We’ve just heard the best news since Community got renewed for a 4th season—it might get a 5th! For reals! The entertainment chairman at NBC recently said that it could “absolutely” get a 5th season, adding that he’d “love nothing more than to see the show continue.” While this isn’t a certainty, it’s enough to make fans of the show break into spontaneous interpretive dance! So, in celebration, to prep you for the Feb. 7th premiere, and for those very deprived individuals who remain unfamiliar with one of TV’s most innovative sitcoms, we give you: a crash course on Community!
Study group intro!
This show is many things, but, above all, it’s about the unique awesomeness that is formed when different, uncool, or aloof individuals bond. It takes place at the craziest community college ever, is obsessed with pop culture, and is incredibly self-aware. The main characters are waaaay different, yet they form the perfect study group: there’s Jeff, the leader (and failed lawyer,) Abed, the pop culture-obsessed future filmmaker, Troy, a former high school football star, Britta, the sometimes psych major, Pierce, the racist old windbag, Shirley, the kind, religious, middle-aged woman who repeatedly corrects Pierce, and Annie, the pert bookworm with OCD.
Troy and Abed are the bestest besties ever!
Two of TV’s most endearing, loud and proud geeks, the evolution of their best pal-dom has been nothing short of fabulous. Whether filming their morning talk show, comparing candy corn to tiny traffic cones, or reveling in their pop culture obsessiveness, these two are the heart and soul of this show.
The romantic dynamics...
In the beginning, Annie was crushing on Troy, while Jeff and Britta had a thing for each other. But then Jeff and Annie developed feelings for each other after kissing several times, but Jeff still kinda likes Britta, who kinda sorta might like Troy now, and Abed and Annie bonded when she entered his Dreamatorium. Got all that?
Abed Nadir is a secret badass.
He’s wafer thin and tipping the scales at 130 lbs., but don’t underestimate Abed. He has an evil doppelganger from the darkest timeline (more on that later) who wreaks havoc and mutters “cruelcruelcruel” in place of his trademark “coolcoolcool.” Another alter-ego? Inspector Spacetime, a hero from one of his favorite shows (and a nod to Doctor Who). When DVD’s go missing, and the police are zero help, he dons a Batman mask and speaks in a tone that would make Christian Bale pale. Oh, and he also has a room in his and Troy’s apartment called the Dreamatorium, where anything is possible. OK, so maybe Abed’s not a secret badass...he just...is.
The supporting players are aces.
Benjamin Franklin Chang and Dean Pelton, specifically, are two of Community’s stand-outs. Chang (Ken Jeong) has gone from Spanish teacher to security guard to insane dictator who almost destroyed the school. Dean Pelton, (Jim Rash) the man in charge, is infatuated with Jeff, and is prone to dressing up as a Brazilian carnival dancer or Lady Gaga. Seriously, you should check out a few of his best looks here. But he’s no gimmick; he has helped the students on several occasions and has become a beloved member of the group.
There are alternate realities. And timelines.
That’s right. Each 30-minute episode can contain endless genre mash-ups. There have been Claymation episodes, 8 bit episodes, episodes where the timelines and realities change when different characters go to the door to get the pizza... the list goes on. Every week’s episode is like a present waiting to be unwrapped, and, most likely, you’ll never guess what’s inside the box!
Later, Chevy Chase!
Last year, Chase announced his pending departure. Which is OK; his character, Pierce, has become the only frequently off-putting character on the show. Chase and former showrunner, Dan Harmon, got into several arguments, public and private, and it was clear the dynamic was strained. So he’s leaving. Bon voyage, Pierce.
The show has a very vocal, fervent fan base that adopted the above handle to express their desire for how much Community they wanted when the cult hit didn’t receive quality treatment from NBC. They want at least six seasons. And maybe a movie? And who knows? Maybe there’s hope!
What are your favorite Community moments?