The Rick and Morty Season 5 trailer was released in March 2021 with a tweet that read: “Now you can start asking us about Season 6.” Especially since Season 5 concluded in September 2021, we’ve all got to start looking forward to the next season.
Time Warner Broadcasting and Adult Swim ordered 70 more Rick and Morty episodes in May 2018. All 10 episodes of Season 4 are included in that order, along with the 10 episodes from Season 5. Starting with Season 6, we’re looking at at least 50 more episodes in the series. It seems safe to assume that it’ll be 10-episode seasons for the foreseeable future, so this current order could encompass everything through Season 10.
But when will the new season be released? And what else do we know about it?
When is the Rick and Morty Season 6 release date?
There’s every reason to believe that the 70-episode order means new Rick and Morty seasons will be released more regularly than they have been previously. All of that began with Season 4, so if we look at the pace of production since, that might be a clue as to when Season 5 might begin.
The first half of Season 4 aired from November to December of 2019. Then, the second half aired in May 2020. It was just over a full year until Season 5 began airing again throughout summer 2021. Then it was on a month-long hiatus before the two-part Season 5 finale in September 2021. More plainly, there was about a year break between the Season 4 finale and the Season 5 premiere, so can we expect the same for Season 6? Probably.
Therefore, Season 6 will likely begin airing in fall 2022 in September, October, or November. If anything, it’ll likely begin even sooner, but that largely depends on how Adult Swim decides to roll it out. Season 5 ran almost continuously before taking a break ahead of the two-part season finale, whereas Season 4 was split neatly in two with almost six months between.
Series co-creator Dan Harmon said during July 2020’s Adult Swim Con that the writing team was already finished with Season 5 and actively working on Season 6. He told Entertainment Weekly something similar a year previously, in July 2019: “We’re literally writing Season 5 while finishing Season 4.” The new standard is to produce episodes on a rolling basis, so Rick and Morty may wind up resembling more traditional TV shows that premiere on a predictable annual schedule.
We also know that the writers’ room wrapped writing on Season 7 as of August 2021, per a tweet from Cody Ziglar. “We all stared into the abyss & saw the face of God & It was a Gundam,” he wrote. “God is a Gundam & does the Naruto run. Unprecedented.” Based on these silly notes it’s possible that this was a bit of a troll. Did they really wrap Season 7?
Is there a Rick and Morty Season 6 trailer?
No, and we shouldn’t expect one for a very long time.
In May 2019, Adult Swim announced a fall 2019 release window for Season 4 with a direct address from Morty and Rick. Then the official trailer wasn’t released until October 2019. The trailer for the back half of Season 4 was released on April 1, 2020, just one month before episodes resumed.
The Season 5 trailer was released on March 30, 2021, ahead of a June 20 premiere, and we also have to consider the “First Look” animatic released in July 2020. It may seem shocking to consider, but it’s at least possible we’ll see an early animatic from Season 6 before the end of 2021. Adult Swim Festival 2020 was held in November of that year, so it’s possible we’ll see a repeat of that event in November 2021. If so, that would be the perfect time for the network to release an early animatic from Season 6 ahead of a launch in the middle of 2022.
A complete trailer’s release date will depend on when the new season launched, but historically, they’re usually released between one and three months before the season premiere. That probably means a Season 6 trailer on or around April 1, 2022. (April 1 has, on some level, become something of a Rick and Morty holiday for the network, so it’s possible.) Or, at the very least, it’ll be released at some point in the first half of 2022.
How far along is Rick and Morty Season 6 production?
A fall 2020 production update offered a good indication that Season 6 is progressing along smoothly.
“I often get confused right now between Season 5 and Season 6,” Dan Harmon said during PaleyFest NY in October 2020. “Immediately after this panel, I’ll be reviewing an animatic for a late Season 5 episode. Yet, we are very late in the season … writing Season 6, looking at finales for both seasons, and then also refining the finale of one and the premiere of another.”
Things are a bit confusing here, mainly because Harmon and fellow co-creator and showrunner Justin Roiland are involved at every stage of the process. If they were reviewing an animatic, then that late Season 5 episode hadn’t even entered the animation process yet, which can take several months.
At the same time, the writing team was actively scripting the Season 6 finale while refining the Season 6 premiere. More than six months later, series writer Alex Rubens wrote in a February 2021 tweet that the team had started writing Season 7. And an August 2021 tweet from Cody Ziglar revealed that writing was done on Season 7. Writing an entire season therefore seemingly takes about six months.
It really depends on how complex the animation is for Season 6 at large — and how far along they are in that process.
Who are the Rick and Morty Season 6 writers?
In May 2020, Dan Harmon noted in an Instagram post that Community alum Alex Rubens had joined the Rick and Morty writing team for Season 6. And then Rubens took the chance in February 2021 to spotlight his fellow writers over Twitter.
Therefore, we’ve already got a pretty comprehensive look at the Season 6 writers’ room:
- Alex Rubens
- Heather Campbell
- Grace Freud
- Albro Lundy IV
- Nick Rutherford
- Rob Schrab
- James Siciliano
- Alex Song-Xia
- Cody Ziglar
What is the Rick and Morty Season 6 story?
Spoilers follow for Rick and Morty Season 5.
Particularly the last two episodes in Season 5 established some hugely significant plot developments that could forever change the show moving forward, but let’s back up to reflect on some important things from earlier in the season.
The Beth Variant known as “Space Beth” from the Season 4 finale still exists somewhere out there in the show’s main timeline, but she didn’t appear in Season 5 at all. Planetina, Morty’s girlfriend with powers akin to Captain Planet’s, is also still around following an early Season 5 episode that explores their romance. We might see both of these characters again, along with Naruto, the giant incest baby made from Morty and Summer’s DNA. Birdperson has also fully returned from the dead, so expect him to pop up every now and then.
Most importantly, however, in the Season 5 finale, Evil Morty sacrificed the Citadel and most of the Mortys and Ricks aboard to shoot himself out of the Central Finite Curve and into the wider multiverse. We learned in this episode that Rick C-137 (the main Rick of the series) helped design the Citadel and built a wall around a section of the multiverse that separated all realities where Rick was the smartest man from the rest. Evil Morty essentially broke free.
The destruction of the Citadel also means that Rick’s supply of portal fluid could be gone. At the very end of the Season 5 finale, he tosses an empty portal gun to the ground while they fly away aboard a section of the Citadel. Portal tech might not work at all anymore. It’s also possible that the Central Finite Curve itself has been destroyed. Early Season 6 will have to reckon with some of these questions rather quickly.
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