Rick and Morty fans endured an excruciatingly long wait for Season 4 after Season 3 ended in October 2017, but what does the future of Rick and Morty look like with the 60 more episodes that have been ordered for Season 5 and beyond?
The original delay between Seasons 3 and 4 was mainly due to contract negotiations with Turner Broadcasting, but when the network ordered 70 more episodes in May 2018, that established a future for Rick and Morty’s adventures.
“Rick and Morty forever!” Rick Sanchez shouted in the Season 3 premiere. While Rick and Morty can’t possibly go on forever, at least we’ll definitely have Rick and Morty for a long time to come.
We know for sure that Rick and Morty Season 4 will last 10 episodes, but what do we really know about Season 5 and beyond? As we proceed through Season 4, come back here to get all of the most important Season 5 news, including relevant rumors and speculation about the show.
How will Rick and Morty Season 4 set up Season 5?
In a video interview published by Variety with the show’s creators and voice actors, Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland dropped a big hint that the Season 4 finale could really shake things up for the show.
“The finale of Season 4 is really good,” he said. “We get canonical. We get serialized.”
Rick and Morty often assumes a more procedural approach to its episodes with what we might as well call an “adventure of the week” format. But the Season 4 finale will grapple with some kind of event that shakes up the show’s canon and moves a serialized plot development along. It may have already been teased in Season 4.
“We have a tag in Season 4 that’s going to tee some shit up in Season 5,” Roiland also said in the same interview.
A “tag” refers to the post-credits scene that appears after the credits roll in every single episode of Rick and Morty. The Season 4, Episode 3 tag featured Mr. Poopybutthole hanging out on the roof with Rick and Morty talking about a “big storm” was coming that Rick thought might be a “twister.” One writer for TweakTown wonders if this is a big clue that a twist is coming soon on the show — or maybe it’s a literal storm that will impact Season 5 in some way?
How long will the wait for Rick and Morty Season 5 be?
Most Rick and Morty fans have learned to brace for long waits between seasons. Roughly 18 months or longer have passed between the end of a season and the start of a new one. That seemingly won’t be the case anymore starting at Season 4, however.
Since Adult Swim ordered the full 70 episodes, there’s no doubt about whether more Rick and Morty is coming. Production will theoretically never stop until all 70 episodes are created, whereas before the production team would stop working until Adult Swim ordered more episodes.
In a July 2019 interview with Entertainment Weekly, Dan Harmon confirmed as much, saying, “I think it’s safe to say without fear of being wrong that the gap between Seasons 3 and 4 will be the longest and last time that it’s ever so long that it’s ridiculous.” Roiland also said that they’re “rolling right into the next batch.”
Production on Season 5 is already well under way, and Erica Hayes tells Inverse that it can take nine months or longer to go from an episode’s ideation and writing to the finished product.
Former Rick and Morty writer Jeff Loveness shared an image to Twitter on September 20, 2019 confirming that he wrote several Season 4 episodes and the Season 5 premiere — and that it was his last day on the show.
That naturally leads us to…
What is the Rick and Morty Season 5 release date?
The closest thing we have to a precedent that we can use to predict the Season 5 release date are the start of Season 2 and the real start of Season 3.
Fans no doubt remember that Season 3 technically began on April 1 with a truly surprising airing of “The Rickshank Rickdemption.” Season 3 continued with “Rickmancing the Stone” on July 30, 2017. Almost exactly two years prior, the Season 2 premiere, “A Rickle in Time,” aired on July 26, 2015. Could Season 5 revert back to this peak summer debut and end in October?
In both previous cases, the show began airing in the last Sunday in July. One very hopeful guess would be a Rick and Morty Season 5 premiere date of July 26, 2020.
However, if the November premiere of Season 4 is the new norm, then we might have to wait until November 2020. That would really depend upon when Season 4 starts.
Either way, the Rick and Morty production schedule should normalize in a way that means the release dates will be more consistent, predictable, and on an annual schedule.
When will we get the first trailer for Rick and Morty Season 5
Well, we don’t even have a Season 4 trailer yet, so chill out. That said, Adult Swim did reveal our first look at S4 during San Diego Comic-Con, so they same thing could happen for Rick and Morty Season 5 at SDCC 2020. Of course, that’s assuming the show’s new norm is a November premiere …
How many episodes will be in Rick and Morty Season 5?
We have no way to know for sure how long Season 5 might be, but we can probably assume it’ll also be 10 episodes long.
In a a September 2017 interview with Entertainment Weekly, Dan Harmon admitted that the original plan was for Season 3 to be 14 episodes long, but creative struggles compelled them to make a “finale-ified” version of Season 3, Episode 10 instead to cap the season. Given the rounded number of 70 episodes Adult Swim ordered, and the confirmation that Season 4 is also 10 episodes long, we’re probably looking at an even six more seasons that are each 10 episodes long.
In that same EW interview, however, they offered a hint that future seasons could be longer than 10 episodes.
“We’re literally writing Season 5 while finishing Season 4 just to force ourselves to commit to a certain schedule,” Harmon said. “Not to get anyone’s hopes up, but it is structured into our deal that if we’re going strong and fast there are options to deliver more episodes at a time.”
Translation: If Rick and Morty production proceeds quickly and efficiently, they might make future seasons longer than 10 episodes. But there’s no guarantee that’ll happen.
What stories might happen in Rick and Morty Season 5?
Series co-creators Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon have said time and again that they really want to work with Kanye West on an episode. In theory, they might just give the music star full creative control over an entire episode. Why? Read more.
In late May 2019, Dan Harmon trolled fans lightly via Instagram by posting a large number of Post-It notes with bizarre Rick and Morty concepts, saying that they were all for Season 5. This is a good indication that he and the rest of the writing team have been working on Season 5 for quite some time now. These ideas sound wackier than ever before. Read more.
Rick and Morty Season 5 will definitely happen one day, probably in mid-to-late 2020.