According to a report in the New York Daily News, NBC has decided to renew three of its Thursday night sitcoms, but only for shortened, final seasons.
The three returning shows are Community, 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation. All three have received rave reviews from critics throughout their runs, and cultish support from fans, but none has garnered the kind of viewership that would make NBC want to keep them around. Still, it’s a bit surprising to hear that NBC plans to kill them all off in one fell swoop.
Reportedly, the shows would return as part of this year’s fall lineup, but would only air for a limited number of weeks (probably 13) and then would end for good.
Community has appeared to be in danger of cancellation for nearly a year and rumors of the end of 30 Rock aren’t exactly coming out of left field (star Alec Baldwin has repeatedly hinted at the impeding end of the show in interviews). Parks and Rec is a bit more of a surprise, because the show is still relatively young and firing on all comedic cylinders.
For fans of these shows, the news is bittersweet. While each show will be given the chance to wrap up its storyline in a satisfactory way, Thursday nights on NBC will have a very different feel a year from now.
To replace these comedies, NBC has ordered a number of new sitcoms, including Matthew Perry’s Go On, Anne Heche’s Save Me and Bill Pullman’s 1600 Penn.