Tobin and Coover manage to capture the sense of humor, zaniness, and spirit of Adventure Time right away. I can hear the voices of the characters as I read along and was unable to predict the next encounter that the book would hold. The Flip Side doesn't hold any mind-blowing character explorations or revelations but is good, clean fun focusing on the topic of adventuring. The nonsequiturs had me in stitches, and there's a humor present that works for readers of all ages.
Artist Wook Jin Clark does a great job of imitating the look and feel of the cartoon. There's a lot of physical humor in The Flip Side that Clark delivers well, and the new settings and characters introduced in the comic are incredible. There are a lot of subtle additions to the art that made the humor work. During my subsequent reads, I kept noticing more details every time that added to the story or humor. If I'm going to nitpick, my one complaint with the art is that Finn looks weird. Clark's style errs on the side of realism in places and has the hardest time dealing with the more human-looking characters, making Finn look more creepy - like a deformed, sharp-toothed human and less cute in many panels.
While adventures and quests have always been a big thing in Adventure Time, The Flip Side especially felt like a tribute to video game RPGs with a focus on fetch quests, introducing a job board, and plenty of random encounters for the boys and BMO to fight or think their way through. While this issue is largely setting up the rest of the series, much of it feels like filler. To be sure, it's great filler and establishes that random encounter feel but left me a little dissatisfied by the end. I wanted a little more story and a little less randomness.
Four and a Half Licenses to Get an Adventuring License out of Five