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Episode Discussion 5.11, "G.I. Jeff"

511epdiscussion


THE STUDY GROUP GETS ‘ANIMATED’ IN THE VEIN OF THE 1980S ‘G.I. JOE’ SERIES - Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Yvette Nicole Brown, Danny Pudi, Alison Brie, Jim Rash, Ken Jeong, Jonathan Banks and John Oliver star.
Title: Community At The Moves
Fandom: Community + Multiple Movies
Song & Artist: Medicine by Broken Bells
Description: DO YOU LIKE COMMUNITY? DO YOU LIKE MOVIES? Well then this video is... Actually it's pretty all over the place and I really don't know what I was doing and just...forgive me? I thought it would be fun to highlight a bunch of the Homage/Parody stuff they do frequently in Community. I even came up with a new word for it! #ExplainABrag
This is what I get when I spend way too much time re-watching Community, reading the Community Wiki, and recreating Fonts.


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Good afternoon, Communies! It is I, John the Ranger, here to track down reviews of last night's new Community episode. Huzzah! Adventure!

Mat Carter, cartermatt.com:
there were also still plenty of laughs and, more so than that, plenty of imagination. There are some “Community” episodes that you really need to watch more than once to fully understand, and this is one of them. (A-)

Tim Surette, tv.com:
Did it triumph? In a word, no; it was fine, not amazing. But even if I'd never seen the O.G. version, I'd still be saying that "Advanced Advanced Dungeons & Dragons" was an okay-but-not-great episode of Community, as it relied on gimmick over substance.

Britt Hayes, ScreenCrush:
Jonathan Banks is really settling into the role of Hickey, and this week gives him a chance to really show how comfortable he’s gotten, using the former cop skills of his character along with his gruff demeanor to play the game rather well. I’m also consistently pleased with how that gruffness is translated into the world of ‘Community’ — someone with Banks’ natural inflection and tone could be so easily limited and typecast, but there’s so many shades to what he does, and he finds a playfulness and quirkiness that has really sewn itself into the fabric of the study group almost seamlessly.

Alan Sepinwall, HitFix:
Comedy-wise, though, only a couple of the gags could be reasonably held up against the ones that were overflowing in the first: Buzz interrogating a pair of hobgoblins (both played by Abed) and masterfully turning one against the other like the nasty cop he used to be, and Dean Pelton getting his hug from Jeff no matter the cost.

Todd VanDerWerff, A.V. Club:
I liked the idea that having the two of them in the same room—even if they couldn’t stand each other—talking through their issues via the proxy of the game was almost as good as an actual reconciliation. But it also felt incredibly rushed, as if the episode wanted to make sure it wrapped everything up in time. (B+)

Polar Bears Watch TV:
Thankfully, “Advanced Advanced Dungeons and Dragons” is able to maintain a sense of uniqueness as it delivers a flawed, yet entertaining, 21 minutes. (B)

Brian Collins, Badass Digest:
There's a fun bit where Hickey (once he starts figuring the game out) interrogates Abed's troll NPC, and the big showdown is kind of funny since we just see a montage of McHale, Brie, Jacobs etc making funny gestures and shouting nonsense while LOTR style music pumps over the soundtrack, but scattered moments aren't enough to overcome the fact that the episode has no reason to exist beyond "let's do D&D again."

Joe Matar, Den of Geek:
I admire the episode for changing up the format, but, for reasons already discussed, the new premise ultimately doesn’t carry a lot of dramatic heft with it and, well, what can I say? The best moments in this episode are never going to stand up to Pierce towering over Fat Neil and declaring, “Baste your chubby cheeks in tears of gravy.”

Jared Russo, GeekBinge:
I thought it did manage to maintain the creativity of the first episode while staying consistent with the hot streak this season has been on. It was a bit higher quality in terms of the game being played, but didn’t quite tug at my heart strings like the Fat Neil story did. (10/10)

Gabrielle Moss, TV Fanatic:
But while one of Community's greatest pleasures is simply watching the characters talk to each other, it helps when something - anything - else happens on an episode. Though there were some wonderful jokes, and Abed's performance as two hobgoblins was a tour de force achievement in field of Community lunacy, by the end of the show, nothing had really happened: no lessons had really learned and nothing had really changed. (4.6/5)

