Who would’ve thought that after years of multiverse-hopping, an appearance in a Wendy’s commercial could instill surprise in the protagonists of Adult Swim’s “Rick and Morty”?
Thanks to a recent partnership between Wendy’s and “Rick and Morty,” fans of the sci-fi cartoon can now treat themselves to a hilarious, Adult Swim-created custom animated branded content clip (see above) starring mad scientist Rick Sanchez and his grandson, Morty Smith. The spot features typically irreverent “Rick and Morty” antics, while also spreading the message about Wendy’s new breakfast offerings.
What starts out as a mundane subway ride with his grandson quickly turns into the race of their lives: Rick notices that he and Morty are being followed by Wendy’s menacing-looking breakfast items—the Breakfast Baconator, the Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit and the Frosty-ccino. “They’ve been trying to make us do a commercial about it for months,” Rick murmurs to Morty, before warning him that the Chicken Biscuit is “a bruiser—do not mess with that guy.” (Rick is definitely onto something there: The biscuit brandishes a lead pipe at one point.)
Rick and Morty then make a run for it out of the subway, but while Rick escapes over the turnstile, Morty isn’t so lucky. Not that it matters—whether they wanted to or not, both characters ended up in the Wendy’s ad anyway. Fans can catch the branded content spot on Adult Swim throughout the rest of May.
Given that Adult Swim is the number one destination for young adults for the last 15 years, it makes smart business sense for social-media-savvy advertisers like Wendy’s to partner with the network in order to reach consumers through its engaged fan base, strategic marketing offerings, and diverse content slate, which includes “Rick and Morty.” It should also be noted that “Rick and Morty” reaches 10.1 million fans across social with over 37 million engagements.
“Wendy’s has made a name for itself on Twitter, developing a cult following of fans engaged not only with our platforms, but various others,” says Jimmy Bennett, Wendy’s VP of media and social. “It seemed natural to align ourselves with a show that also rises to the top for our fans. The power of pop culture allows us to join forces and deliver incredible integrated content and even sweeter delivery offers. We’ll continue to push ourselves in the entertainment space and engage our fans in unique, yet authentic, ways.”
Fan engagement for Adult Swim’s “Rick and Morty” is multi-dimensional, spanning social media, traditional television, live fan experiences like the Adult Swim Festival and the Pocket Mortys game. Partners can find value in leveraging this fan-first approach with their audiences, whether it’s working with “Rick and Morty” or other network series all year long.
“Adult Swim provides its partners with opportunities to innovate and reach fans in new ways,” says Jenn Cohen, senior vice president, entertainment content partnerships, WarnerMedia Ad Sales. “We work with advertisers looking to share their brand message in an entertaining manner to create branded content and integrations that are relevant to our audience.”
In addition to the branded spot, two custom Wendy’s Pocket Mortys were created and integrated into the “Rick and Morty: Pocket Mortys” app, as well as a custom gameplay recipe.