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

Rick and Morty – Season 1, Episode 10 -“Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind” – Behind Every Rick There is a Morty

Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind

“Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind” is easily one of the strongest episodes of the series, and also one of the darkest. In this we see the depths our Rick will go to use people and also how underneath it all he does care about Morty. It’s really well done and the dark of the episode makes the light moments our characters get all the more powerful.

    The story involves the Council of Rick’s arresting our Rick for the murder of Ricks in other dimensions. When our Rick escapes to find the real culprit a hunt goes on for him as the Rick’s hang out in the Rick C-137’s Dimension with his family. The Rick behind it all is later found but all is not as it appears to be.

The Pros: Jerry and Doofus Rick – Doofus Rick is really kind and sweet and he becomes best friends with Jerry as they both aren’t very bright and are bullied by all the other Ricks. They have a lot tender moments building things and talking before Doofus Rick eventually has to go. This was a great mini-arc as Jerry finally connected to a Rick.

Beth and the Ricks – The Ricks love Beth and Beth loves the Ricks as they all compliment her and we clearly see that there is no one Rick loves more in the world than Beth, no matter what dimension he’s in.

Evil Rick – Evil Rick is messed up as we see him torture Mortys to mask his signal and we learn of his plan to drain our Rick of his memories so he can become smarter and continue doing his own thing. Eventually the Morty’s turn on him after our Morty frees him and he is beaten to death.

The Morty’s – The Morty’s have a religion and live in despair and pain (the one’s trapped by the Evil Rick) but when our Morty comes he is seen as the Good Morty and liberates them from Evil Rick and Morty. It’s a powerful scene and we learn later when we find out Evil Morty is behidn it all that though the Morty’s are seen as stupid they have more potential than the Rick’s pretend them to have. They are more than cloaking devices for the Ricks (which is how our Rick explains the role of a Morty to be).

Our Rick and Morty – Morty doesn’t trust Rick through much of this episode as he learns just how twisted so many of the Rick’s are and how they just use Morty as a cloaking tool from their enemies. After he and the Morty’s save Rick though they reach some sort of balance as our Rick calls him “The Mortiest Morty,” since he’s the “Rickiest Rick.”

Evil Morty – Evil Morty was behind it all and is a twisted guy who is still out there. He was willing to torture his own selves in order to hunt down and kill Rick’s and was controlling Evil Rick all along. Whatever plot he has further down the line, will not be good. What an awesome villain.

This is one of my favorite episodes and shows just how twisted and wonderful this show can get. We get to see the psychology of Morty and Rick further as they get contrasted with the ones from other dimensions and we find just how much of a hero our Morty truly is as well as the fact that Evil Morty is still out there and was twisted enough to torture other versions of himself in order to hunt down and kill Ricks.

Final Score: 10 / 10 Perfect episode.

Rick and Morty – Season 1, Episode 9 – “Something Ricked This Way Comes” – Rick Beats the Devil

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     This episode was hilarious as it shows how stupid the “Devil” type characters are in giving gifts that bite back for free as all it takes is someone smart like Rick to turn the whole idea on it’s head and leave them with nothing. There is an element of science versus magic in this episode but what really makes it work is the Summer and Rick plot with the Devil, the sideplot on Pluto is a lot of fun as well.

    The story involves Summer working for an antique store run by the Devil leading Rick to uncurse the items and become a competitor. Elsewhere Jerry is helping Morty with his science project and is taken to Pluto when he claims that Pluto is a planet, counter to all science and and the people of Pluto see him as a hero.

The Pros: The Pluto Arc – The Pluto Arc is a great metaphor for global warming skeptics and intelligent design “scientists” as it is people who ignore the actual evidence to promote a claim that has no basis beyond keeping those with money happy. This is what Jerry does and it takes Morty calling him out and the King of Pluto’s son being sentenced to death for him to realize that he loves his boy and that he was wrong about Pluto being a planet as he stops covering fro the mining that is destroying Pluto.

The Devil – The Devil is hilarious and is super insecure as he tries to take his death at one point and after Summer helps him make a tech company after Rick’s competition stops him that he dumps Summer leading to Rick and Summer beating him up at the end for being a selfish prick.

