What does Rick Sanchez do when he’s literally a pickle and also in a metaphoric pickle of being trapped in a sewer with no limbs? He gives himself the gift of mobility by controlling the brain of a cockroach. While there’s no real science behind Rick’s transformation in a pickle, controlling a cockroach’s movements through it’s brain is something you can do right now with your smartphone and you don’t even have to be Pickle Rick to do it.

A few years a go a team of Chinese researchers essentially hacked the brains of cockroaches realized they could manipulate them into making S-shaped and Z-shaped paths. Simultaneously researchers in the U.S. were also developing mind-controlled roaches. The goal at the University of Texas was to develop insects that could go into disaster zones to scout out information.

Next, of course, came the Kickstarter project, and now you can order a $119 cyborg cockroach kit off of Amazon. It only has a 2.5 star rating at the moment, but that’s because one of the reviewers has an ethical problem with turning cockroaches into robots that do our bidding. I’m sure that reviewer probably also has a bone to pick with Pickle Rick, who moved from insects to rat parts to turn himself into a briney superhero.


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