I know a lot of people are disappointed that Community is getting a short season that will likely be its last, but I’m happy. It could be worse, it could have not been renewed at all. The ratings certainly aren’t great, NBC is a struggling network, and I’m no TV executive but I’m going to go out on a limb and say you can’t keep a low-rated show around forever, no matter how much a small legion of fans adores it.
I’ve always appreciated how much time NBC gave Chuck, and I feel that way about Community too. Four seasons is more than most shows with these ratings would get, isn’t it?
But let’s focus on the present. Community has 22 episodes this season which means there are three left to air, all next Thursday. (I think I should have a Community party.) I have split feelings on “Curriculum Unavailable”. I loved the episode, but I hate that so much of the final story arc of the season revolves around Chang.
This was a clips show, much like “Paradigms of Human Memory” from season two, but with a darker twist. The flashbacks were meant to reveal things, like just how difficult Abed can be, how ridiculous the classes at Greendale are (“Can You Fry It?” Always!) and, most importantly, just how much love Dean Pelton has for Jeff and the study group.
These memories served to provide a basis for a fake shrink to try and convince the study group that they’d all be at an insane asylum, not a community college, for three years. It was brilliant because it obviously wasn’t true, but it was so easy to portray all of the study groups’ wacky experiences as the antics of seven lunatics. The flashback to the flashback episode? Genius.
Eventually the gang realized what was going on, and they also realized that Abed was right – Dean Pelton loves him, and he’d been replaced by a lookalike. This is definitely some of the wackiest, darkest stuff Community has done, but it’s my jam.
What did you guys think of the episode? And do you have the same bittersweet feelings I do about the show’s renewal?
Favorite quotes and moments:
- I loved how this played on the classic movie twist that the protagonist has been crazy the whole time. It was really well done.
- The 30s black and white movie style paintball tournament.
- “Don’t community colleges usually last two years?”
- Garrett had a deeper voice at the insane asylum.
- Troy, Abed and Annie in the mooooornin’!
- Troy and Abed in the mooooornin’! Niiiiight.
- “The dean has been kidnapped! He’s out there somewhere cold, alone, most likely trying to cobble together a sexy Patty Hearst costume.” – Britta
- Mad Men references! So meta, since Allison Brie also appears on that show.