"Rehabklok" is the eighth episode of the third season of Metalocalypse, forty-seventh overall.
After Pickles' high-tech drum set goes haywire, he is spun out of control and, in turn, causes billions of dollars in damage to the surrounding area. When it is found that Pickles was drunk, he is sent to rehab. While he is there the band replaces him with a robot that later, after becoming sentient, threatens to murder everyone in the band. In the end, Pickles is able to rescue his bandmates and return to his lifestyle of excessive drinking.
In Zambezia, Mozambique, at the very beginning of a concert, Pickles is shown being debriefed by two scientists on a very advanced set of drums which the scientists call "hover-drums". The drums are seen to be floating as Pickles, confused and intoxicated, tries to figure out how to use them. However, before he is able to ask any real questions, the show begins and Pickles is sent out to play. During the first few seconds of the opening song, Pickles is fine, floating and playing successfully while in the air. The success is short-lived, however, as Pickles loses a drumstick that then gets lodged into a knobbed panel labeled "navigation" and Pickles and the hover-drums are sent spiraling out of control. Offdensen immediately sends out two Klokateers (no. 3522 and 7611) to retrieve Pickles. Both Klokateers end up dying, leaving Pickles to nearly crash into several planes that explode in the background as he screams in terror and crashes.
Out of control celebrity
The very next scene shows an injured Pickles sitting on one side of the Dethklok limo while the others face him. Offdensen then describes to him the extent of damage the incident caused and explains that the fact he had "100% alcohol" in his system made the situation worse. Nathan adds that in order to "avoid any problems" they made the decision to send him to rehab. Pickles is horrified.
In the conference room, the band and Offdensen meet to discuss the situation. Offdensen, just before starting the discussion, shows Pickles a video message of his brother, Seth, who tells him that he needs 5 million dollars while underhandedly insulting Pickles. Enraged, Pickles states that he "would rather kill himself" than give Seth 5 million dollars. Offdensen then cuts in to reel the topic back on rehab, reiterating the fact that the local authorities needed "a scapegoat". When Pickles tries to explain that "it was a technical malfunction", the rest of the band calls it "denial" and states that he can't "handle his booze". Offdensen then finalizes the decision by telling Pickles it's time for him "to pack his bags" and "start living sober".
Pickles does as Offdensen suggests, angrily singing the song "Gotta Get Clean"* as he packs his bags and drives off on a motorcycle. As the song calms down, Pickles is shown playing an acoustic guitar and lamenting the things alcohol gave him, saying that "this is the saddest day in the world". The scene then fades to Pickles standing in front of a rehabilitation center.
Automaton substituteMeanwhile, the band runs into a problem regarding Pickles being in rehab on the day of a show. Offdensen, already having a solution, introduces them to the drum machine, X2P1158. In order to operate the machine, the band has to watch an instructional video. During this video, Facebones warns them that the robot is "equipped with a 10,000 megaton self-detonation device" and "in rare occasions" can become sentient and cause harm to humans. The band doesn't seem to show much concern as they already decided that X2P1158 is a fantastic replacement for Pickles. Nathan asks if Pickles would care if they replaced him and is met with positivity, since, according to Murderface, Pickles is "probably living like a king".
Quite the opposite of his bandmates' thoughts, however, Pickles is taking to rehab terribly and is shown trying to escape several times only to be tasered and brought back by orderlies. As the song "Way to be Saved"* nears its end, Pickles's therapist threatens him with the thought of not being able to get back into Dethklok causing Pickles to finally reveal the reason behind his alcoholism: Seth. The drummer reveals that during his childhood his brother burned down the garage but he got blamed for it and he's been drinking his pain away ever since. The therapist then tells him that he "must forgive his brother" to which Pickles responds with a blatant "no way".
The scene cuts to Dethklok playing "Killstardo Abominate" with X2P1158 and Dethklok being completely amazed by the robot's skill. Offdensen arrives, cutting their excitement short, and reintroduces them with "the freshly sober and rehabilitated Pickles". Uncharacteristically, Pickles is shown to be extremely nice, calling Dethklok "friends", up until he notices X2P1158. The robot marks Pickles as a threat and Pickles doesn't hide his distaste either, especially as Nathan states that he's been replaced.
Pickles threatens X2P1158 while the rest of the band talks about how Pickles is different. Murderface states that Pickles "just isn't cool anymore" while Nathan, misunderstanding Pickles' longing gaze at their beer, believes that he is "judging" them. When Pickles tries to talk about the upcoming concert in Australia, Toki tells him that he should "just talks to Charles".
