The Internet is Coming for The IT Crowd
If you missed the announcement yesterday, The IT Crowd has come back, for one last episode. When a marvelous show is canceled, and is brought back to life years later usually one of two things happens. Either the comeback is better than the original, setting off in a new direction, breathing new life into a dead program. Alternatively, the resuscitated program looks like a sad attempt to recapture success, like a short person chasing the bus as it pulls away from the stop. The Internet is Coming does both of these things, in the best possible way.
I could not believe for one moment that this show took itself seriously. I have a hard time believing it takes itself as anything as the show itself is an abstract concept that has no sense of self. The nature of the consciousness of a television program aside, the ludicrous nature of the show is amplified in this single episode season. There was no pretending this was not a onetime reunion show. There was no teasing a second or third episode, and no chance anything you see would have a lasting effect, other than to be simply hilarious. While the episode managed to be a brilliant collage of all the things, jokes, lines, that made the entire series one of my favorites, it also managed to do all these things in new ways. Mostly new, anyway.
New is somewhat a relative term here. All the characters were the same. In fact, it looked a lot like friends of mine that work in IT departments for their entire lives. Myself included, in some respects. In a way, this was like looking in a mirror. I watched myself reflected in each of the characters. I am so much like Moss I find it unnerving to watch. I see my emotional vulnerability in Roy, and I see myself in Jen’s blouse. In truth, the characters were not quite the same. They were older, and as we age we tend to do things, like look older. They all seemed to grow into their life-long positions. Roy wasn’t as angry all the time. Jen was more comfortable as a leader, and Moss had different pants. All three main characters were re-written not to just take one last stab at a punch line, but to pay a quite honest tribute to them.
The entire season, all 48 glorious minutes, is a lovely tribute actually. One that really made me wish there were more seasons, but doesn’t make me wish it would come back completely. It’s time has passed.
The Internet is Coming was like a visit from a very dear old friend, who then returns to Seattle after a day or two. Graham Linehan created a beautiful thing in The IT Crowd, and he bought it back in the best possible way, once, and for one episode. 10 out of 10, I will love re-watching this episode, just as much, if not more than I love re-watching the entire series.