Six seasons and a movie? Not quite. But, considering how imperiled Community has been over the past couple of years, this might be the best we can hope for.

On a day in which NBC has renewed multiple older series while picking up a bunch of new pilots, the Community announcement was eagerly anticipated. Most commentary indicated that a season 4 was very likely, but no one was willing to trust such rumors without confirmation.

The announcement, which comes in advance of NBC’s up-front presentation on Monday, means that Community will indeed get a season 4 during the 2012-2013 television season. There are, however, only 13 episodes. This raises the question of whether Community will air in the fall or in the winter/spring.

NBC renews Parenthood and 30 Rock.

The perennially underrated and overlooked comedy series has always been in danger of cancellation, but season 3 marked the most danger yet. After a fall run of low and dropping viewer numbers, NBC removed Community from its winter schedule. No date was initially given for the show’s return.

Community did, however, return in the spring. And, thanks to massive efforts on the Internet, the ratings numbers for the series actually rose for the first time in a season. There has been some drop-off since then, but the numbers have remained decent — decent, at least, for an NBC show airing at 8pm on Thursdays.

The renewal of Community for 13 episodes marks the second such renewal for an NBC comedy. Earlier on Thursday, the network renewed 30 Rock for a 13-episode 7th and final season. The Community announcement for a shortened season did not include any information about whether the comedy had a chance of renewal after season 4.

It’s not quite six-seasons-and-a-movie level news. But it’s something! And with Community, something is definitely better than nothing.

(Images courtesy of NBC)

Laurel Brown

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

Laurel grew up in Mamaroneck, NY, Grosse Pointe, MI and Bellevue WA. She then went on to live in places like Boston, Tucson, Houston, Wales, Tanzania, Prince Edward Island and New York City before heading back to Seattle. Ever since early childhood, when she became addicted to The Muppet Show, Laurel has watched far too much TV. Current favorites include ChuckModern FamilySupernaturalMad Men and Community. Laurel received a BA in Astrophysics (yes, that is possible) from Colgate University and a PhD in Middle Eastern Studies and History of Science from Columbia University before she realized that television is much better than studying.