The video, entitled "Daryl", was a five-minute comedy pilot starring Harmon in a parody of Showtime's serial killer drama Dexter. In the scene, Harmon's character is seen breaking into a house and simulating sexual assault of a baby doll. In his statement, as reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Harmon admits that the pilot was "too distasteful."
"In 2009, I made a 'pilot' which strove to parody the series Dexter and only succeeded in offending," Harmon said. "I quickly realized the content was way too distasteful and took the video down immediately. Nobody should ever have to see what you saw and for that, I sincerely apologize."
The video, which was originally made in conjunction with Showtime according to its description on the alternative website Channel 101 resurfaced during San Diego Comic-Con this weekend which Harmon attended along with Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland. The video has since been called out on social media for its distressing depiction of child rape and comes on the heels of filmmaker James Gunn's firing by Disney for his own controversial tweets, some as much as a decade old, resurfaced as well.
In addition to Harmon's apology, Adult Swim, the adult-oriented nighttime programming block for Cartoon Network which broadcasts Rick and Morty also issued a statement about Harmon and the video.
"At Adult Swim, we seek out and encourage creative freedom and look to push the envelope in many ways, particularly around comedy," the statement read. "The offensive content of Dan's 2009 video that recently surfaced demonstrates poor judgement and does not reflect the type of content we seek out. Dan recognized his mistake at the time and has apologized. He understands there is no place for this type of content here at Adult Swim."
Rick and Morty was renewed in May for 70 additional episodes. There has been no word if today's events will impact Harmon's employment with Adult Swim or the continuation of Rick and Morty.