Cheers to Community for giving viewers a reason to celebrate Valentine's Day.
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With all due respect to a certain weekly entertainment magazine (where — in the interest of full disclosure — I must admit I worked for many years), "TV's smartest comedy" airs 90 minutes earlier than the glib, heartless Parks & Recreation. In its sophomore season, Community has truly warmed up. It's not just about clever pop-culture references and anything-for-a-laugh surrealism. The characters have genuinely come to care for one another in a non-cloying way, allowing fans to develop deeper attachments to them, too. Never was that clearer than in the Valentine's Day episode, when the seemingly too-hip-for-the-classroom Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) finally told his study group mates that he loves them — albeit in a mass voicemail.
And talk about smart: The episode, "Early 21st Century Romanticism," was packed with useful information. To wit:
- 1) "In England, everything means vagina" — at least according to Professor Duncan (John Oliver). Also, pizzas are called "Italian fannies." You don't want to know what "banger" means.
- 2) When you take enough prescription painkillers, like Pierce (poignantly played by real-life ex-pill addict Chevy Chase), a tiny man in a pilot's uniform (devilishly played by real-life ex-everything addict Andy Dick) pops up in your palm and says things like, "If doctors are so smart, why are there millions of them?"
- 3) Troy (Donald Glover) and Abed (Danny Pudi) have a true bromance. Even a sexy librarian can't come between them, especially after she disses Abed for his two-hour deconstruction of the Saw franchise. Oh, and inside Troy's briefcase: tacos.
- 4) Senor Chang (Ken Jeong) keeps four hermit crabs as pets. And one of them is named Jeff.
- 5) Pierce can moonwalk.
- 6) Sometimes, girl-girl action isn't so hot — like when it's between Britta (Gillian Jacobs) and her new friend, who each mistakenly believe the other is a lesbian.
- 7) Abed can read the messages on Sweethearts candies while blindfolded. Abed's got a point: There's gotta be a way to make money off that.
- 8) Jeff is a basketcase magnet: "What is it about me that makes broken people flock to me? Is it my height? Do huddled masses mistake me for the Statue of Liberty?"
With writing that smart, how can you not love Community?