The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. Last night Stephen Colbert gleefully kicked off his week-long celebration of The Hobbit by interviewing Gandalf himself. Watch Sir Ian McKellen get trounced in a vicious game Tolkien trivia, and later admit that “Gandalf is more powerful than Magneto,” in

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‘Community’ Superfans Plan First-Ever CommuniCon

You see, NBC? You see what happens when you deprive Community fans of the Greendale 7 for too long? They take matters into their own hands. Splitsider reports that the show’s fandom has entered the upper echelons of geekdom by launching its very own convention. The first-ever CommuniCon will take place… Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. In case you’re curious, TVLine has the scoop on how Community writers plan to handle Chevy Chase’s departure from the show — including how they might work Pierce into the episodes that haven’t been shot yet.

2. Presented sans commentary: the woman who Lindsay Lohan punched in the eye was a psychic.… Read More

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TV Actors Who Badmouthed Their Own Shows

Hollywood has its share of actors who have regretted accepting roles that were embarrassing, but how bad do things have to get for a star to bad-mouth a project? What about an entire television series? We saw that happen yesterday when Two and a Half Men star Angus T. Jones closed one chapter in his life to start a new one. It seems that Jones has found God, which means he wants nothing to do with the “filth” that is the Chuck Lorre and Lee Aronsohn-created sitcom. Even though Jones became the highest paid child star in television several years ago, he wants to get out of his $350,000 an episode contract so he can “walk with God.” We share more about his kerfuffle with the series after the break, and feature other TV actors who bad-mouthed their own shows. Tell us what names you’d add to the list in the comments section. … Read More

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Where Do ‘Community’ and Chevy Chase Go from Here?

You gotta give NBC this much: they understand how the concept of the “news dump” works. Back in May, the news of Dan Harmon’s unceremonious ousting as Community’s show runner broke late on a Friday evening, when most of the entertainment press had called it a week; similarly, word leaked of Community co-star Chevy Chase’s exit from the show on the night before Thanksgiving. It wasn’t an unexpected move — Chase’s run on the program hasn’t exactly been rainbows and puppy dogs (more on that presently) — but the timing was downright peculiar; this is the kind of thing that usually happens between seasons, and though the finale to the show’s abbreviated, 13-episode fourth season is in the can, at least two episodes remain to be shot, meaning Chase’s Pierce Hawthorne will weirdly disappear for at least part of the year.

Then again, would anybody really notice? Chase’s presence on the show — his first regular television work since the notorious late-night Chevy Chase Show fiasco back in ’93 — was something of a sell point, or at least a curiosity factor, when Community premiered back in 2009. But as the show’s ace ensemble gelled, Chase saw less screen time, which prompted him to grouse in the press, which probably led to even less screen time, as his character’s arc and plotlines began to reflect his own alienation from the show’s cast and crew. Now that he’s gone altogether, where do he and the show go from here? … Read More

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Chevy Chase Is Leaving ‘Community’

We already know that the 13-episode, fourth season of Community will be without show creator Dan Harmon, and according to Deadline, Chevy Chase is also leaving the beloved comedy series — immediately. We probably don’t have to remind you of the ugly feud between Harmon and the comedic actor, which resulted… Read More

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20 Photos of Celebrities Exercising Their Right to Vote

Last week — just like us! — celebrities were weathering Hurricane Sandy. Today, they’re doing something else all regular Americans are (or should be) doing: voting. And since we now live in a “pics or it didn’t happen” culture, everyone from Beyoncé to Tim Gunn to Zooey Deschanel is photographing the process. After the jump, we round up Election Day’s best pictures of famous people in the voting booth, filling out their absentee ballots, and decking themselves out in red, white, and blue for the occasion. … Read More

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Is NBC “Tanking” Its Thursday Night Comedies?

No news is good news when it comes to NBC comedies. Over the summer, the network elected to pull Community from its critically beloved, low-rated Thursday-night lineup. Stripped of its iconoclastic showrunner, Dan Harmon, the series would air an abbreviated 13-episode season on Fridays opposite Whitney. 30 Rock’s final year and Up All Night’s second would also be cut short. Earlier this month we learned that Community would not, in fact, return October 19th. And this week, we got two more bizarre pieces of news: Community Season 4 was set to debut on Canada’s Citytv November 9th (now the Citytv has pushed that date back indefinitely) and Up All Night is taking a hiatus from filming with plans to return as a multi-camera sitcom in April. Then, as if to remind us of how unimportant these shows are to the network, NBC announced it was bumping tonight’s Parks and Recreation, The Office, and Up All Night in order to re-run Monday’s episode of The Voice for those affected by Hurricane Sandy. (In case you missed it, 30 Rock‘s election episode aired last night at 8.)

Maybe we’ve been paying too much attention to Jack Donaghy, but all these sudden changes make us worry that NBC is “tanking” last year’s Thursday night lineup. As strategies for getting rid of shows with tiny but vocal fanbases, inconsistency and neglect seem gentler than sudden cancellation. So, will any of the shows make it through the 2012-13 season intact? … Read More

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10 Unforgettable Zombie Apocalypses in TV History

From surprisingly awesome horror sequels and terrifying artwork to scary movie personality tests, we hope we’ve adequately provided you with a diverse range of activities for this Halloween. And with the day finally upon us, we’re rounding things out with a tried (and sometimes true) classic: the zombie apocalypse. Below we’ve collected some of TV’s greatest spins on the genre, a diverse list of sometimes scary, and often funny (reflexively speaking), episodes which could also double as some entertainment for this evening, or any day really, because zombies, they’re year-round now! Have a favorite TV zombie? Do share! … Read More

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‘Community’ Finally Has a Premiere Date: February 7, 2013

Community fans, have you been following all of today’s totally bizarre news? First, we heard that Canada’s Citytv would be premiering Season 4 next Friday, November 9th. That would have surely meant Canadians would see the new episodes before US viewers — and also that many of the show’s cultish American fans would… Read More

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