Community: Alternative History of the German Invasion Season 4 Episode 4 Review

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A German invasion takes over Greendale this week.  Too bad it’s so poorly executed.

The episode begins well enough, with the gang getting used to their new history class.  Their professor (played by an underused Malcolm McDowell) invites his students to look at historic battles from multiple angles.  Don’t just view things from the victor’s perspective, try to look at the vanquished side as well.  Remember the German-exchange students from last season’s foosball episode?  Well, they’re back…sort of.  The brother of the original group’s leader is back with a new posse and is ready to take on Jeff and his friends.  There are some funny moments in the classroom involving maniacal laughter and a German version of The Nanny, but unfortunately things soon take a turn for the worst.

The Germans “invade” the gang’s study space and refuse to give it back, causing the Greendale Seven to make use of some alternative learning rooms.  After an elaborate plan to incriminate the German’s for celebrating Oktoberfest on school grounds, everything is set back to normal…or is it?  As the gang makes a triumphant stride back to their beloved table, they’re confronted by an angry mob.  It turns out they were the villains in this situation all along.  I enjoyed the flashbacks to previous episodes–the bottle episode where Annie loses her pen, the Dungeons & Dragons episode–but other than that this whole story kind of fell flat.  There were too many German/Nazi jokes and the resolution of the gang making Greendale a better place felt very cheesy.

Meanwhile, the B-plot of tonight was equally as disappointing.  Chang returns to Greendale under the supervision of a psychiatrist who claims his “Changnesia”  has caused him to totally block out the events of last season.  As the Dean works to prove him wrong, he realizes that Chang, sorry, Kevin, is remorseful and might be telling the truth.  Chang might have been vastly overused in seasons past, but he’s much more effective as a villain than as a normal guy.  This plotline offered almost no humor, save for a few quick one-liners from the Dean that caused me to chuckle.

That’s really the problem with this episode.  During the few moments that I found to be generally funny, I only chuckled.  For a show that used to offer a twisted blend of groundbreaking humor, things certainly have changed.  I still am routing for the Greendale Seven to make a return to form, but with more episodes like this I can’t see that happening anytime soon.  Grade: C+

By Mike Papirmeister

One Response to Community: Alternative History of the German Invasion Season 4 Episode 4 Review

  1. Eddie says:

    I liked the German episode; sure it wasn’t the best, but I think it’s been the best of the new season so far, and the one that felt most like Original Community. I work at DISH and had a few of my coworkers over to watch, and they all really enjoyed it, too. However, when I watch a show in a group, I tend to miss a few things, so I’m going to re-watch it tonight after work. My DISH Hopper records everything that airs during primetime on the four major networks, so it’ll be waiting on my DVR when I get home!

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