Grandfathers are supposed to be smart, genial figures of their grandchildren’s lives—perhaps somebody who teaches the children how you can fish, shares the joy of old films and, in fact, tells interminably lengthy stories.
But not all grandfathers fit that template. Some are less sensible and genial and more brilliant and sociopathic.
Take Rick Sanchez, for instance. After having been gone—like, really gone—for a couple of decades, the old man with the blue pointy hair instantly shows up on daughter Beth’s doorstep and moves in. It is apparent to everybody that he is not exactly, um, proper, if you realize what I mean. However perhaps that’s simply a side effect of his adventures—courtesy of a portal-creating gun— through an unfolding and chaotic multiverse.
He is seen things, man.
However nihilistic dystopian adventures are not any fun and not using a little company. While Beth is basically oblivious to Rick’s sci-fi shenanigans, her children—high-strung 14-12 months-old Morty and his rebellious, world weary older sister, Summer time—are all too aware of them. Morty has been a party to pert near every one among Grandpa Rick’s misadventures, and Summer season is more and more well traveled herself.
But when travel is meant to expand one’s mind in most case, Rick’s interdimensional hopping appears to be imploding on itself.
RICK ROLLING THE WRONG WAY
Rick and Morty has earned, within the words of Wikipedia, “universal acclaim,” boasting a 100% positive evaluate rating on, well, whatever score site you’d like to use. Besides ours, of course. So Wikipedia should amend its take to “near universal acclaim,” as now we have some nits to pick with Rick and Morty.
This is to not say that the show is not clever, or well written, and even funny. It might probably be. Nevertheless it can also be incredibly bleak and darkish and problematic and troubling. And Rick is … how can we put this gently … a big ol’ jerk.
It’s not my opinion. He’s purported to be a jerk. The show has given Morty’s blue-haired grandpa signs of pretty much each misanthropic malady and psychotic tic known to humankind.
“Now, listen,” he tells Morty and Summer season throughout an all-too-typical coronary heart-to-heart talk, “I know the two of you are very totally different from one another in lots of ways, however you must understand that as far as Grandpa’s concerned, you are each pieces of (bleep)! Yeah. I can prove it mathematically.”
Grandpa Rick has little regard for household, on condition that the infinite multiverse contains more family members than he can possibly count. He calls marriage “funerals with cake,” and cares not a whit about his daughter, Beth, and her husband, Jerry, or the best way they choose to mother or father their kids.
And Rick’s bleak worldview permeates your complete show. Even Morty, a more sympathetic character who seems to truly care for these round him, is infected by his grandfather’s godless, existential nihilism. “Nobody exists on function,” Morty tells his sister. “Nobody belongs anywhere, everybody’s going to die. Come watch TV.”
Typically the show hints at something akin to a coronary heart, however let’s face it: When it comes to its worldview, Rick and Morty is The Simpsons as written by Nietzshe, shortly after he went insane.
But even if Rick and Morty had all of the glowing positivity of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, the content material would still be enough to make it superlatively problematic.
On any given episode, animated characters may have their arms ripped off or their heads smashed in or, perhaps, have their heads smashed in with their own ripped-off arms. Animated blood falls like rain in Seattle. And Rick and Morty’s not above showing a bit of animated skin, either. Or a lot. And even sexual interludes.
The show is rated TV-14, nevertheless it really gets that by means of technicality. Some bad language (f-words and s-words, principally) is bleeped on Cartoon Network’s late-night time Adult Swim block of programming, however it’s fairly obvious from the context what those words are.
I might wish to say it’s a shame Rick and Morty did not throttle back on its content material a bit—that, if it had performed so, the show would be much better. However that may be a lie. This is the sort of show where gratuitous content material, shock and nihilism are all part of the purpose—a piece of its “charm,” for those who will. It is not a series that may be cleaned up with a censoring service or even handed use of a quick-forward button. The real shame is that the show’s kinda humorous … and that it is nonetheless so bad.
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