Follow TV Tropes


Headscratchers / Community

Go To

New entries on the bottom.

    open/close all folders 

    Season 4 History 101 

  • Why is it that an episode after the Christmas episode in season 4 they are still working on a History 101 project? Previous seasons have established that after Christmas break the second semester starts. I get that they didn't want the Christmas episode to be the finale, but still it seems odd that this happened. Did the new writers not realize perhaps?
    • The entire season has also had it's order shuffled around a few times; it's possibly a consequence of that.
    • On that note, "Basic Human Anatomy" marks the one-year anniversary of Troy and Britta's first date, which took place in "Virtual Systems Analysis". Since the first date took place (at the very least) a number of weeks after Christmas, there's no way "Basic Human Anatomy" could take place pre-Christmas, no matter how the episodes are shaken up.
    • Cornwallis didn't start teaching until after Halloween. With the first semester starting in August/September, that means the class started 2 months late, and subsequently finished after Christmas, roughly at the start of March.


    Digital Estate Planning 

  • The post-credits scene in "Digital Estate Planning" (i.e. the 8-Bit Episode) shows Troy and Abed walking into the study room and finding a baby sitting there. This is right in the middle of the arc where \Chang expels the Study Group and rules the school with an iron fist, and in the very next episode it's established that the school is tightly guarded and the Greendale Seven aren't allowed to set foot near it. The baby is an allusion to a throwaway line in the episode, where Abed says Hilda gave him children, something Troy then remorsefully said he couldn't do, which is why I know it had to be in this episode if it was going to be anywhere, but given the current arc it makes no sense the characters would be there.
    • There's no real reason to suppose that the tags necessarily occur around about the same time as the episodes proper unless there's a direct link established between them, which there usually isn't; in this case the tag simply happened at some point before they were kicked out or after they were welcomed back into the school (and Troy was freed from the clinginess of the AC Annex). Yes, it's a bit out of order, but sometimes you just gotta shrug and move on.
    • In one of the DVD commentaries, it was mentioned by one of the producers that they write and film the tags separately and then just pair them up with episodes rather randomly.
    • You could also easily assume the episode comes after Advanced Gay but before the late season 3 arc where they were expelled from Greendale, and pretend the episode was aired out of order.
    • Whilst it has no real in-universe explanation other than it happened at the time they weren't expelled, the real life explanation was that they had written a tag specifically for the episode where Abed had taken the code of the game and altered it for Pierce. He made an alternate game where Pierce's avatar and Cornelius's floating head were playing catch together, and the head said "Good job son" whenever he succeeded. The tag was to end on Pierce looking happy with a tear rolling down his cheek. They never filmed it because Chevy Chase refused to film it so he could go home, and it was the last thing to be filmed of the season. It's unknown whether or not Chevy Chase refused to film it because he was just being difficult, or he actually didn't realise how important that tag would have been.
    • On the subject of that episode, the group threatens to stop Gilbert physically, but are deterred by the threat of forfeiting the game due to the weight sensor. But what's to stop one member of the group from forfeiting to stop him and the rest finishing the game?
    • Nothing, I suppose, but (and this is a bit WMG, but what the hey) given that physically removing one of the players from the gaming console isn't really in the spirit of playing the game for the inheritance, and since this is supposed to be an ironic punishment to Pierce from Cornelius, I wouldn't put it past him to have included some kind of loophole that means that the player who was physically removed by the other players automatically wins the prize by default or that all the players lose out and the inheritance goes to a non-involved party (like, say, a charity or something); otherwise, there's no point in having the game at all, you might as well just make everyone present physically fight each other for the inheritance. Cornelius, for all that he's a hateful bastard, appears to have had some sense of honor (he recorded a death scene in case he lost, after all) and so probably made sure that everyone would have to play by the rules. In that sense, it's not just a forfeit for the player of the game, it's a forfeit for everyone. Besides which, at that point Gilbert himself is playing the game by the rules and hasn't implemented any of his cheats (although he does have a clear advantage); the study group reasons that since he's playing fairly they might as well, and that if they work together they can take him.
    • True, though at the end, they give Gilbert the win by getting up and forfeitting, so it does seem like the forfeit only applies to the individual player. And given that they were going to physically remove him before he threatened them with the sensors, I don't see why they wouldn't go through with it after it was revealed he was cheating. Though I guess there could also be the loophole in the will, but none of the study group would've known about that.
    • Also true. Something else to consider, however, is that while Gilbert is clearly rather buttoned up, he also probably isn't just going to let the study group drag him away. Certainly not without a fight, and if it comes to that he's bigger than Troy, Abed and the ladies, he's younger than Pierce, and it's been clearly established that Jeff isn't exactly the fighter of the group (nor the most willing to get physical and risk messing himself up). Chances are, if it came down to a fight it would take most if not all of them to subdue him, which consequently defeats the purpose since they'd all end up forfeiting anyway.

    Britta the designated failure 

  • Why does the group always rag on Britta? Yes, she does screw things up a lot and is a hypocrite, but she honestly tries to help them (even if it's the least helpful way possible, she still tries to make an effort [re. what she said to Jeff while treating his wounds in Modern Warfare]). And she's their friend, you don't repeatedly refer to your friend as "the worst" or scorn. at everything she does —or at least she happens to be the *only* one in the group that gets such treatment. This also affects me on a shipping stance as I liked Tritta up until the first episodes of season 3 where he seemed unnecessarily cruel to her, even more forward with it than any of the other group members. And with all the recent 'you're the worsts' (from a complete stranger even) and 'this is why you're the stupidest' from the group, that's not friendship, that could actually be bullying.
    • To be fair, she does bring a lot of it on herself; see the 'screw things up and is a hypocrite' thing. Helpful and well-meaning she may be, but she is still something of an obnoxious, self-righteous know-it-all who tends to loudly put forth her opinions regardless of how well-informed they are, and it's not hard to spend any significant amount of time with such a person without developing a desire to burst their bubble whenever you get the opportunity. Plus, while the study group do tend to rag on her quite a bit at times (although I think that every social group tends to develop the member who ends up being the butt of the joke more often than not), she hardly gets it the worst — certainly no worse than Pierce, IMHO — and it's frequently made pretty clear that for all the ragging they also love her to bits underneath it all and won't tolerate anyone else treating her poorly. Note in "Regional Holiday Music" how when Mr. Rad starts laying into her everyone immediately leaps to her defence. As for Troy, I can't think of any early season three episodes where he's exceptionally mean to her except for "Biology 101" and that's because she, well-meaning or not, is directly responsible for his best friend being in a deep catatonic state — it would be very hard to for anyone to remain civil with the person responsible under those circumstances. Just because someone's well-meaning when they screw things up doesn't mean they haven't still screwed things up, and it's hard to remain patient with them if they keep doing it like Britta does.
    • One could also argue that in Troy's case at least, the fact that he does tend to rag on her a lot makes his heartfelt sincerity later in the season when he tells her that she's 'the best' all the more meaningful.
    • OP here. I do agree that she's often at fault and Pierce gets treated a lot worse, there's this whole unfriendly atmosphere with the way they interact with her. However, Pierce tends to fight fire with fire and after she's out of admittedly ineffective comebacks, she just tends to resign to this broken look on her face (ie. after Abed reverse psychoanalyzes her and this gif. She's not a strong person, though she pretends to be, and the study group knows that, but I don't think they're fully aware of how much they appear to hurt her, as much as they love her. It goes both ways. As for Tritta, I'll admit that part in Course Listing Unavailable was sweet, but felt a bit out of character, since he mocks her quite often, like the others: "You're the AT&T of people." "Everyone just wants you to shut up." etc. You guys made me rethink my point, so it's not that the study group are awful friends, Britta's family to them, I just don't think they're fully conscious of how unnecessarily mean to her sometimes. And just a hot spot for me: The group will react to a teacher whom they're temporarily "under the spell on" when he calls her the worst, but nothing for a priest that doesn't even know her? It just feels ... off-colour, even for Community.
    • To be fair, the priest incident was a the priest basically mumbling sotto voce to Britta; it wasn't like he was screaming it in her face in front of everyone or anything, he was pretty much just muttering it to her / himself. Given that everyone's a bit distracted by Pierce telling his dead dad to suck it, no one other than Britta might even have heard. The context is also slightly different in that while Mr. Rad is ultimately screaming at and humiliating her in front of an audience for ruining what is ultimately a crappy little holiday show, the priest is making a frustrated little comment under his breath while he's conducting the funeral of the father of one of their friends — even if we take into account Pierce's own lack of regard to his father, even the study group would probably feel a bit uncomfortable and awkward getting in a priest's face at a funeral in front of everyone, whether they were sticking up for Britta or not. Sometimes you have to pick and choose your battles.
    • It depends on whether you read the tone of comments made to Britta to be good-natured ribbing or actually hurtful. For me, the humour in the 'you're the worst' comments comes from the irony: she's the only one to get torn down this emphatically though her actions are only ever misguidedly well-intentioned. It also depends on Britta being a resilient character who is unlikely to actually listen to the critisism. It would seem more serious in the comments were aimed at the more vulnerable Annie. Finally, having Britta the butt of the joke and finding humour in her actual incompetence (in contrast with her self-righteousness) seems to be the writers' way of developing her away from the more boring sorted straight man she was in the opening few episodes and giving her more comedic potential.
    • Wordof God states that this is done purposefully because the more Britta breaks down after being lambasted by the group, the more the audience feels for her and loves her since the viewers can see her good intentions. So the group criticizes her so we can love her that much more.
    • It seems like it started as a gag, and one that is at the base of many a running gag on the show: the idea that someone or something innocuous or even admirable attracts inexplicable derision from the group, or Greendale students generally (as Professor Kane says, "You guys have weird reactions to stuff."). At first, calling Britta 'the worst' for no real reason is the same basic gag as the vitriol directed at the unseen Gary, or the contempt with which harmless older student Leonard is treated. It's just funny that the smart, cool, conventionally beautiful, comparatively balanced Britta, is regarded with random contempt. As for why the gag became characterisation and rather took over the character, it's probably because unlike most of the main cast she didn't have much of a comedy-situation-generation 'engine' about her character. Stories on Community start when Pierce acts from bitterness, Jeff from selfishness, Annie from control-freak-ish-ness etc. But Britta, created more as a foil/motivator to Jeff than her own plot-driving character, was left a bit adrift as the story moved into the story format of madcap adventures sparked off by one/some of the group acting out in some way. The gag filled that void: if Britta doesn't cause conflict or upset by acting selfishly (like the aforementioned characters) because she's fundamentally not a very selfish person, or by acting whimsically (like Troy and Abed) because she's too grounded, she can cause it by acting incompetently.

    Chang's Spanish 

  • Chang's Spanish knowledge. He often seems to be very interested in Spanish culture as a whole (meeting his wife through Salsa dancing, his nickname El Tigre, defending his job to his Rabbi brother, and the infamous I AM A SPANISH GENIUS outburst), yet he states in the season one finale that he only took the Spanish teaching job because it was the best option, and doesn't know Spanish at all (beyond phrases learned from Sesame Street).
    • Being very interested in something doesn't necessarily equal being very knowledgable in it or all aspects of it; I'm very interested in the music of Bach but wouldn't know how to play "Violin Concerto in A Minor" to save my life. Similarly, you don't need to know how to speak Spanish to learn how to salsa dance, or to find Latina women attractive. It's perhaps notable that most of Chang's expressions of interest in Spanish culture, such as his various costumes, tend to be rather stereotypically 'Spanish' or 'Mexican' (bull-fighters, sombreros, salsa-dancing, etc) — the kind of things you don't necessarily need an in-depth immersion into the culture to really pick up on. Similarly, 'El Tigre' is a fairly simple Spanish phrase, not one you really need to know the language well to pick up or use. As for his argument with his brother / "SPANISH GENIUS" rant, who's going to be more defensive about their abilities and profession than someone who has absolutely no idea what they're doing and is determined to make sure no one else finds that out?
    • Also, he had to pick up on at least a bit of the language after teaching a Spanish class for a while.

