These past three weeks of Community have seen a rise in consistent quality and it seems that the new staff has finally found their stride. Economics of Marine Biology is a simple episode but it easily feels like a season one era episode.
The episode opens up with the gang, minus Pierce, in the study room as they’re discussing the possible recruitment of a new wealthy student. If they can land the metaphorical whale, Greendale will be financially set to fund its other classes. Meanwhile Shirley and Troy attend their first P.E. class only to find out that things aren’t what they seem.
Economics of Marine Biology featured a very steady stream of jokes per minute that kept the episode very fast paced. I found myself bursting out with laughter more in this episode than I have in the other six. All of the comedic timings were on point and the jokes they made were landing. It had a nice season one vibe that focused a lot of the story on campus. The episode starts off great and only gathers steam from there.
Plot wise things were very simple and somewhat silly. The lengths at which the Dean and Annie go to ensure that the new student enrolls is funny but it the premise seems a bit stretched. It’s always nice to see the Dean and Annie working together though and the two actors more than make up for the silliness.
Season two and definitely season three began the separation of Community from Greendale and with it meant less class focused episodes. Economics of Marine Biology brought us right back to the classroom with Troy and Shirley. The two enrolled in a P.E. class only to find out that the class was actually a Physical Education Education class. This premise screams season one of Community and led to some enjoyable performances from both Yvette and Donald. The resolution was a bit cringe worthy though, ending in a montage and song that just didn’t do it for me.
Pierce and Jeff get some much needed story time, something that hasn’t been touched on for quite sometime. I always liked the idea of Pierce becoming the father Jeff never had but it seems like the plot has been ditched over the years. Pierce’s comedy does seem to rely a little too much on racial humor, which kind of took me away from the story. However I liked the overall direction of their story and it definitely made me remember the Pierce I’m going to miss after this season’s over.
Overall, Economics of Marine Biology had a very season one vibe flowing throughout the episode. The episode has very steady stream of jokes per minute, something other episodes this season have lacked. The Dean and Annie’s plot of ensuring the enrollment of a wealthy student is funny but the premise feels a bit stretched. Jeff and Pierce also get some great screen and helped remind me of the Pierce I’m going to miss.
As a future note, next week’s episode of Community is a rerun so there will be no new Community review next week.
Community airs Thursdays at 8/7c on NBC! Check out last night’s episode here on Hulu!
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