After a disappointing 4th season, Community needed a fresh start that viewers would enjoy. With Dan Harmon's return, they the showmakers crafted an almost perfect return.
This past Thursday, viewers were delighted to see their favorite gang of collegiate misfits back together. NBC’s Community began its 5th season on the network, with Jeff Winger at the helm of the beloved study group. Unlike previous season openers, the first episode of the series’ two-episode opening night was more focused to reacquainting viewers with the reasons we love the show: the cast of characters that make Greendale what it is. In the first episode, aptly titled “Repilot,” Jeff is fresh off of a failure despite getting his degree from Greendale. He returns to the school to find his study group counterparts – Brita, Annie, Shirley, Troy, and Abed (RIP Pierce) – and tries to convince the five that they should sue the college for damages, as it has made their lives more difficult in terms of sustaining a professional career. As usual, Jeff’s plan falls through (with the help of some convincing by the dean), but not without him getting stuck in the Greendale vortex yet again – this time as a faculty member. The season opener served as a great reminder of why we love Community and provided a solid setting for the rest of the season.
In the second episode, “Introduction to Teaching,” Jeff gets a look into the faculty fun that is being a professor at Greendale – the lounge, the union-sanctionized and diminished relationship with the dean, and the usage of the minus in the grading system. Jeff’s officemate, Buzz Hickey (Jonathan Banks, in an unusually nice role to contrast his work as Mike on Breaking Bad), gives him the full tour of faculty living and mistreats a couple students along the way. This leads Jeff to realize how awful the people at Greendale can be and that he needs to change it. Thus, the Student-Teacher Save Greendale Committee was born – an extension of the study group that will presumably last the season. Meanwhile, the rest of the study group – Abed in particular – is caught up in their newest class: “Nicholas Cage: Good or Bad?” It's pretty self explanatory, and a question you should consider. This is classic Community and definitely reassures viewers that with creator Dan Harmon back at the helm, there is more like this to come during the 5th season.
Community opened its season on a strong note, reassuring us that while many mistakes were made last season, this one will right them. Be sure to catch more of the episodes on NBC, Thursday nights at 8:00 p.m.