Adult Swim’s third Rick and Morty anime short is arguably better than the first seven episodes of season 5 put together.

Rick and morty arguably not as good as it used to be. During its first three seasons, the Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland cartoon was one of the funniest and most creative series on television, but its quality began to decline when Adult Swim decided to order seven seasons at a time. Season 4 still had impressive ups and downs (“Never Ricking Morty”, “The Vat of Acid Episode”) but the lows (“One Crew over the Cuckoo’s Morty”, “Claw and Hoarder: Special Ricktim’s Morty”) were lower. Seven episodes in season 5, the average quality has dropped further without any Really great episodes (the season premiere, “Mort Dinner Rick Andre”, is closer).

While the core program has become more formulated, a growing number of Rick and morty Short films by artists from around the world have kept alive the adventurous spirit of the first seasons. There was the Australian April Fools joke “Bushworld Adventures”, the pixel art adventure “Rick and Morty in the Eternal Nightmare Machine” and now three anime shorts. The first, “Samurai and Shogun”, was a single Lone wolf and cub parody, but the second, “Rick and Morty vs. Genocider”, was a real mental screw that played on the lore of the series in a fresh and surprisingly sweet way.

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Adult Swim just released a third Rick and morty anime short, titled “Summer Meets God (Rick Meets Evil)”, to coincide with the premiere of the anime parody episode of the main show “Gotron Jerrysis Rickvangelion.” Written and directed by Takashi Sano, who also made “Rick and Morty vs. Genocider,” the new short film uses the series GoLion / Voltron mech Gotron parody for the purpose of a more suggestive and twisted story than the episode that premiered next door.

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“Summer Meets God (Rick Meets Evil)” contains so many ideas in its 15-minute time frame that it can be difficult to keep track of it the first time it is seen, but it is the kind of anime so strangely compelling that you will want to see it again. . The basic setup: Summer is dating an artificial intelligence named Delta, Jerry has been selected for a special eugenic “treatment” and Rick is busy plotting the end of human civilization. These three plots intersect in unexpected ways, with philosophical arguments, dirty jokes, mecha battles, and the entirety of the story coming into play.

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While “Rick and Morty vs. Genocider” seemed like a less cynical version of Rick and morty, “Summer Meets God (Rick Meets Evil)” is somewhat more cynical than the main show. He is the most unmistakably evil Rick has ever been, manipulating all members of his family towards apocalyptic ends. However, it also allows the Smiths to challenge Rick’s attitudes in their own way. Similar to a growing number of episodes in recent seasons, the short involves a prominent incest joke, but this actually works on a level beyond gross value, connecting with the characters’ inherent tragedy.

The two of Takashi Sano Rick and morty Anime short films are among the best content to emerge from Rick and mortypopularity, topping much of season 4 and possibly all of season 5 thus far. With just over a year between the premieres of “Rick and Morty vs. Genocider” and “Summer Meets God (Rick Meets Evil)”, it seems possible that Sano’s shorts will become an annual gift for Rick and morty fans. If the shorts maintain their high quality and the show itself continues to lose steam, then these new anime installments could justify more excitement than the new seasons of the main series.

Rick and Morty’s interdimensional exploits continue in the new episodes of season 5, airing Sundays at 11 p.m. ET on Adult Swim.

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