Comic Book: Adventure Time

Adventure Time is a comic book series by KaBOOM! Comics. The first 34 issues were written by Ryan North, with Christopher Hastings to write the book from that point on. It is based on the animated series.

See also Adventure Time Marceline And The Scream Queens, Adventure Time With Fionna And Cake, and Adventure Time Graphic Novels.

This comic book series provides examples of:

  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: In the computer virus arc, the evil virus Kewlboy is accidentally created by the combination of a "harmless" virus designed to improve computer games, and a military malware program designed to destroy computer systems.
  • Alternate Continuity: The comic series has introduced two key developments that may make it diverge from the cartoon—the Lich is thrown into the sun and the missing chunk of the planet is restored. Also, in the backup story of issue #11, we find out that in this continuity, Billy is still alive.
    • An alternate theory is that all the events of the comic book take place during the fourth season, since the characters and their relationships seem to follow that status quo. (This was shot down in the bubblegum kudzu arc, where Lemongrab is clearly depicted as on his way to his monstrous state in "Too Old".)
    • This states that it is canon, and set during and/or after the show. The blog entry notes that there should only be small divergences due to little finicky last minute additions to the show. Given the two major divergences mentioned above, either this is Blatant Lies or there's a rather depressing amount of Status Quo Is God (if not Foregone Conclusion) for the next few seasons on the show (compared to the comic, anyway).
      • It is heavily implied that the Lich hasn't come around in a while in the comic. And the missing chunk isn't that big of a deal in the show, it's just kind of there.
      • The show creators, on the other hand, have explicitly stated that the comics are not canon and are never taken into consideration when making episodes of the show.
  • Arc Villain: In the comics' multi-issue arcs, the Lich and Kewlboy.
  • Armed with Canon: The comic keeps on throwing bones to Finn/Bubblegum shippers in ways that seem overtly designed to knock down the obstacles to the ship in the TV series. In two separate potential futures shown in the comics, Finn and Bubblegum are in a relationship. (In the first one, Bubblegum explicitly says that the age difference isn't so big now Finn's in his twenties. And in the second one, they're actually in a three-way marriage with Marceline to avoid upsetting the Bubblegum/Marceline shippers.)
  • Art Initiates Life: Desert Princess's specialty is making animated sand sculptures.
  • Art Shift: In Issue 11, Finn, Jake and Marceline go into BMO to play "Super Guts Punch 3", which is done in pixel art.
  • Bad Future: The time travel arc in issues 6-9, in which BMO has accidentally created evil robots that conquer all of Ooo.
  • Bag of Holding: The comic's first story involves the Lich using one in an attempt to suck up the entire planet. Then he'll toss the bag into the sun.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Justified; the comic notes that the gems allow Finn and Jake to breathe in space.
  • Better Than a Bare Bulb: Pretty much everything gets viciously lampshaded either by the characters in the narrative or via notes in the margins.
  • Big "NO!": Delivered by Finn when he and Jake enter the magic bag.
  • Bizarro Universe: Adventure Tim's world in issue 5.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: There's some blood in this.
  • Blood-Splattered Warrior: Finn covered head-to-toe in giant fish innards after disembowelling Ice King's giant fish monster.
  • Brain Uploading: Randall M Byron, a pre-war computer programmer who brain uploaded himself to survive the Mushroom War.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: "Hynden, is that you?"
    Princess Bubblegum: No it's me Marceline.
  • Brick Joke: In Issue 27, PB calls Finn and Jake to help out with a ghost problem, except that they're not home because they are the ghosts (unintentionally) causing the problem (don't worry, they get better). So, PB is about to call her back-up choice, which Finn hopes isn't a couple of knock-offs named something like Flynn and Blake. It's actually a team like the Ghostbusters, but guess who shows up at the end of Issue 29, after the storyline is over?
  • Call Back: Finn's badass future version in the time travel arc is based on the future version of himself he saw/imagined at the beginning of "Mortal Folly".
  • Canon Foreigner: Desert Princess and Water Princess.
  • Catchphrase/Title Drop
  • Choose Your Own Adventure: In Issue 10 and the KaBOOM! Summer Blast Free Comic Book Day Edition reprint.
  • Contagious A.I.: The villainous Kewlboy.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In the third issue, Finn refers to advice given to him by Abraham Lincoln in the past on Mars, which is a hallucination he had in the cartoon's pilot.
    • The mysterious missing chunk of the planet is explored and filled in.
    • Issue 7 shows Bubblegum wearing her rock T-shirt from "What was Missing".
    • Issue 11 references the mess made the last time Finn and Jake tried going into BMO to play video games, in the episode "Guardians of Sunshine".
    • Issue 12 is a sequel to the TV episode "Wizard Battle", with many of the same wizards turning up. Plus Marceline's abusive ex-boyfriend Ash from "Memory of a Memory".
    • Issue 15 shows Lumpy Space Princess wearing a carrier bag as a dress, as in "Gotcha!".
    • In Issue 18, the treasure of Hunson Abadeer's branch of the dungeon turns out to be a moldy old pile of french fries, implied to be the same fries of Marceline's that he ate according to "It Came From the Nightosphere" and "Memory of a Memory".
