Recap: Community S 3 E 07 Studies In Modern Movement
A day at the mall with Craig.
Everyone in the study group except Jeff helps Annie move from her old apartment to Troy and Abed's. Jeff lies to get out of it and runs into the Dean who blackmails him into having lunch and singing karaoke with him. Annie is upset to find that Abed and Troy don't have a second bedroom for her, but made a blanket fort instead. Britta picks up a hitchhiker to prove a point to Shirley. Pierce's attempts to repair a broken electrical outlet at Annie's apartment goes awry.
The Community episode "Studies In Modern Movement" provides examples of:
- Achilles' Heel: In Troy, Abed and Annie's stick puppet show, King Blorgon's only weakness is his butt.
- Actor Allusion:
- Awful Truth: Annie would rather believe Britta is lying to her than acknowledge she might get sick of Troy's and Abed's antics.
- Blackmail Is Such an Ugly Word: With actual blackmail no less.
Dean Pelton: Call me Craig. And call blackmail "a day at the mall with Craig."
- Borrowed Catch Phrase: Britta steals Shirley's "That's nice!" when "Jesus" corroborates her opinion on marijuana.
- Brake Angrily: The hitchhiker's racism is the last straw for both Britta and Shirley.
Hitchhiker: Now, with your permission, I'd like to sing a little song about race-mixing. This one's called "Don't You Do It".
[Britta slams on the brakes, which squeal]
Shirley & Britta: GET OUT!
- Buffy Speak: "You broke my pluggy-thing!"
- Catch Phrase: Annie uses Vaughn's "No worries"
- Chroma Key: Used in-universe when Jeff and the Dean sing karaoke.
- Cigarette of Anxiety: Troy in the Dreamatorium after Annie storms out. Subverted, as it's a candy cigarette.
- Comically Missing the Point: Twice.
- Shirley doesn't see how persecuting atheists can be religious persecution, because atheism's not a religion.
- Jeff apparently completely fails to notice the hot girl at his clothing store coming on to him.
- Although this one may just be another example of Jeff ignoring advances from attractive girls due to his ability to get any girl he wants at any time.
- Continuity Nod:
- Contrived Coincidence: Contrived by the Dean that is. He coincidentally bumped into Jeff at the Gap but actually he'd been reading Jeff's email and saw that there was a Gap sale on that Jeff was likely to go to.
- Coordinated Clothes: Dean Pelton is dressed exactly the same as Jeff when they have their day at the mall. Down to matching watches.
- Of Troy and Abed. The point of the episode is to show that while Troy and Abed's Man Child antics are funny and charming in small doses (such as the twenty-odd minutes they appear on television a week), if you had to live with them they could very easily start coming off as selfish and insufferable very quickly. The Reconstruction comes at the end when they acknowledge that they're not the easiest people to deal with and make amends with Annie for the difficulties they've put her through by giving up their room for her.
- Also of the Loony Friends Improve Your Personality trope; in her rant, (comparatively) strait-laced Annie angrily points out that she's always the one who has to adapt to Troy and Abed, and it's not fair that they seem to make no effort to meet her halfway and adapt to her.
- Disability as an Excuse for Jerkassery: Pierce tries this on Annie after she finds him in her old apartment, having been exposed to paint fumes all day.
Pierce: "I have brain damage! Nothing I do counts!"
- Disaster Dominoes: A limited version, but Pierce's attempts to fix Annie's apartment fit the pattern.
- Distant Duet: Pierce, in a hallucination in Annie's apartment, plays the piano for Jeff and the Dean's duet.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: The Dean coercing Jeff to spend an afternoon at the mall being his best bud. This comment when they're about to sing karaoke in particular:
- Duet Bonding
- Idiot Ball:
- Why didn't Annie check out Troy and Abed's apartment properly before moving in? At the very least she should have inspected the room she thought she would be living in.
- Abed, of all people, should have been Genre Savvy enough to know that Annie would not be happy living in a blanket fort. Didn't he watch any movies that dealt with a similar situation?
- There aren't, to be fair, a heck of a lot of movies or TV shows where a pair of room-mates have a disagreement over one of them being forced to sleep in a blanket-fort in lieu of another bedroom.
- And moreover, Abed is insanely Genre Savvy and he uses this to his advantage in real life. Loony Friends Improve Your Personality is not a trope that gets subverted very often.
- Both Abed and Troy seem to grab this actually. While they have always been Man Children, it seems much more exaggerated in this episode.
- In keeping with the note under Deconstruction, however, the point of the episode is that living with a pair of Adult Children, no matter how comparatively minor, can get infuriating fast if they're not willing to tone things down a bit.
- It has been stated in a previous episode that spending more than five minutes with Abed can get annoying pretty fast.
- Why would Troy and Abed put Annie in the blanket fort room rather than use it themselves to begin with? Actually, why would Abed ever even pick the room that doesn't have a TV? Or indeed a blanket fort?
- It may have been their misguided plan to be considerate to Annie, giving her what they believed to be the better bedroom. Of course, this reasoning in itself is an Idiot Ball.
- Why would Jeff spend the whole day with Dean Pelton, someone who greatly annoys him and is obviously a Stalker with a Crush, instead of just admitting the truth to the group? Sure they might get angry at him, but ditching out on helping a friend move is a relatively minor misdeed compared to some of his other acts.
- Because Jeff is the guy who always takes the easy way out of any given situation, even if it's ultimately the worst choice — and at that point, it looks like the easiest way out of that particular situation is to just suck it up and spend a bit of time hanging out with Dean Pelton (especially since he's already there) rather than go to the group, 'fess up and take the aggravation and drama, however ultimately minimal, the group will most likely send his way. When he agrees, he figures it'll just be a bit of shopping and maybe dinner — he doesn't expect karaoke.
- Interscene Diegetic
- Jesus Delusion: The hitchhiker thinks he's Jesus.
- Karma Houdini: Apart from a physical beating from Jeff, the Dean seems to avoid any legal punishment for making a HUGE violation of student privacy and then using it to blackmail/manipulate the student. And then tweets about it.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Jeff pretends to be sick to avoid helping Annie move when actually he's out shopping for clothes. Immediately after, he bumps into Dean Pelton, who uses this to blackmail him into spending the day with him. Eventually subverted/justified; the Dean had been reading his emails.
- Loony Friends Improve Your Personality: Deconstructed; during her angry rant about the Dreamatorium, Annie points out that she's always worried about being an uptight, fun-ruining buzzkill compared to the loony, wacky Troy and Abed and that she worries that she doesn't fit in with them, but it's not fair that she should always be the one to adapt and change as a response to their immaturity without them making any effort to accomodate her in return.
- Also inverted at the end, when Troy and Abed admit that one of the reasons they want Annie to move in is as a counterbalance to their looniness.
- Man Child: Troy and Abed, even more than usual.
- The Dean In The Moon
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Pierce tries to fix a broken electrical outlet so Annie does not lose her security deposit. He ends up doing serious damage to the apartment and possibly sustains brain damage.
- Not so Above It All: Whilst Britta is humoring Troy, Abed & Annie as they put on a a puppet show in The Tag, Jeff is reduced to tears over the death of Horse-Bot 3000.
- Not So Different: After vilifying each other's beliefs, Britta and Shirley come to an understanding after booting the hitchhiker for his song against race-mixing. After all, even atheists and fundamentalists have standards.
- Oh Crap: Shirley and Britta, when the hitchhiker mentions drinking human blood in his song.
- On Second Thought: Britta calls out Shirley on her judgmental tendencies right before they head off to Troy and Abed's place while Pierce is busy trying to fix Annie's broken plug outlet:
Shirley: Well somebody's got to be this group's moral compass.
Britta: And that somebody has to be you, right? Because by "moral compass," you mean "Shirley's religion." Want a ride?
Shirley: Well if this is a forecast of our conversation, I will ride with somebody else.
Pierce: Don't worry, Shirley. Keep me company while I fix this and I'll give you a ride over there.
(Shirley runs out of the room after Britta yelling her name.)
- Pan Up To The Sky Ending
- Playing Sick: Jeff
- Puppet Shows:
- Troy and Abed perform a shadow puppet play for Annie to make her feel better about her room being a blanket fort.
- There's another one in the Tag which makes Jeff cry.
- Read the Fine Print: Troy and Abed made some additions to the lease in crayon that Annie wasn't expecting.
- Recursive Reality: Troy, trying to explain his and Abed's tendency to get lost in their own imagination. "Sometimes we get stuck in our own little world. And then in that world, we make even littler worlds. And sometimes there are tunnels between those worlds. Or a subway. One time a snake..."
- Sarcastic Confession: Jeff makes a long and detailed one towards Britta while Playing Sick.
- Troy and Abed's Dreamatorium is a shout out to Star Trek: The Next Generation's Holodeck.
- Shirley: I've seen enough episodes of Friends to know that cohabitation among friends leads to sex, drugs, and something Parade magazine calls "Schwimmer Fatigue."
- When he "runs into" Jeff at the mall, Dean Pelton says, "This is just like that Lake House movie... I can only assume, even I have limits."
- Skyward Scream: "HE TWEETED IT!"
- Stalker with a Crush: Dean Pelton, towards Jeff.
- Take That
I've seen enough episodes of Friends
to know that cohabitation among friends leads to sex, drugs, and something Parade magazine calls "Schwimmer Fatigue."
- Taking A Third Option: Annie does not want to live in a blanket fort if there is an empty bedroom available but Troy and Abed don't want to give up their "dreamatorium". They solve this by giving Annie their bedroom and moving into the blanket fort themselves
- Too Dumb to Live: Pierce attempts to fix an electrical outlet without first turning the power off. He follows this up by trying to paint a poorly ventilated room with paint that emits toxic fumes.
- Waxing Lyrical: "Oh, hey Jeff, did you know that when it snows, my eyes become large and the light that you shine can be seen?"
- What the Hell, Hero?:
- Annie gives one to Troy and Abed for making her move-in so difficult and how inconsiderate they were being. And it was awesome.
- Britta also calls Shirley out on her frequent interpretation of being the group's 'moral compass' as 'getting everyone to abide by her religious beliefs'.
- She also points out how accusing Britta of being amoral because she's an atheist is religious persecution. Shirley wonders how it could be religious persecution when she doesn't have a religion.
- Wink Ding