The following contains spoiler for Rick and Morty season 4 episode 1.
Death is simply not that big a deal in Rick and Morty. Young Morty Smith (whose name happens to include the Latin base for “death”) learned to confront his mortality early on when he and Rick jumped into an alternate universe where their counterparts had died. Nothing helps you help come to terms with your death quite like burying you own corpse in the backyard.
There’s a sense that when someone or something dies on Rick and Morty it doesn’t have to mean the ultimate end. We know there are infinite universes after all. In fact, when Rick dies roughly five minutes into the Rick and Morty season 4 premiere, “Edge of Tomorty: Rick, Die, Rickpeat,” there’s little reason to mourn him. It’s natural to assume that Rick will have some sort of network of clones set up to download his consciousness into. Of course it turns out he has exactly that.
But “Edge of Tomorty: Rick, Die Rickpeat” introduces a new mortal element to the show’s deathly lexicon with “death crystals.” Death crystals have some unique properties in the Rick and Morty multiverse.
“Death crystals show you how you’re going to die,” Rick explains. “Your future stems from your present which if you’re living right, keeps changing.” Therefore anyone who grabs hold of the crystal will be inundated with multiple visions of their future death. Those visions change as the person’s circumstances change. Sure enough, Morty picks up a death crystal and sees no fewer than 12 versions of his own death, which cycle and change as he moves about his environment.
Morty, of course, becomes fixated on one possible future death in which an elderly version of his crush, Jessica, attends to him as he dies in his bed. Morty moves heaven and earth to make sure that this version comes to pass and in the process goes full “Akira.” Still, there are so many other Morty deaths that the death crystals reveal and that Rick and Morty’s animators kindly took the time to render.
So for the benefit of the Easter egg conscious among you, we took the liberty of tracking all the potential ways that Morty will one day die. The death crystal displays 12 or so hazy versions at a time, all barely visible in the peripherals of the crystalized screen. Therefore it’s possible we may have missed a few but for now, here is a mostly complete list of al the many deaths of Morty Smith.
– Bomb disarming accident
– Falling off a cliff
– Getting splashed with a deadly chemical that removes all his skin
– Choking on spaghetti in an alien restaurant
– Getting sucked into an airplane toilet
– Being clubbed over the head in a snowy environment
– Head stuck in elevator, which then elevates, decapitating him.
– Crushed by a 4×4 piece of wood crashing through his windshield in traffic.
– Heart attack
– Electric chair administered by alien prison guards.
– Poisoned alien berries that inflate and eventually burst his head
– Falling down a flight of stairs
– Magician throwing knife accident
– Incinerated while holding a fence, Terminator: Judgment Day-style.
– Embolism on the toilet
– Star Wars-style trash compactor
– Tied to a brick and dropped into the ocean
– Eaten by a Venus flytrap-esque alien plant.
– Impaled by a flagpole wielded by a bully and then stabbed repeatedly in the mouth.
– Bashed to death with a fire extinguisher wielded by bully.
– Decapitated by bully jumping onto an overturned metal trashcan.
– Crushed by dumpster with assist from bully.
– Smashed by mailbox that bully is using like a hammer.
– Hit by a truck while walking and texting.
Well there you have it. As a frequent intergalactic and inter-dimensional traveler, Morty has a lot of exotic death options. Still, it’s reassuring to know that even the Mortyest Morty needs to look both ways before crossing the street.