Rick and Morty S7, Ep 1 Review
It’s only been a year since the last season of Rick and Morty, but it might as well have been an eternity. In January 2023, Justin Roiland’s reputation imploded overnight when reports came out about him being a perverted jerk. Adult Swim and Hulu cut ties with him, and, for a time, the future of Rick and Morty and Solar Opposites remained in doubt. Solar Opposites moved on without any problems, replacing Justin’s role as Korvo with someone else. Who would voice Rick and Morty, though? Adult Swim said that they spent months going through thousands of auditions, but otherwise, they remained tight-lipped about the recast. It wasn’t until a few weeks ago that fans got a first taste of the people (yes, two people) who would be the new voices of Rick and Morty. Even after the final season trailer dropped, they still wouldn’t reveal the names of Rick and Morty’s new VA’s, keeping it a secret until the night of the premiere.
The question on everyone’s mind going into the new season is how the new Rick and Morty would do. While it’s too soon to call it, after watching the season premiere, Rick and Morty might be in good hands. Unfortunately, the episode itself wasn’t as good as other season premieres have been in the past.
Mr. Poopybutthole Gets a Grip on Life
The premise around the season premiere, whose title doesn’t include a variation of Rick or Morty’s name in it, is simple. Mr. Poopybutthole, the Smith-Sanchez family’s longtime friend that Beth shot, has hit rock bottom. He’s lost his job, his wife left him and took their kid, and now he’s freeloading Smith family’s goodwill and getting drunk. Since Rick’s the only one refusing to do anything about it, the family dumps the responsibility of intervening onto him. In typical Rick fashion, he decides to half-ass it by getting together his friends (Birdperson, Squanchy, Gearhead) and Gene from next door, and they all go out on a drinking bender. Then, to make things even crazier, Hugh Jackman (played by himself) shows up and puts it in Poopybutthole’s head that he should try and win his wife back. Chaos ensues as Rick, of all people, ends up being the one serving as the voice of reason.
To get to the main point, this wasn’t a good episode of Rick and Morty. It lacked the importance of last year’s premiere, which changed up the status quo as much as one can in this show. It isn’t even in the same league as the all-time great, “The Rickshank Redemption.” As fun as Mr. Poopybutthole can be as a character, he’s the kind best used sparingly. He’s been at his best when he’s commenting at the end of every season and the like. This didn’t use him to his full potential, and the episode suffered for it.
In addition, the episode ignores concepts that fans would’ve found way more interesting. This was the first time Squanchy appeared since the ill-fated wedding. Learning how he survived the Federation attack would’ve been interesting. We now see Birdperson’s daughter is going through an emo phase that he barely knows how to deal with. Why not focus on that? The show feels like it dropped the ball on a lot of things here, even there were a few good jokes.
The most egregious sin, though, is that it barely used Morty, denying us the chance to hear his new VA’s chops.
Meet Ian Cardoni and Harry Belden, the new Rick and Morty
The real draw of the entire episode, though, is something fans have wanted to know since Justin got fired: who’s voicing Rick and Morty now? We finally got our answer, and the best part is that they’re completely unknown.
Say hello to Ian Cardoni and Harry Belden, the new voices of Rick and Morty, respectively. Both of them are relative nobodies in the entertainment industry. Right after the first episode premiered, I went on Instagram and checked out Ian’s profile. It only cleared a hundred followers after I followed him. In other words, these guys have just been given the chance of a lifetime. If they play their cards right, this could send their careers into the stratosphere.
While Harry didn’t get much of a chance to show off his work as Morty, Ian Cardoni did, and he excelled. You could barely tell that someone other than Justin Roiland was voicing him! He’s got my approval as a fan.
So, we’re now in the post-Justin era of Rick and Morty. The first episode wasn’t good, but at least we know the new Rick can hold his own.