On the Telly: "Community," "Cougar Town" and "Dance Moms"

By Craig D. Lindsey
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Dec. 31, 2013

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Somehow, the forever on-the-bubble "Community" has not only made it to a fifth season, but series creator Dan Harmon has returned to run the show.

Thursdays, 8pm, NBC
Captive audience: Nerds, geeks and people who seriously want to forget about last season.
Moment of truth: Somehow, someway, this forever on-the-bubble cult sitcom has not only made it to a fifth season, but series creator Dan Harmon has returned to run the show after getting fired before the mixed fourth season. Harmon basically reboots the show, as graduate-turned-teacher Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) and his study-group buddies (sans the cranky Chevy Chase, who briefly shows up in the opener) go back to their alma mater to give this community-college thing one last try. More cynical than in previous seasons, the show nevertheless returns to its zany, original, pop-culture-obsessed form.
Emmy or phlegmmy: Emmy.

Cougar Town
Tuesdays, 10pm, TBS
Captive audience: Scrubs fans, middle-aged folk and young dudes with a thing for older ladies.
Moment of truth: Here’s another sitcom that a lot of folk didn’t think would make it to a fifth season (mainly because ABC canceled it at the end of its third). Courteney Cox, all Botoxed and boobalicious, and her cast of wine-guzzling pals return to booze it up and engage in suburban shenanigans. God help me, I’m beginning to like this goofy-ass show, which is filled with the sort of light-but-enjoyably-screwball humor expected from a single-camera, Bill Lawrence production. Then again, it can also be because Cox looks like she’s so ready to pursue a career in MILF porn. 
Emmy or phlegmmy: Emmy.

Dance Moms
Wednesdays, 9pm, Lifetime
Captive audience: Stage moms, failed dancers and people who just love watching women psychologically torture children.
Moment of truth: So, there’s this horrendous lady named Abby Lee Miller who runs a dance studio for young girls. She basically mindfucks these girls into becoming a competitive dance team. Off to the side are the girls’ mothers, who are just as loud, obsessed and utterly horrible as the dance instructor. Here’s the kicker: This is all part of a reality show that’s been on the air for three seasons! And, as they go into a fourth, which has Miller constantly reminding the girls every five minutes that they can be replaced in the season opener, the most shocking thing is that no one has shut her down for child abuse.
Emmy or phlegmmy: Phlegmmy.

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