Best Animated Series: South Park or Rick and Morty?
Rotten Tomatoes posed that question today on Facebook and it was a landslide for South Park. And when I say landslide, I mean it wasn't even close. If I had to translate comments into votes, the breakdown would be as such:
90 for South Park
5 for Rick and Morty
1 for the Simpsons
1 for Disenchantment
1 for BoJack Horseman
1 for Final Space
I love Rick and Morty, but in May of 2020 I warned Adult Swim that I was starting to see more and more Rick and Morty backlash. I said that the producers of Rick and Morty needed to "tighten up their production schedule." Since then, Rick and Morty have come out with 4 episodes and there's no release date for season 5. Co-creator Justin Roiland even proposed a "once a month" format for releasing new Rick and Mortys.
Until the pandemic, South Park was prolific, releasing new episodes every year and didn't drop their episodes per year production schedule below a dozen until their SEVENTEENTH season. Is South Park as good now as it was in season 1? Of course not.
When is the first time I felt the South Park "lost it." That's easy, at the beginning of season 18 when Randy was Lorde (the singer.) Once Isaac Hayes died, I didn't like the focus on some of the other adult characters, especially Randy. "The Cissy" was South Park's 250th episode. Next month, South Park will debut its 24th season and 309th episode.
Rick and Morty debuted over 7 years ago and has only managed 41 episodes. Justin Roiland's Solar Opposites comes out with season 2 next month for Hulu. So my question is, is it the creator's faults or is it Adult Swim's fault for the limited release schedule? Obviously some one is at fault, they're just not saying.
Again, what successful cartoon series has had LESS than 41 episodes in 7 years? The aforementioned BoJack Horseman had 77 episodes in 6 years and has taken home a wheel barrel full of awards. The Simpsons passed their 41st episode in 1992 in its third year on the air!
In 1992, I owned this shirt. In college.
It appears that Netflix's Disenchantment, that looks even MORE expensive to make than Rick and Morty, may conclude their series after 40 episodes in 5 years in 2022.
If I had to recklessly speculate, I would tend to blame Adult Swim. They are awesome when it comes to giving new shows a chance. They suck when it comes to nurturing shows once they have proven themselves.
Editor's Note: What is my beef with Adult Swim? Later this year, Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell is going to get a one hour send off. YPFISGTH is a live action series that will have only produced 42 12-minute episodes in 8 years when the finale airs. There seems to be an appearance that shows should be grateful to Adult Swim for letting them air.
It is the double edged sword. You want more of your favorite Adult Swim content, but Adult Swim doesn't have a lot of competition to air experimental broadcasting.