Rick and Morty season finale: Clone Beth 'skews a tad Star Wars-y'

Now, how long do fans have to wait for season 5 to begin?

Gael Cooper
CNET editor Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." She's been a journalist since 1989, working at Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Sidewalk, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and NBC News Digital. She's Gen X in birthdate, word and deed. If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
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Gael Cooper
3 min read

Which Beth is the clone, and does it honestly matter?

Video screenshot by Gael Fashingbauer Cooper/CNET

Rick and Morty ended season 4 on Sunday night with an episode that rewarded faithful viewers. While the season's been full of stand-alone episodes that didn't require any past knowledge on the viewer's part, Star Mort Rickturn of the Jerri featured a galaxy full of return characters and plot lines. If you missed Tammy and Bird Person (now Phoenix Person), longed to hear Susan Sarandon as Dr. Wong again, or wondered about the season 3 episode where Beth had a chance to clone herself, this was your episode.

(Warning: Spoilers for the season 4 finale of Rick and Morty ahead.)

Back in the season 3 episode called "The ABCs of Beth," Beth faced the option of staying with her family or heading off to spacey adventures while Rick replaced her with a clone. In this episode, we meet the Beth that presumably did go out into space, and she's a Star Wars-style badass. 

Both Beths end up surprisingly likable, and both are as tough as you might expect a daughter of Rick Sanchez to be. They even develop a weird friendship that isn't deterred by the reveal that Rick himself doesn't even seem to know which one is his real daughter. (Although he does tell Space Beth that her exploits are "skewing a tad Star Wars-y.") The two Beths make a satisfying team, and it'll be interesting to see if they're still playing the Doublemint Twins next season.

Other plots are lighter, but still fun. Just like they did in last week's Childrick of Mort, Summer and Morty end up teaming up. This time, it happens after a very funny fight over Rick's invisibility belt. Of course, Morty would try and use the belt to watch the cheerleaders shower, and of course, Summer would expose his plan. But it's always fun to see the Smith kids pairing up against their very weird world. 

"Oh yeah, we're like Luke and Leia," crows Summer. "Except no kissing part!" And Star Wars fans should enjoy the various nods to the franchise. Just like the Death Star, this episode's big space weapon has one small embarrassing fatal flaw. (Hint: Right about now, someone in the Wrangler Jeans PR department is hoping this show can do for them what it did for McDonald's Szechuan sauce.)

And then, there's Jerry. Oh, Jerry. His puppetry skills kind of came in handy during a Weekend at Bernie's-style scene, where he manipulates a corpse, but in true Jerry style, he messed things up. Jerry also seemed kind of excited about having two wives in his life, but whatever menage-a-Beth he thinks he's getting is almost certainly not happening. And it was kind of fitting that Jerry, who's always the lowest member of his own family, got elevated to star in the post-credits scene, involving a short-lived spinoff called Invisible Garbage Truck Jerry.

In an inside-the-episode video posted Sunday, show co-creator Dan Harmon addressed the two Beths issue. 

"I always felt that yeah, she's a clone, which means there's a Beth out there, let's meet her," Harmon said. "I wanted a version of Beth that was more like Rick, and therefore, ironically, hated Rick."

While the finale doesn't end up identifying which Beth is the clone, Harmon thinks fans will be OK with the non-answer. "Hopefully that's not a dissatisfying thing, because the answer is, 'One or the other,'" he said.

Fans have plenty of time to argue over which Beth is the real one, as the season 5 premiere date hasn't yet been announced. Can somebody get a Meeseeks up here to speed that return up a little?

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