Considering it’s currently one of my favorite shows, it’s about time that I got around to writing about Rick and Morty. I came to the show slightly late in the game, after the second season had finished. But I kept hearing about an irreverent cartoon involving a mad scientist, his grandson and interdimensional space travel. Add to that the fact that it’s most definitely for adults and I had to give it a shot.
The most difficult thing at the time was that I couldn’t find the show anywhere to watch! For whatever reason, there were no episodes on demand or any reruns. I could have paid for an episode or bought a dvd on Amazon, but I didn’t know if I’d like it so I wasn’t about to put out any money for it. Finally, as rumors of the impending third season began to surface (seriously, the show has one of the worst production schedules around), Adult Swim started showing episodes. I watched one and wanted more!
So aside from the obvious appeal of interdimensional travel plots, what is it about Rick and Morty that I like? Well first off, it’s not a shiny, happy, everything works out in the end sitcom sort of cartoon. The show is dark – Rick is a verbally abusive, depressed alcoholic who just happens to be the most intelligent person in the universe, Morty is an insecure klutz who’s not all that smart, Summer is a bitch of a sister and Beth and Jerry are inattentive, self-absorbed parents headed for a divorce. Morty is seldom in school because Rick keeps taking him along on “adventures” where he just about gets killed almost every time.
Then there’s the universe of the show itself. It’s not just one Rick and one Morty travelling around – there are a multitude of Ricks and Mortys, with the show focusing on “the Rickest Rick” and the best Morty. There’s something called the Citadel of Ricks, where other Ricks and Mortys live everyday lives, while the panel of Ricks tries to come up with ways to finally rid themselves of the Rickest of Ricks. It’s not as absurd as it may sound – there are a lot of issues regarding identity, self-awareness, being an individual when everyone is the same. Seriously, this show gets deep with the questions.
And one of the best aspects of the show is the science. Sure, there are completely fictional aliens and organisms and planets and gadgets – but there’s also legitimate science. Most of Rick’s experiments and creations have a basis in actual scientific theory or practice. The most obvious example is multiverse theory – with all the interdimensional travel there are multiple alternate universe ideas addressed. There’s concentrated dark matter as the fuel for Rick’s ship, gene splicing and chemical reactions… there’s even an entire episode involving Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle (“A Rickle in Time”).
Rick and Morty is a show for the geekiest of geeks, those into science fact and fiction. It makes you think about things you may not want to ponder, but it’s so in your face you can’t escape it. And there are times when it’s just absurd in the best way. So grab a portal gun and get riggity, riggity wrecked, son!