    Britta and LGBT 

  • Britta's views on homosexuality/homophobia really confuse me. In the episode with Paige, she's shown to be very accepting and forward, her bathroom conversation with Shirley shows she's very anti-gender roles, and she is always otherwise shown as the type of person who would be very pro-gay rights and anti-gender binary. So what the hell is with her whole "Fighting lets men let out their pent-up gayness" crap in "Comparative Religion"?
    • I think there's a few things to point out here: firstly, she might be framing it in gender-studies discourse but on some level Britta clearly enjoys the thought of watching guys fighting (or 'fighting') in the same way that straight guys might enjoy watching two girls make out; she's the only one banging on about it, after all. Now, this might be a rather limited and narrow way of looking at sexuality issues, but it's not necessarily homophobia.
      Secondly, if indeed it is, then to be fair it's not completely out-of-character — Britta has frequently been shown throughout the series to be a bit of a Hypocrite when it comes to her politics and just a little bit of a Straw Feminist when it comes to gender issues; notice how both of the mentioned examples are 'pro-gay rights and anti-gender binaries' in so far as they pertain to women, not men. Open-mindedness towards one group does not necessarily equal open-mindedness to all groups; she clearly subscribes to certain Double Standards pertaining to men and women's various gender and sexuality issues (which, without wanting to provoke an argument, are not entirely absent from certain schools of feminist thought, but that's another debate). Less-than-admirable it may be, but this would hardly be the first time she's been found wanting in consistency or commitment regarding her political views, let's be honest.
      And finally, far from being examples of how accepting, open-minded and forward-thinking, I'd actually argue that those examples actually demonstrate her to be quite limited in her thinking, to at least some degree. Remember, she's friends with Paige not so much because she genuinely likes Paige — the end of the episode shows that the two clearly don't actually like each other that much — but because she gets off on the 'credibility' of having a lesbian friend. She's basically using Paige as a prop to show how progressive and politically correct she is (most of the episode involves her lording over Annie in this sense), and although Paige is hardly the nicest person and is doing the exact same thing to Britta, she entirely rightly calls Britta on this when Britta tries to weasel out of it. Similarly, far from showing her to be beyond gender binaries, the Wondrous Ladies Room incident actually suggests (to me, anyway) that Britta's merely gotten herself limited to different binaries instead of the traditional ones; she's initially quite condescending and dismissive of the whole thing and ends up deeply offending Shirley when she insensitively and rudely suggests that she and her mother are 'robots' for wanting to receive a makeover, neither of which is tremendously open-minded of her, nor the attitude of someone 'beyond' gender binaries.
    • This isn't the only time Britta uses gay-baiting to antagonize Jeff. In "Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking" when she loses control during role-playing her first reaction is to undermine Jeff's Dad sexuality and eventually calls him Jeff Winger's Dumb Gay Dad. As above post points out Britta is shown to be at times a Hypocrite, more interested in the appearance of open-mindedness and the progressive agenda than actual action and participating. In "Early 21st Century Romanticism" she had, or at least though she did, a lesbian friends. Not because Britta connected on a human level or even that she is sexually orientation neutral and just happen to find out, Britta's only purpose with this friendship is for the selfish reason to show off to Annie and everyone else how much better she is than them.
    • Honestly, that isn't that inconsistent. It's not terribly uncommon for gay people themselves to do that sort of baiting. For Britta, who is often shown to be trying too hard in general, feeling comfortable doing that seems plenty in character.
    • What's confusing? She's a hypocrite. She means well, but good intentions don't mean everything you do is automatically good. Britta seems like the kind of person who thinks that her views on some matters, in this case equal rights for homosexuals, means that she gets a free pass to say the kind of stuff that a homophobic person can't. Like a guy I used to know who insisted he could say the n-word, because everybody knows he isn't really racist. Basically, since Britta makes a scene about treating gay people nicely, it doesn't matter if she uses gayness to insult someone because she's on "their side" and nothing bad she does counts.
    • Or possibly she just never really thought that hard about it and pays a lot of lip-service, speaking up against really obvious homophobia like Pierce's and ignoring anything more subtle, like how being gay is an insult to a straight person. It's pretty common in feminism and other types of activism: women have the vote, equal pay, reproductive rights, etc etc etc, therefore feminism is over despite the countless subtle micro-aggressions women still have to deal with. Or the bigger actual-aggressions that people prefer to ignore because it's harder to change a culture of ingrained sexism than it is to write laws about equal pay.

    Jeff attending Greendale 

  • How is attending Greendale community college going to solve any of Jeff's problems? Wouldn't the fact that he faked his bachelor's degree nullify his J.D.? And how is getting an associate's degree going to fix that? Also, wouldn't the fact that he committed fraud mean that no respectable law firm would ever hire him again? And wouldn't that be a criminal offense?
    • Community seems to take place in a universe where every lawyer — even a member of the Bar's boards —is an Amoral Attorney. In the pilot, Jeff refers to a "deal" with the state bar regarding his fraudulent Bachelor's that will allow him to regain his license if he can get a legitimate four-year degree. Later, when we finally get to meet his old colleagues, it's made perfectly clear that they'll happily take him back and that they're even proud that he bluffed the Bar for so long. His former boss even offers him consulting work in the meantime.
    • Presumably he reasons that having something is better than nothing, and Jeff — considering he previously managed to talk himself into a job at a law-firm without having a legitimate degree whatsoever, and being the consummate bluff-artist we know him to be — believes that he'd still be able to talk his way into something good with that.
    • It's stated that his Bachelor's, not his JD is fake early in the pilot; apparently he has a legitimate JD and presumably passed the state bar exam, but entered law school using false credentials.
    • Presumably the lack of a Bachelor's degree would still also affect the overall legitimacy of his degree and qualification to practice in the eyes of prospective employers and the law, though. So even if he did get his JD the lack of a valid Bachelor's degree would presumably invalidate it as well, at least until he managed to get a legitimate Bachelors degree. Hence, the JD — while acquired, unlike the Bachelors degree — would still not be entirely legitimate, otherwise they'd just let anyone wander into a law school without qualifications and start letting them practice law once they'd finished.
    • It's up to the school who to admit or not, and there are people without bachelor's degrees who get law degrees a fair amount in the Commonwealth (not sure about in the U.S.). If he completed the program, whether or not he should have been accepted at the time, the school can give their seal of approval to anyone they want (consider "honorary degrees", too).
    • I'm also not 100% on the US state of affairs, but if that's the case, well, it's likely that the school Jeff attended simply didn't want to give him their seal of approval. He wouldn't have needed to fake his bachelors degree in the first place if it was a school that he could legitimately attend without one (Jeff "Always Takes The Easy Route" Winger would definitely have taken that option if it was available to him, since convincingly faking an entire bachelor's degree isn't exactly easy, so we can safely assume it wasn't), and if everyone was okay with him earning the JD despite faking his bachelors, well, he wouldn't need to be in Greendale in the first place. Theoretically the school in question might be willing to award anyone they wish, but in practice to put it bluntly they'd have to be fucking idiots to reward Jeff for conning and taking advantage of them; that's just going to damage the integrity and reputation of the school and open the "hey, come and take advantage of us!" doors for any old con artist. So it's likely his JD has been revoked or withdrawn, at least until he actually qualifies for it fully. As for honorary degrees, in practice they're usually a nice bit of paper and some letters at the end of someone's name; generally an honorary degree won't get you taken very seriously if you try to actually practice in that field, since you haven't put in the study and hard work to get it (and they're also not going to give Jeff one for conning them either).
    • You can go to law school without an undergraduate degree. In fact, in several US states you can write the bar exam without going to law school. Colorado is not one of them; but Jeff could have driven north to Wyoming, apprenticed to a lawyer briefly, written THAT state's bar exam, and then come back to Colorado, where a license to practice would be issued as a courtesy to out-of-state counsel. So unless the Colorado Bar Association specifically directed him to get an undergraduate degree as a show of good faith toward lifting his suspension, getting a BA from Greendale was NOT the easiest way to solve Jeff's problem. But then there wouldn't be a show.
    • Or there would be a show, but it would be Suits.
    • FWIW "Origins of Vampire Mythology" suggests that Jeff's JD is just as illegitimate as his bachelor's degree ("... and then I cheated on the LSAT...") thus further strengthening the assumption that it's also been revoked, until he re-qualifies at least.
    • Cheating on the LSAT wouldn't necessarily make a JD illegitimate, nor does it mean he cheated his way through law school. It's possible to assume his deal with the state bar included that he only had to get a legitimate Bachelor's, and not a legit JD. Perhaps his law school understands he applied and entered law school under false pretenses, however, they've determined he did his law school work legitimately (or rather he did the minimum work to not get caught) and will grant him his JD as long as he gets his bachelors, with faking the LSAT either not being known, or cared about.
    • Maybe, but given this is Jeff "Always Takes The Easy Way Out" Winger we're discussing, it's not a hard leap to make that he did cheat his way through law school and the LSAT as well, even if he didn't necessarily get caught for them; given how willing he is lie, cheat and do what's easy no matter how immortal it is early in the series, it's in fact much harder to believe (for this Troper anyway) that he suddenly became honest and above board when it came to his JD. I'm also not quite certain how cheating on the LSAT wouldn't make the subsequent degree illegitimate even if it wasn't discovered, since that's kind of what cheating is — using a shortcut to acquire something illegitimately. Under such circumstances, it would seem fair to say that Jeff didn't have entirely legitimate qualifications even if he didn't get caught. And as mentioned above, if it was known that Jeff faked the LSAT it would definitely be cared about, since as discussed above any halfway reputable school would be fools to knowingly let someone get away with cheating a degree out of them without any kind of punishment.
    • Interestingly Jeff, as a practicing attorney who has passed the bar, does not actually need a law degree anymore. He can simply keep taking and passing the bar. His law school cannot stop him from practicing law by taking away his degree, he'd have to be disbarred for that. (Although his JD school could be threatening to tell the bar certain facts.)
    • I also just assumed that this was evidence of Jeff's silver tongue and Manipulative Bastard nature at work; it was the plea bargain he managed to make with the Bar Association to prevent complete ruin and jail time. In other words, Jeff's such a great Amoral Attorney that he can even pull the rug out from other attorneys.
    • I always assumed that Jeff managed to never technically lie when applying for law school. He does have a 'Bachelor's from Columbia'.
    • Actually, it's a Bachelor's from Colombia.
    • On a related note, since when do community colleges offer four-year bachelor's degrees?
    • Some have begun to within the last decade. Jeff could just be gathering up cheap and easy elective credits though.
    • And this could also be chalked up to Dean Pelton trying to make Greendale "a real college." Probably the same reason GCC has dorms (before this show, I'd never heard of a community college that had dorms).
    • This troper's local community college has dorms at a few campuses. In Colorado no less. And offers bachelor degrees, but only since 2011 or so, I believe.
    • the four year bachelor degree thing was lampshaded in curriculum unavailable
    • It's suggested in a couple of episodes that Jeff's old job at his old firm was being kept for him since his boss liked and respected him despite/because of the 'falsifying his credentials' incident; attending Greendale was just so that he had something on paper to justify it.
    • This is all but confirmed in the Season 3 finale, when Jeff is told that, even if he gets his degree from Greendale, his old law firm would still be the only one willing to hire him.


