A Hiatus (in terms of television programming) is essentially a break period between episodes and normal schedule programming. Normally used during periods of 'seasons,' a hiatus can be called on a series for numerous reasons. Some hiatuses are planned, normally done so episodes can be released on a date where ratings would be the highest. They can also be unexpected, caused by certain factors such as budget, lower ratings, involvement of other shows on the same network, etc.
Happy Tree Friends is no exception to hiatuses being called. Unlike usual series found on television, where episodes of a series could be released on a weekly basis during a season, episodes of Happy Tree Friends are made in a process of ordering/requesting by Mondo Media. This means if Mondo Media does not order an episode, production for said episode will not be made. This setup is subject to multiple break periods between episodes, long or short, and for many reasons. The budget is the main factor to most of the show's hiatuses.
To date, there have been three large hiatuses called on the Internet series of Happy Tree Friends: one being a two-year-long hiatus during the television run of Happy Tree Friends, one fourteen-month-long hiatus between the episodes See You Later, Elevator and Clause For Concern, and one after the release of Dream Job, which would last over two years until December 2016.
October 2005 - November 2007
This hiatus was called after the release of From A to Zoo on October 16th 2005. Following this episode, the Internet series had no new episodes aired during the entirety of 2006, because of the TV series being produced. With the final episode of the first TV season having aired in December of that year, the hiatus lasted another ten months before the release of Read 'em and Weep on November 2nd 2007.
October 2010 - December 2011
- Main article: Happy Tree Friends is dead!
This hiatus was called after the release of the Internet episode See You Later, Elevator on October 1st, 2010. After the release of the episode, no new canonical episodes would be released for the season (season 3) until the release of the Internet episode Clause For Concern on December 8th, 2011, just over fourteen months.
Between this year-long break, several Internet shorts, known as Happy Tree Friends Break (shortened to HTF Breaks), were released. Spanning roughly under a minute each, many of these Breaks, starting with Take Your Seat, ended with the phrase 'is dead!' on the title of the HTF Break logo, signaling the idea that the series may have been cancelled, and no new episodes were being made. However, after the release of the HTF Break Butter Me Up, the 'is dead' phrase was erased by Lumpy, giving a possible hint that new episodes were in the works. After a couple of more HTF Breaks, the first canonical episode after the hiatus, Clause For Concern, was released, finally ending the fourteen-month-long hiatus.
March 2014 - December 2016
This 2-year hiatus was called after the release of the episode Dream Job on March 6th, 2014, just over three years from the end of the previous hiatus. While it was feared that the series may have been cancelled, there are multiple reasons for Mondo Media to call this hiatus.
The most prominent reason is due to the production of multiple films by Mondo Media, including a film for Happy Tree Friends. Due to the possible scope and size of the project, it is easy to understand that focus would be made on the film rather than the production of small Internet episodes. However, it is unknown when or if the film will be released, and, according to a tweet by Kenn Navarro on July 10th, 2015, to the best of his knowledge, production of the film has yet to begin.
A second reason for the cause of the hiatus is due to Kenn Navarro working on two other internet series known as Two-Bit and D_Void on his created YouTube channel, Zwak, neither of which are produced by the network and Two-Bit has not been released by Mondo Media but in 2020, the two episodes of D_Void have been uploaded on their YouTube channel.
The final reason for the hiatus is that no new episodes are being requested by Mondo Media, which was stated by Kenn Navarro in an article on zwakattack.com.
On April 27th 2016, Kenn announced on Twitter that he was exploring the possibility of new episodes. A month later, a response was given on the HTF Channel's Q&A page, implying that new episodes are in development.
On October 28th 2016, Mondo released a teaser announcing that five new episodes would be arriving in December. Kenn announced that the hiatus was caused by issues such as budget, schedule, and availability. The five episodes would then be made available for online purchase in order to raise Mondo's budget. On January 16th 2017, Kenn stated "the sales did okay, but fell below what was expected". He then said that there probably won't be any new episodes in the near future, but he remains optimistic.