So NBC is right now deciding which shows they’ll be bringing back next season, with the current word around town being (sadly) that returning comedies like “30 Rock” and “Parks & Recreation” will get short orders, meaning essentially half-season renewals. Bummer. The strategy there is that it will allow the network to pick up more shows in what sounds like a scheduling/marketing nightmare, but good luck to them on that. Anyway, one show that fans are also hoping will get the greenlight is “Community,” whose fervent fanbase hasn’t as yet converted into big time ratings. And if you ask Chevy Chase, the show could be funnier.
Vulture recently squeezed a few awkward minutes out of Chase at the opening night of the Columbia University Film Festival at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, and as usual, he was pretty frank about the show that has seen his career revived. “I’d make it funnier,” Chase said when asked how he would improve the show. “With my brand of humor. I’m not crazy about that character and I’m getting tired of playing him.” But wait, there’s more…
“I just don’t think the writing of that character reflects what I do comedically, and I love the people I work with,” he explained. “They’re all good kids, and they all do very well in their parts. But I don’t think anyone has a sense of what to do with me, so I got to play some gray-haired, biased, bigoted guy. I’ve been too funny in my life to have to play a character who’s…moderately funny.”
Well, you can’t fault the guy for being honest, we suppose, though Chase’s brand of humor hasn’t been popular in a long, long time. But his reputation of being kind of a dick hasn’t helped him out in that department either. And one can’t help but feel that his recent battles with “Community” creator Dan Harmon aren’t helping the situation much. Could “Community” survive with out Chase? Well, yeah, and though he’s probably well off enough that he doesn’t really need the gig, it seems Chase fails to recognize how much of a boost the show has given his profile. But maybe “Karate Dog” is more his style of comedy? Who knows.
Chase’s unhappiness is only one issue the show is facing as Vulture also reveals that producers Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan are leaving the program. They’ve got a big deal over at Fox, and there will be folks able to step into their place, but it’s another note of uncertainty as the show strives for at least one more outing. Will Chase stay? Will “Community” get renewed? Can it be more Chase-esque? We’ll see.