|The Venture Bros. character|
The Saphrax Protocol
|Full name||Gary Fischer|
Henchman 21 |
Jake Cutter (on forged arching license ID card)
Kano (vigilante alias)
Henchman (current) |
Agency Commander (formerly)
The Fluttering Horde
Henchman 24 (Former best friend, deceased)
The Venture Family (helped on several occasions when broke away from The Monarch)
Dr. Thaddeus "Rusty" Venture (The Monarch's archenemy)
Fiends and Family Plan signers
Kevin and Tim-Tom (deceased)
Long Division (during SPHINX days)
Professor Vibrations (deceased)
S.P.H.I.N.X. Commander (the real one, deceased)
Henchman 21 (real name: Gary Fischer) is a henchman of The Monarch and a major recurring character on The Venture Bros. As confirmed by his fellow henchmen, he is actually Henchman 1 as of Season 4, due to becoming a competent fighter.
- 1 History
- 2 Personality
- 3 Relationships With Other Characters
- 4 Episode Appearances
- 5 Trivia
- 6 Gallery
Life Before Becoming a Henchman
Gary Fischer was originally a stereotypical nerd who enjoyed comic books and fantasy/scifi genres until he joined The Monarch and The Fluttering Horde. He was kidnapped by The Monarch's henchmen at the age of 15, during an eighth grade field trip to Washington, D.C. The henchmen had mistaken the larger-than-average Gary for their intended kidnapping victim, Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell, believing the biggest person must be the most important. An enraged Monarch ordered they kill Gary but the latter joined their ranks instead.
Earning His Wings
Members of The Fluttering Horde go through an initiation ritual called "earning your wings" before promotion to full henchmen. Gary earned his wings at sixteen when he abandoned the main fight and took credit for killing Professor Vibrations, one of The Monarch's nemeses. Gary didn't have to lift a finger to defeat Professor Vibrations, as the scientist spontaneously fell over dead with excitement at the chance to kill Gary.
Life as a Henchman
Despite his tragic history, Gary would come to enjoy the henchman lifestyle and rise through the ranks to become Henchman 21. During this time, he earned his GED (in case his life as a henchman failed), and befriended a fellow henchman, Henchman 24.
In the first three seasons, 21 and 24 serve as comic relief for the show, usually having arguments about trivial topics like their jobs, movies, nerd culture, or any sexual experiences each might have had. For a while, the two thought they were invincible as they had survived so many missions no matter how dangerous and emerged without a scratch.
In the finale of season 3, the two sneak into the Monarch Mobile to hide from the ensuing chaos around them. Sadly, H.E.L.P.eR. takes the car and 24 (who is trapped in the car by his seat belt) is killed in a sudden explosion with his head landing in 21's hands. As a result of 24's death, 21 experiences an emotional breakdown and an identity crisis throughout the next two seasons as he attempts to cope with his traumatic loss.
General 21 / Two-Ton 21
In the fourth season, 21 has undergone an intense training regimen to allow him to safeguard the lives of his fellow henchmen. He took a sabbatical from his henching and returned to his former life, but soon grew tired of it. He began training using a fat kid as a weight set. After several months, he was much stronger and returned to his henching career and reformed them into a deadly force. He does this for them as he couldn't do it for Henchman 24 and is held in high regard by his fellows. He also got a tattoo across his abdomen reading "Hench 4 Life." Gary quickly turns the Monarch's men into a professional group of killers and becomes something of a commander to them, even capable of demoting the others and ordering them around. They both fear and respect him, with the henchmen calling him General 21 or Two-Ton 21. Though Gary has become something of a #1 within the ranks of the Monarch's organization he refuses to change his number, keeping it the same throughout his tenure. His new strength has led to him becoming well known in the villain's community for his effectiveness and lethality. His newfound command made him and The Monarch a much deadlier foe to Venture and Hatred who originally saw him as nothing more then an annoyance. In Pinstripes & Poltergeists, Henchman 21 challenges Brock Samson to a fist fight which shows the results of his training has paid off. Even though Brock beats him, Samson had to admit that Gary has progressed well and even goes as far to show a bit of pride in fact that this dramatic transformation was inspired, in part, by him. The fact that Brock himself complimented his skills shows how good he has truly become. The relationship between the two is explored more in Season 5 where Brock is seen taking a degree of responsibility for Gary. Brock even cooperated with 21 in taking down Monstroso.
