With season 4 of Community just past its halfway point, and approaching the only week off in its 13-episode schedule, it’s time to look back on some of the most divisive episodes of the TV season.

Almost no art or culture can exist in a vacuum. To a certain extent everything owes a little to what came before it. On television, some shows do their best to keep their influencers hidden or to present as singular a vision as possible. Community was never one of these shows. Dan Harmon and the other writers of the show’s first three seasons decided to acknowledge that pop culture played such an integral role in their own and their characters lives that it would futile not to acknowledge it.

They started doing episodes that were direct homages to other art (“Contemporary American Poultry” and Goodfellas), then they moved on “doing” different genres (“Modern Warfare” and all testosterone-soaked action films). And throughout it all they had at least one character (almost always Abed) aloofly pointing out the sitcom conventions in their day-to-day lives.

Acknowledging that the show could not exist in a pop cultural vacuum is part of what made it so watchable and occasionally great in the first place, but it also might be what is curbing some fans’ enjoyment of it in this post-Harmon, soon-to-be post-Chevy Chase season.

Life outside of context: all the behind-the-scenes drama, the departures, the rehirings and reshuffling would do very well for season 4 of Community. But Community fans are too culturally-savvy and perhaps too invested in the inner-workings of the show to be able to watch it without context.

Community taught its fans to watch the show very closely for three seasons: for easter eggs, running jokes and pop cultural homages. And now those fans are watching season 4 so closely that can’t help but notice subtle differences. Maybe the Dean is just 2% more flamboyant or Jeff Winger’s speeches feel 3% less inspiring or the Troy and Abed relationship is 1% less authentic. But those small differences can feel enormous when you watch something so analytically while also loving it so dearly.

And it’s a shame because these seven episodes have not only had their excellent moments but have also been very invested in preserving all of the qualities that Dan Harmon instilled in the show: off-the-wall humor, cultural consciousness and true ambition. It’s noticeably not the Community of old, but it’s also not exactly a pale comparison.

It’s also worth noting that it took Community more than seven episodes initially to develop all of those qualities that we now hold dear. Late season 1 and seasons 2 and 3 are usually what comes to mind when we think of Community‘s brilliant moments. If anything season 4 seems most similar in tone to early season 1 of the show, with more stories revolving around the school itself and the machinations of the study group. It’s missing the manic touch that Harmon was able to bring to the show’s later episodes, but it’s not for lack of trying.

Sadly, we can never know what it would be like to watch season 4 out of context. As helpful as it would be to lock a TV critic and fan in a dungeon for a year then let them emerge to watch season 4, not knowing that anything changed behind the scenes, it would also be highly illegal. It would also be helpful if we could bend space and time to have season 4 immediately air after season 1 to a test audience and see if they noticed a dramatic difference. But obviously we can’t do that either (and if you could bend space and time, please be sensible and kill Hitler first, rearrange Community seasons later).

New showrunners Moses Port and David Guarascio deserve fair praise for turning in something close to Community. But until we can watch season 4 in another timeline, it’s always going to feel a little like a bodysnatcher.

After all that talk of inclusivity, Star Trek Beyond falls into the Hollywood trap of implied sexuality.

Mild spoilers for Star Trek Beyond.

Star Trek Beyond, already a wildly anticipated movie, made headlines ahead of its release because of the franchise’s decision to introduce the first openly LGBT character: Mr Sulu, played by John Cho.

While this decision was certainly met with excitement, there was disappointment, too. The original Mr Sulu, George Takei, openly voiced his opinion that they should have introduced a new LGBT character rather than expand on original canon (as they have been the whole trilogy), while Simon Pegg beautifully argued that there was power in using an established character who wouldn’t be defined by his sexuality.

Then came the movie itself, and while the introduction of gay Sulu is still a great thing, we’re left sorely disappointed by Beyond‘s decision to depict the LGBT relationship — or rather, hardly depict it at all.

As reported by our friends at The Mary Sue, the scene featuring Sulu and his husband Ben depicts a “lukewarm” relationship, although Sulu is very affectionate with the pair’s daughter.

This is, unfortunately, a common problem in Hollywood when an LGBT couple — almost impossibly — makes it into a big franchise film. They’re allowed to be there, but having any kind of physical interaction even remotely resembling what a heterosexual couple might have still seems to be off-limits.

Related: Hollywood is failing the LGBT community: GLAAD slams Disney, Paramount and Warner Bros.