    Slater and Jeff 

  • Someone explain to me why Prof Slater broke up with Jeff? From what I could tell, he was working through his commitment issues, had shown her that Britta was a friend for now, and she turns around and dumps him the moment he actually appeared to be working towards being a good boyfriend? WTF!
    • She's a GDB.
    • She was never really shown to be that nice of a person anyways. It didn't seem that out of character for her to not really be into the relationship for the long haul.
    • Wasn't she bitching about Jeff not being in it for the long haul like 3 episodes earlier?
    • No- she was bitching about Jeff not calling it boyfriend and girlfriend. There actually is a big difference- pray you don't find out what it is someday.
      • She wasn't angry that Jeff wasn't committing to long-term prospects in that episode, she was just requiring Jeff to be fully invested in what they had going at that moment on time. That's how dating goes - hopefully as two people date and get to know each other better and better you like each other more and more. But more often than not after a while one or both people decide that this person they've got to know isn't the one for them, and they end it. Dating is what you do to work out how deep the attraction goes. But whatever happens, while you're in that relationship, you require the other person to be fully into it and not acting like you're trying to smother them just for admitting you're involved!
    • Maybe she just got bored of him, I dunno, people break up. It didn't seem that out of character.
    • This is more or less what happened. She was also apparently quite selfish in the relationship as Jeff tearfully laments "We used to always watch the shows she wanted to watch!"
    • Obviously she left to work for the CIA
    • She mainly just existed to change up the show a little after the unrequited version of alpha couple Jeff-Britta and Beta-couple Troy-Annie got boring and predictable. After being a way for Britta to realize she has feelings for Jeff, and a distraction for when Annie loses interest in Troy, she no longer had any purpose other than being the girlfriend.
    • If you watch the DVD commentary, Dan Harmon makes it clear that they didn't mean to abruptly end the Slater-Jeff relationship, but they had already stunt-cast Katharine McPhee as a love interest for Jeff.

    Chang's marriage 

  • Isn't chang supposed to be married? a first season episode had Jeff help him get back together with his wife. Yet in the zombie episode stuff happened between him and Shirley
    • I imagine it just didn't work out with his wife.
    • Chang is a sonofabitch. Since when has he ever followed any morals besides his own personal twisted code?
    • This. He admitted that he propositioned Dr. Slater, but she "doesn't date married Asians that drive mopeds."
    • Chang is still married but his wife kicked him out after she found out about him and Shirley
    • In fairness, it was in the middle of a zombie attack. Normal rules don't apply.
    • Since he got kicked out, obviously his wife disagrees.
    • Is this really a Headscratcher? Chang is a selfish and inconsiderate Jerkass; infidelity is hardly beyond him.

    Jeff's embarrassing tape 

  • How on earth did Annie get that tape of Jeff?
    • My theory on this is that she contacted Jeff's mom in an attempt to find his dad.
    • What tape?
    • This tape.

    Locked away Tiger Gun 

  • Since Chang brought in his own equipment in last year's paintball game, why is his Tiger Gun locked away? Surely it would have been returned to him afterwards?
    • Where was the last time we saw the Tiger Gun? Jeff brought it to the Dean's office to re-enact the ending of Die Hard. The Dean just locked it up after Jeff left.
    • Annie got it from the ammo stash in Fistful of Paintballs and used it to confront Pierce. It continued to be used in For A Few Paintballs More.

    Paternity test 

  • How come Shirley never got a paternity test? Wouldn't that have solved all of her problems in season two?
    • Rule of Drama. She was pretty much in deep denial that anything happened between her and Chang or that he could be the father of her child, and as far as she was concerned Andre was the father of her baby; in her mind, there was no need for it. Furthermore, as a pretty traditional woman she might not have liked the idea.


    After fourth season 

  • What's going to happen to this show after the fourth season? Given that the entire premise revolves around a study group at a four year Community college, does that mean that it's pretty much predetermined that the fourth season will have to be the last?
    • Four seasons is still a lot. I would much prefer they end early and on a good note with people wanting more, than turning into some kind of Franchise Zombie
    • I think the "four years" thing was a self-imposed time limit by the show creators. This way they have a definite end, and it doesn't just peter out until the cast decide to leave.
    • Pierce has just revealed that he has been at Greendale 10 years before meeting the Study Group. If the show goes past four seasons and Pierce decides to stay, he could just as easily make friends with a new cast.
    • No.
    • Yes. Just because you do not like something does not mean it cannot happen.
    • This said, at this point it does look rather unlikely, Chevy Chase having quit the show and all.
    • In the event of the series continuing on after graduation, keep in mind that while the series is called "Community", this doesn't necessarily mean it has to be limited to the community college alone — "Community" can mean lots of things, after all, and the show went off campus a few times last season. Alternatively, Pierce has been taking different courses for twelve years now — who's to say that the other characters might not decide to hang around for a bit longer, or might not keep a foot in?
    • It's not as if the show is really about a community college anymore.
    • Well splitting the last two years into a season each gives 4 (for a total of 6 seasons which I'm sure they'd probably get if they last past 3), or even just the last year. That'd mean they'd be able to hit the magical 100 mark for Syndication as well.
    • Keep in mind that Pierce pretty much has no need to enroll in Greendale, but does anyway. This means that, even after the group graduates, they can still take classes in it.
    • Without wishing to be Deputy Downer here, it should possibly be noted that by all appearances the show will be very lucky if it even gets past the fourth season; it's never been a ratings hit, and what with the events of the third season (hiatus, Dan Harmon being replaced, the show being put in a Friday timeslot and given a reduced run), it's looking increasingly unlikely that we'll see anything of the study group after their fourth year at college.
    • In the episode where the dean has been replaced by Dopple Dean and the entire group goes to a therapist to help out Abed, the therapist says something along the lines of "Most community colleges don't even offer 4 year degrees" and as they all protest and defend the college, Jeff says "most community college students attend a school for 5-7 years." I don't know if those were his exact words, but 5-7 years was definitely the number. I took it as the writers lampshading this?
    • Dan Harmon adressed this directly saying that Jeff would definitely be leaving Greendale after four years but may still stay involved in the show, however, with Dan Harmon gone, the new writers might screw this up.
    • Or they might, you know, not. Let's at least wait to see if they do screw it up before moaning about them screwing it up; Dan Harmon, talented though he was, is not the only person capable of running a TV show after all.
    • #sixseasonsandamovie
    • Jeff only needing a history credit to graduate early is mentioned numerous times throughout the season, and it's implied the rest of the Study Group need to finish another semester before they can graduate. Season 5 will presumably follow the remaining members of the Study Group as they finish up their time at Greendale, which would leave a potential season 6 (To bring the episode count over 100 & make it easier to sell the show into syndication) as an epilogue showing us what everyone does after graduation. The "movie" would merely a multi-part Grand Finale.
    • This has now been resolved — Season 5 starts with Jeff gathering the group together as part of a scheme, and continues with them becoming students again (or, in Jeff's case, faculty).
    • Furthermore, it has been made clear since the beginning of the series that it is very hard to graduate from or leave Greendale.

    Shirley's maternity leave 

  • Unless there was a time skip of a few weeks between "Applied Anthropology and Culinary Arts" and "A Fistful of Paintballs", Shirley isn't taking any kind of maternity leave?
    • She is a headstrong woman of the 21st century who can wow a business class like nobody else can, there is nothing she can not do.
    • This is actually a case of fridge brilliance. Shirley gave birth during finals week, and the picnic was after finals week. So all she thought was going to happen was take a nice, short break from her new baby, leaving it with his father, and attend a relaxed, cowboy themed picnic. She had no clue it would turn insane, and when it did she repeatedly mentioned how much she wanted to go home.

    Abed remembering the zombie party 

  • How did Abed remember that Britta and Jeff hooked up in the episode with the zombies? Didn't they smash the Reset Button at the end by making everyone forget (and this impacted on the Chang/Shirley storyline)?
    • They probably erased only the memory of the zombies. So as far as they can remember it was just another boring costume party at the college.
    • Abed says explicitly that it's one of the only things he DOES remember from that night.
    • I discussed this one with a friend in real life, and came up with an acceptable solution (for my own personal canon at least). Abed runs on TV and film tropes, therefore on the night where nobody can remember anything Abed stores and files away a select few memories in his computer-like brain just in case a "clip show episode" type scenario comes up at a later date.
    • Britta and Jeff hooked up in the first paintball episode, not the zombie episode. Shirley and Chang hooked up in the zombie episode, and Chang left Troy a voice mail bragging about it. As for Britta and Jeff, Abed is just savvy enough to have observed their behavior together.
    • Yes they did hook up during the zombie episode, but it wasn't revealed until the clip show when Abed mentions he saw them going into the bathroom together that night before the outbreak.
    • Maybe it was early enough in the night, before they lost their memory.

    Culinary Arts 

  • Can someone tell me where the 'Culinary Arts' in the 'Applied Anthropology and Culinary Arts' comes from? Where did cooking come into the episode?
    • The "race kerfuffle" began during Greendale's World Food Festival.
    • Oh. The fact that we never even see any food threw me...
    • Yeah, it's a bit of a stretch. Maybe 'Applied Anthropology' wouldn't have been a funny enough name.
    • The way I took it was "Applied Anthropology and Applied Culinary Arts", as in, applied at high speed from across the cafetorium.

    Paintball closure 

  • How come in "A Fistful of Paintballs" / "For a Few Paintballs More" the paintball war has the potential to force the closure of the school while in the earlier "Modern Warfare" a similarly, if not more, destructive paintball war was cleaned up with no apparent problem (or risk of closure) in a matter of hours? Okay, there's the $100,000 cash prize in the second example, which Dean Spreck wants to stop anyone from Greendale winning in order to prevent anyone using it to clean up the school (as is implied to happen at the end), but there wasn't such a prize in "Modern Warfare" and yet apparently there was no problem in cleaning up the school then. What's changed?
    • Just spitballing, but it could be that the Dean was able to keep the school open after "Modern Warfare" by making the argument who would plan for such a disaster. The authority and big contributors to the endowment were willing to go along with it. Then the same disaster happens again one year later. The Dean isn't going to be able to convince anyone this time around.
    • The most likely thing seems that clean up from the first paintball war pretty much drained any savings Greendale had and having to clean up a second war would bankrupt the school.
    • Another thing to remember is that the $100,000 prize was sprung on the Dean at the last minute by Pistol Patty/Dean Spreck. Judging by him calling it a 'quick' game and saying that the mistake they made last year was having too valuable a prize, he assumed they'd be getting a smaller one (like a gift certificate to Pistol Patty's or something), and it wouldn't spiral out of control again. Also, given that Dean Spreck already had an army parked outside of Greendale since the beginning, he may have unleashed them regardless of how the game went, just to be sure the school got good and trashed.
    • A better question is why they would even consider having a paintball game on campus, roaming in and around the buildings, in the first place. There's no way that isn't going to wreck the place. I've participated in similar events at actual colleges, and they always use foam-dart guns and disc guns; yes, the students are going to be finding stray darts for years, but cleaning up a small amount of litter is rather cheaper than repainting walls, replacing carpets and broken windows, etc., not to mention that inexperienced players are far less likely to get badly hurt.
    • This is Greendale. It's not exactly the most competently or efficiently run example of a higher education facility.

    Beating Pierce 

  • In "Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking," how on Earth is it that Jeff is not arrested for savagely beating an old man 30 feet away from the front door of the hospital, who happens to be a patient at said hospital? It's not as if the study group were the only ones who saw that- several onlookers can be seen gathering in the background. Even more head-scratch-inducing is his being allowed to sleep 5 feet away from Pierce in his hospital room AFTER the smackdown.
    • No one likes Pierce. Hell, the nurses probably wanted to pay Jeff.
    • Considering the clear emotional distress that Jeff was going through coupled with the fact that Pierce was the direct cause of said distress, and considering that they essentially resolved the matter immediately afterward, presumably even if the appropriate authorities were called it was decided that no charges needed to be pressed. Presumably Pierce decided not to press charges. Plus, it's assault, certainly, but from what we see 'savage beating' is a bit of an overstatement of what happens; Jeff drags Pierce out of the car and roughs him up a bit on the ground before getting pulled off, it's not like he completely beat the crap out of Pierce or anything.

