Rick and Morty Season 5 Episode 4 Review: ‘Rick and Morty comfort food’

Rick and Morty season 5 episode 4 ‘Rickdependence Spray’ is a massive return to form for the series after the disappointing ‘A Rickconvenient Mort.’ Episode 4 offers an almost-classic Rick and Morty team-up along with great roles for Summer and Beth, as well as a sniveling cowardly role for Jerry — him at his best, basically — and the return of Keith David’s fantastic POTUS. It offers a fantastic, exciting, and truly disgusting adventure, and while it may seem forced in parts, that’s usually intentional for pure comedy effect.

‘Rickdependence Spray’ Review

Rick and Morty Season 5 Episode 4

Dispensing with the ’90s cartoon riffs, ‘Rickdependence Spray’ goes for a classic “Earth under attack by an invading force” story along with either Rick or, in this case, Morty being the cause of it all. The setup is incredibly forced, but as it feels completely intentional it makes it all the funnier — Morty uses the horse inseminator at Beth’s work to masturbate, and Rick’s following experiment with what he thinks is horse semen blows up and produces massive carnivorous flying sperm. That’s the first two minutes, and the action only gets crazier from there.

The President recruits the whole family as they immediately assume Rick is behind it all, which he and Morty deny as neither want to admit what’s really going on. Rick, Morty, and a load of specifically-male disposable side characters go to the Grand Canyon to blow up the monster sperm, as that’s where they’re nesting. It all goes wrong, of course, as the sperm are gaining intelligence and bring down their helicopter with a trebuchet (not a catapult). Rick and Morty quickly become the only survivors and meet the Borg-like Sperm Queen (yep), who wants to use Morty to expand their army — which is when a friendly sperm Morty names ‘Sticky’ comes to help.

The remaining sperm are drawn to Las Vegas after the President creates a giant egg based on Summer, which is when Morty admits that the sperm are his — so the plan now becomes to destroy all the sperm before they impregnate the egg and create a giant incest baby. Then Morty, Rick, and Sticky are kidnapped by CHUDs, the horse people from the center of the Earth, leading Morty to admit, “this is out there, even for us.” He’s not wrong.

Rick and Morty season 5, episode 4 ending explained

Rick and Morty Season 5 Episode 4 ending explained

They get away from the horse people, and broker peace between CHUD and humankind, as the CHUD king’s daughter is apparently pregnant with Rick’s baby. The CHUDs help the humans fight back against the sperm, and Sticky ends up killing the Sperm Queen, only to impregnate the egg himself. The President refuses to destroy the fetus during an election year, and it’s sent into space instead. The post-credits scene reintroduces the giant space baby in a reference to the classic 1986 sci-fi movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, complete with ‘‎Also Sprach Zarathustra’ by Strauss, except the astronaut is seemingly killed.

The episode is incredibly self-aware, like most Rick and Morty stories, but the escalation of events feels particularly forced in episode 5 — which would be a criticism, except the show is clearly aware of this fact and uses it to milk as much comedy out of every situation as it can. There’s a whole side-plot with Beth and Summer about feminism and how men really don’t know how to handle sperm, but it’s pushed to extremes and is entirely for comedy value, especially as the show has shown just how bad-ass both Beth and Summer can be on many occasions.

While ‘Rickdependence Spray’ may not go down as one of the best Rick and Morty episodes, it’s a much-needed classic-style story for season 5 in the wake of the more serious episode 3 and the truly insane episodes 1 and 2. It’s got an invasion by weird monsters, an experiment of Rick’s gone wrong, Morty’s sexual immaturity being the cause of the problem, and the return of Keith David’s fantastic President. It’s basically Rick and Morty comfort food, and when it’s as funny as this episode, that’s fine by us.