Joel McHale

"It's all going to be OK," Community's new showrunner David Guarascio assured fans at the Comic-Con panel moderated by Michael Schneider of TV Guide Magazine on Friday.

Guarscio had joined the NBC comedy along with Moses Port for the series' upcoming fourth season, filling the shoes of fired showrunner Dan Harmon. Fans were in an uproar over his departure, afraid that no one else would be able to reproduce the unique, irreverent, pop-culture-referencing wackiness that is a hallmark of the series.

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"A couple months ago we were just like you, huge fans of the show," Guarascio said. "And now we're here helping [to keep] it going — the weird wonderful gem that it is, and that's not going to change. Like no other show, [fan interaction] really influences what appears on screen... we talk about what you [the fans] would like on a regular basis. So, thank you."

The show doesn't start production on Season 4 until mid-August, but the new head honchos were able to tease a little of what's to come, including the study group entering their senior year. "It's a very emotional time for people," said Guarascio. "We'll explore some new relationships, one of them might be Dean Pelton and Jeff." He also danced around the question of how the show would continue after graduation: "I think there's a way to be true to the show and have the characters develop organically to have the show keep going even if they're not all in the same place."

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The gang will also go off campus to visit an "Inspector Spacetime" convention — an announcement that caused the Comic-Con crowd to go wild — and the "twisted world" of Pierce's mansion.

And although Joel McHale, who plays the narcissistic Jeff Winger, didn't have any solid information about the upcoming season, he offered up his own fictitious casting announcement. "Eddie Murphy, everybody, will be playing my father. Very exciting. Pluto Nash himself."

The fourth season of Community will premiere on Friday, Oct. 19 at 8:30/7:30c on NBC.