Season 1, Episode 09:
Something Ricked This Way Comes
Directed by: John Rice
Rick: You work for the devil!
Summer: So what?
Rick and Mr. Needful: "So what?"
Summer: Yes, so what if he's the devil, Rick? At least the devil has a job. At least he's active in the community. What do you do? You eat our food and make gadgets. Buh-bye.
Summer gets a job at a pawn shop owned by the devil. Jerry helps Morty with his science fair project.
This episode contains examples of:
- Acquired Situational Narcissism: Jerry is really enjoying being validated by the rich elites of Pluto, so much so that he publicly humiliates Morty in response to a legitimate question about Pluto's destabilization.
- Ad Hominem: At Pluto when Morty challenges Jerry's viewpoint in front of a crowd of Plutonians, the latter ridicules Morty by telling a story of how silly he acted at the age of five.
- Affably Evil: Summer is okay with working for Mr. Needful, since she figures that every business hiring teenagers is evil in some way, and at least he is polite about it.
- And Knowing Is Half the Battle: Spoofed. At the end of the episode, Summer and Rick wonder what the aesop might have been.
- Bad People Abuse Animals: Alongside a school bully, a Neo-Nazi, a Westboro Baptist Church member, and the Devil, one of the random people that Rick and Summer beat up in the montage at the end of the episode is a guy who mistreats his dog.
- Be Careful What You Wish For:
- Mr. Goldenfold's cost of having women want him was becoming impotent. He falls to his knees crying, complete with Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" playing in the background.Mr. Goldenfold: Oh mah gawd, how could I not see this coming?! My lust! My greed! I deserve this!
- Mr. Needful's response:
- And then Rick nulls the magic of the cologne...along with all the artifacts in Mr. Needful's shop so anyone buying them can get away without paying any price. Needless to say, Mr. Needful rightfully declares him to be worse than any devil.
- Mr. Goldenfold's cost of having women want him was becoming impotent. He falls to his knees crying, complete with Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" playing in the background.
- Bully Hunter: Rick and Summer react to Needful's betrayal by taking up an intense, steroid-fueled workout, and once they're super buff they go out and attack people the likes of which are Neo-Nazis, animal abusers and a "God Hates Fags" protester. And yes, an actual school bully.
- A Date with Rosie Palms: Morty warns Jerry that the next time he comes into his room, he should knock first. To drive the point home, Morty was on his laptop and his pants were off.
- Devil in Plain Sight: Mr. Needful is a literal one and gets immediately recognized as such by Rick. Zig-Zagged as he's genuinely nice with Summer, but ultimately played straight when he ends up Zuckerberging her out of his business.
- The Devil Is a Loser: Mr. Needful is ultimately a pathetic figure, easily undone through common sense and modern science. Or failing that, a few good punches.
- Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: When Rick finds out that all of Mr. Needful's objects curse the people who take them, what does he do? Set up a shop right across from Mr. Needful's that removes all of these curses, and leaves their owners with only the benefits the objects provide. Bonus points for Rick literally giving Mr. Needful the finger. With both hands. While dancing.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: The Pluto subplot is a clear allegory for anthropocentric climate change and its deniers.
- Evil Laugh: Both Rick and the Devil. They even end up trying to out-laugh each other.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Rick and Morty is already an adult show so there is not really much of a radar to dodge, but the penultimate scene in the episode stands out. One of the mean-spirited people that Rick and Summer beat up holds a sign that says "God Hates Fags". This was uncensored... on the [adult swim] broadcast. Seriously, how in the high hell did they get away with that at a TV-14 rating? Not even MA-rated shows on the same block such as The Boondocks could get away with that.
- Green-Eyed Monster: He denies it, but Rick is clearly jealous when Summer prefers hanging out with and looking up to Mr.Needful instead of him, to the point of going out of his way to destroy Mr. Needful's business.
- Heel Realization: Jerry realizes how awful he's being just because he doesn't want to admit he's wrong when he sees King Floppy Nips willing to throw Scroopy Noopers, his son, into high security prison "Plutonamo Bay" just to keep the lid on Pluto's destruction.
- Ignored Epiphany: After Rick injects Goldenfold with an impotence cure, the latter runs off with his harem screaming "I haven't learned a thing!"
- L33t L1ng0: n33dful.com.
- Literary Allusion Title: The episode's title is a reference to Ray Bradbury's novel Something Wicked This Way Comes, about a mysterious man who runs a traveling carnival and grants wishes, but they come at a price. note
- Little Shop That Wasnt There Yesterday: Needful Things, of course! (It used to be a Jamba Juice) And later Curse Purge Plus.
- Louis Cypher: Lucius Needful.
- Magic Versus Science: And as it turns out, science wins. Rick reverse-engineers a cursed microscope into a scanner that identifies the properties of the Devil's cursed items, then opens a business uncursing the items with technology.Rick: Hey, Morty, let me *urrrrp* let me *urrrrp* let me ask you a question real quick. Does evil exist, and if so, can one detect and measure it?
Rick: Rhetorical question, Morty. The answer's yes, you just have to be a genius.
- Mundane Utility: Rick invents a robot to pass him a plate of butter within arm's reach. The robot is intelligent enough to be horrified by the utter pointlessness of its existence.
