"M. Night Shaym-Aliens!" is the fourth episode of the first season of Rick and Morty. It is the fourth episode of the series overall. It premiered on January 13, 2014. It was written by Tom Kauffman and directed by Jeff Myers.
The episode opens with Rick dissecting a large rat in the garage complaining about the sloppy workmanship. Morty stops in to comment on the beautiful day before a very robotic Beth gets into a car and leaves for work. Rick is shown acting suspicious of the day's events, as well as Morty. Morty leaves for school and is called up to the front of the class by Mr. Goldenfold, who asks him to teach the class, despite Morty's seemingly incorrect answer to a math question. A classmate asks Morty to share the recipe for concentrated dark matter, and a reluctant Morty is nearly enticed by Jessica into doing so before Rick bursts in and pulls Morty away.
Rick tells Morty to get naked as they scramble into some locker room showers. Rick explains that they are actually trapped in a simulation of real-life by a race of 'intergalactic scammers' called Zigerions. Rick tells Morty that they'll be safe if they're naked, as the alien race is immensely uncomfortable with the sight of nudity.
Meanwhile, Jerry has been abducted into the simulation too, and calmly goes about the day's events without noticing the numerous glitches, as the simulation is made to run on very low capacity. Jerry drives to work and gives a pitch for a marketing slogan for apples (Hungry for Apples?), which the board members approve. Jerry is filled with unbound confidence and promptly leaves to make love to the simulated Beth.
Rick and Morty plan an impromptu rap concert, and Rick orders the crowd to perform a wide variety of actions in order to saturate the RAM and freeze the CPU, thus, the simulation. The duo manages to escape from the simulation, sneak into the ship, steal some Crystallized Core Processing Units and proceed to an escape pod. As they fly back to Earth and return to the garage, Rick's enters the passcode to a hidden safe, which refuses to open. The garage then melts away, proving that they are still trapped in the simulation.
Prince Nebulon appears and taunts Rick for thinking he escaped, revealing that the Zigerions have always had the recipe for concentrated dark matter, but Rick pulls Morty's pants down to cause a diversion, leading to a chase throughout the ship. Back in the simulation, Jerry returns to work in order to confess his slogan is a rip-off, but his boss is caught in an infinite loop of snapping his fingers and saying "Yes!". In the span of a minute Jerry is fired, rehired, and then nominated for an 'Appley Award.' Jerry wins the award, and gives a heartfelt speech about how that day was the best day of his life, before the simulation crashes.
Rick and Morty reunite with Jerry as they attempt to find a real escape pod to use. They climb into one but are promptly pursued by Zigerion ships. Rick orders Morty to mix 2 parts cesium, 1 part plutonic quartz, and an entire (12ox/355mL) bottled water to create concentrated dark matter. But then, Morty freezes and the ship fades away, proving that it was just Rick and Jerry in the simulation all along. Prince Nebulon reappears victorious and allows them to leave.
While throwing a victory celebration, the Zigerions mix the listed components to make the dark matter, but their ship promptly explodes, proving that Rick knew he was in a simulation since at least the time he was tricked into entering the safe combination. Rick sings the saxophone part to Baker Street by Gerry Rafferty as their shuttle flies away.
In a post-credits sequence, Jerry gives the Hungry for Apples pitch at an actual board meeting, which fails miserably. Rick then approaches the real Morty in bed, pulling a knife on him and yelling at him, calling him a "little bitch" repeatedly, to prove he's not a simulation before passing out asleep.
- Prince Nebulon
- All known Zigerions (Extinction)
- Many imprisoned aliens on the ship
- The episode's name is based on the movie director M. Night Shyamalan, who's known for his continuous use of story-line twists.
- The song played throughout the episode and during the credits is an instrumental version of "Baker Street" by Gerry Rafferty.
- A cameo of a Frosted Strawberry|Pop-tart is seen in episode driving a toaster to work.
- Summer doesn't appear in this episode.
- Beth technically also doesn't appear in the episode, only appearing as a simulation.
- This is also the only episode where Morty doesn't make any appearance at all, as he's just a simulation. (Apart from briefly in the post credits scene).
- There are several hints throughout the episode that Morty was being simulated, and that Rick was aware of it the whole time.
- Rick watching Morty suspiciously at the end of the first scene when Morty bumped into the garage wall.
- Rick acting out-of-character and goofing around with Morty when they're gathering crystals, probably to see if he would notice.
- When the second simulation ended, the crystals that were gathered do not disappear.
- The Zigerions referring to Jerry as another human in the simulation, as opposed to a third.
- After Jerry's simulation ends, he is still wearing the simulated tuxedo.
- When Rick pulls Morty's pants down to allow them to escape from the Zigerions, Morty immediately pulls his pants up to allow the Zigerions to follow, hinting that he is simulated.
- Before the third simulation ends, all the supplies Rick needed for concentrated dark matter were coincidentally on board the ship.
- When boarding the escape ship to leave the Zigerion ship in the second simulation, Rick simply pushes over the guard, causing the guard to fall down with no resistance. This allows Rick, Morty, and Jerry to get onto the ship where they are forced into the situation to make concentrated dark matter.
- In real-life, cesium is highly reactive in water and explodes if it comes into contact with it.
- Right before the explosion occurred, Rick mentioned to Jerry that all the actions he committed would not have mattered overall as that time of his life was running in a simulation on low power.
- Rick's line to Morty at the escape ship "I guess they really do have concentrated dark matter huh?" is to test if the simulation (through Morty) would budge Rick into telling the formula for the concentrated dark matter which succeeded, leading Rick into misleading the simulation about a false recipe for concentrated dark matter.
- Jerry losing his job in this episode would be continued in the episode Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind, where he would be looking for job opportunities on the internet and telling Doofus Rick that he's "In between advertising jobs" and again in Look Who's Purging Now, where Jerry starts begging Summer to float him some money making her yell at him to get a job. He would later be heard talking to a guy on the phone who's job is to just talk to lonely people, so that Beth could tell him the same thing.
- According to commentary on the Season 1 DVD, the scene in which Morty is in class was originally going to end in an orgy.
- Prince Nebulon is seen mixing the Plutonic Quartz and Cesium in the wrong order and quantity which is shown through the bottles as opposed to Simulation Morty's mix at the ship. It's unclear if this is an error or just recklessness in Prince Nebulon's part.
- The main reason why the ship blew up was because cesium is highly reactive and explosive when coming in contact with water. However, with the 2 parts of Plutonic Quartz, the explosion was even worse.
- The Zigerions are references to Nigerian online scammers. Not only do the terms rhyme but Rick describes the Zigerions as "... the galaxy's most ambitious and least successful con artists..."
- When traveling up the third simulation in zero-gravity, captured silhouettes of many different aliens can be seen, including many Gromflomites and a Plutonian. In one of the captured pods, a silhouette of the Iron Giant from the movie The Iron Giant, as well as Q*Bert from the arcade game Q*Bert and Ignignokt from Aqua Teen Hunger Force can also be seen.
- Plutonians also appear again whilst Rick, Morty, and Jerry try to escape the Zigerion ship.
- Rick shoves his and Morty's clothes into a sewer to prevent Morty from getting dressed. However, the next scene the two appear in, they are again wearing their standard attire (with some small adjustments to match the rap/hip-hop theme of the 'concert' they're putting on). No explanation is given as to how the two are able to find clothes again.
View the full transcript of this episode here.
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