Dan Harmon recently conducted an AMA on Reddit, in which he revealed that in the emotionally charged season finale of Community, "Digital Estate Planning," Chevy Chase didn't show up to film a scene that was partially told via an original 8-bit video game. Since it was the last day of shooting, it was their last chance to do the scene, and they lost it. So one Reddit user, Derferman, of /r/hawkthorne, created the scene and made it downloadable for everyone to play out the scene for themselves. Community writer Megan Ganz was positively verklempt and showed it to the cast this morning.
It is a full-on Community-Harmontown lovefest, kids.
Harmon, who proved himself to be an extremely human human being in this AMA, didn't hold back when asked about the Chevy Chase question. Probably not because he no longer runs his show, but because he is Dan Harmon. And while there were no secrets that Harmon and Chase had, ahem, issues towards the end of the third season, the former didn't shy away from providing details about Chase walking off the set and his own disappointment. According to Harmon in the AMA, Chase expressed issues with the quality of the script, that he had problems with the name "Cornelius" (the name of his character's father), and all sorts of things that reminded everyone that Chevy Chase has never been easy to work with. (To his credit, Harmon has never once claimed to be a saint.) A shiny new revelation that did come out of the AMA, however, was that there was a lost scene that would have been great, and the fact that it was lost is a huge bummer. But now, it lives in the form of a fan-made video game.
The game, Journey to the Center of Hawkthorne, has been an ongoing project since the episode aired, but this scene is new, now that a new part of the story has been introduced. And it is making people feel serious feelings. The scene involves Chase's character, Pierce, playing catch with the floating head of his late father, and hearing "That's my boy!" while scoring a thousand points every time he throws the ball. All of this happens while the Britta-bot music from last season's stop-motion Christmas episode plays, a song that causes even more emotional crying events in Community fans. Upon scoring 4,000 points, sad Pierce finally smiles.
Ganz had promised to show the cast and crew the game, and reported back this morning that they loved it. Though she did avoid showing it to Chase ("Didn't want to stir that pot"). Probably for the best.
It might not be a winner in ye olde fashioned ratings. As Harmon put it, "network TV doesn't know the internet exists yet." But Community's internet fan base is alive and well, even with the changing of the guards.