘s future, he takes control of the White House, and surrounds it with lots of KKK guards.
But let’s not get distracted from our story. We open with Jack, Kyle, and Robot spying on the White House from the top of a hill. They get caught by three patrolling guards, who are all quickly knocked out by Robot. After some deliberation, the team disguises themselves as KKK members, and try to sneak in.
Here we get a quick song by the KKK soldiers. Mostly, it’s a marching tune that denounces “gays” from the perspective of the soldiers. Strangely, they never say anything about race, but only single out homosexuality because, “That’s what the lord say”. It was a pretty silly song, but still made me concerned. Because looking at the state of our country now, a gang of Nazi’s guarding the White House doesn’t seem as outlandish as it should. Hits a bit too close to home. But I suppose that was the idea, to some extent.
Anyway, they manage to sneak inside. And who are they to find, but Donald Jr. with the Crystal of Gilgamesh. He melts a soldier in front of their eyes with it, then orders another one to come and suck on his you-know-what. Robot takes the honors, and as he’s distracting D.J., Kyle grabs the Crystal.
But of course, they’re found out! Donald Jr. calls in his guards, but they all fall to Robot’s bullets. Then he summons the Gorgon a snake-like monster, who is impervious to Robot’s bullets. Oh, no! But because the Gorgon likes to play with his food, he threatens Jack in front of Kyle to make him suffer. This enrages Kyle so much that he activates the power of the Crystal, causing the Gorgon to melt into the floor.
Suddenly, Donald Jr. sees the error of his ways.
Song – “Colors”
Here, Donald Jr. sings a song containing the epiphany that he can’t continue the cycle of violence and rage he inherited from his family. This is a great song that actually addresses real-world issues, which is possibly a first for Tenacious D. “What was I thinking? / All this rage, it’s the end of the world / Spreading my hatred / I must sound insane to every boy and every girl”.
Another particularly poignant line is “Colors are the thing that make the world better
/ I’ve been seeing things in black and white”.
Unfortunately, for D.J., his song is ultimately insincere, and he was only using it to buy some time and snag the crystal. But before he can use it, Robot blasts him with a barrage of bullets.
Overall, I appreciated the fact that Tenacious D were unafraid to speak their minds and write about the nature of the political landscape. What more can we ask artists to do but to share their perspectives and insight? I know words like “perspective” and “insight” aren’t the first that come to mind when you hear the name “Tenacious D”. But this episode proved that they’re at least capable of more than they allow themselves.
I found myself wishing that the whole story of “Post-Apocalypto” had revolved more strongly around the themes in “Donald”. They could have built up tension and suspense by encountering Nazi’s sooner, and maybe portrayed them as an orc-like force of evil. But it would have forced them to actually make some edits, and probably cut out more nude scenes and genital monsters than they wanted to.
At the end of this episode, our heroes take Air Force One and are off to Egypt, to save the world. Next time, we’ll be wrapping up our discussion of “Post-Apocalypto”, and take a look at the season finale.