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How Will We View Adventure Time in 20 Years?

How Will We View Adventure Time in 20 Years?

Adventure Time is
far and away the
hottest cartoon on
TV right now, this
very second. Nothing even
comes close to Pendleton
Ward’s trippy explosion
of colour and cavalcade
of whimsy that airs
on Cartoon Network and
has legions of fans
around the world.

We’ve been here
before of course.
Ren &
(along with
Rugrats and Doug)
lit up the otherwise
desolate land of
animated kids TV
shows. The
made animation cool for
adults again after
a thirty year hiatus.
And the likes of
Beavis &
has become
forever beloved by people
of a certain age.

All the examples
mentioned above have
remained well-known
and popular since their
prime. Some are
noted for their superior
quality while others
are constantly noted
for their continued
impact on contemporary
culture. Only The
Simpsons has managed
to achieve both while
remaining in production
for a full 25

So how will
Adventure Time be
seen in 2023? Will
we look back on
it with the rose-tinted
glasses that we
do with say, Doug? Will
we (rightly?) praise
it for its innovative
approach to character
and storytelling? Or
will we lament it
for forcing its style
on all subsequent

Lastly, will we
look on Adventure
as the start
of a great era,
or the pinnacle
of one?

Charles Kenny writes prolifically on his own blog, The Animation Anomaly.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged ,



Comparing AT to the simplistic styles of older cartoons like The Flinstones, The Power Puff Girls and etc. is a waste of time, all those shows lack a strong storyline, it's this-happens-in-this-episode and that's it, whereas AT tells a deep, complex, subtext-laden story in a puzzle manner that let's you want more while giving you a lot more. If it's creators ever fully explain The Mushroom War, the show will lose it's substance 'cause that may well be the biggest part of the series, not saying Finn's history, or why we have princesses but no princes, king or queens should be overlooked. I agree that the series began to develop well into itself with the 3rd season, but what's the point of getting into that if you missed the first 2?
Adventure Time may form one of the biggest cult followings in a long time and I think in 20 years, still airing or not, it'll remain a timeless classic.


While I cannot comment on "Gravity Falls" or "Phineas & Ferb" (have not seen so much as one episode of either show) — I think we cannot underestimate the artistic daringness of "Adventure Time."

First of all, the series has continuity and builds upon its characters. More and more we get glimpses into the 'Mushroom War' that turned Earth into Ooo. We have learned much about how Simon became the Ice King and his early relationship with Marceline. Tell me what other children's series have this kind of recurring backstory other than a few episodes? In AT the backstory is a crucial component of the plot – these characters actually have a deeper psychology than what is seen on the surface.

Episodes such as "A Glitch is a Glitch" and "Puhoy" are existential on level I have never seen in children's shows.

The episode "Thank You" in which a Snow Golem forms an impossible friendship with a Fire Wolf is moving and pure art.

I think anyone who dismisses this show as the flavor of the month or generic only saw the first two seasons and don't realize that beginning with the third – the show really began to hit its stride and was no longer just about having fun and being silly but now strays into some heady, experimental territory.

I love this show. I saw the pilot ep made for Nickelodeon years ago and then eagerly followed its pre-production for TV. I sat in my dorm room freshman year and watched every episode premiere during the first season. Now I have the new episodes download through iTunes. This show will definitely influence others for years to come and deserves a more serious study of its daringness – rather than a cursory glance at its superficial weirdness (which only masks the depth contained within.)

Also, search this new NPR article for even more articulate love for this show (I guess I cannot link to it on here because it could be spam):
"An 'Adventure' For Kids And Maybe For Their Parents, Too"


"And the likes of Beavis & Butthead has become forever beloved by people of a certain age."
Both teens of the 90s and today?

John Paul Cassidy

I actually enjoy ADVENTURE TIME! There are some who dismiss it as "weird and hipstery." True, but that's its charm. It's very imaginative and trippy in a YELLOW SUBMARINE sort of way. It's an enjoyable show, worthy of its accolades. (If you don't like this series, try BRAVEST WARRIORS, also created by Pen Ward, on Cartoon Hangover!)

If ADVENTURE TIME continues to be handled well for a time, in 20 years, it will be just as well remembered as other classics like REN & STIMPY and THE POWERPUFF GIRLS.


Love adventure time and regular show. They are definitely NOT kids shows XD

Take acid and watch five short graybles or a glitch is a glitch. Your mind, will be blown.

Life Times

This is the most annoying show ever. This and the Regular Show. I can't believe this is what cartoons have come to. Had good shows like the Flintstones, Fosters Home, etc and now this. Maybe, I'm being harsh and have grown up but I do think this show is a waste of time. I'll stick to my anime like Bleach for example.


It says hottest thing not most popular thing, just to make a point!


Not to make a point but Phineas and Ferb is the most popular cartoon on tv right now.

Zoran Taylor

* I mean twenty years. Actually no, fuck that, just ten.

Zoran Taylor

We won't. We will have realized that Gravity Falls was ten times better. Adventure Time will be relegated to nostalgic curiosity status, while Alex Hirsch will be recognized as the most important commercial animation creator/series director of a generation. Disagree? See you in ten years…..

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