The Rick and Morty Season 2 finale — “The Wedding Squanchers” — saw Rick turn himself in to face life in Galactic Federation prison, and the Smith family returned home to find that the same Federation had taken control of Earth. The surprise airing of the Season 3 premiere — “The Rickshank Redemption” — on April 1 undid just about all of that, ended Beth and Jerry’s marriage, and destroyed Rick C-137’s body. But none of that mattered when Rick and Morty continued with “Rickmancing the Stone” in a Mad Max wasteland. Utter madness at a breakneck pace? Sounds like Rick and Morty is finally back.
Editor’s Note: This article is updated as new information about Rick and Morty Season 3 is released.
Now, Rick and Morty’s third season is full steam ahead as episodes air every Sunday on Adult Swim at 11:30 p.m. Eastern.
Here’s everything else we know about Season 3:
[8/4/2017 Update] Morty’s Dog Snuffles/Snowball Won’t Be Back in Season 3, But Justin Roiland Wants to Revisit the Character in the Future
When asked about parts of the show the creators might want to return to, Roiland said:
“I mean we have a ton of seeds that we’ve planted that we could come back to. There’s a bunch that I would do something with, but the one that I would really love to think about more is Snowball. I feel like that could potentially be really cool.”
Roiland makes it clear that the sentient dog won’t return anytime soon, but it’s a character he wants to revisit down the line.
[7/31/2017 Update] “Pickle Rick” Story Confirmed for Episode 3
Rumors had surfaced on episode lists on Wikipedia and similar sites beforehand, but the “on the next Rick and Morty” preview that followed “Rickmancing the Stone” confirmed that Episode 3 would feature the infamous Pickle Rick.
When Morty starts asking too many questions, Rick cuts him off: “Stop digging for hidden layers and just be impressed.”
Harmon and Roiland might as well have been speaking directly to and trolling Rick and Morty’s rabid fanbase.
[7/30/2017 Update] Rick, Morty, and Summer Fight Mad Max Sand Raiders and Feelings About Divorce in “Rickmancing the Stone”
The second episode of Season 3, “Rickmancing the Stone” aired at 11:30 p.m. Eastern and told a story set in a Mad Max-styled post-apocalyptic wasteland. Summer becomes the focus in a story mostly about how poorly both she and Morty deal with their parents’ impending divorce.
[7/24/2017 Update] Mr. Goldenfold Outs Himself as a Poop-Eater in the “Pickle Rick” Episode
During a Season 3 promo in which Morty is sporting the same dapper sweater seen in the “Pickle Rick” promo, his Math teacher Mr. Goldenfold greets the Smith family in a therapist’s waiting room. Dr. Wong specializes in Family Therapy and “Coprophagia Therapy,” which is a treatment for compulsive poop-eaters.
[7/23/2017 Update] Episode 2, “Rickmancing the Stone” Confirmed as the Mad Max Episode
The Season 3 trailer teased a Mad Max-esque episode, but a behind-the-scenes trailer released July 22 confirmed that “Rickmancing the Stone” would be the second episode of the season. It also detailed the BDSM-fueled costume designs of its many characters.
[7/20/2017 Update] A Third “Interdimensional Cable” Episode Won’t Happen in Season 3
Harmon and Roiland confirmed in an interview with Time on July 19 that there would not be an “Interdimensional Cable” episode in the new season, but they did tease “a different take on a somewhat anthological episode.”
[7/18/2017 Update] Harmon and Roiland Announce Season 3 Guest Stars
In an interview with IndieWire, Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland rattled off a list of the Season 3 guest stars. It included the return of Keith David as the President of the United States, along with the following as new characters: Christian Slater, Susan Sarandon, Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Peter Serafinowicz, Danny Trejo, and Thomas Middleditch.
[6/30/2017 Update] Episode 2, “Rickmancing the Stone,” Announced for July 30
During the June 29 live stream by Harmon and Roiland, the co-creators announced that Season 3 would continue on July 30. Episode 2, “Rickmancing the Stone,” was scheduled for airing Sunday, July 30 at 11:30 p.m. Eastern on Adult Swim.