    Hating Pierce 

  • Why does Jeff still hate Pierce in the third season opener? You think he would get over it during the summer or something. It comes off as irrational as I find myself thinking Pierce is one of the more pleasant characters. Yes he comes off as racist but that's just one liners that don't really factor in overall. I do say he became crazy from isolation during season 2 which a few were his fault but the point is it sort of comes off as Pierce is a Designated Villain.
    • One: Jeff suffered the most of Pierce's actions. Two: Jeff's not exactly as forgiving as the others. It can be argued that, during the summer, he tried to cope with Pierce leaving, and ended up being glad he did. So, when he came back, he wasn't exactly too happy.
    • It's also repeatedly made clear — as far back as the pilot, in fact — that Jeff is secretly very afraid he'll end up like Pierce. Having Pierce around is therefore very uncomfortable for him.
    • Besides the previous stated distal causes for Jeff's behavior there is also a proximal cause for Jeff's strong reaction. The opening Imagination Spot is strongly suggested to have been kicked by Annie asking "What are we going to do without Pierce in the study group?". Jeff imagines an idealized version of Greendale. Potentially where their lives will be less crazy and weird, but they can be happy and have fun. The lines that have the biggest insight into Jeff's psyche come towards the end. First off "living forever". Jeff has had a tough time before dealing with his own mortality and Pierce is a constant reminder of growing old. The other one is "sleeping together" with Annie. He and Annie both acknowledge they have sexual tension, but due to multitude of factors haven't really approached it yet. One of those disagreements is over Pierce and his role in the group, with Annie being eternally optimistic and Jeff to put bluntly would be pessimistic. With Pierce gone that is one less thing, and likely a big one, to get distracted by and disagree over. This hope for a better Greendale experience comes crashing down in flames in less then a minute when Pierce abruptly shows up and ask to be back in the group. In summation: Cockblock.
    • Let's be fair; what Pierce did in "Intermediate Documentary Making" alone both went beyond being a Designated Villain — although, as Annie and Jeff often do, you can go backwards and forwards as to how much at fault the others are about it — and that by itself would be reason enough for Jeff to never want anything to do with Pierce ever again. He was obviously willing to let bygones be bygones thanks to Pierce's actions at the end of "A Few Paintballs More", but when Pierce rejected their overtures it's not hard to imagine that it wouldn't be too much effort for Jeff to shrug it off and end up on reflection being glad that Pierce did.

    Abed and Troy living together 

  • So Abed and Troy living together is no longer too much of a good thing (at the end of season 1 they decided not to live together)? I'm not against this happening and I know people change their minds but it seems like it suddenly happened out of nowhere. almost feels like it was just added into the script at the last minute.
    • Abed's reason for not wanting Troy as a roommate was that it might ruin the friendship. But then they spent another year as friends and came even closer, and even overcame liking the same girl. Abed figures if the girl couldn't break up their friendship, that living together won't either.
    • Also, in the first instance it was Abed's dorm, and thus his space. It's cool for Troy to come over and hang out, even staying with him for extended periods, but were he to officially move it it would get on his nerves. However, moving into a completely new apartment, it became their space and so easier to meet each other halfway. It's a very boring matter of semantics, but if you've ever tried to live with anybody else you'll understand.
    • Another point, that was at the end of Season 1 when Abed said "it'll Jump the Shark". By Season 3, Community had basically already Jumped the Shark, so Abed and Troy living together was acceptable
    • He meant that their friendship would jump the shark, not the show.

    Jeff spending money on Abed 

  • How much money did Jeff spend at Abed's surprise party? He bought a custom-made wallet that said "badass mother -Curse Cut Short", paid for the entire meal at a fancy restaurant which included wine and squab, he booked the diner, had to pay for "damages" at said diner to the tune of $800, and bought Abed's other gift for a thousand bucks. Considering he's no longer a lawyer, that seems to be a pretty hefty blow to his bank account.
    • The diner was presumably free— or close to free, since Brita worked there and managed clear the evening for them. I can't imagine the wallet costing very much, since it's an iconic item from an iconic film, therefore there must be tons of them available everywhere. (Almost like Fridge Brilliance: the wallet obviously was obviously a duplicate, which might have foreshadowed his gift to Abed...) For the rest, yeah, he probably spent a lot of money, but he's also seriously downsized his entire life by that point, so much as to move into a considerably cheaper apartment, so he probably has a little more money freed up than before. Still a blow, but not necessarily a fatal one.
    • You used to be able to get the Bad Mother** wallet in hipster stores for about $15.
    • As for the fancy restaurant meal, since Abed claimed he couldn't cover the bill as a pretext to get Jeff to return to the restaurant so that they could continue the party there with everyone else (although admittedly it's probably true that he couldn't afford it), it's possible that everyone else ended up chipping in to help cover the costs a bit in the spirit of the occasion. If nothing else, Pierce was there, and he could easily afford and be guilted / nagged / manipulated into coughing up at least part of the tab.
    • A dinner with mediocre wine at a decent restaurant costs around $100. According to a websearch, that's about a third of what a real celebrity lookalike or impersonator costs for even a short photo session — they're booked through an agency. For someone who uses such a service as often as Abed does in "Celebrity Impressionists," setting up a nice dinner to re-enact a movie is a comparatively small expense.

    Jeff's money 

  • Speaking of Jeff's bank account, how exactly is he paying for.... well, anything? He's not a lawyer anymore, and while his consulting gig probably helps, that's only been a factor since "Accounting for Lawyers." While he probably does have some savings from when he was a lawyer, and has moved into a smaller and cheaper apartment, he really comes off as living beyond his means.
    • Lawyers like Jeff (presumably for rich clients, as he's hinted) make a lot of money. So does consulting for lawyers of rich clientele. Remember the group's visit to his former firm? The place clearly caters to some wealthy people, and seems to benefit greatly from it. Assuming Jeff's new apartment and utilities don't cost too much, and that he wasn't a completely wanton spender with his savings (although his Italian sink fixtures may say otherwise), he probably has enough money to coast for quite a bit. It helps that Greendale is apparently extremely cheap, with classes that seem to cost seventy dollars or less per semester.
    • Also, being back in school would result in Jeff's student loans being deferred, if he still have any.
    • Remember that in "Accounting for Lawyers" Jeff's old firm offered him some work as a consultant? It's possible he had been doing some consulting work for them to pay the bills.

    Protecting Annie 

  • Was anyone else surprised by the intensity of Jeff's protectiveness towards Annie in "Geography of Global Conflict?" While there's ample precedent for it, he seemed uncharacteristically intense about it. Sure, the decidedly Jeff/Annie direction Season 3 has been going is a partial explanation, but I was left feeling like I'd somehow skipped a few episodes, especially since she was on the verge of ending their friendship in "Biology 101."
    • I think it's a sign of Character Development as well; Jeff seems to be gradually awakening to how much he really needs being around these people (witness his complete meltdown in "Biology 101" when it looks like he's been kicked out of the group), and since Annie's the one he's closest to she's the one to whom and around he expresses this attachment more directly.


  • They sure have a lot of alcohol at those parties and dances. I mean, I know the students at Greendale seem to be, on average, older than the regular high school graduates, but I thought it was the policy of most schools not to serve drinks at school functions that weren't specifically for of-age students.
    • Is there actually alcohol at the dances, though? The only person who's ever consistently drunk at those things is Duncan, and being drunk is his natural state. Besides him, I can't think of an instance of people drinking alcohol at a Greendale function.
    • Have you even been watching the show? They had alcohol at a lot of the dances. That was a major plot point in "The Politics of Human Sexuality" ("That's why you don't serve booze at an STD fair!")
    • Firstly, yes, every episode, stop being snippy. I honestly forgot about Politics of Human Sexuality involving booze - I just remembered the breaking condoms being the major problem. However, for most of the other dances and social events, it's never explicitly stated that there's alcohol being served at them, so it can't be assumed, especially after Human Sexuality. There's a difference between people being DRUNK at school events and people SERVING ALCOHOL at school events.
    • There was alcohol served at the parties in my college. You just can't serve it to the kids who are underage. All they have to do is card everyone before serving them or give out coloured bracelets or hand stamps or something, it's not some off-the-wall concept. Then again, I'm Canadian. Most students in college are old enough to drink, except for the ones fresh out of high school. Maybe it's different in the States.
    • Also it's Greendale. Doing things the right, or even legal, way isn't much of a concern for the school.

    Dean Dean Pelton 

  • Craig Pelton? I thought the Dean's name was Dean. When did that change? Or did I just mishear a joke in an earlier season?
    • I think his birth-name's always been Craig; 'Dean' is his official title as the administrative head of Greendale Community College; as well as a name it's an education title, usually used in higher education facilities. He does tend to over-use the Dean part, though, which might explain the confusion.
    • I was aware of the title of Dean, I just thought one of the earliest jokes was that his first name was also Dean, making him Dean Dean Pelton. Maybe I'm thinking of another show/movie altogether.
    • Ahhhh. I get ya now.
    • The confusion probably arises from the fact that "Dean Pelton" is the name of one of Dan Harmon's fellow alumni from his time at Channel 101. Harmon named the dean character after a person whose name actually was "Dean Pelton" for an inside joke/pun.

    Shirley baking 

  • In "Remedial Chaos Theory", why was Shirley baking so much? Was she having relationship problems with Andre? It could be why she started drinking along with Pierce's death.
    • The episode seemed to imply that it was more that baking is her way of feeling needed and included by the group; she feels excluded by the "googly eyes" interactions everyone else (except Pierce) has and wants some way of getting their attention.
    • I thought it was an incredibly meta analysis of Shirley's character. She always had the shortest stick when it came to character development. So far she has been established as a religious middle aged mother who likes to bake. Its so stereotypical its painful. And even Jeff and Co. think so. I thought it came off as a promise to either build more character into Shirley, or at least stray away from being so damn homely all the time.
    • From the same episode—what the hell was with Britta trying to marry the pizza guy? This show is zany but that's just insane.
    • I posted in Wild Mass Guessing that Britta got high with the pizza guy, since he bugs out in stoned fashion as well when he hears Abed mention alternate timelines.
    • Or he could have been stoned already, and they both bonded over how stoned they were; everyone else makes a point of noting how weird he seemed.
    • Although she doesn't smoke up in the bathroom in this timeline, it's implied in the episode that Britta's already a bit high before getting to the party, so the drugs are probably affecting her abilities to reason a bit; the whole thing has 'something which seemed like an awesome idea at the time when drunk / high but when you've sobered up the truly disastrous implications make themselves apparent' written all over it. Plus, it's been established previously that Britta has truly terrible taste in men.


  • What was the point of the Dreamatorium, the big room Troy and Abed refused to part with in the latest episode? Kinda made them look like asses.
    • That was kind of the point. To elaborate, Dan Harmon has previously stated he felt that the writers used Abed and his meta-knowledge and pop culture referencing to be the hero of the story. Harmon wanted to further explore the negative effects this would have for Abed interacting with people. Troy does a pretty good job summing up the situation saying that sometimes they just get caught up in their own world of make believe and don't take other peoples feeling into consideration. But when they realize there is a problem they do the right things in the end. So it is a cautionary tale, a reminder that even Abed and Troy with their popular aspects have problems just like the rest of the study group.
    • To add to the above, it's also a reminder that although we find Troy and Abed and their antics amusing and charming, that's because we only spend twenty-odd minutes a week with them at most, like Annie's only really spent a few hours a week hanging out with and studying with them at school and elsewhere. If you had to live with them, however, they could very easily become very insufferable very quickly; while the point is fairly made that Annie might indeed have to lighten up a bit to live with them, it's an equally valid point that Troy and Abed also have to moderate their immaturity and make accommodations themselves for her.


  • This is a minor thing, but in Regional Holiday Music, Annie mispronounces "Bubbe." It's with a soft U, not a hard one, for the record.
    • Although considering that the whole joke is that Troy mistakes "bubbe" for a certain part of the female anatomy, this one can probably be chalked up to Rule of Funny.
    • In Annie's defense, this Jewish troper pronounces it exactly the way she does. It's a bit of an anglicized corruption, but it's not uncommon among assimilated Jews.

    Rat project 

  • Minor thing but Abed and Troy already took Biology. In "Environmental Science", they're talking about their rat project. Did they just retake it, solely to be with the study group?
    • I'm pretty sure there is also a scene in season 1 where Annie is carrying around a biology text book. It is possible that all three took a different introductory biology course (e.g. Animal Biology, Ecology, or Evolution) than the one they are taking in third season.

