15 Trivia Tidbits About ‘Community’

The cast and crew that brought our favorite community-college students to life went through a lot of creative hoops to make us laugh
15 Trivia Tidbits About ‘Community’

There are a lot of things we already know about the sitcom featuring a study group whod rather re-enact movies and build blanket forts than do any actual studying. We know that the show is Dan Harmons semi-autobiographical creation, and we know all of the sitcoms best Easter eggs and background jokes, from the Beetlejuice gag to the hidden Amy Poehler stock photo. Did you know, however, that Parker Posey couldve been a professor, or that Ben Chang would likely not have existed as a character if it wasnt for Knocked Up

Here are some trivia tidbits that may or may not surprise you, depending on how much youre into blanket forts...

Dan Harmon Wanted More John Oliver

In an interview with Uproxx, Harmon said that, following Donald Glovers departure from the show in Season Five, he initially envisioned turning Joel McHale and John Olivers characters into Harold Ramis and Bill Murray's duo in Stripes. Unfortunately, Oliver couldnt do every episode, and thats how Jonathan Banks character Buzz Hickey became tight with the study group instead.

Parker Posey Almost Featured as a Professor

Harmon once said that hed floated an idea of getting the hilarious Posey to guest star as a film professor who pulls a Mrs. Robinson on Abed. He did not elaborate on why such a glorious idea didnt pan out.

Harmon Called Pierce Hawthorne the Eric Cartman of Community

During an interview with OnMilwaukee, Harmon said that he always wanted to make Chevy Chases character more complex and antagonistic but that the network didnt like to hear the word dark. I got more confident as we got more laissez-faire treatment from the network, Harmon said following Season Two. Now, he (Pierce) is our Eric Cartman from South Park or our Archie Bunker. The writers need that. I know some people are put off by that, but we like to make sure every episode of Community is its own single entity, a story with a beginning, a middle and an end. Villains are really important to that.

Troy Barnes Wrote a Comic Book

As part of the first season's DVD set, Harmon created a six-page Kickpuncher comic book from the mind of Troy. It features the whole gang, as well as Troy and Abeds beloved Kickpuncher, obviously.

The Actors Geeked Out Over the ‘Law & Order’ Episode

Not only did Yvette Nicole Brown and Jim Rash tell Collider that it was their favorite episode of Season Three, but Brown also elaborated on the entire casts excitement during the table read: When we were doing the table read, cause all of us are nerds who all love Lost and Law & Order, every time the chung, chung was said, everybody in the room wanted to be the first one to get it out because we were all so geeked.

The Sweet Scene Between Pierce and Abed We Didn t Get

At the end of the Digital Estate Planning episode — where they all turn into video game characters to help Pierce get his inheritance — there was supposed to be a very special tag. In it, we wouldve seen Abed give Pierce a thumb drive featuring Pierces avatar throwing a baseball at his dads head, to which his dad replies, Great job, son! After watching the mini-game, Pierce wouldve turned to Abed and hugged him. Unfortunately, the difficult Chevy Chase didnt want to shoot the scene that day and left the set. It was the last day of the shoot, resulting in the emotional scene being lost.

Knocked Up Inspired Dan Harmon to Write Ben Chang

Actor Ken Jeong said in the showoral history that Judd Apatow put an outtake of his character being particularly wild in Knocked Up online, and it went viral. Dan loved that scene and wrote Señor Chang with me in mind, Jeong explained. I signed on for at least five episodes, then The Hangover came out, and my profile was instantly raised. NBC asked if Id like to be a series regular.

Ray Liotta Almost Starred in the Show

Yep, it turns out that the late actor was up for the role of Buzz Hickey from Season Five on out. Harmon reportedly wanted Liotta to play the role that was inspired by the Goodfellas actor himself, but Liotta ultimately turned it down.

Harmon Learned About His Own Place on the Neurodevelopment Spectrum While Creating Abed

Harmon said that after learning that folks with Aspergers were relating to Abed and loving his character, he wanted to know more about the autism spectrum because, in his own words, he didnt want to let these people down, ever. Through his research, he discovered that he had a lot in common with people whove been diagnosed with Aspergers, realizing that he was more like Abed Nadir than Jeff Winger (who he originally thought was a mirror of him).

The ‘Election’ Connection

Annie Edison was based on Tracy Flick from the 1999 black comedy ElectionHarmon straight up called Annie a "rip-off" of Flick but said that throughout the shows run, Alison Brie turned the character into something more, making Annie her own.

One of the Show s Best Episodes Was Nominated for a Hugo Award

Writer Chris McKenna received nominations for an Emmy and a coveted Hugo Award for one of the shows best (if not the best) episodes, Remedial Chaos Theory. Its the one where the study group throws a die, creating multiple alternate timelines and the famous "Donald Glover walking into an apartment on fire" meme.

Harmon Wanted Richard Ayoade for a Guest Character

Ayoade directed the episode modeled after My Dinner with Andre, and Harmon revealed during a Reddit AMA that he really wanted to bring Ayoade back as Abeds new friend in the Inspector Spacetime convention episode. However, the role was ultimately portrayed by Matt Lucas because the episode happened in Season Four — the one where Harmon wasnt there.

Yvette Nicole Brown Came Up With Her Catchphrase

Shirley Bennett’s oft-said line, That’s nice, wasn’t in the script. As Brown told The Independent: In the pilot, Joel did something I liked, I happened to say it, and it ended up in the show. We just started throwing it in whenever I felt like Shirley would think something was nice.

The Final Season Was Filmed in a Basement

For Season Six, the show moved from Paramount to CBS Radford Studios, where they shot the sitcom in the basement underneath the set of Parks and Recreation. Alison Brie told Dax Shepard on his podcast that pillars were going through the set from above and that they had to write in the whole Greendale’s under construction bit into the scripts because of it.

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