“Rick and Morty” Finale – Season 2, Episode 10 – “The Wedding Squanchers” – A Funny, Powerful Ending…Free Rick

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   “The Wedding Squanchers” is a powerful ending to a good season. In this we get to know a lot of the characters and have one of the most powerful endings to any animated show. Next season feels so far away. I also finished watching this on the same date in the future that The Doc and Marty traveled to in “Back to the Future Part 2” it just took a while for me to have the time to update the reviews. “Back to Future” inspired this show as Morty is like a younger and less innocent Marty and Rick is very much a more unhinged sociopathic Doc Brown.

       The story involves the wedding of Bird Person and Tammy and all that comes out of it when it is revealed that Tammy is an agent sent to bring down Bird Person, Rick and all his friend’s the Federation considers terrorists. The Smiths must make their escape.

The Pros: The Wedding – The Wedding is wonderful and all of Bird Person’s colorful friends are present. The wedding ends in tragedy though revealing Rick once again being right on Weddings being just like a funeral.

Tammy – Tammy reveals she’s been an undercover agent the entire time and even manages to nearly capture Rick. It is only Squanchy getting Squanched that manages to defeat her but we still don’t know if she’s dead or not. Honestly wouldn’t be surprised if she is still alive.

Bird Person – Bird Person has been through some heavy stuff and was a pretty lonely guy. I think that is how Tammy was able to take advantage of him in the first place as it was at a party where everyone was getting drunk and Bird Person was probably dealing with some major PTSD from all he’d been through. R.I.P. Bird Person. You will be missed.

Squanchy – Squanchy rocks! In this we see him get Squanched and help save the Smith’s. The Wedding takes place on his world too. The guy is a major stand up guy. I hope he survived Tammy’s betrayal.

Beth – Beth is going through a lot of  loss in this as we see how Rick leaving her has left her broken and selfish to the point that she isn’t able to listen to Bird Person sharing some pretty traumatic stuff. By the end of the episode she is broken as Rick is gone from her life again.

Morty – Morty is pretty aware in this as we see him reach out for Rick to stay since he knows how it will affect Beth as well as himself. He is really great in this even though he isn’t core except for the end.

Rick – Rick is a good guy in this…he goes to his friend’s wedding and loses him and we see why is so detached and bitter…and in the end he turns himself in to save his family…showing that at the end of the day Rick has good. Free Rick!

The Ending – Nine Inch Nails’s song “Hurt” plays over Rick turning himself in and being put in a high security cell. It is so sad as Morty and Beth are especially feeling the pain of Rick being gone while Jerry is happy to be given a government issued job and Summer is numb.

Jerry and Summer – These two are just victims and don’t really do anything to help or hinder Rick’s choices as in the end we see that his decision came from love and not guilt.

   This was a great episode and easily the best episode of the season. Rick turning himself in and the death of Bird Person were actually sad events…our time with these characters has made us care about them and we still get wonderful dark comedy and action inbetween. This is part of why this show is so great.

Final Score: 9.6 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 9 – “Look Who’s Purging Now” – Rick and Morty Unleashed

Rick and Morty Look Who's Purging Now

  “Look Who’s Purging Now” is a good but not great episode. It has moments where it is a lot of fun but it can’t seem to decide whether it wants to be complete humor or give moments of sincerity that reveal moments about our characters…the Finale was that perfect balance, this episode was not.

    The story involves Rick and Morty traveling to a purge world (where a world is at peace because every year the people go full crazy on each other) and end up being stuck and needing Summer to send them aid after a local named Arthricia steals Rick’s vehicle.

The Pros: The Premise – The premise of visiting a Purge World that reveals Morty’s repression is a great concept, it just wasn’t ever fully explored. We even had moments where Rick showed he was capable of showing compassion.

Summer – Summer is bored at home and is good at setting boundaries with her dad Jerry. She is on top of things too and is a bigger help to Rick than Morty who is right there with him. She’s very much part of the team even if she isn’t on the adventure.

