NBC’s ‘Community’ not as funny or original as ‘CTRL’

NBC’s new sitcom “Community,” which premieres tonight, Thursday Sept. 17, is about a motley crew thrown together by happenstance at a community college. <P></P> <P>Like The Soup, this show is a nice vehicle to show the nimble wit of Joel McHale as a lawyer, Jeff Winger, who lied about his education and now must go to a real American community college. </P> <P>The title comes from Greendale Community College, the scene of the ensemble.</P> <P>McHale must get his law license back by obtaining a real college degree.  His scenes with The Daily Show’s John Oliver are genuine and have that elusive comedic chemistry. That’s a big plus.</P> <P>This is McHale’s year, fast-tracking from "The Soup" and TV guest spots on "Will & Grace," "CSI: Miami" and, most recently, "Pushing Daisies."  He also jumped onto the big screen with roles in "Spider-Man 2," "Lords of Dogtown" and "The Informant!"</P> <OBJECT id=W4727a250e66f97234ab14fc64ccee54b type=application/x-shockwave-flash height=283 width=384 data=http://widgets.nbc.com/o/4727a250e66f9723/4ab14fc64ccee54b/4741e3c5156499a7/cf1d79e7/-cpid/c517767bd6309665></OBJECT> <P>In "Community," Spanish professor Señor Chang is played by Ken Jeong, which leads to Winger cooking up a private Spanish study session with a hot co-ed Britta, played by Gillian Jacobs, setting up the series premise as an cast of characters crashes Winger’s fantasy study date.</P> <P>This impromptu ensemble includes Chevy Chase as Pierce Hawthorne, a clueless seven-times divorced older member of the group; Yvette Nicole Brown as strong-willed divorcee Shirley; a stand out Danny Pudi as Abed, compulsive and hyper-verbal; Alison Brie as Annie, who has perfectionism issues, and Donald Glover as Troy, a glory days recovering jock.</P> <P>Only seeing one episode, "Community" feels like an extended webisode, in fact, I wish NBC had put the money and effort into fleshing out their <A href="http://www.nbc.com/ctrl/"><STRONG>"CTRL"</STRONG></A> starring Tony Hale, a genuinely funny and original webbie comedy into a full-on series, and teased out "Community" as a webbie initially until the writers had more grist for their characters to flex their chops.  </P> <OBJECT id=W4727a250e66f97234aa944df69e1a5f8 type=application/x-shockwave-flash height=283 width=384 data=http://widgets.nbc.com/o/4727a250e66f9723/4aa944df69e1a5f8/4741e3c5156499a7/68188a62/-cpid/ea94518126921dd1></OBJECT>Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.

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