Community Loses Creator Dan Harmon

Just a day after Community's fantastic three-episode finale-ganza, bad news has befallen the comedy: Creator and showrunner Dan Harmon will not be back for Season 4. Rumors have been swirling about Harmon's possible future (or lack thereof) with the show, but they just didn't seem real because who would leave a job like that? The cult comedy was renewed after a massive fan outcry, so why wouldn't its creator be jumping on board?

We may never have the answer to that question. UPDATE: Read Harmon's side of the story here—he says he didn't know about NBC's decision, and that he was fired. Well, that's a bummer. When will we get an explanation from NBC and Sony?

It's amazing that Harmon's vision lasted as long as it did, if you ask me. I love Community and think that it should be mandated by the FDA as a daily supplement, but even I understand that it's a miracle the show has been on television for three years. Behind the scenes, I'm sure there was a lot of pressure from NBC to make it appeal to a broader audience, but what's the point in sticking around for a diluted version of your vision? What's weird is, we saw Dan Harmon's vision over the course of the first three seasons.

Does Dan Harmon leaving suck? Yes, it does. But is it also awesome that he stayed on for three seasons? Yes, it is. Some people just aren't cut out for network B.S.

Regardless, here's the good news—and I promise you it's good news, even though most of you will treat it like a stepfather situation: Moses Port and David Guarascio will step in as showrunners. A lot of you might not know those names, but they are the guys behind one of my favorite comedies of the last decade, The CW's vastly underrated Aliens in America (seriously, that show had more heart than a cardiologist convention). Aliens in America and Community have a lot in common in their basic tone, which is "legitimate heartwarming comedy." Just last week, Port and Guarascio were behind the Fox pilot El Jefe, and they've served as writer/consultants on Happy Endings. Honestly, I've been dying to see their next project, and if I could choose anyone to take over, it would probably be these guys. That's the good news.

The bad news? Harmon and his infinite well of absurd genius are gone. Same goes for Harmon's fellow executive producers Neil Goldman and Garret Donovan, who've left to run the show at Fox's very un-Community-esque Ben and Kate. But things could be worse. Will Community be different in Season 4? Maybe. Well, probably. But honestly, this news isn't the series' be-all-end-all. There are a lot of people calling this situation the end of Community, but that's just doomsday cynicism. Community's characters and tone are fixed; hopefully the new regime knows what to do.

Oh, and please don't think this happened because of Chevy Chase, because it didn't.


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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#Communityisdead ='(
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Way to treat someone that made you $, Bozos!
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Unfortunately, in the network's eyes... if it isn't a #1 hit then it's hurting them. And as awesome as Community is, the ratings aren't that great (a real niche market).



So in the Networks eyes, they probably felt they did him a FAVOR by keeping him on as long as they did. Like he was a charity case or something, airing his stuff without maximum profit.
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There's so much talent on community, it's hard to think it could ever be bad, but with Harmon gone and both his executive producers moving to other projects, I don't see how we will get the same insane awesomeness.
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If the writer's just write as if in the heads of Troy & Abed, all will be fine.
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After reading Dan Harmons full account of these events I am heartbroken! This is an artists worst nightmare come true! You'd think NBC would LEARN from their mistakes *cough* Leno/O'Brian *cough*
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I don't think its the WORST nightmare... it really depends on what the new show-runners do to Community now that he's gone.



If they TRY to keep it a quirky comedy then it might not be that bad in his eyes.



But if they try to turn it into a cookie-cutter sitcom with a laugh track, then Dan might feel like swallowing a bullet.
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60 seasons and a movie each year!
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Wait what?... How can the creator of a show be fired? That's ridiculous... WHAT?!... Am I missing something?
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Anyone can be fired, except for Mr. $

Sad but true.
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Bye darkest timeline! I'm going to my dreamatoruim to live in a world where community lasts for 60 seasons and a movie!
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not cool, NBC. NOT COOL.
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Shortened season and no original showrunner ? Uh-oh......
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lol I broke this before you did =P +10 points for me, to bad this is sad day for community, btw Co-Producer and writer Chris Mckenna is also out according to his twitter.

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NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO :(
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'Aliens in America' was amazing but different than 'Community'. 'Community' will definitely be different with them as showrunners, whether that is good or bad I'll wait and see. I'm fearing it's going to be like 'Seinfeld' when Larry David left. Season 8 of 'Seinfeld' was the last and weakest of all the seasons and I really don't want to see 'Community' go down that same direction..
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This sucks. Fortunately the cast is strong, but the writing can really make or break it.
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I know Community will be in syndication for Comedy Central so why aren't there talks to continue it there? Maybe there are, I don't know but CC seems like the place for such a great off beat show.
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Well there's a difference between buying a show for syndication and actually buying THE SHOW to air yourself. In terms of PRICE, it's a big deal.



That being said, Comedy Central did ressurect Futurama
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I loved "Aliens in America". Calling it "vastly underrated" is an understatement. It's a damn shame that networks cater to the morons of this country who watch garbage like "Dancing with D-List Celebrities" and the 45,219th episode of "Law & Order". I guess Nielsen Ratings does not measure viewer intelligence.
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Oh, come on Community doesn't have to appeal to wider audiences eager to watch sitcomy shows. If anything, Community has to go crazier than ever. It's Community final season anyway (actually half a season), so at least let it go on a crazy bang! But now I'm really doubting that is going to happen.
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There has been no word of it being it's final season, we may get lucky!
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Why renew it when you fire the creator? You cancelled Awake now I watch nothing on NBC. Nothing But Crap.
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I was worried in the second half of the season because it started to get really, really unfunny. And then the final 4 episodes of the season were insanely brilliant, so this news is tragic. In my mind, the creative theme episodes were the signature of Community, and I'm worried they'll disappear, or the characters will become characatures.
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I totally disagree - this was ALL about Chevy and his giant ego. He likely refused to work with Dan anymore and NBC stuck with Chevy over Dan. Even worse - Chevy is a non-funny talentless hack. Sad to say I'm done with Community now - it had a great 3 seasons though! BIH Chevy for essentially killing such a great show all due to your oversized ego. Only way I will ever watch another episode of Community is if Chevy is gone so... like I said - it had a GREAT three season run! Show is dead to me now. Can't wait to see what Dan Harmon comes up with next though!
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NOT TRUE! Someone asked Dan Harmon this on twitter and his reply basically said they were friends- just really immature babies. What he wrote implied that Chevy was actually peeved off/ upset at the news and he'd rung Dan to say his annoyance at the decision. Jim Rash also had an interview and was asked the same thing and he almost laughed saying that had ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with it... I don't think we can blame him for this...
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I agree, chances are Chevy Chase has some serious stocks in NBC or Sony, so they had to choose him or Dan Harmon.
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What the fuck? I love community but I won't be watching next season. Way to screw up Sony...sure, any writer can write an episode, but the mastermind is Harmon and it won't be the same...Community gonna get cancelled soon next season...all my hopes for the show are now vanished...FUCK you Sony...Fuck you NBC.
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Yay! Another big-mouth moron who will most likely still watch Community secretly and post under a different alias next season.
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Uhh, guys?

I need help reacting to something.
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It sucks that he's gone, but I love Community so much that I will keep watching. Six seasons and a movie, we're almost there!
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*Enter Abed-Watching-The-Clock-Being-Changed Noise*
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This will be the last i watch of community, not because the show cant be good without Den but because of what it says about TV networks today. They try to cater to the largest audience and in doing so turn original idesa in to benile cookie cutter crap.



I for one will not be watching any new NBC show nor paying to see another moive under the Sony umberella (i wont be paying mind you, ill still be watching).



If anyone has any better ideas on how we can make sony/nbc think twice about doing shit like this again, im all up for a good old campaign *nuts and cupcakes have already been done) how about some moist towlettes?
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I say we mail them evil Abed Goatee's. Now that they have sent us into the Dark Timeline it seems fitting
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This is indeed the darkest timeline!

Great job NBC and Sony! Stifle every bit of creativity and originality out there! YOU are our true heroes!!

(And now I can't wait for evil Abed to come and cut your hands off with a bone saw!)
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"Will Community be different in Season 4? Maybe. Well, probably. But honestly, this news isn't the series' be-all-end-all. There are a lot of people calling this situation the end of Community, but that's just doomsday cynicism."

Regardless of whether the show ends up any different or not I won't support this type of action. Harmon MADE the show what it is even if others can "replicate" what it is after the hard work is done.



I won't be watching. We should be supporting Harmon's awesomeness not the studios that cripple his vision.



On the flip side, I've seen what a showrunner change can do (I watch Supernatural)...it can be crippling, it can take a great show and make it painful to watch week to week.



I'd rather the show have gotten cancelled.
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NBC - "No Bloody Clue" what they're doing!
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Unbelievable.