Arhtricia – Arthricia is crazy and is a great character as her quest for revenge isn’t bad. She also could have been part of Team Rick easily too as they showed they could cooperate together really well when she wasn’t trying to steal his stuff.

Rick – Rick is very much a sociopath and goes to the world to kill simply because he can and it is the way of that world, but even he has some sort of code and only kills in self defense and doesn’t kill those who are running away which shows he is always in control of himself to some degree.

Morty – Morty is kind but also only helps Arthricia because he wants to be with her. He also goes full psycho at one point when the locals are trying to kill him and has no code and Rick needs to knock him out before he comes back as himself. He’s dealing with a lot of repressed stuff.

The Cons: Jerry – He is just lonely and trying to take advantage of Summer and her memories of him. It was hard to see him as a character, he felt more like a concept.

  This was an episode that was a lot of fun but wasn’t a favorite. Some of the jokes among the local populace fell flat, but Arthricia and Rick going crazy on the Rich who had set the whole purge situation up was awesome.

Final Score: 8.4 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 8 – “Interdimensional Cable 2: Tempting Fate” – Jerry’s Story is Stronger

Interdimensional Cable 2 Tempting Fate

  The sequel is not as good as the original “Interdimensional Cable” though Jerry’s story is really good at showing just how much of a sad, lonely loser he is. The side stories aren’t really memorable.

     The story involves Jerry being transported to an alien hospital and learning that Space Ghandi needs his penis for a heart transplant since they are around the same size and shape forcing him to go through extreme means to try and not do it but be admired. A bored Rick creates another Interdimensional Cable network.

The Pros: The Improv Shows that worked – “Lil Bits” was funny describing food in a sexual manner, “Jan Quadrant Vincent 17” was a good satire of action films and “Mr Stealy” was good too. The rest were really forgettable and I agreed with summer that it was going for extremes and lost the humor.

Jerry’s Story – Jerry is a dick and he ends up going from wanting to get out of giving it away after being okay with it due to social pressure even it means saving a life and later trying to force the doctors to cut it off and holding them hostage. Jerry hitting rock bottom is really illustrated in this episode and just how desperate he is.

   The main group isn’t really there. Nothing is memorable about Rick, Beth, Summer or Morty as they are just watching the television. They had a lot more story last time. This was why the episode was weak. It depended way to much on Jerry and the short television improvs to carry the episode.

Final Score: 4 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 7 – “Big Trouble in Little Sanchez” – The Suffering of Little Rick

Big Trouble in Little Sanchez

    “Big Trouble in Little Sanchez” is a wonderful depressing episode as we see both Rick’s selfishness but also the fact that he does care about his grandkids as it is their desire for an adventure is one of the reasons he becomes Little Rick. Elsewhere Beth and Jerry have a great side story too.

    The story involves Rick putting himself in a younger clone to help Summer and Morty hunt a vampire at the school leading Rick to stay Little Rick while elsewhere Jerry and Beth go through couples therapy on an alien world that specializes in it revealing just how dysfunctional they are.

The Pros: Beth and Jerry Side Plot – On the planet there are machines that recreate how they see each other and Jerry is seen as a worm while Beth is a monster. The Beth Monster than uses the Jerry’s the conquer as she slaughters all the people at the retreat and it is only through Jerry being courageous that ideal Jerry is created who when the machine is placed on his head creates the Beth that is a Goddess and stops Monster Beth. Biggest reveal, Jerry and Beth are co-dependent.

Little Rick – Little Rick is popular and everyone loves him since he’s a good singer and dancer but he’s crying for help as the real Rick is stuck in a vat and it comes in through his anxiety. It is only when Summer and Morty fight for him to be back that Little Rick ends and Rick returns to his body. He’s a great character.

