Dan Harmon on Gender Equality in the Writers’ Room: ‘Think of it as a common-sense thing’

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Your best friend/fantasy lover Community’s Dan Harmon’s A.V. Club interview includes a particularly interesting section on the influx of female writers in the show’s second season, a change that the show’s creator was initially…less than thrilled about. Apparently former NBC head of programming Angela Bromstad required Harmon to staff his writers’ room with an equal number of women as men. “I remember going, ‘Are you fucking kidding me?’ to myself. ‘Okay, I got a sitcom, and this is as far as you go,’ because I’ve just been told that half of my staff needs to be a quota hire,” he recalls. However, despite his reticence, Harmon now admits, “From the mouths of bureaucrats come the seeds of great things,” explaining that “I think women are different, and I think having them in the room is crucial to a family comedy, ensemble comedy, television comedy, where half the eyeballs on your show are women.” Even more encouraging, “the male writers across the board, from top to bottom, in their most private moments drinking with me, when they’re fully licensed to be as misogynist, reactive, old-boy-network as they want, all they can say is, ‘This turned out to be a great thing.’” If this isn’t going to make you finish your spec script, I don’t know what is.