Rick and Morty

Whether you love the show or not, the big Rick & Morty renewal is a crazy and unrealistic order.

Adult Swim has renewed its animated hit series for a whopping 70 episodes. This order didn’t come with a specific time frame, or any details on the content. The general idea of committing to Rick & Morty makes a lot of sense. Especially now that the order will put the series into syndication status. No one can deny that the show is a cultural phenomenon with a passionate fanbase. The problem is ordering all of the episodes at once.

Setting up Rick & Morty for roughly seven more seasons all at once is too tall an order. This announcement almost feels like a joke on Adult Swim’s part. Perhaps they’re overcompensating for how long it took to renew the series. Some truly incredible shows only get seven seasons total. Giving Rick & Morty the green light for so long is an impractical move.

So many shows lose steam after years on air. A big example of this is another animated comedy – The Simpsons. The Simpsons is a true classic, and many consider it one of the greatest television shows ever. That said, the show has definitely dropped off in quality over the years. It’s been so long since The Simpsons has held the cultural relevance of its heyday. Do fans of Rick & Morty really want to risk a similar decline into irrelevance for this cartoon?

Rick and Morty

Don’t forget the problems the crew faced getting season three done. Harmon has been very open about the arguments and conflicts that delayed the season’s development. It took a long time for the third season to be ready, and it’s because of problems that could easily come up again. If producing any television show was an easy task, maybe ordering so many episodes at once would make sense. But as producing TV can be unpredictable and messy – especially this show – ordering so much of the show at once seems foolish.

Do we even know if Rick & Morty will still hold weight in the future? Fans of Harmon’s other hit series, Community, campaigned for “six seasons and a movie.” However, you might be hard-pressed to find a lot of people who watched that sixth season. Obviously, it’s not fair to blame that solely on Dan Harmon. Some of that deals with problems outside of Harmon’s control, like the series moving from NBC to Yahoo Screen. But it highlights a simple rule of the universe – you can’t predict the future. Who knows what kind of problems could plague Rick & Morty the next 7+ years.

Rick and Morty
Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland, the creators of RICK & MORTY

So what happens if this insane order of episodes doens’t come to pass? What if there is a crazy drop-off in quality? That might bring out problems with the show’s worst quality… its overzealous fans. It wasn’t long ago fans were rioting over not getting a small packet of fast food dipping sauce. There has also be problems with toxicity in the fanbase, which the creators have addressed. Production problems, or any form of uncertainty regarding the show, could easily incite more of this insanity. Yes, not all fans of Rick & Morty aren’t that bad, or would be the kind of people to riot. But there are enough bad eggs that could sully the series more than the Szechuan sauce riots.

This article isn’t meant as an insult to Rick & Morty. The show has definitely had some hilarious episodes throughout its three seasons. However, ordering so much at once is a recipe for disaster. Maybe renew the show for shorter periods, taking it a few years at a time. Don’t let another show run itself into obscurity.

Jon Barr is a comedian and TV Phanatic. Yeah, he meant to spell it that way. It's like the Philly Phanatic, like from Philadelphia, because he's from - you get it. He loves good TV & mocking bad TV. You can find him all over the web.

3 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t think it is clickbait, but I disagree with the thesis. For example Simpsons is generally believed to have lost quality at about episode 180 (The Principal and the Pauper) That’s a lot more than what would be the 100th episode of Rick & Morty (30 existing + 70 in the contract)
    Another concern is the loss of quality by rushing things–but there is no time frame in the contract, in fact I suspect the length of the contract may be more to secure marketing and syndication than to start plopping them out faster.
    Another reason to have a big order is to avoid the problem where there is no contract and you lose writing talent during every periodic hiatus.
    And of course if quality suffers you stop watching it.

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