I recently got caught up on Rick & Morty, and despite being enthralled by every second of the show and realizing it’s maybe one of the great works of American TV, I also feel uncomfortable watching it. It’s incredibly bleak, for one thing; the essential meaninglessness of… everything is always the pole star the show comes back to to.
Plus, this angle proposed by this piece — that there’s a dysfunctional, entitled male core to the show — definitely resonates with me. I.e., I would be really scared to meet anyone who loves the show without reservation.
If you’ve been wondering why Jordan B. Peterson, the Canadian professor, guru of modern masculinity, and author of 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, has been selling so many books and filling so many theaters, this is why. Rick and Morty is why. It’s no surprise, really, that a small and well-documented subset of the Rick and Morty fan base exhibits terrible, snickering, alienated-white-male troll behavior. The female writers who were hired for the show’s third season were infamously harassed and abused by this mob. “I loathe these people,” co-creator Harmon commented at the time. “It fucking sucks.” But it makes sense: Rick Sanchez himself is a time-troll, a transgressive brain, an avatar of barbed aloneness and free-floating male scorn.