Cartoons come and go, but some of their legacies run deep. Avatar: The Last Airbender ended over 10 years ago, and both the original series and its spin-off sequel have massive fanbases both on and off the web. The franchise has received multiple comic releases, several video games, and a variety of merchandise.
While Adventure Time has a lighter tone, it sparked similar dedication in its fans and creators. Comics, video games, and books have been attached to the cartoon’s wildly successful name, and a film is currently in the works. The show gained massive popularity among children and adults alike, with many viewers growing older alongside the characters.
Its bright color palette and cheerful concept made it ideal for children, but the occasional serious, spooky undertone of the show gave it enough depth to appeal to an older audience. Since debuting on Cartoon Network in 2010, the show has become a household name among animation enthusiasts.
However, all good things have to come to an end, and Adventure Time is finally tying up its 10-season run. According to Variety, the last episode is fittingly titled “Come Along With Me,” named after a lyric from the now-iconic theme song. It will be airing on September 3, over eight years since its premiere. This longevity is impressive, especially for a cartoon that isn’t Spongebob Squarepants.
Like, OH MY GLOB! Can you believe that Adventure Time is ending tomorrow? How has this beloved series impacted you? pic.twitter.com/HS4ufoPhve— IGN (@IGN) September 2, 2018
Adventure Time has a lot to deliver with its finale, especially with the show taking on a more serious, emotional tone in the later seasons.
At one point, it was even revealed that the land of Ooo was really an apocalyptic wasteland — albeit a colorful one. The Ice King, the series’ wacky antagonist, got a heartbreaking backstory. He isn’t evil by nature; he just fell into insanity while trying to protect another member of the cast. Even the main character, Finn, received some serious character development. He found his father, lost his arm, and got his heart broken.
Over the course of the show, Finn grew older alongside the audience, maturing from a 13-year-old boy into a 17-year-old. Even the way he sounded developed as his voice actor began to go through puberty.
With the finale getting closer, it’s hard for long-time fans not to think back and feel nostalgia. Regardless of how long you’ve been watching, showrunner Adam Muto is hoping you will have an emotional experience.
“I do hope [the viewers] feel something — the most I can hope for is that they feel something. Happiness, joy, sadness. I just hope they feel something.”
Adventure Time made a massive splash at conventions around the world, with cosplayers and fan artists devoting themselves to the whimsy and emotional story. It’ll be hard to let it go, definitely, but fans are excited to see what will come next. According to the New York Times, many a career was born from Adventure Time‘s success, and it’s time for their stories to unfold.