In the beginning of the episode, Finn is in the Candy Kingdom on a "date" with 13-year-old Princess Bubblegum. Finn calls Jake, who is at the Tree Fort playing a game on BMO. Jake gives Finn some advice for his date and then hangs up to continue his video game. Princess Bubblegum asks Finn to test an instant bath serum that makes the user sweat cleaning agents. However, it ends up being unbearably spicy. Afterwards, Manfried the Talking Pinata announces the Arrival of the Earl of Lemongrab, who arrives on his Lemon Camel, believes that the Candy Kingdom is in "unacceptable condition," and asserts that he will take control of the Candy Kingdom until the princess turns 18 again because she is "too young" to rule the kingdom. Though Finn protests, Lemongrab apparently has this right. Being the creation of Princess Bubblegum from a failed experiment, he assumes the right as the next heir to the throne, having been created for the sole purpose of fulfilling royal duties if Princess Bubblegum herself became unable to do so. A high-strung, strict, overzealous, and true to his name and shape, sour individual, he sentences members of the castle staff to the dungeon with little to no provocation. Finn and Princess Bubblegum realize that because Lemongrab is rightful ruler, they must get him to leave the Candy Kingdom of his own accord, and attempt a series of pranks to make him leave.
The first involves making an intricate machine that lowers an insulting sign for the Earl to read upon waking from his nap, which reads, "You really smell like dog buns." The Earl overreacts to this prank immensely, gathering together all of the Castle Staff and screaming at them to reveal the culprit of the "thing" (the prank). When Peppermint Butler informs Lemongrab that the "thing" was just a prank for laughs, Lemongrab attempts to laugh at it, but fails and sends Peppermint Butler to the dungeon for 12 years, and everyone else for 7 years with no trials. After seeing that the first prank did not work, Princess Bubblegum becomes disheartened, but Finn reassures her that they just need to keep at it, and devises a new prank. They disguise themselves as ghosts, approach Lemongrab in a hallway, punch him in the gut, and knock him to the ground. Even though Lemongrab cries after this prank, he tries to laugh it off and vows to not leave the Candy Kingdom. With Lemongrab not showing any signs of wanting to leave, they run to one of the castle's roofs where Finn devises another prank: dripping the spicy serum from earlier onto his meal and into whatever he tries to soothe the burning with. The Princess accepts the idea, not without flirting with him by sighing and relaxing on his body, which makes him blush and sigh, too. Having released Peppermint Butler from the dungeon early because of his lack of knowledge of where food comes from, Finn and Princess Bubblegum hide in the ceiling of Lemongrab's room and prepare to drip the potion onto Lemongrab's meal, but Princess Bubblegum's aim is off and accidentally drips the potion into Peppermint Butler's eye, causing him to scream in pain. Princess Bubblegum tries again, this time hitting the food (a plate of mashed carrots), and upon eating it, Lemongrab turns red, vomits, screams in agony, and falls out the window.
Upon crashing into the ground, he tries to soothe his mouth by eating the chocolate dirt, but Princess Bubblegum drips another drop of potion straight into his mouth, resuming the spiciness. Lemongrab hurries out into the forest and tries to grab an apple to placate his searing mouth, but grabs an apple from the branch that Finn, Princess Bubblegum, and Peppermint Butler are sitting on, causing Peppermint Butler to fall straight into Lemongrab's mouth, effectively cooling it. Upon seeing who is responsible for the spice-bombing prank, he sentences Finn and Princess Bubblegum to "One million years dungeon!" Inside the dungeon, along with the rest of the castle staff, Finn tries to devise a new prank ("Hmm... Maybe if we.. set his butt on fire?"), but Princess Bubblegum realizes the only way to get Lemongrab out of the kingdom is to become 18 again and take back the throne, despite enjoying being a kid again. Finn appears to be saddened by her decision, but understands that there is no other way to save the Candy Kingdom. Princess Bubblegum then conveys that she needs candy flesh to increase her biomass back to that of an 18-year old. The Candy People graciously pitch in and offer parts of themselves for her use. Finn provides the "binding agent" with his saliva.
