• Thu, Apr 12 2012

Why Is Community Endangering Its Shaky Return With This Stupid Dan Harmon/Chevy Chase Feud?

Chevy Chase Dan Harmon second voicemail Community feud why

Just when we thought that everyone had made nice in the off-camera Community feud that’s been going on for the past few weeks, another shot gets fired. A second voicemail from Chevy Chase has been leaked, this one more of a personal attack than the first. It follows a voicemail that creator Dan Harmon played at a comedy club months ago, which went viral and only added to Harmon’s tweets last February where he called out Chase for being a dick.

But it may not have been Harmon who leaked this second voicemail, though he was the seeming victim of Chase’s frustration yet again. Celebuzz dug up the audio and reported that Harmon played the voicemail (from March 2011) in front of a room of “stunned” executives who were unsure if this were a joke or not. So even if he’s not the one who put it online a year later, it’s clear that he didn’t have a lot of respect for one of his stars then.

What’s upsetting is that it really seemed as if Harmon and Chase had put this behind them. Harmon especially, after he posted an emotional apology to his Tumblr last week where he spared himself no criticism in the release of the first voicemail:

It was in that venue, months ago, that I made the horrible, childish, self-obsessed, unaware, naive and unprofessional decision to play someone’s voicemail to me. He didn’t intend for 150 people to listen and giggle at it, and I didn’t intend for millions of people to read angry reports about it. I was doing what I always do, and always get in trouble for doing, and always pay a steep price for doing. I was thinking about myself and I was thinking about making people laugh.

To think that he would go ahead and leak the second voicemail would indicate that his apology wasn’t genuine at all. So maybe it was an assistant or even an executive who did it for some petty or shrewd reason. Honestly, it doesn’t help us to hear it. It’s difficult to know which side to take. At first it was easy to blame Chevy Chase, who is notoriously hard to work with anyway, for simply not “getting” the humor and camaraderie that has drawn in so many Community fans.

But in the second voicemail (embedded above), Chase calls Harmon because he has a problem with the creator’s choices in which jokes to cut and which plotlines to pursue. In some ways he comes across as crotchety, especially when he says, “This is not my kind of comedy.” But if you consider the next thing he says, he sounds like an actor who is truly at a loss: “I thought you hired me for what I can do that’s funny. You’ve got to give me some range.”

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