Spoilers abound. If you plan on reading this show eventually, you might want to take caution.
So. What is happening at the current point in the story? Why is Episode 85 the last episode? ..god, get.. get ready, 'cause this plot isn't gonna be pretty.
For the first three seasons, we have the main protagonists established. We meet the chao, the Dark chao, the Hero chao, the rare Neutral guys. We meet the Poker Gang-- Metal Sonic, Mecha Knuckles, and the Tails Doll. Indirectly, you meet me, the writer. I make a lot of pretty damn bad mistakes. I break the fourth wall sometimes. I introduce the concept of "the future is terrifying" and time travel and meeting the chao's future selves. Shade is the main Dark chao to focus on for now, though.
Then we meet an oddity. We meet The Beta Avengers, comprised of four malevolent figures: The MILKMAN, JOE, Echo, and Tagliare. These guys are from an abandoned arc from a beta version of the second season, and they come into the proper series wanting to avenge all these abandoned arcs and ideas. The MILKMAN foreshadows that the sixth season will be really fucking crazy.
For the fourth season, we are introduced to another key element of the story: Chao Talk. It's a city, a horribly eldritch city based off Turrican's secretcity maps in Sven Co-op. The chao get lost there for a season, dying a lot and wondering how the hell they can get back to their homes. They get home, the MILKMAN strikes, they fight back and hold him off. And then it turns out Echo's spying on them, ominously flying over their homes.
The fifth season's just the chao trying to live normal lives as they know the Beta Avengers have something huge planned, and they know the sixth season is right around that corner. And Echo's making them anxious. And then during the finale, Shade is kidnapped and crazy stuff. Their homes are bombed. The Beta Avengers pretty much wage war on the protagonists entirely, and the sixth season begins.
SHORTLY BEFORE THE SIXTH SEASON, there is a bonus feature-length script about the chao waking up in Chao Talk again and doing an eldritch ontological mystery. It introduces Dark's father, Wilson Constable Kilburn, who is a complete monstrosity and comprised of, like.. blood and spider parts and shit, and he foreshadows the recurring motif of bad relationships with fathers. They are able to leave, and Dark gets a letter from his father basically saying "You will come back to Chao Talk again, har har har cryptic eldritch shit"
The sixth season consists of Shade going on a very long adventure, collecting seven chaos drives as a bit of a Fridge Brilliance pun on chaos emeralds, gaining power, becoming a Dark/Swim chao, and then challenging each member of the Beta Avengers. He defeats Tagliare (going by the pseudonym "Rage Tail"), bests Echo, outsmarts JOE, and then challenges the MILKMAN one-on-one. The MILKMAN turns out to be Shade's father, introducing the motif of odd relationships with fathers in the show. JOE turns out to be a Dalek and then turns out to be a chao who died in the very first episode and then turns out to be Metal Speedy, another abandoned character from the betas. Shade fixes all the plot holes he can think of, the Beta Avengers shut up, and all is well.
Season Seven starts off with the chao having wacky adventures, playing with presidential elections, playing with Jim Crow laws, playing with 9/11, all in all revealing that they're bored as hell, that Shade misses having epic adventures. I foreshadow tons of stuff after the 9/11 episode, saying in an epilogue that "DCA can never be over as long as he is still alive," and things seem to go quiet.
And here's where it gets complicated.
Shade does Metal Gear Solid 2, does the Tanker bit. He's introduced to this mysterious Levity Nite character. He's seemingly killed, goes missing for two years. In those two years, his rival Chao takes over the Dark Garden, in essence becoming a Dark Chaos Chao, which Shade grows to loathe and envy, but that's later. In those two years, everyone is certain Shade is dead. It's basically just MGS2. And the rest of MGS2 happens two in-story years later, as a green Dark chao named Shadow who was just a random minor character in all the seasons up until now becomes the main protagonist. Yes, The Scrappy becomes the main protagonist.
Shadow does MGS2's Plant bit in its entirety. The Patriots are revealed to be this strange group calling themselves The Veteran's Committee, except they want to end DCA. Shadow knows he has to stop them. MGS2 ends, and.. even more stuff happens, god, I can't even fucking begin.
Shadow and Shade come out of it alive, basically, and return to the gardens and meet up with Dark and Red, two other main protagonists from the sixth season and stuff, and they're all summoned to the Space-Time Rip beyond the planet of pure Dooky (STR) which was introduced in Episode 12, where the Daleks introduced in season three tell them the Veteran's Committee are seriously trying to end the show and basically, Shadow has to collect seven chaos drives of his own to become a Dark/Run chao so he and Shade can work together and stop them because they are way more powerful and risky than the Beta Avengers ever were.
