We’ve all had about a week to try to wrap our heads around the fact that Community was saved and brought back for a sixth season by Yahoo, of all places. Some of you have probably come to terms with it by now. Many of you haven’t, I imagine. I mean, Yahoo. I didn’t even know that was an option. It’s kind of like if your favorite restaurant was closed and you were frantically looking for another place to eat dinner, and out of nowhere a guy from Dick’s Sporting Goods flagged you down in the parking lot and said “Hey, so, we have a barbecue pit now. Not a huge one. Just something we’re trying to get into. So, if you’re hungry…”
What I’m saying is that I’m sure you have some questions about all of this. Luckily, TV Guide put together a nice little explainer of how everything went down and what to expect going forward, the highlights of which I will summarize here:
- Community was really, really close to getting canceled. Some of the crew and writers had already moved on to other projects, and the show’s offices had already been taken over by a new series for Netflix. The deal with Yahoo “moved at a rocket pace” during “a weekend of frenzied dealmaking” after Hulu passed, with everything getting finalized just hours before the deadline.
- The sticking point with Hulu was the money, which wasn’t a issue for Yahoo. The entire next season is budgeted for the same $2 million per episode it was at NBC.
- The main cast is back, at least for a solid chunk of the season, but John Oliver and Jonathan Banks have new gigs that are keeping them busy.
- The episodes will be released weekly, once Dan Harmon and Chris McKenna and crew can turn them around (they start writing next month), and will be available for free via the Yahoo Screen app, which is apparently a thing you will need to get familiar with.
- Not Community-related, but according the the TV Guide story there was actually a deal in place with USA way back when to save Happy Endings “until a last-minute snag pulled the plug.” And now I’m livid all over again.
There’s plenty more in the story if you want to go check it out. This is all so weird. A search engine is making a TV show. Better this than The Ask Jeeves Variety Hour, I guess.