Living in the Rick and Morty universe is a dangerous thing. Those around Rick have to boast intelligence, common sense, and a range of skills that will help them survive out in the galaxy. However, not every member of the Smith family and the extended cast of the Adult Swim animated show are quite as competent though.
Competency can be measured in a variety of ways, but the actions of these individuals from across the history of the show talks loudest. There has been some very specific evolution among the group, which has allowed them to show their impressive capabilities. But in others, there’s perhaps no hope of change.
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Jerry isn’t the sharpest tool in the shed. In fact, it’s clear he lacks any real common sense. He seems more emotionally engaged than the rest of the Smith family and can relate to people on a different level, but even then, he can often be quite obvious and misreads situations.
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There has simply been no evolution in Jerry across the series. Perhaps he has managed to cling to his family a little tighter and learn some personal lessons, but, ultimately, when it comes to competency, there’s none to be seen. Jerry wouldn’t last a second without the help of Rick. It’s a dangerous galaxy and he’s always out of his depth.
9 The Vindicators
The Vindicators were supposedly one of the most powerful and competent superhero teams in the universe. Modeled as a parody of the Guardians Of The Galaxy, the team was no match for Rick and indeed seemed completely incompetent. Infighting and a lack of ability led to their downfall.
It’s a surprise that they bested anyone at all in their career, with bluster and chaos overtaking any semblance of tactical planning. If the group was to continue on after Rick’s intervention, it would be a shell of its former self; even that wasn’t too impressive to begin with, despite what Morty thought.
8 The President
The President of the United States has made both an enemy and an ally out of Rick and Morty. The fact is, he’s supremely intelligent and tries to stay one step ahead of the game. But he is woefully out of his league against some of the threats that he has had to face, even if he is one of the more interesting characters.
His competency in a political capacity seems to be fairly good, but in the world this series has created, he is unfit to lead against such monumental difficulties. His decision to stand against Rick was also incredibly stupid considering he must have known he could never stand a chance.
Beth could have led a very different life. In fact, she did. No one knows which Beth is the real one and which is fake, because a cloning of the character meant that her life could be separated into two halves; one a space-faring warrior and the other a mother and vet.
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As is clear, Beth is a woman of many talents. She’s so intelligent and takes on some of Rick’s own hubris and ego. She has clearly indicated that she could travel the stars and be very successful doing so, but can also continue to work as a vet. The question is, what are her limits, because viewers haven’t seen her tested enough.
Birdperson’s competency has to be measured (including the betrayal that he suffered). Like Rick, he leads from the front and there’s a reason the scientist respects Birdperson so much. When Birdperson was transformed, he was a powerful antagonist for Rick and Morty to face, because of his competency. As an alien, he is well versed with the difficulties of the galaxy and has overcome death so many times.
His only limitation was that he was hoodwinked by Tammy after he had fallen in love with her, proving that, he too, was capable of being manipulated and tricked.
Newcomers to Rick and Morty might notice that the series is largely episodic, but there are a few ongoing narratives that resurface every now and then. Tammy’s story is one such example, with the supposed ally to Rick and Morty and lover of Birdperson fooling everyone.
With Tammy actually working for a galactic federation of tyrants, she demonstrated how competent she was in her role bringing a powerful entity on her side in Birdperson. While she might eventually be defeated, it’s hard to overcome the wit and wisdom of Sanchez.
Summer is a Sanchez through and through. It’s fair to say that her story began with Summer being very passive in the grand scheme of things. But she has continued to demonstrate her own competency, with Rick impressed with the confidence and nerve of his granddaughter.
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She might not have the technological knowledge of her mother or grandfather and hasn’t had the same experiences as Morty, but she moves into a situation with such certainty and a brilliant level-head that it’s difficult for her to get caught off guard. She’s come a long way since her debut.
Morty is the second-in-command to Rick. The show has been about the journey the two have been on and how Rick’s grandson has slowly become more and more like a Sanchez rather than a Smith. He began life afraid and meek in the face of danger. However, now he is confident and a true surivor.
One day, he might be able to stand against Rick in the rivalry of who is more competent and there are flaws that Rick has that Morty does not. But at the same time, Morty can become self-obsessed, which distracts him from the task at hand. He’s still young and has so much more potential for the future.
Rick has hopped from planet to planet all his life, inventing and discovering as he goes. He’s a flawed human that allows his judgment to sometimes be affected by his emotions. But he’s also one of the most powerful forces in the universe.
He took down the Vindicators with ease, created a tiny civilization, and even defeated the galactic federation. While the Multiverse of Ricks and the Citadel illustrates how his flaws can get out of hand, ultimately, there’s hardly anyone more competent than Rick.
1 Evil Morty
The question of whether Evil Morty actually evil, or is he finally giving Rick the penance he deserves is one that lingers minds of many after the finale of Rick and Morty. The character has shown that of all the Mortys and indeed the Ricks, he is the most competent.
He single-handily took down the Citadel of Ricks and was always one step ahead of the smartest man in the universe. He did something that Rick could never do, seemingly leaving behind reality for a new Multiverse of opportunities. In the grand scheme of things, Evil Morty can’t be bested.
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Politics graduate, freelance writer and all around film geek. If George isn’t lecturing someone on the history of the MCU, he’s probably ranting about the political consequences of Boris Johnson’s latest hairstyle.
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