Whenever he is alone 21 talks to the decomposing skull of 24, which had landed in his arms after the explosion at the end of season 3. He talks to it throughout the fourth season, believing that he is speaking to the spirit of his dead friend, and eventually appears to see 24 as a ghostly apparition. Their conversations were frequently about the search for 24's killer and seeped into 21's daily life, sometimes even during conversations with The Monarch and/or Dr. Girlfriend. He even went as far as making a kill list of possible suspects. He has also developed a good relationship with The Monarch, who has made him his bodyguard and sees 21 as a completely infallible super-soldier (even after 21's eventual departure from his crew). He also harbors some kind of infatuation with the Monarch's wife, Dr. Girlfriend aka Dr. Mrs. The Monarch, and would confess his feelings to her before openly kissing her on top of the Monarch's unconscious body (originally as part of diversion from The Monarch's use of technology black-listed by The Guild of Calamitous Intent of which the Monarch is now a member). His responsibilities as a servant of The Monarch's is extended to doing solo missions and he is seen as a major influence in the cocoon even sometimes viewed as a threat to the Monarchs authority though this is later resolved.
In Operation P.R.O.M. he goes over to the Venture Compound to bury 24's skull as 24's ghost had begun to pop up at inconvenient times such as when 21 is masturbating. While seeking closure, 21 is shot in the chest by Sergeant Hatred while he's trying to one-up Shore Leave's marksmanship. The S.P.H.I.N.X. agent took the unconscious henchman back to Headquarters. 21 awakens in unfamiliar surroundings, but is impressed by what he sees. After finding out it was S.P.H.I.N.X. that captured Monstroso, Shore Leave tells him they plan on wiping his memory but this is soon changed when a group of Monstroso henchmen arrive at the compound. Undermanned, Shore Leave invites 21 to join them on their skirmish. Upon defeating the henchmen, 21 thinks he's found his true calling and begins to ignore 24 in lieu of attending the prom instead. He later finds out that 24's ghost isn't real as one of the ghosts 24 was with turns out to be alive and a friend of Jefferson Twilight. Upon the realization that he has truly lost his friend altogether, 21 breaks down. 21 later tells his bosses he quits and admits his feelings toward Dr. Girlfriend and that he kissed her on top of the Monarch. This doesn't bother The Monarch as it turns out that most super-villains are swingers. This revelation causes 21 to lose it and prompts him to curse them out before storming off to join S.P.H.I.N.X. as he believes he will make a better hero than a villain.
In What Color is Your Cleansuit? Gary is awakened in S.P.H.I.N.X. headquarters surrounded by O.S.I agents led by Col. Hunter Gathers (currently commanding the O.S.I.) who questions him as to who he is, why he is in the S.P.H.I.N.X. uniform, and the location of Brock and Shore Leave. Hunter later takes the S.P.H.I.N.X. staff to return to their old positions at the O.S.I.
Gary asks Brock if he can join the O.S.I., and when Brock turns him down he asks "What about S.P.H.I.N.X.?" to which Brock replies it was all his as the rent's paid up for the rest of the year. Gary views this as a new opportunity to live his new dream of being a "good guy" and takes up the mantle of S.P.H.I.N.X. Commander. Gary soon tries to recreate S.P.H.I.N.X. and starts recruiting. However, a few of the original agents return and take over, planning to destroy the O.S.I. before being thwarted by Brock and Shore Leave. Hunter Gathers later destroys the S.P.H.I.N.X. pyramid while at the same time Sergeant Hatred destroys S.P.H.I.N.X. Headquarters, leaving Gary the only thing remaining of S.P.H.I.N.X.
In the From the Ladle to the Grave: The Shallow Gravy Story special Gary (21) is shown with his face blurred out wearing a S.P.H.I.N.X. outfit and using the name "Viceroy". He still believed that his friend was murdered. Later in the video The Monarch admits he killed 24.
Return to The Monarch
Gary later takes to camping on the grounds of the Venture Compound and would later help Sergeant Hatred, who had learned of Dr. Venture being captured by The Monarch after crashing a villain's party. The two infiltrate the Cocoon while there the two slowly see they possess some similarities and bond when Gary saves Hatred from being discovered by Monarch henchman. Gary is soon confronted by Tim-Tom and reveals he knows it was him and Kevin who were responsible for the death of his best friend Henchman 24. He then incites the other henchmen by revealing that Tim-Tom and Kevin were the ones who killed Henchman 24, which leads to the henchmen turning against the pupae twins. 21 later meets with Dr. Girlfriend and The Monarch, and returns to work for them just as Sergeant Hatred destroys the Cocoon which while falling destroys part of the Monarch's Malice mansion. Gary along with the Monarch and Dr. Girlfriend survive the explosion with Gary remarking "that sucked". Now the sole remaining henchman of The Monarch, Gary along with the couple move into The Monarch's old family home. While there Dr. Girlfriend goes to her first meeting as a member of The Council of 13 while Gary and the Monarch try to find food which they soon do. Gary is shocked when The Monarch spots a knife that Phantom Limb would have the same taste for deducing he was living there. Gary tries to convince The Monarch to leave the house just in case Phantom Limb returns but the Monarch finds the plans for the Gargantua space station, stating Phantom Limb had went there and he plans to capture him for a rank in the council.
Gary joins The Monarch in trying to reach the station and the pair stop by the Venture Compound, where they steal a rocket ship and travel to space just as the compound goes up in flames courtesy of The Monarch using gasoline to burn it down. As they travel through space, the two pass the time by playing a guessing game which is soon ended when a escape pod carrying Dr. Girlfriend along with Watch and Ward crash into them and transport them to Meteor Majeure. Once aboard the station, they watch as Dr. Henry Killinger kills the last of The Investors and welcomes them. The assembled group are soon joined by Phantom Limb and Radical Left as Killinger announces his plans of rebuilding the Council of 13 with everyone present as members (except for Watch, Ward, The Monarch, and 21).
The New Kano
In Season 6, Gary and The Monarch are shown spending most of their time fixing up The Monarch's old house as well as trying to figure out a way to arch Dr. Venture without breaking Guild law. But upon learning from Dr. Mrs. The Monarch that other villains are ahead of them in trying to arch Dr. Venture due to him now being very important because of his new status. Soon after Gary and the Monarch set out to make sure other villains don't try to get a chance at arching Venture. Upon returning to the house, they are informed by Manolo (one of the construction workers for the house) that he has found something they would want to see. The sight turns out to be a secret hidden lair beneath the house which greatly shocked Gary and The Monarch. In the next episode, Gary tells The Monarch that the base belongs to the super-hero The Blue Morpho who turns out to be The Monarch's father, which puts the latter in disbelief. Gary then implores The Monarch to attend a villain's party hosted by Wide Wale (as a way of finding out who is in line to arch Dr. Venture) while he tries to get the Blue Morpho's car running again. At the end, he calls The Monarch to inform him that Manolo got the car working again and The Monarch tells him to pick him up after his wife leaves him at the party following an argument.
During the episode Rapacity in Blue, Gary shows The Monarch a video of his father turning to the life of a villain. This shocks The Monarch, who decides to go through with Gary's plan of using the costumes of his father and Kano to get rid of competing villains. They use the Blue Morpho's car and head for VenTech Tower where Gary accidentally kills the attacking villain Haranguetan. The two then escape the building on a city bus due to their car being impounded. Upon returning they are mistaken by Dr. Mrs. The Monarch for having spent most of the night hanging out together, which they nervously confirm. Also, despite accepting 24's death the voice of the latter still communicates with him.
In It Happening One Night, when they are told of the recent villains arching Dr. Venture, The Monarch continues on with his plan. To get 21 to cooperate he decides to destroy The Doom Factory Headquarters instead of directly killing the Level 10 villain Wes Warhammer. The two then use the Morpho scooters and invade the base where they plant explosives but The Monarch activates them too early, leading to them running out the hatch. However, The Monarch's coat gets caught and snares him, preventing his exit. The bombs don't go off as planned, seemingly being duds, but the base suddenly flies away with The Monarch, causing 21 to watch and scream out for the latter.
During A Party for Tarzan because The Monarch was given a new scientist to arch 21 is forced to dress like Kano and take out The Wandering Spider, the latest villain arching Dr. Venture. After finding him at a bar, he tricks him into helping fix the Morphomobile before he tranquilizes him and takes him out to the forest. He wakes the latter and makes him call Dr. Mrs. The Monarch to leave her a message about being held hostage and about to be killed by The Blue Morpho. After some hesitation, 21 presumably kills The Wandering Spider and sends the picture to The Monarch.
In Red Means Stop, 21 has become fed up with The Monarch having him kill the villains in line for arching Dr. Venture. This resulted in him kidnapping the remaining villains and locking them up in the restroom of the Morpho Cave. 21 then joins the Monarch in his attempt to get Red Death, the current villain to give up his arching rights to Venture by going to his home and having his wife and daughter go to his mother-in-law's home. The two then call Red Death and falsely tell him they kidnapped his family but their plan suffers a problem when Red Death threatens to kill them for harming his family. The two hide as Red Death invades and forces them to come out but the two truthfully tell him that his family is at his mother-in-law's home telling him to call to make sure. Once Red Death does and confirms his family's safety, he reveals that he knows The Blue Morpho is really the Monarch and asks him the reason for his action. 21 listens in closely and agrees with Red Death about letting the villains do their job only for the monarch to remind it him it was his idea. After the talk, he asks Red Death how is he so calm about all the killings he's done to which Red Death asks him the same due to the rumors he's heard. In response, 21 shows Red Death and The Monarch the cave bathroom, which is now filled with dead villain hostages and one crazed survivor: Maestro Wave. 21 is horrified that the villains killed each other, having provided them with food to keep them healthy. Red Death promises to keep their secret if they let him take care of Maestro Wave, whom he presumably kills. The Monarch punches 21 in the arm as 21 apologizes for the mess but The Monarch is more upset that he didn't tell him the cave had a restroom.
A pop-culture geek, 21 was kidnapped from a school trip to Washington at the age of 15 and was forced to join "The Fluttering Horde". Despite this he has grown to genuinely like his life as a henchman. He was often seen associating with his fellow henchman and best friend 24 talking about random things. 21 was very devastated at his friend's death and soon went out on journey to better himself. In many ways he matured into a real man and became much more courageous inspiring the loyalty of his fellow henchmen.
He is defined by his loyalty to The Monarch even giving up his dream of becoming a Villain to serve his master. Though he was originally just a henchman his service to The Monarch has become more of a friendship. He takes great pride in his work and is willing to follow his leader into all kinds of insane schemes no matter how deranged.
At the start of Season 3, he has become more brave and efficient which allowed him to lead the other henchmen as well as earning him the respect from henchmen and enemies. The aftermath of losing 24 caaused him to have serious delusions. Any henchman who questioned the manner of 24's death risked his life in 21's presence.
During Season 4, however, 21 started to have serious doubts about how his life had ultimately turned out and ultimately left his Monarchs service.
In Season 5, he tries to adjust himself to the life of being a good guy only to fail a couple of times which makes him decide to go back to the monarch's services as it was the only thing he was good at.
In Season 6, he manages to persuade The Monarch into taking up his father's identity as the vigilante The Blue Morpho. While the two have fun at first, 21 begins to have doubts due to being forced to permanently eliminate the other villains, showing a sense of morality. After he accidentally kills Haranguetan 21 begins exhibiting the telltale signs of P.T.S.D. and attempts to cope by reading the book Blood on My Hands, Grief in My Heart.
Relationships With Other Characters
As the series progressed, 21 started to develop a degree of friendship with Hank. Often showing concern for the boy's well being he sometimes mentored him to have a better life than he himself has.
21 and 24 have been best friends since the start of the series. They often argue about trivial things, like whether or not Smurfs are mammals. In the episode The Family That Slays Together, Stays Together (Part II), 24 dies in an explosion. 21 begins carrying his skull around and talking to it. It is revealed in Pinstripes and Poltergeists that 24 is actually a ghost who haunts 21, and is, at least partially, responsible for turning 21 into the leader of the henchmen. However the presence of 24's ghost has also led to Gary constantly announcing "I'm crazy." In Operation P.R.O.M. he attempts to bury 24's skull so that his ghost will leave. 24's ghost eventually does leave which causes 21 to break down crying. Despite accepting the latter's death, Gary still feels someone had a role in his death and soon deduces the pupae twins were behind it. He avenges his best friend by inciting the other monarch henchmen to rebel against them during their reign over them. However, in Rapacity in Blue 24's voice still speaks to Gary meaning he still has some unresolved issues with his friend's death. In The Rorqual Affair, it is revealed that he also kept 24's glove and would sniff it before he did anything dangerous.
In seasons 1-3, both 21 and 24 were known as The Monarch's best men, much to his displeasure. Unbeknownst to The Monarch, 21 anonymously authored the tell-all biography The Flight of The Monarch, which inadvertently lead to The Monarch's temporary break up with Dr. Girlfriend.
