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Rick And Morty: The Highlander Reference You Missed In Mortyplicity

"Rick and Morty" feels like one of the most wholly unique shows currently on television. Now in its fifth season, the animated sitcom has created strange, far-out plots for an alcoholic scientist and his implausibly naive grandson to go on. This becomes abundantly clear when you watch the best "Rick and Morty" episodes, like the one where Rick sends Morty through an existential Hell until he admits that his idea for a fake vat of acid was good. 

While the series has a talented team of writers to bring new worlds into existence, the show still draws influence from other aspects of pop culture. Season 2's "Total Rickall" came to life due to an old plotline from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." In fact, after watching the most recent episode, Season 5's "Mortyplicity," you'll find an array of references and inspirations to other TV shows and movies. In 22 minutes, the episode references "Westworld," "Ex Machina," "Blade Runner," and the works of Isaac Asimov

People who grew up in the 1980s had plenty to chew on, especially when Rick mentions how all of the family's decoys will battle out in a "Highlander"-style deathmatch until only one family remains. While the initial reference is pretty straightforward, there's a hidden shoutout to the epic action-adventure movie if you listen closely enough. 

The after-credits scene uses a song from Highlander

As we watch the after-credits scene for "Mortyplicity," we see the wooden Jerry decoy who escaped a horrible fate earlier in the episode. The copy of a copy soon learns he's immortal, and he goes from one time period to the next, witnessing the new dominant species on Earth re-establish Christianity. As all of this takes place, "Who Wants to Live Forever" by Queen plays in the background. It's an appropriately epic song for the sequence, and it ties into the "Highlander" reference Rick made earlier in the episode. 

Queen wrote several songs used in the original 1986 movie, one of which was "Who Wants to Live Forever." The song title ties into the film's events because, if you don't know, the film follows a group of immortal warriors who can't die unless they're decapitated. They fight to the death until only a few remain. 

It's apropos for the 50-second scene, as we learn wooden Jerry is also immortal, and just as "Highlander" travels across different timelines, we watch this version of Jerry visit various points in time where he's treated in vastly different ways. Some "Rick and Morty" fans managed to pick up on the subtle nod to the fantasy classic, as Redditor u/rcw00 explains, "Kudos for R&M for paying that royalty fee, it was the perfect song to use."

As it stands, the after-credits scene is one of the best uses of a Queen song in any medium.