[UPDATED DECEMBER 10, 2013: I wrote this post moments after the season 3 finale of Community, thinking it was over. But now we have Season 5 coming up in January! I am glad to see #sixseasonsandamovie lives on as a hashtag. This post was my attempt to explain what it meant, why it was important, and how it showed the Dan Harmon truly understands his fans.]
If you don’t watch Community, “#SixSeasonsAndAMovie” was shown as the last few seconds of the season 3 finale (which could have been the series finale) as black text on a white background. It refers to one of the character’s prediction for the (now defunct) superhero show The Cape.
As sometimes happens, the phrase took on a life of its own. And Dan Harmon used it as his call to action to his fans to show their support.
Community could be my favorite TV show of all time. It competes with M*A*S*H and WKRP. And seeing as how this could have been the last episode, but wasn’t, I am thrilled.
I will now make an aside to note that Dan Harmon has been fired as show runner of Community. What does that mean? Well, the show runner is someone who is on the set to make sure a show follows a certain rhythm. It is an imprecise definition, but consider that Frank Darabont was the show runner for the first season of The Walking Dead, but not season 2. I’ve talked about the first half of season 2 of The Walking Dead and the second half, so I think my opinion of show runners is clear. If not, let me put it like this: it is a disastrous move. Harmon will still have a role in the show, but what it will be is unclear. (More on this over on AV Club.com)
Few shows can examine a form while also being part of that form. Community is first and foremost a comedy. It wants to make you laugh before making you cry or ponder. But by exploring just what a sitcom is, it also shows us why we need comedy. And why we need a comedy that reflects ourselves.
Community sometimes borders on the schmaltz, the overly and overtly emotional. But what it also does is shows us a reflection of ourselves. Fans of the show all identify with several of the characters. Rarely does one person say “I’m Abed” or “I’m Pierce.” Usually, it’s “I’m a little Troy and a little Annie” or “I’m Jeff at work and Abed at home.” We love the show because we are the show. We are the outcasts, the ones others called “losers”, the ones who never quite fit in. Here is something that doesn’t talk down to us or say “It’s OK to be a nerd” like some other highly rated comedy on another network.
It says we are genuine. We are who we are and don’t need to pretend. We are kind of messed up. And that’s OK. We can deal with it. And so should those who can’t deal with who we are.
And I know not everyone gets this show. That’s cool. I am a hardcore nerd and I don’t get Dr. Who. Not at all. No, really, I don’t like it. But I don’t make fun of Dr. Who fans, so I’m not sure why there’s a Community Sucks! vibe out there.
Unless it touches on something sensitive. And we either react positively or extremely negatively.
Whatever may come, six seasons and a movie, friends. That’s what Dan Harmon was saying with that hashtag at the end of the show. It was a call to action to those of us who get Community. Who value Community. He wanted us to tweet it knowing we’re the types who are on social media, who tweet our reactions and post our feelings.
And we did tweet it.
Tweet it. Keep tweeting it. Get Dan Harmon back for six seasons and a movie.
Then a couple more seasons.
And like my friend Adam Shaftoe suggests, tweet #BelieveinDanHarmon.
And if you have made it this far friends, please leave me a comment to know you were here. Thanks!
Now, watch this: