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Is Yahoo Picking up Community a Bold Move or a Fool's Errand?

Will Community get lost in the shuffle?

Formerly of NBC series gets a sixth season on what many say is a convoluted video portal

By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)

As we reported earlier, Yahoo made a bold move to pick up the recently cancelled NBC sitcom “Community,” for its sixth season. The series will be part of Yahoo Screen, a video portal that has a ton of videos including clips from Saturday Night Live, Comedy Central, numerous music videos, and god knows what else. Frankly, it’s a pretty convoluted streaming portal. So the question is, will Community be the first step in making Yahoo screen a credible player against 800 lb. gorillas like Netflix and Amazon Prime? Or will it be lost like a needle in Yahoo’s haystack?


"I am very pleased that Community will be returning for its predestined sixth season on Yahoo. I look forward to bringing our beloved NBC sitcom to a larger audience by moving it online. I vow to dominate our new competition.” – Community creator Dan Harmon

Mostly, on Yahoo Screen, you’ll see a lot of Viacom properties, including Katie Couric News (although I couldn’t find it on the page), Saturday Night LiveComedy Central comedic sketches, and music videos by Vevo.

Clearly, with the acquisition of Community, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer looks to mimic the founding success that Netflix achieved when they got of the map with House of Cards. But when the Kevin Spacey Washington political drama was greenlit, Netflix had already had some success with their first original series “Lilyhammer,” about a mobster in the witness protection program. Netflix had already laid the groundwork for their original series initiative, so I think the comparison of Community with House of Cards (aside from the obvious one) is misplaced.

Community is more Yahoo’s Lilyhammer. A chance to move to the next level for Yahoo Screen, since right now it’s kinda trying to decide if it wants to be Netflix or Youtube. And it may be good for Yahoo, but whether or not it’ll be good for Sony TV, Community and its fans is another story.

It almost didn’t happen… Sony was deep in negotiations with Hulu, but they stalled. With just a few days left before Sony had to release the cast from their contracts, they turned to Yahoo, who was able to come in at the 11th hour and scoop up a deal for a 1- episode series order.

“Yahoo is all about connecting the best creators to the audiences who love their work,” said?Yahoo CMO, Kathy Savitt.?”Community has an incredibly passionate and loyal fan base who have fought hard to keep this amazing show alive. We couldn’t be more excited to work with Dan, Joel, and the entire cast, as well as Sony, to deliver a great Season 6."

The key will be how Yahoo positions it. If it just tosses it into the existing interface, it’s liable to get lost in the shuffle. But if you want to showcase the series, relaunching the portal with a streamlined, redesigned interface would give it the best chance to move forward. And whether it’ll return for a seventh season, or be an experiment that goes wrong, is entirely up to Yahoo. But based on past performance, I’m not all that confidence, that Community fans will get another more than one last great moment in the sun.

The post Is Yahoo Picking up Community a Bold Move or a Fool’s Errand? appeared first on Doddle.