Morty – Morty is selfish in this as Little Rick helps him hook up with Jessica and Morty enjoys being popular and being able to have fun with his Grandfather as his Grandfather is actually treating him with respect. Even he eventually sees the real Rick crying for help through Little Rick’s songs though.

Summer – Summer is the first to realize something is wrong and works to get Rick back even though the hunting vampires idea was brought about by her. She loses all her standing at school when Little Rick turns on her but she stands by it and we see just how much she cares about her Grandfather.

Rick – Rick is crazy as we see him destroy his other clones as he didn’t see the Little Rick test as a success. He’s pretty unstable in this but we see that his love for his Grandchildren was one of the motivations for becoming Little Rick in the first place. He does send the Smith’s to therapy too showing that he is all for them resolving things or getting a divorce.

This was another great episode and easily one of the best of the season. The Beth and Jerry side story was hilarious and shows how their dysfunction is really what keeps them together while at the same time we get to see a nice side to Rick when he becomes Little Rick as well as his love for music and dance being a thing no matter what body he’s in.

Final Score: 10 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 4 – “Total Rickall” – Bad Memories and Imagination

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      “Total Rickall” is a good but not great episode. In this we see just how dysfunctional the Smith family is and it actually ends up being an advantage in regards to saving the world for the most part it. We also get another “Mr. Meeseeks” type character who is a lot of fun.

     The episode involves parasites sneaking in on one of the adventures and the Smith family dealing with the threat as the parasites grow by creating happy memories of themselves in the minds of the hosts as they try to get Rick to open the doors so they can go out and conquer the world.

The Pros: Mr. Poopybutthole – Is the nice family friend who no one remembers but has been on countless adventures with the family. Because there are no negative memories with him (the parasites create positive memories) leads to Beth shooting him. He survives but he leaves the family after that.

The Smith Family – The Smith family dysfunction saves them from the parasites as they only have negative memories of one another for the most part. It’s nice subversion of the friendship trope as it is the negative aspects that save them in the end.

Beth and Jerry – Sleepy Gary is both of their lover and they care about him to the degree that their relationship is healthier showing they should have never gotten married in the first place. After Sleepy Gary is killed it takes them time to get through the first happy relationship either of them really had romantically.

Rick and Morty – Rick and Morty get overwhelmed by all the parasites and things come to a head when Rick has a Morty holding a gun against his head and he threatens Morty to kill him which leads to Morty realizing that the parasites do not prey of pain they prey off of joy.

The Cons: Lack of Focus – This was an episode that felt chaotic at times and that really brought it down. It was like every imagined character was supposed to be a gag and not all the gags were good so it just went on for a long time.

   This was a good but not great episode. “Auto Erotic Assimilation” was better but this one is still good and I would recommend it, even though the randomness detracts a bit from the story. The Smith family dysfunction is on display and it ends up being what saves them.

Final Score: 8 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 3 – “Auto Erotic Assimilation” – Self Destructive Rick and Love Hurts

Auto_Erotic_Assimilation

   Love can be hard and in this episode we get one of the best episode ending songs and scenes and also have an awesome alien (Unity) and all of the Sanchez’s get some sort of exploration. It is easily one of my favorite episodes so far.

     The story involves Jerry finding an alien underneath the garage and it leading to he and Beth fighting over Rick’s role in their lives while Rick hooks up with the Hive Mind Entity Unity who was a former lover while Summer and Morty deal with the consequences.

The Pros: Jerry – Jerry’s insecurities are pretty strong in this episode but he stands up for himself leading to some sort of balance established again and the failing marriage.

Beth – Beth defends her father and we learn that she has abandonment issues and in the end agrees with Jerry on Rick though and how Rick does assume too much and doesn’t really respect their space well at all.

Summer – Summer distrusts Unity at first until she sees the original populace and how they were racist, violent and falling apart as a civilization. She calls out Rick for this reason when she realizes Unity is great but Rick is making her unstable and leading to her populace falling into anarchy.

