The showrunner critiques the NBC comedy's fourth season and the studio's treatment of writers
There is no love lost between Dan Harmon and Sony Television – even after they rehired him for the upcoming fifth season of NBC's "Community."
"There's a system in place that's winning [and] because I would've had too much leverage, too much power, too much salary — as would a lot of writers coming into Season 4 — so they just flushed us," he said of his firing after Season 3 during his recently taped podcast, "Harmontown."
Sony TV representatives declined to comment for this article.
Harmon was let go amid low ratings, feuding with Chevy Chase (who left last season) and a reputation for running late on scripts. With new showrunners David Guarascio and Moses Port, the show focused more on relationships between the characters and took on a more traditional sitcom structure.
As the show's creator, Harmon had always known the long term plan for the comedy. He had been very upfront about where the show would go in its fourth season. But without him, Season 5's direction was probably less clear.
Apparently, the podcast was taped a day before he returned to work on the show and after he finally watched Season 4. He calls it "not my cup of tea," adding "it's very much sort of an impression and an unflattering one."
Also read: Dan Harmon Says 'I'm Back' on 'Community'
He doesn't blame his replacements for messing with his vision. "I think they tried their best," he said.
He does seem especially sensitive to the camaraderie among writers, something he believes Sony TV isn't especially concerned about.
"Writers fighting writers is the American dream in the eyes of Sony," he said. "They want creative people rewriting each other, they want creative people replacing each other, they want us interchangeable. They want to think about writing the way they think about the guy on Assembly line 24, who puts the final screw in the fuckin' Playstation. The want to think of us all that way."