Community: The Weirdest Prankster Is Also Disturbing, & Likes Dave (Matthews Band)

Troy Barnes, wrapped in shock blankets and given empty cups after his experience with the Ass Crack Bandit. (Photo by: Charles Christopher/NBC)

Troy Barnes, wrapped in shock blankets and given empty cups after his experience with the Ass Crack Bandit. (Photo by: Charles Christopher/NBC)

“Basic Intergluteal Numismatics” is another themed episode of a David Fincher-esque, mystery/crime drama, this time following an unsolved case of the Ass Crack Bandit.

Profile:
Likes Dave Matthews Band
May or may not like change, specifically quarters
May or may not like butts

The episode called for the return of a beloved character, Professor Duncan. The man had been taking care of his sick mother. She’s not dying, but he already put in his time so he’s back to work! Duncan’s weird disgust and desire for Britta continues, hotter than ever now that she’s interested in psychology as well. Britta’s slightly incompetent knowledge of the subject is better explained through the incompetence of Duncan’s ability to profile the Ass Crack Bandit.

To catch the criminal, a dream team was formed. Already three episodes in, and season 5 is Jeff/Annie heavy. Even the Dean is uncomfortable by their creepy relationship.

Don’t get me wrong, Jeff/Annie are a sweet dynamic. But Community plays their relationship the same way over and over again. Jeff’s a mid-thirties man & Annie’s a early twenties young woman. Their first kiss was when she was 18 or 19 years old. Jeff’s role in Annie’s life has been a blend of Greendale dad, older brother advice, or puppy love with eyes catching from across the room. Should they be together or not? Is this inappropriate or not? Can they keep on doing this, kiddo?

Hopefully the show will move past this. The Jeff/Annie dynamic is good when used sparingly, and both characters have such fascinating, complex relationships with other members in the Study Group, it’d be a shame to waste more time on the Will They, Won’t They romance plot.

The ACB strikes whenever students are left vulnerable, i.e. bending over or not wearing belts. Poor Troy gets distracted by a soft teddy bear and becomes a ACB victim. He is traumatized and speaks about his experience to help prevent others from being targets. Shirley’s business thrives, since change is banned from campus and now customers must pay $5 a sandwich. Chang walks around the building backwards with a decoy butt.

Following one of the ACB’s run-on sentence riddles, Jeff, Annie, and Dean Pelton stumble into Greendale’s stables and find Starburns (or, as he likes to be called, “Alex”) attempting a chariot of feral cats and definitely NOT DEAD. Starburns confesses to being ACB, but Jeff later discovers he doesn’t like Dave (Matthews Band) and actually only confessed so the Dean would drop his meth charges.

The episode concludes with a montage of red herrings: Shirley, Britta, Duncan, or even Abed. The case is still unsolved but the school finds itself in mourning instead. Pierce Hawthorne, of Hawthorne Wipes, is dead. The news, even though it’s clear that Chevy Chase was gone for good, shakes the show’s foundations. Despite his magnitude of flaws and general unpleasantness, Pierce’s death pulls us & and the characters out of Greendale’s crazy scandal and into life. Sometimes there are no clear conclusions, no answers. Sometimes people are leave forever, even when you always thought they’d be there somewhere in the back of your mind. It’s a touching, quiet scene as the Study Group clings to each other for comfort, with Neil’s sweet eulogy voiceover paying tribute to the insensitive man who played Dungeons & Dragons.

Highlights:

  • Troy not wanting to eat salad. Troy in a wheelchair after being attacked. Troy’s face when he slaps Starburns after confessing to be the Ass Crack Bandit. You will be missed, Donald Glover.
  • The Dean already had a fake butt.
  • Where does Greendale get the money or property to have a stables??
  • If someone’s on the phone & they snap their fingers at you, TRACE THE CALL.
  • Shirley’s sons singing that creepy song from The Social Network trailer. That tells you how much I know about music but also how many times I watched The Social Network trailer.
Jennifer Babu

Jennifer Babu is the editor-in-chief of Videshi Magazine. She's a film & TV addict, and suffers from sleep deprivation (self-inflicted). Follow her on twitter @jenibabu.

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