The Show You Should Be Watching: Rick & Morty

MovieBob

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The Show You Should Be Watching: Rick & Morty

MovieBob admits he was wrong. You'll need to read further to find out what topic has him confessing that he was "wronger than I've been in a long time."

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Silver Patriot

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I do not blame you for being so skeptical. Another comedy on Adult Swim? Premiering on Monday nights? I had no faith or interest in this series. Then I caught it one night and was like "Wait? This. . . this isn't half bad. Actually, this is pretty good."
 

Malconvoker

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I hadn't given much thought to this show, mostly because I just don't watch TV all that much, but I may go give this a try as soon as finals are over.
 

Darth_Payn

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Oh Lordy, I have seen that Cronenberg episode more times than I wanted too. It almost gave me a drinking problem on Rick's scale. One of my favorites is the episode with the multiverse of Ricks & Mortys. I like how this and The Venture Brothers have continuity and characters who change and have pathos, instead of pretty much very other Adult Swim original they play now (specifically, China, IL and Tim & Eric can go die in a fire).
I hope we get MovieBob HD columns about The Venture Bros. & Adventure Time!
 

Casual Shinji

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The appeal of this show is really the angle of 'Where the fuck is this gonna go..?' Each episode starts off with a simple enough sci-fi spoof, but then germinates into the most bizar and unimaginable situations.

I found it very similar to the manga Franken Fran, which also features a crazy character whose scientific abilities (in this case plastic surgery) are practically magic. And where each chapter starts off weird, and then proceeds to dive right off a cliff into fucked up, batshit lunacy.
 

MCerberus

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This is sci-fi adventure time. Silly premise, completely mad to the point where people can incorrectly label it "lol, random", strong continuity and world building promising a payoff later. The difference is that this is on Adult Swim, so it has leeway to get into a different set of dark messed up places.

Also, it's TV Tropes the show, so what's not to like.

edit- also the second-to-last episode is probably the best example of the mic-drop twist ending. The first time you were "what" and then the second time you see all of the subtle hints.
 

evilnancyreagan

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I just finished the first season a couple of weeks ago and I was really hoping to see it get some professional praise. I tip my fancy hat to you MovieBob, well played goodsir!

The episode Rixty Minutes needs an honorable mention. Even with the expected cronenburging shenanigans of Rick put on the back burner, the episode still manages to tell a personable story involving the more mundane aspects of the Smith household and ends it with a twist that surprisingly disarms us by exposing the series's unexpected softer side.
 

Ace Morologist

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My three favorite moments of the show:

The end of the first episode. Delirious, hilarious.

The bit Mr. Chipman describes in Meeseeks & Destroy when Rick's eyes narrow and you know he just figured everything out.

When strung-out, famous Jerry shows up at the house after the ridiculous police chase.

I'm glad I gave this show a shot, because I like it a whole lot better than I ever liked King of the Hill, Family Guy, The Cleveland Show, American Dad, The Venture Brothers and even Futurama.

--Morology!
 

MCerberus

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Ace Morologist said:
My three favorite moments of the show:
-snip-
I'm going to have to go with "Nobody exists on purpose, nobody really belongs anywhere, everybody's gonna die...Come watch tv?"
 

Ken_J

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Alright let's get this over with

"HI I'M MISTER MEESEEKS LOOK AT ME!!!"
 

Alterego-X

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I'm tired of so much of western animation being visually grotresque, mean-spiritedly ironic absurdist comedy, from kids' shows to adult ones.

MLP was good, but we could use a bit more New Sincerity, thank you very much.
 

MCerberus

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Alterego-X said:
I'm tired of so much of western animation being visually grotresque, mean-spiritedly ironic absurdist comedy, from kids' shows to adult ones.

MLP was good, but we could use a bit more New Sincerity, thank you very much.
Long story short, when Pokemon took over in the US, the 'second golden age' ended. This left us with a lot of 'designed by executives and focus test' series taking place of the Kids WB/Nick/Cartoon Cartoons. The pessimism and propensity for weird visuals are a direct rejection of this by cartoon makers.


Further elaboration follows, it'll get long.

However, certain people *cough*Nickelodeon who were around this stuff before it became normal didn't realize when it can work. That's how Spongebob's shuffling zombie corpse works (meanness, bad visuals instead of writing and characters)

When it does work though, the harshness of the world and visuals increases the effect of the happy moments. It's part of the "uncanny valley" effect, where the human-like things about a non-human make it seem more human. Absurd humor in western animation is something you just have to get used to, since it's always been there and isn't going away.

We also get the "Family Guy" effect, where mean-spirited stupidity overpowers the good portions of a show. It's pretty much infected all of the Fox Shows except "Bob's Burgers", with once real characters losing everything that made them remotely relatable because the network doesn't understand their own formula.

If we use this show, a surface glance just says 'mean jerk show with nothing but in-jokes'. Watch it, and it's the story of a seemingly irredeemable man actually finding redemption with his family. If you take your eyes off of Rick and Morty it WILL punch you in the gut. It's funny, but there's substance behind it.

It's also perfectly valid to want a more restrained but optimistic 'popcorn' cartoon, with not a lot really going on plot-wise but a decent ride in the vein of Tiny Toons or KND. We don't have any of those right now (except maybe Clarence. I still don't know what to think of that show)
 
Jan 10, 2013
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Glad to see that show get some critical acclaim.
Then again, I might be biased. Cyril from Archer voices the dad and since I maintain that Archer is the best thing animation has brought the civilised world, that's an instant win in my book.
 

balladbird

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I found the show surprisingly watchable, if not especially laudable myself.

When I saw the pilot, I was far from impressed. I had no idea how they were going to stretch the one-joke premise of "lampoon the relationship between Marty and Doc Brown from Back to the Future" into an entire series, and Rick's belching between words was (and still is) one of the most annoying verbal tics ever given to a character in the history of forever.

I watched a few episodes after that, though, and warmed up to it a little. the writing can be really clever when it wants to be, and the show has a legitimate heart from time to time.

Good article!
 

Klagermeister

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Ken_J said:
Alright let's get this over with

"HI I'M MISTER MEESEEKS LOOK AT ME!!!"
HI MISTER MEESEEKS I'M MISTER MEESEEKS!
CAN YOU HELP ME TAKE TWO STROKES OFF JERRY'S GOLF GAME?

I love this show and I'm watching the reruns still laughing my ass off at all the amazing humor.

And I'm gonna need you to put em waaaaay up inside your butthole, Morty.
 

truckspond

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Well, after being forced to turn to youtube reuploads because they have blocked the show in Australia and watching a few minutes of the pilot it's not really my kind of comedy. Between that and the fact they are in full support of useless and pointless geo-blocking of content I see no reason to watch the show. However the rushed licensed adventure can be played here (Don't ask me why they let Australa play the game but not watch the show!) and seems to do what it says on the tin with a lot of meta humor.
 

Aerosteam

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If anyone here didn't know, the guy who does the voices of Rick and Morty also does Lemongrab's voice from Adventure Time. :D
 

Saltyk

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I had a similar experience to Bob. I saw a few adds for the show and wasn't impressed. It seemed to start out like a normal ad, but then Rick and Morty appear with Rich saying he has to blow up the ad before it gives people a bad impression much to Morty's horror. It didn't really appeal to me.

But I ended up seeing it due to the sheer availability of everything on the internet and was pleasantly surprised. I usually give shows three episodes before I either get invested or turn away. Rick and Morty got me within the first episode.

And there were several great episodes that followed. Meeseeks and Destroy. M Night Shaym-Aliens. Something Ricked This Way Comes. One episode had Rick and Morty trying to Incept (like the movie) Morty's teacher to give him A's while the rest of the family dealt with the now super intelligent family dog.

If you haven't given the show a chance, here's a clip to wet your appetite.

 

Ldude893

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Alterego-X said:
I'm tired of so much of western animation being visually grotresque, mean-spiritedly ironic absurdist comedy, from kids' shows to adult ones.

MLP was good, but we could use a bit more New Sincerity, thank you very much.
I don't know many current shows that have the same optimism as MLP while being high quality and NOT batshit insane.

Although now you mention it, I do know a certain underrated Disney animated show that just so happens to be a reincarnation of the classic Simpsons, but with more sincerity, great characters, an element of supernatural mystery and gorgeous eye-watering animation. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravity_Falls]

Here's the intro, [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtlX1pujSr4] in case you're wondering.