An Exoneration of Adventure Time

Tumblr user Dragon (of thedragonandthefox) has written a response to my touch escalator post, and you should go read it.  Turns out, the full narrative that gifset was pulled from actually rejects the universality of the normative relationship standards of touch progression, creating an interesting analogy and a positive overall message.  So in its complete context, that episode of Adventure Time isn’t really promoting the idea I criticized.

The episode ends with Finn (badly burned) kissing a rock and handing it to Flame Princess, who kisses it back – their own version of the traditional romantic gesture.

What concerns me is that I’ve seen a gifset of Jake’s relationship tier explanation, but I haven’t seen a gifset of the above being passed around.

I mean, I’m sure it exists, out there, somewhere.  It’d be impossible to know everything that gets said or done on the internet.  But why were people gifing that Jake scene and sharing it at all?  Without commentary, except to snicker “children’s show, my ass”?

Call me paranoid, but I think there are people who take the scene at face value (or agree with it regardless), and that’s what I’m worried about.

This is a possibility that Dragon did briefly address in her post.

Unfortunately, there is always the possibility that viewers who aren’t specifically searching for representation or themes won’t see it and only pick up on the concept of the ‘tier system’ that is explicitly stated – this is the trap the Ace Theist, having only seen one gifset, fell into.

Yes, and I appear to be stuck down here.  Somebody want to lend a hand?

Fox adds: It’s interesting to view Finn as a non-touch averse person who’s ok with the relationship as it is – there’s often a lot more complexity in ‘normative’ people than the ace community gives them credit for. That might be an interesting topic for another time.

eeeeeaaaaauuuuuuugggggghhhhhhhhmmmmmmm hmm.  Well.

At this point, if they want any credit back, they’re going to have to earn it.


4 responses to “An Exoneration of Adventure Time

  • Brin

    there’s often a lot more complexity in ‘normative’ people than the ace community gives them credit for.

    …that’s a very…un-complex view of the ace community, isn’t it?

    • acetheist

      That’s one way to put it. They appear to be both new to the community, however (they’re an ace and demi couple) so I’m willing to cut them some slack.

  • Z

    I don’t have as favorable of a reading as Dragon does, but I’ll admit that it may be due to being aromantic because my mind’s kind of stuck on ‘but they still kiss’… it’s not like one doesn’t want kissing, or that they really end up not “moving up” to tier two, or anything really than doing “traditional romance” slightly differently because of physical limitations. It’s even reinforced that kissing is a version of “extreme romance” that Flame Princess can’t handle. Kissing is still set up as more than hugging, more romantic, more important, more of an impact. I guess it’s an improvement over a show not commenting on anything at all though, but the idea of tiers is still there. *shrug*

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