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‘Community’ Season 5 Finally Doing Dan Harmon’s Nicolas Cage Episode

Community Season 5 Nicolas Cage Introduction to Teaching
NBC / Lam Yik Fei, Getty Images

A long, long time ago, in a fourth season of ‘Community‘ most of us would prefer to forget, word from Dan Harmon came down that one of his sadly-unrealized ideas for a future episode would have involved an appreciation class for reigning internet king Nicolas Cage. Now, given Dan Harmon’s ‘Community’ season 5 return and its kitchen sink approach, the episode concept has finally been let out of its, uh…cage.

Though you wouldn’t know it to look at the most recent trailer, it seems the latter half of the cult NBC comedy’s two-episode premiere “Introduction to Teaching” will see Abed convincing the Greendale gang to take a class focused on the ‘National Treasure’ actor, whose visage seems to inevitably find its way into every meme on the internet. That would certainly seem to explain this photo from the installment, though how much of Dan Harmon’s original idea for the episode came to fruition remains to be seen.

Back in February after the oft-debated ‘Community’ season 4 premiere, word made the internet rounds of the lost Nicolas Cage episode, as revealed by Harmon himself at “CommuniCon.”

For two seasons we wanted to do an episode where Jeff Winger pretended there was a class called ‘Nicolas Cage Appreciation,’ and then the Dean caught them and as punishment to them he was going to make that a real class and force them to watch all the Nicolas Cage movies in one night.

The thing about Nicolas Cage movies is… unless you’re a total cynical dick, you have to embrace the fact that Nicolas Cage is a pretty good actor. He’s done a lot of weird, dumb movies, but that was supposed to be the point of the episode — that Nicolas Cage is a metaphor for God, or for society, or for the self, or something. It’s like — what is Nicolas Cage? What is he? Is he an idiot? Or a genius? Can you write him off, or is he inexplicably bound to your soul?

Elsewhere, in addition to ‘Arrested Development‘ star David Cross‘ guest turn as the onscreen son of Jonathan Banks, ‘Community’ season 5 will also see ‘Arrested’ creator Mitch Hurwitz guesting as a popular Greendale student, ‘Breaking Bad’ creator Vince Gilligan as “a smooth-talking gold digger,” Nathan Fillion guest starring as a mysterious janitor, ‘Justified”s Walton Goggins as a private investigator, Chris Elliott as Greendale’s estranged founder, Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim as associates of Dean Pelton, along with returns from Brie Larson, LeVar Burton, Rob Corddry and John Oliver’s Professor Duncan.

Well, what say you? Could the execution of one of Harmon’s long-lost ‘Community’ concepts signal a return to form for the Greendale gang? Could Nicolas Cage himself put in a cameo appearance? Watch the cinematic ‘Community’ season 5 trailer again below, and give us your thoughts before the January 2 premiere!

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