Arby 'n' the Chief
From Halopedia, the Halo wiki
Arby 'n' the Chief is a Live-Action Machinima Hybrid series created by Jon Graham, credited as Jon CJG, about the lives of figurine versions of the Master Chief and the Arbiter. It is mainly based around the two playing Halo: Reach and Halo 3, and doing things related to Halo, but also will occasionally focus on the duo pulling off various shenanigans. In the first four seasons, episodes usually revolve around the duo . By the fifth season, there is a central plot that develops throughout the season, while episodes that address current events are more rare. By the sixth and seventh seasons, each episode is devoted to detailing the plot.
Arby 'n' the Chief is a live action internet video series created by Jon Graham, also known as Jon CJG (who was in turn known as DigitalPh33r when the series began production), about the lives of figurine versions of Master Chief and the Arbiter. Originally, it was about the two playing video games and encountering common phenomenons such as hackers or DLC releases in the Xbox LIVE community, but by the fifth season, each season has its own plot. The series has seven complete seasons.
Usually, the duo plays Halo 3, or Halo: Reach as of Season 4, on Xbox LIVE although Arbiter also enjoys playing other games such as Grand Theft Auto IV, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time on Wii. Chief is typically seen expressing scorn and dissent whenever someone chooses to play any game that is not Halo related, and as such, Chief stays away from such games. However, he does venture out of his normal way to try those games, though his performance is terrible, and what time he does devote to the playing of different games always results in an increase in Chief's hatred for that game. Later on in the series, however, Chief becomes more tolerant of non-Halo games, such as Resident Evil 5, despite later on joining a protest against the game itself because of its alleged racism.
Master Chief Sucks at Halo
In this prequel to the later series, Jon's Halo 2 Master Chief action figure comes to life, and begins playing the Halo 3 Beta. He plays extremely poorly, partially because of his unfamiliarity with the new features of Halo 3, but mainly because of his total lack of video gaming talent (at one point, he picks up a spike grenade and throws it at a nearby wall, killing himself and blaming Bungie for making a "gay wep0n"; in another scene, he accuses another player of hacking due to the player's use of a bubble shield).
In the second episode, we find him asking the Arbiter (apparently a different Arbiter action figure than the one who would later be featured in Arby 'n' the Chief; like the Chief, this Arbiter is unintelligent and uses Leet Speak) to play Halo 3 Beta with him on MSN. However, the Beta has been concluded, prompting the Chief to try and drown himself in the toilet. When the suicide attempt fails (because he is wearing a helmet), he decides to play Halo 2 on Xbox Live. He quickly gets booted for offensive behavior, which includes betraying teammates for power weapons such as the Energy Sword. Afterward, he decides to check out Bungie.net for updates on Halo 3, and discovers that the game's release date has been announced for Tuesday, September 25th, 2007.
In the final episode, we find him under the Halo 3 Legendary Edition Helmet. He comments on how a man on the internet lied to him by telling him that "wearing this helmet does not make you pleh better". He proceeds to play Halo 3, and after a bad display of gameplay, he takes a Sniper Rifle and gets a lucky headshot while jumping. He thinks he has become the best Halo 3 player in the history of the world, and decides to make a Halo 3 montage. After seven weeks, and with assistance from the Arbiter, he finally completes his "masterpiece," which consists of a misspelled title; the film clip was filmed unskillfully, with the shooting technique of merely pointing a digital camera at the TV screen. To top it all off, the film comes with an annoyingly loud soundtrack ("Crawling" by Linkin Park).
Endgame is the originally intended finale for Arby 'n' the Chief before the debut of the sequel series Arby 'n' the Chief: In LA. It is split into six parts.
Jon revealed via his blog that he will be producing a fourth season of Arby 'n' the Chief. This is not a continuation of Arby ‘n’ the Chief in LA, but of the original series, taking place after the events of “King” but before those of Endgame; unlike Arby 'n' the Chief in LA, Jon is creating these episodes entirely on his own, with no outside involvement from Machinima.com. Jon has described the new season as having, “No melodrama, no crazy plots, no new characters, just classic Arby 'n' the Chief, back-and-forth banter and wacky around-the-house antics.” The first two episodes, which were premiered at CanWest 2010, center around the Halo: Reach Beta, while the rest of the episodes will be based around other popular Xbox 360 games or other plots that do not relate to video games. A trailer is available on YouTube, and the first episode is scheduled to be released on Saturday, June 26, 2010.
