Is Rick C 137 the Original Rick?

by Hazel

“Rick and Morty,” the animated sci-fi sitcom created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon, has captivated audiences with its unique blend of humor, science fiction, and complex character dynamics. One of the central figures in this universe is Rick Sanchez, specifically Rick C-137, the grandfather of Morty Smith from Dimension C-137. However, the question of whether Rick C-137 is the “original” Rick has sparked considerable debate among fans and theorists alike. This article delves into the complexities of Rick C-137’s identity, examining the evidence presented in the show, the implications of his actions, and the broader themes of identity and multiverse theory.

Rick C-137

Rick C-137 is introduced as an eccentric, alcoholic scientist with a penchant for reckless behavior and a genius-level intellect. He drags his grandson, Morty, on dangerous and bizarre adventures across the multiverse, often leaving chaos in their wake. From the very beginning, Rick’s identity and origins are shrouded in mystery. The designation “C-137” refers to his home dimension, which becomes a focal point for much of the series’ narrative.


Throughout the show, Rick’s backstory is hinted at through flashbacks, dialogue, and various interactions with other characters. He is portrayed as a deeply flawed individual, grappling with the consequences of his actions and the existential weight of his intelligence. The complexity of Rick’s character raises the question: Is Rick C-137 truly the original Rick, or is he just one of many iterations in the infinite expanse of the multiverse?


The Multiverse and Its Implications

To understand the debate surrounding Rick C-137’s identity, it’s crucial to grasp the concept of the multiverse as presented in “Rick and Morty.” The multiverse theory posits that there are countless parallel universes, each with its own version of every character and event. This framework allows for infinite variations of Rick Sanchez, each with different experiences, personalities, and moral compasses.


The Council of Ricks, an interdimensional governing body composed of numerous Ricks from different realities, is a testament to the vast number of Ricks that exist. This council, along with the Citadel of Ricks, serves as a central hub for these various Ricks and their respective Mortys. The existence of such institutions underscores the idea that no single Rick is inherently more “original” or “authentic” than another; rather, they are all unique products of their respective dimensions.


Rick C-137’s Distinguishing Characteristics

Despite the multitude of Ricks, Rick C-137 exhibits several distinguishing characteristics that set him apart. His relationship with Morty is notably different from that of other Ricks and their Mortys. While most Ricks treat their Mortys as expendable sidekicks, Rick C-137 shows moments of genuine care and concern for his grandson, suggesting a deeper emotional connection.

Rick C-137’s intelligence and resourcefulness are also highlighted throughout the series. He consistently outsmarts his adversaries, including other Ricks, and devises ingenious solutions to seemingly insurmountable problems. His reputation as one of the most capable and dangerous Ricks is reinforced by his conflicts with entities like Evil Morty and the Galactic Federation.

Moreover, Rick C-137’s philosophical musings and existential crises add layers to his character that are not as prominently explored with other Ricks. His nihilistic worldview and self-destructive tendencies are juxtaposed with fleeting moments of vulnerability and introspection, painting a complex portrait of a man struggling to find meaning in an indifferent universe.

The Original Rick: A Matter of Perspective

The notion of an “original” Rick is inherently tied to the idea of a primary timeline or dimension. However, in a multiverse with infinite possibilities, the concept of originality becomes increasingly nebulous. If Rick C-137 is considered the original Rick, it is largely because he is the Rick with whom the audience has spent the most time and developed the deepest connection.


Several episodes explore the idea that Rick C-137 may not be as unique as he appears. For instance, in the episode “Close Rick-counters of the Rick Kind,” it is revealed that Rick C-137 was framed for the murder of other Ricks by Evil Morty, suggesting that his actions and decisions are part of a larger, interdimensional struggle. Additionally, the episode “The Ricklantis Mixup” delves into the lives of other Ricks and Mortys, highlighting the diversity and complexity within the multiverse.

The show’s creators have intentionally left many aspects of Rick C-137’s past ambiguous, allowing for multiple interpretations and theories. This ambiguity reinforces the idea that Rick’s identity is fluid and multifaceted, shaped by his experiences and choices rather than a fixed point of origin.

Evidence Supporting Rick C-137 as the Original

While the concept of an original Rick is subjective, several pieces of evidence within the show suggest that Rick C-137 holds a special place in the narrative. One of the most compelling arguments is his intense rivalry with Evil Morty, who is depicted as a significant antagonist with a deep-seated vendetta against Rick C-137. This rivalry implies a unique history and connection between the two characters, setting Rick C-137 apart from other Ricks.

Additionally, the emotional weight of Rick C-137’s relationship with his family, particularly Beth and Morty, underscores his significance within the series. Episodes like “The Wedding Squanchers” and “The Rickshank Rickdemption” explore Rick’s sacrifices and the lengths he is willing to go to protect his loved ones, suggesting a depth of character that aligns with the idea of an original or primary Rick.

Moreover, Rick C-137’s refusal to conform to the norms of the Citadel of Ricks and his disdain for the Council of Ricks indicate a rebellious and individualistic streak that sets him apart. His determination to forge his own path, even in the face of overwhelming odds, aligns with the archetype of a central, defining character.

Counterarguments: The Fluidity of Identity

Despite the evidence supporting Rick C-137’s special status, several counterarguments challenge the notion of him being the original Rick. One of the primary counterarguments is the inherent nature of the multiverse, which renders the concept of originality moot. In a reality where infinite versions of each character exist, no single version can claim primacy over the others.

Furthermore, the show’s frequent exploration of alternate realities and timelines blurs the lines between different versions of Rick. Episodes like “Rick Potion #9” and “Mortynight Run” demonstrate the ease with which characters can shift between dimensions, suggesting that identity is fluid and constantly evolving.

The character of Evil Morty also complicates the notion of an original Rick. Evil Morty’s rise to power and his orchestration of complex schemes across the multiverse suggest that he, too, has a significant role to play in the overarching narrative. His actions imply that the story of “Rick and Morty” is not centered around a single, original Rick, but rather a web of interconnected characters and events.

Themes of Identity and Existentialism

The debate over Rick C-137’s status as the original Rick ties into broader themes of identity and existentialism that permeate “Rick and Morty.” The show frequently explores the idea that identity is not fixed, but rather a product of choices, experiences, and perceptions. Rick C-137’s struggles with his own sense of self, his nihilistic outlook, and his attempts to find meaning in a chaotic universe reflect these existential themes.

The concept of the multiverse further complicates the notion of identity by presenting infinite variations of each character. This framework challenges traditional ideas of originality and authenticity, suggesting that identity is a complex and multifaceted construct. Rick C-137’s journey, with its highs and lows, triumphs and failures, exemplifies the fluid nature of identity and the search for meaning in an infinite reality.


The question of whether Rick C-137 is the original Rick in “Rick and Morty” is a complex and multifaceted issue, deeply intertwined with the show’s themes of identity, existentialism, and the multiverse. While there is evidence to suggest that Rick C-137 holds a special place within the narrative, the very nature of the multiverse challenges the notion of originality and authenticity.

Ultimately, Rick C-137’s identity is shaped by his choices, experiences, and relationships, rather than a fixed point of origin. His journey through the multiverse, marked by moments of brilliance, vulnerability, and introspection, exemplifies the fluid nature of identity and the search for meaning in an infinite reality. As fans continue to explore and debate the mysteries of “Rick and Morty,” the enigma of Rick C-137 remains a central and captivating element of the series.


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