Summer and Rick – These two have a great arc as Rick shows he does care for Summer while the Devil only cared for himself and was just using her. It’s a nice contrast as the Devil and Rick are similar in personality but Rick is willing to truly invest in his Grandkids.

This was a really great episode, the only weak part is the Pluto People weren’t explored all that much and were just a metaphor for humanity…which worked but it would have been stronger if they’d been a truly unique alien species. The Devil, Rick and Summer arc is the strongest part of the episode and is what makes it great.

Final Score: 9.6 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 1, Episode 8 – “Rixty Minutes” – Summer and Morty and the Improv Show

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      “Rixty Minutes” is mostly an improv clip show with some great character moments inbetween. It feels very improvised, including the end which Morty actually references inside the episode! This is brilliant but the format brings it down as well as the fact that not all the comedy acts are good.

       The story involves Rick installing a dimensional device onto the television that allows them to watch shows from other realities which leads to Jerry and Beth seeing the life they might have had without Summer and Summer dealing with being the outsider and viewed as a mistake.

The Pros: Some of the Skits – The Skits are super random, you have a “Ants in his eyes,” a guy a play of the “A-Team” and a few other shows too as well as Jerry appearing as an actor in some films. They mostly work and are funny.

Summer and Morty – Summer feels unloved after she learns she might have been aborted and that her mom had thought about it leading to her ready to run away until Morty shows her the graves in the backyard and tells her about he and Rick destroyed the other reality. It’s a powerful scene and the first time Morty opens up.

Rick – Rick references prior episodes and is detached watching tv the entire time. His complete non-chalateness is wonderful and he’s the only sane person as the egos around him go crazy. Morty is also sane too.

Okay: Jerry and Beth – These two just weren’t that funny. There were popular and successful in their alternate realities but completely alone and in the end they come together in that alternate reality too. It felt like a play on romantic comedies, and I liked the moment of them in the alternate reality getting together, but beyond that it was the weakest part of the episode.

This was a good episode brought down mostly by the format. You can only do some much with randomness. It was funny, which made it good and there were some good character moments, but it was mostly skits, giving it an almost “Family Guy” like feel.

Final Score: 8 / 10

Rick and Morty – Season 1, Episode 7 – “Raising Gazorpazorp” – Cultural Stereotypes and No Substance

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     “Raising Gazorpadorp” is one of the weaker episodes I have watched so far. The Gazorpians are just stereotypes and we never see much character development but Summer who actually gets to go on an adventure! There are great ideas here, especially with Morty becoming a father, but it doesn’t end up going anywhere.

    The story involves Morty being bought a sex robot he wants that leads to him accidently creating a child with it that is half-Gazorpian. Summer and Rick go to the planet and find Male Gazorpians are only violence while the women are a calm, peaceful and violent society in their own right.

The Pros: Summer – Summer figures out the Female Gazorpians quickly and saves her and risk by their initial compliment of her top she was wearing be the key thing. She shows she is a could companion in this and saves them.

Rick – Rick deals with his sexism in this and it is implied that he will adventure with Summer in the future as she did save his life. He is hilarious in this too with how much of a rebel he is to anyone around him and the fact that his first thought is to kill Morty Jr. and his sarcastic comments about naming “it” are pretty funny.

Okay: Morty and Morty Jr. – Morty’s son wants to conquer the world like all Gazorpian males and his arc is becoming an artist in the end and making peace with his dad Morty. It was predictable and just wasn’t all that funny. It felt contrived.

The Parents – Jerry and Beth act passive agressive to Morty as Morty is seen as Jerry’s failure and Summer as Beth’s failure so Morty is expected to fail and Jerry gives Morty an “I told you so.” When Morty Jr. goes on a rampage.

The Cons: The Gazorpians – They are just stereotypes (women hate farts and are passive aggressive, men are aggressive and obsessed with sex) and it doesn’t go anywhere. I never felt the jokes paid off.

This is an episode that isn’t really needed. The only reason I could see for watching this is Summer makes a good travel and adventure companion for Rick and helps him grow in regards to his sexism. Besides that, you aren’t missing that much.

Final Score: 4 / 10