Rick and Morty’s Justin Roiland Talks Big Bang Theory While Discussing Adult Swim Hit’s Approach to Referencing Himself


When it comes to delivering memorable dialogue and goofy, wacky situations, few shows on television are on the same level as Adult Swim’s. rick and morty, which is nearing the start of its final and potentially best season yet. But even though fans everywhere were happy to celebrate the animated hit’s return with gags and moments from the show’s past, co-creator Justin Roiland and the other writers aren’t too fond of cracking jokes and jokes. references that focus on rick and mortyhis own story. And in explaining the reasoning behind this approach, Roiland took a not-so-subtle jab at the former ratings monster. The Big Bang Theory.

Both rick and morty and The Big Bang Theory are under the Warner Bros. banner. Television Distribution, but that hasn’t stopped Justin Roiland from using the comedy starring Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik as an example of what he’s trying to avoid with the sci-fi animated series. This is how he said it, according to ComicBook.com:

I feel like the smartest angle is to always try to stay true to what you think is funny. [We] never want to be like “Bazinga”. We never want to do that kind of bullshit. Jokes should always look like well-crafted jokes and not just references. . . . It will discourage people.

Given the history of animation as a whole, when it comes to canonical storytelling making up such a small percentage, it’s understandable that Justin Roiland and others behind the scenes understand that all rick and morty the viewer will religiously lean into each episode in its entirety. As such, a random audience member who pops up for a Season 6 episode won’t be impressed if the ep is piled end-to-end with inside jokes that only longtime viewers would find value. Technically, the same is true for sitcoms like The Big Bang Theory which have hundreds of episodes, but live action network series obviously have a different rulebook to follow.

Which doesn’t mean that rick and morty avoids connective storytelling entirely, of course, otherwise The return of Evil Morty in the season 5 finale wouldn’t have meant so much to anyone who had theorized about it. As such, Justin Roiland doesn’t want to rely on taglines that pay homage to moments for which new viewers have no context, and therefore no Bazinga moments. Granted, there are absolutely jokes that fit under that umbrella, and Roiland himself recently said the show would be lean more towards canonical storytelling in the new season. But such elements are never meant to be the crux or the entirety of the narrative or humor.

Justin Roiland himself spoke to one of the rick and morty‘s most iconic episodes as an example of a self-perpetuating allusion, saying:

The [is] the occasional reference now because we have… we’ll have an acknowledgment of Rick turned into a pickle. Just little things here and there that we did.

Now, would it still be funny if a Season 6 episode featured every character walking around saying, “I’m Pickle [Name]even if they’re not also hybrid pickle/human creatures with rat bone exoskeletons? Yeah, probably, since rick and mortyThe voice cast of can make any line laugh-worthy. But Roiland & Co. prefers to create stories that can stand on their own without small bones, even if Pickle Rick appears from time to time.

Considering The Big Bang Theory is one of the most successful sitcoms of the modern era – as well as one of the most hated – there is certainly value in trying to ape his formula. But that’s for the world of multicamera sitcoms, not the worlds of animated multiverses. But I would certainly like to see what a rick and morty the episode resembled one that had been written by Chuck Lorre.

With the previous five seasons available to stream with a HBO Max Subscription, rick and morty Season 6 premieres on Adult Swim on Sunday, September 4 at 11:00 p.m. ET. Head to our 2022 TV premiere schedule to see what other new and old favorites are on the way.

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