Community Season 4 Review “Paranormal Parentage”

(NOTE: Due to celebrating Valentine’s Day being last night, I wasn’t able to get my review for last night’s Community up in time. I hope you will forgive me, and read on for the full belated review!)

Following a somewhat underwhelming season premiere last week, Community returned tonight with the slightly improved “Paranormal Parentage”, as our study group tackles a spooky haunted house! Originally supposed to air on October 26th, it was a little odd seeing the gang dressed up in their Halloween best considering it’s a solid three and a half months from that holiday. I guess that’s going to be a recurring theme this season, though. I can’t wait for them to celebrate Christmas in April!

Community has had a couple great Halloween episodes before, with season two’s “Epidemiology” being my favorite, and season three’s “Horror Fiction in Seven Spooky Steps” being a close second. Those two episodes were send-ups of zombie movies and horror short-stories respectively, so it was nice for them to handle a completely different trope tonight with the classic haunted house setting. The Pierce manor offered a few good laughs, with the “Indoor swing” being an appropriately creepy highlight, but it was all of the great interaction between the study group that really set the episode apart.

Jeff is still dealing with serious daddy issues, and wannabe-therapist Britta is here to help in her ham costume! After seeing in the season three finale that he was looking for his father, we get confirmation tonight that he’s actually found him! Tonight’s episode was written by Megan Ganz, and she’s said that she has a strong interest in reuniting Jeff with the estranged William Winger. I’m interested to see what will happen when these two finally meet, but I’m even more excited to see James Brolin’s portrayal of Jeff’s daddy! We’ll see these two together in the upcoming Thanksgiving episode, and I can’t wait!

Meanwhile, we find out that the mysterious figure that’s been haunting pierce is none other than his half-brother Gilbert, played by Breaking Bad and Revolution‘s Giancarlo Esposito! He still didn’t really explain why he put on a creepy hood and stood over Pierce’s bed, but whatever. He’s going to be Pierce’s roommate going forward, so I hope this means we’ll see more of him in the future! That is if his Revolution schedule will allow it!

Overall I found tonight’s episode to be definitely entertaining, but not quite reaching the heights of the three Halloween episodes to come before it. It will definitely be interesting to see if this fourth season ever reaches the level of hilarity we’ve enjoyed over these last three seasons. I’m hoping it does, but we haven’t seen it so far.

Random Thoughts:

– I’m glad the opening credit sequence hasn’t been altered to remove Harmon’s name, but has it always listed Jim Rash among the regular cast members?

– You can have the funniest writers and the best dialogue in the world, but none of the jokes tonight made me laugh more than Donald Glover’s expression while he was on the “Indoor swing”.

– Man I would have loved to see the walk-in cereal closet! It’s possible that’s just what Troy called the pantry, but if it really was a cereal closet I would have loved it!