I get the feeling the show accidentally created a new standard with season 4’s “I Remember You”, season 5’s premier and “Simon and Marcy”
It was the first time the mushroom war had been mentioned by a main character, it established a connection with Ice King and Marceline. What was usually a silly show, gave us a heartache that no other children’s cartoon in recent years ever had.
Then right after, the season finale “The Lich” was intense, Billy died. Finn attacked PB, then the end of the episode was a huge shock.
Season 5’s premier was spectacular, introducing a fascinating and fun character like Prismo, taking the already established Simon and Marcy bond, they show us that in this alternate timeline/universe, It was heartbreaking to see Ice King’s corpse and know old Marceline never left his side. Ice Finn’s transformation, the mushroom bomb going off. Jake turning into the Lich.
Man, that was just amazing. I remember being so invested when it first aired.
Just 3 months into 2013, Simon and Marcy airs, a story taking place in the horror that was the post apocalypse, the tragedy of Simon Petrikov and the love he and Marceline shared. It had an impact, it was meaningful, fresh and new.
I thought the show was going somewhere, we all felt it was promising something great...
It didn’t happen.
AT never quite lived up this new standard, people expected the show to be able to continue addressing the lore/plot but the AT crew didn’t seem interested in doing that or they couldn’t replicate its quality, who knows.
People felt baited, frustrated, that the storylines they got so invested in (Simon, the Lich, the crown, alternate realities, etc) were being neglected and Season 6 was the straw that broke the camel’s back.