It seemed too good to be true that Community should return to NBC’s Friday lineup next week. The fourth season would return under the helm of new showrunners on October 19th after a few months of uncertainty over its future. After so much tumult surrounding the show during the spring, people were poised to approach the new season with some worry. It turned out that uneasiness was warranted.
NBC put out a statement on Monday stating that Community—along with Whitney, but who cares—would not return to this upcoming Friday comedy schedule they had planned because it was not a death slot at all, oh no. It is just that they’re so busy, you guys, with this great new Monday through Wednesday stuff they have out, so this comedy thing will just be tucked away into their “back pocket” just in case something changes down the line.
Now, Friday isn’t too bad a day for NBC. They have a Grimm rerun at 8. Then a new Grimm at 9. Then Dateline plays because people just didn’t get enough of unsettling murder stories. But really, Grimm does well on a night that worked well for the X-Files. If NBC planned to fit Community into the 8:30pm slot, it didn’t seem to be a move in earnest.
The New York Times put up an interview this morning with new showrunners David Guarascio and Moses Port, who seemed game to steer Community while keeping Dan Harmon’s creation “what it was.” Sony and NBC must’ve thought Guarascio and Port to be dopey and flexible when hiring them, so fans will be happy to know that in terms of storylines, the pair put their foot down and said, “We came on to keep doing this. We did have to draw a couple lines in the sand.”
At this point, however, fans won’t see Community get the chance to win them over under new leadership. NBC claims to be focusing on Monday to Wednesday promotion and how some shows hold up, code for Animal Practice’s cancellation. Here’s hoping to a January premiere of Community, at the very least.