Finishing the process, Finn and Princess Bubblegum are ready to catalyze the pieces with the heat of a "whopping love-hug." Just before they do, Princess Bubblegum tells Finn she really enjoyed hanging out with him, and regrets having to re-age by saying: "And I... I wish I could stay, like this, with you, but...." As they hug, they share their first mutual kiss. Now 18 again, Princess Bubblegum kicks Lemongrab out of the kingdom and reclaims her throne with the words "Yo, Earl! Hey, you're fired, ya' butt!" In the end, Finn and Princess Bubblegum watch Lemongrab leave the Candy Kingdom on his Lemon Horse, mumbling angrily to himself. Finn nervously asks Princess Bubblegum for another hug, but she jokingly reminds him that that was "five years ago." Finn is greatly disappointed, and calls Jake, who comforts him with advice conceived from his exploits from the videogame he was playing, saying:
"It's not easy, but you have to be persistent. You might have to defeat a demon lord, or warp through several worlds. But once you do, you walk up the wizard stairs, and produce your magic key you got in the water world and unlock the chamber door. Then, you walk right up to the princess, and give her a smooch... Does that make sense?"
The episode ends with Finn looking up to see a distant Princess Bubblegum in a high tower in the castle as he thinks of walking up to her, repeating the part of Jake's words about the wizard stairs.
- Candy People
- BMO (Cameo)
- This episode was nominated for an Emmy in 2012 for the category of Outstanding Short-Format Animated Program, though it did not win.
- Princess Bubblegum does not require a specific type of candy flesh to revert to her real age, as she uses pieces from all different types of Candy People.
- Part of the prank machine is a blue-green PHIL FACE.
- The room in which Lemongrab is seen eating is partly painted and filled with boxes, probably due to Lemongrab moving in.
- This episode is seen in the show Parenthood in All Aboard Who's Coming Aboard, The M Word and the movie Non Stop (2014).
- The prank machine is a form of Rube Goldberg machine; an overly-complex apparatus that performs a simple task.
- The music that plays during the "prank machine" scene is re-used in the episode "Card Wars," during the scene in which Jake explains the rules of the game to Finn.
- At the end of the episode the music from "The Chamber of Frozen Blades" when Finn and Jake are in the Ice King's hamper can be heard.
- This episode is the continuation of "Mortal Recoil," thus completing the series' first 3-part story arc.
- In the part of the episode where Lemongrab asks Peppermint Butler where food comes from, Peppermint Butler replies, "My lord, food comes from Mars-" before Lemongrab yells and cuts him off. This may refer to Glob, which was stated by Finn to be a deity in "No One Can Hear You" and seen in Mars in "Sons of Mars."
- When Finn finishes attaching all the candy pieces to increase Princess Bubblegum's body mass, the spelling of "Hug me" becomes "Tug me" on one of the candy people's body.
- When Lemongrab grabs an apple from the tree, some of the apples are not shaped correctly.
- Princess Bubblegum drops two spicy agent drippings from the serum that she made, but when the scene turns to Lemongrab, it shows that only one drop of the spicy agent from the serum comes out and then falls into Lemongrab's mouth.
- When Princess Bubblegum is creating Lemongrab the potion on the table is green, but when she grabs it, it is red. This, however, could have to do with the experiment's failure.
- The snail appears in its normal, non-possessed form in this episode.
- When Lemongrab is explaining that he is next in line for the throne, Mr. Candy Cane (who normally has green stripes) is shown with red stripes.
- When licking the chunks of candy flesh together, Finn licks one corner of a purple chunk, but attaches it to the mass of candy by a different corner.
- Young Princess Bubblegum was not wearing shoes. After she recovered her real age and was sitting outside the castle with Finn, she gets up to enter the castle and it sounds as if she is wearing high heels.
- An alternate version of the title card shows young Princess Bubblegum and Finn about to kiss.
- Princess Bubblegum claims that something went wrong during the creation of Lemongrab, but she never revoked his authority in the Candy Kingdom or his right to the throne.
- This episode shows that Princess Bubblegum's age is based on her mass, not the length of her life. If she was originally eighteen, changing what age she appeared to be would not actually change the fact that she is eighteen.
This episode was censored in some countries. See Censorship of Adventure Time for more information.
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