It’s hard to believe Adventure Time is in its seventh season, and it’s good to see it shows no signs of slowing down. Not long after the season premiered last year, there was an eight episode story arc that featured the moody and melodious Marceline and her quest to take down some vampires she had got rid of long ago, or so she thought. Cartoon Network has collected these episodes and combined them into a movie of sorts in the Adventure Time: Stakes DVD. These episodes are coupled with some bonus features that make this quite the treat for fans and newcomers to sink their fangs into.
The adventure starts off when Marceline (voiced by Olivia Olson) grows tired of being a vampire and asks Princess Bubblegum (Hynden Walch) for help in finding a cure. Turns out the princess has been working on one for quite some time and it works, but it also releases five of the most vicious vampires the land of Ooo has ever known. There’s the Fool (Ron Funches), Empress Eyes (Rebecca Romijn), the Hierophant (Paul Williams), the Moon (Beau Billingslea), and the Vampire King himself (Billy Brown). Now that Marceline is human, she’ll need the help of Finn and Jake (Jeremy Shada and John DiMaggio), the princess and more in order to take down the vampires and regain her powers.
Needless to say, I enjoyed this eight part special quite a bit, as it features nearly all the reasons why the show is such a hit and why fans love it so much. It has anything and everything you could want, from action and adventure (well it is adventure time, right?), to comedy and drama. I also liked how they included guest stars such as Rebecca Romijn and Paul Williams to voice some of the characters, as they all do a great job here. Another nice bonus was having former storyboard artist Rebecca Sugar (who went off to create another show I’m a fan of, Steven Universe) return to the show to not only write an original song (a catchy and touching piece called “Everything Stays”), but also to voice Marceline’s mom, which is Sugar’s debut as a voice actress and gives viewers a glimpse of a character that Adventure Time fans have longed to see for quite some time.
It would’ve been nice to see this special in high resolution, but the DVD’s audio and visuals are good enough to bring the magic of the series to life. There’s also a few bonuses for viewers to check out after their vampire hunting. A few animatics show off a couple of scenes before they were finished and give a nice look into what goes into making the show. There’s also a song demo that showcases a lovely song and how it grew from there, and finally there’s an art gallery that has a few images from the episodes here that fans will especially enjoy.
The Adventure Time: Stakes DVD is a great watch for both fans of the series and those who want to see what the hullabaloo is about. These eight episodes capture what makes the show so awesome while also throwing in a few pleasant surprises along the way. Fans and newcomers will want to stake themselves a copy and hang on for the wild ride that is Adventure Time.