Round 2 of our Rick and Morty Press Hour! After speaking to stars Sarah Chalke and Chris Parnell, we were able to chat with the hit sci-fi cartoon’s creators, Justin Roiland (who also voices both Rick and Morty) and Dan Harmon (the creator of Community), to talk about what’s to come on season two and the release of the first season’s DVD. Speaking of, any chance we’ll see more Rick and Morty puppets like we saw on the promotions for the DVD?
Justin: I don’t think so, I mean it was really just an experiment. My sister’s boyfriend was on that that Jim Henson Creature Challenge show as one of the contestants and he’s just incredibly talented and makes the weirdest, eeriest, and most unsettling creatures. I pitched it to Adultswim they were into it as a as a way to promote the DVD. I was thrilled because they were going to make a couple of creepy Rick and Morty puppets out of the deal and so I said let’s just let’s lean in and use these things. I recorded a ton of stuff and we filmed like full day of bunch of ads and a bunch of exclusive content for websites. I think it would be bazar to do a show with them as puppets. It would be confusing, I think, for people who are familiar with the show. I think people would be like “What the fuck is this?”
Dan: Stop motion?
Justin: Yeah, could be. There’s all kinds of potential to do different mediums.
Dan: If you did it as a special. Basically what we did with Community, I could see you doing a Rick and Morty Christmas Special in a different medium.
Justin: We do have a show where there is infinite multiple realities so there could be an episode that starts 2-D. So Rick’s like “Hey Morty, you have to check out this reality.” And Morty’s like “What is it? Oh this is hacky!”
Well it’s certainly something we’d be interested in. What else? What about a crossover like we saw on Family Guy/The Simpsons?
Justin: We don’t have anything planned but we’re fans of a lot of different animated shows. It could be interesting to do something if it felt right. I don’t know, it’s hard. You do those crossover things and there’s just so many cooks in the kitchen at that point. Is it going to be right? We got Matt Groening and Al Jean and a bunch of The Simpsons guys to do a commentary track for the DVD. That’s where they first asked us to do a couch-gag for The Simpsons. So the script is submitted and we’re in the process right now of figuring out the production pipeline. That’s a tiny little crossover of Rick and Morty with The Simpsons which is insane to me, growing up as a kid being a fan of the show. That’s the closest at the moment.
We’ll keep our fingers crossed. What about something we can for sure look forward to like guest stars in season two?
Dan: We got Stephen Colbert to do a character and Werner Herzog.
Justin: We have some great Battlestar Galactica folks, Keegan Michael Key, Andy Daily and a bunch of Mr. Show guys. I feel like every episode there is someone…who are we forgetting because there’s another big one?
Dan: I don’t know, I can’t remember.
Justin: REAAAL Big one. We’ll think of it later and email you.
No email yet, fellas. But you can tell us about creating the tags at the end of the credits.
Justin: A lot of those come organically. This season especially. We had production barreling behind us so we had to move and think about what we had in the episode and what would be a funny call back. In season one, we’d know right away what the tag was going to be, but every episode has a tag. It’s a cool and fun thing that we want to continue to do and keep people through the credits. Not that there’s any reason to keep people on the hook. I love it. It’s like Ferris Buller at the end of the credits and all he does is yell at you to leave but it’s so great and such a treat.
Call backs? Well can we expect any to our favorite episodes in the first season in season two?
Justin: We’re being really careful not to bring popular characters back just for the sake of bringing them back. We want to really make sure it’s an organic reason
Dan: I’m a little worried about the curse of Community, which is that if you do a call back or exhibit some continuity, even if it’s not deliberately inside and even if it functions on its own, all the critics say “there’s this thing it’s called ‘the Human Being’ or ‘Annie’s boobs.'” Somehow the culture gets created that the show isn’t for new viewers which isn’t true. I watched that happen to Community. This show would be fine to watch the first episode of the fifth season. I kind of feel like if there’s no Meeseesks Box in the second season then there can be one in the third.
Justin: We really had a focus forging ahead and continuing what we did in season one because the world and universe and multiverse is so huge. Not to say that there isn’t any going back at all, but that isnt out focus. We really wanted to do fun awesome great points of entry episodic episodes with sprinkles of continuity in the background.
The guys were nice enough to get into their process for writing a season.
Dan: The early process was that we had a list sci-fi tropes, so we’re interested in teleportation, invisibility, rocket boots. We made a list of domestic tropes: divorce, credit card debt, training the dog, and stuff like that. We thought earlier that we need to stick to template of pairing those two columns each episode.
Justin: Which you know we still do from time to time. It’s funny, season one, when you look at it now, it is driven by Rick sort of crazy inventions. Whereas season two is a little more like open, it’s a little bigger. There’s still Rick’s inventions and stuff but it’s not really like “Jerry, here use this!” and it just reeks havoc. Dan’s right, we did write a list while thinking “What are cool Sci-fi things that we could do?” The Meeseeks Box being one of the most fresh ideas but there’s freezing time, X-Ray vision, and flying, a bunch of stuff we didn’t even get to in season one.
Dan: Ghost Goggles!
Justin: Ghost Goggles! Season 3!
And perhaps our favorite part of our time with Justin and Dan, the guys get real technical about whether we’ll ever see a Pirates of the Pancreas Ride.
Justin: It’s so funny because, not to get nerdy on you, but that is technically the world they left behind so Ethan…
Dan: But he would still have Pirates in the Pancreas. Everything about the new world is identical except just right before they died. In the new world they solved the Cronenberg problem just randomly probably and then they blew themselves up.
Justin: It’s so funny to me to imagine that back in Cronenberg world there’s a Cronenberg Ethan with Annie and all these people inside of him going “What the fuck happened?” and still working away on the theme park. Not that we’ve gone back there.
Dan: We spent a lot of time breaking down stories where Morty goes back to Cronenberg or something. It’s like there’s a certain ratio of sweat to joy where the sweat column gets above a certain level and you know it’s not Rick and Morty any more and it’s now fanfiction or some BBC drama.
Don’t ever change, guys. Be sure to check out season two of Rick and Morty next year!