Morty – Morty is there trying to be supportive of both Summer and Rick but comes around to Summer’s point of view fully after the uninfected populace nearly kills himself and Summer.

Unity – Unity is awesome! She created a peaceful, galactic civilization after assimilating one that had once been violent, racist and falling apart. In this we see that she did so after her breakup with Rick and that she loves him after leaving him when she realizes the truth that Rick brings out all her worse tendencies.

Rick – Seeing Rick happy and in love is awesome! It takes a hive mind to stimulate him and we learn in the end he does love Unity even though he tells Jerry at the beginning of the episode love doesn’t exist. It’s sad and after Unity leaves him to take care of herself he nearly kills himself but breaks down crying preventing it. It is one of the saddest scenes on the show easily.

   This was  great episode with the only con being the alien in the basement who Jerry and Beth run into. The rest of the episode is really strong and I really like the character of Unity. It’s nice seeing a benevolent Hive Mind in sci. fi. I highly recommend this episode.

Final Score: 9.5 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 2 – “Mortynight Run” – Consequences of Morty’s naivety

Mortynight_Run

   Poor Morty, such good intentions but unaware of the deadly consequences of some of his actions as he doesn’t know galactic politics or how other species view humans or organics. This episode really shows what happens when Rick isn’t around to keep Morty in check (where we usually see the reverse being the case) and it is a lot of fun, though the next episode is better.

     The story is about how Morty saves a gas being that adopts the name “Fart” and the consequences of that as they try and get it home. Jerry was also aboard the space ship as it was when Morty was learning to fly it and he is left at the Jerry Day Care that Rick’s set up for Jerrys in order to keep them safe.

The Pros: The Jerrys – The Jerrys are funny as they choose to stay in the day care and our Jerry does too after the outside world is too confusing and frightening. They are interchangeable too as at the end two get mixed up but the point is made that it doesn’t really matter. All Jerrys are the same in the end.

Blips & Chitz – This is an arcade that is a lot of fun as you have the chance to live a fake life and make choices for your character and the game ends when you die and you are graded on the choices you make. Morty chose to go back to his father’s job while Rick takes his character off the radar. It looked like an amazingly fun arcade.

The Fart – The Fart gives Morty happy trips but in the end wants to destroy organic life as it’s species sees organic life as a virus that needs to be exterminated (whether it sees Morty as an exception is never stated) leading to Morty finally killing it.

Rick – Rick just wants to have a good time and has a lot of fun at the arcade while berating Morty for his stupid decision the rest of the episode. In this we see how aware he is of other aliens most likely being threat if they are under security.

Morty – Morty learns a hard lesson in this that he doesn’t always know the situation of what is going on as the Fart he saves plans on exterminating all organic life once he takes it to the portal back to it’s dimension. This leads to him killing it and realizing just how much he doesn’t know.

The Cons: The Assassin and Rick the Weapons Dealer – Could have been developed more. It was great he loved to kill and seemed like a fun guy but they set him up to be a lot more than a one-off character. Rick being a weapons dealer is not fully explored either, which is a shame as the show usually goes into depth when issues like that are brought up.

This was a good but not great episode as the fact that Rick is a weapons dealer is never fully explored nor the assassin he sells the weapon too (who seemed like an interesting character). The episode would have almost worked better just staying at Blips & Chitz as the story potential behind the different games would have been extensive.

Final Score: 8 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 2, Episode 1 – “A Rickle in Time” – The Consequence of Freezing Time

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    “A Rickle in Time” kicks off Season 2 and actually stands really strong on it’s own. In this we get a glimpse of Rick’s good side as well as giving us the full consequence of what happens when you mess with time. It’s really well done.

    The story involves Rick, Summer and Morty dealing with the consequence of time being frozen as it fractures around them leading to them possibly being erased from reality while Jerry hits a deer facing Beth and Jerry to solve the issue and deal with Beth’s control issues.