    You just became my hero 

  • One thing that has bugged me for a while during my extensive re-viewings of the show. Why, in Cooperative Calligraphy (the bottle episode), does Jeff say to Troy that "you just became my hero". For some reason, I simply cannot figure this out.
    • It's when he discovers that Troy carries nothing to school with him in his bag but a pillow/cushion (no pens, paper, textbooks, etc), presumably to either (a) make sitting down more comfy or, almost certainly more likely, (b) so that he can lie on it and get a quiet snooze in comfort during a particularly boring class or lecture. Jeff, for his part and given his own proclivities towards getting the best possible result for the minimum amount of effort, is expressing admiration for the fact that Troy is savvy enough to bring a pillow to sleep on and / or is quite possibly the one person at Greendale who apparently puts less effort into his studies than Jeff himself. Either that or, as is his usual state, he's just being incredibly sarcastic.


  • The plotline of the study group being expelled. The show established that it is the Air-Conditioner repairing annex which holds all the real power in Greendale, and Vice Dean Laybourne swore to get Troy to join him, so why wouldn't he have stepped in to stop Troy from being expelled?
    • Perhaps this partially has to do with the fact that the annex likes to operate in shadow. Laybourne may be powerful, but he's no Magnificent Bastard, and seems unwilling to step into the limelight directly outside of 1 on 1 dealings. The other part of this might be because the school board might be slightly more powerful than Laybourne, and for him to ask that only Troy not be expelled would raise suspicions. Or, to make things simple, they couldn't afford to bring back John Goodman for that episode.
    • Laybourne didn't do anything because Troy getting expelled in fact plays right into Laybourne's hands; it potentially gives Laybourne leverage over Troy. "Want you and your friends to get back into Greendale? Well, remember that offer I made you about joining the AC Repair Annex...?"
    • This is also spelled out rather clearly before the heist; an AC worker under Laybourne tells Troy that he "doesn't have a horse in the race" and so has no reason to help the Seven, unless Troy were to join the Annex. When the heist starts going sideways, Troy nods to the camera to have a unit deactivated, essentially accepting the deal.

    Camera in the Dean's office 

  • Isn't there a camera in the Dean's office? That's how they got some footage in "Pillows and Blankets." So why didn't anyone catch the Dean's imposter revealing himself during "Course Listing Unavailable"?
    • The most obvious people with access to a security camera recording would be campus security. Guess who has a vested interest in making sure the Dean's imposter is not revealed.
    • OR the air conditioner repairmen, who also have their reasons for withholding that information, at least until they can talk Troy into joining their ranks.

    Flawed teacher and credit 

  • Season 1, they find out that the guy teaching their class has no credentials whatsoever (and haven't taken their final yet), but they still get a Spanish credit. Season 3, their teacher retires before the final and they get robbed of any credit? That just seems inconsistent.
    • In Season 1, they manage to get a replacement teacher in before the end of the year. Presumably they can't afford to hire one at such short notice in Season 3.
    • Pelton has grown attached to them and wants to keep them there as long as possible. It's a pretty bad school.
    • Also, it might be that officially the credit is simply "incomplete", and they have to attend summer school in order to complete it. The study group are just lashing out in frustration anyway.

    Blue tinge 

  • Why do Pierce's glasses always have a blue tinge to them?
    • They don't always. He also has a pair that have a yellowish-brownish tint.
    • As for why he's always wearing tinted glasses, it probably has something to do with light sensitivity; it's a common problem with older people as their eyes deteriorate. It's a way of underscoring that he's getting older. Also, if memory serves, I believe Chevy Chase wears similar glasses in real life so it's probably something that's transferred over from actor to character.
    • Or his glasses just have a blue tint.
    • He thinks tinted glasses make him look "cooler."


  • Was the "young Britta being molested by a man in a dinosaur costume" a later development? It seems weird that she'd dress up like a dinosaur in "Epidemology" and not really being mad at Troy in "Competitive Wine Tasting" for faking being molested?
    • Well, it seems to originate from this website which was set up as part of the show's initial promotion in 2009, so it's presumably been kicking around for a while. As for the contradictions, it's possible that Britta has recovered sufficiently to be able to wear a dinosaur costume and forgive Troy easily, or that she's doing so as part of an attempt to 'reclaim' and thus gain control over her past as opposed to letting it define her. Trauma also affects people in different ways, so it's possible that while she was affected by the incident it didn't extend to the dinosaur costume (most likely, it expressed itself in her rather distorted views of men as a gender instead). Alternatively, it's perhaps worth noting that in the same episode the crux of Evil!Abed's Breaking Speech to Britta is that she's completely and thoroughly average; it could be that she's distorting or over-exaggerating the incident in order to give herself something to make her seem 'special', hence why she is comfortable dressing as a dinosaur and is able to easily forgive Troy.
    • I'm not sure if the website is the source of the story, but the first reference in the show itself is in Pascal's Triangle Revisited, when Professor Duncan mentions it as one of the "bugs on the windshield of [her] mind that she'll never be able to squeegee." So all the events of the subsequent seasons should be informed by it (both of the ones you cite certainly).
    • Evil Abed could be confronting Britta with her worst fear - that she is average, that it was not important and she is exaggerating, as much as many sexual abuse victims fear in real life. We know her father sided with the man in question when she confronted him and that she's affected enough by the incident to be visibly upset when she was telling Evil Abed about it. And then she considers dying her hair.
    • Of course, Britta's dinosaur costume has tiny, useless arms...
    • It is also entirely possible, of course, that the writers have decided to downplay or ignore the whole 'dinosaur costume' thing entirely. Considering that that long-ignored website is pretty much the only concrete evidence that exists to suggest that molestation is canonically part of Britta's backstory (and even that appears to have been deleted, if clicking the above link is any indication), it's entirely possible that the writers simply decided not to develop it further (for understandable reasons, given that, well, child molestation is kind of a comedy killer unless you want to go full Dead Baby Comedy route, which Community rarely-if-ever does). Consider that when we meet Britta's parents in Season 6 it never comes up, which is a natural time for it to arise (particularly since the plot of that episode is the rest of the group failing to understand Britta's resentment of her parents — kind of an obvious thing to point out, no?). It seems like the backstory that Britta was molested as a child has been quietly dropped, meaning that there's no reason for her not to wear a dinosaur costume, and that Evil!Abed was instead likely using another traumatic memory to attack her (getting spooked by a man in a dinosaur costume at a birthday party, for example).

    Annie's money 

  • Where does Annie get her money from? She's living with Troy and Abed and paying rent but her parents cut her off after she went into rehab and she's never mentioned any kind of work or a job. I know she used to live above Dildopolis because it was cheap but she still has to pay that rent. And she doesn't want to accept charity from Pierce. Everyone else is shown to have a source of income (although Britta was fired from that diner) - did I just miss it?
    • I'm pretty sure she once mentioned that she had money saved up from before her parents disowned her, but I don't think she has a job.
    • At the end of that very episode, she mentioned how the money she saved was running out way sooner than she expected and decided to get a job.

    Heidi's name 

  • This is a small one: I don't get what Dr Heidi's name is supposed to be a Stealth Pun of. Is it Jekyll & Hyde? Someone explain the joke to me please?
    • He's Heidi-ng (hiding) his true identity from the study group.

    Ben's father 

  • Who is the father of Shirley's baby, really? Alternately, just how long are the semesters at Greendale? If she gives birth during finals and the baby is obviously not premature, it couldn't have been conceived at Halloween or early November, unless they're having finals in August. Should we assume that it's finals for a summer semester?
    • These questions are all pretty much solved by the same thing, which I will present in parts ordered by your questions: 1: As far as we know, Shirley's husband is the father. He is apparently all-black, according to the reaction of every character who commented on it (which points toward two black parents instead of one black and one Chinese), and he doesn't have a tail (which according to Chang, Chang babies always have. I'd take anything he says with at least a grain of salt, especially since I'm pretty sure tails are more complicated than being a purely dominant trait, but since he wanted to be the father I'd take it with just a grain of salt instead of the usual spoonful). It's not definite, but it's very, very probably that Ben Bennet is Andre's biological son. 2: The semesters are probably about normal. 3: The baby was premature, Shirley said it wasn't due yet even when she was still insisting it was Andre's baby, which would have meant a conception around Labor Day weekend (early September; presumably, Shirley was crabby around the time of her missed period later on, possibly because of her missed period, which gave Abed a false data point). I would assume the "non-obviously-preemie" effect is related to the Three-Month-Old Newborn effect (in that it might have been a bit expensive to commission a one-month premature black baby prop and just bought/rented the closest thing available. It might even be The Coconut Effect, since a baby like that would seem premature relative to a Three-Month-Old Newborn without being a straight-up Body Horror for unversed viewers). 4: It WAS premature, and it WASN'T conceived around Halloween/Early November, so there's no reason to assume they were retaking weeks of their Anthropology class during the summer, especially since nobody said they had done so (further support for "not summer finals": Pistol Patty's plot would probably have been planned pre-summer semester, since there would probably have been fewer students in the summer semester than in the spring semester). Eight months after early September is early-to-mid May.

    Abed predicting people 

  • How can Abed be able to make eerily accurate movies about his friends, based on how his friends would react to stuff, as well as do flawless impersonations of everyone in the Dreamatorium, if he's as bad at interacting with people as the show indicates? Like not understanding when someone is messing with him, or that people might be hurt by things he says? Either he isn't very good at reading people or understanding them, which is why he sometimes hurts feelings or misunderstands a situation, or he's very, very good at reading and understanding people, enough so that he can predict their exact reactions to finding out a friend is living in his car and how he'd react to them finding out (in which case he's just a dick because he knows people will get hurt by things he says, but doesn't care enough to keep from saying them). I just don't see how it's possible to give a character that much awareness of other characters as well as the amount of social awkwardness and lack of empathy he's shown with.
    • Knowing someone and caring about someone are two entirely different things.
    • Note also that in the later example, his impersonations of his friends are clearly established as not flawless at all; he's got the surface impressions down pat, but ultimately they're superficial and based on his own insecurities. His projection of how Troy and Britta's date will go turns out to be completely wrong, after all. Ultimately, he's perceptive when it comes to the surface impressions that people give very well, but when it comes to deeper stuff he has more trouble.
    • I took that as part of Abed's Character Development showing him developing into more of a human being with emotions rather than a pop-culture referencebot.
    • Also, Abed treats Real Life as a TV show. You wouldn't care about someone insulting a TV show, would you?
    • A lot of people would.
    • And a lack of empathy doesn't mean that you don't care about someone, only that you can't understand what they're feeling. Abed sympathizes with his friends, even if he can't truly empathize with them and understand what they're going through. Outside of "Debate 109" his predictions barely reach 50% accuracy.

    Remedial Chaos Theory timeline bleedthrough 

  • In Community S3 E04: Remedial Chaos Theory Britta smokes pot, Pierce brings an evil troll doll to scare Troy, and Annie has a gun in her purse. In the main timeline, do any of these things actually exist. Britta smoking pot isn't such a stretch, but Annie having a gun and Pierce bring the troll doll, those were just part of Abed's speculative alternate realities, right?
    • This one depends on whether you accept the other timelines as actually existing or simply being part of Abed's speculations; the episode suggests that either option is possible. If the former, then of course they exist. If the latter, then Abed is making projections based on his understanding of the other characters and how they are likely to act; he knows that Annie lives in a very questionable neighbourhood and as such is likely to have purchased something to protect herself with; her owning a firearm isn't out of the question. Similarly, Pierce is spiteful, eccentric and no doubt holding a grudge over Troy moving out, so is likely to try and do something to sabotage it (as for the troll doll itself, it's possible that Troy told Abed about his fear of it).
    • Didn't another episode reference Annie having a gun? I can't remember where or when, but for some reason my brain is insisting that the gun was mentioned at some point other than in that episode.
    • The conspiracy theory episode did, but it was part of a joke.
    • A joke that, in Annie's own admission, started getting a bit real.
    • Annie had that gun because of the bad neighborhood she was living in.
    • As for the troll doll, in Paranormal Parentage you can see one of the trolls missing from the rotating bookcase in Pierce's study. So it seems Pierce did bring the doll to Troy and Abed's housewarming party, and threw it away.

