Last modified on 23 December 2020, at 16:10

Rick and Morty

Custom Lego Rick and Morty.jpg

Rick and Morty is an award winning, humorous zany (although sometimes crude, or seldomly not crude) animated TV program that was created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon, is produced by the organizations Williams Street, Harmonious Claptrap, Starburns Industries, Justin Roiland's Solo Vanity Card Productions, Rick and Morty LLC, and Green Portal Productions, and came out in 2013.[1] Science fiction elements of the show include time travel, inter-dimensional travel, alien planets, extraterrestrials, Meeseeks boxes (which generate a creature that will perform the desired task and then disappear), intelligence boxes, inter-dimensional cable, gene splicing, and more. Many of these elements conflict with Christian teachings, such as inter-dimensional travel; none of the extra dimensions featured in the show, such as Buttworld, are featured in the Genesis creation account featured in the Bible. The show could be understood as a parable warning of the dangers of modern science (evolution, relativity, quantum mechanics, string theory, multiverse, etc), as all of the fantastic gadgets and adventures Rick plans often make the Smith household, and the world, worse places. Rick rarely if ever takes responsibility for his own actions. Although Rick is exceptionally intelligent, he lacks wisdom and ethics, and is a poor role model for children, teenagers, and adults for that matter. An earlier show, The Real Animated Adventures of Doc and Mharti, created by Justin Roiland, loosely inspired by characters from Back to the Future, served as a precursor to this one; it ran for four episodes on Channel 101, founded by Dan Harmon (beware, the show is MUCH more vulgar than Rick and Morty). The show has created a large and passionate fanbase, which has created shortages of szechaun sauce at McDonald's and started a petition to create a Rick and Morty feature film, and have stampeded to several internet websites to discuss their favorite show, including at Reddit and TV Tropes. Viewers have continued to proclaim the news about the show to their friends from the rooftops, which increases the audience of the show, raising the rates to advertise on the show, making it more likely for more episodes to be ordered. Some critics have become fed up with some of the fan's antics, including members of the show's own staff [2]. It is an opinion of many fans that the show is too politically correct. Some fans believe that the character Rick is a genius who should be idolized and others think he should not. A particularly vocal portion of the fandom believes that a viewer must possess a considerable intellect and a deep grasp of theoretical physics, world philosophy and science fiction literature, and believe that anyone who dislikes the show is simply not intelligent enough; the Rick and Morty fanbase has a significant disagreement with the Futurama fanbase over which show is more intelligent. Fans of the show come from all over the political spectrum, although a particularly vocal portion are techno-libertarians. Some animation experts have called Rick and Morty the most influential animated show since The Simpsons first aired. The show is available on the leftist streaming service Hulu (which is available at three separate plans, with Classic at $5.99 a month, No Ads at $11.99 a month, or Hulu + Live TV at $54.99 a month, There are many other shows in addition to films on the service) or on DVD, in addition to the first run and rerun live broadcasts.[3] The show stars an intelligent yet acerbic grandfather together with his more average grandson, who go on several misadventures together aided by Rick's inventions.[4] The pair live with other family members, including Jerry Beth and Summer. In addition to the four seasons already out, which will be followed by 60 additional episodes, which may be included in seasons with higher episode counts, there have been three televised specials taking place in alternative scenarios, such as an Australian Smith-Sanchez family, not to mention several other miscellaneous oddities. R&M has also inspired comic books, Dungeons and Dragons roleplaying game supplements, video games, a pinball table, DLC for other video games as well as licensed Monopoly and Clue games. Rick andd Morty have also lent their talents to the advertising sector, appearing in promotions for such esteemed brands as Alien, Wendy's, Pringles, and the Sony PlayStation 5, helping to entrench that console's grip over the higher end video gaming industry (the only home PlayStation console that failed to outsell its competitors was the Playstation 3); these segments are quite similar in format to the regular show, except much shorter and more constrained in subject matter. The show is available in both censored and uncensored versions, depending on the source. During the off season, Mr. Roiland draws the show Solar Opposites. [5] There has been no word as of yet whether the characters Korvo, Terry, Jesse, Yumyulak, the Pupae or any other Solar Opposites character will appear on Rick and Morty; this would be relatively easy to fit in the story given the nature of the setting, but rights issues or the opinion of the writers may intervene.

The show's crossover with ultraliberal agitpropers the Simpson's during a couch gag proves that the show is at least accepting of Democratic political ideas, values, and talking points(the Springfield Republican Party made its headquarters in a gothic castle, with accompanying ominous lighting and thunder, and the chairman is none other than C Montgomery Burns, a cruel plutocratic businessman who uses attack dogs to enforce the length of his employee's lunch breaks. Before The Simpsons aired in 1989, Republicans had won the last 4 out of 5 Presidential Elections; since then Republicans have won the popular presidential vote only once before Trump.) Expies of Christian megatoons Larry the Tomato and Bob the Cucumber (they of the hit video series Veggietales) drop by during one episode, to derision over their show's production values and quality. The portmanteau character Abrodolph Lincoler, combining the first Republican President of the United States with one of the most infamous far left dictators in history, will not endear the show to conservatives either. However, when Rick encounters a problem or difficulty, he never asks intergalactic bureaucrats or officials for a handout; he rolls up his sleeves and generates his own solution using his own faculties, leaning on his grandson Morty and other friends for help. Rick will not stop at anything to guarantee his and his family's safety during an adventure. The adult oriented content in the show would indicate a socially liberal editorial stance. Some pastors have deemed the show anti-Christian, anti-family, and anti-American [6], contrary to the standing ovations the series has received from agnostic critics. The Parents Television Council has criticized the show for its adult content; its home channel was found to have the most mature content out of the sample, which included several television networks, and was accused of marketing adult animation to children [7]. Christian conservative right-wing Republicans who display interest in the show may be better served by the comparatively more family friendly show Futurama or The Simpsons instead.


Characters

  • Rick

A lunatic researcher whose exploits power the plot of the series. He frequently coerces Morty into joining him on his numerous misadventures, which has caused tension between the pair before. He is constantly inventing new technologies straight from the world of soft science-fiction, such as a portal gun and intelligence devices. Although a widely celebrated genius, his caustic personality and disregard for authority has left him with more than a few detractors. As the series has progressed, it has become apparent that his liberal values eventually leave him isolated and miserable despite his genius allowing him to accomplish virtually anything he desires. His frequent use of profanity seems to have influenced his daughter and subsequently the rest of the Smith family, which had to be censored for the initial airing. However, he still disdains the inter-dimensional bureaucracy, even the ones created by separate versions of himself; the regulations they attempt to enforce hobble his ability to do as he pleases and conduct himself on his adventures that he planned himself, not some distant unelected galactic bureaucrat. He disdains the education system, and discourages Morty from paying more attention to his studies, which he frequently misses. He has spiky blue hair, a unibrow that is also blue, and wears a white lab coat, a blue undershirt, green trousers and black sneakers (paired with white socks). He uses the drug alcohol fairly frequently, which does no wonders for his hygiene, as he frequently drools and belches. Rick is the distant father of Beth, the reluctant son-in-law of Jerry, and the rambunctious grandfather of Morty and Summer.[8]

  • Morty

A timid high-school freshman frequently facilitating Rick's schemes, to the detriment of his school performance. Has an unrequited romantic interest in his fellow classmate Jessica. Although nowhere near the scientific prowess of his ancestor, he is still invaluable in the pair's escapades. He could be understood as a symbol of the political center, which is often hijacked by Democrats (or other left wing parties for that matter globally, such as the United Kingdom's Labour Party) as a weapon against conservative ideas and projects. Although Morty occasionally tries to reign in his grandfather, Rick is clearly the dominant member of the pair.

  • Beth

Rick's jaded, unhappily married daughter, who is employed as a successful horse surgeon.

  • Jerry

Morty's hapless, bumbling father. Is frequently the target of jokes and derision of other family members, who has had a mediocre career at best as an adman.

  • Summer

Beth's daughter, who is well adjusted for a member of the Smith household, who occasionally accompanies the pair.

Recap

Spoiler warning
This article contains important plot information

Season 1 (2013) "Pilot" - Rick moves into his daughter's homes and quickly employs Morty as an assistant, raising tensions with both Beth and Jerry and lowering Morty's school attendance and performance. First aired 2 December 2013. 1.1 M viewers. Directed by Justin Roiland, written by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon.

"Lawnmower Dog" - Rick uses an intelligence device to improve the intellect of the family dog, which goes about as well as you would expect. Morty and Rick attempt to influence the mind of Morty's mathematics teacher, Goldenfold, by entering his mind in sleep, reminiscent of the 2010 Nolan directed science fiction film Inception, where they find that dream worlds of teachers are much more dangerous than they may at first appear... First aired 9 December 2013. 1.51 M Viewers. Directed by John Rice, written by Ryan Ridley.

