What does it mean to call an episode of Community weird? A show that spent significant time talking about an existential emergency diarrhea incident on the set of Cougar Town has set the bar pretty high on weird. And yet, for an episode of Community, last night’s episode, “Competitive Ecology,” was odd — not because of Chang’s film noir send-up story line, or because the study group spent yet another episode meta-navel-gazing at their own group dynamics, or because it wasn’t funny, but because the whole thing didn’t really come together. It was weird, because for a Community episode, it was sort of a whiff. (Others disagree. Perhaps you do too?)
After this all-night spite fest, the gang heads off to bio class — Hi, Magnitude! — everyone but Annie not having done the assignment. Their punishment? Dr. King makes them one lab group, with one grade. Annie falls off her chair, but at least they won’t have to talk to anyone else for the rest of the season. Dr. King tells them he recognizes their kind from prison: They’re the Mean Clique. They immediately prove him right. Having spent all night being horrible to each other and Todd, the group makes up over their one microscope by scapegoating him. Todd’s the reason they didn’t get along! Stupid Todd! With his big head! The episode ends with the camera on Todd, who can hear them because he’s sitting one stool away, shedding a tear, communicating to us that Community’s writers know the Community characters just acted like a bunch of jerks — but you still love them anyway, right? Fine. But it’s hard to like them very much right now.