They are sent to the future, where they go through Half-Life 2 except Doctor Breen is Doctor Eggman who finally got sick of not being taken seriously so he grew a pair and took over the world, thus introducing the concept of growing the beard. We are introduced to a few more members of the Veteran's Committee: Levity Nite, and Echo (formerly a Beta Avenger). They have some scenes of malevolent ominous talking as the chao have some scenes of fun stuff I dunno. Eventually, in the climax, Shadow defeats Metal Sonic, because Metal Sonic has also been a recurring antagonist throughout and I forgot to mention, and Eggman reveals he will give up complete control of the world if it means he can become a member of the Veteran's Committee.
And then Echo, playing the part of the G-Man, saves the protagonists from the explosion at the end of the game, and proposes a proposition: "Work with us. You have no choice." He then tells them the location of another chaos drive and sends them off.
The protagonists go to an eerie highway and meet the slender man and stuff except they don't even properly comprehend what they're looking at, but this is super foreshadowing stuff. Levity Nite tells them the next chaos drive is in Bioshock, basically, so they go and start doing that underwater and stuff. And that's when it turns out they were never underwater in the first place; they're in Chao Talk. Dark freaks out because he remembers the letter and stuff, and they're all sad.
And then the Veteran's Committee pull them out and say "DCA's been around for five years, go celebrate or some shit, also there's a chaos drive in your home so go get it" and then it turns out they were lying and Shade's father is sick with a sickness that turns out to be him regressing and turning back into the MILKMAN but it's really complicated, and Cham becomes JOE again, and Echo becomes.. well, Echo again, and.. shit, BUT THEY DON'T KNOW THIS YET, it just looks like people disappearing and dying and shit to them. And then references to the earlier seasons. AND THEN they go back to Chao Talk and finish what they started, Shadow meets his father and his father's one of the Veteran's Committee, Shadow gets his chaos drive, they get the hell out of dodge.
The fourth chaos drive is in the eldritch forest of Sancheria, which the chao go to on Halloween. They spend a full night in a rather Metroid-esque disturbing landscape with all kinds of what the fuck, the slender man shows up but you have to be paying really fucking good attention to even know when he's there, there are giant spiders and chao with no faces and waking up from dreams to find out you were never asleep, subways full of horses, and we're introduced to the recurring motif of Ulysses. Ulysses is an allegory for me, the writer, for shit going on in my life. Bad shit.
Meanwhile, the Poker Gang goes through Nightmare House 2 to get the fifth chaos drive while the chao are working, to get the job done quicker and stuff, and that goes horribly and they get split up even more and then SPOILERS, the leader of the Veteran's Committee shows up to save 'em. The leader is Shadow's future self, yes, as I said, the future is a recurring motif in this. But the reader doesn't know this is Future Shadow; they think he's regular Shadow, it's not revealed until season eight. And basically, the Poker Gang lies and says they can't find the chaos drive, so the Veteran's Committee decides to let them go and stop working for them but secretly they have the drive and start looking for Shadow to help him.
And here, the chao have to go through a very surreal adventure through prog stories to find the city of New York and.. and.. stop this Butterfly Collector guy who's one of the Veteran's Committee and stop the Gatekeepers who are an allegory for social services, and.. there's parts where the Veterans actually talk to me, the Writing Writer as I'm called, and I reveal that I'm only writing DCA to escape from my life, and the Veterans say "Believer, you'll leave [them] in leaving them all" and.. basically, they want me to stop writing DCA so I can move on with my life. But I want to write an ending, at the very least. So I write on. And I tell the protagonists this and they agree to, at least, help me with the ending if it means they can have peace in their lives as well with no more Veteran's Committee.
And that's when the Beta Avengers show up!
Sigh. Season Eight.
So Shadow is attacked by Echo and all his chaos drives are stolen. AND THEN the hiatus happens. I write Fear Mythos stuff, I put DCA on hold from May 2011 until, like, March of 2012. And as we've already established, DCA has no fourth wall. By the time I get back to writing, the chao have almost lost all hope and don't even fucking care about shit, they just want to end the show so when I forget about DCA, they can be left in a happy state. The Veteran's Committee then comes clean, Future Shadow reveals himself, and they say "This is what we have been trying to say from the beginning. Will you help us end the show?" And the protagonists agree.
They have a conversation with me which results in me spilling the last of the Ulysses story, and I tell them that basically, to end Dark Chao Adventures, they have to defeat the main source of conflict, the characters that have been causing trouble for the duration of pretty much the whole show. They have to defeat the Beta Avengers for once and for all. So they agree to it and go face the Beta Avengers one-on-one.
