‘Community’ deserves to live

If you’re not watching “Community” … why not?

If you pay attention to the comings and goings of TV shows, you might have heard that NBC has put its Thursday night comedy, “Community,” on hold for the foreseeable future. Maybe the show will come back after the first of the year. Maybe not until spring. Who knows?

Chances are this news doesn’t mean much to you. By virtue of the fact that “Community” is in danger of being canceled, it’s pretty obvious that the ratings are the suck.

So here’s a plea: Check the show out. It airs tonight — in just a few minutes, actually — but is available on demand and online.

Maybe an uptick in ratings will help convince NBC to put the show back on the air.

Why is “Community” worth saving?

Well, it’s funny, for one thing. But more than that, it’s offbeat. It is not your typical, laugh-track driven comedy.

Case in point: The recent third season episode “Remedial Chaos Theory,” in which the cast — misfit students at a community college — roll the dice to see who will answer the door when pizza is delivered and find themselves exploring several alternate realities. Any episode that includes a “fake goatee” nod to “Star Trek” without ever quite ‘fessing up to it gets my vote for funny and innovative.

Or the first-season episode about a campus-wide paintball game in which the participants quickly degenerated into cutthroat competitors. The episode mined every possible action movie cliche for big laughs.

Or the episode where the group manned a Kentucky Fried Chicken-themed spaceflight simulator. Or the episode that’s animated like an old Christmas special. Or the fake clip show!

Don’t be put off by what some might consider the oddball cast and plots. It’s a comedy about disparate types thrown together by circumstance, like “Friends” or “Seinfeld,” and it’s funny. And the cast is wonderful: Joel McHale, Chevy Chase, Danny Pudi and the adorable Alison Brie to name a few.

Here’s hoping “Community” gets a second chance. Like the “alternative realities” episode, there’s got to be a few possibilities left in the show’s future.

 

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