Community has always had its fair share of meta-commentary and surrealism. That’s what so many love about it. Others think this breaks the fourth wall and makes the show hard to believe and relate to. I’ve never had this problem. The meta-commentary nearly always comes from Abed, a believable character. I’m pretty sure everyone has a friend who is always bringing pop culture into everyday conversations. The surrealism we accept just because it’s so much damn fun.
This episode is great because, in the Abed/Shirley A-story, it acknowledges that meta-commentary can be overdone. Abed’s ABED, the film that is life and is always being filmed, is all about how a devotion to meta-commentary will divide the characters/audience. It’s not until Abed and Shirley strike a balance that everyone is satisfied. I love how much that speaks about the show, as I always have trouble really classifying it. That makes it all the more satisfying, as the hybrid nature of the show pleases all kinds of fans.
The second great facet of this plot line was the continuing perfect handling of religion in this show. I remember being extremely worried at the beginning of the Christmas episode that the show was going to make a conclusion about spirituality. No matter the conclusion, it would have been bad for the show, as any stance would offend somebody (sensitive jerks). But by keeping the focus on the friendships between our 7 group members, Community supported both a lack of spirituality and a devotion to it, as long as everyone’s happy. 2.05 maintained that trend by not actually getting into whether or not Abed was being offensive, or whether or not Shirley was offended at the end of the day. Having the two reconcile the way they did was pretty touching and a great end to the arc. Abed/Shirley plots have been wonderful, and I hope we get many more of them.
The secondary plot this episode was also excellent. I’m a sucker for anything of the Pierce/Jeff variety, and Pierce’s eventual place as a “hipster” (had me laughing hard enough that I couldn’t breath) offered some great humor. Old jokes can get old fast, but they fashion in which this episode used them was perfect. Really, who would complain about seeing more of unruly Leonard?
In total, this was an episode that showed how Community has mastered combining clever and quick humor with heartwarming moments and exploring relationships within a group. Certainly the best episode of the season so far.
Other best moments:
- “Like E.T., Edward Scissorhands, and Marty McFly combined.”
- Dean Pelton going on about the Wrath of Khan during his rapid turn from being against ABED to being for it
- “Abed has broken the internet.”
- Troy’s Jesus Rap. If I remember correctly: “…and tables are pies. Ice cream is everywhere, but never on your thighs!” Especially great for the people who love Childish Gambino.
- The Abedesus costume was simply spectacular.
- Snakes on a Plane shout-out!
- The tag scene wasn’t the best this year, but I still loved it. Annie trying to get in on a Troy/Abed joke for once and failing was hilarious.