Have you ever been watching an episode of Adventure Time and started to feel like you’re losing your mind? Now imagine being in that universe all day, every day. That’s what Pendleton Ward has been doing since he created “the trippiest show on television” three years ago.
Unbeknownst to fans until this Rolling Stone profile hit yesterday, Pen Ward quit the show in the middle of the current season.
“I quit because it was driving me nuts,” Ward says. Ward was tired of managing an empire that’s produced a show with 14 million weekly viewers, tons of video games, comics and merchandise. “For me, having quality of life outweighed the need to control this project and make it great all the time,” he said.
Ward has handed the reins over to his fellow CalArts alumni Adam Muto and decided to stay on doing storyboards and writing at his own pace.
I’ve definitely noticed a change in the show that others have echoed, but we chalked it up to the characters getting older, which is a rarity in animated kids’ shows. As it turns out, the change is probably Muto’s sensibility becoming more prominent.
Fans of Ward can at least take solace in the knowledge that he still wants to write a movie and create an original video game. “Whatever the next thing is, I just want my brain to be happy doing it,” he says. Yes Pen, take care of your brain, rest up, and come back. (Image: Adventure Time Wikia)