Television Review – Rick and Morty: Season 5 Episode One

Mort Dinner Rick Andre

Since the breakthrough success of Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon’s frantic brainchild Rick and Morty in 2013, each season has brought an increase in scale. With the fractured time opening of season two, the body-hopping prison break in season three and the death crystal led mayhem of season four, there has been an increasing sense that the show has been trying too hard to top itself. Comparatively, the opener for season five isn’t like the grand events that we have come to expect from previous seasons. Mort Dinner Rick Andre instead takes us on a smaller, more understated adventure, feeling much more like a regular episode of the show.

The episode essentially boils down to Rick having dinner with his sexually charged nemesis Mr. Nimbus while Morty hosts a date with his on-again off-again love interest Jessica, though with the usual Rick and Morty sci-fi spin. In preparation for the dinner Rick has Morty go into a Narnia-esque world where time moves at an accelerated rate, in order to age wine to serve at dinner. Following an honest mistake, Morty shapes the pocket world into one that despises him. The various peaks we get into the rapidly evolving pocket world are the highlights of the episode. The dark, stylish and incredibly funny execution of the episode’s core concept is Rick and Morty at its best, though it did struggle with occasional predictability. Once we see the old man helping Morty to carry the wine through the portal between the two worlds, it becomes fairly obvious how the rest of the episode is going to pan out.

In previous season openers both Rick and Morty have their own self-contained, yet equally enjoyable adventures, whereas in this episode there is an overwhelming tilt towards Morty. While Rick taking a back seat to Morty is a welcome change, it does leave Rick feeling under utilised. Though the inclusion of Mr. Nimbus to Rick’s story provides some funny moments, there just isn’t enough momentum in their side of the episode and the laughs suffer for it. That’s not to say that there aren’t laughs to be had, Mr Nimbus’ display of how he can control the police was simply hilarious. However, in comparison to Morty’s storyline the whole thing just kind of falls flat. The largest injustice from the episode is Summer’s absence from it, as a character who has been frequently side-lined for the titular duo it was disappointing to see this trend continue.

All in all the Rick and Morty returns with another successful season opener that packs a whole lot of high concept science fiction into a short runtime, despite not being the laugh a minute thrill ride as previous seasons.

★★★1/2

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