Community returns THIS THURSDAY, folks (watch the Epic trailer). In two days, we’ll finally see the Greendale gang again for the first time since last May. A lot has changed, obviously, with the departure of Dan Harmon, but what NBC can never take away is what the show has already given us: Three seasons of comedic genius. More than any other comedy since Arrested Development, Community has always been good at pop-culture riffing, inside jokes, and running gags, which is probably part of the reason why its ratings have been historically so low (but also, why it has such a adoring cult following).
Ahead of its return, I thought I’d catalogue 25 of my favorite facts, easter eggs, and running gags from the show. It’s not all-inclusive, because that WOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE, so do feel free to share your own favorites. Many of these you may know, some you may not, but it’s a great reminder of the cleverness jazzing through the veins of Greendale. Let’s just hope that with new showrunner, the show can continue to maintain its genius through this season and, hopefully, two more (and a movie).
1. I guess this is good news and bad news. May 23rd is a Thursday, and is likely the date of the season finale. But if Jeff graduates and becomes a lawyer, it would also mean potentially the end of the series (via Reddit, Hat Tip: Josh)
2. Thus far, the Daybreak theme has been hummed six times during the course of the series.
3. Perhaps the show’s best running gag was based on Beetlejuice. If you say his name three times, he appears. It took them three episodes over the course of three seasons, but he finally appeared. (via)
4. In the episode Applied Anthropology and Culinary Arts, we all know that in background scenes, Abed helped to deliver a baby. But, urban legend has it that, in the first season, we also find out how the woman got pregnant. Look closely in the background.
The pregnant woman, by the way, is Amber Lancaster, who plays Jenny Swanson in The Hard Times of RJ Berger.
5. Season three both began and ended with Chang in the air ducts.
6. On the website for Greendalte, Pierce’s favorite movie is listed as Fletch.
7. A reference to “Remedial Chaos Theory”: Is this a Great Tweet or the Greatest Tweet?
8. Remember in “Cooperative Calligraphy” when Annie’s Boobs stole the pen? You have to look VERY closely at the 2-second mark, but you can actually see the monkey steal it.
9. Abed appeared as an extra on Cougar Town (as he’d mentioned in Critical Film Studies) and Busy Phillips and Dan Bird repaid the favor, appearing on the second paintball episode of Community.