    • In issues 18-9, Finn's Lotus-Eater Machine hallucination is the Farmworld from the TV episodes "Finn the Human"/"Jake the Dog".
    • Issue 19 has Jake's treasure from beating the whole dungeon be a mailman outfit, referring back to his childhood dream as revealed in "Princess Cookie".
    • In Issue 21, Princess Bubblegum calls back the events of "Slumber Party Panic" when she says the most the Gumball Guardians will do to trouble-makers is "make you to do their math homework".
    • Issue 28 features Anti-Ghost Princess, who is Ghost Princess from the same-titled episode back from the dead and busting Ghosts throughout Ooo.
    • In the same arc, BMO and Ice King getting on surprisingly well refers back to Finn's speculation, and the behaviour of their miniature versions, in "All the Little People".
  • Depending on the Artist
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Issue 25 starts off with Carl the Gem's creation in the dinosaur age. And the story of a random Tyrannosaurus rex.
    • Dinosaur fossils frequently show up in Issues 1 and 2.
  • Evil Gloating: The Lich is more verbose in this, which irks many fans.
    • Kewlboy (formally Ewlbo) frequently does this.
  • Exact Words: In Issue 20, the Gumball Guardian goes berserk because Ice King mind-controlled it, and then tried to release it with the words "Go do whatever. Go nuts!".
  • Fake-Out Fade-Out: At the beginning of Issue 3.
  • Fan Fic: In-universe, again by the Ice King, titled "Fionna and Cake meet Finn and Jake".
  • Flipping the Table: Finn does this when he gets frustrated in Issue 3.
    Finn: HOW! COME! WE! (table flip) KEEP NOT WINNING?!
    • Jake tries to do this in Issue 5, but fails to realize that Adventure Tim has nailed his kitchen table to the floor.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: In Issue 10 and the KaBOOM! Summer Blast Free Comic Book Day Edition reprint, Finn and Jake end up under the influence of the reader in a Choose Your Own Adventure story. All their methods of getting their free will back involve messing with the reader.
  • Fusion Dance:
    • The second issue implies that Desert Princess is actually an amalgamation of various Candy citizens.
    • In the ghost arc, Finn, Jake, PB, and all the Candy Kingdom subjects combine into one huge ghost to beat up the Jerk Ass ghosts.
  • Future Badass: Seen in the Time Travel story arc in issues 6-9.
  • Gilligan Cut: While Finn and Jake explore an abandoned military factory in issue 26, Finn remarks "I can't imagine a single thing our pals could be doing that's more interesting than exploring this crazy old dungeon!" Cue panels of Marceline fighting a dragon, Lumpy Space Princess fighting a robotic version of herself in space, and Princess Bubblegum... sitting in bed, reading a book.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: The mind-controlling bubblegum monster turns out to be another of PB's attempts to create a successor.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm: PB attempts this on the Lich with a broken flask.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: In the first issue of the time travel arc, Jake uses the first time machine thousands of times to try to make his day perfect.
  • Handshake Substitute: The fist bump, which the comic notes there can not be enough of in any story, whether fiction or nonfiction.
  • Hollywood Hacking: The visual conventions of Hollywood Hacking are exhaustively parodied in the computer virus arc.
  • Homage: Marceline's poster in issue 12 is a homage to the style of Alfonse Mucha.
  • Hurl It into the Sun: The Lich's plan with the entire planet with the help of a Bag of Holding. He ends up being cast into the sun himself.
  • Improbable Antidote: Lemongrab's lemon bodily fluids turn out to be the only thing that can stop the mind-controlling bubblegum.
  • Lampshade Wearing: Lemongrab and his Lemon Camel are seen wearing lampshades after Jake's crazy party at the start of issue 7.
  • Late to the Tragedy: Finn and Jake in the bubblegum arc, because they didn't bother to listen to PB's message for over a day.
  • Laughing Mad: PB at the end of the bubblegum arc, when she realises that she needed Finn and Jake (but in this case, especially Jake) to save the day again.
  • Lethal Joke Item: In the first arc, the Lich demonstrates just how dangerous a Bag of Holding can be.
  • Like a Badass out of Hell: It turns out that Ghost/Warrior Princess came back to life out of pure heroic willpower.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: What the Lich's dungeon does to Finn, Jake and Ice King.
  • Magic Pants: In the bubblegum arc, this happens to Marceline's red leggings when she shifts to giant bat monster form.
  • Making a Splash: Water Princess.
  • Mind-Control Eyes: In the bubblegum arc, the characters under the bubblegum's control get pink eyes.
  • Mundane Utility: In one short, Finn and Jake try to get Marceline to suck all the red colour out of their clothes, after they get accidentally dyed in the wash. Marceline is angry and makes them do all her housework before she'll help them.
  • No Time to Explain: Said by Finn when he and Jake appear out of nowhere in Issue 3, and then Princess Bubblegum says it's clear what's going on.
  • Ocular Gushers: How Water Princess uses her powers.
  • Opening Shout-Out: The first issue opens with Finn and Jake filming the show's opening flight over Ooo, and then shows versions of the first two scenes of the credit sequence proper, with Jake jumping on Finn's head and Finn riding a stilt-legged Jake through mountains. The second issue again imitates the opening flight to show the damage the Lich has done to Ooo.
  • Painting the Medium: The Lich speaks with white text on a black speech balloon. Marceline speaks with yellow all-caps text on a magenta speech balloon when she's a monster.
  • Pictorial Speech Bubble: In issue 15, Magic Man curses Finn and Jake with being only able to use these to communicate.
  • Pillow Pistol: PB keeps a fire extinguisher full of jaw-breaker candy by her bed, in case she suddenly needs to fortify her bedroom.
  • P.O.V. Cam: "Adventure Me" is entirely seen through the eyes of an unidentified friend of Finn and Jake.
  • The Power of Love: Destroys the Lich's illusions in issue 19, expressed through Finn and Jake rapping.
  • Rapid-Fire Typing: In the computer virus arc, Marceline has to explain to Finn and Jake that "hacking" does not mean typing random characters as fast as possible.
  • The Reveal: "Adventure Me" from Issue 20 is from the point of view of an unknown friend of Finn and Jake, who turns out to be Princess Bubblegum.
  • Robot War: In issue 7, Finn and Jake accidentally travel into the future and find BMO accidentally started one.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: The evil computer virus Kewlboy was trapped in an old cartridge of a computer game called Super Guts Punch 3, until BMO found it and loaded it into hirself.
  • Ship Tease: Issue 8 makes it pretty clear how Ryan North feels about the twist at the end of "Too Young." Also counts as a subversion of Ship Sinking from the show, if the book is canon.
  • Shout-Out:
    Marceline: Huh what? Hynden, is that you?
    Princess Bubblegum: No it's me Marceline.
    • Adventure Tim is a shout out to the Alternate Universe of Farscape seen in the episodes "Unrealised Realities" and "Prayer", in which pairs of the regular characters somehow got combined into a single person.
    • In the time travel arc, the robots turning evil when they get wet is a Shout Out to Gremlins.
    • One of the time travel issues has a short back-up in which Bubblegum and BMO discuss various hazards of time travel, with explicit Shout Outs to Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five, Ray Bradbury's "A Sound of Thunder", and Larry Niven's "All The Myriad Ways".
    • Marceline's outfit in issues 11-2 includes a shop assistant's uniform shirt with a namebadge reading "Rose".
    • Issue 11 has a montage of scenes from Super Guts Punch 3 featuring references to Pitfall, Q*bert, Super Mario Bros. 1, Donkey Kong, and Excite Bike.
    • In Issue 20, Princess Bubblegum's adventuring suit is a black and green logo-free version of a classic Batgirl costume.
    • In Issue 21, Peppermint Butler tells a bunch of dignitaries here to see Princess Bubblegum that "The Princess is in another castle."
    • Issue 25's intro is a shout out to the writer's webcomic Dinosaur Comics. There's even a small caption on the bottom of the page that says: "I am enjoying these... these Dinosaur Comics. HOPEFULLY YOU ARE AS WELL?"
    • In Issue 26, the machine that turns Finn and Jake into ghosts resembles the machine from Casper that turns ghosts into people.
  • Signature Style: It's pretty obvious that Ryan North writes the comic. Perhaps...super obvious?
  • Spin-Off: Several mini-series, beginning with Adventure Time Marceline And The Scream Queens, which was announced after only two issues of the ongoing series had been published.
  • Split Personality: Adventure Tim is a fusion of Finn and Jake with two separate personalities.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike:
    • "AMAZING DRILL HANDS!!"
    • After the earth is restored, Desert Princess goes missing, and Jake tries to figure out where she went by imitating a princess and saying, "I'm the new princess in town! I'm super nice and everybody likes me!" Cut to the kidnapped Desert Princess, who is bewildered as to why Ice King would kidnap her because she's super nice and everybody likes her.
  • Stylistic Suck: The Ice King's new fanfiction is about as terrible as the last one.
  • Suddenly Always Knew That: Marceline's computer skills in the computer virus arc.
  • Swallowed Whole: Marceline does this to PB to protect her from the mind-controlling bubblegum. PB's response is "Oh my gosh, let's not do that again for a long time, okay?".
  • Talking to Themself: Adventure Tim does this in two different text colours.
  • This Is a Drill: Finn and Jake's initial plan to escape the bag.
  • Time Skip: A memory-eating monster causes Finn to undergo a few of these in the "Mnemnoid" arc (issues #31-34).
  • Unsound Effect: write write write write
  • Unusual Euphemism: Staying true to the cartoon. "Asymptotic!"
  • Violence Really Is the Answer: Again, staying true to the show. "But there's gotta be SOMETHING we can punch to escape!"
  • The Virus: The mind-controlling bubblegum in Issues 21-4.
  • What The Hell, Reader?: Marceline calls out the reader in the second issue for turning the page instead of staying to help her fight the Lich.
  • Who You Gonna Call?: The Ghost Destroyers in issues #26-9.
  • World of Pun:
    • There is a princess who lives in the magic bag named Desert Princess... who's made up of various desserts.
    • What time is it? Ad Venture Time!