The question of whether NBC would renew two of TV’s best-reviewed but lowest-rated comedies—Parks And Recreation and Community—was one most TV news followers figured would go down to the wire. Instead, NBC, apparently realizing it doesn’t have much of anything else, renewed both today, along with The Office (whose renewal was never in doubt), to the grateful sighs of the tens of demographically desirable dozens who watch Parks And Recreation and Community. Community will enter its third season, Parks And Recreation will enter its fourth, and The Office will enter its eighth. Other Thursday night mainstay, 30 Rock, was renewed for a sixth season late last year. No word still on Outsourced, Perfect Couples, or the many comedies NBC still has on the shelf for this season and has yet to debut. (For now, if you’re a fan, just assume they’re almost certainly canceled, unless NBC gets it in its head to establish a comedy bloc on another night, in which case, Outsourced may get an unlikely pick-up.)
“I am so pleased to renew these three outstanding comedies which are all at the top of their game creatively,” said NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt in a press release. “Along with 30 Rock, they represent the best of what the NBC comedy brand stands for in terms of originality, wit, and sophistication. The Office continues to fire on all cylinders on the most competitive night of television, Parks And Recreation has come into its own this season as the rightful companion to The Office, and Community is one of the freshest comedies on any network and a solid foundation for Thursday night.”
There’s no word on where the shows will air next year, but given NBC’s troubles on every night of the week, it certainly seems likely that all will continue to air on Thursdays, probably in the order they were in earlier this season, which would place Community at 8 p.m., Eastern, followed by 30 Rock, The Office, and Parks And Recreation, in that order. This also should bring Community and Parks And Recreation closer to the number of episodes needed to begin running endless reruns on some cable channel, as Community will have aired 71 episodes and Parks And Recreation will have aired 68 at the end of a traditional 22-episode order. (The magic syndication number is 100 episodes, but many cable networks will take a chance on reruns with just 65, as TBS did in the early days of The Office.) No word on what storylines to expect for the future seasons, but we can only assume that something crazy will happen and wacky complications will ensue.