The seventh season of Arby 'n' the Chief premiered on April 7, 2012. The episodes were originally scheduled to be released every three weeks, although this goal was often left unmet. The average run time for each episode is intended to be ten to fifteen minutes, but some episodes have had a run time of around twenty-thirty minutes.
This season is much darker in tone than the previous ones; death and despair are prominent themes, and relationships between the main characters are more strained than ever before. The soundtrack is minimal, incorporating elements of noise, ambient music and dubstep; scenes with little dialogue are frequent. Title cards are discreet, and credits usually roll silently.
In late 2012, the season was put on a hiatus, as Jon stated to be overwhelmed from both school work and work on the show. The season has been suggested several times to be the last one of the series, for example in the director's commentary for "Terminal", Jon pondered the idea of ending the show on its seventh season as a nod to Bungie's favorite number, which is also seven. On March 2, 2013, a new trailer detailing season seven's second half was released, with the announcement confirming that it will be indeed be the last one in the main continuity of the series. Episodes resumed on March 30, 2013 and have since been uploaded weekly until the series finale.
The eighth season of Arby 'n' the Chief premiered on November 5, 2015. This season wasn't premiered on Machinima but Jon's YouTube channel instead and it's an independent job for a story Jon conceived.
A new segment to season six is a show known as "Hypermail," (formerly known as "Hypernews" from season five.) A fanmail show that will rotate weekly between season 6 and it until the season's end. The segment is non-canon and displays the characters in their usual attitude, as well as addresses more real-life and/or pop culture events from the perspective of The Arbiter iand Master Chief, thereby breaking the 4th wall in the series.
Behind the Scenes
In these two videos, Jon Graham tells and shows viewers the process of creating an episode of Arby 'n' The Chief.
Arby 'n' the Chief in L.A.
On November 2, 2009 it was announced that a sequel to the series is in production. The sequel's title is "Arby n the Chief in L.A." Jon Graham stated on his blog that he is not working on the project, and that Machinima.com has taken complete control of the series. However, Machinima.com is still going to go to Jon for him to provide tips and information to help with series continuity.
Because of bad fan reception for the first two episodes, on November 24, 2009, much to his dismay, Jon Graham stated on his blog that he was asked by Machinima to fly to L.A. and help them with the third episode to "give the new crew a running start." However, he was detained by US Homeland Security as a Canadian citizen and was denied entrance to the United States; the new arrangement is for Jon to simply write the scripts and manage the voices, while a film crew in LA does all the actual production. Jon stated on his blog that he still doesn't consider the series his anymore.
It is unknown whether the series will continue, due to it's unpopularity compared to the series made by Jon Graham.
Arby 'n' the Chief: The Movie
On May 25th, 2008, Arby 'n' the Chief: The Movie premiered at the machinima event CanWest ‘08 (which the movie was created for) and was published on YouTube the same day. The movie seems to take place in between the plot line of Episodes 10 and 11, and features all of the main characters of the series up to that point (thus, not only are the Master Chief and the Arbiter present, but so are Cortana, Todd, and Travis). The movie also marks the first time that any character has ventured out of Jon's apartment.
Jon Graham is famous for being a solo machinima producer, but for the Movie, his friend Daniel Lazslo, aka D Laz, assisted him in the production of the film, most notably with visual effects.
The Movie was the first Master Chief Sucks at Halo/Arby 'n' the Chief production to go outside of Jon Graham's apartment. Filming took place in three different cities: Vancouver (Jon Graham's old residence), Chilliwack (another Canadian City), and Los Angeles (where Jon Graham visited to work at the Machinima.com headquarters for several days).