[6/30/2017 Update] Showrunners Debut a Season 3 Trailer During a Live Stream Event
A Rick and Morty marathon aired on Adult Swim on June 29, and at its conclusion, showrunners Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon hosted a live stream event in Los Angeles.
In addition to chatting, creating an episode live, and answering fan questions, they also dropped a full trailer for Season 3 that teased some bonding between Rick and Jerry at an amusement park, a Mad Max-style episode, a goofy Avengers rip-off, and even more footage of the Pickle Rick survivalist episode.
[6/30/2017 Update] Instead of 14, Season 3 Will Have Only 10 Episodes
During the live stream event held in Los Angeles on June 29, Harmon and Roiland confirmed that Season 3 will actually have 10 episodes.
[6/30/2017 Update] Actually, Mulan Szechuan McNuggett Sauce Won’t Be a Big Deal At All
During the special Rick and Morty live stream on June 29, Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland clarified something about Rick’s supposed obsession over the McDonald’s Mulan promotional sauce: “It was a joke.” They were making fun of Roiland’s real-life obsession with consumerism and sauces. The so-called “series arc” has been reduced to a one-time joke.
[6/30/2017 Update] Mr. Meeseeks Definitely Won’t Return in Season 3
Confirmed in an interview with Rick and Morty writer Ryan Ridley on the Y Combinator podcast, Mr. Meeseeks will not be back in Season 3 despite previous promises. This was further confirmed by Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland during the June 29 live stream event. Roiland did say that bringing the Meeseeks Box back was a possibility “eventually,” but it won’t happen in the foreseeable future.
Dan Harmon himself said late in 2015 at a Comic Con appearance: “I’m going to make that a personal promise to myself. I’m going to force Mr. Meeseeks into Season 3.” Season 2 avoided call-backs to avoid making Rick and Morty an “inside-joke show,” which is something Harmon has said he wants to change with Season 3. But despite his previous promises, it looks like the Meeseeks won’t be back anytime soon.
[6/8/2017 Update] Writer Ryan Ridley Compares Pickle Rick Storyline to 127 Hours
In an interview with the Y Combinator podcast, Rick and Morty writer Ryan Ridley compared the upcoming Pickle Rick storyline to 127 Hours, calling it the “the Rick and Morty version of … the survivalist sub-genre.”
[4/5/2017 Update] Rick Will Become a Pickle
We already knew — based on a roughly sketched clip that debuted at San Diego Comic-Con 2016 — that Rick would somehow become a Pickle. But a Season 3 promo, featured above, shows Pickle Rick reveal himself to Morty in the garage, teasing the new season’s release this summer. “Big reveal!”
[4/5/2017 Update] Tammy Is Alive and Has an Enslaved Cyborg Birdperson
In “The Rickshank Redemption” post-credits scene, we saw that not only was the infamous Tammy still alive, but she had a team of Gromflomite scientists transform Birdperson’s dead body into an avian cyborg calling itself the aptly named “Phoenixperson.”
It’s unknown if or when the two of them might return to the show.
[4/5/2017 Update] Rick Says His New Character Arc Is All About McDonald’s Mulan Szechuan Teriyaki Sauce
In the final moments of the Season 3 premiere, Rick straight-up tells Morty (and viewers), “I want that Mulan McNugget Sauce, Morty! That’s my series arc, Morty!” The joke that started as Rick and Morty at its most random became a viral phenomenon in the days following the premiere.
Dan Harmon later confirmed that the bit was just a random joke meant to troll co-creator Justin Roiland, so the sauce likely won’t factor into the show further.
[4/1/2017 Update] Season 3 Premiere Airs April 1, Promising New Episodes This Summer
In a surprising and nearly unbelievable move, Adult Swim dropped the Season 3 premiere on April Fool’s Day as some sort of looping live stream. Nathan Fillion guest-starred as a Gromflomite prison guard, Rick broke out of prison and destroyed both the Galactic Federation and the Council of Ricks in one fell swoop.
