Animation Quick Look: Adventure Time

Welcome to animation quick look, where I watch several episodes of anything from popular Cartoon Network shows to obscure Japanese animation and tell you if it’s worth checking out.

Adventure Time is a goddamn phenomenon. It’s on Hot Topic T-Shirts and has several video games to it’s name. It has fans of all ages. Not having regular access to cable for the the last decade or so I never really got around to watching it on cartoon network, but as it’s recently been available on Netflix I decided to finally give it a try.

Adventure Time tells the tale of Finn, a young heroic adventurer and his best friend Finn, a talking dog with the ability to stretch and change his size at will (because why not) as they have various adventures through the magical land of Ooo.

And I’m really struggling as to why this is so popular amongst different age groups. I can see the kid appeal. It’s colorful, admittedly has unique designs and is full of the completely wacky random humor that kids usually love. But it doesn’t go beyond that. The humor isn’t clever, it’s just completely random for the sake of being random the same way Family Guy is and usually gets heavily criticized for. Hell it seems a more grown up Teletubbies, where there is little range or depth to the characters and little in the way of actual plot, just a bunch of random nonsense. I can appreciate random humor and weird characters, but they alone cannot carry a show and at least need to actually be a joke. I think the only time I even smiled in the 6 episodes I watched was at the end of an episode where they guide a frail old little elephant through a dangerous forest to a crystal fruit she’s wanted to try and after eating a bite she explodes and that’s the end of the episode. Random on its own is not funny, and random is this show’s whole theme. Maybe this is just a type of humor that’s not for me. Possibly because I’m not eight or stoned. Hell I love Spongebob Squarepants, which is a bunch of randomness but wrapped in some consistency and well-defined characters that Adventure Time is sorely lacking. To say I hated it is far too strong but I sure as hell didn’t get and do not understand the wide crossover appeal it has.

Final Rating: 2/5 exploding little elephants