TV Review: "Community" 6x05: "Laws of Robotics & Party Rights"

I know this one's a bit belated. I'll try to post the review for episodes 5 and 6 today to catch up.



This fifth episode (and the one after this) of Community's newest season was a prime example of why the show is entirely confusing to me as it stands. It made me laugh, there were interesting dynamics, and felt like a perfectly normal episode of the show. But I think that's my problem. The concept of the show isn't to be good in a normal way; it's to be good in a totally twisted and weird and out-there way. Hell, the intro to the third season, where they sing a song about how they're gonna be normal, and even call themselves "a mainstream dream" before what has to be the weirdest fucking season of television, made fun of exactly how weird the show purposefully is. And how few fucks it gave.

The plot of "Laws of Robotics & Party Rights" involves Greendale accepting a sum of money to let prisoners remotely attend classes; they do this though a wheeled contraption with an iPad on top. Yes, this is a cute weird idea to start, and it's used well, but it feels like this is as far as Community is willing to go right now.

This is disappointing. Remember the trailer for season five? Holy shit I went crazy over it because it promised to be season-three unique, and it was. By this point, the show is regressing to season one, when it was very good, just nothing really special (many shit shows today are at least funny). The season is halfway done and we've only had straight-forward episodes. Some have been very good, but that's not the only thing I look for in this show.

Anyway, enough entitled whining. My favorite scene involved the Dean (again) doing some ultra hardcore drama over one of the prisoner machines. It's crazy how committed Jim Rash is to his role, and I'm really glad, because he's been the best thing in many of these episodes which have, until now, completely underused the main cast (why hasn't Annie, my favorite character after Troy, done anything except look smoking in six episodes?).

We're finally treated to a dynamic about the living situation. Britta wants to throw a party but can't because Annie has some strict rules. Abed is Abed. Britta tricks Abed into throwing a massive party so it can be a cinema verité film and it completely backfires as it was expected. Though I did like this story, which made me enjoy Abed in a way that respects the character without making him annoying (filmmaker Abed is the most enjoyable Abed), this felt mostly like typical sitcom fare. No biggie.

One thing though: Annie saying "Before this is over, you will beg for my forgiveness." was both terrifying and super hot.

I'm tired of saying it but Elroy (I remembered his name!), again, didn't have anything to do.

I think the funniest bit involved one of the iPad criminals trying to intimidate (and kill) Jeff in a scene that was totally Community. Making fun of movie tropes with ridiculous scenarios and/or clever twists, then letting them play out themselves is what the show does best. Seeing the iPad just kinda pressing itself against Jeff while he hasn't even registered what's going on was great stuff.

Another episode like this: there was nothing objectively wrong with it, but it's not the kind of good I expect from the show. It made me laugh more than some of the last ones, but I'm yet to see a series highlight this season.
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About The Damn Beast

Pre-op trans-minotaur, sci-fi/fantasy/horror author, metal singer, videogame journalist, pop culture blogger. I also lift heavy things and put them down again repeatedly to occupy more space.
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