    Evil!Abed's plans 

  • What happened to Evil!Abed's plans? In the tag for Remedial Chaos Theory, his plan was to somehow access the Prime timeline, get rid of the Prime group, and take over their lives. When he finally shows up in Introduction To Finality, he instead tries to recreate the Dark Timeline.
    • In a way, the two aren't that dissimilar; in recreating the Dark Timeline, he is replacing the Prime group with their darker selves and thus taking over their lives. His Breaking Speech to Britta crushes her spirit sufficiently to prompt her to consider dying her hair — just as she did in the Dark Timeline. His plans for Jeff included cutting his arm off — which is pretty much what happened to Dark Timeline Jeff.
    • Plus, as he and his timeline is fictional, it is literally impossible for him to bring the others from that timeline over. The only way he can 'invade' is via altering the group into those people.
    • To be fair, the 'fictional' bit is potentially debatable, as there is an element of Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane about the whole 'Darkest Timeline' thing. This said, whether the other timelines have some form of existence or not (and this kind of gets into quantum mechanics, which is a whole other debate), it probably is impossible to travel between them anyway, so the point is much the same.
    • This isn't fully resolved by "Advanced Introduction to Finality," but the implication is very strong that none of these timelines existed anywhere except Abed and Jeff's imaginations.
    • No matter what, it could go either way. Remember, this is a show where a Zombie Apocalypse was started with "taco meat" from the military and stopped with air conditioners.

    Season 4 and the AC Annex 

  • Regarding season 4: So far, we are four episodes in, and there has been no mention at all of Troy studying Air Conditioning Repair (I really expected it to come up when, in the recent episode, we got the signature 'ribbons indicate air flowing through the vents' shot, but that just ended up being about a bad smell). As far as I understood from the season 3 finale, he didn't stop going there, it's just that once he convinced them to not be so crazy he could go back to hanging out with his friends. And yet, in this season he's been going to classes with them as usual, and no explanation. Like I said, not even a single mention of the Air Conditioning Repair Annex. This has been a major story arc, last season; what happened to it?
    • He's the One True Repairman or whatever. I remember him saying in one episode that he used his authority as the air-conditioning Chosen One to command the Repair Annex to act like a regular school, instead of all the crap they'd been doing up till then. So now he can take his air conditioning repair classes as well as hang out with his friends and take Biology with them. It was a major arc, then they wrapped it up in the episode with the Sun Chamber.
    • Pretty sure Troy mentions in a blink-and-you'll-miss-it line that he's finished the required AC repair classes (probably a moment of Fridged Brilliance since he's such a prodigy at air conditioner repair) and basically gets to do whatever he wants now, in part because he finished and in part because he's their Messiah.

    Season 4 timing 

  • When does Season 4 take place? They start off after summer, but the season three ending already started off after the summer.
    • Season 3 ends after they complete their summer course, and Season 4 starts when they're about to start the first main semester of the year. So Season 4 probably starts a couple of days / weeks after Season 3.
    • The first episode takes place at the start of school year, in August. The next episode is Halloween, and they start History after that. The class finishes around February, as evidenced "Basic Human Anatomy" being stated to be a year after "Virtual Systems Analysis" - Both episodes would have aired around Valentines if not for the second half of season 3 & the entirety of season 4 being pushed back.

    Susan B Anthony dance 

  • What would a Susan B. Anthony dance be, anyway? Everyone wears "give women the vote!" sashes, and it's otherwise perfectly normal? Only the girls get to vote for the King and Queen (or just Queen, or just President) of the dance? Every Susan B. Anthony dollar that Britta can find (that being approximately five coins, including a spray-painted Sacagawea dollar) gets hung from the ceiling on ribbons?
    • Probably; given that Britta was opposing the Sadie Hawkins dance and throwing her own out of typically Straw Feminist-inclined knee-jerk contrariness more than anything else, some kind of rushed and slapdash thrown-together tribute to Susan B. Anthony that vaguely misses the point along the lines of the above suggestions seems pretty likely.
    • And why would a self-proclaimed feminist object to a Sadie Hawkins dance in the first place? Generally, a temporary reversal of gender roles is something that feminists like because it forces people to question those roles.
    • Granted, there is the argument that having an 'exception' to the 'rule' that men always ask women out could help strengthen the rule that women 'aren't allowed' to do that normally, and instead have to be 'given permission' to do that by the exception. But that's a weaksauce explanation, and Britta doesn't even use it.
    • And the protest of that by starting another dance makes no sense, as Britta never specifics who can ask each other out to that one.
    • And of course, the origin of a Sadie Hawkins dance is stupidly sexist (Women chase men through town, and if they catch them, force them to get married), over in in Li'l Abner, but Britta doesn't appear to know that either.
    • So she's just rebelling for no justification at all, which strangely manages to be slightly out of character for Britta. Does she think that Sadie Hawkins is an actual person who shouldn't be honored?
    • I'm not sure I follow, entirely; surely 'rebelling for no justification at all' is, by this point, a pretty major part of Britta's character. She's pretty contrarian ("No to everything you both said!"), and tends to get self-righteous on the flimsiest of pretexts anyway, so it's hardly that out of the ordinary for her to latch onto something that seems vaguely problematic (whether she fully understands why or not) and kick up a stink about it.

    Britta revealing supposed molestation 

  • In the episode when Troy pretends he was molested, why doesn't Britta get called out by anyone when she blurts his "secret" out in front of anyone and makes a big scene about it? Okay, yeah, it never actually happened, but why did she think it was okay to take something that, to her knowledge, Troy had intentionally kept very private, and tell everyone when Pierce was being a mild dick? Especially if Troy didn't seem particularly affected by it (because he wasn't molested, but again, she didn't know that yet). Britta is going to be a terrible therapist if this is the stuff she does; she had no right to reveal personal information like that without Troy's permission. I'm really glad that Troy was lying, because can you imagine how shitty it would be to have someone you trusted reveal your darkest secret in front of everyone like that? I pity her future patients.
    • To be entirely fair to her, this particular example occurred long before she actually started studying to be a therapist; as such, while she's clearly not the most capable therapist ever it's hardly a fair place to start judging her future abilities, since she's probably learnt better since then. There are, as discussed on this page I believe, several hints throughout the series that suggest that Britta herself has been the victim of molestation in the past, which makes this a particularly emotive and sore spot for her; the mildness of Pierce's dickery or otherwise, she was acting out of protectiveness for not just a friend but someone she's possibly considering a kindred spirit at this point, and so let her emotions get in the way. Even trained therapists aren't automatons, and Britta isn't close to being a trained therapist at that point.
    • Plus, let's be honest; she probably doesn't get called out on it because it's revealed moments later that Troy is lying about being molested, which — for all that the OP brushes it off a bit — is the bigger case of dickery in that particular scenario. Troy has no grounds for getting indignant about Britta betraying his trust whatsoever, because he's betrayed her trust first and in a far more serious manner. He already looks like an asshole in this situation, so if he was to try and turn it around by getting self-righteous about Britta betraying a secret that wasn't even true in the first place, that would just make him look like an even bigger asshole. Especially since unlike Troy, at least Britta could justifiably claim that she was well-intentioned in trying to stick up for a friend.

    Paintball rules 

  • So, in "For a Few Paintballs More" Dean Spreck states that it doesn't matter how they got paint on them, just that whoever did was eliminated. At that point, why didn't the Greendale students keep going even after they were shot? They could've hidden someone away, whilst the rest of the students went to war & eliminated all of the City College students, and since they didn't get paint on them, would win the game by the stated rules.
    • This is roughly, in a roundabout way, what they did; Pierce's whole plan is based on this. As for why they didn't keep going after they were shot because that's against the rules anyway; Spreck would have just ruled that any hits caused by Greendale players after they'd been eliminated were void. Unfair, certainly, but then he's hardly playing fair to begin with. There's also City College players everywhere, meaning a lack of viable hiding places to begin with, and one of the plans involves covering literally everything in the school with paint so that rules out pretty much any of the interior buildings.

    Jeff and e-mail 

  • Why does Jeff still use his college email account after finding out that the Dean was reading his personal emails?
    • It's policy in many colleges / university that internal communication between, say, staff and students (and often students and other students, although this is obviously harder to enforce) be done entirely through the internal email network, ironically often for reasons of privacy. So he likely has little choice; if he wants to keep informed of what's going on with his classes and lectures, assessments, etc, then he'll have to keep using his college email. I'd be amazed if he uses it for anything personal outside of the bare essentials, though.
    • Original poster here. I actually meant for his personal emails, as we see that the Dean knows about Jeff's plans to meet his father over Thanksgiving in Season 4 - something he wanted to keep secret from everyone else.
    • Ahhhh, I get ya. In which case, I'd guess that either (a) Jeff still uses his college email for personal emails for convenience or (b) the Dean, being just a wee bit of a stalker, has hacked into another of Jeff's email accounts without Jeff finding out yet. Alternatively — and this might conflict with the episode, but I can't remember — the Dean could have found out another way (he lives in the apartment next door, and I'd be astonished if he didn't listen in on Jeff every so often).
    • Alternatively, he found out by reading another member of the study group's e-mail.

    Magnitude and his Catch Phrase 

  • What happens if someone other than Magnitude uses his Catchphrase?
    • Magnitude has an identity crisis.
    • Confirmed in "Economics of Marine Biology."

    Jeff and Dean sexual harassment 

  • Why has Jeff never told the Dean to stop with the sexual harassment?
    • Rule of Funny, although I believe he has once or twice. The thing, telling someone to stop doing something isn't a magic spell that automatically makes them stop doing something — the Dean simply ignored him. Even if he has, while the Dean's unquestionably inappropriate towards Jeff he's also more or less harmless and innocent, he (usually) means well, and Jeff's the kind of guy who doesn't believe in creating more trouble for himself than he has to, so he simply rolls his eyes and suffers the (relatively) minor inconvenience rather than do anything that might put himself out.
    • Jeff told him to stop reading his emails, he never said anything about the harassment.
    • Presumably he sees it as benign enough to (mostly) ignore (I might not, but he does). Luckily, the Dean seems not to subject other students to the same treatment.
    • This was one of the things that got worse in Season 4, where the Dean started to seem less like somebody with a crush he's unable to hide and more like, well, somebody engaging in full-blown sexual harassment (which is not funny). They seem to have pulled back from it a tad.
    • It's a handle he can use to control the Dean — it's basically a near-unlimited number of second chances. Jeff may be neurotic in a lot of ways, but he doesn't seem particularly insecure about his sexuality. Once the Dean starts stalking him it's another matter, but that's more of a fourth season oddity than anything else.

    Jeff's name 

  • Simple one. Why didn't Jeff's mom change his name after his dad left to her maiden name, Fitzgerald? Around the time he left was when Shirley bullied him into moving, so it's not like people around him would need to get used to it. Plus, it would be hard for his mom since the name reminded her of her ex-husband, and Jeff would likely be for the change knowing his dad abused and insulted him, then abandoned him.
    • The Doylist explanation is, of course, that the character of Jeff Winger was created and named before his Disappeared Dad was, and when his dad was named someone presumably goofed up and gave his dad the same last name as Jeff. As for an in-universe Watsonian explanation... maybe Jeff's mother did change their names, but Jeff adopted his dad's name when he went into professional practice because he thought it sounded more dynamic than Jeffrey Fitzgerald (and, symbolically, to unconsciously underscore how he and his dad were Not So Different).
    • I'm not sure that this would actually be all that unusual. He was probably used to the name and saw no reason to change it (or maybe thought that even going through the trouble of changing it would be a sick tribute to how much his dad's leaving scarred him).
    • Why change it? It won't change the way mustard tastes.
    • Because it's rare to change back to you maiden name. Speaking as a child of divorce and as a friend of other children of divorce, all of us carry our fathers last name. It's an American cultural convention.
    • Not sure about Colorado, but in many states is very difficult to legally change the last name of a minor. It took literal years for this troper to get her last name changed while under the age of 18, requiring the hunting down of the biological father so he could have the legal right to contest the change if he wanted to and several other bits of legal hoop jumping. It's very possible that Jeff's mom decided it was too much trouble to change Jeff's last name.