Burning down the garage
While speaking to Offdensen, Pickles is told that the reason he can't play is because he hasn't "completed the last of the 12 steps: forgiveness". In exasperation, Pickles tries to reason with Offdensen, but to no avail. Offdensen does suggest that Pickles go with them to Australia, forgive his brother and then play the show. The song "Danger"* begins to play and Pickles speculates that even if he is able to forgive his brother and play at the show, X2P1158 will not leave easily.
As Dethklok arrives in Australia, X2P1158 begins to show sentient qualities such as taking interest in groupies, taking drugs, wearing clothes (a vest),passing out with a needle in his wire and then throwing up neon green liquid afterwards.
Pickles and his brother are then shown talking in an Outback Steakhouse. Pickles asks Seth to accept his forgiveness of him to which Seth demands the 5 million dollars he requested before. Initially, Pickles is angered at this, but gives in as he realizes his brother won't accept his forgiveness until he gets his money.
When the band hears of Pickles' success in completing the 12-steps, they kick X2P1158 out of the band, thinking that the now sentient machine will be fine with the news. Pickles arriving back to an empty and destroyed room negates their beliefs. The robot shows up and states that if it "can't be in the band, no one will". Dethklok is shown to be tied together in a van surrounded by boxes of explosives that will detonate as X2P1158 does. Before Pickles can do anything, X2P1158 locks him inside of the room. However, there is a large quantity of alcohol to which Pickles binge drinks and gains enough strength and willpower to barrel his way through the door.
He hops onto the hover-drums flying extremely fast and is able to knock X2P1158 off of the van holding Dethklok. The robot does not give up and instead wraps its arms around Pickles' throat as the self-destruct clock ticks down by mere seconds. Just as its about to blow up, Pickles uses a bottle of alcohol to cause another malfunction and save himself by landing in a body of water. As the episode ends Dethklok is shown bonding with Pickles in the sauna, praising him for saving them and performing perfectly at the concert while being completely drunk. They don't seem to mind him throwing up all over the place.
Songs featured in this episode
- "Killstardo Abominate"
- Kirk Hammett
- The two scientists featured at the beginning of this episode can also be seen in season two's episode Dethvengeance and The Doomstar Requiem: A Klok Opera.
- Seth, Pickles' brother, is depicted to be "older" in this episode while in a previous episode, Dethwedding, is said to be "younger", adding on to the confusion of the characters' already mysterious ages.
- The rehab center is called Malevolent Creation, in tribute to the death metal band under the same name.
- The electronics store shown during the "self aware & famous" number is called '3 Inches of Saving' and is possibly a reference to Canadian metal band 3 Inches of Blood.
- As Pickles imagines possible surrogates for himself in the band, the 'nice eyed' drummer of Ladyklok (a Dethklok tribute band introduced in Tributeklok) can be seen in one sequence. However, it is not confirmed whether this has been a deliberate cameo.
- The above may also apply to an elderly woman participating in the choir of patients in "Way to be Saved", bearing resemblance to a visitor of the comedy club in Dethkomedy who reacted with vomiting to Nathan's performance as a ventriloquist.
- Some aspects of the drummer-robot X2P1158 may be seen as a homage to HAL 9000, a fictive sentient on-board computer who represents the antagonist in Stanley Kubrick's Sci-Fi milestone '2001: A Space Odyssey'. Particularly the reddish glowing single camera resp. the 'cyclops eye' at center of his 'head', the angle which allows looking through it and the rather emotional reaction to his sudden dismissal should be noted here.
- X2P1158 signs the cleavage of a fan in binary code with: 01101001, which can be translated to 'i' (text) or '105' (ASCII) or '69' (hexadecimal).
- The cover of the Dethalbum-standard edition can be seen as a poster when teenager Pickles pumps a beer in a scene of his confession flashback. This might be due to the fact that the background – a messy apartment – was recycled from Tributeklok without any alteration (note: even some dummies are identical.) As the handling of continuity is generally loose throughout the series and the shot did not appear to be of greater importance, it can be considered an accidental inconsistency in the timeline.
- The same applies to the room of the girl young Pickles offers a beer in his confession flashback, as it looks like a mirrored and slightly altered version of Juliette Sarmangsadandle's recording room in season one's Dethkids.