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Update 7:17am CT, Oct. 23: The video has returned to YouTube. Watch it below.
The party poopers over at Turner Broadcasting just removed arguably the most popular Rick and Morty fan video on the internet.
Back in June of 2016, a courtroom scene gone hilariously, profanely awry captured the attention of the internet. An inmate named Denver Allen serving time in a Georgia prison was accused of killing another prisoner. Allen was petitioning the court to let him defend himself and fire his public defender, who he had accused of demanding oral sex for “doing a good job.”
Suffice to say, the judge didn’t buy it. Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland later mined the vulgar back-and-forth between the two for a video, in which the titular characters voiced Allen and the judge, respectively.
Roiland’s video had only crude sketches of the characters, so a few months later independent animator Tiarawhy painstakingly animated the nearly 10-minute-long scene, which ended up going insanely viral. But now, the video has been blocked from YouTube on copyright grounds by Turner Broadcasting, the parent company of Adult Swim.
The animator released another video this week, explaining why the hugely popular fan creation—which had amassed over 16 million views at the time it was blocked—had apparently run afoul of Turner.
Tiarawhy writes in the video that they tried appealing the decision on grounds of fair use, but the appeal was rejected and any further attempts could result in disciplinary action.
The explanation video was shared on Reddit by understandably outraged fans, however, Tiarawhy jumped into the fray to make it clear that they didn’t intend to attack Turner for blocking their videos.
“Unlike the title of the OP I’m not outraged,” Tiarawhy wrote. “The video was made to answer the question of where the videos went, and what I’m working on.”
“Please don’t attack Turner over this, in the end, it is their IP and show and they have creative control,” the post continued. “The videos are blocked but I do not have any strikes. Sorry if it comes off anything but that.”
What a bummer. In the meantime, you can always watch Roiland’s version on the official Adult Swim YouTube account, but it’s just not the same.
Stacey Ritzen is a reporter and editor based in West Philadelphia with over 10 years' experience covering pop culture, web culture, entertainment, and news. You can follow her on Twitter @staceyritzen.