What's New, Beelzebub?

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Sam & Max: What's New, Beelzebub?
The GameTap title card for "What's New, Beelzebub?"
The GameTap title card for "What's New, Beelzebub?"
Developer(s) Telltale Games
Publisher(s) Telltale Games
GameTap
Designer(s) Chuck Jordan
Brendan Q. Ferguson
Dave Grossman
Heather Logas
Steve Purcell
Series Sam & Max: Season Two
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Wii, Xbox 360 (XBLA)[1][2]
Release date(s)
  • NA April 11, 2008
Genre(s) Adventure
Mode(s) Single-player
Distribution Download

"What's New, Beelzebub?" is the season finale of Sam & Max Season Two created by Telltale Games and published by GameTap. It was released on April 11, 2008.

Short plot synopsis[edit]

After the events of the previous episode (Chariots of the Dogs) Sam and Max have to go to Hell to save Bosco's soul from Satan.

Plot[edit]

The Hell reception.

Bosco died in Chariots of the Dogs and Sam & Max and his body chase after his soul. They end up at the river Styx and the entrance to hell, which surprisingly is right below the street in which they live. They meet with Harry Moleman, who now has taken over the role of Death and requests a token for them to be able to enter the "Soul Train" and thus go to hell to find Bosco's soul. They meet with Momma Bosco's ghost on the street and using a freshly reactivated Maimtron 9000 robot (a "gift" from Santa in Ice Station Santa, sent to kill them) they get her token and use it to enter Hell.

In Hell, which looks surprisingly like an office building, they meet all the fallen former enemies of previous adventures - Jurgen is the receptionist (who does not want to let them talk to Satan because they killed him), Hugh Bliss is the censor, who *bleep*s all the naughty words (taking, as Max notes, all the fun out of TV), the Shambling Corporate Presence is playing games while it should be working and Brady Culture is the new guy, who is happy to work there. They find out that Bosco is most likely in a personal hell in the back (and that Brady Culture is dead, which they hadn't known or caused). Unfortunately, Satan is too busy to talk to them, so they decide to bring down and break Hell's efficiency to cause him to talk to them.

In the back, they find a room dedicated to themselves. Apparently, Sam & Max sent so many people, namely their foes, to Hell that they are considered major contributors, in whose honor, statues have been erected. Also in that room, they find dioramas of personal hells, where their latest "victims" are kept - Bosco, Santa, one of his elves, Grandpa Stinky and, surprisingly, the DeSoto, whose death they weren't aware of. They set out to free them, crashing the DeSoto into Bosco's personal hell and connecting Santa's diorama with the one of the elf as well as getting Hugh Bliss to cancel a cooking show, Stinky's personal hell. With the souls freed, they get Satan's attention - but the souls still belong to him. He offers to release them when Sam signs a contract.

Unfortunately, being the fast-forward detective he is, Sam doesn't read it. The souls are redeemed, but he traded his own for them and is stuck in his own personal hell - to have Peepers as a partner forever! Realizing he is in a diorama as well, he gets Max to enter it and trash the demon who posed as Peepers. This allows him to escape and confront Satan. Satan is displeased and fears management will have his head for this. They wonder who could be Satan's boss - and find it to be none other than the Soda Poppers themselves. They were behind all cases from the beginning and killed Brady Culture, leading them to commit more vile deeds. (like reality TV, running for governor, a civil war).

Sam & Max return to their street to stop the Poppers from their three tasks to take over the world - seduce Sybil (who is about to marry Abe Lincoln's head) to conceive a child, win the soul of a computer and get mankind to repeat the original sin by selling a special kind of apple juice to Stinky. They manage to thwart all of their plans and Satan is able to try a hostile re-takeover of Hell.

As retaliation to deal with Sam & Max, the Poppers cast them into the pits of Hell using the bell, the book and the candle. There, they are without escape, but in Ice Station Santa, they saved themselves from this already, and so they return on Santa's sleigh, covering Hell in snow - what they literally say "freezing Hell over". The Commissioner calls (and Sam lets Max answer the phone for the first time ever) to tell them that Sybil wants Max to perform her wedding (and that he won the Nobel Peace Prize). By turning their ritual against the trio with the bell, the book and the candle, Sam & Max banish the Poppers themselves to the pits of Hell, the same pits, thus restoring the balance of Hell, and then get to Sybil's wedding in front of the White House. In the end, the Poppers are shown in the pits, exclaiming they will return before the Bermuda Triangle from Moai Better Blues opens up above them and spills lava on them, therefore finishing the hyperactive trio once and for all.

Allusions[edit]

  • Title of this episode spoofs the 1965 movie What's New Pussycat?.
  • The freeze frame at the point before Sam & Max drive the De Soto from the street diorama into the theater diorama is a reference to The Dukes of Hazzard.
  • In the cooking show diorama, the demonic version of Stinky always says "Damn!" when she adds a new ingredient to her recipe, similar to how Emeril Lagasse always says "Bam!" when he does the same thing.
  • As Sam reads the "baby book" out loud to Grandpa Stinky, Max declares "It's a cookbook!" This is a reference to To Serve Man.
  • The pile of MimeSweeper cartridges buried at shores of the Styx river is a reference to the infamous ET video game burial.
  • Looking at the one-armed bandit in the elf's factory, Sam declares "His arm's off. 'Tis but a Flesh Wound!", referring to Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
  • The List of Seven words on the wall of Hugh Bliss' cubicle are a reference to George Carlin's "The Seven Words you can't say on Television".
  • The final bell, book and candle ritual used to open a portal to hell is a reference to an archaic method of excommunication, which in turn is referenced prominently in Zork.
  • When Sam & Max finally gets to speak to Satan, he introduces himself by saying "Pleased to meet you. I hope you guessed my name", a reference to the Rolling Stones song Sympathy for the Devil.
  • When the spaceship is destroyed at the beginning of the game, Sam & Max listen to the AI on board the spaceship say, "Spaceship destroyed, but I still have the greatest enthusiasm and confidence in the mission." This is a reference to what HAL 9000 says in 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • When Sam speaks in the karaoke machine in the sewers, he says "They call me...Mr. Tibbs". This is a reference to the famous line from In the Heat of the Night.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]