Thursday, February 24, 2011

Abed's Next Side Adventure on 'Community' Should Be A Romantic One!...

Abed Nadir continues to inspire me.

The resident pop culture expert on Community (and my own pop culture soulmate) is a little bit socially awkward, sure. He may not be the most intelligent person in the bunch; he's attending a community college, and we're still not quite sure if that was because of his grades or lack of funds, but considering we just learned he had to repeat a grade in elementary school, I'm going to assume the former.

But his ability to consistently read people is proof positive that he is always paying attention, and he is smart where it counts the most: in insights and instincts. And most importantly, he is always looking for a way to connect with people, whether it means learning all about the things they like so he can reference them or charting their cycles so he can avoid a hormonal outrage. Everything he does is with the best intentions, and he is a genuine observer of the human condition.

For better and for worse, I like to think that we are similar in all of those ways, too.

Honestly, though, to most people Abed (Danny Pudi) probably seems a little bit weird. His study group accused him of that early on in the series, before they got know him and embraced the oddities. And while the show has established that girls are always intrigued by him, they have yet to show him actually dating. Sure, in the Valentine's Day episode he pursued a girl, but in super strange ways, such as watching her from around the corner in the library (where she works) and yelling "Books!" out-loud every few minutes. Hardly a way to have a relationship!

But tonight he made a connection no one really saw coming when a Secret Service agent came to Greendale to sweep for potential terror threats before the Vice President's arrival. She noticed him from across a room; he noticed her. Then they proceeded to do this very specific dance around each other. She racially profiled him for an excuse to go through his room to learn more about him; he dropped a threatening bit of knowledge on live (if cable access) television to ensure she stuck around "surveilling" him. In a weird way, they even had an odd first date when he watched a movie in his dorm, and she watched him watching the movie from a van across the street.


But in all seriousness, Abed is a character that many in the mainstream don't see as relationship material, and that is just another way in which I relate to him. He knows who he is; he is more than comfortable with who he is; and he doesn't have any desire to change who he is just to get someone to like him. So far the show pretty much just ignored any romantic side to him; it's not really on the forefront of his mind (another reason he's one of the most unique characters on television, by the way), and they're smart enough not to force it just for "shipping" sake. Besides, they have more than enough characters with relationship drama of their own, and Abed's bromance with Troy (Donald Glover) is ripe with story lines of its own.

But he deserves a relationship (if he wants one, of course), and as the viewing public, we deserve to see what that relationship would look like. Abed is like no other character on television (in the best possible way), and so neither will his relationship. It would be unconventional, maybe even a little asexual, and amazing all because of it.

They say there are only so many stories in the world, and I don't doubt that is true. But there are so many variations and permutations on how to tell those very common stories. And I just know that Abed would find the most fascinating way to go about "courting" or, you know, dating. Even if to him it seems so mundane and ordinary because it's just his way; he's just doing what seems natural to him.

And seeing him find a seemingly perfect match in that Secret Service agent in "Intro to Political Science" opened a new side to him-- one that you didn't even realized you missed until it was suddenly right in front of you. I imagine that's how Abed himself must have felt, especially because all he knows he sees in film and television, and he isn't exactly a romantic comedy connoisseur. But seeing it suddenly a very real possibility for Abed (even for a mere twenty-two minutes because Eliza Coupe has a show of her own to star in come April) kind of reaffirmed it could be a possibility for me, too.

I'm a little bit weird and awkward and unconventional in my own way. I, too, am an avid people-watcher and I keep my own careful notes and judgments. I have very specific interests and choose to focus on platonic friendships.
I put out specific vibes because of all of that. I may be intriguing to others but my behavior convinces them to keep their distance. I do things that seem natural to me-- that are instinctual-- that are surprising to others, for a variety of reasons. I'm a little bit closed off and also relate through pop culture references most people don't understand. And of course, all I know I've also only seen on it just seemed like the stars aligned once again tonight.

No comments: