Season five of Rick and Morty is now streaming on Netflix, allowing fans and viewers to follow the latest adventures of notorious scientist Rick and his teenage grandson Morty. The show is well known for its blend of science-fiction adventures and themes, dark humour, its quality character development and its unique animation and narrative style. Rick and Morty debuted in 2013 and it has made an impact as another eminent adult animation, with positive TV ratings and acclaimed awards, cool merchandise and it’s large presence within internet culture, but has its latest season lived up to the success of beloved earlier seasons?
This season of Rick and Morty presents less serialised episodes when compared to season three, focusing on more stand-alone episodes for the fifth season. This approach to focus primarily on independent adventures for most episodes is what many viewers and fans of the show expect, as the show aims to ideally balance continuity with independent stories with the familiar duo and the rest of the Smith family and their adventures. Rick and Morty doesn’t need to be strictly chronological to be entertaining or engaging, in fact some of the best episodes in the shows history have been standalone adventures. We however do get a closer look at Evil Morty in the season five finale, along with segments of Rick’s backstory throughout.
Season five establishes a slow change in Morty’s relationship with Rick, this is best presented in the ninth episode (Forgetting Sarick Mortshall) which explores the pair splitting and pondering the end of their famous partnership. This proposed change presents the shows key focus on their relationship, and primarily with Morty’s development in the last two seasons as he begins to become more independent and questioning of Rick’s control over him and their adventures.
This seasons eighth episode (Rickternal Friendshine of the Spotless Mort) explores Rick’s relationship with Birdperson as he attempts to bring his friend back to life by literally getting inside his head and they both physically re-explore key memories that also offers us a further look at Rick and his relationship with his best friend. The best character development this season is Summer, who has played a more active role in the stories primary adventures in recent episodes. She has developed to not only accompany the pair on daring journeys, but she has taking on a more leading and heroic role in the latest episodes. With Beth and Jerry also becoming more engaged with Rick’s adventures and moving beyond just the parental figures found in the first three seasons.
While season five might not have the same quality line-up of extended new characters (like Mr. Meeseeks or Glootie) or as many new quotable catchphrases, Rick and Morty still has a lot to offer its viewers and fans for the future. This season is proof that it’s not mimicking the first two seasons success, but instead presenting gradual changes as the show matures going forward for character development, the unique storytelling and for the audience to follow the show at its most comfortable level built on humour and engagement, science fiction and quality episodic adventures.
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