Rick and Morty has no Season 3 release date yet, but Adult Swim released a new intro to the popular sci-fi comedy cartoon on their YouTube channel. Fans of Rick and Morty will recognize the opening’s characters and sequence of events with one important twist–everything looks like it’s part of a retro video game, instead of the cleanly animated style fans are used to.
The video is called “Rick and Morty 8-Bit Intro” and was created by digital artists Paul Robertson and Ivan Dixon. Robertson has been involved for years in translating the GIF format and 8-bit aesthetic from Web 1.0 to 2.0 before lending his expertise to this animated project. His team spent a month and a half using digital software to build sprites, the moveable images you see in the video and then animating them in the program Autodesk Animator.
Rick and Morty art exhibit opening tomorrow in LA. Gonna get riggity REKT SONNN pic.twitter.com/LMn9cAiwOm
— BARELY ALIVE (@BarelyAliveUS) January 12, 2017
Robertson told “The Creator’s Project” how he felt about the opportunity to make the “Rick and Morty 8-Bit Intro” and a little bit about the creative process behind the art.
“Rick and Morty is awesome! It’s one of my favorite shows. We just tried to cram in as many of our favorite characters and references as possible while keeping the timing of the original the same.”
In the comment section of Adult Swim’s YouTube and Facebook pages, some fans pointed out that the art is definitely not 8-Bit, but at least 16 or even 32 bit. Yet the retro-gaming feel is undeniable. This style of art, called pixel art, has long since been made obsolete by improved graphics rendering capabilities. Just last month, artists working on Rogue One debuted their digital art technique that made it possible to bring 19-year-old Carrie Fisher and long-dead Peter Cushing back to the screen to reprise their roles in the original Star Wars film. It goes without saying that we’ve moved beyond 2D graphics.
i love 8 bit Rick so much pic.twitter.com/NNcXnvAewQ
— All Rick and Morty (@AllRickAndMorty) January 13, 2017
Yet pixel art remains popular for its nostalgic value. Improved pixel art revolutionized gaming whenever advances in graphics capabilities were made, so anyone who grew up playing video games before modern engines were available has an appreciation for the art style. It is also considered the most crisp art you can produce on a screen.
The retro feel extends to the sound production in the “Rick and Morty 8-Bit Intro”, too. Brent Busby, a sound designer for Adult Swim, created a chiptunes score of the Rick and Morty theme song to match the new 8-Bit intro.
Meanwhile, fans wait impatiently for the Season 3 release date to be announced. The best information sources point to a March release, but the announcement needs to come soon for that to happen and for the Rick and Morty Season 3 production schedule to avoid being delayed any more than it already has. Production released a teaser trailer, but the animation is rough and unfinished. It was not even colored yet at the time of the release.
— GiGi???? (@icecry) January 7, 2017
What’s holding the Rick and Morty Season 3 release date back? We know that the scripts were finished by August, and episodes should have been screened by October. This was the original schedule when the plan was for Rick and Morty Season 3 to come out at the end of 2016. When Adult Swim failed to release even a finished trailer by late last year, fans feared that Mr. Poopybutthole’s prediction of a long wait before the Season 3 premiere was destined to come true.
The delay has caused disappointment and speculation as Rick and Morty fans wait for the return of one of the most popular television shows currently on air. Before Season 3 began production, showrunners increased the female presence on the writing team. Rick and Morty co-creator Dan Harmon insisted that the integrity of the show was not compromised by the “craving for a gender balance.” It remains to be seen whether that influence will–or has–affected the popular show.
[Featured Image by Wikipedia Fair Use]