After 24's death, for most of season 4, 21 served as The Monarch's right hand man, until he quits in Operation P.R.O.M. Despite 21 saying he quits, The Monarch still thinks 21 is loyal to him and believes 21 is on some kind of undercover mission in The Venture Compound. 21 later returns to work for The Monarch and becomes the sole henchman after The Cocoon, along with a majority of the henchman, are destroyed. It is also shown despite Gary closely working with The Monarch, the latter never knew his first name, asking who "Gary" was after The Cocoon's destruction. In season 6 after the destruction of The Cocoon and their moving into The Monarch's family mansion in New Jersey, The Monarch and 21 are shown to have become closer. There relationship has developed into a working friendship and the two enjoy working as a team. This is shown by them playing games together such as 20 Questions and Uno. It also seems that The Monarch has come to view 21 more as an equal rather than a subordinate, even apologizing to him after an angry outburst in Faking Miracles, a courtesy which in the past he has claimed that a villain should never give their henchmen. Though, The Monarch would never admit he relies on 21 to great degree and often messes up without 21 there to keep him on track.
In Tears of a Sea Cow it is revealed that Gary has a serious crush (bordering on infatuation) with The Monarch's wife. 24's ghost teases him about this until the episode Assisted Suicide when he finally reveals how he feels and they share a drunken kiss (on top of The Monarch's unconscious body) which is only interrupted by The Monarch's sudden awakening. However, in the episode Operation P.R.O.M. Gary emotionally snaps, confronts his boss, confesses he's "probably in love" with Dr. Girlfriend, and loudly admits that they made out on top of his unconscious body. Much to Gary's shock and anger, neither Dr. Girlfriend or The Monarch are fazed by this revelation, since apparently they are swingers who regularly have "drunken threesomes" with other supervillains. Despite later returning to work for The Monarch, the matter has never been raised again and (given how they both now regard him as a trusted friend) it is likely he simply got over his feelings and let the matter go.
The Pupae Twins
21 resented Tim-Tom and Kevin for their bossiness and was rightfully scared of the Pupae Twins, especially after the two nearly killed 24. After undergoing training, 21 has even earned their respect and started working closely with them and unknown to 21 it was they who crossed the names of people who he thought were responsible for 24's death. In The Devil's Grip, 21 reveals he knows it was them who were actually responsible for 24's death and overthrows them by inciting the other henchmen into a riot which led to the deaths of the Pupae Twins. In All This and Gargantua-2, he is somewhat nervous when Dr. Mrs. The Monarch mentions them, showing he does not want her aware of the true cause of their demise.
21 considered Brock his rival (which was one sided on his part). Brock, however, considered 21 to be nothing but a pest. When the two first met in Tag Sale - You're It!, 21 tried to fight Brock with a fake light saber and ended up running away in fear from the bodyguard, who simply said "Boo". Throughout the show's first three seasons, whenever they would meet, 21 would always cower in fear of Brock and would anticipate the deaths of his fellow henchmen, calling it "Death by Samson". In season four, after going under intense training, 21 confronts Brock once again and Brock tries to scare him off once again. Only this time, 21 knocked him to the ground and the two entered a heated brawl. Even though 21 was able to hold his own, Brock was still victorious. After their fight, Brock complimented 21 on his newfound strength and aided him in taking down Monstroso. This act symbolized that Brock had come to respect 21 and the two, despite being enemies, could work together. 21 sees Brock as a pinnacle of what he could achieve and sometimes works with Brock to deal with problems such as Monstroso.
21 and Hatred developed a brief friendship when they attempted to infiltrate the Monarch's cocoon. However, Hatred quickly became convinced 21 was trying to betray him and ended up destroying the Cocoon with his hover tank. This hostility continued as in Hostile Makeover, Hatred hit Gary in the face with a gun claiming he had been waiting to do so for a week.
- The Rorqual Affair
- Arrears in Science
- The High Cost of Loathing
- The Bellicose Proxy
- The Unicorn in Captivity
- The Terminus Mandate
- The Forecast Manufacturer
- The Saphrax Protocol
- When Gary posts a recruitment advertisement for New S.P.H.I.N.X. on Guildslist in the Season 5 episode SPHINX Rising, he lists his email address as firstname.lastname@example.org.
- In the Season 5 episode Momma's Boys, Gary tells a police officer that he is Guild of Calamitous Intent member 283-21-MH, which permits him (as The Viceroy) and Hank Venture (as Enrico Matassa) to be committed to Dunwitch Asylum for the Criminally Obsessive.
- This is presumably his license as a Henchman of The Monarch (with 21 as his original rank and MH likely standing for Monarch Henchman.)