Film & TV

Troy and Abed In The…?

For those of you that have ever wondered which timeline you’re in, be assured that this is the darkest. Not because you have a solid semester of 9ams, but because of the indefinite postponing of Season Four of Community. A collective wringing of hands accompanies this news from Community’s small but loyal fan base. And why wouldn’t it, when what could easily come across as an offbeat and frankly weird TV show turns out to hold the answers to all (yes, all) of life’s problems? Just been through a nasty breakup? Easy, write a catchy reggae anthem referring to your ex as a “B” and play it on the Downs. Can’t find your pen after a seminar? Don’t let anybody leave until all trust has been done away with (or don’t, because a monkey probably took it).

And it’s not even just the keen and nerdy among us who appreciated Community. It has a long history of nominations and awards behind it, including nominations for the best Comedy series at both the 1st and 2nd Critics’ choice television awards and a 2011 Creative Arts. Community was a success, at least as far as the critics and the fans were concerned.

So we can all join Troy in crying unreasonable amounts now that the proposed date of Friday 19th October has been changed. But could we have seen this coming, given the show’s continually decreasing ratings? It was also a bad sign when the show was pushed into the infamous Friday Night Death Slot, which has seen the demise of many a well-loved show programme. There was that extended hiatus before season 3, when Community’s existence hung in the balance. Then there was perhaps the final nail in the coffin, the firing of the show’s writer and all-round daddy, Dan Harmon, after his disagreements with Chevy Chase, and his subsequent hiring as the show’s “consulting producer”. This means that Harmon will have no input, apart from, in his own words, “I guess sharpening pencils and stuff”.

Community’s low popularity and resulting postponement can also be blamed on the environment it’s being aired in. In a country where the show receiving the top ratings for the last five years running is American Idol, is Community just too darn weird? I, being a die-hard fan, would say no. Community  in its later seasons, was having to contend with being put into the same time slot as The Big Bang Theory, which is probably the closest thing in terms of pure nerdiness, although more accessible to the American Idol-watching masses. Then, it was actually scheduled at the same time as American Idol. Thirdly, Community hasn’t even been that weird since season 3, which concentrated more on fabulous adventures and continuing story lines.

So what are Community’s prospects? Well the producers are adamant that this is only a hiatus, not a cancellation. It’s likely that one of the shows currently running will soon be cancelled to make way (*cough Animal Practice cough*). It’s also likely that a space will be opened up with the ending of 30 Rock in January, as far as that may seem. Finally, the Friday Night sentence is not necessarily one of death – other classics like Fringe made it! All is not lost for those of us who want a bit of Troy and Abed in the morning, so all I can say is to keep those black goatees in the drawer just for now.

Priya Thethi

Film & TV
4 Comments on this post.
  • Felix
    15 October 2012 at 18:32
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    six seasons and a movie!

  • Annie’s Boobs
    15 October 2012 at 23:18
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    People who watch How I Met Your Mother should be watching Community. To be fair the third season went downhill fast, so that might be a factor why its ratings were dwindling. Ah well, Donde Esta La Biblioteca

  • Bane
    16 October 2012 at 10:21
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    There’s a reason why NBC is the worst hell on earth… Hope. Every man who has ventured on to this network over the centuries has looked at the schedule and imagined viewing freedom. So easy… So simple… And like shipwrecked men turning to sea water from uncontrollable thirst, many have died trying. I learned here that there can be no true despair without hope. So, as they terrorise Community, NBC will feed its people hope to poison their souls. It will let them believe they can survive so that you can watch them clamoring over each other to stay in the blanket fortress. You can watch them torture an entire community and when you have truly understood the depth of their failure, they will fulfill Ra’s al Ghul’s destiny… They will destroy Community and then, when it is done and Community is ashes, then you have NBC’s permission to die.

  • Josh Franks
    16 October 2012 at 10:42
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    What a lovely, lovely comment.

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