It’s safe to say most animated shows on TV today are fully intended for adults, sometimes even more so than mature-themed live-action shows. Other than Family Guy (and a few others), nowhere is a better example of this than Rick and Morty. As strangely twisted as it is, the bizarre comic situations do have a social point.
Only because it has a more complex underlying layer has it gained a loyal following. Airing on Adult Swim for three seasons, it’s best to describe the show as demented sci-fi, with a little not to Back to the Future. Nobody can see these two characters without thinking of Doc Brown and Marty McFly, though comparisons stop there.
A fourth season is coming, despite some potential creative roadblocks.
Parody can sometimes morph into an even more brilliant idea
Not too often do you see a parody of a pop culture movie evolve into something wholly original on its own. This is exactly what happened with Rick and Morty by starting off as a short film parody of Back to the Future. Known then as The Real Animated Adventures of Doc and Mharti, the content in this is definitely not for those easily offended. Yes, it’s even sicker than the later series became, but gives a good example of how a simple parody can grow into something funnier and more inventive.
It’s a wonder creators Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon haven’t been sued by Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis for the obvious connections. Nevertheless, changing the character names to Rick and Morty obviously helped adhere to parody laws.
Once the version of the show as we know it made it to Adult Swim, it immediately caught on for its inventive take on traversing the universe and visiting alternate dimensions for comic effect.
The use of jumbled timelines/existences also allows the show to open up new creative paths so it doesn’t have to maintain any specific continuity. Plus, don’t forget about all the fun hidden pop culture references fans scope out in each episode.
Season 4 is coming this year
Last year, Roiland and Harmon made a deal with Adult Swim to produce 70 more episodes of Rick and Morty, spread out over multiple seasons. This means a fourth season is already in the works and just received a November 2019 release date. Many people were hopeful the new season would come before the end of the year.
What to expect in a Season 4
A lot of A-list media have been turning to time travel and other mind-blowing scientific concepts to challenge viewers and bring a more entertaining quotient for demanding audiences. Avengers: Endgame is a good example of going this route as a way to bring more complexity to the grand finale of Phase Four.
Bringing an offbeat comedic edge to these concepts is what makes Rick and Morty such a standout, even if it’s clearly not for everybody. Most likely, Season 4 is going to delve even further into the scientific abyss these two characters visit in each episode.
All recent reports say Roiland/Harmon had a large list of ideas to help speed up their creative writing process. Just don’t count on it when their notorious break between Seasons 2 and 3 led to many wondering if they could keep up the pace of network TV.
As we’ve learned, however, shorter seasons almost always means better writing. Rick and Morty may have to revert to this again to avoid being rushed and tainting writing quality.
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