And, according to John Cho, there was actually a kiss filmed. “There was a kiss that I think is not there anymore,” he told Collider. “It wasn’t like a make-out session. We’re at the airport with our daughter. It was a welcome-home kiss. I’m actually proud of that scene, because it was pretty tough.”

Cho points out that Ben was played by a non-actor, writer Doug Jung, and says, “Obviously, I just met the kid, and then Doug is not an actor. I just wanted that to look convincingly intimate. We’re two straight guys and had to get to a very loving, intimate place. It was hard to do on the fly. We had to open up. It came off well, in my view.”

And we wish we could have seen it. Introducing a major LGBT character in the Star Trek franchise is a fantastic first step, and depicting two POC actors raising a child together is a great statement — but, unfortunately, the decision to cut out their kiss (which was already chaste, by the sounds of it) is emblematic of Hollywood’s continuous phobia of depicting LGBT relationships and intimacy on the big screen.

As Screen Crush also points out, this exact same scenario played out in Independence Day: Resurgence, too. In Finding Dory, the lesbian couple are only implied, in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it sequence.

LGBT representation (when present at all) is always so subtle, evidently in fear of offending straight audiences while not totally erasing non-straight sexualities. And, sadly, even that is considered a big step forward — but maybe it’s time we start depicting humanity as it is, and not what society wished it was 100 years ago.

Here’s looking at you, Star Wars.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child reviews from theater critics are glowing, so when the hell can Americans get a chance to see the play in New York?

With just days to go until The Cursed Child script book is released around the world, The New York Post’s theater reporter has spoken to sources who say the play will be coming to Broadway sooner rather than later. Producers are currently holding discussions to bring the play to NY as early as 2017.

They haven’t yet announced a Broadway engagement for “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” but New York theater people say it’s only a matter of time. Word is that Friedman and Callender are in negotiations for a Shubert theater possibly for next season. They may hit Toronto first, however.

The idea of The Cursed Child hitting Broadway so soon (“next season” could mean around May 2017) will come as a relief to American Harry Potter fans who would rather not travel overseas to see “the eighth story” (though it’s a little more affordable to do so right now thanks to #Brexit). It also speaks to this important fact: It’s important to see The Cursed Child rather than reading it.

If the show does go to Toronto first as The New York Post suggests it might, a trip to Canada would also be easier for Americans. Sorry, people who don’t live in North America.

This writer saw the play in June and absolutely loved the characters and magic happening on stage. But the story is… not the best. I’m very eager to see what fans, myself included, think of the story after reading the script book this weekend.

For her part, Rowling has promised that fans around the world will get to see the play. Only time will tell if she’s hinting at a movie or a world tour:

If ‘Cursed Child’ comes to Broadway next year, will you try to see it ASAP?

The West End production currently has dates running into May 2017, but additional dates are expected to go on sale in early August.

Present day Han Solo may’ve left the main Star Wars series after the events of The Force Awakens, but the character’s time in movie theaters is far from over.

The new Han Solo film from Lucasfilm — scheduled to hit theaters in May 2018 — might turn into a trilogy for the reluctant hero, according to the New York Daily News.

The paper reports that star Alden Ehrenreich has signed a three-picture deal, suggesting that the studio intends to expand the Han Solo spinoff into a trilogy. “They feel that his character has the right potential to become a central figure in several movies,” a source told NY Daily News. “They’re keeping things under wraps at the moment, but the deal is that he has signed for at least three movies.”

This makes a lot of sense given the popularity of the character coupled with his absence in Episode 8 and beyond. We also know that Lucasfilm and Disney have many, many grand plans for Star Wars in the years ahead: The very first Star Wars theatrical spinoff, Rogue One, opens later this year. Episode 8 then hits theaters a year later (2017), followed by Han Solo’s own movie (2018). Next comes Episode 9 in 2019, followed by yet another spinoff reportedly focused on Boba Fett in 2020.

As for 2021 and beyond? Only time will tell, but we expect more movies set in the worlds of The Force Awakens, Rogue One, and now Han Solo.

The Han Solo spinoff will be directed by LEGO Movie helmers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. They’re currently deep into pre-production, as this tweet from Lord this morning shows:

“This is the first film we’ve worked on that seems like a good idea to begin with,” the directors said last July. “We promise to take risks, to give the audience a fresh experience, and we pledge ourselves to be faithful stewards of these characters who mean so much to us. This is a dream come true for us. And not the kind of dream where you’re late for work and all your clothes are made of pudding, but the kind of dream where you get to make a film with some of the greatest characters ever, in a film franchise you’ve loved since before you can remember having dreams at all.”