So, Community just blew my goddamn mind. Can we start by taking a moment to reflect on how effing ground-breaking and amazing it is? Okay, wait, first, if you haven’t seen tonight’s episode—and if you haven’t seen tonight’s episode, why are you reading this? My recaps are barely coherent when you have seen the episode—it was all puppets. Gah. Damn. Puh. Pets. NBC, 8 p.m., and Community has the balls to do a half hour of puppets.
And it also has the balls to show Joel McHale’s hair looking like that. (Meanwhile, Britta, those waves are looking good, girl.) Jeff’s got despair hair, I guess. (Oh, I’m onto the recap now, you guys. Hang on, I’ll back up. I’m all over the place tonight.)
INT. Study lounge. The group is tense. No dialogue. Cut to the opening credits. What’s wrong? Days-long awkward silence. Pourquoi? Color me intrigued.
Puppet therapy! Not the dean’s worst idea. Hey, where’s Pierce? Nobody’s seen him since he went missing in the woods. Annnnd…we’re off. Strap on those puppets, you guys, we’re going to get to the bottom of things. (Just like the whip in Puppet Jeff’s hand probably gets to the bottom of Puppet Dean’s…bottom. Or something. I don’t know.)
Britta’s pro puppet, and as Britta has become this season’s Abed, I say let’s go for it. Sex jokes about Jeff and Britta. (Yeah! I told you, they are going to happen.) (Also, is it weird that Britta and Jeff are discussing sex details with Troy sitting right there? He doesn’t seem to mind. I believe even in his heart he knows Jeff and Britta belong together.)
Deanocchio! (I don’t know why. I mean, I know, puppets, but I don’t know why.)
If there is an Emmy for puppetry, then Community just won it. These puppets are uncannily like their characters. Special hat tip to Jeff’s skyward eyebrow and everything about Pierce. Amazing. Also, rubberflubbing.
Tour of humans in the study lounge! It feels weird to see actual people with puppet people. It makes the puppet people seem so small and vulnerable. I worry for them.
The study group is stuck in a rut and needs an adventure. (Me too, study group! Take me with you!) Oh, they’re singing. Holy hell, singing puppets. (Also, Yvette Nicole Brown should do Broadway after Community goes off the air, WHICH SHOULD BE NEVER.) It’s settled: hot-air balloon. Oh! Sara Bareilles is the hot-air balloon guy. How cute it she? Sometimes when I’m depressed I play her song “Gravity” over and over and simultaneously sing it and pretend I have a good, tortured voice and also imagine myself doing that amaaaazing dance routine from So You Think You Can Dance when the girl was an addict and the guy was her addiction and it was so. fucking. good. and I don’t know if “Gravity” is actually about addiction but it should be. Anyway, there’s Sara, ready to help them with the balloon. Except, oops, she missed it. SARA, YOU ARE SO STUPID! Runaway balloon. And now they’re off to heaven. Have fun, you guys!
Storm’s a-brewin’. Damn you, everybody (especially Vicki)! Scary noises! Oh, it’s Jason Alexander with hair. (Suddenly the puppets-humans dynamic feels very Muppetsy. You guys figured that out like, 10 minutes in, right? Stop bragging. I got there eventually.) George Costanza’s gone grizzlyman, and he’s convincing the gang to drop out of civilization and chill in the woods. Oh, and he’s poisoning them with berries. Coolcoolcool.
Everybody’s tripping their ass off, getting all sharey and stuff. Shirley doesn’t know how to trip right. Stroking your friend’s skin and telling her she feels like felt: good. Confessing to accidentally leaving your kids in a grocery store overnight: bad. Total devilberry buzzkill.
Oh, except, unwitting helpfulness, Shirl: Nobody remembered that story. Nobody remembers anything, turns out. Hurrah! They’re in the clear. Except… now Shirley’s gone and shared this kind of horrible thing she did and no one else has. (And also, am I the only one still wondering where Pierce is?) Prison rules: Everybody’s got to tell now. (They probably don’t play this game in prison, but I couldn’t think of anything else to say.) Abed, sit.
Here goes: Jeff was a crappy dad to his girlfriend’s kid. Britta’s never voted. Annie let the prof give her a foot massage for test answers. Troy burned down Greendale. (I think? This one was hard to understand.) Pierce never slept with Eartha Kitt. (Oh, hi, Sara Bareilles.) No secret for Abed, he was just mirroring their awkward behavior. (He’s kind of like Ally Sheedy in Breakfast Club, with nothing better to do on a Saturday. Abed and Allison would make a cute couple, actch.)
Sexy Jeffrey puppet. Rrrrowr. (Do you think you can order those online? Hahahaha, I’m just kidding. (No I’m not.))
Heeheeheehee. Puppet outtakes. Yvette Nicole Brown is really excited about her puppet.
(Sigh.) I love this show so much. This episode was so sweet. I think this weekend I’ll eat some brownies…erm…I mean devilberries…and watch it again. (And seriously, if you know where I can get one of those Winger puppets, don’t be shy.) (Hahahahahaha, totally kidding again. (No I’m not.))
Watch the entire episode below!