So Community came back, and the world rejoiced. Well, the world that I know of rejoiced. And that’s a world full of nerds.
I decided to go in and tweet about it and all that stuff, with the other nerds of course, and I must say, it was pretty neat. I hadn’t really ever had a good time tweeting before.
I know that NBC pulled it in the middle of the season because of low ratings, and I understand that. NBC is a business, and it’s got to do the sound financial thing. However, what is interesting is how Community‘s community isn’t necessarily the kind that NBC is looking for, nor is it the group that NBC is marketing to (see Richard Larson’s post about it from The Atlantic Wire here).
The people who love Community also love loving Community, and as Tim Molloy from Reuters points out: “It’s easy to forget sometimes that “Community” is a TV show as well as a thing people go insane over on Twitter.” I get it; the show is meta, and so should the praise for it.
I love that I love that Community is meta.
So I found myself talking with actors and characters and fans, all about the show (using the hashtag of #coolcoolcool was particularly rewarding and nerdy). In the end, I felt like I was in a… community.
If you think about it, there’s something really epic going on with that last statement (not the wordchoice or anything; I’m not that great of a writer). When we were cavemen and cavewomen (cavepeople sounds so horrible, by the way), we would sit around the fire and tell stories, most of the time about the epic nature of creation, myths that define our reality, and all that good stuff. Of course, that’s probably just pop-anthropology and patronization, but whatever. Those stories helped bring us together as a community of cavepeople. We were united under the banner of the great bark-god of the river (or swamp-angel).
Now we sit in our little homes, our fences as tall as we can make them, as we plug into the endless sea of narrative opportunities on television. We are disconnected from our community, but in a real way. Shows that unite around the mythical water cooler are the same stories that we’ve always cherished; now they’re filled with new actors with demigod good looks and impeccable comedic timing.
The great thing is that now we can choose what stories we use to define our relationships with those around us. I used to have a group of friends that would meet every week to watch Survivor. They had a betting pool, they did weekly potlucks, and they even had a collective camping trip one year. That’s taking the good out of some show and building something great around it.
And I felt that in a small but real way yesterday.
I now have to go watch some Inspector Space Time.