"Absolution" is the fifth episode in the "PioneersProductions Finale Series". The video opens with Randy
playing a tune on a synthesizer. His head slowly lowers with sadness as the opening title sequence starts. The following scene is filled with pan shots. Randy talks over the footage in detail about how mysterious death can be. He is informed by Ember that there isn't a way to bring Froggy and the Whale back to life. He lowers his head in devastation.
The video flashes back to March 2013. Randy is shown constructing an Ember McLain "Call of Duty: Black Ops II" emblem on his Xbox 360. This scene shows us the last time Randy felt true happiness. A "Remember" instrumentation cover plays throughout the scene.
The ensuing scene is one of the most reflective scenes in "PioneersProductions" history. Randy gives a monologue about his life and why he's been isolated and alone. Ember listens as Randy expresses his true feelings. She was the one who has lifted him from the depths of despair. He finally comes to terms with his mistakes and realizes he has to let Froggy and the Whale go.
He stands up and puts Froggy and the Whale into a box; duct taping it shut. A "Let It Go" metal remix begins to play. Randy makes his way through the house, with each room triggering a memory from video's past. After a slow descent to the backyard woods, Randy pours gasoline on the box. He lights a match and hesitates for a brief moment, but gains the courage to ignite the fire. The box gets engulfed with flames. As he stares at the flames, "I'm never going back. The past is in the past," becomes audible; breaking its silence from the instrumentation mix. Randy slowly walks away from the fire and takes one last look at the ashes of his friends. He gives a nod and heads back inside.
Ember tries to comfort him by saying she'll always be there for him. The tone takes a strange turn as Randy tells her that he's "ready." He puts a gun to his head and says, "everyone goes someday!" He pulls the trigger and falls to the floor. Blood gushes out of the side of his head as the video fades to black. A crane shot hovers over a large group of Ember McLain figures. The camera passes through them and ends on a shot of two green eyes, awaking in the darkness. The video ends with a montage of moments from 2010 - 2015, alongside the ending credits.
- The fifth episode in the "Finale" Saga.
- "Absolution" was intended to be the grand finale for both the series and "PioneersProductions".
- Ember Florez's model was completely reconstructed from top to bottom in Photoshop. However, shots were carefully planned out because the model didn't have any legs.
- The original plot for "Absolution" involved Randy traveling to the underworld in search of Froggy and the Whale. The limits of technology stopped the production for the video, and it was cancelled after months of failed script writing. A title wasn't even chosen. During December 2014, "Absolution" was written. It took three different scripts to perfect; the third being the final version.
- Randy had to put sticky notes around the camera lens until he memorized the monologue scene. The final cut of the scene was a combination of at least three different takes.
- "Send Request" is shown for the first time during the opening title sequence.
- For the first time, a synthesizer was used to record the soundtrack.
- The soundtrack for "Absolution" was one of the more frustrating albums to compose. The album was mostly improvisation. After messing around with tunes while recording, overdubs were added later and mixed. Think of it as a template album. Ironically, the album is one of the best sounding of the first three ("Extinction", "Resurrection", "Absolution"). Mallorie Suzanne (Ember Florez's voice over actress) considers the "Absolution Soundtrack" to be the best sounding of the three, feeling the music perfectly fits the scenes.
- A lot of the earlier music tracks in the video were shortened in post-production. This is mainly because of notes that didn't fit the scene. A few tracks have portions where a pitch bender bar was used. This is heard during the ending of the "Reflection" track. Being that most of the tracks were improvised and recorded on the spot, there were plenty of areas that didn't fit the scenes in the video.
- The opening scene with Randy playing the synthesizer wasn't intended to be in the video. The tune was improvised on the spot. A lot of shots for "Absolution" weren't scripted. The scene was filmed on December 27, 2014 at both 2:30am and 5:40pm. The 5:40pm session was used in the finished production, and consisted of at least 20 different takes.
- The March 2013 flashback sequence was originally going to be the opening scene, and was the first portion shot for the video. As Randy puts the pieces of the Ember emblem together, some shots were reversed in post-production to give the illusion of the pieces being connected.
- The Ember McLain "Black Ops II" emblem was originally constructed in March 2013. It took over 17 hours to create, being Randy was using a standard definition television without a game capture device. It would later become the face of "PioneersProductions" on all social media. The emblem remained mostly unchanged until late May, when Randy purchased an Elgato Game Capture. Minor touches to the skin color were made, as well as slight repositioning of the hair and eyes. In October 2014, gradient shadows were added in Photoshop, along with outer and inner glows. A Christmas version was also displayed during November/December of 2013 and 2014, with a purple Santa hat on Ember's head.
- The "Let It Go" sequence wasn't scripted. Everything was recorded in the moment. The scene never would've happened if a link to Idina Menzel's "Let It Go" wasn't posted during one of Randy's Live streams, in November 2014. Haley is credited with giving Randy the idea for a "Let It Go" sequence.
- Frozen played a huge role in the writing for "Absolution". A lot of Elsa's character is displayed in Randy in the monologue scene. Elsa is also visible for a few frames as Randy exits his room, carrying the box with the Frog and Whale inside. She also appears in the bottom left portion of the frame during the "past is in the past" vocals.
- The letters "EGS" are barely visible on Randy's shirt collar in the video's thumbnail. For 3 months, the letters weren't visible on the soundtrack cover.
- The box burning scene was one of the coldest days of 2014. Randy's fingers were numb at the end of the scene. Vapor can be seen coming out of his mouth as the match is lit. Snot is also frozen to his nose as he wipes it away, just before leaving the fire.
- The "Reflection" track opens with a slight nod to Queen's, "Bohemian Rhapsody".
- This is one of the very few videos in "PioneersProductions" history to have virtually no humor.
- Players in the "Black Ops II" scene include Makemebad35, David (SuperKaiju87), and Hobo Deadfish. This game footage is from October 04, 2013. David's laughter is actually taken from the round ending kill cam of that match. Randy was actually playing on the opposing team during this match but through the magic of editing, it was made out to be that all players could be heard simultaneously (or in a party). Randy was reacting to nothing on the screen during this scene. The game clip was chosen in post-production. The final frames of the game footage had to be slowed down because a menu screen appears, when in reality Randy isn't even pressing buttons on the controller.
- Both the "Remember" instrumentation cover and "Let It Go" metal remix tracks had to be slowed down in post-production in order to keep pace with the actions in the video.
- During filming, Randy removed the Frog and Whale from the box before duct taping the box shut.
- "EGS" is visible on the top right corner of the box that Randy burns.
- The box that Randy burns the Frog and Whale in was originally used as a prop to hold empty beer bottles at his bed side.
- Black spots flicker and disappear during the pan shot with the beer bottles during the opening scene. This wasn't fixed in editing because it would've ruined the color and shadow effects.
- The poster image of "Absolution" was remastered in March 2016 with slight changes to Ember Florez's model. The mouth was properly positioned (originally angled) and additional bluish shades were added.