Community Recap: Season 3 Episode 11

Tamar McCollom, Opinion Editor

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After an uncommonly long three and a half month Winter Break, everyone on Community is working hard to get back to normal.  The only catch is that normal at Greendale Community College is completely and totally weird.

Pierce is fired from Hawthorne Wipes in the wake of his father’s death, but he’s not resting on his laurels or the wads of cash that he can’t keep from falling out of his jacket pocket. He’s invented two new classically Pierce products to put him back on the map: a racial profiling security radar that rates Abed a “stage four” and a trouser bench that is as strange and problematic as it sounds. But after the coffee shop in the cafeteria closes, Pierce put aside those visionary pursuits to partner up with Shirley, the entrepreneurial culinary genius of the group, in order to start a sandwich shop.

All signs are go until Andre re-proposes to Shirley, landing her with a wedding to plan and a family to tend to again. Shirley is ready to table the new business venture until Britta convinces her to ignore “antiquated gender roles” and juggle being a mother and a businesswoman. Of course, Britta only convinces Shirley on the condition that she plans the wedding with the help of the always overeager Annie, who true to form already has a gargantuan lace-covered wedding scrapbook full of ideas.

Surprisingly, the “pro-anti” Britta who doesn’t even believe in marriage doesn’t completely “Britta” the situation. She discovers that she has a knack for wedding planning after she designs a beautiful bouquet. And let’s just say that Britta isn’t too excited about her strength in a stereotypically female role.  She’s deathly afraid that her female aptitude is going to inevitably make her a, dare I say it, wife.

Meanwhile, Jeff is in charge of writing a toast, which considering the fact that he’s Jeff Winger, cynic extraordinaire with commitment issues, is a daunting task. An even more daunting task, however? Troy and Abed’s pledge to renounce their weirdness for Shirley’s wedding. They want to             wear grey suits with grey ties, and join the ranks of normal (and utterly less awesome) society. As they put it in their typical sing-songy fashion, “Troy and Abed being normal.” Of course, their plan to get the weirdness out of their system is a “24-hour weirddown in the dreamatorium.” Cool cool cool.

The day of the wedding rehearsal arrives with Annie chipper as ever, Troy and Abed in their normal grey suits, Jeff drunk and without a speech, and Britta drunk and unable to stop speaking.  Britta’s upset that she’s planned a gorgeous rehearsal dinner in the library study room… no less.  She won’t stop moaning that, “Marriage is inevitable” and that “I’m one of the Steppenwolf wives.”

But where is the blushing bride? She’s two hours late for her own rehearsal dinner because of a meeting with (Oscar winner and Angie Leg impersonator) Dean Pelton about her sandwich shop.

And the groom isn’t happy. Andre expected that their remarriage meant that they would “go back to normal,” meaning that Shirley would stay at home so he can run his stereo shop. But Greendale, the best community college in the world, has empowered Shirley, and she’s not having it. Shirley snaps that, “Normal went out the door the day you did.” And the two storm off the alter… and into the library.

In their absence, Jeff drunkenly warbles off the cuff about his own father leaving even though he promised forever, but Britta protests that she’s born to be a normal wife and thus it has to be forever. Jeff and Britta drunkenly begin reciting cynical marriage vows in a delusional attempt to marry each other. I would repeat the vows here, but I might have just vomited in my mouth. As Shirley wisely put it: “Damn fools.”

DAN HARMON, LISTEN TO ME AND TO THE MILLIONS OF GIFS ON THE INTERNET. STOP TRYING TO MAKE JEFF AND BRITTA HAPPEN. JEFF AND BRITTA ARE NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN. IT’S JEFF AND ANNIE! JEFF AND ANNIE, I TELL YOU. DO YOU REMEMBER THE DEBATE EPISODE OR THE TIMELINE EPISODE OR ANY OF THE OTHER EPISODES THAT YOU HAVE AIRED IN, I DON’T KNOW, THE LAST THREE YEARS? MARK MY WORDS: JEFF AND ANNIE.

The only good news is that Jeff and Britta’s general grossness makes Andre and Shirley realize that they are perfect for each other. Andre agrees that “normal” hasn’t been working and lets Shirley have a career. They then get married on the spot to save $70.

Troy and Abed, the overcommitters that they are, are the last to give up the “normal charade.” But after a sighting of Annie’s Boobs, the monkey obviously, Troy decides that normal isn’t their style. As he pleads to Abed, the best performer of them all, “We’re weird. We need to be weird.”

And perhaps no wiser words have ever been spoken of Community. Community is weird, and it needs to be weird. It may have a monkey named Annie’s Boobs, and a dreamatorium, and a character with the name of a water filter, but it’s the best show on network television. There might not be millions of people eager to watch the best sitcom in years (likely because of said monkey, said dreamatorium, and said water filter name), but those of us that are addicted are a strong, persistent, and weird bunch ourselves, and we can’t handle another indefinite hiatus. Community is streets ahead, and tonight’s episode continues to prove just that.

Color me lavender.

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