Hello, Communies! I've got four of these to cobble together today, so let's skip the chit-chat and get down to it. This roundup covers those reviews that are exclusively about episode 3x22, Introduction to Finality. Other reviews touching on this episode can be found in the roundup devoted to reviews covering all three episodes in one article.
- I think it's safe to say Matt Landesman of The Faster Times liked the episode. He leads off his review by saying, "can safely say, that this has been my favorite season of any TV show I’ve ever watched. It’s been so weird, so unique, and so brilliant, that it’s almost hard to fathom how a show like this can even exist." Speaking specifically to the merits of this episode in particular, he called Jeff's speech at the end his best to date, and the montage that ended the episode "literally the greatest thing I’ve ever seen on TV."
- Luke Gelineau of TV Equals was not as enthusiastic. He was unimpressed by trial storyline: "I felt like it was all very been there, done that. We’ve seen trials on Community before (several times). We’ve seen Jeff come to a moral epiphany and make an inspiring speech." He liked Troy's storyline somewhat more: "Even though we didn’t really know any of the characters there except Troy, I still enjoyed that we were seeing something so different on the show." He liked the Evil Abed storyline most of all. "There were a few people last year who were throwing around Danny Pudi’s name at Emmy season, and I definitely think that tonight’s episode would be the showcase for anybody making that argument," which is a good point, because the Television Academy has historically shown a certain bias toward actors who play more than one role in an episode. He makes a less good point when he suggests that "it’s possible this stuff was all thrown in once the Community writers found out that they’d be renewed." I suppose that's true, in the sense that it's probably not literally impossible to write, record, and edit one minute of television, even if it does comprise six scenes and 16 camera setups, but all the same I think it's more likely this is more or less what they wanted when they recorded the episode back in February.
- Katie Schenkel of CliqueClaquethought the episode was a great ending to what she calls "a tumultuous season of well-written television." She thought the Winger speech "totally worked" and that it "really sums up the entire show: a community is simply individuals coming together and choosing to be good to one another. And a great community can survive practically anything … even the darkest parts of each other." And she liked the way Troy's decision to be the bigger man and do the right thing "(thus proving he is the AC messiah)" not only paralleled the Winger speech but also capped off the way Troy has developed since the first season. She also says that the montage shows Britta moving in with Troy, and I'm not sure I agree with that interpretation, though certainly I think it suggests she'll be spending a certain amount in there, wink wink nudge nudge know what I mean know what I mean.
By the way, what she says in the first line is incorrect: the video game episode was never intended to be the season finale. Per Dan Harmon, it was the last one produced, because they knew it would take longer to finish because of the extensive use of animation, but it was never intended as the season finale. The more you know!
- Matt Richenthal of TV Fanatic called the episode "a pitch-perfect season three finale." He liked seeing all the characters end the episode in a considerably better place than at the start. (All the characters but Annie, that is, who he says is "just so darn cute and hilarious that she can just stay cute and hilarious.") He gave the episode a numeric rating of 4.4 stars out of 5. My opinion is that it just looks weird to have any number other than 0 or 5 after the decimal point when you're dealing with stars, though of course I understand that it's no different than 88 out of 100, which I wouldn't even blink an eye at.
- The Head Geek at GeekFurious thought this was the "lesser" of the three episodes, by which I assume he means the least. He called it a "mostly standard episode" but added that despite that, it "worked as a nice ending to the season." He gave the episode an 87 out of 100. Looking back at the season as a whole, he says it "delivered on more levels than I ever imagined," leading him to declare Community's third season as "THE GREATEST THIRD SEASON OF ALL TIME!" and to give it a numeric rating of 98 out of 100, which he admits doesn't add up given his previous episode by episode ratings, but if you don't like it you can suck it.
- The most interesting thing about the recap by Shannon of The Two Cents Corp. is that she seems to be unaware that #sixseasonsandamovie was a thing prior to its appearance at the end of this episode. "Does that cryptic hashtag mean there’s a movie in the works? I’m intrigued!" Weird.
- Laura Aguirre of ScreenCrave liked the montage, which she thinks Community does well despite montages being "the king of cliches," the reappearance of Evil Abed, and the #sixseasonsandamovie hashtag, but wasn't as fond of Jeff's speech, which she felt covered territory already well-covered by other speeches, and that they killed of Vice Dean Laybourne. She gave it a rating of 8.5 out of 10.
- Robert Canning of IGN TV thought the finale "felt a little out of place." In his opinion, "The First Chang Dynasty" would have been "a great way to being the season to a close," and he wonders if maybe this episode (minus the montage at the end, presumably) would have worked better as the first episode of a fourth season. But with the montage, he thought it just felt anticlimactic. He also felt that the accelerated timeline shown in the last few episodes hurt the flow of the storytelling, especially what with "Digital Estate Planning" there in the middle. He gave it a rating of 7.5 out of 10.
Don't forget to check out the three other review roundups, and thanks for reading!
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