How much does El Paso love the top TV comedy among millennial viewers? When the Rickmobile came to town in September, bringing special merchandise from the animated show, Rick and Morty, El Pasoans got their portal guns out, got “schiwfty,” and flooded the Alamo Drafthouse.
Rick and Morty, the Adult Swim show created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon has amassed a large following that only continues to grow after its third season. Fans say the show is different from other adult animated shows and quickly becomes addictive.
“It was like a vortex, and I just started watching it and I couldn’t leave and stop watching it,” said Aaron Woods, 20, a UTEP student majoring engineering leadership with a minor in commercial music.
Although the show about a sociopathic universe-hopping scientist and his grandson has aired just over thirty episodes, its metaphysical themes have resonated with viewers between 18 and 34.
“I love how it promotes that everything is kind of like meaningless and super nihilistic but like funny,” Woods said. “It’s pretty arbitrary and I think that’s what I like about it.”
The line for the Rickmobile wrapped completely around the Alamo Drafthouse at Montecillo and started down the hill. UTEP business management student Gilbert Quintana, 25, waited in line with Woods and reflected on the contradiction the show has become so loved for – between the nihilistic overtones and immature humor. He began with praise for the title character, Rich Sanchez for “the way he’s smart, he knows he’s smart, too smart for himself-he even says that.”
Quintana also said he liked the character named Mr. Poopy Butthole, as his friends broke out into chuckles.
Samuel Wintersmith 18, from Lubbock, drove all the way to El Paso for the Rickmobile saying it was the closest the Rickmobile stopped by his hometown and “you know, had to see the Rickmobile, that’s my purpose in life.”
Wintersmith stood out in the crowd as he was dressed in light blue from head to toe, sporting a costume of one of the shows most quoted characters.
“I’m Mr. Meeseeks, look at me!” He said and struck the same pose that the high-pitched character did in the first season of Rick and Morty.
Mr. Meeseeks, a blue figure that appears out of a cube on the show, is a prime example of the metaphysical and nihilistic humor on the show, as his famous quote is “existence is pain!”
Wintersmith said he liked Rick and Morty because “it’s meta. It’s kind of like a show that knows it’s a show.”
Lourdes Tellez and Kevin del Real, waited in line wearing matching tie-dye T-shirts from Walmart that they painted with Rick and Morty designs.
Tellez said she was in line hoping to get the towel with the character Mr. Poopybutthole from the Rickmobile and said that she loved the show because of the humor, and that she was beginning to like the character Summer Smith.
“I’m drawing more towards Summer, now there’s a lot of character development,” she said, referring to season three that focused on Morty’s older sister more than the first two seasons.
Del Real said it was the “millennial humor” that made him love the show so much. He said his favorite character was “Pickle Rick because of his tenacity.” Tellez started laughing.
Pickle Rick is the character that was created when mad scientist Rick turned himself into a pickle to get out of family therapy.