SPOILERS FOR ‘RICK AND MORTY’ 6×01
The final season of ‘Rick and Morty’ begins almost exactly where we left off last year. And how could it not be so? ‘Rick and Morty’ season 5 finale ended with some pretty reveals squanchincluded Evil Morty’s ultimate goal, as well as the truth behind Diane’s death. But wait. There is more!
The past seasons of ‘Rick and Morty’, one of the best science fiction series in history, have been quite stingy when it comes to canon and big revealsSo imagine our surprise when the first episode of season six doubled down on all of this with some even bigger reveals.
Bad Rick, or “Weird Rick”that our Rick has been chasing for decades, the one that killed our Rick’s wife, is actually “our” biological Rick.
The absent grandfather of the original Morty’s family that we met at the beginning of the first season is, in fact, Weird Rick, the killer, and our Rick took his place after the death of his own family at the hands of Weird Rick. And you thought “Wubba lubba dub dub” was a tongue twister…
That’s a pretty big, almost endless mess, one that Rick and Morty could have jumped into in the past to reset. But it seems that we’re entering a new era, one where canon matters more than ever.
During a recent round table with DigitalSpyexecutive producer Justin Roiland joked that another reboot is “always on the table,” before admitting that he “don’t know how to back down some of the shit done in this sixth season“.
Roland added: “We’re basically canonically sealing a couple of things in season six that maybe we weren’t sure if they were real or not in season three.”
It’s a bold move for the show, and a far cry from all the times Rick and Morty have misled fans over the years.
Crucially, however, this change is also badly needed.
In a universe where nothing really matters, where a new family can replace yours in the blink of an eye, Rick’s hilarious affinity for all things nihilistic can only get you so far. After a while, fans begin to yearn for a real connection beyond jokeswhich is something co-creator Dan Harmon weighed in with during our own roundtable discussion.
“We knew that if we just hit the reset button at the top, it would be considered lazy or unsatisfying,” Harmon said. “People have to wait a long time between seasons“.
“And then there’s another consideration, which is, ‘OK, when is your show allowed to be so canonically lenient? Do you ever have to stop considering the hypothetical new viewer who comes off the street and starts with episode 6×01 of ‘Rick and Morty’.”
“Let’s do this for everyone who’s been waiting“, he added. “Let’s finish this story and start our season“.
However, the story is not over yet. By positioning Weird Rick as the show’s new big villainthe writers have anchored this entire season with their most emotional line yet.
As producer Scott Marder pointed out to us, Diane’s death “has been Rick’s engine that has been driving him through this entire serieseven when we didn’t know that was the case. Evil Morty also shared a connection to the Sanchez family, of course, but this one is far more personal than anything we’ve seen on the show so far.
To really drive home that point, the first post-credits scene of season six eschews the usual nonsense such scenes are known for and instead chooses a much more chilling encounter between Weird Rick and Jerry from the “Cronenberg” universe (yes, those are the official names of these charactersin case you were wondering).
In the closing moments of the premiere, the Cronenbergian Jerry tries to team up with Weird Rick, because that’s what bad guys do. Except Weird Rick isn’t your typical villain, so he shoots Jerry in the stomach with a laser.
“Why are you here?” asks a dying Jerry Cronenbergian. To which Weird Rick replies: “Dude, I’ve been asking myself the exact same question.“.
So yes, the questions and mysteries that have become the bread and butter of this show will continue to define ‘Rick and Morty’ in season six and beyond: ‘Rick and Morty’ has a clearer vision than ever.