I know that the last thing the internet needs is more Community boosterism, but I can’t help it because I’m so happy about it! Here’s the information you need on this development if you’re uninitiated, courtesy of the incomparable Bill Carter. And this is for if you’re a superfan:

I’ll be the first to admit that the show, while brilliant, is not for everyone. I remember talking to people who were just completely baffled that Arrested Development didn’t become a huge hit, but that didn’t surprise me. After all, it’s about a bunch of unlikable rich jerks that’s filled with cutaway gags (which are now everywhere but weren’t at the time), tons of self-referentialism, and (perhaps most importantly) it’s hard to follow the stories when you’re paying half-attention. I loved it, but the idea that if it stuck around long enough it would pick up a following struck me as unlikely. Community isn’t necessarily any of those things (aside from self-referential), but it presumes a certain level of pop culture literacy and a willingness to go with its conceits that might not be there. I can see why some wouldn’t bother, but it’s one of those things that speaks to me somehow, it’s hard to explain. It’s noted for its parodies, but really it’s an inversion of your typical sitcom, where the setting is mundane and the characters are zany and unrealistic. In Community, the setting is fluid but the characters are what ground it.

Of course, I’m aware that this is yet another culty thing that I’m into, but I write that off by arguing that if you enjoy personal, creative, interesting artistic experiences, there’s no way to avoid culty things. There was a time when stuff like that achieved big, mainstream success. But for the past 30 years or so, pop culture has leaned heavily toward the disposable, and while I am always overjoyed when something unusual and good becomes popular, I just know you can’t count on that happening. This is why, incidentally, I’m not a hipster, as I’m always happy to see, I don’t know, Arcade Fire find success. Hipsterism is fundamentally about selfishness, it’s wanting to have all these amazing experiences that are completely your own, and other people being in on them somehow ruins them. It’s about validating your own specialness, really. Me, I’m just someone who’s looking for meaningful culture out there. And it’s still around, if you know where to look.

Lev filed this under: , ,  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *