Human beings, rejoice! As if there weren’t already reason enough to celebrate on March 17, this year the date will mark the highly anticipated return of “Community.” Fresh off its cancellation from NBC, the show will return for a string of all new episodes on Yahoo’s streaming service.
In a Season 6 promo video (below), cast members Joel McHale, Alison Brie, Danny Pudi, Ken Jeong, Gillian Jacobs, Oscar winner Jim Rash and creator Dan Harmon announce the release date, as well as poke fun at their new home. In July, the show was saved at the very last minute by Yahoo, which managed to confirm negotiations with Sony mere hours before the cast and writers' contracts expired.
“Community” focuses on the students and faculty at the fictional “Greendale” community college, where people from all walks of life come to better themselves – but often fail. While fans of the critically acclaimed-- but Nielsen ratings lacking-- TV show are thrilled that their beloved study group is returning, things might not be quite the same on the new streaming platform.
First of all, there’s no telling how many fans of the show will be willing to make the switch from TV to Yahoo streaming. Luckily, it does have several advantages over its competitors like Hulu Plus and Netflix, the biggest being that Yahoo Screen does not require a paid subscription. Then again, the success/failure of “Community” Season 6 will be hard to measure now that Nielsen ratings aren’t a factor.
“Those numbers felt bad to me… A 0.8 could mean the best day of your life. A 0.7 could mean no donuts,” Harmon said of the stress he felt from Nielsen ratings metrics. According to The Wrap, the show creator recently spoke about Season 6 at a Television Critics Association interview.
Another change fans can expect from Season 6 is for the show to have a slightly different look. Harmon revealed that the change from NBC to Yahoo forced the show to relocate production from Paramount to the CBS Radford Lot. Only time will tell what affect that will have on the show’s general aesthetic.
Finally, the cast of the show will look different as well. In Season 6, Yvette Nicole Brown (Shirley Bennett) will be written off in the first episode. The actress respectfully stepped down from her role to spend more time with her ailing father. Harmon was reportedly fine with her decision and said she’s welcome to return to the show whenever she wants. Still, this leaves the study group down to just four of its original seven members. To help fill the void, Paget Brewster will join the cast as a new series regular. She also appears in the new teaser trailer.
“Community” is no stranger to characters coming and going. Donald Glover’s character (Troy Barnes) was written out of Season 5 when the actor decided to focus on his music career. Chevy Chase’s character (Pierce Hawthorne) was killed off after the actor abruptly left the show due to behind-the-scenes drama.
“Community” will premiere on Yahoo on March 17 with two new episodes. The rest of the season will roll out one new episode every Tuesday.