April fools once again came around this year. No spectacular prank or public spectacle appeared to make its way into my news feed that day. To me, it was just another unproductive day of the Easter holidays, or so I thought (cue Rick and Morty opening sequence).
It turns out throughout the whole day, despite my constant focus on the internet as usual, I had been completely ignorant to the utterly impossible. To put this into some context, imagine Nathan Fillion went on live TV to announce Firefly season 2, or imagine that Gabe Newell (hailed creator of Valve and Steam) announced that Half-Life 3 is be made instantly available. These events have a miniscule probability of occurring. Arguably what happened April fool’s day 2017 was even more unlikely… Rick and Morty season 3 episode 1 was released… and somehow, I was oblivious.
Dan Harmon and his cronies delivered the biggest anti-April fools days’ prank that it was possible to pull off. They announced one of the most anticipated shows of the last few years on the day when we least expected it. We should have known better, this is Rick and Morty after all. Actually, we really should have known better. They actually told us it would be released at this time of year in an after note of the season 2 finale. We were reintroduced to a fan favourite (Mr Poopy Butthole) who says we can expect the next season “in about a year and a half”. This was just played off as teasing the audience, due to the nonchalant nature of the announcement within the clip. However somehow it took us all by surprise.
This constant teasing has been intrinsically tied to season 3’s release, with vague release rumours and Harmon’s own twitter teasing the fans. It got to the point where memes have been created about the release of season 3, over-exaggerating the length of time it is taking to release it, in a similar way to Half-Life 3 memes.
But did I manage to watch it in the end? Thankfully yes. I was rudely awoken at 3am by a constant barrage of messages emanating from my phone. My friend declared that season 3 episode 1 was released yesterday, of course my instant reaction was disbelief. But once I realised this was no prank I scrawled the internet in search of the improbability. I ended up watching a twitch loop of the episode. It looked like versions of the episode were beginning to be shut down, so I was in luck. I managed to survive Harmon’s trickery this year.
However, could Harmon pull of yet another stunt like this? He has proved his ability in recent years to be the king of the meta in his works (see community). And the recent proposal from Rick at the end of the episode suggesting he wants 9 seasons and simply wants to locate McDonalds Szechuan sauce has suggested another stunt has already begun with McDonalds promising to bring the sauce back all due to Harmon’s meddling.