Rick and Morty: Infinite Universe Theory

A review from Hailey
 After last week’s class discussion on the Many Worlds theory, I immediately thought of the fairly recent sci-fi series Rick and Morty, a subversive animated show that chronicles the adventures of Rick, an alcoholic scientist, and his grandson, Morty. Like most of the science fiction we’ve studies in class, Rick and Morty examines the correlation between advanced scientific technology and interpersonal relationships. In one episode, Rick and Morty enter the dreams of a math teacher to ensure that Morty gets a passing grade and the family dog achieves sentience.
One episode that most aptly spins the notion of alternate realities practically on its head, “Close Rick Encounters of the Rick Kind,” acknowledges that there are an infinite number of possible realities. As a basic plot summary, most realities have a Rick, and due to their superior intelligence a lot of people are out to get him (them?). As Rick puts it, Wherever you find people with heads up their asses, someone wants a piece of your grandpa, and a lot of versions of me on different timelines had the same problem, so a few thousand versions of me had the ingenious idea of banding together like a herd of cattle or a school of fish or those people who answer questions on Yahoo! Answers…” So, there are an infinite number of universes with infinite versions of impossibly intelligent Ricks, who can not only move between these universes but also create a kind of union, a Rick-topia, run by the Council of Ricks.
  The impossible idea of being able to move between alternate realities is explored in a full extent through animation, which allows for a suspension of disbelief as cartoons as a medium inherently allows for impossibility. This allows for the full development of science-fiction tropes, while maintaining self-awareness and a joking tone that permeates the episodes.
Self-aware and deeply disturbing at times, Rick and Morty pushes infinite universe theory (and a variety of other science fiction staples) to a hilarious extent, and succeeds in doing so through use of animation as a platform.
Here’s the promo for “Close Rick and Encounters”
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One Response to Rick and Morty: Infinite Universe Theory

  1. Erik Chevrier-Langevin says:

    I can’t believe I did not think sooner to post or share something about Rick and Morty, I am super glad that someone posted about the show because it is definitely one of the funniest cartoons out there and their ideas on sci-fi elements, such as time travel, cloning, alternate dimension, and so on, are very relevant to our course (though they might be not so realistic). I would like to expand on Hailey’s ideas on alternate dimensions as the show do touch upon it on another episodes but in a different manner and incorporate other whacky sci-fi notions in it as well.

    In episode 6, “Rick Potion Number 9” (a clever play on words for “Love Potion Number 9), Morty wants his grandpa Rick to create him a love potion so a girl in his class can fall in love with him. Just as Morty slips the potion in the girl’s punch punch, while at a highschool dance, Rick is too late to tell him that he accidentally gave him the wrong potion which not only makes those who drink it fall in love with you but also want to mate with you for life. The power of the potion become airborne and spreads because it is apparently flu season and everyone is sick. After Rick tries to take hold of the situation and spray the whole town with an antidote it back-fires and turns everyone in mantis-like alien monsters that want to not only mate with Morty but kill him as well. This forces Rick and Morty to travel, via Rick’s fancy ship, to an alternate dimension where everyone has been unaltered. There is more to this “unaltered” universe but I do not wish to gives spoilers.

    Link to the episode: http://www.adultswim.com/videos/rick-and-morty/rick-potion-9/

    Though it is probably not that simple to just find one of infinite alternate universes and go to when stuck in a mantis infested, love potion dwelling hell, for the purpose of the story and (as Haily put it) to push the theory of “infinite universe theory (and a variety of other science fiction staples) to a hilarious extent”, it is just just all whacky entertaining.


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