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The Portal Gun Theory That Has Rick And Morty Fans Buzzing About Season 5

Much like Rick Sanchez himself, "Rick and Morty" as a TV show isn't going to die any time soon. With Adult Swim giving the animated sitcom a massive 70-episode order, there will be plenty more stories to come in the years to come. Season 5 proves the writers have no problem running full steam ahead with the wackiest premises imaginable, taking science-fiction and fantasy in new, bizarre directions. 

So far in the latest season, we've seen Rick go head-to-head with his nemesis, Mr. Nimbus. Morty has gotten into a pretty serious relationship with Planetina, and the audience has seen various decoys of the Smith family meet increasingly violent demises. It's a show that dives headfirst into absurdity and expects the audience to go along for the wacky ride, even when it introduces half-human, half-horse people halfway through an episode. 

We've seen a lot throughout Season 5 of "Rick and Morty," but there's one device that's been conspicuously absent — Rick's portal gun. The sci-fi gadget has been a frequent presence on the show, allowing the titular duo to travel across dimensions and move from one planet to the next with ease. However, for the first four episodes of Season 5, Rick has stuck with his spaceship to travel to far-off lands. So what's the deal?

Fans speculate on where Rick's portal gun is

There's been a few instances in "Rick and Morty" Season 5 where a portal gun would've come in handy. When Rick and Summer travel to various doomed planets in "A Rickconvenient Mort," they go from one world to the next via Rick's spaceship even though portals would've been a lot more convenient. Additionally, Rick and Morty have to travel from the Grand Canyon to Las Vegas in "Rickdependence Spray" to stop an incoming swarm of ... uh, Morty's creations. Throughout all of this, no one brings up the portal gun.

The absence is a point of contention on Reddit when u/ActionFilmsFan1995 writes, "4 episodes and no portal gun, something is up." A lot of speculation materializes, like when u/smartorcrazy mentions, "I think it's a character development thing. Rick used the portal gun to run away from his family and other problems. But he's changed now, he cares about his family more (he even called Morty 'kiddo')." It would make sense for Rick to want to become less reliant on his portal gun. After all, we saw him call himself a terrible father during the Season 4 finale

The absence of the portal gun might be Rick's way of keeping himself within this single dimension. In the past, he could use it to travel around whenever he messed things up too severely, but now, he may not want to give himself that easy out. Other people, like u/TangMugs, believe the portal gun needs to show up at some point: "Yeah but the portal gun IS Rick and Morty. Like the dimension hopping set the show apart. Now it's just like Star Trek meets family guy." "Rick and Morty" isn't a show that takes significant plot developments lightly, so expect an explanation to crop up in the weeks to come as new episodes air every Sunday on Adult Swim.