If you can’t surf more than one website on the World Wide Web without seeing your meme popping up, it can only mean one thing—you are insanely famous. This is exactly what has happened to the popular Cartoon Network show about a boy and his loyal dog doing heroic deeds in the Land of Ooo. Adventure Time is now considered a cultural icon, and the hordes of fans and cult-like following of made-up slang prove just how good the cartoon is. If you’re not addicted to the colorful series just yet, here’s why you should tune in to it right now:
1. It’s for kids…but not really.
Sure, Finn the Human and his best friend Jake the Dog may be off to fight monsters and save princesses on a daily basis, and their wild adventures may appeal to eager little kids (even the show’s title is geared towards children). But the beauty of Adventure Time is that the plotlines go deeper than what can be seen at face value, and often, there are dialogues and insights that only grownups can understand. In fact, most of the hardcore fans of the series are adults, because as quirky and adorable as the art can be, the themes are actually for mature audiences. Where else can you find humor that’s about living together with a girlfriend who just gave birth to five kids, or about running away from home to go live in the woods with a can of beans?
- Adventure Time lingo is just lumpin’ mathematical.
Have you ever heard of the words Shmowzow, Slammacow, or Son of a Bleeblop? The show really uses its liberties to invent new phrases and cool words for describing situations. As funny as it is surprisingly apt, the slang is something that the members of the Adventure Time community use themselves and love. For instance, just use the following words to replace “awesome” in a sentence, and you’ve got yourself some certified Adventure Time lingo: mathematical, algebraic, rhombus, math, and tops blooby.
- Lumpy Space Princess is everything.
Purple, lumpy, and with an attitude that just won’t quit, Lumpy Space Princess or LSP is one of the most popular characters in the show. Voiced by Adventure Time creator Pendleton Ward, Lumpy Space Princess has a deep Valley girl voice that’s bratty and bitchy and absolutely perfect. She’s always whining about everything, but she’s just so lumpin’ loveable that she’s become everyone’s favorite. LSP has her own set of lumpy language, too—and it basically involves a lot of lumps. You should hear her scream “Oh my glob!” and “Lump off!”—I swear you’ll want to hear her over and over again. LSP is all about the drama, but despite her spoiled nature, she’s got a good heart deep down those purple lumps she’s so proud of.
- The show itself grows up with you.
It’s not very often that a cartoon features characters that actually age, but that is exactly the case with everyone in Ooo. Finn and Jake age a year with every season, and the events that transpire in every episode are canon and are continued for the rest of the series. There’s a solid sense of continuity in the show, which makes audiences feel like they’re not simply wasting their time. Character backgrounds slowly unfold as pasts are revealed as well, and when events transpire, they become permanent. Jake the Dog really did sire children with his girlfriend Lady Rainicorn, and those kids keep growing up with each new episode (sometimes even faster than he does himself).
- Life lessons abound.
Sure; there are your average lessons on friendship and bravery in every adventure. There are even moments that teach us about puppy love and how people change and fall apart in relationships. But the beauty of Adventure Time is that it’s not afraid to address the hard issues in life as well, and it does not hold back when showing audiences what it’s like in the real world. The Land of Ooo may be set in the post-apocalyptic world after the Great Mushroom War, but the lessons contained within are more real than ever. There are stories of loss and of moving on, of dementia and misplaced love, as well as abandonment and depression. Characters will not hesitate to fall apart in the show, and there are plenty of moments where audiences can expect to shed a tear. Simply watch any episode about Marceline the Vampire Queen and Simon a.k.a. the Ice King and you’re sure to well up at their story.
- Adventure Time is just too imaginative and insane.
…insanely good, that is. There are hidden gems or Easter eggs in a lot of episodes, like the whole arc where you can always see the Evil Snail waving at you from behind the camera. There are actual threats that are dark and mysterious, making you realize just how invested you are in the lives of these characters you’ve grown to love so much. Rooting for them is as natural as biting your nails in anxiety when villains appear to win. Plus, there’s a bunch of non-stereotypical characters that make the show appealing: the science geek Princess Bubblegum who rules the Candy Kingdom with a democratic fist, Marcy the immortal vampire who only sucks the color red out of things, the bad guy Ice King who just wants to have a friend, and BMO the sentient robot pet whose innocence and pure heart makes it the most loyal sidekick you can ever ask for.
Setting aside the wacky misadventures of the main characters (sometimes involving burritos, apple pies, and bacon pancakes), what make Adventure Time a genuinely good show are the hearts with which each character acts upon. They may just be drawings on pen and paper, but these fictional faves can teach us so much more about life if we just pay attention—plus, they’re just really cute, too. Do you need any more convincing? Tune in to Cartoon Network to catch this show now!
*Videos courtesy of YouTube. Photo from official Facebook page.