Community Review: Welcome to Funkytown
Oh, Community, how I do love thee.
Week after week, the sitcom produces some of the most inventive and entertaining plots of any show on television. This episode was not much different, as it took a quasi shot at conspiracy thrillers in "Conspiracy Theories and Interior Design."
No specific movie comes to mind, there were moments where I thought the background music had a definite Rubicon feel to it, as Annie and Jeff investigated an apparent conspiracy afoot within the night school system.
I enjoyed the revolving table-turning between the Dean, Jeff and Annie at the end, but laughed out loud in particular at the sabotaging of Annie's toy car in the diorama and subsequent explosion, which led to a moment of Jeff "rescuing" Annie, tackling her to the floor.
Is it just me, or do Jeff and Annie have some insane chemistry? I rather like the implications of a potential romance between them. Britta certainly picked up on it as the two shared a moment in the blanket fort.
Speaking of which, leave it to the deliriously bonkers brain of Dan Harmon to come up with a subplot revolving around a two grown men building said fort and, then "going global" by expanding it throughout the dorm.
The street signs and references to a Civil Rights Museum, the Turkish District (complete with hookah pipes) and Latvian Independence Parade had me rolling.
While this episode had no real flashes of brilliance - as displayed in the often-referenced "Modern Warfare" or "Contemporary American Poultry" - it did have several rather amusing moments. Overall, though, it seemed like a missed opportunity to really lampoon the conspiracy thriller genre. I wish they'd have picked a specific film, focused solely on that (saving the awesome blanket fort for another time) and run with it they way they have in previous efforts.
As much as I laughed, I also couldn't help but feel a little cheated over the gang working splintered efforts, with hide nor hair of Shirley, Pierce or Britta. (Did Pierce even have a line?)
Community is the most creative comedy on television, even on a subpar week, but shines its brightest when the Magnificient Seven engage with each other and play off each other's nutty personalities as a group. That said, enjoy a look at the best quotes from the episode:
Jeff: I'm proud of Annie. She took to deception like Abed took to Cougar Town.
Abed: It's good. | permalink
Abed: Welcome to Funkytown. No smoking, no farting, no pillow fighting.
Annie: We're in a chase!
Abed: That's allowed. | permalink
Annie: There's a conspiracy here. A dark, vast conspiracy that just may that go all the way to the top.
Jeff: This is Greendale, Annie. If there is a conspiracy, it goes to slightly above the middle. | permalink
Jeff: That is gonna be the worst book I ever read cover to cover. | permalink
Jeff: Looks like someone sent us a message. A tiny, underwhelming message. | permalink
Dean Pelton: I have always dreamt of playing charades with you, Jeffrey. Just not like this. And not on dry land. | permalink
Theater Teacher: My family name was Professorberg, but we changed it when we were fleeing from the Nazis. | permalink
Community: "Conspiracy Theories and Soft Defenses"
Jeffrey Kirkpatrick is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.