The Best Movie Parody From Every Season of ‘Rick and Morty’
“Are you doing a Die Hard?” the obviously Hans Gruber-inspired alien asks Summer via walkie-talkie. “Maybe,” Rick’s niece replies. “Are you?” The alien admits that he too is doing a Die Hard-inspired takeover of the Blips and Chitz arcade, and it is up to Summer — who’s never seen the Bruce Willis thriller — to master the movie’s tropes and take the alien down.
Nearly every show on television has movie parody episodes, but there’s something particularly special about the way Rick and Morty does it. With its meta, fourth-wall-breaking brand of comedy, a character can spoof Die Hard or Ocean’s Twelve while also poking fun at their lack of originality, which offers a whole new spin on the concept.
Movie parodies and pop-culture references are baked into each and every Rick and Morty — the whole series is a goof on Back to the Future, after all — but there are some episodes where the writers pull out all the stops and dedicate all 22 minutes to goofing on one movie, resulting in some of the finest episodes of the series.
Below you’ll find the best movie parody in each of Rick and Morty’s six seasons. Let’s get into it — Wubbalubba-dub-dub!
Season One: ‘Ricksy Business’
The Movie: Titanic
The Parody: Following the plot of Titanic while simultaneously nodding to Risky Business, this episode features the diabolical threesome of Rick, Morty and Summer throwing a huge multidimensional party while Jerry takes a trip and lives out his dream of being on the Titanic with Beth. The party rages on at home while Beth abandons Jerry at the last minute to… read.
As for Jerry, he ends up accompanied by the ship’s maid who turns out to be a horned-up psycho wanting to live out every detail of the James Cameron movie, including the infamous handprint scene, which wasn’t nearly as consensual as the one with Leo and Kate.
Season Two: ‘Look Who’s Purging Now’
The Movie: The Purge
The Parody: After landing on a “purge planet” that allows all crimes to be legal for 24 hours, Rick convinces Morty to stick around and check out the action. When Morty falls for a damsel in distress, Rick picks her up against his will and the pair end up getting screwed over as she steals their ship and leaves them in a lurch. This one really takes us for a ride as Rick and Morty kill just about everyone on the planet in order to survive.
Season Three: ‘Vindicators 3: The Return of World Ender’
The Movie: Avengers
The Parody: Rick and Morty takes aim at the Marvel formula with a genuine mockery of Avengers, right down to the symbol for the team — a “V” in the Avengers font. After receiving the call to action and discovering they’ve been purposefully left out of a previous mission, Morty is embarrassed by his grandfather Rick and asks that he lay low during the Vindicator’s mission to eliminate the villain World Ender. With multiple characters showing off their powers — like one hero, who is composed of a million ants and another that can summon a ghost train — the Avenger nods are at full bore. Ultimately, in typical Rick and Morty fashion, Rick defeats World Ender while he’s blackout drunk as the Vindicators do pretty much nothing of value.
Season Four: ‘One Flew Over the Crewcoos Morty’
The Movie: Ocean’s Twelve
The Parody: Rick goes toe-to-toe with another of his villains, a heist artist named Miles Knightly, and must participate in a heist off, just like in the crappy Ocean’s Eleven sequel, Ocean’s Twelve. In this parody, not only does Rick and Morty expose the formula that constitutes a heist film but also what makes them kind of lame. The episode created one of the biggest memes the show has ever had, too: “You son of a bitch, I’m in.”
Season Five: ‘Gorton Jerrysis Rickvangelion’
The Movie: Goodfellas
The Parody: When you blend a couple of mob classics together and add robot weasels, you know you’ve got yourself a winner. In this episode, Rick finally achieves his dream of having all five Gobotrons, as well as starts his own mafia family with different versions of himself. Complete with a voiceover Goodfellas tribute, this one also brings a great amount of betrayal and family deceit as Summer turns her back on her family, only to have Rick replace her as his literal right arm.
Season Six: ‘Rick: A Morty Well Lived’
The Movie: Die Hard
The Parody: When an alien terrorist takes over Blips and Chitz, there is only one barefooted, bandaged, tank-top wearing hero we can rely on — Summer Smith. As she disrupts a wonderfully voiced Alan Rickman-type alien and his thieving plans, she goes full-on Die Hard. Guns ablazin’, Summer lives out every John McClane fan’s fantasy as she navigates the film beat-for-beat, even citing the script itself. Thanks to this episode, the phrase “Doing a Die Hard,” has become an online catchphrase among fans.