Community Wasn't Dan Harmon's First Brush With Behind-The-Scenes Conflict

"Six seasons and a movie." What began as a simple throwaway line morphed into a battle cry for "Community" fans amid multiple threats of cancellation. Eventually, when the show's sixth and final season ended, a triumphant "#andamovie" titlecard appeared onscreen — and fans have been asking creator Dan Harmon if that movie is in the works ever since.

But by the time the final season had rolled around, the once-robust ensemble cast was looking a little bare — and despite the show's wholesome name, it wasn't exactly a secret that behind-the-scenes was filled with conflict. For better or for worse, most of the show's main conflicts seemed to center around Harmon. Eventually, things got so bad that he was even cut from his own show. But while the blowouts surrounding "Community" got tons of, well, community attention, they were far from Harmon's first experience with conflict.

Always a fighter

Even outside of "Community," Harmon has managed to amass a reputation as someone who will unapologetically say (and in many cases, do) whatever he wants. Unsurprisingly, he's become a polarizing figure — and one who frequently finds himself in the midst of conflicts.

Yet despite the fact that Harmon was kicked off "Community" in season 4 and conversations about cancel culture have become all the more common in today's entertainment landscape, the contentious showrunner revealed that he thinks his loud voice is a bigger fit in today's world than in the past. Harmon shed some light on the matter in an interview with That Shelf:

"I've been getting in trouble for as long as there's been a way to get in trouble, and I've been redeeming myself for as long as I've been able to redeem myself. I think back in 1989, I was patently unemployable. ... Someone would have heard something I said at a party in those days when you couldn't be as open with your voice, and then that would be it for me."

In other words, Harmon's big personality would've made conflict all the more common in the '80s — and in his opinion, the culture at the time made damage control all the more difficult.

Modern day conflicts aren't a walk in the park, either

Of course, while Harmon may have found that '80s conflicts were more difficult to wrangle damage control for, his modern-day conflicts have led to a bit of a negative reputation, too.

Throughout his time on "Community," Harmon had no shortage of problems. Most notably, his feud with Chevy Chase began over creative differences but quickly snowballed into hostility — Harmon even encouraged the cast to chant "F*** you Chevy" during the actor's final wrap party.

When you strip away egos and pride, lots of backstage feuds are relatively petty — and forgivable. However, Harmon was no stranger to heavy, serious power plays, either. During his time at "Community," he sexually harassed writer Megan Ganz, later admitting that:

"I was attracted to a writer I had power over because I was a show runner and I knew enough to know that these feelings were bad news."

While Harmon's apology was later accepted by Ganz (and the full apology was even praised as "a masterclass in How to Apologize"), it's hard not to see a pattern when the showrunner has been involved in so many conflicts. That being said, Harmon's got his good moments, too — he even personally stepped in when Yvette Nicole Brown took issue with her script. It seems that the contentious writer may have been right when talking with The Shelf: he's deeply entrenched in a cycle of ruining and redeeming himself.