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Here’s my wrap-up/review of Community Season 2. What did you think?
May 26, 2011
- The Community-Cougar Town Love continues with Abed popping up on the Cougar Town season finale.
- Ken Jeong (Chang) hosted the 2011 Billboard Music Awards. See a clip here.
- Community was renewed for a THIRD season by NBC, to premiere around September 2011.
Community on Twitter
Joel McHale (Jeff)
Donald Glover (Troy)
Alison Brie (Annie)
Gillian Jacobs (Britta)
Yvette Nicole Brown (Shirley)
Danny Pudi (Abed)
Jim Rash (Dean Pelton)
Ken Jeong (Chang)
Dan Harmon (Creator)
- Is Cheryl Cole (of the X Factor UK) really going to be dropped from the US version (which is yet to air), just because of her accent? Apparently that’s not the only reason, with disputes with fellow judge Paula Abdul being cited. TMZ has the full developing story. She will also apparently be replaced with Nicole Scherzinger.
- There are rumours swirling regarding the addition of a new cast member to Modern Family; read this if you want to find out more (possible spoilers).
- The mutual love and respect between Cougar Town and Community continues, despite them being on opposing networks (ABC and NBC respectively), with the character of Abed Nadir (played by Danny Pudi) turning up on the finale of Cougar Town, TVLine reveals. This follows various cross-referencing by each of the shows, as well as Dan Byrd and Busy Phillips appearing on the Community Season 2 finale. Abed of course mentions this infamous guest-role in an episode entitled “Critical Film Studies”, but noone- it had to be said- expected the cameo to actually come to fruition. But the most amusing thing is this:
“(Bill) Lawrence tells TVLine that neither series’ network (ABC and NBC) or studio (Disney and Sony) had any idea that the two shows were working in cahoots.”See the clip HERE
There’s a slightly amusing interview from Zap2it with Gillian Jacobs who plays Britta on Community which got me thinking about Season 2 as a whole, and the (only slight) problems I had with it.
She takes slight offence (albeit somewhat mockingly) to the Britta being referred to as “strident”… she prefers “opinionated”. I would have thought it was a fairly accurate description though. Not that that’s a bad thing though, her character certainly adds a great deal to the show, unlike Chevy Chase’s Pierce.
For anyone who’s seen Season 2, they’d know that it was almost single-handedly ruined by the presence of Pierce. Now, I’m not coming at this from a show fanboy perspective, as in, “I hate Roy being on the show because he’s keeping Jim and Pam from getting together”, to use an old, The Office example. I’m talking about the way that he has become more of an antagonist than ever, creating unnecessary, annoying subplots to episodes which would have been fine as they were. Take the “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons” episode, in which a perfectly fine idea of an imaginary game of D&D was played out to boost the self-esteem of fellow student Neil (it makes more sense if you watch it), was ruined by way of Pierce’s sniping. Again, in the “Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking” episode, he was manipulative and conniving. Now again, I don’t mind so much the idea of him playing an antagonist of sorts, like he was in the first season (where he was pretty much just a bumbling, politically incorrect old man, who didn’t know any better), but for mine, he has shifted the focus of the show and he seems to constantly derail plot-lines. It has created a problem for both the characters on the show (should the keep in the study group or not?) and the writers (should they make him more docile and forget all this character “development” or play up his role as villain?) which hopefully is resolved in Season 3.
I found it interesting that at the beginning of the season, Chang was pegged at being a potential problem for the show (he no longer was a teacher, so he lost all of his power, and consequentially, any kind of gravitas or importance on-screen). It seemed he would become an annoying, insane presence on the show, who constantly wanted to join the study group. And it was quite admirable how the writers handled it, they introduced the Shirley baby-plot to make him appear more human, and his other appearances were inserted sparingly.
She also states; “I don’t know what’s left”, in terms of weird plot-lines for the show (they’ve done zombies, space, etc.), and that might indeed be a good thing. While the big, flashy episodes may garner a small amount of publicity, it relies too heavily on them and would appear gimmicky to newcomers. A return to Season 1’s more understated “big” episodes would be welcome (“Contemporary American Poultry”, for example).
And a word on the finale; yes it was good, but it could never top “Modern Warfare”, no matter how many big-name guest stars (Josh Holloway, Busy Phillips, Dan Byrd) were shoved into it, no matter how long and overblown it was (a two-parter stretched across two weeks, no less), no matter how many shows it tried to reference (Star Wars, spaghetti Westerns, etc.), no matter how many “surprise” kisses were thrown in (I won’t spoil it), no matter how high the stakes were… It just couldn’t. But I reiterate, it was good, it was great even, but it couldn’t top the first, and it seemed endemic of the writer’s desire to top Season 1 by recreating the “best” parts of Season 1 and multiplying it by a billion. The best part about Season 1 was that it seemed different to everything else on the box at the time (and as it turned out, it was), Season 2 should have seemed different to Season 1, is all.
[And just a word on the Josh Holloway, Busy Phillips and Dan Byrd appearances. I know the show is supposed to be meta, or meta on top of meta on top of meta, or whatever, but the fact that Abed referenced Lost in “Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas”, then one of the central stars happens to show up on campus the next year… seems kind of strange. At least, if everyone assumes that he is a Holloway lookalike, there could at least be a sly mention of it. I’m happy to let the Cougar Town stars’ appearances slide, as even though Abed spoke incessantly about it in “Critical Film Studies”, he may not have seen these two celebs who have made their way into the crowd. Nit-picky? Narrh…]
We all know that the networks wouldn’t survive without the myriad US TV shows currently airing on TV. For many years, procedurals such as the CSI series and the Law and Order series have propped up Channels Nine and Ten respectively and filled programming holes after sudden axinsgs. The Desperate Housewives/Greys Anatomy duo has also been a reliable ratings puller for Channel Seven.
However, then there are other shows that come and go, partly because they have been axed in the US, but sometimes because they have been removed from Australian schedules do to insufficient ratings.
Some are also criminally left out of the schedule all together; critically acclaimed shows that aren’t even given a go based on programmers’ presumptions that they are too obscure or quirky to work on Australian TV.
But with this new era of multi-channeling, there are not really many excuses for yanking a show off air, and even less for not giving a show a chance.
Here is a list of recent shows, and if they have or haven’t been picked up by a FTA network in Australia, as well as how many seasons there have been.