Donald Glover, much like his Community character Troy Barnes, is known for being a slightly immature goofball with some serious feelings, and he’s decided to share some of those feelings in an unusual way. The rapper/actor posted a series of photos on his Instagram account Monday, explaining to his fans, followers, and the Internet at large that he has been going through some rough times lately. Through a series of handwritten letters written on hotel stationary, Glover listed out his numerous fears — among them, that his parents won’t live long enough to see his kids, that he’s here for nothing, and that he will turn into Tyrese — as well as revealing the real reason that he chose to leave Community.
Glover’s decision to only appear in five out of 13 episodes for the show’s fifth season was reportedly due to his desire to focus on his music and finish up his album, Because The Internet, for a December release. However, according to Glover, he states that the real reason behind his departure was so that he could do his own thing, writing, “I didn’t leave Community to rap. I don’t wanna rap. I wanted to be on my own.” He also writes in another part of his rant that he is afraid of being hated by Dan Harmon for his choice to leave the show. But Harmon isn’t the only authority figure that Glover takes on in his missive: he also discusses fighting with his record label over the release date of Because The Internet, explaining that even though they warned him against it, Glover felt that dropping his album in December was important because it helped him start the new year, and he wants his fans to be able to experience the same thing.
Despite Glover giving people an insight into a few of his most recent career decisions, the most interesting things he revealed were his confessions that he was worried that he will never be able to outgrow “Bro Rape,” the Derrick Comedy sketch that helped launch his career, and that people think he hates women and his race, as it seems as if Glover is addressing the criticisms he has received about the more problematic aspects of his music and comedy. His Childish Gambino records have been criticized for lyrics that were misogynistic or fetishized Asian women, while people have complained that his comedy routines are offensive and inappropriate in regards to sensitive topics such as rape.
However, what makes his mentioning these fears so important is that the last photo that Glover posted ends the whole thing by telling people that “no matter how bad you f— up, or mistakes you’ve made during the year, your life, your eternity, you’re always allowed to be better. You’re always allowed to grow up. If you want.” Combined with his list of fears, it seems like the world may soon be seeing a more mature Glover. If he really is deciding to take a more grown-up approach towards life, his Instagram posts could be the perfect way to segue into a change in attitude. And since Glover has never been one to spend time discussing his past actions, it would give him something to reference if he decides he doesn’t want to talk about his decision to change. The downside, though, is that he will be under a lot of pressure to demonstrate that he’s growing up through his album and his upcoming FX show, Atlanta.
Of course, the whole thing could simply be Glover experiencing a quarter-life crisis of sorts, and there could be nothing of substance to it. Everybody has gone through a time in their life when they feel helpless and confused, and are unsure of where to go next. Having always been profiecient on social media, Glover’s Instagram posts could just be a way for him to express his feelings so that he can move on — although in a way that even he admits “feels pretentious.” It’s possible that Glover wanted to use these posts in order to let off some steam and let his fans know that even celebrities feel helpless sometimes. And while there will be nothing disappointing in him simply needing to let some things off his chest, and then moving on without changing anything, it would be much more interesting to watch Glover and his career evolve and grow.
Guess we’ll just have to wait for Because The Internet to drop in December in order to find out.