I haven’t seen a toon as funny as Rick & Morty since Family Guy debuted back in the late 90s, and when I first saw it the show reminded me of early Family Guy too. I wonder if Seth McFarlane has seen it and, if he has, I wonder if he’s kicking himself for not having come up with the idea first? By the time I saw Rick & Morty the first season had already come and gone. I had gotten a press release for the coming DVD and blu-ray and thought nothing of it. It wasn’t until a couple of Facebook friends praised it that I had this half-thought of perhaps checking it out. That very afternoon I checked Adult Swim On Demand and most of the episodes were up, I grabbed a random one and watched and, holy shit, was it funny! I was hooked right from the get go!
Now for those not in the know Rick & Morty is basically an R-rated riff on the Doc Brown and Mary McFly characters from the Back To The Future franchise. Rick Sanchez is Doc Brown and Morty Smith is McFly, except here the “Doc Brown” character is a pessimistic alcoholic who swears like a motherfucker, and Morty is a more inept version of McFly. The only thing that annoys me from the TV airings is that Adult Swim bleeps all the f-words. Every other swear seems to be fine except that one, and bleeped fucks always annoy the fuck out of me.
To avoid getting sued Rick is not a time traveler, his thing is space travel, hopping through parallel realities and other dimensions, which they did a lot more of in Season Two. Even the spaceship Rick drives looks nothing like the Delorean Brown created in the Back To The Future movies. Rick’s ship is basically a literal flying saucer that seats two comfortably.
Beth Smith is Rick’s daughter, and she’s married to Jerry Smith. They have two kids, the aforementioned Morty and daughter, Summer. Jerry goes from employed to unemployed to employed again during the course of the show thus far. Summer is still in high school and so is Morty. What became of Rick’s wife we never learn. They all live together, until the Season Two finale when the family is finally and reluctantly broken up. Not in so many pieces, Rick is the only one forcibly removed, but more on that when I dissect the episodes, which is going to happen right about now:
A RICKLE IN TIME: This episode starts right off where the season finale ended. Sort of. Rick froze time outside the house so they could have time to fix it up since it was demolished last season thanks to an interdimensional house party. Time is normal, however, for anyone inside, which means Rick, Morty and Summer can intermingle with frozen time. Six months have gone by for them while the outside world is frozen. But once it’s returned to normal Rick warns the kids things may be a little wonky. This wonkiness comes in the form of being uncertain, which Morty and Summer become, and that uncertainly splits reality in two. The episode plays out with reality #1 on top and reality #2 on the bottom of the screen. Then calamity strikes again and now we’ve got 2 more alternate realities. This continues until there’s a shitload of other time lines. Meanwhile Beth and Jerry are unaffected. They’re out getting ice cream when they almost run into a deer. This deer becomes their storyline as Beth is obsessed in trying to help it while a hunter shows up and claims it’s his after he shot it.
MORTYNIGHT RUN: I really liked this episode. Good story, funny as Hell, and did they lose their Jerry? Perhaps. While giving Morty driving lessons in his spaceship Rick gets a business call, but before they deviate off course they have to drop Jerry off at a custom made Jerry daycare. One of the alternate Ricks came up with the idea because Jerry’s don’t fare well off world. In this episode we learn Rick is kind of a gunrunner. And on this particular day he’s selling a special weapon to an assassin who’s off to assassinate this sentient cloud creature. Rick takes his payment and blows it all on this interstellar arcade. But Morty has got some moral issues with selling weapons to killers, so much so that while Rick is playing a video game he takes the ship out to see if he can stop that assassination. You know what? He actually does stop it, just not the way he thought he was going to. He accidentally crashes his ship into the station where the killing was going down and squashes the assassin.
There’s a twist to this one though. We naturally assume the subject of the assassination is a good guy and the assassin a natural bad guy. No really. Sure this telepathic talking/mind fucking sentient cloud was in some kind of containment cell and sure he’s pleasant to communicate with, and all he wants Morty and Rick to do is take him back to this planet that houses this rip in the fabric of space so he can re-join his race, but there’s a catch. Once he tells the others where this dimension is they’re going to invade and wipe out all carbon based lifeforms because they believe they’re inferior. Proving Rick’s argument was right that things aren’t black and white out here in the great open space of space. But Morty doesn’t tell him he was right after he kills this creature himself with the very gun Rick sold to that assassin. This is a hilarious episode! Trust me.
AUTO EROTIC ASSIMILATION: In this one we learn some more about Rick Sanchez, specifically what he likes in the “chicks” he dates. In this case not a human chick, but an alien named, Unity. She’s a hive mind that takes over worlds, but when she and Rick dated she was young and only able to take over a town. And their relationship was based on hardcore sex and partying. While cruising through space with Morty and Summer, he gets a distress call and answers it because distress calls mean free shit. During their scouring of the ship is when they meet Unity. She was in the process of taking over the rest of the crew. So down to her planet they go. Rick wants to rekindle the relationship while Beth sees her take over as a slap in the face to individuality.
