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Recap / Community S1 E16: Communication Studies

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Jeff's love life is complicated when Britta drunk dials him. To reestablish the status quo Abed convinces Jeff he must leave an equally embarrassing phone call for Britta. After Troy and Pierce are humiliated by Chang, Annie and Shirley vow to get revenge, but the execution of their plan is less than ideal.

The Community episode "Communication Studies" provides examples of:

  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: Britta's drunk dial to Jeff at 3 in the morning. Then Jeff returns the favor with a 40 minutes call.
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  • Brick Joke: In the cold open, Abed emphasizes the importance of emphasis in successful sarcasm. At the end of the cold open, he goes to town on sarcasm to remind Jeff that he, in fact, knows something about television.
  • Cannot Convey Sarcasm: Subverted. Abed in his normal voice doesn't inflect much, but he is capable of being sarcastic, he just has to over-exaggerate.
    Abed: Oh that's sarcasm, but I forgot to inflect. This sounds WAY MORE like sarcasm. Inflection is SO interesting.
  • Cheating with the Milkman: Slater mentions her mother's affair with the pool cleaner who she was told to call "uncle".
  • Creator Breakdown: In-universe with the young Asian actor. Abed make a connection to Christian Bale's meltdown on the set of Terminator Salvation.
  • Crossdresser: Chang forces Troy and Pierce to wear attractive women's pant suits to a dance as punishment for trying to get revenge on him for humiliating them. It was Shirley and Annie.
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  • Disproportionate Retribution: All of what Chang does to Troy and Pierce. When the latter two send themselves valentines to save face, Chang humiliates them in front of the cast. And later, when he's almost pranked, he not only blames them and forces them to show up at the dance wearing dresses, he threatens to fail them if they don't.
  • Drunken Montage: Abed and Jeff (another scene lifted directly from The Breakfast Club).
  • Hangover Sensitivity: Britta, Jeff, and Abed.
  • Ho Yay: Troy calls Pierce a "slut!" for hopping on Chang's bike to go get some frozen yogurt.
    Pierce: I'm not gay, man; they close in 7 minutes.
    Troy: I could've driven you.
    Chang: You said he ''hated'' fro-yo.
    Pierce: Just drive. (They drive off)
    Troy: Slut!
  • Inspector Lestrade: Troy's deduction skills are an epic fail.
    "Yeah. It was written on fake Princeton letterhead. So whoever wrote it, worked at Princeton, ran out of stationary, and didn't have time to go to the store.
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  • Conspicuous Trenchcoat: Troy and Pierce use trench coats to cover their embarrassing pant suits.
  • I Think You Broke Him
    Abed: It's like... that movie... with that guy.... Kids in detention.
    Jeff: The Breakfast Club.
    Abed: Dear god. What have you done to me.
  • Karma Houdini: This episode is one of Chang's biggest Kick the Dog moments, and he receives absolutely no punishment for it.
  • Lady in Red: Britta. And she's seriously just doing it to mess with Jeff.
  • Never Live It Down: In-Universe. Britta implies that Jeff's drunk dial is forty minutes long and she intends to hold it over his head.
  • Playing Drunk: Jeff tries to do this to drunk-dial Britta. Abed insists he ACTUALLY gets drunk. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Playing Hard to Get: Jeff mentions this to be Britta's scheme.
  • Shout-Out:
  • A Simple Plan:
    Jeff: So, what, to even the score I have to drunk dial her? Isn't that absurdly simplistic? Would it even work?
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: Jeff and Britta have the same reaction to arming the Human Being with arrows.
    Oh, it has arrows now. That's safe.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Troy vehemently denies that his "girlfriend" is made up before Chang even questions it.
  • [Trope Name]: Jeff and Abed once stayed up all night drinking. The following morning, Abed is too hungover to think clearly and is unable to make the movie references he's known for. At one point, he responds to a comment from Jeff with simply "Movie reference."
  • Through His Stomach: Abed is on the receiving end of several muffin baskets from actresses who want to star in his next film.
  • Valentine's Day Episode: This episode plays on Valentines's Day.
  • What Did I Do Last Night?: Neither Britta nor Jeff can remember their calls last night.
  • Woman Scorned: Jeff calls his girlfriend and hangs up when he realizes she's not Britta. Anger ensues.


Example of: