The first episode of the eight-part miniseries Adventure Time: Elements is “Skyhooks,” in which our heroes return to Ooo, only to find everything and everyone has been turned into candy. Yawn. Same old, same old.
At least, that’s the approach Jake takes, figuring they have just wandered into yet another parallel dimension. BMO, meanwhile, thinks that all the candy-things and candy-people are a marked improvement on the old versions. Finn, always the most suspicious of the trio, is less certain. Everyone they come across seems blissfully happy, from the previously cruel, still-screechy Lemongrab, to the no longer uncertain Fern. (And man, poor Fern. Seems like he’s doomed to spend the entirety of his existence being unknowingly possessed by one force or another.) The only person who appears to have escaped the possession is Sweetpea — and isn’t there something ironic about the reincarnation of the Lich, the personification of nuclear armageddon, now being the sole survivor of another kind of apocalypse? It is honestly uncomfortable to see him so scared, forced to continuously run away from his brainwashed parents to avoid being absorbed himself.
The Tower is simultaneously an embodiment of everything Princess Bubblegum wanted to accomplish, and all her worst traits manifested. Finally, she has found a way to protect all her subjects and give them complete happiness — but she did it at the cost of all their privacy and free will. She can have Marceline at her side, the two of them finally completely devoted to one another… but without any of the sharp personality that would have attracted them to each other in the first place. (That said: Marshmaline is so cute I want to hug like twenty).
Even considering her tactics of non consensual assimilation, it seems likely that Bonnie is herself a victim here. That Patience St. Pym did something to her and the other elementals which forced them to go out of control. It was clearly in Patience’s plan for Princess Bubblegum to unlock the full potential of her candy elemental powers, as seen in “Jelly Beans Have Power.” What happened between then and “Skyhooks,” that made Peebubs go Full Totalitarian on her subjects?
Luckily, at least for Finn and Jake, Ice King is there to save the day with his skyhooks (an unusual sequence of words, but Simon’s arc has never been normal). Considering “Skyhooks” is the title of both the first and final episodes in the miniseries, there could be more to them than being mere tools; time will tell.
Although she featured prominently in the new Elements title sequence, Betty wasn’t around in this episode… Simon is still wearing his crown, and his continued muttering about the skyhooks doesn’t suggest Betty’s attempts at curing his madness worked all that well. He is not wearing the crown in the intro, though — perhaps he will finally be freed from its clutches over the course of the miniseries? Ice King shakes the chains of magic-madness-sadness, while Princess Bubblegum becomes more deeply ensnared?
And speaking of the new title sequence, how appropriate, that it’s Peebub’s voice singing the intro, but not her personage, like some Terrifying Tower Puppetmaster. Oh my butt, indeed.
Author: KK Bracken & Laura B
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