"P.R. Pickles" (also known as "P.R. Klok") is the eighth episode of the second season of Metalocalypse, twenty-eighth overall. It aired on May 25, 2008 on Adult Swim.
Pickles gets a new P.R. woman to help him. She turns out to be the leader of a cult who uses Pickles' Dethklok fame to attract members. The rest of the band attempts to increase their public image as successfully as Pickles but they fail.
The episode opens with a TV show called Cashtastrophe with Pickles is starring as a "celebrity helper pal" to the contestant. If Pickles can answer the question correctly, the contestant will win one million dollars, but he gets it wrong the man will die by cash. Pickles is visibly drunk and wearing a shirt with an upside-down Ankh; a symbol he's never worn before. The question asked is "What Celesital Body is no longer considered a planet?". Dethklok watch their bandmate struggle with the question and shout out answers at the television. Skiwsgaar thinks it's the sun, Murderface says it could be anything. Toki is worried about Pickles, but Liz Bane comments that this is excellent exposure, prompting Nathan to ask who the hell is she. Toki whispers that she's Pickles' P.R. manager and not a groupie and Nathan promptly loses interest. After a lot of thought, Pickles decides that his answer is the Earth is no longer considered a planet, which is incorrect and the contestant gets killed in a tube full of cash. Liz comments on how this is great exposure again.
Bane of Liz
Senator Stampinton introduces Liz Bane to the Tribunal. Her various aliases are "Liz Blackfin" and "Liz Deatheye" and she used to be a religious radical in the 70's. She's credited with starting dozens of cults, her biggest one being the Order of the Dybbuks, a cult that believed that they would achieve immortality by taking over the bodies of French people. In 1973, 28 Dybbuks murdered a hundred French citizens but somehow Bane was cleared of all charges. Years later she started a public relations firm called Exodus. The Tribunal suspects Exodus is doing more than P.R. work.
Back at Mordhaus, Nathan complains that they each want their own P.R. person like Pickles has and Charles explains that he already is their P.R. manager. Dethklok keeps insisting that they want a "real" P.R. person while Charles argues that he is one until Toki says that they want a lady one, something Charles isn't. Pickles attends the movie premiere of Rise of the Tyrant and gets interviewed about being the current most visible member of Dethklok and thus a fan favourite. Pickles says it makes him feel "drunk and horny". Dethklok is watching the interview and Murderface grouses that Pickles is having fun. Charles comments that 'they say there's no such thing as bad publicity' but he happens to think 'you can do yourself a disservice'. Cut to Pickles hosting an movie award show and drunkenly calling his own name as the winner and vodka and beer as the director. He then stumbles as he passes out in a drunken haze and accidentally rips the dress off the hostess.
Dethklok begins discussing starting their own P.R. while Toki plays videogames. Nathan says "the three of us" and Toki realizes that he's being excluded and starts an argument. Meanwhile, Pickles is at yet another TV show, this time "A Chat with Paul and Paula" even drunker than before and his slurred words are barely understandable as he answers questions about why Dethklok is so intensely private and what he does to relax. After the show Pickles rides a limo with Liz and asks her if she's angry for slurring his words and having a drink before the show but Liz says that he did fine and that this is his time.
Dethklok (minus Pickles and Toki) has a meeting about publicity and being seen. Murderface attempts to lead the meeting, thought he's constantly interrupted by Nathan and Skwisgaar agreeing with him. William says that Pickles is already dominating TV so they need to be in another medium. Toki (who is revealed to have been sitting at the same table) suggests radio, but he's shot down because he's not part of the P.R. Club. Frustrated, Murderface breaks the laptop.
On the Dethklok Minute, the host talks about how Pickles is now the most in-demand celebrity alive and Exodus has become the world largest P.R. firm thanks to his success. Dethklok attempts to build their image by attending a Juice Joint store opening, but they don't tell the press they're going. Toki tags along, wanting a smoothie of carrots and kale. When a Dethklok fan recognizes Nathan, Murderface denies that they're famous because he says he doesn't want the press to come. Skwisgaar shouts that he has an idea: to promote where no one else has promoted before, taking credit for what was agreed in the meeting. Dethklok then spends 17 million dollars on huge stone slabs with their names being dropped to the bottom of the ocean, in the poles and outer space, where nobody can see them. Charles tells them it's not the best use of their money and thinks they should stop, though he says "good work guys" as he leaves. Dethklok wonders what they're doing wrong and Toki pulls out a cooking magazine with Pickles on the cover that says "Cook me". Pickles walks into the room and Dethklok treats him like a celebrity, forgetting that they already know him and that they're celebrities themselves. Pickles asks them to do a gig as a favour for his publicist and they agree.
A cult leader
Back at Exodus offices, Pickles gives Liz a gift, one of those calendars with photos of grey dogs in human clothes. Liz thinks it's a nice gift even though she has no use for Earth calendars and she shows her appreciation for Pickles by giving him a Hot Topic Card and remarking he was a great find. As Pickles is leaving, Liz repeats that they will see each other at the show, making the drummer nonplussed. After he leaves she opens a computer file that has her secret plan: "1. Make Pickles the Drummer the most popular celebrity alive. 2. Use Pickles' influence to acquire millions of followers. 3. Take their money, all of it. 4. Torture them and brainwash them. 5. Plan Dethklok event around "Nile's Comet" collision. 6. Followers drink poison grapedrink. 7. Kill Dethklok."
Dethklok arrives for their gig, unaware of the comet or the cult and complain that they didn't get any grape drink. Liz scolds Pickles about being late and seems really anxious about the schedule. Pickles asks Nathan to sing a song about destiny, Nathan answers that they don't have any but he'll stick the word in and nobody will notice because nobody can understand him anyway.
The band begins their song and they rise in a platform along with select members of Liz's cult. While the song plays Liz changes out of her cult outfit and leaves the building, expecting both her followers and Dethklok to die. As she speeds away, her followers begin to hemorrhage and die from the poison they drank and vomit from the oxygen deprivation as the rising platform reaches the stratosphere. The Nile Comet collides with the gigantic stone placard Dethklok out in space and it's thrown off course, completely missing the platform. The comet becomes a meteorite as it enters the Earth's atmosphere and breaks into several pieces, destroying the remaining Dethklok stone slabs, destroying Liz's car while she's in it, killing the fan that recognized Nathan and destroying the studio of Dethklok Minute, badly injuring the Dethklok Minute Host, burning off his skin and making him lose a hand.
Songs featured in this episode
- Comet Song
- Devin Townsend
- Liz Bane's trademark closely resembles an upside-down Ankh.
- P.R. is an abbreviation for public relations.
- The answer to the game show question is Pluto, which too small to be considered a planet and has been reclassified as a dwarf planet.
- This episode reveals that Charles is Dethklok's official P.R. manager as well as the Chief Financial Officer and band manager.
- The movie title Rise of the Tyrant is a reference to an album of the same name by the band Arch Enemy.
- Dethklok's tendency to exclude Toki causes him to form his own Special Persons Invites Club in season four's episode Diversityklok.
- Pickles says that he eats samosas while relaxing.
- The grey dog in the calendar Pickles gave to Liz is modeled after Ernie, Brendon Small's dog.
- Salacia is seen whispering at the moment the comet collides with the Dethklok PR monolith, possibly suggesting that he used his dark influence to protect Dethklok.
- The way Liz runs her cult has several references to Peoples Temple Agricultural Project, most well known as the Jonestown Massacre, which is famous for the mass suicide/murder that involved several people drinking poisoned Flavor Aid.
- The name of the comet comes from the Technical death metal band Nile.