The “Rick and Morty” creators have turned to Clive Barker’s “Hellraiser” for inspiration on more than one occasion. For example, in Season 5’s “Amortycan Grickfitti,” Rick (also Roiland) and Jerry (Chris Parnell) find a demonic puzzle box which summons Cenobite-esque monsters to join them at a karaoke club. The creatures love suffering, which makes them want to witness Jerry’s onstage embarrassment.
The “Hellraiser” influence in “The Great Yokai Battle of Akihabara” is much more subtle than the aforementioned Season 5 episode, but it’s there. In order to get to their destination, Rick and Morty must travel through a dimensional tunnel that’s eerily reminiscent of the demonic labyrinth in the “Hellraiser” franchise. So much so, Morty even describes it as “Hell” in the Halloween special. There aren’t any Cenobites in sight, but the tunnel is home to the yokai demons of Japanese folklore, who are equally as terrifying as Pinhead and his crew.