Community Episode 21: "Contemporary American Poultry" Review


During this first season, Community had made subtle nods to film genres like the buddy cop movie or the disaster flick, but this time out, there was no subtlety at all. This episode was one long homage to Goodfellas, Martin Scorsese's mafia film from 1990. But instead of dealing in cigarettes, liquor or drugs, the Spanish study group's currency was chicken fingers.


Just as Goodfellas told the story of the rise and fall of the Lucchese crime family via Henry Hill's voice-overs, "Contemporary American Poultry" was narrated by Abed, who detailed the study group's seizing control of the college cafeteria (and its supply of delicious chicken fingers), as if he were explaining the Lufthana heist or the demise of the Copacabana nightclub. Even though Jeff Winger is the central character on Community, I really liked that this episode was told from Abed's point of view, seeing as he's the pop culture encyclopedia on the show. He got things started early on with the best line of the night, "As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be in a mafia movie." Danny Pudi was able to mimic Ray Liotta's cadence and he hit all the same beats, while still maintaining the uncomfortable detachment that makes his character so unique.


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