- Rick and Morty co-creator is once again catching backlash for a skit from 2009 where he played a babby rapist
- The 2009 skit titled “Daryl” was uploaded to Channel 101 in 2009 for their monthly short-film competition
- The video was uploaded to BitChute in 2017 and in 2018 Harmon deleted his Twitter account following backlash from the video
“Rick and Morty” co-creator Dan Harmon is under fire once again for an old skit where he portrayed a therapist who was also a baby rapist. This is the second time the skit has caused outrage on social media. In 2018, Harmon deleted his Twitter account following backlash from the video.
The infamous video titled “Daryl” begins with Harmon acting like a man’s therapist. After sending the patient home, Harmon thanks him for being “such a good patient” and “taking all the sleeping pills” proscribed to him so he will sleep through his baby being raped. Harmon is seen sneaking through a window and pretending to rape a baby doll as he narrates with the above-mentioned dialogue. Just to be clear, there are no children in the skit. A baby doll plays the role of Harmon’s infant victim.
In the next scene, Harmon is seen talking to a therapist. After admitting he rapes babies, the therapist threatens to murder Harmon with a knife. The therapist’s baby—played by the baby doll—witnesses the attempted murder, at which point the therapist puts the knife down. Harmon’s therapist then goes to see another therapist who tells him his son will become a murderer since he witnessed the attempted murder. The therapist claims raping his baby is the only way to prevent him from growing up to become a murderer.
The therapist goes to Harmon to request he rapes his baby, to which Harmon says “it will be enjoyable” and agrees. In the next scene, Harmon is seen pretending to rape the doll while staring at the father. In the following scene, Harmon says the rape was his pleasure. “You know it’s funny. That’s the first time I was able to do what I love without feeling guilty,” Harmon says. Harmon goes on to say, “I just wish there was a way to know every baby that was going to be a murderer unless I raped it.” His therapist responds, “you know, there might be.” The two stare at each other as the short film ends.
Daryl was hosted on Channel 101, which hosts a monthly short-film competition for sketch comedy. The video can no longer be viewed on Channel 101 but in 2017 it was uploaded in full to the “art+research” BitChute channel where it has received over 325,000 views. Channel 101 parodies the behavior of studios making shows for TV. Participants shoot five-minute “pilot” films that are judged by audience votes. The top five shows are then “renewed” for another episode the following month. Channel 101 has a listing for “Daryl – Episode 2” but it cannot be viewed online. The video’s description reads, “The shocking second episode of Daryl can not be viewed online, but know that someone may or may not have raped a cat.”
Harmon created Daryl in 2009 as a parody of Showtime’s “Dexter.” At the same time, Harmon’s show “Community” debuted on NBC. According to TheWrap, the video resurfaced as part of a “coordinated online campaign against left-leaning figures on Twitter.” A week prior, Mike Cernovich helped lead an attack against James Gunn by flagging old Twitter jokes about pedophilia and rape. Gunn lost his job as director of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” sequel due to the online campaign. Last year it was announced that Gunn was being brought back for the third Guardians of the Galaxy. Gunn is also the director of the upcoming sequel to “Suicide Squad.”
In 2018, Harmon apologized for the Daryl skit, saying it was “distasteful.” Harmon’s 2018 apology read, “In 2009, I made a ‘pilot’ which strove to parody the series ‘Dexter’ and only succeeded in offending. I quickly realized the content was way too distasteful and took the video down immediately. Nobody should ever have to see what you saw and for that, I sincerely apologize.” His apology came just a day after he deleted his Twitter account due to the backlash he faced from the resurfacing of the Daryl skit.
By that point Rick and Morty were loved by millions, which forced the show’s network, Adult Swim, to release a statement regarding Daryl. “At Adult Swim, we seek out and encourage creative freedom and look to push the envelope in many ways, particularly around comedy. The offensive content of Dan’s 2009 video that recently surfaced demonstrates poor judgement and does not reflect the type of content we seek out. Dan recognized his mistake at the time and has apologized. He understands there is no place for this type of content here at Adult Swim.”
More than two years later, Rick and Morty remain on the air and Adult Swim has yet to distance itself from Harmon. However, this resurfacing of Harmon’s Daryl video is playing out at a time where zero-tolerance towards pedophilia is dominating social media platforms. Fueling this zero-tolerance movement is the #SaveTheChildren, #SaveOurChildren hashtags. The “Save the Children” movement initially was intended to raise money for the Save the Children charity but recently appears to have been hijacked by QAnon. The hashtags are quickly becoming dumping grounds for the QAnon conspiracy that claims the world is run by an elitist child trafficking baby-eating cabal made up of prominent Hollywood actors and politicians.
Followers of QAnon use real events, such as the arrest of Jeffrey Epstein or Harmon’s video, as a foundation for wild conspiracies that seem to pick actors and politicians at random then accused them of being pedophiles. These accusations are typically backed by nothing more than a meme or a screenshot of a social media post. Even though the QAnon movement is riddled with misinformation, they have still been known to generate an impressively loud voice on social media. In March, Oprah Winfrey addressed false accusations on Twitter made by QAnon that she had been arrested and her property had been seized.
Through #SavetheChildren, there is a growing call to cancel Rick and Morty. After Season 3, Adult Swim signed Rick and Morty for 70 more episodes. The long-term deal was announced in May 2018. “Adult Swim has made a long-term overall deal with the creators that will include 70 new episodes of the critically acclaimed series,” Adult Swim said in a statement to Heavy at the time of the announcement. With only ten episodes in season four, Adult Swim is still waiting for the other 60 episodes that will likely be delivered in six seasons consisting of ten episodes apiece. Adult Swim has yet to comment on the latest round of backlash facing Harmon.