Community is one of the most underrated shows of all time. Created by Dan Harmon of Rick & Morty, and produced by the Russo Brothers of the Marvel films, and featuring a kickass cast of actors. Community is set at a Greendale Community College and follows a study group as they make their way through the school years. If you ask me though, there are no bad episodes, but for the sake of making a list, I decided to rank the best Community episodes of all time!
Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas
Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas is the most meta Christmas episode of any show you will watch. Abed wakes up and realizes that everything he sees is in stop motion animation, so Professor Duncan and the rest of the study group try to help him discover the true meaning of Christmas. If you have not seen it, the first few scenes will lead you to believe it is just another stop motion Christmas special, but upon further viewing, you will understand why this episode is so great.
Basic Human Anatomy
Troy and Abed get a copy of Freaky Friday on DVD, which leads them to go through a generic dialogue about how they always wished they could switch bodies with the other person. Abed and Troy both grab the DVD, which makes them “switch bodies” with one another. While they both commit to being the other guy, none of the group plays along and instead seems more confused about it than anything. This episode makes the list because while there are wacky moments throughout, it ultimately concludes with Troy (who is supposed to Abed) says that Troy wants to break up with his girlfriend, proving how easily this show can catch you off guard. This one may not be on every person’s list, but it is definitely on my list!
Cooperative Calligraphy is the Community version of a bottle episode. Once the study group is leaving the study room, Annie freaks out because her pen is missing. She starts to accuse everyone in the group of taking the pen, and they all slowly descend into madness. The longer the pen is gone, each member of the study group grows less trusting of their fellow group members, and by the end, they have all gone absolutely mad. Another thing about why this episode is so good is because it shows how much the creators paid attention to small details. I will not tell you where, but if you watch the opening scene close enough, you will see who actually took the pen.
Digital Estate Planning
Anyone who is a fan of classic 2D scrollers will love the idea of this episode. An entire episode based inside of a personalized 2D video game made by Pierce’s father. The entire study group needs to work together and beat the game to get Pierce the rights to his inheritance. It might sound like the kind of episode which would get boring, but it turns out the video game is one of the most in-depth 2D scrollers ever made, with secrets at every corner. Also, each game character seems to have its own movements based on the character they portray. For example, Troy jumps the highest, which is a tongue-in-cheek racist joke which is to be expected from pierces father, who is practically the CEO of racism.
When Troy decides to leave Greendale, Abed decides to have a game of Hot Lava to celebrate. However, the prize for winning is a comic book, which is valued at $50,000. Within hours, the school has already broken out into a post-apocalyptic style wasteland, with people doing everything in their power to not touch the ground. The episode actually turns out to be one of the most touching episodes of Community ever made, with Troy ultimately leaving Greendale to sail the Childish Tycoon, a nod to the real reason Troy was leaving the show.
Paradigms of Human Memory
Yet another episode which is almost too meta, this episode serves as their version of a clip show. However, instead of a “greatest hits” set up, we see never before seen adventures the cast got into the off-camera. For any Rick and Morty fans, this is kind of like their version of Mortys Mind Blowers. Jeffs’s final montage of inspirational speeches is one of the funniest moments the Community writers ever gave to us, and even though the clips are seemingly random at first glance, they create a coherent linear storyline. This episode will make you realize that the study group supposedly does things outside of the show, and that is kind of a hard idea to grasp.
Remedial Chaos Theory
This is the absolute best episode of Community, and the birth of one of the greatest internet gifs of all time. Troy & Abed are having a housewarming party, and invite every person over for a game of Yahtzee. A pizza man knocks on the door, and they decide to roll a dice to decide which person has to go get it. Right before the roll, Abed tells Jeff that he is creating six different timelines by rolling the dice, but Jeff rolls it anyway. Throughout the rest of the episode, we see how each timeline plays out depending on which number comes up on the dice. Each roll takes a drastically different tone and seems to give you a new piece to the puzzle with every new timeline. The absolute kicker though is the timeline where Troy gets the pizza, which is still the greatest thing to ever happen on Community.
Community is a show which I would highly suggest to any person looking for a good comedy to binge-watch. 6 seasons (and hopefully a movie!) worth of episodes to watch, with very few bad episodes means that if you have not watched this show by now, then what are you doing? Did I forget any really good episodes of Community? If I did, make sure to let me know in the comments down below!
Senior at Central State University. Major in Broadcast Media!