Community recap: Changensia is dumb but it has a cool documentary

Tonight we focus on Kevin and his Changensia. (Side note: I wouldn’t actually mind a book on how to wear a hat.) Downside: This episode is about Chang. But upside: It’s an episode about Chang as seen through the lens of an Abed Nadir–produced documentary. I think it’ll be more pro than con. Let’s wait and see.

Changnesia is even worse than amnesia, turns out. You forget stuff but can still make puns. And also turns out that curing Chang could be lucrative for Greendale. There’s a grant from the MacGuffin Neurological Institute up for grabs if Abed and his film can plead their case for a cure. (Take it away, Wikipedia!)

And so begins Changnesia, the Hoop Dreams of something people care about. (I never saw Hoop Dreams. I did see that other basketball movie that I always think was called Hoop Dreams. The one about Jim Carroll? With Leonardo DiCaprio? Where he has sex with the twins who play the Wakefield sisters in Sweet Valley High? Basketball Diaries! Right, okay. What were we talking about?)

Abed wants to make a real documentary, not some propaganda fluff piece for the dean. Jeff doesn’t care either way, because he hates Chang and they are clearly being conned. (Side note II, Electric Boogaloo: What’s with the weird plaque/box thing in the background with a coat of arms on it?)

Wide-eyed Annie Edison isn’t so sure that Kevin is bad. He’s so sweet and innocent—and the customers love him over at the SS shop. I mean over at Hoagie’s (&) Heroes. Kidding! I mean over at Shirley’s Sandwiches, where Kevin is the most popular employee around. Who knows, maybe he really has chang-ed. (JK, I’m totes with Jeff here. This is a scam.)

Oh, wait, Jeff’s come around. He’s been acting like a jerk—maybe everybody’s right and he should give Chang a chan(g)ce. (I’ll stop.) I suspect a scam within a scam, but let’s see. Oh, wait, yep, that was fast. Winger’s going to expose Chang for the fraud that he is. TWIST!

Ooh, new AT&T 4G commercial with a different group of kids! What would the animals be made out of?! (Need a life. Noted.)

Jeff’s plan: Pierce should host the MacGuffin reception (no doubt disqualifying the gang from the grant with his blackface Señor Wences routine). Annie’s on research, poised to unearth Kevin’s hellish past to play for sympathy bucks (but really to unwittingly reveal Chang’s scam using the forensic prowess Abed imagined for her in his alternate sitcom universe along with the help of her partner, Partner). Britta and Shirley are on video recon slash therapy via aggressive Britta-ing.

Trout police! Good Houlihan, bad Partner. Canine Kevin. Turns out, hold the phone, Chang was the victim of some (very mild) false imprisonment (i.e. employment?) and named after a dog? (Still skeptical, but less so. I’m confused. I don’t want to live in a world where Chang is right and Winger is wrong.)

Time for the reception. BSW and his Asian wife garner surprisingly little reaction for two characters playing to an audience stocked with both blacks and Asians. Racist puppets don’t rankle them, but Jeff does. He’s decided to jog Chang’s memory in a sequence I found so confusing I had to watch it twice: There’s this super-hot broad Alessandra. She was married to Chang. Jeff found her because Britta Brittaed the camera and left it running for hours in Shirley’s shop, accidentally catching footage of Chang dialing one phone number again and again but always hanging up. And that proved…I don’t know. Something. (And I haven’t even had that much wine.) So much twisty trickery. (Oh wait, is this part of the MacGuffin?) I mean, I guess I know what’s happening: Chang can’t help calling his hot ex-wife. (No doy, look at her.) That, (sort of confusingly) implies Jeff, proves that Chang is lying about not remembering who he is. But Chang’s playing it off (with a convoluted story about finding Alessandra’s number in the vent) like some post-traumatic impulse. And Alessandra and the gang translate all of this to mean that Jeff’s an asshole and Kevin is great. Oh, I barely care about any of it. Oh! Jeff is making out with Alessandra. I do not mind watching this. Abed’s squirmy. Everybody hate Jeff.

Grant granted!

Kevin’s a big man on campus, and Jeff’s a pariah. But Kev is a generous guy, and he’s willing to let chang-gones be chang-gones. Friendship restart. (Egg whites and other nondescript white food on Jeff’s plate. Nice touch.)

Oh, nope. Chang is evil. And working for some nefarious unknown entity. So sick of this guy.

Le sigh.

Until next week, Human Beings, when, if Kevin is back, I hope I have a case of Changnesia.

Watch the full Community episode below!


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Carla Sosenko

Carla Sosenko is a writer and editor from Brooklyn, N.Y. Her work has appeared in Marie Claire, Self, Jezebel, The Hairpin, The NY International Fringe Festival and some other places. She received her MFA in creative writing from Emerson College, where she majored in choppy sentences. Carla thanks you for reading her words and kindly asks you to read more of them at Follow her @carlasosenko. She thinks you rule.

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