Repiloting

10 Jan

Community Season 5

To those who have not caught up with the latest Community this is a warning that from this point onward you should probably stop reading if you don't want anything spoiled.

If you're still reading that either means you have caught up with Community or don't care if it gets spoiled a little.

Final warning!

spoiler alert

Small side note it should be noted that this is the second time I have had to write this after an accidental refresh after finishing. Let this be a lesson to all to save your work consistently. It's not as it was before "The greatest blog post in the world" no this is just a tribute.

Lead up to and the start of Season 5

For those fellow super fans (who isn't one after watching Community?!) you will know that for a brief dark moment, Dan Harmon left the show. That was season 4. While it wasn't terrible it just wasn't quite the same. Although saying that it was no Scrubs season 9 so there's that saving grace.

So entering season 5 everyone including myself expected big things and had a few questions that needed answering.

  • How would the group be brought back together?

  • What would the show look like with out Pierce?

and probably the most heart-breaking question of them all...

  • What would Abed be like after Troy goes and how would his character be leaving the show?

Yes. Massive spoiler! Troy, aka Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino leaves after 5 episodes. I'm preparing a mound of tissues for that fateful episode. For those who have just watched the third episode of the season it was technically the last episode Glover filmed because of the way this season was shot. However he will be in the next 2 episodes.

Season 5 had a series of trailers, posters and social media activity. My favourite has to be this trailer they released in December.

In true Community fashion the trailer imitates the Lord of the Rings' trailers, and prepares fans for what's to come. Points for those who can name all the pop culture references from the episode clips in the trailer!

I have to say this trailer got me quite excited for what is to come in the season ahead. For those who have already watched the first 3 episodes, re-watching this trailer you can already see where some of the clips used have come from.

So without further ado lets have a quick look at these first 3 episodes. Feel free to disagree with my thoughts on it.

They started off the season with a double episode that set up the main story arcs for the season and served as a "repiloting" of the series. Fittingly the first episode is called "Repiloting".

Jeff has seemingly moved on to be a different breed of lawyer but it is quickly revealed that he has failed. A crushed man he is offered one way to redeem himself by his nemesis and one time colleague Alan; take down Greendale and become who he used to be.

He almost goes all the way but as predicted by Abed his better side wins out and he becomes a teacher at Greendale instead. Probably didn't go down that way in the darkest timeline...

Based on this episode, I think there might be a sign that Abed is becoming slightly more normal as although he predicts Jeff becoming a teacher he's also the one who suggests burning the study table.

"I'd like to take this table out back and burn it." - Abed

"Burn it?! Why?" - Britta

"The same reason I never took 'Time     Bandits' back to Blockbuster: Nobody else deserves it." - Abed

table fire

If he was certain Jeff would be coming back why would he suggest doing this? Unless he just wanted a symbol for the study group (and Dan for the season) that this was a second opportunity to get it right. So maybe Abed is losing his uncanny ability to cold read a situation as if he were in a TV show (like that could be true!) or maybe he just wanted a cooler table. Personally I think it's the latter.

The "gas leak" is an element that is introduced to explain last season. Multiple characters make reference to it so that it sticks in audiences minds but at the same time it's made clear that everything can't be dismissed as part of the "gas leak".

"Don't blame it all on a gas-leak year. This is a four-year process. We went in one end as real people and out the other end as mixed-up cartoons." - Jeff

Changnesia is however quickly dismissed as Chang explains how he had been living in the study room. Later it is discovered the college has even rehired him! Ah Greendale...when will you learn?

For those who don't know, the gas leak is a reference to an earlier episode where a zombie outbreak during Halloween is explained away as a gas leak.

In the second episode "Introduction to Teaching", a new character was introduced in the form of Jonathan Banks who plays Professor Hickey; a seasoned teacher at Greendale who shows Jeff how it's done, after the king of cool has trouble adjusting from student to teacher.

This episode however truly made Abed shine as such a weirdly wonderful character, and showed off Danny Pudi's acting skills as he did an amazing Nicolas Cage impression after Abed is posed the question

Is Nicolas Cage good or bad?

In true Abed fashion he goes far beyond the parameters set by the class and watches all the Cage one man can handle. From that he came to a few conclusions about how to judge quality in acting.

“Robert Downey, Jr.: good! Jim Belushi: bad! Van Damme: the good kind of bad. Johnny Depp: the bad kind of good.” -Abed

This was obviously put across in the form of a semipsychotic rant but it was so beautiful. But that wasn't the end. He went further, much further. (Apologies about the volume in this video)

The third episode titled "Basic Intergluteal Nimusmatics" began a storyline that will hopefully continue as the season progresses. Shot in the style of procedural drama "Law & Order" it still managed to inject classic Community comedy through out. The Ass Crack Bandit (a character so far unrevealed) is the focus as he/she goes about doing what Ass Crack Bandits do. Putting coins down unsuspecting ass cracks. The episode ended without us knowing who it was but my suspicions lie with the new professor or Troy.

Star-burns (a character who has previously faked his death) made a shocking return to the series and was thought to be the bandit for a while but was quickly revealed to be a fake

Jeff and Annie also came dangerously close to breaking down the wall they had so carefully built up to preserve their friendship in this episode.

The sad news is also revealed that Pierce is dead. This is not shocking news as Chevy Chase left the show in the previous season but it is still quite a final ending for a character who in an earlier episode in this season appeared as a hologram giving a small hope that he could still be in the show.

The next episode is focused on the death of Pierce which I'm looking forward to as he might have been murdered!

The Return of Dan Harmon

Dan Harmon as I mentioned before left the show for a season before being rehired. There are varying stories as to why he left but the main problem can be linked back to "creative differences" which is quite surprising looking at the awesome show that had been created thus far. Season 4 while not a train wreck obviously felt a little empty with out Dan Harmon guiding the creation.

Entering Season 5 I was not disappointed with what Dan came back with. The references to Scrubs (one of my all time favourite shows)were not lost on me. Hell I could have been Abed in that one scene.

Troy's anger to Zach Braff only being in six episodes "after everything Scrubs did for him" is a fantastic shout out to all the angry/upset fans who heard about him leaving the show. I'm sure however they choose to let him go it will be great. Scratch that it will be awesome. Harmon will be able to give a send off worthy of the character.

It should not be surprising that Harmon chose to kill off the character of Pierce as there is little chance that Chevy Chase will return. What is surprising is that he is allowing an episode to be shot focused on him. But I believe this is just a testament to Dan's professionalism as even though his personal relationship with Chevy was not great he realises that the character was pivotal in the formation of the group and storyline so would need a proper send off.

I believe that Harmon is using not just the first episode as a replioting but possibly the first 5 episodes up until the point of Donald Glover's departure from the show. While setting up the overarching storyline for the coming season he is also using these episodes wisely to salvage what's left from the fourth season and from what we've seen so far he's doing a great job.

I'm quite interested in what he will do with Troy and whether he will kill this character. I think it may be a way to introduce a certain favourite actor of mine...

What I know think is coming later in the series

With the possibility of Troy dying on the table as Donald Glover leaves the show I propose that Nathan Fillion will be introduced as himself on the show (an episode maybe more).

From what I know by following Community on Facebook and Twitter, Fillion will be on the show. I've not looked further into how he will be appearing but does anyone else remember this?

I'm just saying...it's already there.

There is also the fact that Abed who is my favourite character (it's not a secret) is a little bit unstable when change is involved. So the question of how to fix him when Troy is gone is obviously this.

I've just had the best and possibly worse brain wave.

Abed may provide a perfectly logical and down right infallible reason why Firefly cannot and should not come back on the air. Ever.

Hold your screams nerds!! These are just thoughts!

Britta seems a little lost at the minute but as mentioned in the first episode of this season the other characters will be helping her so we should hopefully see old Britta soon.

Shirley I predict will realise she doesn't need a man, become really rich then go off the deep end slightly into a power mad frenzy.

Jeff and Annie are the Ross and Rachel of Community. (Yes I just made a Friends reference about Community. Yes I'm going to go say three smelly cats and pray to Joey for forgiveness.) But lets be honest they are. The will they won't they dynamic had to be reintroduced with Jeff in his new position of power. However I don't think ultimately they will end up together. Britta is made for Jeff. Annie I believe has other things in her future...once a few things change.

Chang is impossible to predict as is the Dean.

This is broadly speaking how I hope the series will go but as always I'm sure I will be surprised.

#SixSeasonsAndAMovie

That's it.

Took a little longer to write as you might know if you noticed my side note at the start.

As always though I will end with a TV quote that I believe sums up my thoughts.

knew it


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Trevor Price

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