I've just read quite a number of great and insightful comments here on this episode and have little to add to what was already said. I do want to point out that the intro music they used was a really smart blend of the intro music for both shows. It's really the Community theme, but done in L&O style. Maybe somebody else can articulate it better, but that was really something else! The attention to detail in this episode was just so amazing! And I am an L&O fan. :)
Community this time parodied Law And Order , and it hit the mark.The show proceeded in the exact manner courtroom-crime drama shows do ,but the comedy part was ever present.Community's innovative approach to presentation is definitely its strongest point.
Any fan of Law & Order and Community cannot give this piece of anthology less than 10. It looked so much like a L&O episode. The director, editor and crew have to be commended for this accomplishment. The casting was perfect. Troy and Abed as the detectives may have been no-brainers, but still they did everything right. The "Why do they always have to run" bit was classic. I have to say I didn't mind less Britta and Pierce.
While others may feel it felt too much like L&O and not enough like Community, I prefer Community when it goes all-out parody. They do it so well, that I feel sometimes shorted, like there's something missing during "regular" episodes.
Community's homage to Law & Order abundantly reveals why the show is so beloved. Playing like an episode from Law & Order, yet ground firmly in the fact that they are not police not is the place a courtroom, the story flows brilliantly with an unexpected 'murder'. What follows are twists, turns, interrogations, court scenes, 'NOT police' business and basically awesomeness. Troy and Abed shine as the two L&O detectives that do the leg work, each trying to be the cooler one, trying to throw the final zinger. Jeff and Annie are also great in their roles as lawyers, while Michael K Williams particularly shines. Overall, this is the standard of comedy and plot that we have come to expect from the Community team and is a fine addition to an already great show. The only flaw that could be perceived was the lack of involvement of Pierce (Chevy Chase) in the episode. His character seemed deliberately denigrated to the sidelines as a bookie whom Troy and Abed pry for information.
The ending is swift and deliberate, characteristic of L&O, and we have to wait and see how this will shape up as the rest of the series unfolds.
I'm not saying that you need to necessarily be an expert on Law and Order to truly appreciate this episode, but I will say that not being a huge fan of the show may marr the viewing experience. I've seen maybe two or three episodes of the show over its long run, and while its enjoyable, it never became must-see TV for me. Community decided to take on the show and pay it homage, and while it was as funny the way Community usually is, some parts felt a little too straight-forward to me.
I will say this: there were dozens of individual moments that stood out and made me laugh out loud. I really enjoyed Abed and Troy as the two detectives that tend to make up most Law and Order shows, and the return of Todd made for some good laughs (considering the gang hates his guts for whatever reason). The Dean was absolutely hilarious, and I'm really glad that the show upped Jim Rash to series regular. He's added a lot to the third season. And how can I really complain about an episode where Michael K Williams, the guy who played Omar in The Wire, actually QUOTES Omar by saying "A man's gotta have a code." It was one of those jokes that Community does so well: blink and you'll miss it.
As much as I enjoyed the episode on a humor level, sometimes, the show indulged in the qualities that I don't like in the Law and Order series so much: the slow investigation, the scenes that don't add anything necessarily to the episode... and while the twist in the final moments of the episode is interesting, it's so serious that it felt like a completely different show for a second. I suppose this is the point of paying homage to Law and Order, but at the same time, it didn't feel enough like the Community I've come to love.
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