in Review

Role-Playing Community

So I’m gonna start reviewing TV episodes, since, well, why not? I usually do seasonal wrap-ups, but why not just talk about the show as it goes on? I’ll do the best I can to post every week, and who knows, maybe the rest of the team can get in on this too.

Community – “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons”

Community continues to prove itself as one of the best comedies on TV this season with last night’s baffling “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons.” An episode full of enough laughs for everyone to shine, and some heart too. And I don’t just mean the cast, the music and sound design this week was great and the episode was shot and edited in a way that made it seem much more epic that usual, despite us spending our time with the familiar cast in their most common setting.

So there’s this guy, Neil, who everyone calls Fat Neil. Jeff notices this, and feigns interest in DnD to buddy up with Fat Neil, since he feels bad for the guy. When it seems like Fat Neil might be suicidal, Jeff enlists the help of the study group to play a game with the poor lad, in the hopes of cheering him up. They leave out the insensitive Pierce, whose feelings are hurt when he finds the group. Pierce decides to sabotage the game and is especially mean to Fat Neil. With possibly the young man’s real life on the line, the group must work together to stop Pierce.

With a set up like that, I expected we’d be teleported to a fantasy world, where we could laugh at our heroes in silly costumes as they sarcastically deal with DnD tropes. Kind of like the Christmas special. But Community is smarter than that. DnD is a game that takes place entirely in your mind, and that’s the way the show handled it, with the cast sitting around the table the only visual for most of the episode. This was a brave approach, but it really paid off, giving us classic moments like the hilarious sex scene between Hector The Well-Endowed and the elf maiden. Plus you can’t beat the sight gag of Chang painted black with white hair.

I feel bad for Shirley, she didn’t get anything to do this week. But the rest of the cast got some great laughs and I wouldn’t be surprised if some people thought this was the best episode of the series so far. I’m not one of those people, but “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons” could still probably be top ten.

Comments are closed.