ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Rick and Morty: Go to Hell,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Rick and Morty: Go to Hell #1

Rick and Morty: Go to Hell #1 is published by Oni Press and written by Ryan Ferrier, illustrated by Constanza Oroza, colored by Sarah Stern, and lettered by CRANK!. It finally happened, Rick and Morty are in hell, or so Morty thinks. Rick on the other hand is not buying this for a second, and demands to speak to the person in charge.

The grandfather and grandson duo have a rip-roaring, existential debate while they traverse the rocky terrain of what Morty thinks is the afterlife. The further they go, the more clues that pop up suggesting this could be the real deal, this could be Hell.

Rick and Morty: Go to Hell #1 is dialogue heavy, and for good reason. Ferrier has done justice to the opening issue in the series by laying the foundations for the plot by having Rick and Morty essentially on opposite ends of the spectrum as they tackle this abstract concept. The joy of the story is in the intelligence of the discussion between the two characters.

Morty serves as a good narrative instrument for the visuals we see in the panels. All of the elements surrounding them would certainly suggest that is indeed Hell. Rick, however, drives the dialogue forward by refuting every single clue with his scientific approach, and known fact. Rick even bashes Morty’s approach to the argument calling him out for utilizing a “straw-man argument”.

Ferrier really tests the limits of Rick’s rationality throughout the issue by throwing obstacle after obstacle, but then counteracts it with a level of reasoning, mixed with a level of disdain at the mere mortals that surround him, that would definitely come from someone with the intellect of Rick Sanchez.

The humor is fairly solid and enough to cause some chuckles. If you’ve watched any adult animation there are some telegraphed jokes relating to Florida and College for example. The real meat of the humor is solely connected with how sharply Rick rejects literally every ounce of suggested evidence in front of him. At one point he even references that even though it smells like they are cooking people here, doesn’t mean this is hell, because most planets around the universe eat humans, and so has Rick.

The artwork from Oroza is very consistent throughout the issue, with nothing particularly mindblowing to reference. I believe Oroza will have a lot to offer in the coming issues, but as mentioned at the top of the review, this #1 is more plot. It’s narrative-driven with a lot of space taken for the dialogue. This is nothing to take away from the contributions of Oroza, it just wasn’t the focus of the comic.

Stern’s coloring is again, very consistent. Unfortunately, there is a level of comparison that will ultimately be drawn given the comic series is based on the show, and I found at times the colors to be slightly dulled. There wasn’t any particular panel that really popped with colors as I’d expect from something as visually visceral as a setting in Hell would be. Finally, the lettering from CRANK! blends well into the issue — highly earned praise given the issue is so dialogue heavy.

Overall it’s a fun set up for a new Rick and Morty series that has the promise to deliver something great moving forward. The pace of the issue may not be for everyone, and the visual work is ok, but I’m willing to see where this is all headed!

Rick and Morty: Go to Hell #1 is available in stores on June 10th.

Rick and Morty: Go to Hell #1
3.5

TL;DR

Overall it’s a fun set up for a new Rick and Morty series that has the promise to deliver something great moving forward. The pace of the issue may not be for everyone, and the visuals work are ok, but I’m willing to see where this is all headed!