Today's featured show at the PaleyFest was NBC's Community, making it's fourth consecutive appearance. The ratings-challenged show, that is beloved by critics and rabid fans, lived up to its wacky reputation with the loosest and funniest panel yet!
In their red carpet interviews all of the actors all expertly fielded questions about the current season, the future of the series and even off-the-wall inquiries about what George Clooney smells like, which in case you're wondering, is fresh soap according to Jim Rash who plays the lovable, cross-dressing Dean Pelton.
The other panels have either showed a preview clip or an entire episode of the show before bringing out the cast and creators, but for the Community panel they decided to do a table read of this season's premiere episode. This was a real treat for fans, myself included, and set the tone for the crazy shenanigans of the night. The one notable absence was Donald Glover who plays Troy, but in true wacky Community fashion they had episode writer Andy Bobrow sit in for Troy making it twice as funny when he flubbed one of his own written lines.
The table read hit its comedic peak at the point where Jeff Winger, played by Joel McHale and Dean Pelton do an awkward tango. The effect just wasn't the same with them simply reading the lines so they came out from behind the table to re-create the scene to rapturous cheers and applause from the audience.
Between Alison Brie's recurring impersonation of a cigarette smoking little boy from the industrial age (don't ask), and the other actors going back and forth with good-natured put-downs about each other, the moderator, Mike Schneider, did get to ask about the actual show and what fans can look forward to in the future. In addition to a Freaky Friday style episode written by Rash (an Oscar winner for The Descendants), there will also be more paintball and James Brolin guest-starring as Jeff's dad.
From beginning to end the panel tonight was a barrel of laughs and I can't wait to see if The New Normal panel will be as fun tomorrow.