Community Review: Paranormal Parentage (4.02)

Overall the episode was an emotionally driven episode that will pull on some heartstrings as well as show a lot of development. The jokes are somewhat thin but when they hit they hit hard and it’s shows that the writers know what they’re doing. Attentive fans will appreciate the subtle background jokes and references that filled Paranormal Parentage. Donald Glover steals the episode with his fantastic portrayal of our favorite man boy, Troy, and walks away from the episode as the most quotable, something that last week’s episode was missing. Newcomers may feel out of the loop but for the die hard fans Paranormal Parentage is a great return to form.

Community’s halloween episodes are easily my most anticipated episode each season. It gives the study group a chance to break away from the norm, at least by Community standards, and push the boundaries even further. From acid tripping Beast Masters, a school wide zombie epidemic, or a night of revealing spooky tales, Community has taken the audience on some wild rides and the trend continues through season four.

Community Logo

The episode opens up with the group in the study room as they’re checking out each others costumes in anticipation for Vicki’s party. After some quick mingling Troy receives a call from Pierce explaining that he has locked himself in his panic room and needs to group to bail him out before they head to the party. Much to Jeff’s reluctance, the group eventually agrees to help Pierce, which leads to a very unexpected night.

I found myself enjoying this episode a lot more than I did last week’s. It was nice to be able to take a breath and slow down from the ambitious but chaotic season opener. It also helps that this episode was written by Megan Ganz, my favorite out of the Community writing staff. The episode featured a lot of great comedic exchanges between the group with some enjoyable callbacks and background humor. Troy was easily my favorite with plenty of quotable lines. I was even pleased to see the great sarcasm and wit from Britta that seemed to be lost in season 3 in lieu of more bizarre and uncharacteristic humor.  It was great to see the episode reference the unexplained but extremely hilarious hatred that Pierce has for Vicki as well.

Despite it being a Halloween episode, love was still in the air and we got to see some interesting developments in the study group relationships. Honestly, I wasn’t too thrilled about the writers pairing Troy and Britta, and although I’m still unsure about it, I liked the way they handled it. In Shirley’s words, Britta is a more modern woman, while Troy is still the innocent man boy that we’ve grown to love. It was great to see the contrast between the two personalities and even more satisfying to see the way Britta handles it. The thing that worries me the most is that the episode seemed to hint at a possible future pairing of Troy and Annie. Although the juggling of the group’s love affairs has been a reoccurring theme throughout the series I’m worried that the season will fall back into the love triangle scenarios that dominated season one. Especially since we’re starting to see the heat between Jeff and Annie pick back up.

I got to say that I was a bit caught off guard with this episode of Community. Although it was a great episode, the jokes were spread apart in this more emotionally driven episode. I was glad to see Pierce still retaining some of his growth from last season and able to show some genuine care towards a surprise guest. Even Jeff pulled on some emotional strings as the episode set up for the long awaited reunion between Jeff and his dad. I always like that they mirrored Jeff and Pierce together, and it works extremely well int his episode.

My only complaint this episode is the fact that I feel like the plot line seemed to draw a little too close to season two’s Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking. In both episodes Pierce devises an elaborate scheme to make the group appreciate his value. The only difference is that in season two’s episodes things end up in a brawl between Jeff and Pierce where as in this episode things are end up on a much lighter note. The contrast does show growth for both Pierce and Jeff so it’s easy to over look this minor complaint.

My last complaint is the fact that there seems to be something wrong with Abed. He seemed slightly irritated throughout the episode and kept to himself more than usual. I felt like the episode would shed some light on his somewhat annoyed demeanor but the audience is kept in the dark for the rest of the episode. I can only chalk it up to external factors or something that is yet to be revealed this season.

Overall the episode was an emotionally driven episode that will pull on some heartstrings as well as show a lot of development. The jokes are somewhat thin but when they hit they hit hard and it’s shows that the writers know what they’re doing. Attentive fans will appreciate the subtle background jokes and references that filled Paranormal Parentage. Donald Glover steals the episode with his fantastic portrayal of our favorite man boy, Troy, and walks away from the episode as the most quotable, something that last week’s episode was missing. Newcomers may feel out of the loop but for the die hard fans Paranormal Parentage is a great return to form.

Community airs Thursdays at 8/7c on NBC! Check out last night’s episode here on Hulu!

Interested in writing movie reviews or news posts for Thinking Cinematic? Is TV more your speed? Contact me at ThinkCinematicReviews@gmail.com! You can also send your guest reviews there too!

Connect with me at:
Twitter: @Treyrs20o9
Twitter: @Think_Cinematic
Email: ThinkCinematicReviews@Gmail.com

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One response to “Community Review: Paranormal Parentage (4.02)

  1. Pingback: Movie Monday Update Week of February 18th | Thinking Cinematic

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