Today WarnerMedia revealed just about everything we’d been wanting to know about HBO Max; so much that it can’t be contained in one article. We’ll be posting multiple news stories in succession; this is the second of them.
And just so nobody panics, the above headline does not mean Rick & Morty and South Park are leaving Adult Swim and Comedy Central. In the latter case, that’s impossible — it’s owned by Viacom, not WB. What it means is that HBO Max now holds the exclusive streaming rights to most seasons of both.
The first three seasons of Rick & Morty will be available to stream on HBO Max (and nowhere else) when the service launches in May 2020. These seasons will still air on Adult Swim. “Rick and Morty exploded onto the scene in 2013 and quickly drew a legion of rabid followers from both critics and young fans,” says Kevin Reilly, chief content officer at HBO Max and president of TBS, TNT and truTV. “The jokes come fast and frenetically in a smart comedy concoction we are so happy to deliver on HBO Max.”
In the case of South Park, WB had to pay a whopping $500 million for exclusive streaming rights, winning a bidding war against other interested clients like Comcast, who likely wanted it for their Universal streaming service that’s struggling to get any attention (especially in the face of announcement bombs like this). The deal covers all extant 23 seasons of the show. And get this….the seasons to come will have their episodes available on HBO Max a mere 24 hours after they air on Comedy Central.
“South Park is unequivocally among the best—setting the satirical gold standard, with a consistent finger on the comedy pulse,” said that Kevin Reilly guy. “Audiences have connected with Stan, Kyle, Cartman, and Kenny – either alive or dead – for over 20 years, and we look forward to connecting these characters to new audiences on HBO Max.” Reilly hasn’t watched South Park in a while….the last “Kenny dies” scene was seasons ago.
But he sure owns South Park reruns. The current season isn’t over and it’d be just like Trey and Matt to comment on this. Tomorrow’s episode should be interesting.