Mr. Poopybutthole Accurately Predicted the Season 3 Premiere Way Back in October 2015
Mr. Poopybutthole starred in a YouTube video that released only two days after the Season 2 finale aired. After a scuffle with a pizza delivery man, he writhes on the floor a bit and breaks the fourth wall enough to tell the viewer that they can “tune into Rick and Morty Season 3 — in like — a year and a half … or longer!” That put the expected release date on April 6, 2017 … or longer. And, as we all know, the first episode of Season 3 aired on April 1, 2017, which basically makes Mr. Poopybutthole something of an oracle.
Note: The GalacticFederation.com viral site includes a “live” video feed of Mr. P’s current whereabouts, and he’s in that same living room petting his cat. You can also explore his house yourself in the Rickstaverse.
Season 3 Was Written by a More Diverse Writers’ Room
Co-creator Dan Harmon told Den of Geek the following:
“There was a craving for a gender balance in the writers’ room that we had never had, but I’m also very proud of the fact that we didn’t compromise ourselves following that craving. … We’ve gone from a bunch of dudes shooting Nerf guns at each other and asking each other questions about women that we don’t know the answers to … I think it’s like a 50/50 balance now, like in the early days of Community, which is really great. Because I think the important thing about gender in the writers’ room is not representation, it’s balance.”
Among a number of other additions is Jessica Gao, who penned Episode 3 of the upcoming season.
Season 3, Episode 2 Is Titled “Rickmancing the Stone”
Spencer Grammer, the voice of Morty’s sister Summer, shared the above script for Season 3’s second episode, “Rickmancing The Stone.” Typical of the show, the name is a clear riff on some other story title or phrase. In this case, it’s a riff on Romancing the Stone, a 1984 adventure film that feels like an Indiana Jones rip-off.
Keep in mind that more often than not, the naming conventions for episodes are only loosely associated with the actual plot. Beyond including the sci-fi trope of falsely implanted memories, the episode “Total Rickall” has very little to do with any version of Total Recall, Schwarzenegger or otherwise.
“Rickmancing the Stone” was supposed to feature a “giant piano” in some fashion, based on a sliver of text from the script. A giant piano was later featured in the Season 3 trailer but never showed up in the Mad Max second episode in Season 3.
Ryan Ridley & Dan Guterman Co-Wrote Episode 7 of Season 3
Ryan Ridley served as producer on the show and a voice actor for a slew of minor characters, including the upcoming “Alien 32,” but he also had a hand in writing great episodes like “Meeseeks and Destroy” and “Look Who’s Purging Now.” Dan Guterman, on the other hand, has written for The Onion, The Colbert Report, and Community, in addition to several previous Rick and Morty episodes. This pair previously co-wrote on “Interdimensional Cable 2: Tempting Fate,” so they are back at it again for another “Great Collaboration” in Season 3.
Pickled Rick Will Fight Rats
No, he’s not just pickled from all the booze. A very rough Season 3 Exclusive, that debuted at San Diego Comic-Con 2016, shows a scene in which Rick is literally a pickle and has to use his wits and limbs from fallen bugs and other garbage to defend himself from an onslaught of wild rats. The ensuing violence and chaos is about on par with a sewer-based Purge, and it involves a horrific machine that uses rat brains to biologically enhance Rick’s pickle.
Rick and Morty Destroy a Butthole-Looking Death Star
In an exclusive reveal on Adult Swim’s in-house live stream show, Development Meeting, the very rough above clip shows Morty striking out yet again with his long-time crush, Jessica, before going on an adventure with Grandpa Rick to retrieve a “plasma shard” owned by a princess in the “Abadango Cluster.” In a harrowing space attack, the pair destroys the power core to a vast alien ship and escape the ensuing explosion in a very obvious riff on the original Star Wars, complete with the award ceremony. What you never got at the end of A New Hope was any sort of complete mental breakdown like that which both Rick and Morty have at the end.
This article was originally published on March 14, 2017. It was last updated August 4, 2017 (4:45 p.m. Eastern).
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