We got a clue to how the different dimensions work. These three dudes are obviously iterations of the same Rick who all encountered the same event in varying degrees of severity. It could just be that these three dimensions are right next to each other, but the numbering convention suggests that they’re true splits from one original dimension, caused by that event.
If that’s true, it means that every time a major event occurs, timelines splinter into different offshoot possibilities. The Ricks that stay most “normal” keep their original dimension number and the others take on an iteration of that number based on the level of divergence. This also helps account for how the population of the citadel bounced back so quickly after the massacre in S301. As time goes on more splits in dimensions means a constant influx of more Ricks and Mortys.
Not every rick invents the portal gun. The portal gun is rick’s ultimate source of power and what allows the citadel to exist. From what we learned from the half-truths in S301′s portal gun origin backstory, Ricks ostensibly go from dimension to dimension giving portal technology to other Ricks rather than each Rick inventing it on his own. Plus we saw in the last episode that the Mortytown Rick tries and fails to make portal fluid, and cop Rick calls it out “bootleg,” plus the factory Rick demands a portal gun because he must not be able to make one of his own.
For the Ricks that didn’t invent their own, portal fluid and guns are regulated and not allowed to all Ricks freely. It begs the question of how many Ricks actually invented the portal gun on their own. In theory, it would only take just one figuring it out and then sharing it with all the others.
More evidence for Evil Morty = Rick’s original Morty. This has been a fan theory since Evil Morty first showed up but after S307 the evidence is even stronger. Evil Morty dodges questions about his original dimension and Rick, instead diverting with “we moved around a lot.” That basically leaves the door wide open for the reveal of him being Rick’s og Morty.
Plus, if the moving around part wasn’t a lie, that means he and Rick skipped universes Cronenberg-style more than once (Rick did say he’d pulled that stunt before). Think how disillusioned just one dimension move made our Morty, it’s no wonder Evil Morty turned into what he is if he went through multiple ruined dimensions. Beyond that, our Morty has been shown to be getting more jaded and downright cruel this season, enough that people were thinking he was turning into Evil Morty. If our Morty has devolved into his current state with just being around our Rick for a few years, imagine how the Morty our Rick was around since when he was a baby would have turned out.
Cop Rick is alive for a reason. He killed Cop Morty and turned himself in expecting to be shot off into space, but in the end he’s released by Ricks under evil Morty’s control. Him being alive still is not insignificant, even if just for the narrative and character implications more than plot reasons.
Cop Rick’s first instinct is to trust. He trusted the Morty in the room with the crib. He trusted Cop Morty to do the right thing. He wants to believe in true justice and the goodness in people, and acts on that belief no matter the outcome for him.
The real gut punch is he’s not just an outlier. He shows that Ricks do have an infallible sense of justice when it’s not smothered out by narcissism and nihilism. We’ve seen that our Rick, despite being an asshole, will choose to do the right thing- even if it’s the hard thing- at crucial moments: He puts the collar on Morty instead of himself when they’re falling to their deaths in the void, he turns himself in to the Galactic Federation in order to save his family.
Cop Rick is still alive because he’s the hero our Rick would be if he wasn’t such a jaded asshole. He’s the proof that despite everything, Rick is at his core trying to be good. Maybe that kind of Rick is valuable to Evil Morty, or maybe it was just valuable to us to see this side of Rick so explicitly.
Evil Morty wants control. Evil Morty is living the ideal Morty existence, in control of himself and the universe around him. It’s all he’d want after a life where Rick was always in control, where he could do nothing to stop the machinations of the universe from nearly crushing him every adventure. As we saw really plainly with Copy Morty, when a Morty gets enough knowledge, experience, and freedom, they can’t stand being treated like sidekicks anymore. No wonder the Ricks put them in a school designed not to teach them to be more competent on adventures but instead to keep them helpless and subservient.
It’s easy enough to follow the same trend in our Morty. He’s been fighting for more control all season– He chooses not to try to rescue Rick from prison. He’s fine with going against Rick’s plan in the Mad Max world. He’s the one who makes them go on the adventure with the Vindicators (and Rick loses his shit when he doesn’t get to be the only one saving the day anymore). And perhaps most telling, Morty’s ideal toxin-free self abandons Rick entirely and creates a situation where his whole job is to manipulate and control other people.
Evil Morty is what happens when Morty’s struggle for power goes to it’s furthest degree. He wanted so bad to not be the sidekick anymore that he’d do anything, even if it meant becoming the villain.