- N-Word Privileges: Discussed. Rick remarks that the telescope he got from Mr. Needful would have made him literally mentally retarded. Morty tells him that the word is inherently derisive, as it's objected to by "powerful groups who think that they're doing the right thing." Rick's response? "Well, that's retarded."
- Obviously Evil: When Summer is shocked that Mr. Needful would betray her, he points out that she knows he's the devil. It should have been obvious what was coming.
- Oh, Crap!:Butter Robot: What is my purpose?
Rick: You pass butter.
Butter Robot: [looking at itself] Oh, my God!
Rick: Yeah, welcome to the club, pal.
- Off-Model: The Westboro Baptist Church member's sign changes from "God Hates Fags" to "God Hates You" for a single frame before Rick and Summer beat him up, supposedly because the writers didn't know if the network would allow them to say "fag."
- Overly Long Gag: Morty telling Jerry to knock next time he comes into his room.
- Overly Preprepared Gag: Retaliation, that is. At the end of the episode, Rick and Summer work out hard for weeks or months in order to give the Devil a good beating. Apparently, it was Worth It.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: Rick and Summer, after using steroids to become muscular, go around beating up many an Asshole Victim: First Mr. Needful in Revenge for him betraying Summer, then other scumbags like a homophobic religious zealot with a "God Hates Fags" sign, a Neo-Nazi, a school bully picking on another kid, and a man mistreating his dog.
- Person as Verb: "You're Zuckerberging me?"
- Pet the Dog:
- Beth encouraging Morty to let his father help him with his science project because she knows how insecure Jerry is about his intelligence and doesn't want to hurt his feelings. Considering how dismissive or even abusive she usually is to her husband, that's especially nice of her.
- Despite initially refusing, Rick does take Summer to work.
- After completely making life a living hell to Mr. Needful and pissing off Summer, Rick is left wandering around the empty house trying to hang out with someone but fails and settles with his butter robot, who tells him he wasn't programmed for social interaction. Once Morty arrives from Pluto and asks Rick to help him with his science project, Rick plays it cool to hide his loneliness.
- Pluto Is Expendable: It is revealed that Pluto used to be a planet, but is shrinking and close to destruction due to its inhabitants mining Plutonium from its core.
- Produce Pelting: When Jerry finally announces that Pluto is not a planet, he gets things thrown at him by the audience.
- The store is called Needful Things, and the sign is written in the font ITC Benguiat, which has appeared on more Stephen King dust jackets than you can shake a stick at.
- Rick describes the store's products as "Twilight Zone, Ray Bradbury, Friday the 13th: The Series voodoo crap magic.''Rick: This was all just a bit... like when Bugs Bunny fucks with the opera singer for twenty minutes.
- The Devil breaking out into a fiddle solo in celebration. (Yes, it's "The Devil Went Down To Georgia".)
- Rick refers to Summer sarcastically as Rosemary's Baby.
- In it's final scene, the butter-passing robot utters a flat, quick "Butter," a reference to the Kraft Parkay Butter commercials.
- Solar System Neighbors: The B-plot has Jerry's insistence that Pluto is a planet leading to him meeting the natives.
- Sorry to Interrupt: Morty calls his dad out for bursting into his room without knocking.
- Spiteful Spit: Summer spits on the devil after they roughed him up in the closing scene. In the tag, she and Rick are seen spitting on their Bully Hunter victims.
- The Stinger: The still-muscular-from-steroids Rick and Summer (having beaten up the Devil at the end of the episode) go around beating the crap out of other shitty people, such as a Neo-Nazi, a school bully, a homophobe, and an animal abuser.
- Sufficiently Analyzed Magic: Despite the Devil's powers being presumably supernatural in nature, Rick is able to use science to analyze and neutralize his cursed items (or at least removing the negative effects).
- Surrounded by Idiots: When an alien asks Morty if everyone in his family is an idiot, Morty says "Well, for sure me and my dad are."
- Take That!: Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg's name is synonymous with the act of betrayal.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: I'm the devil, bitch!
- Three Wishes: Summer uses a monkey paw (the one thing the store couldn't get rid of) to save the devil from committing suicide, by wishing for a lighter desk, a looser knot and knowing CPR.Mr. Needful: Jesus, what a waste of a monkey paw!
- Throw the Dog a Bone: Mr. Goldenfold has an My God, What Have I Done? breakdown when he discovers that the aftershave he bought from Mr. Needful makes women attracted to him but also makes him impotent. When he's collapsed to his knees and wailing about how he deserves this terrible fate, Rick injects Goldenfold with a serum that cures his impotence, who then gleefully runs off with his three new lady-friends.Mr. Goldenfold: I haven't learned a thing!
- Training Montage: Complete with steroid use.
- Was Just Leaving: When Rick accompanies Summer to the Devil's shop, Summer announces that Rick was "just leaving" in hope he would get the hint and leave. But Rick decides to stick around.
- Wimp Fight: Between Rick and the Devil.
- Your Makeup Is Running: Summer's makeup is running when she returns home sobbing after being dumped by the devil.
Then we let it pop, go, let it go!
X gon' give it to ya, he gon' give it to ya
X gon' give it to ya, he gon' give it to ya...