    Troy and Abed apology (or lack thereof) 

  • Does it bother anyone else that Troy and Abed don't actually apologize to each other at the end of "Pillows and Blankets?" They confront each other after Troy intercepts Abed's hurtful e-mail and Abed reads Troy's texts, but they don't apologize then, Abed just says Troy wasn't supposed to see that. But even at the end when Jeff goes and gets their magic friendship hats neither of them ever actually says "I'm sorry" for any of their previous actions. To me it kind of makes their whole reconciliation feel unearned, especially since otherwise the episode took their feud very seriously.
    • The point of the friendship hats isn't so much to force an apology from the two of them as it is to get Troy and Abed to realise / remember how much they value their friendship and that it's not worth letting the spat they're embroiled in irrevocably destroy it. Once they've realized that and stopped fighting, the specific apologies can come later when things have cooled down a bit further. In any case, different people come to terms with each other in different ways; sometimes a verbal apology is required, sometimes a gesture (such as Troy and Abed renewing their special handshake) is all that's necessary.
      • Debateable. The core issue of their feud in Digital Exploration of Interior Design and Pillows and Blankets stemmed from what happened at the end of Contemporary Impressionists, where Troy (justifiably) accuses Abed of being inconsiderate of his friends, after they all worked to free him from debt and Abed doesn’t seem to care, but continues to hire celebrity impersonators. Troy points out a very real issue he has with their friendship, which Abed seems to grudgingly accept by agreeing to letting Troy tell him what to do sometimes. It doesn’t seem like he is truly willing to compromise when he dismisses Troy’s ideas. It’s not a satisfying resolution to the argument, because while they both acknowledge they value their friendship, they still don’t address the reason they were fighting in the first place.
      • But that's the thing; arguments like this don't always have a satisfactory resolution. Underlying issues like this aren't always neatly addressed and resolved. Because they're based on people's flaws, and people don't instantly solve their flaws and improve themselves. At the end of the episode, Troy and Abed were essentially faced with a choice — did they want to maintain their friendship, flaws and imperfections and all, or did they want to let these flaws destroy the friendship? At that point, they decided the friendship was valuable even with this in mind, and decided to keep it. Because if they did, and kept working at it, these flaws could be addressed and fixed over time, or at least become more bearable. No, the "friendship hats" don't instantly resolve the underlying issue, but they provide a way of resolving the immediate problem in a way that could, with work and care, gradually help resolve the underlying issue.

    Shirley knowing Jeff's age 

  • In "GI Jeff," Shirley reveals that she knew Jeff was already 40, presumably because she knew him as a child ("Foosball and Noctural Vigilantism"), and knew that she was 42. But she's been saying that she was only a few years older than Jeff since the first season, when he was still lying to everyone. So how did she know he was only two years younger than her then, rather than 7? And why didn't she mention that he was lying about his age when she found out they knew each other as children? I mean, other than the obvious reason.
    • And as an addendum, how did Pierce not discover Jeff's secret back in season 2 when he investigated Jeff's father?
    • I don't know how she knew exactly, but she probably worked it out somehow; they knew each other when they were kids, he pretty clearly wasn't seven years younger than her then, so it's pretty reasonable to guesstimate that he's maybe just a couple of years younger than her. As for why neither of them mentioned it, probably because neither of them really thought it was that big a deal; the guy's clearly pretty vain, so it's hardly a huge leap that he'd lie about his age, and who really cares if he does? As far as they're concerned, if Jeff wants to pretend he's a few years younger, what's the harm?
    • But she didn't know she knew him as a child until the third season (she's shocked to discover he's "Tinkletown"). Yet in the first season she insists they're "basically the same age" (the real 2 years), rather than a 7-year age gap. And it still doesn't make sense why Pierce, being out to get Jeff as he was in season 2, wouldn't use his vanity as a weakness. And why he wouldn't make some comment about how Jeff's parents married two years after he was born. It just feels like this "twist" could've been a little better planned...assuming they actually planned it at all.
    • Again; she just guessed. It's not exactly rocket science; she can probably figure out just by looking at him (and, let's be honest, knowing him) that Jeff isn't as young as he claims to be (heck, the other members of the study group don't even have this tenuous connection to 'Tinkletown', but they've still clearly suspected that Jeff's been lying about his age, so why wouldn't Shirley?). In any case, Shirley claiming that she and Jeff are "basically the same age" is hardly her admitting that she's worked out his age to the exact year or anything; just that she suspects they're closer in age than he lets on. (Also, when exactly did Shirley say that to Jeff? I remember her saying it to Britta, so I'm possibly missing something.) As for Pierce, if you really wanted to wound someone and make them suffer why use the mildly-uncomfortable-but-not-really-that-big-a-deal-in-the-long-run weakness of a man lying about his age because he's a little insecure about it as a weapon when you can use the much more devastating weakness of his abandonment issues caused by his estranged father as a weapon? Had Pierce exposed Jeff's age in Season 2, the result from everyone would most likely be more or less the same as the result in this episode — a pretty resounding "Meh, whatever, we kind of thought that anyway." Not to mention that the trouble in this episode stemmed from Jeff actually reaching the big four-oh, whereas three years ago this would have slightly less of a problem.
    • So, what, people only have crises about their age at ten-year milestones? In my personal experience, I have crises when they're related to where my parents were at that age. Jeff's father was 36 when he abandoned them, which would have been what had been established as his age in every previous episode that mentioned it. What was the point of this retcon?
    • No, not necessarily; just that it's (in my personal experience and understanding, at least) rather common for people to particularly experience age-related crises of this nature when they hit the milestone of forty (certainly, it seems fairly common in fiction at least), and I'm simply working off the assumption that Jeff is one of them. But yeah, for what it's worth, as I understand it a lot of people do tend to fret over their age more when they reach a particular milestone rather than the ages in between (that's kind of partly why we consider them 'milestones' in the first place — culturally we consider significant moments in our lives). For one example, I'm willing to bet more people would enter a mid-life crisis at the age of forty than they would at thirty-three or thirty-six. Not everyone compares their age to what their parents were doing at that exact age. Not everyone has the exact same personal experiences or goes through their hang-ups about their age in the exact same way, and I'm just willing to accept that this is the point where Jeff reached a serious crisis about his age more than you. And the 'point' of this retcon was simply to facilitate the telling of this story. Maybe not the best of reasons, but that's it.
    • More discrepancies: Jeff tells his father in season 4 that he faked an appendectomy in seventh grade 22 years ago. For that to work with him bein 40 in season 5, he'd have to have been 16 or 17 in seventh grade. Why would he lie to his father, who knew when he was born?
    • He probably wouldn't; this one can presumably be chalked up to Dan Harmon's absence and the different production team in Season 4, thus creating some discrepancies in how they approach the character. It's just a minor retcon.
    • Harmon's treated everything else that season as canon, why isn't this being observed as canon? And when multiple episodes have established someone's age, that's not "minor," that's a pretty big retcon, with very little justification.
    • Okay dude, "retcon" might not have been the best choice of words, but my point was that it was something easily overlooked, particularly if you had nothing to do with writing that particular scene, episode or season; Harmon's clearly kept the broad strokes of what happened in season 4 as canon (i.e. he's not denying there was ever an episode where Jeff confronted his Disappeared Dad at Thanksgiving), but that doesn't mean he's got perfect recall of or cares about every single line of dialogue that was spoken in that episode. He likely just forgot about that particular line (or didn't care about it, deciding that the story he wanted to tell in this episode was more important than fidelity to a single line spoken in a season that he publicly doesn't care for). It happens. And to be honest, Community would be far from the first show where this kind of thing has happened, so it's probably not worth getting too upset over it. It's annoying, but at some point you do have to remember the MST3K Mantra.
    • Also, what were these multiple episodes where Jeff's age was directly confirmed aside from the example you mentioned? You keep referring to multiple examples where this has been confirmed but I honestly can't remember them.
    • I fail to see how adding a few years to Jeff's age isn't a minor retcon. Even assuming several episodes did confirm his age (which, like the poster above me, I do not actually remember happening so it's hard to say how significant or ironclad those confirmations are to start with), it's not like they have changed some integral part of his character. It's a slight smudge to the timeline is all, barely more significant than the retcon in Season 4 where Troy's career-ending kegflip injury was his knee instead of his shoulders.
    • Did he say 22 years ago? I don't remember the exact line, but isn't it just that he kept it under his bed for 22 years? Or until he was 35-6, which means that he got rid of them in season 1-2. If he got rid of the letters (which reminded him that somebody actually cared about him) when he finally developed actual friendship with other people, that's Fridge Brilliance. Of course, I don't recall the line, so this could be Epileptic Trees.

    Doctor Who 

  • How come Abed has worn a T-shirt referencing Doctor Who at least once (for example, the pre-titles scene in Basic Human Anatomy) when the British time-travel show from the 1960's in the Community-verse is Inspector Spacetime?
    • According to Word of God, Doctor Who also exists in the Community universe (and, somewhat cheekily, is apparently ripped-off from Inspector Spacetime). In any case, even if they hadn't said anything there's room for more than one British 1960s time travel show.


  • Why was Jeff upset about Abed using his Netflix account? It's not like it costs him anything extra, and I really doubt Jeff has any ethical reservations about ripping off a streaming site. So what's the problem?
    • Because Abed's doing it without Jeff's permission, which is unreasonable and rude of him and would be reason enough by itself. However, it's also because of the following: Abed cracked Jeff's account password to do so, which violates Jeff's privacy and is a sneaky and underhanded thing to do; Abed (presumably) isn't giving Jeff any money towards paying for his use of the account, meaning that Abed is essentially sponging off Jeff; Abed frequently either gets judgemental about the stuff Jeff watches and/or deletes it without Jeff's permission because it doesn't meet Abed's standards, either of which is an incredibly obnoxious and high-handed thing to do to someone you're essentially leeching free stuff from; and Abed is completely and even arrogantly unapologetic about all of the above. Simply put, it's Jeff's account, he's the one paying for it, he can allow or disallow whoever he wants from accessing it, and if he doesn't want Abed to access it without his permission that should be the end of the matter. Abed isn't entitled to use Jeff's account; if he wants to watch stuff on Netflix that badly he can pay for his own account.

    Abed and the comic 

  • Abed's the son of a falafel store owner who is not inclined to indulge his son's pop culture habits, goes to a cheap and crummy community college, lives in a shoebox apartment that he shares with two other people, doesn't appear to have or be seeking much in the way of decent-paying work and (it's implied) doesn't have much money. How then, in "Geothermal Escapism", did he get a comic book worth $50,000 that he can use to stake the Floor is Lava game?
    • Presumably he was very lucky and something made the first issue of Space Clone rise massively in estimated value after he bought or otherwise acquired it.

    Social Psychology 

  • In Community S1 E04: Social Psychology, Abed sat in a chair for twenty-six hours. ...Food? Water? Bathroom?
    • That's only a day and a bit; he's hardly going to succumb to starvation or dehydration in that time. IIRC he has a bag with him, so he might have a bottle of water or some snacks with him. And even if he doesn't, it's not like he's in the middle of nowhere or anything; he can just go to the cafeteria down the corridor or to one of the vending machines when he leaves. As for the bathroom, he could just be very good at holding it in (and assuming he went before the experiment started and he didn't eat or drink during it, this would probably be even less of a problem). In short, he'd probably be a bit uncomfortable, but it's hardly beyond the limits of human endurance.
    • The experiment is to see how soon people throw tantrums and leave in disgust when kept waiting. They're not locked in — if they were it would defeat the whole purpose, since it would make it obvious something more serious was wrong with the situation. While leaving for half an hour to go to lunch would be unlikely if the experiment was supposed to start "any minute," he could surely leave to go to the bathroom.
    • True, but it is heavily implied that Abed didn't move at all during the time of the experiment.
    • It would seem likely to me that the experiment would, if not prevent, then at least make it difficult for people to leave to go to the bathroom / get something to eat and then come back. If the purpose of the experiment is to see how long it takes people to explode while left to wait in a single room for a prolonged period of time, then letting people freely come and go (even just to use the bathroom or get a drink) is a good way of undermining it — by letting them come and go at will, you're removing a key source of stress. Someone who's getting annoyed could just go to the bathroom or get a glass of water, calm down, and then come back more relaxed. They're presumably not locked in, but someone leaving (even to go to the bathroom) would likely count as a 'break'/disqualification and they wouldn't be allowed back in.
    • It wouldn't be out of character for Abed to have trained himself to be able to sit comfortably for absurd lengths of time, just in case he'll need that particular skill someday.

