Human beings rejoice: the intricate misadventures of Greendale Community College's strangest clique may not be over yet. Community, Dan Harmon's critically beloved and nearly viewer-free sitcom, may yet get a reprieve courtesy of streaming service Hulu, which would eliminate the historical problem of its new episodes constantly running opposite the most popular sitcom on television, CBS's The Big Bang Theory.
Harmon, who also has a new project in the form of Adult Swim's Rick & Morty (which occasionally outdid Community in the ratings department, despite airing late at night on basic cable) tweeted out condolences when the show was canceled the Friday before NBC's upfront.
Twitter isn't big enough to hold my condolences and more importantly my gratitude to the best fans, cast and crew in TV history. Excelsior.— Dan Harmon (@danharmon) May 9, 2014
The writer/creator blogged later that he would go with whatever Sony eventually found for the show, whether that was a place on a new network or a place on the shelf. "I said 'eh' on a Friday afternoon, I will change it to a 'sure, let’s talk' on Monday morning and Sony can do their thing. I’m not going to be the guy that recancels canceled Community."
When we talked to Harmon last year before Rick & Morty hit Adult Swim, he was similarly humble about what he felt he owed not just the show's nutty fan following, but the writers who flocked to the series when he was reinstated as showrunner: "I was always the guy who had to tap his glass with a fork in the middle of a conversation and say how much more important [the show] was than they thought," he said. "[Now], I struggle with unworthiness relative to the people who are underneath me. I feel like the reason I have to go work hard is not because of the audience, first and foremost, but because of these kids who think this is the best thing in the world to work on."
It's hard to say whether or not a run on Hulu would mean a lower-cost production; the streaming service certainly isn't the size of TV behemoth NBCUniversal (though it is part-owned by that company!), but it is definitely on the market for high-profile originals. The show would seem to be a good fit for the network in much the same way that the un-cancelation of Arrested Development generated a lot of advance buzz for Netflix. And, of course, it would mean a lot more money for Sony, which has already sold the series into syndication on Comedy Central (that deal might be complicated by the switch to a new network, though).