Sony is right up the street from here, I shall go and give them the finger. For 3 days straight.
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This is definitely the darkest timeline.
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I'd rather the show had been cancelled.
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*sigh*
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the only good thing about this (and I mean the only thing) is that surely NBC are looking to extend this past its 13 episodes? There's no reason whatsoever to replace Harmon if they were only going to cancel it after this 13 episode run thats already guaranteed. Is there?
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doesn't the cw do all teeny bopper crap? and yes i include nikita, which i watch, in that.
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and unfortunately unless their work with happy endings was only season one then i'm not impressed. i really feel like the shows went from being very funny to having some good lines occasionally between seasons 1 and 2.
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That's terrible that harmon got fired (!!) but things are looking up because it looks like he's been replaced with the two showrunners for the IT crowd which I urge all of you to see (hint: It's hilarious).
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Sorry to break it to you, but they were only the showrunners for the American version of the IT Crowd, which never aired. I do agree that the British one is hilarious though.
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Well this certainly is gonna suck, Dan Harmon set the tone for Community and made it what it was. I would digress that this season started off kind of shaky but they were able to really put it into place toward the end of the season with the Video Game EP, the Ocean's 11 spoof and the Fight Club parody of the AC School. I mean I'm happy the shows coming back but I don't whether you can make the study room interaction as it was when Dan Harmon was helming the show. Will they change Abed? (Aka give him a love interest or make him more human), Will Troy get smarter? Will Jeff become nice? and most importantly Chang, how do you handle an over the top demented lunatic like him? Etc....Will the show focus on the characters or continue to have oddball eps? So many questions left unanswered and such a long time to answer them in.
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my god these past few weeks have kind of sucked when it comes to community (cept for the fact that there is a fourth season). I just hope that the quality doesnt change, or the format of the show. but i guess we wont see what happens till sept.
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This hurts, especially since Thursday night was the best 90 minutes of television I've ever experienced.
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This may be overreacting but I declare today a national day of mourning. Thanks a lot Sony.
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If Community would get back to a Season 1 standard I wouldn't complain at all. You can have amazing off the wall comedy without a surreal outerspace left field angle that Community has become. Let's remember, this started out based on students at a community college which is the core story line. If a change would truly get us 6 season and a movie, wouldn't that be awesome? Community will still be awesome and I think we all know we're guaranteed it won't turn into Whitney, haha.
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Everyone's blaming NBC but it's really Sony (who produces the show) that made the decision. So we should hate them more.
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sony are the geniuses who managed to go from being the #1 electronics company in the world to a failing behemoth in a single decade. They managed this stupendous fall by failing to stay relevant and losing sight of their customers. This is just another case of a REALLY AWFULLY BAD decision on their part.
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A million thumbs up for that comment. A very accurate analysis.
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In a way this could be a good thing.



Community has never had great numbers, and was in risk of cancellation this season. We were lucky it got picked up for a short season 4. Now, if Harmon was still involved, we would have got a great season 4, and then been devastated when it was cancelled before season 5.



This way, season 4 will probably end up being completely different, and less awesome, and by the time its cancelled at the end of the season, we will all have grown tired of the new community, and we won't be as sad when its cancelled.



Its a good strategy to use when you want to cancel a show, but don't want people to complain. Just ruin the show completely and then no one will care when you cancel it.



Good job NBC.
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Yeeee-ah, that's lookin' on the bright side! Aheh, heh, hehh....
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I don't see any reason to threaten NBC with a boycott or anything like that. I only started watching Community a few months ago, and have totally fallen in love with the show. My love for the show is important, but the beginning of that sentence is even more telling because I didn't even know Community existed before I made a random joke about a signed Levar Burton photo on facebook a few months ago. I didn't realise it, but I have apparently been "boycotting" NBC for the better part of the last decade. In short, NBC has been so bad for so long that I didn't even realise that I had stopped watching it.



As far as the situation goes with Dan Harmon, I will continue watching Community, but this seems an awful lot like a nail in the coffin moment. The show may or may not be the same when it comes back, but the chances of it lasting more than the 13 episodes it has been renewed for are about nil. Then it will go away, and I can forget that NBC exists again. Just like everybody else.
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Every one was sad about Frisky Dingo and then Adam Reed made Archer. Dan Harmon will probably do something great now. After he masturbates.
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Pretty much the only silver lining out of this whole mess.

FX... HBO... Comedy Central... A super-star just became a free agent cause his old team couldn't handle his awesomeness. So... your move.
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I tried to stay positive when they moved Community to Fridays. I was even understanding (albeit very disappointed) when they cancelled Awake. But now, I'm done. NBC, you're a bunch of dicks.
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Oh, good point GreendaleAlum. Sony, you're dicks too.
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That's what you get for being a genious and the creator of one of the best comedies ever. How presumptuos to think that you'll be able to keep your job after doing something like that. Fired after the pilot, that's what Harmon should have been. If you make anything other than braindead boring commedy for braindead boring people you best not show your face at work.



NBC WTF!
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While it does shock me a little. I can't really blame Harmon. He has consistently brought the best comedy forth season after season for NBC only to be treated like a wayward foster child, locked away in a closet by criminal foster parents. Why not go out on top with a lot of credit both from fans and critics alike and use that capital to secure himself a position in a network that will treat him and his products with the respect that he deserves.



