I found Adventure Time to indeed have all the merits that are attributed to it. It has a magnificent sense of humour, a natural and realistic dialogue, it tries to develop it's characters as best as it can in a 9-11 minute format, and, of course, it truly shows fathomless imagination.
It is tragic that it couldn't escape marysuedom.
It began as a short that basically has the conventional "rescue the princess" plot, albeit with a 12 year old. In in itself that is quite clichéd and moronic, but it becomes genuinely creepy if you think about it more than once. "Penn" - as the short's protagonist was called - truly is an Author Avatar
, being basically Pendleton Ward as a 12 year old slaying monsters with his sharpei and rescuing his preteen crush - who, mind you, in that short didn't even have a personality. This is exactly
the sort of thing you see in My Inner Life
, the difference being that, for some idiotic reason, Penn is considered "likable" while Jenna is rightfully the subject of ridicule. Frankly, Penn and Jenna are exactly the same character, the difference being that one has a penis while the other has cat-motiffs.
To be fair, a lot of positive changes occured in the remake, the actual series. Bubblegum has an actual personality, the Ice King is a tragic villain rather than [just] a sexual competitor, Pendleton voices another character in the show that is most certainly not based on his actual personality, and Finn does have genuine problems and flaws. And most shockingly, it still manages to be fundamentally a power fantasy, and the flaws and problems do little more than to highlight this. For instance, Finn is stupid and judgemental, and not only do these traits rarely place him in genuine trouble, they either end up being fundamental in a non-ironic way, or are actually idolised
. He has problems, but these problems seem to be "masturbatory suffering", on other words, to satisfy the author
rather than provide a serious narrative. For example, most of his romantic issues with Princess Bubblegum are basically the sort of thing one sees in "nice guy" fantasies, to the point that one has to wonder if the writers are projecting themselves into the character.
Fundamentally, Finn is more likable than Enoby
, but that's like comparing a school shooting to the Apartheid.