The Arrested Development Reference You Missed In Rick And Morty

It's obvious that "Rick and Morty" and "Arrested Development" don't have a lot in common on the surface. "Rick and Morty" holds the status of being the ultimate gonzo science fiction parody cartoon currently on television. "Arrested Development" is a sitcom as well, but is still rooted in the real world: a rich man is charged with embezzlement and heads to jail while his son tries to hold the business and the family together. At the time the show first aired in 2003, it was also clearly based on the white-collar crimes then grabbing headlines, like the Enron and Worldcom cases.

However, each sitcom trafficked in so much absurd humor and high-concept plot that naturally, actors like David Cross and Tony Hale appeared on both series. Cross played closeted son-in-law Tobias Funke on "Arrested Development" before he guest-starred on the fourth "Rick and Morty" episode, "M. Night Shaym-Aliens!," as Prince Nebulon, an alien hoping to trick Rick into giving up his secrets through a series of simulations. Cross' appearance isn't the only thing in the episode that links "Arrested Development" and "Rick and Morty," though.

Cross' characters don't like nudity

Just like Cross' own character on "Arrested Development," Prince Nebulon, as well as his species, the Zigerions, are not exactly comfortable with nudity. At one point, "Arrested Development" reveals that Tobias is "never nude," even wearing denim shorts while in the shower. He proclaims that there are "DOZENS OF US! DOZENS!" but his condition nevertheless becomes an outstanding running gag over the course of the show.

At one point in "M. Night Shaym-Aliens!," Rick and Morty take their clothes off because as Rick reveals, the Zigerions dislike nakedness and won't surveil them if they're nude. Indeed, Nebulon and his crew appear truly disgusted and repelled by Rick and Morty's bodies. In fact, one joke about Nebulon's posterior suggests the Prince is a "never-nude" himself, and it's easy to imagine Tobias sympathizing with the aliens, if only briefly.

If you want to see the episode for yourself, "Rick and Morty" is available on Hulu and HBO Max, while "Arrested Development" can be found on Netflix's streaming service.