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Smiling Friends, the absurdist animated TV series everyone won't shut up about, is getting a third season

How long now before the Rick and Morty-fication of it all begins?

Smiling Friends season 2 - the gang with Gwimbly
Image credit: Adult Swim

The surreal workplace animated comedy Smiling Friends will be getting a third season on Adult Swim as Internet buzz surrounding it reaches an all-time high.

The programming block, which is part of Cartoon Network in case you forgot, is dropping the news (via Variety) during its Annecy 2024 panel, where Oh My God, Yes!, A Series of Extremely Relatable Circumstances, and Ha Ha You Clowns, are also being confirmed to get full-series greenlights.

Smiling Friends was created by Zach Hadel (former Newgrounds and YouTube animator) and Michael Cusack (YOLO) for Adult Swim. The animated show, which consists of episodes that last around 11 minutes, revolves around the surreal adventures and odd misadventures of a small company and its employees, all of whom are dedicated to spreading happiness to those who ask for it. Of course, things go off the rails fast and quite often, with many episodes exploring their out-of-work lives as well.

Even though the series' pilot episode aired in 2020 and season 1 was released in 2022, the arrival of season 2 this year has led to a massive surge in popularity online, with many viewers going back to watch season 1 for the first time, before jumping into the second set of episodes. Because of this, the season 3 renewal comes as no surprise, as Smiling Friends has rapidly become one of the network's most high-profile adult animated shows in a good while.

Personally, I'm usually bored to tears by most of these absurdist animated shows aimed at adults, but Smiling Friends has totally 'cracked the code' for me in a way I hadn't seen since Rick and Morty's early seasons (I jumped off that ship around halfway through season 3 and never got back on). It's exactly what I can only describe as a relentless shitpost full of creativity and random ideas that either work or don't, but move so fast that it's hard to be annoyed by them. The voice acting (cameos included) is fantastic across the board, so that helps as well.

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