Rick and Morty Season 5 kicked off with a pleasant surprise: one episode free to everyone! Adult Swim has put the premiere episode, "Mort Dinner Rick Andre" on YouTube where anyone with an internet connection can watch it at no cost. This is excellent news for a show that's typically hard to find without a cable subscription.
You can watch Rick and Morty Season 5, Episode 1 on the Adult Swim YouTube channel here for free. The network dropped the episode as a surprise, not warning fans that they could get access to this one without any subscriptions. It has been generally well-reviewed so far, with fans and critics looking forward to the rest of Season 5 more than ever. Adult Swim plans to air the entire season consecutively on Sunday nights at 11 p.m. ET, with no midseason break like last year.
For those wondering, there are a few ways to catch the rest of the season going forward. Of course, a cable subscription will allow you to watch it or record on Adult Swim, and it will also allow you to access AdultSwim.com to stream the episode live online. You can even watch the new episodes on AdultSwim.com on Monday mornings — but again, only with a valid cable log-in.
For cord-cutters, you'll need a skinny TV bundle like Hulu + Live TV to stream the new episodes — available here with a free trial for new users. You will not be able to watch the episodes after they air, and you won't get access with a regular Hulu account or on HBO Max.
That leaves the option of purchasing the season on a digital store for those that can't stay up late on Sundays to watch it live. If you buy the season in advance on a service like Amazon Prime Video, you will be able to watch the new episodes at your leisure within hours after they air on TV. This even comes with the added bonus of uncensored dialogue.
This unexpectedly free episode mirrors similar stunts Rick and Morty and Adult Swim have become known for in the past. The best example was the Season 3 premiere, when Adult Swim aired the never-before-seen episode on repeat for several hours on April Fool's Day, all without warning. It was several weeks before the season premiered for real.