Episode 8 - Herstory of Dance
9 April 2013
The tone of this, ultra-pleasant and growth oriented, fit the season arc of having the characters reach better places. However there was too much crammed in and the Britta plot was bizarre. The Sophie B Hawkins misspeak felt like such a stretched premise for Britta to take a stand on. Particularly given that she did help Jeff reconcile with his father it seemed odd for her to be so afraid of being seen as a failure. Then the conclusion where Pierce suddenly grows a conscience and saves the day said more about him than it did about Britta.
It would have been a lot more productive to leave the dance as a simple background plot (and ignore Troy altogether) and dedicate the whole episode to Abed. I really liked the structure of his story. He decides to try and break out of his pattern (of seeing the world as a TV episode) and go on an actual date but when the chance to date two girls at the same dance comes up he can't resist. As soon as he bumps into the cute coat check girl you knew what was going on. In many ways it was taking Community back to season one when it managed to tell traditional sit com stories through the prism of mocking the formula. If we had time to see Abed's dates for longer and have him spend longer with Rachel the whole thing might have been great. Instead it was rushed and felt very convenient. Abed was the character who most reflected Dan Harmon's complex mind and so he has struggled to feel authentic this season. This was a good effort but definitely needed more focus not to feel like his new relationship was staged.
Credit to Chang though. I actually enjoyed knowing that he was faking everything and see how far he was willing to take his amnesia act.
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