Eric Goldman, IGN:
It was the right call to not try to emulate something as heavy and big as Neil's suicidal thoughts, but it still felt like Buzz and his son’s reconciliation felt a bit undercooked at the end - there wasn’t a big enough moment to really help us see the shift that Jeff and the others saw and it felt like things wrapped up because it was time to wrap them up. (8.5/10)

Sarah Shachat, ScreenCrave:
The one thing that keeps this episode down is that Hickey and his son’s issues are pretty generic. They weren’t expanded on or exploited by the episode’s conceits. Cross is an actor who can carry that emotional load and be as funny. It was a shame he didn’t get to do both. (8/10)

Spenser Milo and Jacob Harrington, Based on Nothing:
The nice, personal story of Hickey’s brings the episode’s stakes to a moderate level where they’re believable just so we understand why our study group characters are involved in this nonsense. (SM) Maybe I would have preferred Dungeons and Dragons to stay out, and maybe I am weary of Community retreading too much old ground — but this episode was solid enough to beat those worries of mine back. (JH)

Jennifer Marie, Just About Write:
I’ll admit: the ending/resolution of “Advanced Advanced Dungeons & Dragons” felt a bit understated for me. While I do appreciate that the show didn’t wrap up the episode exactly like it did with the first installment, I felt slightly befuddled by how quickly everything ended. The “revelation” and Winger speech by Jeff seemed to be like that of a fog on a sunny morning – prevalent enough to see and understand, but still not completely there.

George Prax. Better With Popcorm:
What a journey it was too. The best part was most certainly Hickey interrogating Abed's two goblin characters, which is wrong on so many levels. All of it was great. A worthy sequel, both in theme and content, to one of the best Community episodes ever. "Advanced Advanced Dungeons & Dragons" gets 9.5 dingleberries out of 10.

Nick O'Malley, masslive.com:
The funniest sequence of the episode was easily Prof. Hickey's interrogation of the two goblins, as played by Abed. It's a great riff on the usual "separate two suspects and get them to turn on each other" shtick.

Lauren Stern, Pop-Break:
One thing I really was a tad disappointed with was Abed being the Dungeon Master. I kind of wish Harmon gave this role to someone else. I understand that this is really Abed’s forte, but I kind of felt his passion overshadowed Hank and Hickey reconciling.

Randy Dankievitch, Sound on Sight:
It has its heart in the right place, but “Advanced Advanced” is never really able to get off the ground, sputtering along with a perfectly competent, unexciting return to the fantastical, dice-laden world of Dungeons & Dragons.

Nick Hogan, TV Overmind:
This episode is one of those that you’d have to watch over and over again to get everything, but that’s what I love about Community. No matter how much you re-watch an episode, you always find something new.

Sean Gandert, Paste:
“Advanced Advanced Dungeons & Dragons” did such a good job of self-criticism that it feels almost pointless mentioning the elephant in its proverbial room. The episode is a repeat (or sequel, if that’s what you want to call it), and Community, for all its strengths, doesn’t always repeat itself well. That being said, it really didn’t matter that we’ve seen this format before, as the sequel fully lived up to the original.

There's no new episode nexte last week in March is when Greendale has its spring break. Thanks for reading, and see you in April!
 
510epdiscussion


THE STUDY GROUP ORGANIZES A DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS GAME TO HELP PROFESSOR HICKEY REUNITE WITH HIS ESTRANGED SON HANK – DAVID CROSS GUEST STARS – Professor Hickey reveals that his estranged son Hank (guest star David Cross, “Arrested Development”) did not invite him to his grandson’s birthday. The group decides to help father and son reunite through a rousing game of “Dungeons and Dragons.”

RemixRedux

RemixRedux is coming back and they're looking to update the fandom list. Community is one of the fandoms on the chopping block, so if you want to be part of the coolest remix challenge on the 'net (and, really, the original and best) take a minute and check out the post - http://remixers-lounge.livejournal.com/108796.html - and add your vote to the survey.

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Good morning, Communies! I've got a pile of hot textbooks to unload, so let's get down to business.

Matt Carter, cartermatt.com:
It wasn’t the show’s strongest episode ever, nor was it the weakest. It was instead a small, funny story that brought in a few guest stars, and really showed us where the NBC series is now. (B+)

Todd VanDerWerff, A.V. Club
I have a handful of issues with the episode’s treatment of the character of Rachel, but I liked the way that the episode revealed itself to be almost entirely about how Abed feels in the wake of Troy’s departure in this moment. When Abed ventured a tiny, tiny emotional response by telling Rachel that people have been leaving him his whole life, a lot of what the episode was trying to do snapped into place for me, and I felt all the more worried about what will happen when Rachel leaves for her movie career. (B+)

Alan Sepinwall, HitFix:
The rest of "VCR Maintenance and Educational Publishing" was more of a mixed bag. After the dystopian apocalypse caused by MeowMeowBeanz, I appreciated the show dialing things back to a smaller scale but it was an episode that was for the most part neither fish nor fowl: not a ton of laughs but also not emotional stakes on the level of the Jeff/Duncan/Britta outing from a few weeks ago.

Brian Collins, Badass Digest:
I should be annoyed that a show that's often too crammed to provide good material for all eight of its principal characters will devote another 30 seconds or so to a guy that they never met (and introduce another character in the process), but there's something wonderfully insane about offering up a bit of this nothing character's backstory.

Gabrielle Moss, TV Fanatic:
Not to say that it was weak by any means. It was just a bit quiet in a season that's been mostly about loud, thunderous statements - but we do need those quiet episodes, so all those thunderous episodes in a row don't totally pop our ear drums (you know, the ear drums of our minds? You know what I mean). (4.6/5)

Polar Bears Watch TV:
As for the Hickey-Jeff-Shirley storyline, it’s definitely a step down; it’s entertaining and fitting, given Gilligan’s involvement in the episode, but it seems a bit limited, repeating character beats we’ve already seen before. Nevertheless, I do enjoy what the episode does with Shirley, and Kevin Chang’s become a really fun presence. (B+)

Joe Matar, Den of Geek:
Just because this is a Dan Harmon-run season doesn’t mean it does everything with flawless aplomb. Again, the buildup is minimal and this textbook outlaws plot is constantly skirting the line between being believable and not. But there is still the matter of consistency in tone and that’s the other thing Community episodes, including this one, typically get right.

Damon Houx, ScreenCrush:
One of the themes of ‘Community’ that’s been a consistent throughout it’s [sic] five seasons is that these people can be terrible, but often realize it and try to make it up to each other. This comes up again in tonight’s episode and though it was amusing, it felt a little formulaic and could be the weakest of the year.

Jared Russo, GeekBinge:
I thought it was too short. It just felt like there needed to be a bit more to each of the main two storylines. And both of them are very strong, and they had the potential to be their own A plots in another episode. (9.5/10)

Tim Morse, Morse Code:
But I couldn’t help but feel like this episode was muddled a bit. Maybe if they focused on one of the two stories and involved everyone, it would have worked better. I don’t think either story got the necessary amount of screen time for me to call either a success. (7.7/10)

Mark Harrison, Den of Geek:
The fact that the stand-out moments come close to the beginning and the end of the episode respectively, makes for a slightly puffy centre, limited by the uneven distribution of the regulars between sub-plots, and the slightly rushed conclusion.

Untempered Television:
I was strangely enthralled with the Annie/Anthony dynamic; her with her constant infectious optimism and his general demeanor as one who seems to have just returned home after years of living in the woods while serial killing on the side (even Abed could tell he was weird).

Sarah Shachat, ScreenCrave:
Although the storylines were slightly uneven, “VCR Maintenance and Educational Publishing,” got the sentiment right in the end. The episode addresses the Troy Barnes-shaped hole in Abed and Annie’s life seriously, without losing a whit of silliness. Five tornado howdy! (8/10)

Nick Hogan, TV Overmind:
This was a hilarious episode. Community is getting better and better every week, and there’s no slowing it down. I mean, if Donald Glover’s departure won’t slow it down, what will?

Nick O'Malley, masslive.com:
The first official "Deal entering the study room in a ridiculous costume and saying something weird" moment of the season might have been the best one in the run of the show. The moment would have been a wonderful complement were it featured in a good episode. Instead, it stood out as the brief highlight in a mediocre one.

Jennifer Marie, Just About Write:
A show like Community cannot pretend that Troy’s absence or Pierce’s absence doesn’t affect its dynamic and structure and I think that for the most part, the writers and Harmon have tried to distract us with guest stars and homages and pop culture references in hopes that we would simply forget that the Greendale Seven are now the Greendale Five. And though this episode was flawed, I am glad that the writers and Harmon finally addressed the off-balanced nature of the study group in Troy's absence.

Eric Goldman, IGN:
Dan Harmon is not one to brush something under a rug or to think one big episode is all you need to deal with a character’s absence, and the lingering emotions centered around Troy leaving have been very well handled. (9.0)

Thanks for reading, everyone! See you next week for the return of Dungeons and Dragons.
509epdiscussion


JEFF, SHIRLEY AND HICKEY DISCOVER A HIDDEN CACHE OF PRISTINE TEXTBOOKS – ABED AND ANNIE EMPLOY AN INTERACTIVE VCR GAME TO DECIDE ON A NEW ROOMMATE – “BREAKING BAD” CREATOR VINCE GILLIGAN AND BRIE LARSON GUEST STAR – When Jeff, Shirley and Professor Hickey happen upon a hidden cache of textbooks, the discovery leads to some interesting power shifts as the group struggles with how to monetize their windfall. Meanwhile, Abed and Annie decide it’s time for a new roommate. Abed wants his friend Rachel (guest star Brie Larson, “United States of Tara”) to move in, while Annie wants her brother to move in. When they decide to play an old VCR game to determine the winner, things get a little intense.
Title: Insert Movie Title Here
Fandom: Community
Song & Artist: "How You Like Me Now" by the Heavy, "Unbelievers" by Vampire Weekend, "Let's Go" by Matt & Kim, and "Feeling a Moment" by Feeder
Description: Jeff is a jaded ex lawyer turned lazy teacher and Annie is the optimistic ex pill addict turned Greendale school supervisor who sets him straight. Otherwise known as THE MOST RIDICULOUS THING I'VE EVER MADE!!!

This was made in honor of the wonderful crackers4jenn being born and becoming awesome. Happy Late Birthday!!

Watch HERE @ nvrbnkisst
Good morning, Communies! I give last night's episode five Meow Meow Beans! And I give HitFix's Alan Sepinwall one Bean for going to see a play last night instead of staying home to watch Community and more than 12 hours later still having failed to post a review. Now let's see what the reviewers who take their jobs seriously had to say!

Matt Carter, cartermatt.com:
There were so many great moments in here, from Jeff working with the frat guys to Abed making small talk to Britta throwing mustard on her face to appeal to the commoners. It was completely ridiculous, but also funny through and through. (A-)

Brian Collins, Badass Digest:
Last week's episode was praised for toning things down and focusing on characters instead of a high concept, so in Community's world, it actually makes perfect sense that they'd come back with an episode that pays homage to Zardoz, of all goddamn things. The great thing about the show is that it can swing back and forth like this without giving its fans whiplash - it's always done fine with both ends of the spectrum.

Todd VanDerWerff, A.V. Club:
Some of it is wildly funny. Some of it is impressively original. Some of it has a lot to say about social media culture and the ways we try to make ourselves look better on Facebook, Twitter, and the Internet in general. And some of it is just a mess.

Gabrielle Moss, TV Fanatic:
The playfulness of this half hour, the Community quotes, the social commentary, the part where Britta becomes a socialist revolutionary-cum-warlord--I feel like we're finally seeing this show bloom into the complicated, deranged flower that we planted five seasons ago. (4.8/5)

Jared Russo, Geek Binge:
This is a loaded episode, that can often times be deep, and has a constant string of interesting things to show and profound things to say, however ridiculous both can be. “App Development and Condiments” is outlandish and wildly entertaining from the get-go, and never lets up. (10/10)

Ben Umstead, Twitch:
Franky, this is as close as Dan Harmon-led Community can get to paint by the numbers. Which is probably less a knock and more a testament to just how good the show remains.

Joe Matar, Den of Geek:
I can see a lot of people finding this one flat out dumb (and there’s certainly an argument there). I even sort of feel like I’m betraying my standards for what makes a Community episode good (I thought the previous episode was the best of this season). But for whatever reason, the very fact that “App Development and Condiments” is (mostly) ungrounded and unabashedly ridiculous is what made it work for me. (4/5)

Eric Goldman, IGN:
Unfortunatey, the episode kind of petered out at the end. Britta successfully getting almost everyone on her side was somewhat abruptly undone, adding a sad note just a week after she seemed to be heading in a better direction. (7.6/10)

PolarBear, Polar Bears Watch TV:
The episode is certainly overstuffed, as it attempts to provide social commentary on whatever seems to come up; admittedly, this could use a few extra minutes to let the plot breathe a bit. However, the concept alone is already infectious, grabbing hold of the audience the same way MeowMeowBeenz grabs hold of the school. The show throws itself headfi
rst into this idea, and man, does it pay off. (A-)

Nick O'Malley, masslive.com:
In the end, I felt robbed. I really wish we got more affirmation on the Jeff-Shirley relationship, another touching moment that builds upon their trust and friendship. Instead, it sort of just picks right back up with a shrug. I love the way these characters expose their true selves to each other, building an unlikely friendship. This time, though, I didn't feel like the resolution was earned.

Mark Harrison, Den of Geek:
App Development And Condiments represents the series at the very peak of its power, doing many of the things it's best at - high-concept escalations, character interactions, zeitgeist-y satire that never comes off as too arch or obvious - all at the same freaking time.

Thanks for reading!
 
508epdiscussion


GREENDALE BECOMES GROUND ZERO FOR THE BETA TEST OF A NEW SOCIAL NETWORKING ‘APP’ – Dean Pelton invites two designers to Greendale to beta test their new social networking Application. What starts as a fun social interaction of ranking classmates turns into an all-out class war as Greendale students compete for the highest score. Jeff and Shirley battle for supremacy, while Britta rails against the very concept. Meanwhile, Professor Hickey goes underground – literally – until the whole thing blows over.
Good morning, Communies! So, how did you guys enjoy the Olympics? I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the cross-county skiing events. And how about the gold-medal women's hockey game between the USA and Canada? What a heartbreaker, but a great game against two outstanding teams. I think the Winter Olympics need more events like hockey and cross-country, where the athletes compete directly in head-to-head competition. That's what sport is all about in my opinion. Watching a bunch of individuals trying to slide down a hill fastest or jump off a ramp the farthest just doesn't do it for me, you know? And don't get me started on the judged events. I ... wait, what?

Oh, yeah. So, how about that new episode of new episode of Community last night? I enjoyed it, but let's see what the professionals though of it.

The critics are all ghosts!Collapse )

Thanks for reading, everyone! See you next week!
507epdiscussion


JEFF COUNSELS DUNCAN ON HOW TO WOO BRITTA – ABED AND PROFESSOR HICKEY SPEND SOME QUALITY TIME TOGETHER AND CHANG HAS A GHOSTLY EXPERIENCE – Professor Duncan decides it’s time to seduce Britta and Jeff counsels him on how to close the deal. Meanwhile, Britta runs into some old friends and realizes that they have moved on from their shared anarchist views of the past. Abed runs afoul of Professor Hickey when he accidentally damages some drawings Hickey has been laboring over. When Hickey restrains Abed as punishment, the two wind up spending some meaningful time together. Meanwhile, Chang finds himself performing an impromptu one-man show for a ghostly audience.

(Sorry about the delay - work thing kept me out late...)

Community [Intros]

I recently made 3 new Community vids. Hope you enjoy!!

Title
: Community in the style of The Wonder Years
Fandom: Community (the wonder years?)
Song & Artist: With a Little Help From My Friends by Joe Cocker
Description: I had a lot of fun making alternate intros and rashaka mentioned a while ago in a comment that she thought the song would work for a Community video. Probably not what she had in mind, but Community definitely feels very Wonder Years-Esq at times. I hope it pleases you anyways! :)

Watch it HERE @ nvrbnkisst

Title: Community in the style of The Walking Dead
Fandom: Community (The Walking Dead sorta?)
Song & Artist: Theme Song by Rodrigo Garcia
Description: so, during my search to see if anyone had attempted an alternate version of the opening credits to Community I stumbled upon a ton of Community intros done in the style of other fandoms. My favorites have been the Arrested Development mashup and the Parks & Rec mashup. So after finishing my Alternate Intro video, I decided to try my hand at one.

Watch it HERE @ nvrbnkisst

Title: Community Alternate Intro
Fandom: Community
Song & Artist: At Least it was Here by the 88
Description: What my take on the opening sequence would look like using scenes from the show. Inspired by THIS scene from the movie Easy A

Watch it HERE @ nvrbnkisst

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