Recap: Community S2 E08: Cooperative Calligraphy
Yeah, well, you can tell your disappointment to suck it. I'm doing a bottle episode!
The study group has finished an assignment for Anthropology class and everyone is getting ready to go on their separate ways. Jeff has a date, Britta has a photography project, and the rest are going to a puppy parade on the quad. Then, Annie notices that her pen is missing. Hilarity Ensues
as each member of the group is successively accused of having taken the pen.
The Community episode "Cooperative Calligraphy" provides examples of:
- All There in the Manual: The DVD case for the first half of Season 2 is styled after Abed's notebook. You can read Abed's notes on the menstrual cycles so that you can see exactly what he wrote without having to freeze-frame the episode.
- Anvilicious: In-Universe, the Equality and Togetherness float at the puppy parade. The Dean, of all people, lampshades it.
- Big "NO!": Annie
- Born in an Elevator: Abed is of the mind that if you are pregnant you should invoke this trope or not be pregnant at all.
- Bottle Episode: Invoked by both Abed and Jeff.
- Brick Joke/Chekhov's Gunman: Annie's Boobs the monkey, introduced in Season 1.
- Call Back:
- Collective Groan: The group's response to Britta's complaining about "invasion of civil liberties".
- Eat the Evidence: One of the suggestions.
Troy: Maybe nobody took it. Sometimes I think I lost something really important to me, and it turns out I already ate it.
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: The pen turns out to have been stolen by Annie's Boobs, Troy's monkey.
- Fan Nickname: While this is certainly not Community's only Bottle Episode, it's invariably the one any member of the cast, crew, or fanbase is referring to if they say "the bottle episode".
- Fanservice: Everybody strips down to their underwear in order to find the pen. There's something for everyone!
- When removing Pierce's casts to find the pen, Abed expresses uncertainty that they should be doing that, noting that "this is how supervillains get created." Throughout the second half of the series, Pierce's increasingly erratic, Jerkass and cruel behaviour has been an ongoing subplot, culminating in his revenge scheme in "Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking".
- You also notice at the beginning of the episode that when Annie starts to get upset, Abed has a chocolate for her — hinting at the reveal later in the episode about his tracking the girls' menstrual cycles.
- If you pay very close attention to the beginning of the episode, you can actually see the pen being stolen.
- Britta comments that Jeff "usually" wears Beetlejuice boxers — only Abed notices, setting up his realization in "Paradigms of Human Memory" that they have been sleeping together.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus:
- The theft of Annie's pen during the drive-by deaning.
- On the whiteboard, you can see the phrase "If we evolved from monkeys, how come we still have monkeys?" with the second monkey crossed out and replaced with "Pierce?"
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
I still think man is going to evolve into woman, not a dragon monster with three legs. Pierce: Three legs?
- Held Gaze: Jeff and Annie have a very UST-y moment of holding each other's gaze as their anger ignites after Annie tries to calm down Jeff with the line: "It's just a pen!" The Held Gaze continues even as Britta butts in and Jeff keeps staring at Annie's chest. Once again, the Held Gaze is used to establish that Jeff and Annie's UST is off the charts!
- Hypocritical Humor:
- When Britta accuses Annie:
Annie: I am not hiding my own pen, you paranoid weirdo! Everybody stay within each other's eyelines please, one of you is a monster.
- When the group discover Shirley's pregnancy test:
Annie: Guys, this is a terribly childish way to handle this kind of situation. (runs over to Shirley and hops up and down in excitement) Does this mean you have a new boyfriend? Who, who, who?
- The Dean, who is usually the orchestrator of Political Correctness Gone Mad, booing the "Equality And Togetherness" float.
- I Can Explain: Abed, when the group discovers his charts on the female group members' menstrual cycles. Double-subverted in that while he didn't expect them to actually give him a chance to explain, he's prepared with an explanation when they do.
- I Take Offense to That Last One: Dean Craig Pelton gets called a "non-miraculous son of a bitch."
- MacGuffin: The pen.
- Meaningful Background Event: You can see Annie's Boobs take the pen in the back of one of Troy and Abed's shots early on.
- The Monkey Was The Mastermind
- No Periods, Period: Averted.
- Oh, Crap: Troy's face when he finds out that Shirley was ovulating on Halloween, when she had sex with Chang. Doubles as a Call Back.
- Political Correctness Gone Mad/Tastes Like Diabetes: One of the floats in the puppy parade features a puppy and a kitten with the caption, "Equality and Togetherness". Even the Dean finds it sanctimonious.
- Precious Puppies:
I have a date to catch, or, should I say, a catch to date. Britta: Oof, I hope you just came up with that
. (later) Dean Pelton:
I expect to see you all at the puppy parade. Except you, Jeffrey — I know you've got a catch to date. Jeff: [off Britta's look]
Oh, like you're famous for your wit.
- Ransacked Room: The study room is thoroughly trashed by the end, albeit at the hands of the group.
- Sassy Black Woman: Shirley.
Shirley: Mother Hen? I think we're about the same age.
Britta: Sure, unless time is linear.
Shirley: I'll make your ass linear.
Britta: That doesn't make any sense.
Shirley: I'll make your ass sense.
- Serious Business
Annie: It's not a pen; it's a principle!
- Ship Tease: Jeff and Annie, using another one of their customary HeldGazes.
- Shirtless Scene
- Squick: Britta dumps her bag at the group's insistence.
Britta: There! Happy?
Jeff: Not if that's a used Q-tip.
- Take That: Jeff's would-be date is named Gwynnifer after a Twitter troll.
- Title-Only Opening: This is used for the only time in Season 2.
- Victoria's Secret Compartment: Annie is accused of hiding the pen here.
- Stealth Pun: In the end, Annie's Boobs did have the pen
- What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: Britta provides an in-universe example.
Annie: Last week, she invoked the Freedom of Information Act to request photocopies of my notes.
- A Wizard Did It: The group concludes that a ghost did it.
- Women's Mysteries: The response of the women to their finding Abed's charts of their menstrual cycles.
- Word of God: According to Dan Harmon on the DVD commentary, Gwynnifer doesn't exist and Jeff wasn't really making a phone call. Gwynnifer was his code for hooking up with Britta.