Why Is Rick Always with Morty?

by Hazel

Rick Sanchez and Morty Smith, the central characters of the animated series “Rick and Morty,” have captivated audiences with their unconventional adventures across the multiverse. From their first escapade to their latest mind-bending journey, one question persists: why is Rick always with Morty? This article delves into the multifaceted dynamics of their relationship, exploring psychological, philosophical, and narrative perspectives to unravel the bond that binds this iconic duo.

The Inseparable Bond: A Multiverse of Possibilities

At first glance, Rick and Morty appear to be an odd pairing: a brilliant yet jaded scientist and his awkward, impressionable teenage grandson. Despite their stark differences in age, intelligence, and demeanor, they share an inseparable bond that transcends the boundaries of their individual characteristics. This bond is fundamental to the series’ narrative structure and serves as a linchpin for exploring themes ranging from existentialism to the ethics of scientific exploration.


Guardianship and Responsibility

One of the foundational aspects of Rick and Morty’s relationship is the theme of guardianship. Rick, despite his outward cynicism and disregard for authority, often assumes a protective role over Morty. This guardianship manifests in various forms, from shielding Morty from physical dangers in their adventures to imparting (albeit unconventional) life lessons and wisdom.


Morty, in turn, represents a responsibility for Rick—a reminder of the consequences of his actions and a moral compass in the chaotic multiverse they navigate. Their interactions often oscillate between moments of genuine care and guidance and instances of conflict stemming from Rick’s selfish tendencies and Morty’s burgeoning sense of individuality.


The Morty Effect: Emotional Fulfillment Amid Chaos

Beyond the surface-level dynamics of mentorship and guardianship, Rick’s attachment to Morty also suggests a deeper emotional need. Throughout the series, Rick grapples with existential despair and loneliness, exacerbated by his awareness of the vastness and indifference of the multiverse. Morty, in his relative innocence and empathy, provides a grounding force—a connection to humanity that Rick often tries to distance himself from.


Psychologically, Morty serves as a source of emotional fulfillment for Rick, offering moments of genuine connection and purpose amidst the chaos of their adventures. This emotional dependency, albeit nuanced and often buried beneath layers of sarcasm and cynicism, underscores the complexity of their relationship.

The Morty Archetype: Reflections on Innocence and Experience

In Joseph Campbell’s monomyth framework, Morty embodies the archetype of the hero’s journey—the inexperienced youth thrust into a world of trials and challenges, guided by a mentor figure (in this case, Rick). Morty’s character arc evolves throughout the series, as he grapples with the consequences of his adventures and confronts ethical dilemmas that test his moral compass.

Rick, on the other hand, embodies the archetype of the trickster or the wise old man—the figure who possesses knowledge and power but often challenges societal norms and conventional morality. Their dynamic echoes timeless themes of innocence versus experience, with Morty representing the former and Rick the latter.

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Narrative Necessity: Plot Device or Deeper Meaning?

From a narrative perspective, the constant presence of Morty by Rick’s side serves not only as a plot device but also as a vehicle for exploring deeper philosophical and existential themes. Morty’s innocence and vulnerability juxtaposed with Rick’s jaded worldview create narrative tension and opportunities for character development.

Moreover, Morty’s character evolution—from a timid, uncertain teenager to a more assertive and morally aware individual—mirrors Rick’s own journey of self-discovery and introspection. Their relationship dynamic is integral to the series’ narrative coherence, offering a lens through which viewers can contemplate themes of identity, morality, and the nature of reality itself.

Philosophical Underpinnings: Nihilism, Existentialism, and Beyond

Central to “Rick and Morty” is its exploration of philosophical concepts such as nihilism and existentialism. Rick’s nihilistic worldview, characterized by a belief in the meaninglessness of existence and the insignificance of individual actions, contrasts sharply with Morty’s more optimistic, albeit sometimes naive, outlook on life.

Their philosophical debates, often woven into the fabric of their adventures, raise profound questions about free will, determinism, and the nature of consciousness. Morty’s presence alongside Rick not only serves as a narrative foil but also as a philosophical counterpoint, challenging Rick’s cynicism and prompting viewers to contemplate the ethical implications of scientific discovery and the pursuit of knowledge.


In conclusion, the enduring presence of Morty alongside Rick in “Rick and Morty” transcends mere narrative convenience—it is a testament to the complexity and depth of their relationship. From themes of guardianship and responsibility to existential musings and philosophical debates, Rick and Morty’s dynamic offers viewers a rich tapestry of emotions, ideas, and moral dilemmas to contemplate.

Their journey through the multiverse is not just a series of random adventures but a narrative exploration of what it means to exist, to connect, and to confront the existential challenges of an ever-changing cosmos. As the series continues to evolve, so too does the relationship between Rick and Morty, inviting viewers to delve deeper into the nuances of their bond and the profound implications it holds for both characters and audience alike.


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