TV Party Tonight! 019

TV Party Tonight! 019

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Thursday, 20 October 2016
COLUMN

Adventure Time The Complete Seasons 5 and 6 [Blu-ray]

 

Adventure Time is one of those shows I went into with a lot of hesitation. With the thorough infantilization of pop culture nowadays — Yo Gabba Gabba, the Ninja Turtles and their “comeback,” the resurrection and long-stagnant comic book hero movie, Transformers (as only children can find something worthwhile in those movies), Stranger Thing — one wonders whether adults watch these shows because they are actually good, or because they crave reference in their lives (“Oh yeah, I remember watching shows like this when I was a kid!”). Adventure Time most certainly falls into the infantilization category, because even though it’s a show clearly made for kids, it has a huge adult following. Can anyone blame them? Even the political climate we live in feels like a grade school playground.

So, does Adventure Time merit it’s following with adults, or is it just the mother of all referential shows?

Well it just so happens that Adventure Time is an impressive show on many levels. The premise is that 13-year old Finn and his shape-shifting dog Jake live in a tree house in a magical land and go on adventures. I’m not sure what the show was like before Season three or what it’s turned into, but I can safely say that Adventure Time is very fun to watch. The characters are all highly original (LSP is my favorite), the art is gorgeous and simplistic (look at those title cards!), the voice acting is top notch (because they went with voice actors like John DiMaggio and Tom Kenny instead of boring celebrities), the dialogue is sharp and slap-sticky and has an edge to it, and the stories? Well, remember we’re dealing with 11 minute episodes (Adult Swim style), so the pacing is fast fast fast, like a kid with ADD. Through its run, Adventure Time has managed to stay creative with every season. New characters are being introduced, different animation styles are being explored, and the show has kept its tradition of playing with dialogue.

Seasons 5 and 6, which we’re reviewing here, are particularly special in the run of the series. Not just because it’s dealing with some pretty heavy concepts that I can’t imagine how kids are going to wrap their minds around it (themes like fatherhood, love, and rejection), but also because, to be honest, the Lemongrab saga has transformed fromseriously obnoxious to one of my favorite things in the show. A one-dimensional character’s story now involves cruelty, slavery, hope and salvation. I honestly tip my hat to the creators for bringing such heavy concepts to the show. Instead of being a one-trick pony, Adventure Time has managed to grow up along with its audience, and maybe even a little too quickly at times.

As far as special features, season 5 and 6 are a little skimpy compare to previous seasons, omitting the commentaries (which, fair enough, were not that vital) but including extensive animatics, concept art, and featurettes.

So, in summation, Adventure Time is just so well crafted and casts such a wide net that it can appeal to a broad audience. Seasons 5 and 6 have set the bar pretty high for what the show can do, but as it’s always done in the past, it’s also bound to exceed our expectations.

Get your blu rays here and here!

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