This show just gets better with time. While its debut episode fell short of a laugh or two, it quickly regained its footing with every subsequent episode thereafter. They're doing a fine job of giving us the sparknotes version of all the characters' background info. I'm sure (or hope) that I am not alone in this, but I feel in the absurdly short 7 episodes so far, I know these characters like I've known a good friend.
And it's surprising, too. Aside from the obvious veteran Mr. Chase and silver screen-donning, runaway-hit-master Mr. Jeong, the entire cast is made up of people who, at first glance, are the kind of people you see in a TV show one day, and say, "lolwut."
First we have Mr. McHale; while a pseudo-celebrity in his own rights, in between wise-cracks and delightfully bad wordplay I often find myself realizing, "oh, he was that guy on The Soup." I mean, we all knew he could talk himself silly, but playing a male lead on a prime-time sitcom? Didn't see that one coming. And I'm sure glad I didn't. Dude's funny as all hell, and a wonderful surprise too.
And the lady from those whatever-they-are commercials? When I first heard she was cast for a role on the show, I actually dropped to my knees and prayed to the TV gods, "Pleeaase make her do something more than shout out ethnic catchphrases and do the snappy-finger-thing every episode." Well, turns out I've been rewarded by the powers that be. (side note: Seriously? You answer this one and you can't keep Dollhouse alive? PRIORITIZE PLZ!) While placed in the backseat by the relentless back-n-forth humor-table-tennis match of her more "comedic" contemporaries for a few episodes, she really shined in the last few.
Which then brings me Abed and Troy, played by the hilarious Mr. Pudi and Mr. Glover, respectively. These two manage to crush and disfigure the ol' straight-man - funny-man comedy duo formula, give it re-constructive surgery, add a few rocket launchers and laser eye beams, and blast away anything that laughs within a screen-view's radius. I can't possibly be the only one here that watched every derrick comedy sketch on youtube and always wondered how those dudes (esp. Mr. Glover, mind you.) would fair in a real TV show. And I absolutely love watching Troy, and you can sometimes see/feel the underlying presence of his past derrick comedy characters (Anyone notice he sometimes evokes the "Mad Hatter" character?) and it adds to my laugh-o-meter.
The other two girls? Yeah, they're cute/mildly attractive, slightly neurotic, with a hint of flirty (at times). They work. Nothin' broken, but we can use something of more substance. And if the show's short, yet prominent, track record is any proof, it'll happen. I trust that it will.
This is one of those shows that really seems "in tune" with the rest of us. Although the set design is more reminiscent of a crappy early 90's middle school pre-teen drama rather than a community college. Honestly, have these people even been inside an actual college? If I see a scene with hallway lockers, I'm gonna punch something. Though, in all seriousness (is it too late for that yet?) what the set direction lacks in communique of "THIS IS A COMMUNITY COLLEGE" the dialog and storyline seems to adequately supplement this otherwise eye-sore of a show. But I ain't complainin' as long as the funny don't stop comin'.
4.6 Token-Middle-Eastern-slash-Indian characters out of 5.
Now if you'll excuse me, I have more drugs to consume. Happy Watchin'