The return of NBC’s sitcom “Community” last Thursday could only bring one thought to mind: “About time.”
The show’s third season finally returned to the Thursday lineup and took its rightful spot at the 8 p.m. time slot it originally claimed at the show’s debut in 2009.
It was edgy, quirky, hip and soon became a show that was hard to even think about missing on Thursdays. And for new fans, it only takes a few episodes to become addicted.
“Community” is a show based on several friends in a study group, similar to the rag-tag gang of opposites in “The Breakfast Club.”
It was doubtful that anything could save a TV favorite like “Community” from the demise of corporate television programming, and it seemed that the sitcom would most likely end and be forever regarded as a cult-favorite show like “Arrested Development” that was “gone too young.”
After viewers vented heavy resentment toward NBC for pulling the show in late September, audiences banded together on blogs, Facebook and Twitter to voice their anger and confusion with the show’s alleged cancellation.
I’m not sure if complete cancellation was intended when it got pulled at first, but the “Community” community reaction ensured that NBC knew fans wouldn’t idly sit by.
In the delayed return episode from season three, entitled “Urban Matrimony and the Sandwich Arts,” viewers got a rare chance to see the full range of emotions from the characters.
The episode centers around Shirley, played by Yvette Nicole Brown, and the Motown proposal from her “boyfriend,” who is actually her ex-husband that she began to date again during the second season.
Tensions of marriage quickly arise between Shirley and her soon-to-be husband, Andre, a former Cosby kid –– which he occasionally alludes to–– played by Malcolm-Jamal Warner.
The cast of the study group plays purely on opposing characters getting in the most bizarre of situations. For instance, Britta, played by Gillian Jacobs, volunteers to plan Shirley’s wedding — a task that probably shouldn’t be given to someone who is usually the drunkest girl at the party.
As relationship drama continues to rise, Britta keeps drinking, as does Jeff, played by Joel McHale. Britta and Jeff have had always had a tumultuous relationship and adding alcohol into the mix brings out the best — or the worst — in them.
Pierce Hawthorne, played by Chevy Chase, embarks upon some new business ventures, his first being a “automatic security camera that can tell your friends from intruders,” but later Jeff indicates is just “wireless racism” after the device calls Abed “a threat level four.”
Shirley and Pierce later decide to go into business together to open a new sandwich shop in the school cafeteria. This makes for some hiccups in the wedding process, but allows for some quality time with Abed, played by Danny Pudi, and Troy, played by Donald Glover, to “behave normally,” or at least that’s what they think they are doing by following Shirley’s directions.
As they attempt normalcy, the actions and chemistry between the comedic duo are non-stop entertainment. I could watch an entire 23-minute episode of just them sitting on a couch bantering back and forth.
There is no way any fan of “Community” could have been disappointed by this latest episode. Not only is the show back, but it includes all of our favorite characters and situations.
Troy even gets a glimpse of the spider monkey that lives in the college’s air conditioning vents and has been stealing the group’s small objects for the past two years –– including the epic pen from Annie, played by Alison Brie, at the center of the freak-out “bottle episode.”
All in all, this episode was extremely satisfying for someone who has longed for the show; it only leaves me addicted to the characters and storylines even more. Upon the return of Chang, played by “The Hangover’s” Ken Jeong, and Professor Duncan, played by “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’s” Senior British Correspondent, John Oliver, would the show be utterly perfect.
And if they get Betty White back on “Community,” I think I might be able to die happy. Just don’t let this show get the aforementioned “Arrested Development” treatment.
It is way too good to lose.
If you like: “Parks & Recreation,” “Arrested Development,” “Party Down”