Another week, another out-of-place holiday on "Community." And so it was Thanksgiving in March as the gang split into two forces. Shirley had most of them over to her house while Britta crashed Jeff's awkward Thanksgiving with his estranged father, played by James Brolin. He also met his manic and insecure half-brother Willie Jr., played by Adam DeVine ("Workaholics").
It was about as awkward an encounter as one could imagine. Jeff and his father were stoic and emotionless, while Willie was convinced that their father loved Jeff more than him. Things weren't going much better at Shirley's, where the gang spent most of the time hiding out in her garage while Abed narrated their "incarceration" like it was "The Shawshank Redemption."
The AV Club thought Brolin was well cast as Jeff's father, though they were less enthusiastic about the character of Willie, Jr. It was nothing against DeVine, but rather that his character didn't really bring anything fresh to the episode.
In the end, Jeff prepared a second Thanksgiving meal in the study room for the family that they'd all chosen. Slate loved the ending of the episode, as well as the emotional weight of Jeff's storyline. "Community" works because it can be zany and it can get serious with these characters at the same time -- and often in the same episode.
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