Original Airdate: May 17, 2010
Written & Storyboarded by: Bert Youn & Sean Jimenez
Jake tells Finn a spooky “based on a true” story about vampires that really psychs him out. I don’t believe I’ve mentioned this yet, but Finn’s pajamas really psych me out. There’s no way in hell they’re even remotely comfortable, and they must itch a bunch. Finn heads off to bed, but is too scared to sleep, and is intruded on by a worm in his bed. Finn tosses the Enchiridion at it, because that book is only good for killing bugs and sitting on when the grass is wet.
After seeing the shadow of a vampire through his window, Finn rushes downstairs and panics to Jake. Jake calms Finn down by telling him that he made the whole thing up, but just then, Marceline the Vampire Queen pops in! And thus, we have our first appearance of Marcy. Sorta weird how it took 12 episodes to introduce one of the show’s most fleshed out and interesting characters, but here she is! Odd to say, but I especially like the way she’s designed in this episode. She’s wearing the basic gray outfit you see in most promotional pictures and merchandise (ain’t it weird how this is the only episode she wears that shirt?) but there’s something especially fluid and expressive about her movements and facial expressions in this episode. Marceline informs Finn and Jake of all her adventures around Ooo, including riding through a sea of fish in the DAYTIME. You lie, Marcy! Marceline overstays her welcome, however, when she kicks Finn and Jake out and claims that treehouse was her property first. Of course, Finn wants to kick her in the face a little, but Jake’s hella scared of vampires, so the two search for a new home together.
What follows is one of my favorite scenes from AT’s first season: “The House Hunting Song.” The montage is a fast-paced romp, featuring some of the funniest and most absurd parts of the episode; Finn continuously keeps sticking his foot in people’s houses and a frog barfs a tiger, all perfectly ordinary events in the Land of Ooo. What really ties this scene together is Pendleton Ward’s hilarious singing voice. He gives every line of the song a certain umph and really nails every single delivery that the song never grows stale throughout its entirety. In addition, it even helps build Marceline’s character a bit! She’s 1,000 years old and she lost track of her moral code, but she certainly isn’t a villain of any sorts. After losing her closest friend, her jerky boyfriend, her favorite teddy bear and her father figure going completely bananas, I don’t blame her for losing stability in her life. The one small thing that bugs me about the sequence is that it raises the question: why isn’t BMO with the boys?? I know this is before BMO becomes a major character, but it seems like a bit of discontinuity looking at the series now with how close the boys are to their sentient game console.
After that song is done with, we transition into another one where Jake serenades Finn by telling him that home is where the heart is. Obviously Jake isn’t really taking it seriously and is only having fun with it, but it’s a sweet little moment between the two brothers. After finally finding a home inside a cave, F&J decide to throw a rad housewarming party. A party that’s so rad, it raises back Tree Trunks from the dead!
As all the guests party, Marceline enters the boys’ new home and tells F&J that the cave is also her property. Finn’s like, “fuck this, it’s time to kill us a vampire!” Jake reminds Finn that home is where the heart is, which prompts Marcy to try to kidnap Jake. Marceline transforms into that awesome bat form that she has under her sleeve, as her and Finn begin to fight. Marceline grabs Jake once again, and sucks the blood right out of him. Finn is super pissed and punches that literal homewrecker right in the jaw. Marceline is impressed and kisses Finn on the cheek, causing his 12-year-old boyhood to exacerbate. Jake is revealed to have survived because he stuffed all of his guts in his thumb, and Marceline decides to give the boys their house back. Upon returning, Finn and Jake find that their house is infested by worms. The King Worm enters the room and makes Finn and Jake hug him. End of episode.
There’s not a whole lot going on in this episode, to be honest. It’s pretty much just Finn and Jake get kicked out, find another house, fight Marceline and return back home. That being said, I think it’s a really great and fun introduction to Marceline’s character. While she actually doesn’t appear much in this episode, you can clearly tell from her brief appearance that Marceline is a very two-dimensional and layered character, and I really like how Finn and Jake work off of her. Jake is obviously terrified of her, while Finn seems equally scared of her, but more of an “intimidated by a hot girl” sort of way. Aside from that, “The House Hunting” song is really what turns this episode from a good one to a great one, and really is one of the most enjoyable scenes in the entirety of the first season.