Tigtone has completed his most important quest: finishing his first season!
“Tigtone and the Singing Blade” begins with Tigtone and Helpy standing on a volcano before the King Queen, forcing a singing sword — the Bard Sword — to recant his tale of how he and the young sword-bearer, Daker, stole all the weapons in the kingdom. The Bard Sword sings his story about how he never wanted to be a singing sword — but rather, a killing sword. Daker, a disturbed child, also wanted to use swords, not just bear them. The duo teams up and kills tons of people so that they could build a weapon body for the Bard Sword (to maximize killing.) Tigtone cannot morally fight a child, so he uses a potion to become one himself — but winds up “defeating” Daker without fighting him. Then he turns into a sword to defeat the Sword Bard, but he only has enough potion to turn back into a child. Naturally, Helpy literally raises him back into a man over the course of 20 years, leading to the present. Tigtone throws the Sword Bard into a volcano, ending his trial (and life.)
In Tigtone’s finale, “Tigtone VS. Nothing,” Helpy reveals he’d been collecting magical talismans from all of his and Tigtone’s adventures together, in order to form the all-powerful Jingis (Chingus? Jengis?) Helpy states that his life purpose is to help the greater good, and he does this by using the Jingis’ powers to make the entire world normal and content — meaning, there are no more quests. Feeling betrayed and purposeless, Tigtone calls upon the Crystal Gods to give him a quest, and they reveal to him that “the greater good” is actually a God that Helpy was serving, and that Tigtone must defeat him. Tigtone enters the “nothing” realm and discovers The Greater Good is using Helpy’s body as a life force. Helpy apologizes to Tigtone, instructing him to kill him so that The Greater Good will be vulnerable. Tigtone destroys Helpy with two magic words, and then kills The Greater Good. The Crystal Gods bring Helpy back to life, and the pair goes on to use the Jingis’ powers to create never-ending chaos throughout the world — meaning, endless quests.
We’ve arrived at the end of Tigtone’s first season — and all too soon. It seems like just yesterday that Tigtone was Begun, and now, we must depart from Tigtone and Helpy’s adventures (for now.)
Let’s not get too misty-eyed to review, though: beginning with “Tigtone and the Singing Blade,” this episode was packed with so many comedic punches that it’s impossible to get through without bursting out with laughter. The “singing” element was incorporated extremely well into the dialogue, and it wound up being one of the funniest episode of the season by far. The subtle charm of Tigtone’s comedy writing is exemplified many, many times throughout (such as when the King Queen, Tigtone, and Helpy are all shocked about the weapons of the kingdom going missing, but show no alarm about the dead bodies sprawled about. Also, Sword Bard’s “giant” weapon body not even being giant, Helpy raising Tigtone, etc. We’re not gonna sit here and explain the jokes, just watch it.) John DiMaggio absolutely kills it in this episode.
Then came emotional, high-intensity finale: “Tigtone VS. Nothing.” Helpy’s betrayal was an unforeseen and sensible twist, aligning with a multitude of sidekick betrayals in fantasy games and media (it didn’t hurt any less, though.) Going back to the beginning of the series, the season finale was a high point in Tigtone’s character development. Tigtone choosing Helpy over his sword seemed symbolic of his fondness for friendship over his ego. In a show that dashes from one adventure right into the next — with seldom nods to previous episodes — it was nice to have a bit of reoccurring plot elements (even Festis was there!) This gives hope that not all characters we’ve met are never to be seen again (#BringBackBeconka)
Speaking of future episodes: Adult Swim would have to be crazy not to renew Tigtone for another season. There’s nothing quite like it, and its originality and approach to storytelling and humor is a breath of fresh air when it comes to animated shows. Anyone can take a show and make it about “adventuring” (Adventure Time, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, etc.) but it takes a lot of thought and heart to be able to take that concept and do something new with it. It’s a familiar kind of new — taking the familiarity of the things that we all love, such as D&D, or any fantasy RPG, and creating something entirely original and entertaining.
Whether a viewer is super into fantasy tropes and games or not, Tigtone is truly a show that anyone can watch and feel accessible to. Appealing to the new generation of absurdist humor, the entire creative team of Tigtone has a lot to be proud of, and — if the fates allow it — there will be more to come.
Normal is weak, the Gods are weak — but Tigtone is forever.