Where, when, and how to get Szechuan sauce
Starting Monday, February 26, Szechuan sauce will be available until supplies run out/it seeps back into the void whence it came. Twenty million sauce packs will be distributed across every McDonald's in the US. That's far more than was available on the day that shall surely live in infamy, when there were reports that some stores only got 20 packets. So please, please don't trade your car for Szechuan sauce.
Why people are crazy about Szechuan sauce
If you're confused about how and why nugget sauce made nerds riot, here's what happened: The company tried to put out a limited release of the sauce on October 7 last year, and the response was apocalyptic. Put simply, there wasn't enough sauce. People freaked out. These were mostly fans of the animated series Rick and Morty, the Season 3 premiere of which featured a stirring monologue by Rick about how his life's sole mission was to taste the sweet ichor of McDonald's Szechuan sauce again.
This sauce was originally released to promote the Disney movie Mulan way back in 1998 -- and it was pretty much forgotten until Rick and Morty referenced it. So, basically, it was all a bit that some fans took way, way too far. McDonald's tried to get in the fun, ended up stoking the wrath of its fans, and now must pay the blood sacrifice: bring back the sauce yet again.
You can learn all about that strange history in McDonald's new three-part podcast "The Sauce," which was put together with Studio@Gizmodo and Onion Labs and will tell you everything you could ever want to know about how the heck we got into this mess to begin with.