Donald Glover To Spend Less Time at Greendale on New Season of ‘Community’

By July 8, 2013

Fans of Dan Harmon’s weird, hilarious, and often-surprisingly-heartfelt NBC series “Community” had to endure a rough patch last year during which the creator/showrunner was fired from his own show. He was replaced by two other dudes who tried (and occasionally succeeded, albeit in brief moments) to make the show as charming and funny as it once was, but let’s face it – season 4 was definitely part of “the darkest timeline.” And even though Harmon has strangely and miraculously been rehired to take the reins of his series once more (hooray!), we’re now hearing news that takes us into another downward drop on this insane “Community” roller coaster.

Vulture is reporting that fan favorite Donald Glover, who plays the character Troy Barnes, will only be appearing in five of the scheduled 13 episodes for the upcoming fifth season. The reason? The multi-talented writer/producer/actor reportedly wants to concentrate more on his musical career, rapping under the alias Childish Gambino. (He was signed to Glassnote Records in 2011 but has only released one label-produced album so far.)

This is sad news for diehard fans who stuck with “Community” during its turbulent fourth season, as Glover’s presence – especially when paired with co-star Danny Pudi – is one of the best parts of the show; seeing Harmon use Troy to his full potential upon his triumphant return was one of this writer’s most anticipated elements of the new season, but now we’ll presumably only see him appear in a minimal number of storylines thanks to his limited involvement.

But for the Childish Gambino fans out there – myself included – this is great news. It’s been too long since we’ve heard legit music from the artist (his mixtape ROYALTY shouldn’t count, because it was awful), and giving him more time to write and produce new music is an excellent thing for those who see him as an up-and-coming force in the hip hop world. Selfishly, the way I’m looking at this whole thing is: if his new album is amazing, then his absence from “Community” will be at least partially justified. But I want to hear from you, “Community” fans (if there are any of you left): what do you think about Glover’s limited involvement in season 5? What will Abed do without his best buddy Troy? Sound off below.

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Ben is a writer living in Los Angeles, California. His work has been featured at,,,, and many more sites across the web. Some of his favorite movies include The Rocketeer, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Tombstone, Lucky Number Slevin, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Collateral, Double Indemnity, Back to the Future and The Prestige. Follow him on Twitter: @BenPears.