[WARNING – This review contains SPOILERS.]
Rick Sanchez isn’t much for weddings, comparing them to funerals with cake. So he views his invitation to the wedding of his best friend Birdperson with the usual level of disdain Rick reserves for most things that are not getting laid, getting drunk or his grandson Morty. But he’s left with little choice but to attend after an accident with a courier droid results in Jerry being shipped to the planet Squanch.
Still, the rest of the Smith family is happy to attend. After all, Summer’s friend Tammy is the bride-to-be! Beth is happy to finally be getting her own adventure in space alongside the father who was absent for so much of her life. And it’s always a squanchy good time when Squanchy is around!
But Rick’s mysterious past is about to come and bite him in the butt. He’s said precious little about it to his family but has hinted at enough – the need for a high-tech security system and references to having a lot of enemies out there – to suggest that it was rather interesting in a euphemistic kind of way. As such, Rick can’t help but be paranoid about the whole affair.
And, as usual, Rick is right.
But being proven right and being the smartest man in the universe are cold comforts at the best of times. And they’re really not much help when a fascist galactic government is out for your head and you and the people you love (or, in Jerry’s case, the people you begrudgingly tolerate) are forced to go into hiding on a series of almost-but-not-quite Earth-like planets.
This is it, Rick and Morty fans. This is where it all changes. And nothing will be the same again.
For at least a year and a half. Two years at the most. Probably.
Only Rick and Morty could end its season with a dramatic cliffhanger and have it be a total surprise. One of the few consistent things about the series, ironically, has been its lack of continuity. At least, there hasn’t been much of an on-going story-line which required the viewers to see episodes in order. While past events have been referred to, it has never been in a way that required an encyclopedia knowledge of the show’s history, unlike most serialized television.
The Wedding Squanchers changes that and, as a result, changes the world of Rick and Morty. The first half of this episode is hilarious, filled with the usual nonsense regarding alien cultures, Beth and Jerry sniping at each other and Rick being Rick. And then we get the twist, with a reference to the first season’s conclusion and the first hint that what drove Rick to abandon his wife and daughter was about more than Rick’s essential nature as a total bastard.
The episode’s final sequence is a stylistic callback to the most dramatic moment of the series so far – the conclusion to Auto-Erotic Assimilation. Yet this episode’s ending is the stronger one, being a largely silent sequence set to a cover of Nine Inch Nail’s Hurt. It’s a powerful scene and a reminder that even the best comedies can find ways to touch our hearts…
… and then completely take the piss out of the moment by having Mr. Poopy Butthole show up and start berating a pizza delivery man over how awesome the conclusion was but how much it sucks that we’ll have to wait a year and a half for the resolution. And that is something I think everyone can agree on, whether you think the conclusion was truly meant to be squanchy or is just set-up for an even bigger squanch.