DIANNE BUTLER OUT OF THE BOX
THIS isn’t too bad in winter, I suppose, but is 5.30 in the afternoon the ideal time for Community? Not sure that it is. Terrific show, but it has never quite fired up. Don’t know. On the other hand, I can’t understand why anybody watches NCIS. Most of life’s a mystery and there are two more.
So to recap: Community was yanked off air late last year, for reasons unknown, and you’ve probably forgotten everything you ever knew about it. OK, so it’s set in a community college, around a study group.
The ringleader, played by Joel McHale — very funny guy — is a struck-off lawyer trying to get it together again (I remember one line from the first episode where the dean says to him he thought he had a degree from Columbia and he says, ‘‘ Yeah, and now I need to get one from America’’), but it’s essentially an ensemble. Chevy Chase is in it, too, which shows you it really is ensemble because I didn’t mention him first.
Ken Jeong — Mr Chow from The Hangover movies — plays Senor Chang, a possibly dangerous sociopath who got sacked as a teacher and is now a student. Betty White has been in it a couple of times as a hardcore anthropology pro- fessor. It’s a great show when it’s on its game.
Two episodes here: the first one is done in stop animation — clever — but the second one is better, where they’re admitting a new person to their study group. One contender is Rich, who seems right, but perhaps a bit old — he has a landline and uses the word ‘‘ album’’.
One of the guest stars is Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Theo Huxtable on The Cosby Show, who gets in a nice Bill Cosby jumper gag.
He plays the reformed exhusband of Shirley, who has just taken him back. Her friend Britta is unimpressed with her forgiving attitude: ‘‘ Well I guess that completely unbangs that stripper.’’ Community GO, 5.30pm
Ringleader: Joel McHale