. . . is not that it won’t be as good, but rather that it will be. Which sounds weird, because I love Community and will be sad and will miss it if it returns and isn’t the same. But at the same time, if the show’s creator, Dan Harmon, can be fired for being too difficult for the studio/network to work with and for being a self-described asshole and crazy person, and a team of showrunners can be hired to replace him and the difference is minimal, then what does that say for the assholes and crazy people of the world?
The characters of Community are great because they are so messed up, and the show is great because it is so messed up, and they are messed up because they are the product of a specific mind, vision and personal experience, which are themselves probably messed up. What’s left for the world’s prickly, maladjusted people if that can be replicated by professionals who play well with others and don’t appear to be crazy?
I guess this is just another of my illusions about the world falling down (and I’m only just recovering from the realization when I started working in an editorial department that editors drinking whiskey out of their desks all day seems to only be a thing in movies from the 1940s and ’50s—imagine my disappointment). A part of me really wants to think that the entertainment I love could only come from the damaged people that make it, and I do seem to gravitate toward entertainment created by people who aren’t shy about sharing their damage. I know that this isn’t entirely true, since I’ve worked with plenty of professional, seemingly well adjusted writers and artists in my job as a comics editor. But if Community comes back and still feels like Community, that would shake my understanding of the world a little bit, just like how drunk I’m not at work every day shook it (I hasten to add that this is not the entire reason I became an editor).
No one I’ve explained this to has been sympathetic, largely because this is the complaint of a crazy person, albeit one without any particular creative talent. I should want the show I love to stay good. I want the best for the cast and everyone else who’s still with the show, since they’ve brought me so much entertainment and pleasure. Dan Harmon has other projects starting up (and his uproariously funny podcast) and doesn’t particularly need my loyalty in this respect. But I still believe that even more than it is anyone else’s, Community is his show and a product of the particular, unique way in which he is crazy—I understand that it’s perfectly likely that the new showrunners are equally crazy, but not in the same way, and apparently in a more network/studio–pleasing way—and as sad as it would be if the show was no longer as good without that particular crazy, it would just be disturbing if it was.
My God, I am placing so much more emotional energy and anxiety into the return of a TV show, whenever it comes back, than is remotely healthy. Once again, Internet, family, loved ones, people who are worried that I might be drinking at work: I’m sorry.