Thursday, 22 June 2017

Give it a Chance: Rick and Morty


(Image found at: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/adult-swim-orders-live-action-893243)

Most people have heard of Rick and Morty by now, whether it be from small clips on social media, a friend ranting and raving about it or in references you don't understand and then promptly informed 'it's from Rick and Morty, you should watch it!'. Well, you should. The big off-putting factor of Rick and Morty for those who have ruled out watching it is because it's an adult cartoon. The connotations of an adult cartoon mostly imply vulgar jokes, non-realism, a bunch of sketch-like  'bits' between the plot of an episode and not much substance. Frankly, Rick and Morty throws that to the wind to the point you'll be grasping for more little bits and finding yourself guilt-ridden as you catch yourself laughing and realise, damn, this isn't actually bad at all. Think how big and unlikely The Simpsons emerged originally as an adult cartoon and add a little extra funky.

The trick of it lies within the intelligence of the humour. No, really. Rick and Morty may in fact be all of those stereotypes, except lacking substance, but it has pushed onward by what is essentially going to end up an iconic comedy duo, whether it's labelled a cartoon or not. A lot of the script and how lines are delivered is improvised and both main characters are voiced astoundingly by the same voice actor, Justin Roiland.

The relationship between the title characters is undeniably unique and nothing you'll be familiar with but something you'd like to familiarise with. Rick, the dubbed 'smartest man in the universe' scientist and grandfather of the Smith family and his terrified, socially anxious grandson Morty. Sounds more in-depth than you expected already huh? That's barely scratched the surface of what drives the series. This show is sci-fi as fuck and I couldn't think of a more suiting way to describe it. It'll have you contemplating ridiculous theories and accepting the diversity of what science fiction and the universe could provide us with as a template idea to an ingenious cartoon comedy.


(And of course, they feature in an extended The Simpsons intro. Image found at:  http://uproxx.com/sepinwall/rick-morty-invade-the-simpsons-couch-gag/)

However, that's just one side of the family, because as the best sit-coms go, you really do need the diversity of a group or family unit to really satisfy your funny and the Smith family does just that. Morty has an older, late-teens sister called Summer played by Spencer Grammer, his mother Beth, played by none other than your favourite Scrubs misfit Elliot otherwise known as Sarah Chalke. Lest we forget the most underrated foolishly flustered Smith, Jerry, who is surrounded by a family of geniuses leaving him, well, let's say trying to keep up. Jerry is played by the very experienced and recognisable voice actor Chris Parnell.

So intelligent comedy and diverse group have been checked and where the show really wraps it's arms around you is in the emotional sequences, because at the end of the day, the Smiths are a family and they love each other. Rick, being the smartest man in the universe, poses a major threat to the likes of the government or the pentagon, but not the lame one here on earth. Rick and Morty can really pack an emotional punch and a very pure sense of family within the intricate storytelling. You'll go straight from a butt joke into Johnny Cash - Hurt and how many times have you experienced that emotional swerve before? Rick and Morty is an amazing show and of course, at times it can go very sour in the humour and the odd joke here and there won't connect, the main character is very outwardly insensitive to say the least but it's nonetheless amusing. I'd say to those who have watched a little and thought it wasn't for them, to return to it and really notice the details of animated acting and that relationships are surprisingly key to the comedic impact of this show, so give it a chance!


(Image found at: https://blog.animationstudies.org/?p=1937)

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