The Pros: Fourth Dimensional Beings – These guys are in charge of policing time and it is one of them who gives Summer, Morty and Rick the collars they eventually use to escape back to reality. They have sentient guns and are powerless without the guns as one is beaten by Rick, though they are immortal so even if they are beaten they cannot die.

Summer – Summer deals with not being Rick’s favorite (no one is) and we see that she is as much part of the adventure as Morty now as she is the first to escape the collapse.

Morty – Morty nearly dies in this but Rick risks his life to save him helping Morty realize that deep inside Rick really does care…which further develops his relationship to his grandfather.

Beth – Beth deals with her perfectionist tendencies as she does everything to save the deer Jerry hits. In this we see her learn to let go when the only way to save the deer is to admit she is wrong and not qualified, though she can’t the chance to save the deer in the end and succeeds.

Jerry – Jerry’s cowardice is shown (he says if the police ask Beth should be blamed since his Ice Cream was Rum Raisin) but we see he can be smart as he gets some guys and fakes a Federal law to get the deer away from a hunter and his lawyer. Jerry really comes through as a good guy in the end.

Rick – Rick’s selfishness is on full display (him trying to kill his grandkids and himself) to his selflessness (risking his life to save Morty) showing just how complex he is and the fact that he is growing and does care about Summer and Morty, even if he denies it.

   This is an episode that really kicks off Season 2 on a high note and is well worth checking out. The character moments are awesome and all the family members get some sort of development. The animation is also in top form as is the comedy per usual.

Final Score: 9 / 10

“Rick and Morty” Season 1 Retrospect – Insane and Dark Sci. Fi. Fun

Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind

    “Rick and Morty” is a show I highly recommend and after I finished Season 1 I started watching Season 2 so there will be more reviews later on in this amazing animated dark comedy sci. fi. The characters have depth and get developed over time and no matter how dark the show goes, it never stops having fun. Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon created a wonderful show and I’ll go into more depth on what I enjoyed about Season 1 and where it fell short.

The Pros: The Comedy – The comedy is hilarious! There are some brilliant satires in episodes (“Lawnmower Dog” satirizing both “Planet of the Apes,” “Inception” and “Friday the 13th.” As well as countless others. The comedy is both random but also has some great setups as well as character cons end up leading to some pretty good payoff later in relationship to other characters and the surrounding environment.

The Universe – The Universe is rich! From alternate dimensions and times, The Council of Ricks, Bird Person, the Meeseeks and the countless aliens and governments Rick comes into conflict with throughout his anti-authority adventures.

The Characters – The characters are wonderful and memorable and the family and their relationships develop over time in relationship to Rick and Morty who are the characters who primarily drive the plot.

Mr. Meeseeks – Mr. Meeseeks are created to solve problems and after they stop existing. Their entire existence is pain and when they try and help Jerry improve his golf game they come to see it as impossible and end up taking hostages and growing desperate in a stark contrast to their initial kind and supportive nature. I really hope we see these guys again.

Jerry – Jerry is an idiot and his arc is really becoming comfortable in the fact he is not smart and becoming comfortable in that as well as his role as a father and the fact that his wife loves him even though they clash a lot and are in a failing marriage. He’s an idiot but he’s sympathetic when he isn’t arrogant.

Beth – Beth is the high achiever and a staunch defender of her dad. She is the one helping Jerry develop into a better person and dealing with her perfectionist nature and learning to let go. She hasn’t gotten there yet but throughout the show we see the strange, extreme circumstances Rick’s or Jerry’s actions bring about bring her closer to that place.

Summer – Summer is Morty’s sister and her arc is dealing with the fact that she was a mistake and learning to accept that life is chaotic, strange and hard and at the end you die. This ends up making her a great Rick companion as Morty learned this over the course of the series too. She also doesn’t have the moral core Morty has either, best shown in “Ricksy Business.”