But something's changed. The Beta Avengers are tired of being rather shitty characters, as.. they kinda were; I was much younger when I made them. They demand respect, so they grow they beard just as Eggman did, just as this entire show did. Tagliare becomes a chao hybrid of betas and The Archangel, Echo stays Echo because I actually did develop his character well, JOE becomes a hybrid of betas and The Wooden Girl except.. male, and the MILKMAN stays what he has always been: The predecessor to The Beast. He is a creature no character can fully grasp the appearance of. They can make out a dark-red color scheme and occasionally green eyes, maybe some hands, maybe a mouth, but never anything definite.
And what more, the Beta Avengers are strong. They are no longer motivated by avenging some silly betas. Now they just want revenge for being treated so shoddily in the series, for being treated badly in the character creation process, for being just cast aside and having elements of them used in my other stories. They can bend the script to their will; they have always had this power, but they really start to take advantage of it.
But two can play at that. The chao finally become the characters they had been developing towards all along. Shade becomes the mentor, the middleman between pre-Season Seven Shade and Future Shade. Dark becomes the insecure buddy who wants respect even if he's not the brightest bulb in the box. Red becomes the smart guy who analyzes things properly and makes sense of the insanity of the show. Shadow becomes the foil for the entire show. He is the personification of growing the beard, of doing the hard work necessary for making a story respectable. He is given a trilby and a purple scarf, and he is properly represented as a messiah.
What more, the chao and the Veteran's Committee finally crack the Octavarium Code present in the majority of my works. I'll just pull this straight from the script:
So yeah, 8 and 5 represent the end. They represent cycles and they represent the end of a cycle, or the point in a cycle where it ends and loops. This is evident in Built For Two, as the first post, made at 8:05 AM, is technically also one of the endings of the story. In Rapture, 8 and 5 are coming up more and more because the end is coming closer and closer. And in DCA, 8 and 5 started really showing up in season seven, because that season properly introduced the concept of the show ending.Chao: I want to get something straight.Red: Ask away.Chao: Why haven't we just.. killed [the Beta Avengers]?Shade: That's.. difficult to explain. For one thing, they're extremely formidable figures. For another thing, we're certain they have much planned.Red: And ultimately, whatever happens in this story is up to the Writing Writer. But DJay doesn't want to help until all the pieces are set.Chao: And what does that mean?ShadeF: It means we haven't reached the right episode yet. We're only on Episode 82, and we still have elements to introduce for the final battle.Chao: How do you know 82 isn't the last episode?Shadow: It's a matter of arc numbers, Chao.Chao: I thought DCA's arc number was 32.Shade: DCA doesn't really have an arc number, although that's probably a good guess if it had one. Eight and five, see, recur in DJay's works a lot these days. We think they only refer to the end.Shadow: I think 8 and 5 are IT.Red: You think, when a story begins to end, the numbers eight and five begin to creep in? And that when it ends, the eight and the five are all that's left?Shadow: Pretty much. The eight and the five are there to link DJay's stories together. They are the numerical representation of cycles and music.Chao: So. So are you saying Episode 85 will be the last episode because of the numbers, alone?Shadow: I'd wager a guess that DJay actually wasn't intending that, but he realized the numbers were there.
What happens next, uh. The collective protagonists decide Shadow needs seven chaos drives, as it's one of the precursors the Writing Writer set for how to end the show. So they decide Shadow needs to find two drives and then he should re-steal his original five from Echo. But then it turns out the Beta Avengers are not only growing further in power, but they've stationed themselves in Chao Talk, which is also where a buttload of chaos drives have been detected.
For reference: Chao Talk was a terrifying place where everything operated on an entirely different set of laws before any chaos drives entered the picture. One chaos drive gave it the power to obfuscate an entire planet's laws of physics and drive its inhabitants insane. And now there are a lot of chaos drives there and an eldritch set of Beta Avengers who can bend the script with more skill than most of the protagonists combined.
And then the Beta Avengers start taking elements from my other works. The Camper Festival appears, complete with EAT.
So finally, the protagonists decide "Okay, we need to go to Chao Talk and do one last adventure to put an end to this show for once and for all."
And just after they leave, Future Shadow reveals to the reader that the forest of Sancheria is also involved in this somehow. Just for dramatic suspense.
That's where we are now. Episode 85 will be a feature-length script, and it will end everything. It's not going to be easy to write, but goddammit, I'm gonna have fun with it.
Any questions? :D