Due to its surreal sense of humor, colorful cast of characters, and endless narrative possibilities, Adult Swim’s monster hit dimension-hopping sci-fi animated comedy Rick and Morty is one of the most quotable TV shows on the air. The series juggles jokes with philosophies, and sometimes combines the two brilliantly.
The show’s idiosyncratic and loose comedic style is a result of a lot of improvisation done by the voice actors – particularly Justin Roiland, who plays both of the title characters – in the studio while they’re recording their lines. Here are The 10 Best Rick and Morty quotes that’ll leave you laughing.
10 On love
“Listen, Morty, I hate to break it to you, but what people call love is just a chemical reaction that compels animals to breed. It hits hard, Morty, then it slowly fades, leaving you stranded in a failing marriage. I did it. Your parents are gonna do it. Break the cycle, Morty. Rise above. Focus on science.”
There are very few TV shows whose most famous quote about love is this depressing. Rick lays out the science behind love and how what we think is romance is really just delusion. These are harsh words, but some of us need to hear them.
9 On reappropriating slurs
“What up, my glip-glops?”
Seconds after explaining to Summer that “glip-glop” is an offensive term for Traflorkians, Rick uses it to refer to a bunch of them. He says this word is really, really offensive. He even uses other, Earthbound slurs as a frame of reference for Summer – he says it’s like “the N-word and the C-word had a baby, and that baby was raised by all the bad words for Jews.” And still, the second a group of Traflorkians walk into the party, Rick yells out, “What up, my glip-glops?” What’s so special about Rick that he gets to say it and Summer doesn’t?
8 On the futility of existing
“Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. We’re all going to die. Come watch TV.”
This iconic, nihilistic line is Morty’s counter-argument to all of those people who say that to watch TV is to waste your life. Should you really be out there, living life to the full? Not according to Morty. Since he had to bury his own corpse in the backyard when he and Rick permanently relocated to another dimension, he’s had a new, much more pessimistic attitude towards the world. He sums it up perfectly in the season 1 episode “Rixty Minutes” when he explains the futility of existence to Summer.
7 Interdimensional pizza toppings
“Yeah, I’d like to order one large phone with extra phones, please.” “Cell phone. No-no-no-no, rotary! And pay phone on half.”
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The different dimensions in Rick and Morty are always a head-trip, but rarely more than these three similar dimensions in “Close Rick-counters of the Rick Kind.” Each time Rick and Morty visit one, it’s the same situation, yet vastly different. Pizza slices sitting on chairs order a people pizza on the phone. Then phones sitting on pizza slices order a chair pizza on a person phone. Then, last but not least, chairs sitting on people order a phone pizza on a pizza phone.
6 On smuggling rare seeds
“You gotta do it for Grandpa, Morty. You gotta put these seeds inside your butt.”
There really is no limit to what Rick will ask Morty to do for him. When he wants to bring home some rare seeds he finds in another dimension, then he simply asks Morty to put them up his butt. And since Morty is so sad and desperate for approval, he won’t put up much of a fight and will allow that to happen after not much convincing. It’s the least pleasant way to become an intergalactic smuggler like Han Solo.
5 Gonorrhea vs. a T-rex
“Don’t move. Gonorrhea can’t see us if we don’t move...Wait! I was wrong! I was thinking of a T-rex.”
This line is the kind of absurdist non-sequitur that makes Rick and Morty such an unusual delight. Gonorrhea and T-rexes are two very different things.
John Oliver brought the same deadpan delivery to his one-off character Dr. Bloom in the season 1 episode “Anatomy Park” that he brought to his recurring character Ian Duncan in Dan Harmon’s previous show, Community. He’ll be doing the same later this year in the role of Zazu in Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of The Lion King.
4 On Wall Street
“You ever hear about Wall Street, Morty? You know what those guys do in their fancy boardrooms? They take their balls and they dip them in cocaine and wipe them all over each other.”
While Rick’s vivid description of what goes on in the boardrooms of Wall Street is clearly meant as an exaggeration, we’re not so sure after seeing the antics of Jordan Belfort and co in Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street. Maybe that is what they do. It stands to reason that if they did, they wouldn’t go blabbing about it. Maybe Rick is onto something after all.
3 Summer’s warped stance on the Devil
“So what if he’s the Devil, Rick? At least the Devil has a job. At least he’s active in the community.”
What point is Summer trying to make here, exactly? She’s definitely on the Devil’s side, but is this a Satanist stance or an anti-religious stance? She suggests she’s interested in making sure the machine of capitalism remains well-oiled by chastising Rick for not having a job.
Does not having a job really make Rick worse than the Devil? Summer thinks so. This quote is, of course, from the episode “Something Ricked This Way Comes,” which was inspired by Stephen King’s Needful Things.
2 On traditions
“Traditionally, science fairs are a father-son thing.” “Well, scientifically, traditions are an idiot thing.”
Since the show is about Rick and Morty’s interdimensional travels, we rarely get to see Jerry and Morty working together as father and son. But when they do, they have a hilarious dynamic. Morty is really dumb, and yet he’s still not as dumb as his dad, who insists that Pluto is still a planet. Some people disagree that traditions really are “an idiot thing,” as they believe some of the world’s smartest people follow traditions. Still, none of those people are smarter than Rick, so...
1 On Pirates of the Pancreas
“If I sounded a little defensive, it’s because Pirates of the Pancreas was my baby. I got a lot of push-back when I pitched it, Morty. I guess I’m still a little defensive.”
“Anatomy Park” was a great premise for an episode, as Rick shrinks down Morty and sends him into the tiny theme park he’s built inside a homeless man’s body. His defense of the Pirates of the Pancreas ride is surprisingly relatable, as we’ve all gotten antsy over ideas we had that we thought were amazing that the rest of the group hated. Rick didn’t whitewash it either, which is admirable.