In four years on NBC, Community has tackled paintball episodes, stop-motion animation, fake clip shows, multiple timeline episodes, and big movie homages, but it has never quite done something like this: tonight at the Paley Center for Media's PaleyFest panel celebrating the show, cast, and creative team, it was announced that for a very special episode in this fourth season, the Greendale gang would be getting puppet-ized.
In "Intro to Felt Surrogacy," the study group takes a wild balloon ride that crash lands in the woods. They end up spending a little time with a friendly mountain man (played by special guest star Jason Alexander). The woodland adventures give them reason to feel a bit awkward with one another, and Dean Pelton (Jim Rash) encourages them to speak about their experience through the use of puppets.
Though the gang starts off with puppets on their hands, acting out the scenario in a very similar "Show me on the puppet where the bad man touched" situation, soon the episode dissolves into a more magical fantasy as the gang becomes puppets and tell their tale through song.
LA TV Insider Examiner was in the audience at PaleyFest tonight to bring you the first look at the puppet doppelgangers, as they were unveiled on-stage. Series star Yvette Nicole Brown further teased the use of puppets as her "favorite thing" the show has done, including making Malcolm-Jamal Warner her TV husband. And if you know Brown, you know that's a big deal!
The felt and foam puppets are designed and built and operated by Scott Johnson, Drew Massey, and their teams of talented builders and puppeteers. They were also responsible for turning David Boreanaz into a puppet for an episode of Angel.
Community airs on NBC on Thursday nights at 8 p.m. "Intro to Felt Surrogacy" airs on April 11 2013.
Want more Community news and PaleyFest live-Tweets and photos? Follow LA TV Insider Examiner on Twitter!