Now will this effect the quality of Community. Perhaps and perhaps not. Harmon has a lot to do with the quality, but as far as I know the writers haven't jumped ship yet. They can write a good story and the cast can bring funny if they need to. And the cast is top notch. They will do what they do and it will still be better than most comedies on TV today. And still better than anything NBC has and is bringing forth. It does however solidify in my mind that the 12 episodes will be their last. Which is too bad. Because this is going to be picked up quick in syndication by TBS or Comedy Central and it is going to be a hit.



I will say it again. NBC I hate you. You are making it easier and easier to ignore your entire network.
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Wait he was fired? What the hell NBC. DUMB. I didn't think you could get dumber.
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The words "We want to try to appeal to a broader audience." terrify me to the core because it means, yes, they are trying to find new ways to keep the show on the air by increasing its audience and therefore its ratings. But having to speak those words is only necessary when that was what made the show great... So in drawing in new viewers who are curious, they don't stick around because it's too late in the game, so they lose new viewers and they lose the old because they screwed up a great thing. Ratings continue to decline and, in a purely business decision, the show gets canceled anyway. The network will "apologize" to the fans that despite all of their "hard work", they just couldn't justify keeping it on the air. They end up leaving a legacy with a turd on it and even owning the collection of DVDs makes the fans cringe.



They really should've made a decision day one to either go broad or appease the fans. I mean, it's going to be paired with Whitney for suck's fake! It's the perfect contrast of a broad-audience, high-rating disaster of writing and a brilliant, critically-acclaimed, low-rating disaster of business. Switching in the middle only ruins it for everyone.



I think we can all agree that most of the time, networks are evil, oftentimes reasonably acting like the businesses they are and sometimes surprisingly like the fans for which they air the shows (e.g., the head of the CW saving Veronica Mars year after year, ABC *initially* saving Scrubs and, most recently, a proper Fringe final season from FOX?!?). I also think from reading the comments that we agree that Dan Harmon was a genius and an ass. It just seems that NBC did everything in their power to avoid dealing with him - possibly from past experience...



This won't end well. :(
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I never liked Aliens In America. Too obvious a ripoff of Little Mosque On The Prairie. And also not funny. But I won't hold it against them. Happy Endings is kinda good. Hopefully they will not totally networkify Community. (Laugh track anyone? Ack!)
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I officially hate NBC -__-

Also here's a link to Dan Harmon's blog about his being fired

http://danharmon.tumblr.com/post/23339272200/hey-did-i-miss-anything
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The thing I'm scared of is not getting the envisioned plan. The fourth year of Jeff Winger's journey to graduation. I hope we get the main part of that. And not just 13 random classes the students are taking.



Jeff Winger contacts his father, Chang plots one last revenge with City College, the group finally graduates. That's it. That's all I want. Harmon has to have notes somewhere. Hopefully he's nice enough to give them to a writer or the new showrunners so they can follow that.



If not, then I hope season 4 ends with Abed walking out of his new Dreamtorium-Box.
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True. If the show decides to take a whole new direction without looking at the original plan, it'll turn into a disaster.

However, I try to have some faith in the new showrunners. It's not like they are idiots, and Harmon is the only one in Hollywood capable of producing high quality material. The new showrunners will surely look at the big picture, and they know that this show has a fervently loyal fan base. They can't just decide to ignore everything that has happened in the past. How well they will succeed is of course the big question mark. Especially when NBC seems to be pressuring them to change things up. I don't envy Port and Guarascio. They are in an ungrateful position having to take over a show on the brink of cancellation, with both NBC and fans on their backs.
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I'm trying to be positive, as well. I appreciate Happy Endings. And figure Port and Guarascio can do a fine job. I just want that planned out character journey to be followed. We might not get any more animated episodes or pillow fights or dinners with Abed, but at least give me the REAL finish for the characters.



My fear is that the two of the new showrunners are being paid A LOT of money, JUST TO change the show completely and revamp it. Which would change the tone and true purpose behind the show.
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Yeah, even though I never watched Gilmore Girls, I read online that the original showrunners held on to the last scene they had planned for the show when they left or something? Or the last words spoken? And basically said let these new guys figure it out for themselves?
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Indeed. And we never found out what those words were supposed to be.



Also, Gilmore Girls without Amy Sherman-Palladino was a disaster, and I'd rather not be reminded of it while I'm hoping the Harmon-less Community will be good.
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You know, after each season people kept saying Scrubs was going to be cancelled too. Really sucks about Dan Harmon, we all knew this was bound to happen.
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