I wondered how the writers would eke out a two-parter from last week's story, and this was the answer: a half-hour long joke, spooking the Civil War documentary style of filmmaker Ken Burns (who I'm not familiar with, so some of the jokes probably sailed over my head). But in the main, this was a brilliantly constructed spoof with some very funny moments as Troy (Donald Glover) and Abed's (Danny Pudi) war between Blanketsburg and Pillowtown escalated across the college, although I grew bored of the one-note joke halfway through and ultimately don't think it was a very necessary way to conclude last week's episode—which was far less ambitious, yet superior in many ways.
Maybe I'm just spoofed-out when it comes to Community these days, and I'm itching for something more grounded and semi-realistic. The show's flights of fancy can be inspired, but too many and they become routine.
I don't really have else to say, beyond the fact that Chevy Chase was notably absent (right?) and given the much-publicised events behind-the-scenes recently, I'm starting to wonder if the writers resent having to give Pierce something to do on the show, or if Chase just wasn't involved for a more innocent reason. After all, the episode was also pretty light on Annie (Alison Brie) and Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown) appearances, too.
This was fun episode worth watching because of the amusingly dry Keith David (The Cape) narration and excellent direction from the UK's own Tristram Shapeero, but it's hardly essential and a strange way to end last week's story.
written by Andy Bobrow / directed by Tristram Shapeero / 5 April 2012 / NBC