It was possible that Rick and Morty's main Rick (from universe C-137) would pull another fast one on the audience at the end of season 5, with Evil Morty destroying the multiverse as we knew it and leaving the titular Rick and Morty in limbo as they tried to escape a destructing Council of Ricks, but it wouldnt be the first time Rick managed to destroy the Galactic Federations whole system at the start of season 3.
Rick C-137s background story was much different from what we had seen up until now. C-137 Rick watched his wife get killed by another Rick, and after some time spent trying to track him down, killing several Ricks, and generally getting messed up eventually crash-landed himself into a timeline where a Rick had abandoned his grown-up daughter and settled in.
If you are unsure whether or not this is the background on Rick and Mortys Rick, or if he had another lesson up his sleeve in the season 6 opener, Dan Harmon is here to remind us to let the fuck out.
Harmon tells Polygon that there's a lot more to the story. But im quite comfortable saying that I don't like to be coy, and in instances where we're being ambiguous, we always say we're being ambiguous.
Harmon cites season 3's The Rickshank Rickdemption and what he dubs the Shoneys Revelation, when Rick appeared to be trapped in a tragic memory to bait the Galactic Federation poking around in his head. At the time, Harmon says it was shown as a potential fabrication, but one that he himself liked as a true backstory.
Harmon explains that at that early stage in the programs run, I wanted to keep Ricks' backstory to myself. I would never tell an audience, or perhaps not! He showed Morty the truth, that's what he showed him. And we can't retcon that.
Justin Roiland, who co-created the show with Harmon and voices Rick, Morty, and a smattering of other characters in it, says the shift will hopefully impact the audience more than the characters themselves. Ricks actions resonate differently.
Do you think it will change how the audience perceives him now that they know that the terrible thing that happened to him is real? No, probably not. Because he's still going to be a fucking idiot.
He's learned all of this crap [where] he put these walls up, because he lost something that was very dear to him. And then he realized it didn't matter. [...] But it's still fucking dark to carry that around. So it'll be interesting to see the fans reaction more so than the character.
Harmon and Roiland say there's more breathing room for them to focus on securing the perfect balance of canonical storytelling and the hilarious, one-off adventures that the program is well-known for. They're not planning to pull the rug out of under us anytime soon.
Harmon concludes that there is certainly a lot more to the story than we saw initially. [But] it's basically a confirmation that the Shoneys are not a fake out, right?