    Rich's apartment 

    Prime burning pies 

  • In "Remedial Chaos Theory", during the prime timeline Shirley is about to retrieve her pies from the oven. But she's stopped and joins in with Britta's singing. Given how easily those pies evidently burn in the Shirley timeline, one has to wonder how long the group would dance before they smelled something burning.
    • Yeah, but this time, Shirley said nothing to the group about taking the pies out, and was present in the room, meaning that there's no one to blame but herself.
    • Actually a bit of Fridge Brilliance - Shirley feels like she is part of the group in that timeline and is having fun with her friends dancing and singing to Roxanne. It was established in the earlier timelines that Shirley is basically excessively baking because she didn't feel like she fit in with the group.
    • Also in that episode, Shirley complained about being the only married woman in the group. Does that mean she and Andre remarried over the summer?
    • She's previously said that "the Bible doesn't recognize divorce", so in her mind, they were married all along.
    • They officially remarried in "Urban Matrimony and the Sandwich Arts"; most likely, as the troper above suggests, either in Shirley's mind they were never really divorced or they'd rediscovered so much of their old dynamic that it was as if they'd never stopped being married, and she simply misspoke.

    Paying for the pizza 

  • In "Remedial Chaos Theory", how does Annie pay for the pizza if she left her purse behind?
    • Annie's definitely the type of person who would carry around some money separate from her purse in case she's separated from it and she needs some cash in a hurry (especially since the neighborhood she lives in is so bad she carries a gun around) — sort of like an emergency fund. She probably has a few bills tucked in her pocket (or elsewhere) and paid from that.
    • It's also possible to pay for a pizza (tip included) when ordering online.
    • This is certainly true, but the way Abed asks Jeff to give him the money for the pizza when it's the timeline where he goes for the pizza would seem to suggest that they didn't pay online.

    Singing in the blanket fort 

  • In "Regional Christmas Music", why do Abed and Troy go into their blanket fort bedroom to sing their song in front of an imaginary audience with imaginary back-up singers when there is a perfectly good Dreamatorium in the apartment for those exact moments?
    • I don't think Troy and Abed's over-active imaginations are bound by the need to be acted out solely in the Dreamatorium; they can probably lose themselves in fantasy anywhere. The blanket fort was just closer than the Dreamatorium (especially since Abed was explicitly trying to brainwash / convince Troy to the Glee club, and probably didn't want to risk losing him in the extra time it would take to get there). In any case, at the risk of overanalysing the Dreamatorium is a clear reference to the holodeck on Star Trek; perhaps they just go there when they're bored or want to have a specific fantasy / dream sequence.
    • It's stated that the Dreamatorium runs off of Abed's imagination - he "constructs imaginary dreamscapes" there. The rap was Troy's imaginary dreamscape, so they couldn't use the Dreamatorium.

    Course Listing Unavailable logic 

  • "Course Listing Unavailable" has some logic problems. For one, why would the teacher resigning force the study group (and presumably the whole class) to get an "Incomplete" for their grade and retake it in the summer? They were almost at risk for this in the first year with Chang, but even then they managed to bring in a replacement.
    • Also, you'd think the school board would be at least a little bit more forgiving of Pierce since he donated $100,000 to Greendale last year.
    • In the former question, it's possible that unlike the earlier example a suitable replacement could not be found in time to salvage the class. Alternatively / in addition, given that Greendale is hardly an example of the most efficiently-run of higher education facilities, it could be something to do with how the school is administrated in this regard; all the study group were quick to blame the Dean for this as if this was his fault. In the latter case, the board have clearly been swayed by Chang to not trust the study group an inch, not to mention that — $100,000 donation to the school earlier aside — they did incite what looked like a pretty destructive riot and caused a prominent (and no doubt profitable) commercial deal the school had to be threatened.
    • Actually, this is Fridge Brilliance. It's established in Biology 101 that as a result of the Air Conditioning Repair School Annex's new policies, the school has almost no money for this year. Whereas during Season 1, they had the funds to bring in a teacher at the last minute, they just don't have those kinds of emergency funds available anymore - they've been used to keep the school open. This also explains why the school reacts so much more harshly to the riot than to their previous destructive escapades - Greendale doesn't have the money to clean up after their shenanigans this season, and they put Greendale's relationship with Subway at risk when they might have been looking to the corporation to bail them out.

    Season 3 Biology 

  • Didn't Troy and Abed already take Biology in season 1? Why did they take it again in season 3?
    • Some science classes are bundled in twos; you have a lecture portion and a lab portion. Chemistry and life sciences are most common for this. It's atypical to take them separately(many colleges just won't let you), but since Troy and Abed are only seen doing the lab projects it's probably possible to take lectures and labs independently.
    • It was never mentioned that they passed Biology. Abed would probably retake it anyway for the sake of the group dynamic. Troy would probably have forgotten that he took it.

    Jeff and Shirley's case 

  • In the Season 3 Finale, Jeff treats the mock trial as a big dilemma between helping his friend or choosing his job. But then you remember that he's trying to help Shirley claim the simple title of ownership, as it's doubtful that even Pierce would kick Shirley out of the business completely. This is rather trivial compared to Jeff losing the chance to work at his past law firm, probably one of the few places left that would accept him given his past (faking his credentials, going to a bad community college to get his bachelor's).
    • It's the principle of the thing; yes, it's a fairly small deal in the scheme of things, but his choices are to either screw a friend over for his own benefit or stand by that friend at personal cost to himself. We can also look at it with regards to how Jeff has come not just as a person but as a lawyer; an Amoral Attorney like Jeff previously was wouldn't hesitate to put himself above his client's best interests, whereas Jeff — who is clearly becoming a better lawyer as well as a better person — chooses to put his client first and represent their interests to the best of his abilities at personal cost. Also, while it might be a small deal legally, it's a big deal to Shirley — this is representative of her lifelong dream to own a business of her own rather than just work for someone else's interests (as she's done throughout her whole life). Plus, given how spiteful Pierce can get and given how the study group are, in Troy's absence, clearly beginning to fray at the edges somewhat, there's no guarantee that Pierce wouldn't kick her out of the business if he got his way out of sheer mean-spiritedness.
    • Alternatively, he could be doing it not to win over the "judge" and jury (after all, the Dean would probably have rigged things in his favor anyways), but to win over Pierce to not be an asshole (at which he succeeds).

    Shooting the stormtrooper 

  • In For A Few Paintballs More, Pierce fakes a heart attack to steal the stormtrooper's weapon. Presumably that means he shot the stormtrooper ... meaning the uniform would have paint on it and he would have been disqualified.
    • The 'uniform' is basically black combat gear over a white shirt; since Pierce is also wearing a white shirt, he could simply have shot the guy on his shirt and left the actual armour itself untouched. Or he could have grabbed the gun, made the guy take his armour off, then shot him. Or shot the guy in the helmet and then found a clean helmet that someone (such as a previously disgruntled contestant who stormed off after being removed from the game) had discarded; it wouldn't be beyond Pierce to cheat in such a fashion, and it's not like anyone could prove it.
    • There's no reason Pierce couldn't have cleaned the uniform. You're disqualified if you get paint on yourself or your clothes. There are no rules that say you can't clean paint off of someone else's clothes after they've been disqualified. It won't bring them back but it could be useful as a disguise. And Pierce, naturally, is the most likely character on the show to carry around a packet of cleaning supplies, given that his name's on the package. So, shoot the guy, steal his armor, clean off the paint, put it on.
    • There's a way simpler explanation than Pierce ever having to clean the uniform: He fakes a heart attack and steals the guard's gun (exactly like he did to the Black Rider) then holds him and gunpoint and makes him strip, shooting him when he's done. Pierce now has a spotless uniform.


  • Assuming that Chang's assertion that all Chang babies are born with tails is a fabrication, we don't actually know for certain that Ben is Andre's. It's not unusual for biracial children to completely resemble only one of their parents, so really, only a DNA test could tell for certain.
    • How do we know it is a fabrication? This is Chang we're talking about here, and he arguably doesn't have any reason to lie about that.
    • Doesn't matter if it is a lie or not, it is likely an exaggeration based on possible genetics. If it is a recessive trait, it is unlikely Shirley has a tail gene. If it is dominant, there is a possibility Chang is heterozygous, and could still have a tailless baby.
    • Shirley and Andre probably don't want to know for certain. Shirley's had to put up with Chang creeping around her being a creepy creep almost all year over the prospect of him being the father. Chang, for whatever reason (even if it's just in his own demented head) has decided that the lack of a tail = not his kid. Since this means he's finally decided to give up on asserting his fatherhood claim, Shirley certainly doesn't want to kick a gift horse in the mouth by giving Chang any reason to start up again by confirming that he is the father of her child, which she would be doing if she performed a DNA test and it turned out Chang was the father. So she and Andre have probably just decided to wipe the slate clean, accept any reason (no matter how lame) to get Chang to shut up and go away, assume Andre's the father, not raise any more potentially awkward questions and forget all about it as quickly as possible.

    Deviant sex act 

  • How can they tell what "deviant sex act" Britta and Subway did just from the audio?
    • From Britta and Subway vocally communicating precisely what they would like the other person to do and where precisely they would like certain things to be ... inserted.
    • "Digital Exploration of Interior Design" seems to be the intended joke, but that's not exactly an unusual act.
    • Consider the source of the objection, though. He's clearly quite repressed.

    Colorado and Kroger 

  • The show is set in Colorado. At one point, you see a YouTube-type video from Leonard, a frozen pizza review. He states that he got the pizza from Kroger. But Kroger does business in Colorado under the name King Soopers.
    • Probably just bad research, like when the TV Show Martin had an episode where the title character goes to the DMV, but the show is set in Detroit, which doesn't have a DMV. It's an external mistake.

    Shirley in Abed's speech 

  • In "Ladders", Abed wrote a speech for the Dean to read as a way to inform the viewers about what happened to the remaining members of the study group since the end of the season 5. The problem is that Abed wrote the speech before he learned that Shirley had left, and yet the speech didn't mention her at all.
    • Since the speech was delivered after Shirley had left, presumably the material pertaining to her was simply removed.

    Theoretical Phys-Ed 

  • What on Earth could this course be about?
    • Well, the simple answer of course is that it's just a goofy play on "theoretical physics" and you're not supposed to think about it too much beyond the few seconds it takes you to have a quick chuckle, much less consider it a headscratcher (i.e. it's just a joke, [[MST3K Mantra relax and don't overthink it). But that said, there's actually quite a lot of science behind physical education (how much exertion the human body can withstand before it collapses, how much energy it takes to burn off a kilojoule of fat, etc.), so assuming it's not just a classic Greendale dodge class designed to waste time and churn out degrees, it could be exploring currently theoretical new methods of exercise.

     The Brick in Remedial Chaos Theory 
  • Annie brings the brick up when she and Britta arrive. Troy takes the brick back when he goes to let Jeff and Pierce in. There's no mention of someone else removing the brick, nor do any of the characters even wonder if this could have happened, and so, why didn't the pizza deliverer simply come straight up?

     Shirly voted for Obama? 
  • In the season 4 episode that shows flashbacks to how each of the study group members decided to enroll at Greendale, Shirly is seen enthusiastically wearing an Obama/Biden shirt. Race notwithstanding, wouldn't it make more sense for Shirley to be a Republican, given how her whole character practically revolves around how religious and socially conservative she is?
    • A lot of African-Americans voted for Obama for perhaps obvious symbolic reasons; Obama earned 95% of the African-American vote in 2008 and 93% in 2012. While a significantly lower amount, he also won 20% of voters who identified themselves as politically conservative in 2008 and 17% in 2012. If we were to draw a venn diagram, there's a sufficient overlap between those categories to explain Shirley voting for Obama. Plus, the Republican Party has been shedding the African-American vote since the 1960s and the "Southern Strategy" gained prominence, to the point where even many otherwise socially and politically conservative African-Americans express reluctance for voting Republican (though not all, obviously).


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: