Hi, my name is Bryce, and I’ve lived under a rock for the past 15 years. True, I did watch the first few episodes of Community way back when it premiered in 2009, but I lost interest in them and just decided the show wasn’t for me. I stuck by that decision for the next 15 years, despite the fact that so many people talked about how much they liked the show, and how many accolades it got from critics.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago, when I was bored and just wanted to watch something I didn’t have to think about. And there was Netflix, helpfully suggesting I should really give Community a shot. I finally caved to the pressure and started the first episode. It was like 20 minutes. Surely checking it out again was worth 20 minutes of my “I’m bored and want to be entertained” time.
Obviously I realized the error of my ways. In my defense, the first few episodes weren’t representative of the show as a whole, so I think it’s somewhat understandable why I gave up when I had to wait a week between episodes. But after the first few, the show found its feet quickly, and it’s a show that lends itself very well to binging. Each episode doesn’t take that long so you can fit it in here or there wherever you want.
The strengths of the show definitely lie in the writing and the variety of viewpoints the characters bring to the table. You’ve got a basic setup: a diverse group of people meet up to start a study group at a community college. From there, the show soon moves beyond the typical community college setting and really becomes more of a satire of education and college years in general. I mean, you’ve got episode 23 (“Modern Warfare”), which was a definite highlight. The dean offers priority registration as a prize for a paintball tournament, and the entire campus goes wild, hyper-focused on winning the chance to get any class they want. The episode becomes a send-up of a whole litany of movies, and the more familiar you are with film, the more amusing it all becomes.
Spoiler alert, folks: I’m pretty familiar with film.
The whole show is practically tailor made for me, and I’m kicking myself for having waited this long to check it out. (Though it’s another piece of evidence for why companies like Netflix should give a show a bit more breathing room before they decided to cancel it out of hand.)
Don’t be like me, people. If you want to have a good laugh and a break from whatever it is you’re doing, definitely check out Community. (Unless you’d rather spend your time making fun of me for being such a doofus and missing out on the fun for so long.)