What Unity learns is Rick’s a bad influence on her. Summer inadvertently starts a race war when Unity’s effect on some of the people wears off because she’s tanked. Yeah, Morty and his sister are almost killed. This all ends in heartbreak—again—as Unity breaks up with Rick. When he gets home he tries to kill himself, but fails because he was tanked. Let’s just say he passed out in the nick of time. During all this Jerry and Beth have their own shit to deal with namely the discovery of a secret lab beneath the cellar where Rick has an alien life form imprisoned. An alien who’s had enough of their bickering, breaks out, and gives them a hilarious tongue-lashing.
TOTAL RICKALL: Another insane and funnier than normal episode. Parasites of the alien variety have infested the family’s home. They breed by infesting your mind and planting fake memories that involve odd characters that you believe are part of the family. These parasites then take on that form. Each time you reminisce it has the potential of adding another “character” to the family. If they were to get out they’d take over the planet. These characters range from a butler, a velociraptor, Frankenstein’s Monster, a humanoid pencil, basically cartoon characters. Rick locks the house down and refuses to let anyone out until he figures who’s who. You just have to see this one to believe it!
GET SCHWIFTY: This episode falls into the okay category. It’s funny, sure, just not as hilarious as everything else in the season, or season one. If anything it’s the weirdest episode of this show they’ve created. It’s basically a riff on the ills of religion and the “ills” of American Idol. That’s right I never watched Idol. That just isn’t my thing and I’m glad they cancelled it. A huge alien head comes to earth and creates destruction. All it utters is “Give me what you got.” Rick knows what’s happening, grabs Morty and off they go to the Pentagon. These alien heads are part of a weird intergalactic reality show. They invade star systems and demand the populace to give them their best song. If they like it the planet is whisked away and entered into the show. During the rounds, if you fail to impress the heads with your song they blow up your planet. “Get Schwifty” is the hilarious, nonsensical ditty Rick came up with on the fly and the head liked it, so Earth was entered in the contest. Now they have to come with another song to win or the Earth dies screaming.
Meanwhile the townsfolk begin worshipping the heads in the sky and giving them offerings, sacrifices basically, by tying a ton of balloons to some poor sap who floats up to the heads, dying obviously when they all pop and he plummets to Earth. Summer takes to this religion like a kool-aid guzzling Jonestownian, and her parents are kind of okay with it because she’s so nice and respectful now.
THE RICKS MUST BE CRAZY: As the participants in one of the commentaries for this episode puts it this is an episode about things within things. The B-story on this one is especially funny. After treating his granddaughter and grandson to a showing of Ball Fondlers: The Movie in an alternate reality he treats them to some of the best ice cream this dimension has to offer, but they can’t get to it just yet because the ship’s battery isn’t pumping out enough juice. His solution is to go in and have a look? Go in and have a look? Yup, this how Rick makes a car battery for his ship. What he did was create small universe and waited until life evolved. He then pretended he was an Alien God and introduced them to electricity and how to make it. They make it and he siphons part of it off to power his car. Well, on this day the humanoid creatures in that battery just had a better idea of how to wean themselves off having to make electricity, they pulled a Rick and created a universe within this box. Waited like he did for life to evolve and, well, you get the picture.
Rick & Morty shrink down, put on their fake antennas and pay them a visit. The scientist is kind of a dick, like Rick, but not a lovable dick, just a dick dick, but a funny dick. This tale gets nuts as they shrink down even further to visit that Teenyverse that other scientist created. Eventually the others find out they were created by others and all the shit hits the fan.
The B-story is Summer inside Rick’s spaceship. He activated the security system to keep her safe and that’s one hell of a security system. It’s an A.I. that will kill anyone who tries to get in, but Summer forbids it to kill anymore, so the A.I. gets around this by using “psychological torture” on the SWAT team that shows up after the A.I. killed a guy earlier and crippled his buddy. It’s just plain hilarious. There’s no better way to say it.
BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE SANCHEZ: Again this is another episode where I found the B-story funnier than the A-story. The A-story involves Rick transplanting his mind into a teenage version of himself so he can help Morty and Summer find a vampire that’s loose in the school. Once the vampire is found and staked (it was the gym teacher, Mr. Furatu. Dracula will address that “name-problem” in the after credits sequence and it’s hilarious as usual), Rick doesn’t want to put his mind back in his old body. He wants to stay a teen consciously, but subconsciously he wants to be back and this urge come out in a twisted little song, a dance, and a drawing he creates.
