Friday, May 6, 2011

What Could "Community" Do Next Year?

I intended to liveblog the season finale of "Community" last night, but since they only showed the first half of the epic paintball war, I knew it wasn't going to be enough to fill up a whole post. "A Fistful of Paintballs" was pretty great, and I started thinking about what kind of episodes I'd like to see next year. Ratings have held steady and the show has been renewed for a third season, so it's high time for some speculation. Like Abed, I'm a pretty meta media nerd and I've successfully fought my way out of the wilds of TV Tropes many times (I am not responsible for what may happen to you if you click on any of the links in this post). Let's see what we can come up with here.

A Lower Deck Episode - Give the main cast members a break and devote an episode to the collection of minor characters that have appeared on "Community" like Fat Neil, Magnitude, Starburns, Leonard, and Vicky. And maybe have Chang or John Oliver along, just for fun. We know that Neil has been depressed from the "Dungeons and Dragons" episode, but he's been getting very close to Vicky lately. There has to have been some fallout from the election rivalry of Leonard and Magnitude. And what of the sequel to "Star Burns: El Star Prince"?

Welcome to the Real World - Troy wakes up to discover that - ohmigod - "Community" is really a TV show! All his friends are really actors, and their personalities are all different! People who work behind the scenes on the production appear on camera, Dan Harmon reveals himself to be a secret awesome evil mastermind, and all the meta threatens to hit the saturation point. Bonus points if this is somehow a "30 Rock" parody. Double bonus points if Richard Ayoade (who directed the "My Dinner With Andre"/"Pulp Fiction" episode) shows up in character as Moss from "The IT Crowd."

Rashomon - I'm a little surprised this hasn't been tackled yet. "Rashomon" episodes, also known as the "That's not how I remember it!" episodes are popular because they can be done easy and cheap, and be used to underline certain character traits. Of course, this means "Community" would probably want to subvert the whole idea. Maybe have the Dean interrogate the study group members over some incident, and grow increasingly frustrated as he gets the exact same story every time. So he starts making up what he thinks each person should be saying.

The Magnificent Seven Samurai - Okay, no more Kurosawa after this one, but the Weinsteins just announced that they're trying to remake the movie, so as far as I'm concerned it's fair game for "Community." And come on, they have Chevy Chase, who has already done "Three Amigos," the best "Seven Samurai" homage ever. Instead of protecting a village of peasants the study group could be hired to lead around clueless Japanese tourists or coach spelling bee participants, and then unwittingly turn them into monsters through a Training the Peaceful Villagers sequence gone horribly wrong.

Vampires - Yes, I remember Abed the vampire from "Physical Education," but that was only one scene. Last year they did Zombies for Halloween. Maybe for next Valentine's Day, we could have a creepy, emotionally manipulative lothario put half the study group under his thrall - not necessarily just the ladies - thus requiring Jeff or Troy to go Van Helsing on his ass. Now what could stand in for the vampire? A beet juice sucking diet guru? A studly philanthropist allergic to sunlight? I've been looking for a good smackdown of all the vampire properties that have been popping up lately.

More Paintball? - Next week's big season finale is still to come, but is there any doubt that we'll get another paintball episode in the future? We've now seen paintball wars in the vein of big summer action movies and Westerns. What's left? Logically, WWII war films like "Patton," "The Great Escape," and "The Dirty Dozen." Having successfully defended their own campus from invaders, maybe next year they can go infiltrate City College. Get Dean Pelton in the most fabulous military outfit he can find to lead the charge, and they'll never know what hit them. Or if WWII is too obscure, roll out the shakeycam and do "Battle: Los Angeles"/"Black Hawk Down."

And I'm still trying to figure out how they could work pirates into the show somehow. Stay tuned.

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