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The Best Episodes Of Rick And Morty, According To IMDb

Not many TV series have taken pop culture by storm quite like Adult Swim's Rick and Morty, which brings us the exploits of the alcoholic, super-genius, dimension-hopping mad scientist Rick Sanchez and his extremely beleaguered grandson, Morty Smith. Along with his parents Beth and Jerry and his sister Summer, Morty must constantly deal with the bizarre situations, interdimensional threats, and occasional destruction of entire universes that comes with being in the orbit of the Smartest Man in the Universe. But even though he's only a kid, Morty has learned to handle himself pretty well on his and Rick's "adventures." (At this point, the kid has seen a lot — and we mean a lot.)

It can seem like Rick and Morty has aired far more than its four seasons, due in large part to the fact that it used to take co-creators Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland forever to plot out new seasons and get them into production (the series debuted way back in 2013). However, the relative slightness of the show's episode count is made up for by the fact that Rick and Morty has never fielded a truly awful installment — which can make picking out the best among them near impossible.

Fortunately, the registered users of IMDb rate pretty much every episode of every series ever made. We're pretty partial to the likes of the very meta Story Train episode, but IMDb's list of the top five episodes of Rick and Morty is hard to argue with. Interestingly, though, it contains no episodes from the first season which gave us such absolute classics as "Meeseeks and Destroy," "Rick Portion #9," and "Rixty Minutes," the episode that introduced us to interdimensional cable.

Without further ado, here are the very best episodes of Rick and Morty, according to IMDb.

Season 2, Episode 10: The Wedding Squanchers

The final episode of season 2, entitled "The Wedding Squanchers," is one heck of a ride — starting with the literal ride that Jerry takes when he's accidentally delivered (via a kind of space FedEx) to the wedding of Rick's best friend Birdperson and his human mate, Tammy. Rick hadn't planned on attending ("Weddings are basically funerals with cake," he complains), but after Jerry ships himself off, he and the rest of the family follow. 

For a moment, it seems like we're going to get a really sweet, almost lighthearted episode. The wedding ceremony, while obviously weird, is oddly touching — and Rick even extremely briefly entertains the possibility of opening himself up to others. And then, it all goes pear-shaped.

Tammy reveals herself to be a double agent working for the Galactic Federation (which, as Birdperson points out, considers him and Rick to be terrorists), and opens fire on the wedding party, killing Birdperson and several others. Rick and the family manage to escape, but they're left with a choice of three planets outside the Federation's reach on which to hide out: one where everything is "on the cob," one where the sun screams constantly, and one roughly the size of your backyard.

Despondent, Rick leaves the family on the tiny planet and does the unthinkable: He turns himself in, allowing himself to be imprisoned in exchange for immunity and safe passage back to Earth for his family. The episode ends on this cliffhanger, and the post-credits scene even features that lovable scamp Mr. Poopybutthole teasing the audience (and an unlucky pizza guy) over the fact that it would be a looooong wait for season 3.

Season 4, Episode 8: The Vat of Acid Episode

The only episode of Rick and Morty season 4 to appear in the top five list on IMDb is "The Vat of Acid Episode," which ominously defies the series' standard episode-naming conventions in the interest of... well, accuracy. In it, Rick and Morty get into a squabble with a couple of alien gangsters, whom they escape from by faking their deaths, jumping into a vat of phony acid, and waiting for the gangsters to leave. When Morty starts to lose his patience, the pair are forced to abandon the plan and simply kill their adversaries.

Morty berates Rick over the whole "vat of acid" plan, believing it to have been a crappy idea, and hassles him into creating a kind of game controller for real life — one that can instantly take the user back to a "save point." Morty egregiously abuses this device, causing all kinds of criminal mayhem and simply using the remote to reset himself when the consequences get too hot.

But then, Morty falls in love with a girl and becomes reluctant to use the device again. Enter Jerry, who not only activates the device, but also wipes the save point — prompting Morty to return to Rick and tell him that he's learned his lesson: that nobody should live a life free of consequences. Morty, however, has not learned his lesson. Rick never told him just how the device works: It transports Morty to an alternate dimension, killing the version of him from that dimension and allowing Morty to take his place. Morty begs Rick to undo everything, and Rick does — meaning that all of Morty's criminal activities are now remembered by the public, who form an angry mob around the Smith house. Rick offers Morty exactly one option for escaping them, and we doubt we have to explain what it is.

Season 2, Episode 4: Total Rickall

The season 2 episode "Total Rickall" would likely be many fans' choice for the top spot. It features an absolutely inspired premise: an alien parasite infects the household, causing the members of the family to have memories of characters that don't exist and situations that never happened. Mr. Poopybutthole is introduced very early on in this episode as the characters begin to multiply, getting progressively more weird and zany. Rick attempts unsuccessfully to nip the situation in the bud, but after being goaded into a flashback involving a barbecue, the house is suddenly just overrun with wacky characters.

The casual introductions of all of these bizarre characters keep getting funnier as the episode goes on, and we meet a lot of them. The parasites start off bamboozling the family with the sudden appearances of "Uncle Steve" and "Cousin Nicky," but before long, we're getting hit with "Photography Raptor," "Ghost in a Jar," "Reverse Giraffe," "Duck with Muscles," "Pencilvester," "Amish Cyborg," "Mrs. Refrigerator," and so, so many more. 

As expected, Rick is able to puzzle out a solution to parse out the real from the fake and stop the spread: The parasites can only create happy memories, so anyone the family can remember exclusively fondly has to die. The episode closes with the entire family cheerfully dispatching all of their beloved "friends," with only one left standing: Mr. Poopybutthole, who it turns out wasn't a parasite, after all. It only takes Beth shooting and nearly killing him for the family to figure this out.

Season 3, Episode 1: The Rickshank Rickdemption

"The Rickshank Rickdemption" is the first episode of season 3, meaning it picks up from the cliffhanger of "The Wedding Squanchers" — although at first, it doesn't appear to be doing that at all. It opens with Rick enjoying a meal with the whole family in his favorite restaurant, Shoney's, as he details his escape from prison. However, Rick feels that something isn't quite right, and he's correct: He's inside a simulation within the prison, and a Galactic Federation agent named Cornvelious Daniel appears to let Rick know that he's there to gather information and then liquefy Rick's brain.

This, of course, isn't what happens. Rick is able to pull one over on Daniel by showing him a false memory of the time he invented the portal gun, and when Daniel tries to upload the data, it turns out to have been a virus through which Rick can take control of various agents outside the simulation. Meanwhile, Morty and Summer use an old portal gun to attempt to rescue Rick, but their plan goes awry and the Council of Ricks intervenes. When Morty informs them that their Rick has been captured, the Council decide to infiltrate the Federation prison and assassinate him.

This... is also not what happens. Rick is able to manipulate the two sides into fighting while he rains absolute terror on the Ricks and the Federation alike, rescuing Morty and Summer and taking a moment to totally devalue the Federation's currency (the "Blemflarck") before departing. This causes the Federation to effectively collapse and withdraw from Earth — leaving Rick totally victorious, and leading to one of the darkest endings in the series' history, as Rick reveals to Morty that all of it (including Beth and Jerry's impending divorce) was part of his plan. 

Season 3, Episode 7: The Ricklantis Mixup

IMDb's users rank "The Ricklantis Mixup" as the very best episode of Rick and Morty, and it's certainly the most unique episode of the entire series. On it, Rick and Morty are preparing to venture off to Atlantis when they're interrupted by alternate versions of themselves seeking contributions for the Citadel Redevelopment Fund. Our Rick and Morty blow them off, and as they head for the undersea kingdom, the episode moves to the Citadel — and stays there.

The Citadel, introduced on the season 1 episode "Close Rick-counters of the Rick Kind," is a society made up of countless alternate Ricks and Mortys, and there's indeed some weird stuff going on there. Since Rick obliterated most of the Council of Ricks on "The Rickshank Redemption," there's a presidential election going on, and a Morty is gaining popularity as a candidate. There are subplots involving a Cop Rick and a self-hating Cop Morty, the brutal truth behind a product called "Simple Rick's Wafers," an uprising among the students at Morty Academy, and the reveal that Candidate Morty (who wins the election to become President Morty) isn't nearly as benevolent as he seems.

After all this, the catches up with our Rick and Morty, who have returned from Atlantis and are pumped about their adventure. Morty wonders aloud about those guys from the Citadel, and Rick says he shouldn't worry — it's not like anything going on there will have any effect on them.

It's an amazing self-contained episode, one that has been begging for a sequel since it aired. It's also the best episode of Rick and Morty ever, according to IMDb's users — although what they have against those interdimensional cable episodes, we'll never know.