This summer season, months right into a reputedly endless pandemic, Journey Time lovers gained a welcome get away from truth: a go back to Pendleton Ward’s cool animated film international of post-apocalyptic myth. HBO Max’s four-part Journey Time spin-off, Far away Lands, kicked off in June with an interstellar episode enthusiastic about tiny robotic BMO (Niki Yang). Helmed by means of manufacturer Adam Muto, the premiere is zany and chock-full of Journey Time’s signature depression. However it’s most commonly self-contained, and it doesn’t give a contribution a lot to the sequence’ overarching personality lore. It looks like a amusing pit forestall on learn how to a extra vital vacation spot.
The second one episode, Obsidian, after all arrives there. Targeted on Marceline the Vampire Queen (Olivia Olson) and Princess Bubblegum (Hynden Walch) now not lengthy after the unique sequence finale, Journey Time: Far away Lands – Obsidian supplies the emotional payoff and solutions that lovers were craving for.
[Ed. note: some spoilers ahead for Adventure Time: Distant Lands – Obsidian.]
Obsidian starts in uncharted territory: The Glass Kingdom. However throughout the first short time, it turns into transparent how this far away land and its electorate are compatible into Journey Time’s central narrative. In a ritual retelling, See-Via Princess explains that her kingdom lived in peace ahead of dragon Molto Larvo descended upon the land, “gunking it up” together with his hearth. Worlds collide because the target market learns it was once Marceline who rescued the group from the monster with the facility of a music, beating him again into The Furnace, a molten pit deep inside a mountain. All the way through this every year rite commemorating Molto’s defeat, the Glass other folks exalt “Saint Marceline” and sing her holy music (which has change into a garbled mess over the centuries) to stay the beast at bay.
After the birthday party ends, Glass Boy (Michaela Dietz), an outcast and Marceline superfan, breaks into the dragon’s lair, making an attempt to mend the crack on his head within the flames of The Furnace. Molto breaks unfastened, and Glass Boy units off to seek out Marceline, who he believes can save the Glass Kingdom once more.
The majority of the 45-minute particular makes use of the Glass Kingdom plot as a backdrop for an exploration of the Vampire Queen’s adolescence trauma, her romantic historical past with Princess Bubblegum, and the way the 2 intertwine. Via a lot of flashbacks (time is an phantasm that is helping issues make sense), Obsidian after all fills within the gaps about Marceline’s previous: What came about to her mom? Why did she and Princess Bubblegum get a divorce? What does any of this need to do with the Glass Kingdom?
Obsidian isn’t as offbeat as BMO, nevertheless it’s heavier in plot and emotional weight. All the way through the particular, the intensity of Marceline’s trauma turns into transparent, and explanations for her guarded, standoffish demeanor start to disclose themselves. In a specifically heart-wrenching scene, a tender Marceline and her mother are attacked by means of a mutated wolf and her puppy whilst touring in the course of the wasteland. Marci offers with the issue, however her mom is horrified, foreshadowing the grim long term audience know is in retailer for the Vampire Queen.
With regards to PB and Marceline’s courting, the display after all fleshes out backstory that was once alluded to, however by no means totally tested all over the sequence’ preliminary run. Although the “Bubbline” courting was once formally showed within the Journey Time sequence finale, this retroactive exposition comes off as an try to make up for previous equivocation concerning the characters’ sexuality and accusations of queerbaiting. As the hole credit flash, audience are introduced glimpses of Princess Bubblegum and Marceline’s idyllic home lifestyles — they’re proven development a cupboard, ingesting tea (PB, fittingly, sips out of a mug that claims “BOSS.”), making apple pie. Via those smooth, intimate scenes, the episode’s writers make it very transparent that the romantic subtext between Princess Bubblegum and Marceline has at all times been straight-up textual content.
However now not all interactions between the fan-favorite WLW send are loving. Within the particular, as in the principle sequence, Marceline and PB butt heads. The Vampire Queen continues to be bratty and far away; Princess Bubblegum is a know-it-all with troubling dictatorial dispositions. Within the episode “Come Together with Me,” the couple after all rode off into the sundown in combination, a solution hard-won by means of the patience of lovers and creator Rebecca Sugar. However Obsidian reminds audience that the “satisfied finishing” is the place the actual paintings starts — the rewarding, introspective hard work required to make a courting remaining.
Obsidian has its flaws. The particular’s construction and storytelling units are standard by means of Journey Time requirements: Glass Boy’s combat for acceptance and therapeutic mirrors Marceline’s, whilst See-Via Princess’s need to be taken significantly as a ruler parallels PB’s inner most lack of confidence. The Glass Kingdom citizens’ preoccupation with cracks of their glass does heavy metaphorical lifting in an episode about brokenness and trauma. (The particular is named “Obsidian,” in the end.) Glass Boy is goodhearted, however grating. And in a couple of Glass Kingdom scenes, there are inconsistencies in Princess Bubblegum’s personality design.
However Obsidian continues to be efficient and heartfelt. The particular has its offbeat moments (like a odd connection with the mythical “Cool S”), and various wonder appearances from acquainted Ooo citizens, including quintessential Journey Time levity to a meditative, weighty episode. A cameo from Simon Petrikov (Tom Kenny), geared up in his previous blue gown, a toy crown, and Gunther slippers whilst sticking his face in a freezer “to manage,” is especially humorous. As anticipated for a unique centering on Ooo’s most important punk-rock vampire, Obsidian comes with numerous superb new tune, from a blistering break-up shredder to an acoustic love music.
Within the Journey Time finale, Shermy (Sean Giambrone) and Beth (Willow Smith) ask BMO what came about to the heroes of the Nice Gum Struggle. They reply, “They saved residing their lives.” The second one episode of Far away Lands depicts simply this: Marceline and Princess Bubblegum residing, studying to just accept each and every different’s flaws, turning into higher, and, in fact, saving the sector. Obsidian is all of the extra romantic and enjoyable for this messiness. Marci and Bonnie don’t obtain a fairy-tale finishing, they earn one thing higher—a shared long term that feels actual.
Journey Time: Far away Lands – Obsidian is streaming on HBO Max now.