"This is not gonna destroy all other rock operas," Jack Black told the audience Tuesday night at Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas, while hyping up the crowd (which included SYFY WIRE) for the new Tenacious D cartoon, Post-Apocalypto, an animated adventure featuring Black and bandmate Kyle Gass.
"People can still remember The Who's Tommy, Pink Floyd's The Wall, but our goal was to make it a triumvirate, and all the rest of 'em can f**kin' disappear. We just wanted to be a part of [that]," said Black.
"It's not really an opera," Gass interjected. "There's talking."
To call Post-Apocalypto animated would also be a bit of a stretch, as it's more a slideshow of drawings, all done by Black himself, while he and Gass provide the voices for every character. Still, fans of the show will likely be charmed by the pair's finely-tuned Vaudeville-meets-rockstar schtick, while paying homage to everything from The Terminator to Heavy Metal along the way.
"It was really just a reaction to the times," Black told the crowd after the screening. "Then we were like 'We gotta go post-apocalyptic.' And we realized all the best movies are post-apocalyptic. You got Terminator, Road Warrior, Matrix. Those are the three best movies. That's objectively true."
As the title indicates, the series starts off with the end of the world, then finds our heroes traversing dangerous cults, blistering deserts, and even outer space as they try to save humanity.
"We knew we wanted to jump the shark and nuke the fridge early," said Gass.
"That's what franchises do in desperation," added Black. "We felt like we were at that stage, maybe, and [should] really just embrace it. Then you can start anew, with a brand new palate, a new world, new possibilities."
Black also revealed that Post-Apocalypto is, essentially, their follow-up to their 2006 live-action feature Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny.
"This basically was Pick of Destiny II," said Black. "I mean, there's not gonna be a Pick of Destiny II. There's no Raiders of the Lost Ark II, it's just what's-his-name in another adventure. The whole plan is we [will] do more, but it won't be Post-Apocalypto II. It'll be Tenacious D in something else."
The series is broken up into a half-dozen 10-minute episodes that will premiere on YouTube Sept. 28, with a new chapter released once a week, "like a real TV show," according to Black. In the meantime, be sure to check out all of SYFY WIRE's Fantastic Fest coverage.