Rick Sanchez is a fictional character from the cartoon TV series Rick and Morty (2013–present). He is also known as the smartest man in the universe, and today we want to know what he thinks about happiness.
We have already discussed what Christopher Langan, the smartest man in the world, considers to be happiness. Now we are looking at a higher perspective. I understand the contradiction in comparing a real person to a fictional character, but sometimes we need to think outside of our everyday life to gain perspective.
Consequently, our analysis of “Happiness According To Rick Sanchez” will be based on the TV series, and we will not be taking into account any comics or speculative theories regarding Rick Sanchez. Specifically, we are speaking of Rick C-137, the main character of Rick and Morty, and originally from Dimension C-137 (simply known as Rick).
This is because there are an infinite amount of Rick Sanchezes (e.g., Tiny Rick, Cronenberg Rick, Cool Rick, and Evil Rick), sometimes with multiple versions per universe, such as in the case of decoys, robots, split personalities, or more (e.g., Sleeping Rick).
There are, of course, infinite other parallel universes, where, for example, Evil Morty is likely one of the smartest people in the universe. We consider the Central Finite Curve, which is stated as follows:
“Do you know what the Central Finite Curve is? They built a wall around infinity, separated all the infinite universes from all the infinite universes where he’s the smartest man in the universe.” – Evil Morty
So How Smart Is Rick Sanchez?
Here are a few facts that prove he’s the smartest man in the universe:
- He invented a portal gun – it allows him to travel across the universe, visit parallel universes, and even meet alternative versions of himself.
- He fights a new supervillain almost every episode – almost every episode he defeats someone like Zeus, the Devil, or the Galactic Empire, eating them for breakfast, so to say, all while not breaking a sweat.
- He has even broken the fourth wall – he knows he is a fictional character and he is making the most of this knowledge.
How Happy is Rick Sanchez?
Let’s first look at Rick’s backstory. We know very little about Rick Sanchez’s young life. We don’t know who the parents of Rick Sanchez are and whether they were geniuses, too – perhaps this will be a part of a future episode.
We know that Rick was married to Diane Sanchez, who gave birth to their daughter Beth Smith. Beth later married a “loser,” Jerry Smith, and gave birth to grandkids Morty Smith and Summer Smith.
Unfortunately, Diane Sanchez was tragically killed by Rick Prime, leading Rick into a depression, alcoholism, and an obsessive search for revenge on Rick Prime – something we just might be seeing in season 7, whenever it may come.
So yes, Rick has a dark side, which he compensates for by drinking, overworking, and on a good side by reconnecting with his grandkids and their family. Despite his attempts to hide it, Rick cherishes the adventures he goes on with Morty and his family.
In fact, Rick values good relationships, which are hard to come by—something he tried to establish with one of his few friends, Bird Person.
In some ways, Rick tries to hide his attachment to others by saying things like:
“Listen, Morty, I hate to break it to you, but what people call ‘love’ is just a chemical reaction that compels animals to breed. It hits hard, Morty, then it slowly fades, leaving you stranded in a failing marriage.”
On the other hand, Rick states that:
“To the extent that love is an expression of familiarity over time, my access to infinite timelines precludes the necessity of attachment. In fact, I even abandoned one of my infinite daughters in an alternate version of Earth that was taken over by mutants.”
In essence, Rick realizes the nature of being human, which is being attached to someone, and he cannot just replace them no matter how many universes or versions of Rick, Beth, Bird Person, or anyone else are out there. In fact, on multiple occasions Rick tried to get with a different version of his family and friends only to find how much easier it was to stick with the version of people he knows.
Happiness According to Rick Sanchez
Still, there are some sources of happiness for Rick’s life, such as his epic adventures he goes on, which reveal a bit about his formula for happiness according to Rick Sanchez. Here are a few things we know:
“To live is to risk it all. Otherwise, you’re just an inert chunk of randomly assembled molecules drifting wherever the universe blows you.”
By this, Rick Sanchez laughs in the face of fear, never stopping himself from doing something because he is afraid.
“I’m sorry Summer, your opinion means very little to me.”
He states similar things about opinions of others, meaning that he has a very high self-esteem and he doesn’t measure his self-worth by the opinions of others. To the same extent, Rick states:
“Every breath I take without your permission raises my self-esteem.”
“Your boo’s mean nothing, I’ve seen what makes you cheer.”
Of course, there is some negative undertone in the words of Rick Sanchez as having ultimate power over everything and everyone comes with certain negative “what else is there” realizations:
“Nobody exists on purpose, nobody belongs anywhere, everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
Limits of Happiness According To Rick Sanchez
Lastly, we can see that the writers of Rick and Morty, in many ways, were playing out their own limited worldview about what happiness really is. This was crystal clear exemplified in the following dialogue between Rick and Morty:
“Rick: You know, it makes me wonder if there’s an algorithmic expression that could achieve the ideal ratio. Pfft! Listen to me, trying to calculate happiness over here.
Morty: Hoo, if anyone could, Rick.”
I disagree with this because there is a formula for ultimate and unlimited happiness that anyone can learn and achieve in their lives. I call this formula Optimal Happiness and, if you are interested, you can learn it too and become the happiest version of yourself.
Happiness According to Rick Sanchez: The End
In conclusion, Rick Sanchez challenges us on our view of happiness, by presenting a higher vantage point and asking us: what really matters? And in a world where we can be anyone and do anything, what would make us happy?
Ultimately, Rick Sanchez asks whether true and unconditional happiness is possible, because if anyone can find this formula for happiness, it is the smartest man in the world. So, do you agree with our analysis of what happiness is according to Rick Sanchez?