Adventure Time (initially titled as Adventure Time with Finn and Jake; still used in the related merchandise) is an American animated television series created by Pendleton Ward and produced by Frederator Studios for Cartoon Network. The series focuses on the surreal adventures undertaken by two best friends, Finn the human boy and Jake the dog with magical powers, who dwell in the Land of Ooo. The series is based on a short produced for Frederator's Nickelodeon animation incubator series Random! Cartoons. After the short became a viral hit on the Internet, Cartoon Network picked it up for a full-length series that had a preview on March 11, 2010 and officially premiered on April 5, 2010. The series has been a critical and commercial success, receiving generally positive reviews. This series is rated TV-PG.
Following the animated short, Frederator Studios pitched an Adventure Time series to Nickelodeon, but the network passed on it twice. The studio then approached Cartoon Network, with creator Pendleton Ward delivering them an early storyboard for "The Enchiridion", showing that the premise could be expanded into a series while maintaining elements from the original short: funny catchphrases and dances, an awkward kiss moment with the princess and an "Abe Lincoln moment". Cartoon Network greenlit the first season in September 2008, and "The Enchiridion" would become the first produced episode.
Series creator Pendleton Ward has stated that the artistic style is influenced by his time at CalArts and later working as a storyboard artist on The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack. He tries to include "beautiful" moments like those in Hayao Miyazaki's My Neighbor Totoro and some subversive humor, inspired by series like The Simpsons and Pee-wee's Playhouse. Executive producer Fred Seibert compares the show's animation style to that of Felix the Cat and the Max Fleischer cartoons but says its world is also equally inspired by Dungeons and Dragons and video games. Ward intends the show's world to have a certain physical logic instead of "cartoony slapstick" — even though magic exists in the story, the show's writers try to create an internal consistency in how the characters interact with the world.
Many of the series' writers and storyboard artists have a background in indie comics. Pendleton Ward refers to them as "really smart, smartypants people" who are responsible for inserting weirder and more spiritual ideas into the series during its third season.
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