NYCC | Robot Chicken Panel
Seth Green led an all-star lineup for the Robot Chicken panel at New York Comic Con, bringing with him more than a few surprises, including the announcement of a DC Comics special, an update on the Star Wars animated comedy, and a former child star simulating sexual acts on stage.
On hand were Green’s Robot Chicken co-creator Matthew Senreich, writers Kevin Shinick and Doug Goldstein, voice actress (and Green’s wife) Clare Grant, DC Entertainment’s Geoff Johns, an unannounced appearance by Macaulay Culkin, and moderator Keith Crawford, vice president of production of Adult Swim on Cartoon Network.
“Welcome to the second annual meeting of the silly hat club,” Crawford said as the irreverent panel kicked off. Every member of the panel wore brightly colored fuzzy cat-ear hats.
Crawford sent the crowd into hysterics when he causally introduced Culkin who, as Green frequently pointed out, only makes about two public appearances a year.
Unsurprisingly, though, the crowd reaction to Green’s introduction dwarfed even Culkin’s own.
Green himself introduced Johns as a “general all-around badass and super-nice guy.” Johns, like Culkin, was a previously unannounced guest. The writer has contributed to Robot Chicken, and worked on one of the Star Wars specials.
“Macaulay Culkin could literally spend the next three years at home, never ever venturing from his house and still remain more relevant than anyone in this room,” Green said. “I would like to thank [Culkin] for joining us on [his] second annual public appearance.”
“We are always really excited to be here, because we feel we are amongst our people,” Green said.
He quickly dived into the shilling portion of the panel, telling fans the second half of the fifth season would premiere Oct. 23 on Adult Swim, followed on Oct. 25 by the release of the Season 5 DVD box set. As a brave marketing experiment by Adult Swim, the box set will contain nine unaired upcoming episodes, including the show’s landmark 100th.
“So all your friends who don’t have the DVDs, you can trump those losers. Wait for it on TV, jerk!” Green joked.
The DVD and Blu-ray box set also includes previously banned segment in which Beavis and Butt-Head join the Teen Titans and the Archie/Final Destination mash-up.
With the shilling out of the way, the panelists turned to the Q&A.
A fan who appeared to be in his thirties told Culkin that the first time he got to second base with a girl was while watching his 2004 movie Saved. “That came out recently,” Green joked.
He then asked whether there were any plans for Mass Effect sketches (Green voices a character named the Joker in the video-game series).
Green said that while everyone there is a huge fan of the game, there are no definite plans to include it on the show. He did say, however, he had recorded the voiceovers for the next game in the series, and “it’s just gonna blow your fucking mind.”
Will Green and Grant ever do another “Team Unicorn” video? Grant said that they’ve done more music videos, and Green “may or may not have rapped in them.”
Goldstein told a fan that the length of each segment lasts as long as it needs to be funny. “Which is why they’re very short,” Shinick added.
The next person at the mic revealed he named his dog “Bitch Pudding” after a joke on the show, and is teaching it to bark every time he says, “What’s up ho?” He then gave a few ideas for new sketches, including having Jabba the Hutt going to Jenny Craig.
“This is not a pitch session,” Green interrupted partway through the man’s second idea, to the cheering approval of the crowd.
Senreich did tell the fan that “bitch pudding” would be in the 100th episode.
A woman asked if they planned to use the recent Necca Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle toys in any sketches. Green said no, but that he loved those figures and owned a complete set himself.
A young female fan asked Green why he was so awesome. “Because when I was your age, I set out to be,” he replied.
What’s a typical writing day like? “If you see a sketch and you’re like, ‘That’s really random,’ it’s probably because we made it up on the spot,” Goldstein answered.
Who would win in a fight, Master Chief from Halo or Boba Fett from Star Wars?
Green deferred to Johns, who said that, although he loves Halo, he thought Boba Fett would “kick the hell out of him.”
“Look for that crossover comic soon,” Johns added.
Green then pointed out a Family Guy Boba Fett chicken outfit in the crowd, saying “I will see you in the parking lot,” in a Peter Griffin voice.
“I don’t do Peter, please don’t tell Seth [MacFarlane] I did that!” he quickly added.
A female fan asked why they don’t have any women writers on staff. A few fans in the audience booed, although it was unclear where that was in response to the question or to the lack of female writers.
“Don’t boo, please girls, please, if you’re awesome and can write for our show send us stuff so we can hire you,” Green said.
“I have a packet I can give you right now,” the fan replied, to the cheers of the crowd.
Green revealed he approached Frank Oz to voice Yoda for the Star Wars episode, but that Oz didn’t want to play a parody of his iconic character.
“He thought if it was a parody, it should be a parody voice, and I totally respected that,” Green said. “George [Lucas] and Lucasfilm have been really fucking lenient, though.”
Green was asked strike a sexy pose by a fan who had the same request at two previous Robot Chicken panels. Green agreed, and brought Culkin into the act. They both pretended to have sex with a doll of Green before they pantomimed making out with each other. Culkin took it to the next level, though, and began actually licking the length of Green’s face, which, of course, drove the crowd wild.
Johns was finally asked a question but before the fan could answer, Green interrupted to shout, “I know, Geoff Johns in the house!”
Green went on to mock the fans that make up the panels Johns usually sit on, pretending to push up glasses on his nose and ask insanely detailed questions about Green Lantern minutiae.
“This is not his usual panel,” Green said.
“This is how we act on weekends, not on the panels,” Johns added.
A fan also asked Green if he thought the ship had sailed on Star Wars humor.
Green revealed he’s been working for some time now on an animated Star Wars comedy for Lucasfilm. “Everybody’s sort of aware of that, even though we can’t discuss it,” he said. “I can tell you that comedy in the Star Wars universe is absolutely not exhausted. I literally can’t wait until we can share this with you guys. It’s funny, it’s really fucking funny.”
One fan showed the panel his unique haircut, which featured the symbols of the different Lantern Corps shaved into his head and dyed their respective colors. Green asked him to approach the table, and Shinick added, “Dude, if I was gay I’d ask you out.”
“At first, I thought you were Wesley Snipes from Demolition Man,” Green said. “Simon Phoenix,” Culkin added in a wry drawl.
Green responded to a request for more live-action acting roles and said he made two indy movies over the summer, The Story of Luke and Sexy Evil Genius.
“I’ve just been busy making awesome stuff for all of us,” he added.
A DC Comics Robot Chicken episode was then announced as the show’s next special. Senreich said Johns will join them on the writing staff for the episode, which will most likely air next summer.
“A veritable all-star team,” Green said.