That’s not the exact question posed by Time magazine in their profile of the amazing social-media disappearing act of Donald Glover, but it certainly suggests that something is not quite right with Community’s Glover these days. In fact, there may be more to the reason that he’s leaving the sitcom midway through next season than we’re being led to believe. Indeed, the guy who once saturated social media has all but disappeared, save for releasing one track from his forthcoming Childish Gambino album last week. Why? Where’d he go?
It certainly could be that Time is unnecessarily setting off alarm bells, but their coverage of his social media disappearance did raise an eyebrow or two.
From Time’s Eric Dodds:
That’s what made it so curious when — earlier this year — he suddenly, and without explanation, withdrew from social media. Updates to his website slowed to a crawl before it became a landing page for Royalty. It now has just the title of the website at the top of the page and a blank text box in which you’re able to enter an email address. All previous entries have been deleted. Glover’s beloved Twitter account grew increasingly esoteric before being scrubbed entirely earlier this year. Earlier photos from his Instagram account were also deleted. And just like that, Donald Glover, Internet darling, had effectively disappeared from the medium that had won him his rabid following.
These developments seem all the stranger given Glover’s previous ubiquity and his relentless pursuit of so many opportunities that were set before him. “You don’t get to where all my heroes were without giving up a part of who you are,” he told the Voice in 2011. “Right now, I refuse to even have a dog. No girlfriend. I don’t want anything tying me down. I want to be everywhere. I don’t see a limit for me. I want to do everything.” That same profile described how even three hours of sleep in a night was a lucky break for Glover. So maybe that seemingly endless pursuit of “everything” helps explain Glover’s drastic shift in the last year.
Anyone can burn out, and it’s especially true for those who push themselves to their limits mentally and physically every day for as long as Glover has. Or maybe there’s another reason—or reasons—entirely. In any case, the decision to do whatever possible to erase Glover’s earlier Internet footprint is a curious one.
It’s also curious and accurate to note that, as Time suggests, though “there’s been widespread speculation that the reason Glover is leaving Community is to focus more on his hip-hop career, there’s been no confirmation from Glover himself.”
I actually hadn’t realized that Glover didn’t specifically say that he was leaving to pursue his musical career, and it is certainly odd that Glover hasn’t really addressed his departure publicly. What’s going on with the guy? Maybe he is burnt out, or maybe he’s laying low in order to make a dramatic reappearance. Maybe he’s moonlighting as a crime fighter, or maybe he just lost all faith in social media when it failed to get him the Spider-man gig. Maybe his whole brain is crying. LET’S SPECULATE WILDLY AND IRRESPONSIBLY.