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Things aren't exactly right on this latest Community set, but this box set isn't without its oddball charms....
Sony / 218 Minutes / 2013 / Unrated / Street Date: August 6, 2013
Defiantly, often brilliant odd, Community on this Complete Fourth Season set is frequently compulsively enjoyable. Consistency is perhaps not the name of the game here - for every time the show nails it, it swings and misses a few - but Community couples a crazy narrative drive with refreshingly smart undercurrents: it may relish in its status as a dumbass show, but there seems to always be at least a handful of motivations behind its zany tacks.
I mean, you have Chevy Chase going full on idle (always a treat), and the magnificent on-screen chemistry between Yvette Nicole Brown and Joel McHale is often thrilling - they constantly exploit the push/pull of their warm yet prickly relationship to increasingly hilarious extents. Then, of course, you have the BFFs at the side of the stage - Donald Glover and Danny Pudi - who careen the series off into even more pop-culture-referential and alternate-reality fun.
This particular compilation of episodes isn’t exactly as enjoyable as TV-on-DVD sets past – show-runner Dan Harmon was replaced by David Guarascio and Moses Port this time around – but die-hard Community fans don’t stick around for the easy laughs – those of us intrigued by the series rely on its idiosyncratic nature far more than any overall narrative strength. Community won't blow your mind with every new gag, but if you find yourself on the show's wavelength, you're guaranteed at least one good belly laugh per episode here, and in this current land of ho-hum television, that's high praise, indeed.