After 7 seasons, 81 episodes, and 16+ years, Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer announced in early September that Adult Swim had notified them "a few months ago" that the series would not be returning for the eighth season (though work on the season was already underway). Now, the co-creators are opening up to NPR about the series end, the possibility of more The Venture Bros. down the road, and more. Regarding the unexpected news, the duo admits that while their plans for the series were to keep the series open-ended when it did end its run, the seventh season finale was too open-ended and not how they envisioned the final run.
"We would never end the show with one of our characters [Hank] going away," Hammer explained. "We have a character walking away from the Venture family, which is not the way Jackson and I think of the Ventures. There is love and family at the core of all this, and yes [it's] dysfunctional… but love and family is a deep part of our show. And to have somebody flip his gears and just go off in search for himself… that's not the kind of ending we would ever write. That doesn't feel good to me."
But even with an ending they may not have wanted or expected, Publick and Hammer haven't lost their deep appreciation for the series, its influence on television, and its devoted fanbase. "I am proud that we made something almost entirely on our terms and it worked," Publick says. "I didn't know how much we would mean to a lot of people, and to know that that's from just spilling your guts and trying your hardest to make the thing as good by your standards as possible… means a lot."
"When you're a writer and people give you advice, they say write what you know, which is really shorthand for write who you are: Write your experiences, write your truth, don't second guess other people's expectations, don't take somebody else's voice and use it as your own, write what you truly are," Hammer continued. "I have done a lot of things creatively in my life, but 'The Venture Bros.' is the one where we threw out the idea of trying to be anybody else… mainly because we can't! We can't show up at the party as like the most popular guy, but we can show up at the party with a car shaped like a butterfly."
That said, there's a chance that there might be more Venture Bros. in the (near?) future, with Adult Swim expressing at the time news of the cancellation broke that there was an interest in more. And while Publick and Hammer are doubtful that the series will return on either some regular or semi-regular basis, the duo said that there have been talks about a wrap-up special. "In my deepest dreams, I want to be something like 'Star Trek,' where two years later people go 'The fans have spoken — you're coming back!'" Hammer said. "I'd be like hold on, let me dust off my idiocy and get right back to it."
Unfortunately, it's true: #VentureBros has been canceled. We got the highly disappointing news a few months ago, while we were writing what would have been season 8. We thank you, our amazing fans, for 17 years of your kind (and patient) attention. And, as always, We Love You.
— Jackson Publick (@jacksonpublick) September 7, 2020