And so the gang is back with a bang! After a mini-cliff hanger last season when Pierce left the group, they brought him back into the group without the audience’s expense in a nice way. The musical intro was funny, having the cast members sing that this year they’re going to be normal with no shenanigans that turned out to be Jeff’s daydream.
Pierce comes back to the group a with new “evolved” personality but Jeff doesn’t like that, as he hates Pierce with every bit of his body. So Jeff does what he does naturally to manipulate the group saying they’ve evolved as well, saying they are “true friends” who “don’t need to be in the same class.”
Well this back fires, causing Jeff to get kicked out of class and the study group, which he soon realizes the cold, Chang-filled world out there and proceeds to get back into the group. The story worked because Pierce took the blame for all of this, as he saw Jeff had a hard time being the bad guy then he did. Eventually Jeff does get back into class and the study group, while learning to hate Pierce a little less.
There were two highlights in the episode in my opinion. The first was the verbal smack down the new Vice Dean gave played by actor John Goodman which was hilarious as his air conditioning company is funding the whole school, which will set up an interesting storyline down the road. The other was a clever play on British television shows after Abed learns that his favorite show Cougartown got moved to mid-season and needed a new series for his television void. Britta introduced well-timed laughs with shows “Cougarton Abbey” and the Doctor Who series “Inspector Spacetime.”
Another bright spot I would like to point out is I ‘m pretty sure when Jeff went unconscious in the vents, his dream was a nod to the 2001: A Space Odyssey node which I found hilarious, especially the table with its “magically powers”.
This would be a successful series premiere as it brought the group back together, introduced new characters which I hope will lead to great story arcs throughout the season, and Chang has a new position at the school as the security guard.
My only complaint is I wish they would stop using Britta as the “buzz killer” of the group, as I think it is a tiring joke on a character that hinders character growth as they did it routinely in Season 2. Otherwise, Cheers to a new season of Community!