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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled iAdventure Time/i: “All Your Fault”
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The Earl of Lemongrab was the stand-out character of last week’s “Mystery Dungeon,” but this week’s episode proves that a little Lemongrab goes a long way, and too much crosses the border from delightfully weird to exceedingly grating. When Princess Bubblegum receives a letter from Castle Lemongrab saying that all its inhabitants are going hungry, she sends Finn and Jake on a royal mission to deliver candy seeds that can be planted and harvested to make new food, but she has no idea how bad things have gotten over in Lemongrab. Finn hops on Jake’s back, and they ride off to the Castle. When they arrive, they’re greeted by a kingdom of starving, deformed Lemons with no Earl in sight.

This episode shows off this series’ occasionally grotesque design sense, especially when Finn and Jake enter Lemongrab and encounter all the mutated Lemon people. There’s a weird Lemonsnail, multiple rabid Lemoncanines, and lots of Lemonblobs lying around, hungry for candy and/or Finn and Jake’s flesh. Jake turns his hand into a piece of cake and pretends to throw it, giving our heroes a chance to make a run for it into the castle where they encounter Lemon John, a giant living wall who fills them in on what’s going on in the typical Lemon fashion: yelling a bunch of nonsense with occasional bits of information. It turns out that the Earl and his partner have been locked in a dungeon for three weeks, so Finn and Jake go looking for them, encountering a series of increasingly bizarre visuals as they make their way through.


As Finn and Jake explore the dungeon, they find various massive organs behind doors, including a heart, guts, and lungs. The lung room is especially creepy, as a tiny Lemon creature sits on the floor and screeches while slowly turning its head, then peels its skin off. This episode is really just a series of non-sequiturs thrown out in rapid succession, while a whole lot of yelling goes down. When Finn and Jake finally find the Earl and his partner, they’re in a prison of their own creation, holed up to protect themselves from the Lemon beasts that they created with Princess Bubblegum’s formula for creating candy life.

The candy that PB left them was never consumed, but given life, and the Earl tells Finn and Jake, “I’m a guy who can’t stop making candy life from the food he needs.” The last bit of candy was turned into the blob (Plop-Top or maybe Tum-Dum) sitting on the table, and when Finn and Jake give the Earl the new batch of candy seeds, he combines them and administers the candy life formula, turning Lemongrab’s only salvation into the latest vomiting mutant mass. I have no idea what this episode is about. Is it a veiled allegory for overpopulation? Abuse of environmental resources?

With no hope in sight, the Earl decides to march on the Candy Kingdom, steal more candy, bring it to life, and create a giant army that he can use to amass more candy. So maybe “All Your Fault” is about the way rulers abuse their power in the name of expansion, ultimately bringing about the destruction of everything. Lemon John transforms into a giant that marches on the Candy Kingdom while Finn and Jake dangle from his body, and Finn remembers that they saw all those vital organs in the dungeon and realizes that they can probably stop the rampaging Lemon monster by punching its heart until it’s history. Their punching ends up giving Lemon John a newfound sense of empathy, and it becomes so conflicted over hurting the Candy people and helping the starving Lemon people that it just explodes into a giant mass of lemon candy.

The episode ends with PB erasing her living candy formula from the brains of the Earl and his partner, but when Finn asks her if they should mess with their hearts to gives them a sense of compassion like Lemon John, PB says, “Their hearts are fine; they’re just like this.” That’s probably going to be something she’ll regret in the future, because the Lemongrabs are completely insane. Insanity is fun in small doses but this episode feels unfocused, going to show that just because some members of this show’s supporting cast are entertaining, taking a gimmick too far can be detrimental to the story.


Stray observations:

  • Poor Cinnamon Bun thinks he has a girlfriend when Jake turns himself into a lumpy blob and has a picnic with him.
  • I love the animation when Jake jumps out of PB’s window with Finn on his back and grows wings to glide to the ground. The animation in this episode is really sharp in general.
  • I really want some Lemonheads right now.
  • “Does your head come to a nub?”
  • “Nooo cruuumbs.”
  • “Giant poison candy aspirin. I’ve got this one, but it might be too small.”
  • “Tastes like vitamins.”

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