It took about two seconds after hearing the cancellation news for the Internet to explode with options for Community‘s non-existent sixth season: Netflix, Hulu, Comedy Central, TBS. Let’s create a Kickstarter for the movie! Let’s just start our own television network to air Community until the end of time!
So what exactly are Community‘s future options? Who knows! Not even Dan Harmon knows! There are the aforementioned possibilities, of course. Netflix seems promising because it saved Arrested Development (with a less-than-stellar season, but hey, at least we got another one, right?), although it doesn’t even have Community available for streaming (at least not in the United States; last summer I learned it was streaming in Panama, which made it easier to continue to avoid the outdoors while on vacation). Hulu, in my opinion, is a better fit for the show (and already has a digital syndication deal that makes it home to every aired Community episode). Plus, I like that Hulu still rolls out its shows week-to-week instead of all in one shot. And don’t forget about Amazon, which could really use Community‘s cult popularity to give its streaming site some attention. (And if Amazon can foot the bill for those HBO shows, why not throw some cash to Sony for a 13-episode season of Community?)
So many possibilities! But let’s not run to Kickstarter as the first one. I love Community, I love Community‘s fans, and I even love most of Kickstarter, but I can easily see how the combination of the three would be unbearable. I’ve also never been on board with the idea of a movie; Community is a television sitcom, and every bit of it works because it’s a television sitcom, not a bloated film.
Sony seems cool with letting the show exist elsewhere; in Dan Harmon’s surprisingly calm and collected Tumblr post, he mentions that “there was brief discussion at the end of the call about the concept of the show living elsewhere,” but Harmon was the one to express an “eh” ambivalence about the whole thing. Maybe Harmon is finally ready to let Community die? That’s also a possibility — though not a likely one. I’m sure once the initial numbness of the official death of his show wears off, he’ll be ready to examine every possible way to bring it back from the dead.
Now it’s just a waiting game. I do think Community will exist somewhere else, and probably sometime fairly soon — this won’t be a Veronica Mars-like wait — but there’s not much we can do to help it. And if it doesn’t exist elsewhere? That’s fine, too. Community was an unlikely success story — however you want to play it, it’s undeniable that Community was a success story. It had four great seasons and one OK season, a total of 97 episodes (so close to that golden 100-episode mark!), which is a hell of a lot more than we thought it would be (and about 91 episodes more than some NBC sitcoms get). This isn’t the darkest timeline; it’s just a bit dim.