"Anatomy Park" - Rick and Morty attempt to save the life of a homeless man by opening a theme park inside his body, where guests can get up close and personal with such diseases as Hepatitis C. Simultaneously, Rick's parents come to visit and a guest and shocking revelations, which does no wonders for his marriage. First aired 16 December 2013. 1.3 M viewers. Directed by John Rice, written by Eric Acosta and Wade Randlolf.

“M Night Shaym-Alients!” - Rick and Morty must escape a bizarre simulation they are thrust into by a group of aliens determined to steal the recipe for dark matter, while Jerry also unwittingly comes along for the ride. Directed by John Meyers, Written by Tom Kauffman. Originally aired 13 January 2014. 1.32 M viewers.

“Meeseeks and Destroy” - Exhausted by his family’s pleas for help to their mundane problems, Rick provides them with the convenient Meeseeks box, which generates a blue man who will fulfil their request and then vanish, which frees up time, allowing him to go on an adventure of Morty’s devising. Directed by Brian Newton, Written by Ryan Ridley. First aired 20 January 2014. 1.61 M viewers.

“Rick Potion No 9” - Rick provides Morty with a serum to win over Jessica romantically, myopic of the current flu season. Directed By Stephen Sandroval, Written by Justin Roiland. First aired 27 January 2014. 1.75 M viewers

“Raising Gazorp Gazorp” - Morty purchases a sex-bot from an alien pawn shop and fathers a half human child, prompting Summer and Rick to travel to Gazorp Gazorp to relocate him. Directed by Jeff Meyers, Written by Eric Acosta and Wade Randolf. First aired 10 March 2014. 1.76M viewers.

"Rixty Minutes"- Rick modifies the family cable box to include television programming from every dimension, and gives a pair of actualization goggles to mollify some more vain Smith-Sanchez family members.

"Something Ricked This Way Comes" - One town is not large enough for both Rick and the devil, who has opened a dubious store hawking magical goods... with a twist!

"Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind" - Rick has to clear his name after being framed for crimes against Rickmanity.

"Ricksy Business" - After Beth and Jerry leave on a romantic maritime soiree, Rick and Summer throw an interdimensional house party.


Season 2 (2015) "A Rickle in Time" - The timeline is split into two due to Rick's mistake with the time device, while Jerry and Beth share a romantic moment.

"Mortynight Run" - Morty tries to save a man's life, which engulfs him into a plot of intrigue and lies.

"Auto Erotic Assimilation" - Rick meets an old girlfriend, which leaves him quite emotional.

"Total Rickall" - A parasite infiltrates the Smith household, which takes the form of zany outrageous characters.

"Get Schwifty" - Rick and Morty must save the world from a giant head that wants to hear a hit song.

"The Ricks Must Be Crazy" - Rick needs to repair his car after neglecting to check his oil.

"Big Trouble in Little Sanchez" - Rick recommends Jerry and Beth see an alien marriage counselor.

"Interdimensional Cable 2: Tempting Fate" - The family watches more interdimensional cable as Jerry is in an alien hospital, which would like to use his penis in a heart transplant.

"Look Who's Purging Now" - Rick and Morty are stranded on a planet due to a Morty being a Morty.

"The Wedding Squanchers" - The Smith/Sanchez family attends a wedding.
Season 3 (2017)
Season 4 (2019-2020)
Season 5 Specials "Bushworld Adventures" -
"Samurai and Shogun" -
"Rick and Morty vs Genoicder" -

Resources for Home-Schoolers

Home-Schoolers should consult an authority figure, such as a parent or pastor, before watching the program Rick and Morty due to the excessive violence and vulgarities. The works of H G Wells, Jules Verne, Ray Bradbury or William Gibson may be preferable to this particular program, and would have more academic study devoted to them. If you happen to study television as part of your homeschooling studies, a few resources are included. The TV Tropes entry is a good place to start.

=Essay Questions

1. Compare and contrast the characters of Rick and Morty? 2. Why does the show often include elements that are not clearly strictly scientific? 3. Is the show compatible with Christian practice? 4. How does the show fit within the broader science fiction canon? 5. Should the show be renewed beyond the current 60 additional episodes? 6. Who is your favorite character in the show? 7. Is Rick a good man? 8. Is the show politically or religiously biased? 9. Is the show too violent?

Other Activities

Try drawing your own fanart of characters or backgrounds from the show! Review the show, or individual seasons or episodes. Try joining the Rick and Morty subreddit at r/rickandmorty.

References