Sitcoms virtually battle it out for prime time air space these days and one show that seems to be working its way in to the hearts of television viewers as well as the exalted altitudes of the charts is the NBC sitcom, Community. Community centers around Greedale Community college in Colorado, where a starkly diverse group of students have enrolled for various purposes. The show centers around Jeff Winger (played by Joel McHale) who was a lawyer until the bar association discovered that his degree was not valid. He enrolls in the community college to complete a degree in law and joins a Spanish study group which comprises of the other main characters in the show.
Community is audaciously funny and can often have you in splits as they showcase some amazing humour and especially side splitting funny spoofs of popular movies and other snippets of popular culture. Adding fun and flair to the show is Gillian Jacobs as Britta Perry, on whom Jeff has a huge crush, Danny Pudi as a pop culture addict Abed Nadir, Chevy Chase as Pierce, a racist, homophobic former entrepreneur who joins the college to battle loneliness, Yvette Nicole Brown as Shirley, a mother of two, Donald Glover as Troy, a former high school quarterback and as the nerdy Annie Edison, Alison Brie.
The show has been praised by reputed critics for its humour, especially their take on the egregious cliches of pop culture and the most famous movies from Hollywood. The most screamingly funny episode is when the group celebrates Halloween and Abed dresses up as Batman and renders an amazingly accurate and hilarious depiction of the superhero in Dark Knight. The Spanish study group, which consists of all the main characters and meets almost everyday, itself is a parody of The Breakfast Club, the teen drama written and directed by John Hughes. The constituents of the group themselves are caricatures of deep set stereotypes and the show manages to extract maximum comedy out of the prejudices and popular theories about each stereotypical class.
The type of humour Community espouses is particularly hard to pull off and that is exactly what makes the show special. The tongue in cheek and irreverent portrayal of pop culture has been around a long time, from the movie Airplane in 1980. The show has the knack of citing vintage pop culture while at the same time mocking the YouTube generation’s abuse of those touchstones — homage under the protective cover of parody.
The show has had a largely positive response from fans and critics alike, with some even going as far to say that Community is the best new show of the fall season. The show has had an aggregate score of 8.1 out of 10 among viewers and is in favour with the big wigs of the critics department as well. The show has even received a few nominations for the best show at various T.V award shows and looks set to continue its good running.
The show premiered in 2009 and has now moved in to its second season and seems to be here to stay. One of the best shows on T.V now, the show is sure to rock the screens for many
more years to come. At a time when many critics were predicting the demise of the sitcom genre, shows like Community are sure to keep it in circulation for the times to come.
Aju Basil James