Rick – Rick is a sociopathic mad scientist whose moral core is Morty, his grandson and travel companion. Rick learns to care about Morty and the family over the course of the season and we see him see those small relationships and appreciate them in the overwhelming abyss that his the rest of reality. He’s also an anti-authority rebel which makes his relationships with alien governments entertaining.

Morty – Morty is like Marty to Rick’s Doc Brown and is the moral core of the show as he helps Rick care about people and life even as Morty goes through that same process of learning himself when his selfishness destroys the reality he starts out in. It is this arc that gives him a bleak view of existence but improves his relationship with Rick and his family. He is pretty mature at the end though he still has his wide eyed idealism that defines the character, even given all he’s been through.

Rick and the 4th Wall – Rick breaks the 4th Wall on multiple occasions and talks directly the audience telling them to watch next week or buy a product. It is hilarious and fits into the fact that Rick is aware of everything and that is why he is crazy and nuts.

The Cons: The Cliffhanger Ending – In “Ricksy Business” Rick freezes time so they can clean the house after the party and that is where it ends with them still cleaning. There isn’t a complete arc for this reason in regards to Rick and Beth in relationship to Rick as they were in conflict with him from the very first episode.

  For a show that is all about subtle arcs and callbacks ending the show on a cliffhanger ended up being the only con. It achieved it’s purpose as it made me watch on to see what happened but it did detract from the overall narrative. It is strong though and easily one of the best animated series currently on television. I laughed through most of it and the only episode that was weak was the one where they had gender stereotypes. The rest were at least 8’s and there were many that were high 9’s. My favorite episodes were “Lawnmower Dog,” “Meeseeks and Destroy” and “Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind.”

Final Score: 9.5 / 10.

Rick and Morty – Season 1, Episode 11 – “Ricksy Business” – Rick Can Solve Anything

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    “Ricksy Business” made me want to watch the film “Risky Business” since it if it is anything like this episode, it will probably be a lot of fun. This is an episode that showed just how big of dicks Summer and Rick are as Morty is playing damage control through most of the episode.

    The episode was directed by Stephen Standoval and written by Ryan Ridley and Tom Kauffman.

     The story involves Jerry and Beth leaving on a romantic getaway to a Titanic Recreation as Rick and Summer throw giant parties that soon get out of control as Morty tries to control the situations.

The Pros: The Party – Rick’s friends (Aliens and some members from the Council of Ricks) is a lot of fun as is Summer’s party where her desire to be popular alienates her friend Nancy as Abradorf Lincler (a Clone with the combined DNA of Abraham Lincoln and Adolf Hitler) is also seeking acceptance from his creator Rick.

Rick, Lincler and Nancy – These three team up to get the crystal Rick requests that will bring them back and they have a great moment where the Lincoln half of Lincler comes out in his  heroism as he risks all to get the crystals for Rick. Sadly Rick just wanted them to get high.

Summer and Rick – These two just don’t care about anyone at all and because of it they are great partiers, Rick especially is the life of the party in both the young crowd and among the aliens.

Rick – Rick saves the day by freezing time giving them time to clean and repair the house before Jerry and Beth get angry.

Morty – Morty in trying to make things right and courting Summer accidentally sends the house into another dimension and does all he can to fix it. Through this episode he realizes just how little influence he has with his Sister and Grandpa.

The Cons: The Titanic Arc – A janitor kidnaps Jerry to do the scenes together from the film and she is eventually defeated by Beth. It just wasn’t all that strong and there weren’t any good Titanic jokes.

This was a great episode but not a favorite and a good end to the Season. One thing I like that this episode does is Rick breaking the 4th Wall as he announces this is the Season Finale and says good-bye. It fits him being aware of everything and I like how he’s made reference to knowing he’s on a show in prior episodes. Overall it was a solid end to a great show and season.

Final Score: 9 / 10