Rick and Morty Season 5 Episode 3 took the satirical parody genre to new heights by giving us an episode that mocked capitalism and merchandise selling cartoons to their very core. Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon brought back former Community colleague Alison Brie for the voice of Planetina, and she did more justice to this role than you might think. Her voice acting prowess can be gauged from the exceptional performance as Planetina, the Captain Planet over-enthusiastic environmental superhero. Amidst all the chaos, we can still find that subtle nuance that makes this show better, the ability to convey the harsh realities of life in a very objective way.
Rampant commercialization of the animation industry hindered the creativity of the artists as the 80s, and 90s cartoons or animated films were banking highly on the revenues gained by the sale of merchandise. From He-Man to Captain Planet, every single IP was looking to create the next spiderman or batman to encash the sale of toys, shirts, and anything you can imagine thereof. The plunder was so acute that we saw our beloved heroes up for grabs as a toothbrush, and trust me. It might sound okay but imagine the sinister mind that counts upon the wishes of a child. To make this easier, it always benefited the manufacturers to attach a moral to all the shebang, and before you knew it, you already had 50$ Funko collectibles. Rick and Morty are selling T-shirts from the very start and want the viewers to buy more. That nonchalant satire is gleeful.
Apart from this, we also see a harsh burn on the over-enthusiastic environmentalist by showing us the sheer hypocrisy in Planetina; this becomes even more visual as Planetina becomes enraged by the degrading planet and tries to kill a lot of people in lieu of saving the planet. The hyper-violent traits of Planetina make Morty loathe her as she cannot see the complicated issues of omex social situations that exist. We see a subtle take on the G.I. Joe franchise in the very first segment.
The varied ethnicity joke is hilarious when you ponder over how Captain Planet took kids from all the well-known ethnicities. It’s pretty clever how we see that kids are grown up now and are simply milking the cash cow, Planetina.
Where are the others?
While Morty flies around in the arms of Planetina, we see Summer is quite sad about her breakup. To cheer her up, Rick takes her on an extraordinary adventure. Three different planets are nearing the end due to various cataclysmic reasons, and what better place can there be for a rick-dicuolous party! It’s an excellent escape for summer as she is getting high on a distant dying planet with the smartest man in the universe to take care of her. But Rick, being Rick, abandons her for “elbow-tits” donning alien and to show Rick that Daphne (Alien) was with Rick as her planet was dying and doing all this showed Rick how Rick-like summer has become all along these 4 seasons. Summer gives the nod to season three, where her one tit was more significant than the other due to the enlargement machine, subtle continuity.
Planetina did a Thanos!
Whilst the major part of the episode deals with the aforementioned. How planetina transforms into a violent killing machine resonates beautifully with the Thanos character arch from the avengers series. The audacity to show such conflicting scenarios is something the cast and crew of Rick and Morty can achieve. Rick and Morty Season 5 Episode 3 becomes more profound with the sincerity in the creators for keeping everything Morty quite serious and balancing it with a more humorous Rick and Summer storyline.
In the end, we can say that Morty was in love, and the way he kills the “kids” to be with Planetina, shows the extent to which love can drive us insane. A 14-year-old Morty becomes a killer in the name of love to see it all fall from grace. It’s a pretty intriguing addition to this season. We see our characters having dynamic changes in their personalities, and I hope they continue to surprise us in the same way.
Rick and Morty is an Adult Animated Sci-Fi Television Series created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon. Season 5 is developed by Adult Swim.