Dan Harmon, co-creator of Rick & Morty, took Twitter trolls to task today in an interview with EW about the show’s female writers.


The writers’ room at the Adult Swim cartoon show has usually been a boys club, but season three brought in some female writers to mix things up. Despite the season getting the usual rave reviews from critics and fans, some pesky fans on Twitter still reached out to troll the women. Jane Becker and Jessica Gao were credited with writing episodes “Rickmancing the Stone” and “Pickle Rick,” and were subsequently harassed online, and had their personal information stolen and leaked online – also known as doxxing.

Harmon had a long spiel about his hatred for the types of so-called fans who go after female writers, noting that it doesn’t only happen on his show. “I’m on a Twitter sabbatical, so the last thing I saw about that was [the Reddit thread detailing the harassment], and I’ve seen the tweets they’ve sent to the female writer,” Harmon said. “I was familiar going into the third season, having talked to Felicia Day, that any high-profile women get doxxed, they get harassed, they get threatened, they get slandered. And part of it is a testosterone-based subculture patting themselves on the back for trolling these women. Because to the extent that you get can get a girl to shriek about a frog you’ve proven girls are girly and there’s no crime in assaulting her with a frog because it’s all in the name of proving something. I think it’s all disgusting.”

He continued to knock the mentality behind the trolling, and show anger toward it. “These knobs, that want to protect the content they think they own — and somehow combine that with their need to be proud of something they have, which is often only their race or gender. It’s offensive to me as someone who was born male and white, and still works way harder than them, that there’s some white male [fan out there] trying to further some creepy agenda by ‘protecting’ my work,” Harmon continued. “I’ve made no bones about the fact that I loathe these people. It f–king sucks. And the only thing I can say is if you’re lucky enough to make a show that is really good that people like, that means some bad people are going to like it too. You can’t just insist that everybody who watches your show get their head on straight … And I’m speaking for myself — I don’t want the show to have a political stance. But at the same time, individually, these [harassers] aren’t politicians and don’t represent politics. They represent some shit that I probably believed when I was 15.”

Adding to that, Harmon continued to say that it was unfair to call out a singular writer in any case. “It’s total ignorance of how writing a television show works,” he said. “It’s frustrating enough having run Community for several years to see threads like, ‘Oh well, it makes sense this episode was written by Andy Bobrow because when Hilary Winston wrote her episode she tends to linger more on dialogue and Andy is better at the I-want-to-hold-you moments.’ And I want to scream at my computer: ‘You idiots, we all write the show together!'” he continued. “If you can tell the difference between one writer and another on a show I’m running I’ve probably gotten so lazy that it hasn’t all been blended and refined in the usual process. The reason one person’s name goes on an episode is that someone has to and everyone deserves one of those times at bat where they have to do all the grunt work — they have to do all the outlining, sometimes, if they’re willing to, they can expand into the post-production process. There’s a bunch of reasons why we don’t accurately reflect how many writers contribute to each episode in the credits.”

Rick & Morty airs on Adult Swim on Sunday nights.

Read more about: