NBC Benches ‘Community’ Among Lots of Midseason Changes

by | November 14, 2011 at 7:01 PM | Community, TV News

Joel McHale on "Community." (NBC)

Joel McHale on "Community." (NBC)

NBC released their midseason schedule, and, boy, “Community” fans aren’t going to be happy about it.

Among a raft of changes, according to Deadline, the Peacock network has decided to put the critical fave on the shelf starting in January. In its place will air “30 Rock,” with Wednesday’s rookie show “Up All Night” moving to Thursdays at 9:30 pm Eastern. “Whitney” will be paired up with the Chelsea Handler-produced multi-camera show “Are You There, Chelsea?” (“Vodka” was taken out of the title) in the 8 – 9 pm Eastern slot.

Other changes include a full-season pickup of “Harry’s Law,” which will move to Sundays; “Rock Center with Brian Williams” shifts to Wednesdays to make room for “SMASH.” Finally, “Prime Suspect” has been dropped from the schedule, though NBC hasn’t said whether the show is cancelled or not; given the show’s tiny ratings, the prospect that the Maria Bello-starring remake of the British cop series is returning seems small.

This can’t be good news for “Community” fans. The show had been teetering on the brink this season, with only about four million viewers per week, and something was going to have to give when “30 Rock” came back. Fans are taking to Twitter to express their displeasure, but show creator Dan Harmon hasn’t chimed in yet. Of course, a few hundred thousand Twitter followers aren’t going to keep the show going, but at least they can try, right?

Otherwise, it does feel like NBC is making the right move switching “Whitney” and “Up All Night.” The latter show feels more at home in the Thursday single-camera comedy lineup, where “Whitney” never fit. And pairing Whitney Cummings up with fellow caustic stand-up Handler feels like a natural fit.

Watch the latest episode of “Community”:

The midseason schedule:

MONDAYS

8-10 p.m. — “The Voice” (season premiere Sunday, February 5; series resumes February 6)

10-11 p.m. – “SMASH” (beginning February 6)

TUESDAYS

8-10 p.m. — “The Biggest Loser” (beginning January 3)

10-11 p.m. – “Parenthood” (through February 28)

10-11 p.m. – “FASHION STAR” (beginning Tuesday, March 13, 9-11 p.m. ET with two-hour premiere; one-hour broadcasts resume March 20)

WEDNESDAYS

8-8:30 p.m. – “Whitney” (beginning January 11)

8:30-9 p.m. – “ARE YOU THERE, CHELSEA?” (beginning January 11)

9-10 p.m. – “Rock Center with Brian Williams” (beginning February 8.)

10-11 p.m. – “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”

THURSDAYS

8-8:30 p.m. – “30 Rock” (beginning January 12)

8:30-9 p.m. – “Parks and Recreation”

9-9:30 p.m. – “The Office”

9:30-10 p.m. – “Up All Night” (beginning January 12)

10-11 p.m. – “THE FIRM” (two-hour premiere Sunday January 8; Thursday time period premiere January 12)

FRIDAYS

8-9 p.m. – “Who Do You Think You Are?” (beginning February 3)

9-10 p.m. – “Grimm”

10-11 p.m. – “Dateline NBC”

SATURDAYS

8-9 p.m. – “Harry’s Law” (encore broadcasts)

9-10 — “THE FIRM” (encore broadcasts)

10-11 p.m. – “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (encore broadcasts)

SUNDAYS

7-9 p.m. – “Dateline NBC” (beginning January 8.)

8-9 p.m. – “Harry’s Law” (beginning March 4)

9-11 p.m. – “The Celebrity Apprentice” (beginning February 12)

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