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Sunday, May 11, 2014

Community is finally canceled. (and I'm glad it's dead.)


It's official. Dan Harmon's stalwart sitcom marginally about affordable higher education is finished. But looking back, I was more than impressed it got two seasons. "That's enough." I thought at the time. "That's enough to land gracefully." Imagine how 2010 me would react at the news it would end at season 5! That's amazing partly because it never compromised. It never tried to go broader in reaction to low ratings. It was always funny and it was always unique. I loved it for that, and I'll never forget how much I enjoyed it.

But these are darker times. I haven't blogged much about it because I didn't have nice things to say. I was one of the few that thought the Harmon-less season 4 was just fine (please save your boos until the end.) and that his triumphant restoration to the showrunner throne had far more diminished returns than his departure.

This was not his fault, no one could have made an amazing season 5. The budget was slashed to even ribbon-ier ribbons and Donald Glover bowed out after only five episodes. Episodes he barely featured in until the last. Jeff became a professor at greendale, but aside from adding Jonathan Banks as a new (and vastly improved) Pierce stand-in, nothing was ever mined from that storyline.

Season 5 felt like it was waiting to die the whole time. Like a funeral where nobody knows what to say. Remember when we did dungeons and dragons? That was fun, right? Hey, Duncan's been gone a while. Well he's back... we've only written one storyline that really uses him... f**k what's the point any more? TREASURE MAP! Now go home.

That's the kind of message season 5 left me. Aside from the bright spots of Troy's departure, meowmeowbeenz, and the Dean's fantastic freestyle in his payday bar costume, I was more depressed than entertained.

Do I wish they could make more? Of course. No real bridges were burned creatively, and no episode was out and out "bad." It was just personally disappointing. If that was the end, so be it. At least Harmon got to throw dirt on the grave in person.

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