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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Comedy > Satire > TV > Rick and Morty: Season 1 (2013 - 2014/Warner Bros/Adult Swim Blu-ray)

Rick and Morty: Season 1 (2013 - 2014/Warner Bros/Adult Swim Blu-ray)

Picture: A- Sound: B Extras: C+ Episodes: B+

Adult Swim in recent history has been a mixed bag in terms of quality programming, but every now and then a true gem shines through. A new series that demonstrated promise from the very first episode was Rick and Morty; the story of a mad (drunken) scientist and his dimwitted, but loyal grandson Morty.

The series was created by Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland, with Roiland being the voice talent behind both Rick and Morty. Rick, the aforementioned alcoholic mad scientist, like a hurricane has entered into Morty's life; disrupting the order of things and taking (forcing) him on dangerous, nonsensical adventures. These adventures seemingly only benefit Rick; as they fuel his own need for alcohol, revenge, or personal gain; all shrouded in the guise of science.

Now without a doubt Rick is a genius; having the ability to whip up an invention in a matter of seconds or solve any problem with ease. It is the manner in which he uses his powers that make him truly diabolical. In Season One, we are treated to such misadventures as Rick and Morty traveling through space and alternate universes having a variety of run-ins with strange and at times dangerous characters. As if this wasn't stressful enough for the neurotic Morty, his home life isn't exactly stable as he battles an idiotic/egocentric father (Jerry; voiced by Chris Parnell), a superficial teenage sister (Summer; voiced by Spencer Grammer), and a horse cardiac surgeon mother (Beth; voiced by Sarah Chalke).

The series is an obvious parody of the Marty McFly/Doc Brown relationship from Back to the Future; and the creators do it exceedingly well. They manage to touch on the odd relationship of a mad scientist and young boy (though in this case a grandfather/grandson relationship as well); taking it over the top to make remarkably uncomfortable situations (mostly for Morty). The level of creativity is equally impressive as the premise of space travel and dimension jumping leave the plot open for endless possibilities.

The series is 'laugh out loud' hilarious as it pushes the envelope on already uncomfortable situations; in the end making them brilliantly executed, creating an animated series like nothing before.

The First Season is composed of eleven, half hour episodes featuring a host of oddities and guest star voices. Guest stars to date have included the likes of Dana Carvey and David Cross; with more planned for the future.

The first eleven episodes include:

  • Pilot

  • Lawnmower Dog

  • Anatomy Park

  • M. Night Shaym-Aliens!

  • Meeseeks and Destroy

  • Rick Potion #9

  • Raising Gazorpazorp

  • Rixty Minutes

  • Something Ricked this way Comes

  • Close Rick Counters of the Rick Kind

  • Ricksy Business

The technical features on this Blu-ray set are very well done. The picture is a 1.77 X 1, VC-1 Encoded 1080p High Definition that is crisp, clean, and clear with minimal issues. Colors are vibrant throughout and dark, inky blacks frame each sequence well; with no digital noise/compression to note. The sound is a lossless 5.1 Dolby True-HD that gets the job done, but not as boisterous as one would hope for such a lively series. Again a clean and clear track, utilizing full speaker ranger for certain action sequences and the musical score, but little else.

Extras include:

  • Audio commentaries on all 1 Episodes

    • Justin Roiland, Dan Harmon, and other cast/crew members give entertaining insight into the process of making Rick and Morty. WHY SO ENTERTAINING? Well Roiland and Harmon are drunk throughout; allowing for many uncomfortable and revealing moments.

  • 3 Guest Commentaries

    • From writers of The Walking Dead, Adventure Time, and The Simpsons

  • Deleted Scenes

    • Nothing gained or lossed be not including these sequences (seen here in animatic form).

  • Animatics

  • Behind the Scenes

A great series that will only get better with time... and space!

- Michael P. Dougherty II


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