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Rick And Morty's Theme Song Was Actually Written For A Different Show

While "Rick and Morty" has defined its own brand of subversive meta-humor, it has always been a show that wasn't afraid to let viewers know where it borrowed ideas from. After all, the inspiration behind "Rick and Morty" came from an earlier project by co-creator Justin Roiland called "The Real Adventures of Doc and Marti," a not-so-veiled reference to the protagonists of the "Back to the Future" series.

Rick (Justin Roiland) and Morty (also Roiland) constantly equate the situations they find themselves in with movie tropes. These dialogue exchanges pointedly remind viewers of where they've seen certain elements before and, somewhat aggressively, invite them to compare the "Rick and Morty" version of events to what are often legendary moments of cinema and television. Beyond that, nearly every episode of "Rick and Morty" refers to the title of a famous film or show, regardless of the relevance of that title to the events of the story.

So while the showrunners behind "Rick and Morty" aren't shy about borrowing, they have also lifted at least one element of the show from a different project altogether that fans may not be aware of. Here is the show that the "Rick and Morty" theme song was initially written for.

The Rick and Morty theme song was composed for Justin Roiland's Dog World

"Rick and Morty" co-creators Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland were both fairly established when they got together to write the pilot for the show. However, as is often the case for dedicated creators in television, both had plenty of projects that never took off, and one of those provided the theme song for "Rick and Morty."

In an interview with Thrillist, "Rick and Morty" composer Ryan Elder revealed the otherworldly theme for the show was actually for a concept that Roiland had pitched to Cartoon Network called "Dog World." Elder said, "[Roiland] wanted something that was adventurous, and he referenced the 'Farscape' theme song and 'Invader Zim' and 'Doctor Who,' and I kinda put all those in a blender." When Roiland and Harmon put together the "Rick and Morty" pilot in a shockingly short amount of time, they used the theme as a placeholder and never found a better replacement.

For anyone who wonders what "Dog World" would have been like, fans on Reddit who found a clip described it as a more family-friendly version of "Rick and Morty," where dogs are masters and humans are pets. If that sounds familiar to fans, that might be because the "Rick and Morty" episode "Lawnmower Dog" reuses elements of the plot.

There's even a brief reference to "Dog World" in the episode, when Rick hypothesizes about a show set in a world of dogs, exclaiming, "I mean, I'd watch it, Morty, for at least 11 minutes a pop."