It's hard to believe it's been five years since Adventure Time debuted on Cartoon Network. Kids everywhere fell in love with the Land of Ooo and its unique and colorful inhabitants. Cartoon Network is known for airing animated series that entertain adults as much as children. With the late night emergence of Adult Swim, the network had expanded options regarding adult cartoons. Adventure Time doesn't need to be restricted to Adult Swim and continues to gain and maintain a surprisingly large adult audience while being entertaining and acceptable for kids too.
There are many facets of this show that make it so entertaining to adults. From complex themes to characters with layers, Adventure Time has more to offer than meets the eye. As a passenger on the Finn and Jake bandwagon, I'd like to highlight a few of my favorite things about this amazing cartoon.
1. Mathematical! A Land as Unique as Its Language
There are many references to the real world in the Land of Ooo, its vocabulary being one of the most recognizable and repetitive. Many adults would love to be a potty mouth in public sometimes. Adventure Time gives them a way to do that while giving children alternative, socially acceptable terms to use when angry or emotional. I've actually replaced my use of expletives with Adventure Time terms to decrease my son's exposure to such harsh language. He thinks it's funny when I say "Oh my Glob!" or "What the Hey Hey?", and will repeat these terms instead of causing trouble for cursing in school or daycare. In addition to alternative curse words, Adventure Time creates a fun and unique diction that will enamor even the most hardened of adults. With dialogue alone, the cartoon can intrigue and pull you in.
2. Lovable Characters with Pizzazz and Depth
Every single resident of Ooo has a story. With so many characters to love, Adventure Time has something for everyone. Finn and Jake, the heroes, create the image of the perfect tag team. Princess Bubblegum brings love and understanding to the mix and Marceline provides comedy with a dash of evil. With dozens of supporting personalities to interact with, these distinctive and complex characters have a lot to teach us about life.
Many lessons can be taken from Adventure Time. A few that stick out in my mind are: beauty is not skin deep, nothing is ever as it seems, sometimes all enemies need is a little love and rushing through a task tends to make the job more difficult.
In Season 3, we were introduced to Fionna and Cake, the gender swapped versions of Finn and Jake. A product of Ice King's fan fiction hobby, these periodic alternate dimension episodes are just plain awesome. Every character has a gender swapped counterpart. It's amazing to see the differences in storyline coupled with altered character interactions. The series within a series can also speak to the notion that gender does not a person make, which is a wonderful message to send to children.
3. Break Time? Adventure Time!
Many adults have very little wiggle room in their schedules. With so much to do and so little time, any minute of our day that can be spent outside of ourselves is appreciated. In addition to everything mentioned above that makes Adventure Time so great for adults, every episode is only 11 minutes long! Such a short running time makes for easier marathons and the luxury of vacationing in Ooo while dining in the break room!
Regardless of your age, Adventure Time can take you away from your troubles for a while. You can sit down with it for hours or squeeze some enjoyment into your busy day of adulting. With a light, humorous tone and themes that anyone can relate to, it's a cartoon worthy of your spare time. I can't think of a better way to spend 11 minutes of break time. So if you ever need some space to breathe and time to recharge, walk away from whatever is stressing you out and take 11 minutes to yourself.
What about Adventure Time draws you in? Talk to me in the comments! Follow me here for more posts about Adventure Time and other reality escapes. Don't forget to keep calm and watch more TV!