When I heard that a Rick and Morty episode had archives within it, I was a bit wary, as I watched an episode before about a supposed archivist, and nothing about the person being an archivist was mentioned. So, my expectations were pretty low, especially since I wasn’t drawn into the series when I tried to start watching it a while back. Since has some similarities with National Treasure, I thought it was worth a try to watch “Rick & Morty’s Thanksploitation Spectacular.”
This episode, on the face of it, seemed to have a focus on archives. In part, Morty says that stealing the Constitution is wrong, and Morty taunts Rick, asking if he is going to be an “America nerd” or if he is going help him steal the Constitution. Other than this, Michael McCarrick in CBR notes that the episode begins with breaking and entering the National Archives Museum, with the intention of “steal[ing] the U.S. Constitution for the sole purpose of using the hidden treasure map on it,”  with Rick calling the Constitution “a piece of paper with instructions on running a country” that isn’t necessary. But, this goes awry when Morty accidentally fires the laser gun which “destroys some of the Constitution…immediately blows off Abraham Lincoln’s head at the Lincoln Memorial…pass[es]…through the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall…and blowing up the Statue of Liberty.” McCarrick also notes that the episode has historical symbols defaced throughout, like the Washington Monument, a laser “slices through the American flag on the moon,” and Morty kills FDR who has become a spider mutation. This led McCarrick to say the show is “willing to recklessly destroy” famous American symbols and “show that the country can still survive without them.” This sends an interesting message, you could say, different than most shows.
However, the actual scene set in the archives is relatively short. It isn’t even a minute long, and the archives never appears in the episode after that point. Most of the episode focuses on trying to save the country from the invasion of turkeys with superhuman strength. Some sidestepped that they were in an archive altogether, calling it an “underground bunker” or just saying it references National Treasure, or saying that the episode itself is challenging American exceptionalism, one take that definitely has merit, along with being wonky in many ways. All in all, while the episode was enjoyable, it did not feature archives as much as I would have wanted, so it felt like a bit of a waste of time, unfortunate to to say. In any case, I hope to find some better examples in the future to feature on this blog.
 This is like National Treasure except in that film they stole the Declaration of Independence not the Constitution.