In the beginning of the movie, the Master Chief forces the Arbiter, Cortana, Todd, and Travis to play along with a horrible game of "pretend" with Chief (one of Todd's lines is nothing but a crude drawing of a penis). As the others leave, the Arbiter approaches the Chief and consoles him by telling him it was very "Imaginative". While watching machinima videos online, the Chief begins to insult Jon Graham (also known as DigitalPh33r at the time), saying that his videos are shitty and repetitive. The Arbiter tells him to make a machinima of his own, but on one condition: If the machinima is bad, the Chief has to be nice for a day. The Chief retorts by saying that if the machinima is good, then the Arbiter, Todd, Travis, and Cortana have to "shut up" for a day. Several weeks later, with the help of the Chief's online friends, his machinima is complete. It is very badly done, is over three hours long, and contains bad voice acting, over-the-top character actions, and a terrible plot. Everyone hates it, though the Arbiter and Todd attempt to sugar-coat their criticism. Angry, the Chief says that he has uploaded it to the internet and that the result of the bet should depend on the online reaction (which is Chief standing at the computer for a day and continually hitting F5 in order to refresh the page over and over, resulting in more views).
The Chief's video attracts the attention of the eccentric machinima director Skyler Loveheart, the head of "Douchebag Studios." Loveheart mistakenly thinks that the movie was made as a parody of bad machinima, and believes that the video is a work of genius. He contacts the Chief and tells him that Douchebag Studios could use the Chief's talents, and that they want him to come down to Los Angeles to create a serious machinima under their new contract. The Chief happily accepts and tells the Arbiter and Todd that he "doesn't have to live with [those] douchebags anymore." To everyone's delight except the Arbiter’s, the Chief leaves and heads to LA.
In Los Angeles, the Chief is greeted by Loveheart. The Chief asks to use Loveheart's phone, which he uses to call the Arbiter. He begins to brag to and insult the Arbiter, who angrily throws the phone out the window. The Chief then makes an online video (which parodies Uwe Boll’s infamous Youtube video containing much of the same content), in which he boasts about his machinima talents and challenges anyone who disagrees to a boxing match; according to him, beating his critics in a boxing match will somehow prove that he is right and they are wrong. The video annoys the Arbiter, who "can't think of anyone with an ego that massive." Travis tells the Arbiter to let it go, and that they should be celebrating. The Arbiter half-heartedly agrees.
Nearly two months later, the Chief's attempt at a "serious" machinima is complete, titled "TEH EPIK BATEL." Loveheart, seeing the video and how bad it is, realizes that the Chief isn't cleverly satirizing bad machinima, but is simply bad himself. Loveheart furiously tells the Chief that he had invested a lot of money in him, and, pulling a pistol from his pocket, attempts to shoot him. Luckily, Loveheart's hyperactivity causes him to aim erratically, and so every shot misses, even hitting himself in the knee with one of the shots. The Chief steals Loveheart's car and escapes, heading back home. Loveheart shoots himself in the head, causing a ludicrous amount of blood to spurt out.
Back at Jon's apartment, Travis and the Arbiter are playing Halo 3. Losing, the Arbiter forfeits, saying that he's not in the mood. The Chief arrives, and is greeted coldly by the Arbiter, whom the Chief mostly ignores. He goes on to enthusiastically greet Todd, Travis, and Cortana, who don't reply. The Arbiter tells him that he has quite a lot of nerve coming back after the way he behaved, and that he should go. The Chief, upset, cuts power to the apartment and leaves. He walks into the road and attempts to commit suicide by throwing himself in front of a car. The Arbiter, who followed, begs the Chief to get up, saying that he needs him in his life and that he even loves him. After a few more moments in which the Chief does not respond, he turns away. Suddenly, the Chief gets up, saying, "TAHTS SRSLY TEH GAYIST SHIT IV EVAR HERD." He recalls when he tried to commit suicide in Master Chief Sucks At Halo 2, and comes to the conclusion that he can't die. He asks for a hug, which the Arbiter gives, not realizing the Chief has stuck another insulting sign on his back (“IM GAY”), just as he did in Episode 6.
Later, Todd, Travis, and Cortana are having a discussion on the Master Chief's destiny (namely, whether he'd go to Heaven or Hell; the unanimous conclusion is that he is going to Hell). Just then, a large Master Chief helmet appears around the corner of the hallway, saying that it is the “real” Master Chief and declaring that “I AM HEER TO EAT UR FACE. OM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM.” This badly frightens everyone, especially Todd, who screams effeminately at the top of his lungs and runs away when he sees it. However it turns out to be a prank by the Chief, who recites his classic line, “llolollolllolloolollololloololol,” as the movie ends.