With its seventh episode, “Full Meta Jackrick,” “Rick and Morty” season 6 continues to stray from the eponymous duo’s multiversal escapades. One of the most meta episodes of the program to date, Full Metal Jacket (1987 directed and produced by Stanley Kubrick,) is referenced in the title. In the episode, Rick and Morty are caught in a never-ending loop of the show’s “previously on” section. Therefore, in order to resume their customary story, they are compelled to break the fourth wall. Along the way, they run across an old enemy and meet an unexpected mentor. Returning alongside Jesus Christ and Story Lord this time is Joseph Campbell (as portrayed by Harmon), who pushes everything much past its logical limit. (tvacute.com) Here is all the information you need to know about the conclusion of “Rick and Morty” season 6 episode 7 if you’re wondering if Rick and Morty win this war of metal allusions!
Rick and Morty Season 6 Episode 7 Recap
A “previously on” section that appears at the beginning of “Full Meta Jackrick” is actually a meta-commentary about the show’s resistance to continuity in the age of serialized television. Beginning with clips from earlier in the season, the sequence gradually gets stranger until it reaches absolute surrealism. When Rick (Justin Roiland) proposes to Morty (Justin Roiland), he recommends a secluded chamber for their honeymoon. And this is where the episode’s grandiose plot is revealed: Aliens named Previous Leon (Justin Roiland), a gigantic, green insect-like entity with the ability to change the narrative structure, are controlling Rick and Morty.
Rick commands Morty to keep saying, “Next time on ‘Rick and Morty,'” within the locked room. Previous Leon becomes apparent thanks to the word, which negates his abilities. He drags Rick and Morty through the show’s opening credits as they argue. The fact that they get electrocuted by the title card before falling back into the garage is a really amusing detail. Morty begins to stress out understandably in the garage. Rick explains a portal as a weakness in the fourth wall that allows previous Leon to elude capture and enter the metanarrative layer. Yes, that sort of scenario is about to occur. The metanarrative layer is portrayed as a landscape with trails leading to various story patterns and tropes, and the two search for Previous Leon there. “A load of groan-inducing language for seven TV critics that won’t even love it,” Rick says of the entire notion. Ouch, first of all. And secondly, accurate, yeah.
Previous Leon is discovered by Rick and Morty is practically buried in the weeds. Even “weeds” is spelled out in the branches. But hold on to your plumb uses, people—we’re only at the surface of this meta Matryoshka doll. He begins to pray after chasing Previous Leon into a ravine. Jesus Christ shows up, just like in that episode, and Story Lord also makes a comeback. Rick, of course, has no memory of either Jesus or Story Lord because “Never Ricking Morty” was entirely set within a toy train that was advertised as “Rick and Morty” swag. Morty, on the other hand, is familiar with the toy train and knows them as its characters. According to Story Lord, he entered the metanarrative layer by transcending reality using the Bible story he was imprisoned in at the conclusion of that event. Prior to beating the snot out of Rick and Morty, Jesus rips out Previous Leon’s wings. He then executes what Rick refers to as “the Bane,” dropping Rick down his knee and cracking his vertebrae.
Before Jesus can complete the task, Previous Leon attacks him and makes up a new narrative for him in which Jesus passes away from old age. Because of this, the genuine Jesus also ages and passes away. Tale Lord, in the meantime, claims that his character’s drive is discovering a motivation, so he seeks out the author of the “Never Ricking Morty” story train. He discovers the author to be a blue alien who suspiciously resembles “Rick and Morty” creator and producer Dan Harmon in a run-down toy store. Even in his office, he has a whiteboard with Harmon’s notorious “story circle” written on it. According to the author, the reason why Story Lord is such a weak character is because the Ricks who hired him to write the story for the story train only presented him half-baked ideas before losing interest in the undertaking. In response to Story Lord’s pleading for a motivation, the writer curtly replies that his motivation is the desire to discover motivation. Unhappy, Story Lord abducts the author.
The Self-Referential Six, a group of aliens with the ability to alter narrative structures, have a citadel. Rick and Morty take a captured Previous Leon there. One of these causes continuity mistakes, another plot twists, while a third causes flashbacks. You see what I mean. After defeating the Six, Rick finds Brett Con, a prisoner with the ability to alter history, who is his intended victim. Rick points out that this is the opposite of the story because The Six are keeping him in a sports-themed prison. When Morty remarks that “Rhett Con” would also work, Brett Con shows off his strength by retrospectively changing his name to Rhett Con. When the Self-Referential Six arrive and Rhett retcons the stronghold into a gigantic orange, Rick is forced to release him despite his request for Rhett Con to retcon him from ever having visited the citadel. When the episode resumes, Rick and Morty are slogging through a cold wasteland and on the verge of dying from exposure after going too far outside the fourth wall. They are saved by a hooded stranger as the last of their strength begins to dwindle. They find themselves in Joseph Campbell’s company when they awaken.
In his writings “The Hero’s Journey” and “The Hero with a Thousand Faces,” literary professor Joseph Campbell developed the thesis that all stories have a similar framework. The actor who plays Campbell is a well-known admirer of the academic and modelled his renowned “story circle” on Campbell’s purported monomyth. Campbell’s appearance here may be the result of Harmon’s deliberate self-parody or an unconscious deification and hero worship of his most significant influence. It’s most likely a combination of the two. On the one hand, Campbell challenges Rick and Morty to think of one enjoyable story that doesn’t have an elderly man eating soup, which they do right away. On the other hand, an animation depicting Campbell’s actual office has been painstakingly produced by the animation team.
But Campbell tells Rick and Morty that every character is meta and that chaos feeds and consumes them all. “A map to a location rich in narrative ore,” he hands them. The device Rick and Morty create to return to their primary reality is revealed in the montage to have been a “previously on” from Previous Leon. They are dropped back through the title card when they enter the portal. The writer who was kidnapped by Story Lord is compelled to create a (different) device that drains the motivation from everyone in the universe. As Story Lord gains inspiration from individuals all throughout the galaxy, Rick and Morty appear to stop him. Morty must prevent Story Lord from operating his machine since, despite Rick’s best efforts, the writer is practically unstoppable due to his newly discovered motivation. Instructing Morty to inform the author that he is only glad of his creation’s success because he wants to be creative, but that creativity has transformed him into a villain, the ghost of Joseph Campbell appears. He needs to cease creating in order to be heroic. Campbell’s statement persuades the writer to stop turning the crank, and Story Lord loses interest, making it possible for Rick to triumph.
Given the more loathsome aspects of the philosopher’s views and the influence the show has had on both “Rick and Morty” and “Community,” it is difficult to dismiss Campbell’s influence. Campbell’s monomyth has been criticized for using selective data that prioritized Western narrative styles. Additionally, Campbell was charged of antisemitism and anti-Black racism by critic Brendan Gill in a 1989 article for The New York Review of Books. This episode’s elevation of Campbell to sainthood is enough to make people wonder.
In any event, after hearing from Morty that Joseph Campbell wants him to kill Story Lord, the writer agrees and suffocates the character with a Rick plushie. The writer returns to his depressing office after Morty burns the narrative machine with a fresh idea for a movie. The ghost of Campbell tries to dissuade him from writing it, but the writer is blind to him. It has a strong resemblance to Harmon’s own self-doubt.