The B-story involves Beth and Jerry getting off-world marriage counseling on a planet that has a 100% success rate. That is until they meet Beth & Jerry. To start off each is put into a machine that will turn their subconscious thoughts of each other into flesh and blood reality. These creatures are called mythologs and Jerry sees Beth as a vicious alien and Beth sees Jerry as this sad-sack worm. The horror of the situation is revealed when Beth and Jerry’s mythologs becomes co-dependent, which isn’t supposed to happen because most mythologs kill each other. Well, they end up working together, escaping their prisons and killing all the aliens in the facility while Beth & Jerry try and find a way to stop them. In the end, it kind of worked. The whole, sad, tragic and bloody situation brought the two of them closer together.
INTERDIMENSIONAL CABLE 2: TEMPTING FATE: This is a sequel to the season one episode, “Rixty Minutes,” where Rick hooked up this box to the TV so they could pull in channels from all parallel realities! Here the A & B plots are more closely linked when Jerry accidentally poisons himself by eating something from Rick’s cabinet in the kitchen and they have to take him to an alien hospital. Out in the waiting room the family takes in the bizarre shows airing on the “television.” That would be the A-story, the B-story is after Jerry is cured an alien species comes to him and asks if he would donate his dick and balls to their dying leader. Jerry’s junk would be retrofitted to be this alien’s new heart. Jerry stupidly agrees and hi-jinks ensue.
LOOK WHO’S PURGING NOW: Like ‘Total Rickall’ this episode is hilarious all the way through. While Rick and Morty are cruising through space that hit an alien bug that goes splat all over the windshield. But Rick’s all out of wiper fluid so he stops off at the nearest planet to get some and the nearest planet looks like a colonial times earth. One of the local tells him they should be gone before sunset, because once a year this planet has a “purge night.” Yup, just like the movies and Rick even references them. Scary thing is Rick’s all gung-ho to watch. Morty not so much. Regardless Rick takes the ship up a ways and waits till night falls. To get a better look once all the killing starts Rick takes the ship lower and that’s when Morty sees this hot, alien chick about to get her ass purged. He makes Rick go down and save her. They do and once Rick gets his weapon out and his bloodily blasting away at anyone who comes within range, he starts having a grand ol’ time. But that alien chick screws ‘em big time. She talks them into going to save her grandmother, but there is no grandmother, once inside the house, she takes Rick’s gun, shoots him in the liver, and steals the ship. Now, Rick and Morty are stuck on a Purge planet during Purge night and the bloody hilarity ensues. I don’t think this show has had more carnage stuffed into one episode than this one. Rick even shoots some dude in his junk early on. Yeah, that one crippled me.
The B-Story is Jerry trying to reconnect with his daughter, but all he ends up doing is asking her for money, which ruins it all.
THE WEDDING SQUANCHERS: This is the Season Two cliffhanger that ends on a pretty goddamn grim note. Rick’s best friend, Bird Person, is getting married to human female, Tammy. The two of them got together in the Season One finale during that house party. Rick doesn’t want to go, but once Jerry is accidentally “kidnapped” to the alien planet where the wedding is taking place by some weird looking intergalactic meatball that delivered the invitation the family is now forced to go.
What we learn in this episode is the Galactic Federation considers Rick, Bird Person and all their friends at the wedding terrorists from a war they waged many, many years ago and Rick has essentially been in hiding ever since. A shocker is that Tammy isn’t who she says she was. We saw her a few times in Season One and took her to be a classmate of Summer’s but she was really an undercover agent who orchestrated all this, even the relationship, to nail Bird Person and Rick. And she ends up killing Bird Person!
On the run the family can no longer return to Earth, because that’s the first place they’ll be looking for them, so they hide out for a while until Rick decides to give himself up so Morty, Summer, Beth and Jerry can live peacefully on Earth. And now that Earth is part of the Federation it’s become a melting plot of actual aliens from other worlds. The last scene is Rick being put into his alien cell.
On June 7th Warner Brothers releases the Complete Second Season of Rick & Morty on separate DVD and Blu-ray editions!
Video/Audio/Subtitles: 1080p 1.78:1 high definition widescreen—5.1 English Dolby TrueHD, 5.1 English Dolby Digital—English SDH subs only.
Extras included . . .
- Commentaries by the creators on every episode.
- Deleted Animatics (2:11)
- Season 2 Premiere Party Featuring Chaos Chaos (43:13)
- Animatics (every episode)
- Booklet (Plumbus Owner’s Manual: Operating And Servicing Instructions)
The commentaries are sometimes as funny as the episodes, but the real treat for this set is the Plumbus Owner’s Manual that comes in two languages, alien and human. The two favorite and most hilarious episodes are Total Rickall and Look Who’s Purging Now. Weirdest . . . Get Schwifty.