A series of film reviews and opinion pieces from a film student and all round movie lover! Happy reading!
Release: 2013 – 2014
Created By: Dan Harmen and Justin Roiland
Running Time: 21 Minutes
One of the biggest breaths of fresh air to emerge from the realms of animation is without a doubt Dan Harmen and Justin Roiland’s Rick And Morty. Ever so loosely based off the adventures of Doc and Marty from the Back To The Future trilogy, Rick And Morty is about an insane, eccentric and supremely smart scientist grandfather and his nervous, impressionable and slightly less intellectual grandson.
Instead of travelling back and forth through time, Rick and Morty venture into alternate, parallel and undiscovered dimensions, encountering quite literally every conceivable character in equally as unimaginable circumstances. The medium of animation allows for a limitless world of possibilities, however few shows have taken such a luxury on board and presented something incredibly stupid but genius all the same.
Where a Miyazaki anime will explore infinite possibilities within a narrative through metaphor and symbol, Rick And Morty uses said freedom to establish the zaniest scenarios, only to conclude or resolve them in the most ridiculous fashion, all the while rubbing the audience’s face in it’s self-awareness.
What is such an impressive quality about Rick And Morty is the chemistry between the leads. Rick, the guiltily loveable protagonist is careless, self-absorbed and rude beyond compare, however his free spirited attitude and raucous antics make for some unrivalled comedy gold. Furthermore, the subtleties within his presentation make the character even more engaging.
For example, the amount of times Rick burps mid-sentence not only furthers his trait of being an alcoholic, it makes for a guaranteed laugh every time and is something unique. His guidance of young Morty is the most important quality in Rick’s possession.
Leaving him behind, using him as bait or even verbally abusing him whenever he gets the chance, the malicious attitude of Rick is really a facade that covers a stubborn man’s love for his grandson. Although the show is built upon the foundation of obscure random comedy, the show possesses sporadic moments of poignancy, adding depth and dimension (pun not intended) to the characters.
The way in which the genre of comedy has transformed in the modern era through the tremendous success and influence of properties such as South Park has spawned shows in the similar vein as Rick And Morty. Series such as Archer, Adventure Time, BoJack Horseman and Bob’s Burgers are just a selection of shows that posses a very obscure but thought out structure.
Comedy has become more than fart jokes and slapstick antics, it has evolved into something somewhat indescribable, at least in the world of animation. Whatever the definition may be, Rick And Morty is an example of an idea that it capitalising on a turning point of a genre, shedding new light of niche aspects of comedy, all the while staying true to what makes comedy fundamentally funny and mass marketable.
Season 1 was a monumental success. Introducing us to the immeasurably obscene escapades of two ridiculous characters, Rick And Morty is unlike anything else out there.
Obscure, rude and rather uncouth, Rick And Morty is not like others with the intent to shock and offend. It has genuine heart and a clever balance of ludicrousness and intelligence, making it one of the best modern comedies from the last decade.