The End is Nigh for “Adventure Time”... And that’s Good!
I’m sure that you have all heard the news by now: Adventure Time will be ending in 2018.
But what if I told you this is a good thing?
“GunterFan! Have you forsaken the show that you once loved?”
No, not at all. In fact, quite the contrary—I still think that Adventure Time is the best show on television right now.
For some weird and silly reason, American television has never quite figured out how to properly end shows. Take The Office for instance. This was my absolute favorite series from 2005 to 2013. For the longest time, it was the wittiest and best-written show on the air. However, from 2008 until the end, it was a shadow of its former glory. The producers had several opportunities to end it before its actually finale, but each time they decided to plod on, telling increasingly tired and less interesting stories. While season 9 was better than season 8 (the true nadir of the show), those last few seasons were not that great.
Other times, shows have the opportunity to end things on their own terms, but instead they decide to make the risky move of churning out more episodes, which ends up causing their show to eventually be cancelled before long-running arcs can be resolved. The poster-child of this is The X-Files, another one of my favorite television programs out there. Indeed, the writers for The X-Files had about six opportunities to wrap things up, but each time they decided to keep telling new stories. While The Office just got sort of stale, The X-Files straight-up got bad to the point that I don’t even like thinking about season 9. And when the series ended, none of the mythology made any sense, and the finale was half-assed to the point of embarrassment. Even when the show was given the chance to right past wrongs with the 2016 miniseries, it instead decided to once again muddle the mythology and end things on a cliffhanger.
There are far too many examples to list here of American shows having no/bad endings, but I think I’ve made my point: shows need to be made with an ending in mind, and writers/producers need to know when to close up shop.
This is why I’m so happy that Adventure Time has a finale set.
Now the writers can concentrate on wrapping up previous arcs; they can survey past episodes, find what things need to be finalized, and deliver a finished product that will be met with critical applause and will stand the test of time. Arguably, there is nothing better than a well-executed series finale (e.g. Gravity Falls), and what with all the story arcs that Adventure Time has yet to finalize, I’m thinking that, if the writers put their minds to it, we might be privy to one of the best finales of all time. And I’m not being hyperbolic… I believe this.
Of course, there are hurdles. The writers need to take a good hard look at the show/episodes that they have made, and find those stories that need to be tied up. If, for instance, the Ice King story is ended, but we never hear about Maja and APTWA, I’ll be a little bent out of shape.
Adventure Time has had some issues with handling arcs in the past, so I think this sort of reflection would do the show some real good. And with the added bonus of having an end in sight, there is no need for them to tread water. They can end things with a risky bang.
This post is rather all over the place, but my point is this: I’d rather watch Adventure Time go out on its own terms (a phrase that I think is going to be seriously overused when discussing this show, IMHO) than either crap out and get cancelled without a decent finale or go on indefinitely and turn into Cartoon Network’s equivalent of SpongeBob.
PS: I also hope that Bubbline is officially confirmed.
I can’t wait to work in a mainly white work space so I can be that “cool black person” who everyone ends up copying so I can come out with stupid phrases and terms that they think is cool and ~urban~ and then tell all my friends about later to laugh about