[dropcap size=big]I[/dropcap]f you haven’t heard of the Adult Swim show Rick and Morty, I’m willing to bet you’ve been living under a rock for the past four years or so. A massive and boring rock (and for that, I am so, so sorry.) And if you have heard of it but you still haven’t feasted your eyes upon Justin Roiland’s WTF-inducing and totally ludicrous creation, it probably has something to do with those two descriptors.
What lies beneath
It’s so easy to be distracted by what lies on the dingy surface level of Rick and Morty: complete and utter vulgarity, over-the-top sequences (or entire episodes) chock full of gory cartoon violence (have you seen Pickle Rick?!), and practically every crude subject in between. Any word that isn’t Adult Swim-appropriate (which at this point isn’t many, to be honest) is bleeped out, but it’s really just for comedic effect. The violence is Tarantino-esque, as it becomes so ridiculous and unbelievable at certain points that you can’t help but chuckle.
It’s a facade after all
…the abundance of vulgarity and violence merely acts to distract the average viewer who might not otherwise catch on to the underlying themes and concepts.
Now, I don’t mean to sound like a snob, but Rick and Morty is a complex and intelligently crafted show. In other words, the abundance of vulgarity and violence merely acts to distract the average viewer who might not otherwise catch on to the underlying themes and concepts. That being said, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with enjoying the show on the simplest of terms. Sometimes I wish I could just turn off the theoretical bits of my brain and sop up all of the eye-roll worthy jokes at face value.
One episode in particular that exemplifies the dichotomy of stupidity and academe is “Get Schwifty”. On a totally basic level, the song that Morty and Rick produce in an attempt to save the world from planetary annihilation is cringe worthy yet wholly entertaining. Truly, “Get Schwifty” addresses the pitfalls and misconceptions that surround organized religion, a slightly more elevated topic that your average cartoon (most likely) wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole.
“Get Schwifty” addresses the pitfalls and misconceptions that surround organized religion, a slightly more elevated topic that your average cartoon (most likely) wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole.
Regardless of whether you enjoy Roiland’s hit show for the rude ‘n crude humor, the hard-hitting and thought-provoking concept, or probably a little bit of both, it’s undeniably one of (if not) the smartest series on cable these days. (Well, maybe besides Sherlock. Oh, and take that The Big Bang Theory, you suck now.)
To all of those people out there who still haven’t watched it because you think it’s straight up wack: you’re right. Give it a chance, you might just learn a thing or two about the multiverse or time travel or aliens. In this case, wack is the best kind of compliment.
CULTURE (counter, pop, and otherwise) and the people who shape it.