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Ranking: Community’s Musical Moments from Worst to Best

A musical refresher before Season 6 drops.

Community (NBC)
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    Community has always been streets ahead of the competition as a sitcom for pop culture mavens. There’s been plenty to enjoy for music lovers, too. In its first five seasons, the embattled show boasted cameos from Ben Folds, Sara Bareilles, and Sophie B. Hawkins, a co-writing spot from Adam Levine, and a huge group of great sampled and original tracks, including an entire episode dedicated to spoofing Glee. This list takes a broad interpretation of what constitutes musical moments, so you’ll see clips ranging from Britta’s pizza dance in “Remedial Chaos Theory” to Ludwig Göransson’s compositions and songs performed by cast members.

    In anticipation of Season 6 making the move to Yahoo TV, let’s revisit these 100 classic scenes. There are hilarious lyrics. There are heartfelt moments. There are downright bizarre non-sequiturs. It may be hard to stop listening.

    However, I wish you luck!

    –Killian Young
    Staff Writer

    100. “Green Daeye”

    (“Environmental Science” S1E10)

    The Dean’s ace in the hole to get attendees for the Green Week dance at Envirodale Greendale.

    99. “You Made Me Like It”

    (“Pilot” S1E01)

    Another establishing moment in the relationship when Jeff tries to hit on Britta in the cafeteria.

    SP_The_triangle

    98. “You Get What You Give”

    (“Advanced Documentary Filmmaking” S4E06)

    Chang changes Jeff’s opinion that Changnesia is real as the two seem to turn over a new leaf.

    4X6_The_start_of_a_beautiful_friendship

    97. “Night Cap”

    (“Interpretive Dance” S1E14)

    An ode to the most fashionable headwear for sleeping.

    96. “Party Where Your Heart Is”

    (“The Art of Discourse” S1E22)

    This song soundtracks another of Abed’s quintessential college experiences: a cafeteria food fight.

    95. “Please Do Not Go”

    (“Football, Feminism and You” S1E06)

    Jeff and Annie reconcile their differences to support Troy as this Violent Femmes track plays.

    94. “Heatstroke”

    (“Early 21st Century Romanticism” S2E15)

    This Magic Bullets track plays when Annie cheers up (and goes to kiss) Britta after Page ditches her.

    93. “One Time Lover”

    (“Early 21st Century Romanticism” S2E15)

    The pretty librarian truly does turn out to be a one-time lover after she chooses Troy over Abed at the Valentine’s Day dance (mostly because Troy walks out on her to hang out with Abed).

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    92. “Fancy Footwork”

    (“Early 21st Century Romanticism” S2E15)

    Chromeo soundtracks the moment in the Valentine’s Day dance where Britta and Page discover that neither of them is actually lesbian.

    91. “More Than This”

    (“Analysis of Cork-Based Networking” S5E06)

    Annie gets in way too deep with the underground politics of Greendale and contemplates at what cost the cafeteria can get its cork board.

    More_Than_This

    90. “Baby Fratelli”

    (“Anthropology 101” S2E01)

    The montage music for the study group members getting ready for year two at Greendale.

    A101_First_day_back

    89. “Good Ol’ Fashion Nightmare”

    (“Spanish 101” S1E02)

    After making amends with Pierce over their Spanish project snafu, Jeff scores some brownie points with Britta for doing the right thing.
    http://media.giphy.com/media/Tt2QMYWIsXd3G/giphy.gif

    88. “Daylight”

    (“Pilot” S1E01)

    Jeff realizes that Professor Duncan offering crib sheets for Spanish exams was a ploy to get the jaded lawyer to — gasp — actually learn something. And so the study group is officially born.

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    87. “When I Say Thera, You Say Pist”

    (“Cooperative Escapism in Familial Relations” S4E05)

    Now we know where the theme music for Brooklyn Nine-Nine came from.

    86. “Don’t You (Forget About Me)”

    (“Pilot” S1E01)

    The pilot was dedicated in John Hughes’ memory. This version is a cover by the 88, who also perform the Community theme.

    85. “How You Like Me Now”

    (“Social Psychology” S1E04)

    Pierce’s ear-noculars clue him into all the hot gossip about him.

    Ear-Nocular3

    84. “Whistle for the Choir”

    (“The Politics of Human Sexuality” S1E11)

    Jeff takes a step toward becoming less shallow by changing Britta’s name in his phone.

    Whistle_For_the_Chior

    83. “Creep”

    (“Basic Intergluteal Numismatics” S5E03)

    For some reason, Shirley’s sons sing this song while the Ass Crack Bandit runs amok.

    Creep

    82. “Chang Leaves Pierce”

    (“Origins of Vampire Mythology” S3E15)

    Who would’ve thought that the two most volatile characters going on a man-date would end in heartbreak?

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    81. “Love So Alike”

    (“Aerodynamics of Gender” S2E07)

    Jeff and Troy discover a new sanctuary on campus, which may or may not be run by a Nazi.


    80. “Dungeons & Dragons Sex Scene”

    (“Advanced Dungeons & Dragons” S2E14)

    It’s a classic comedy trope — gesticulating some super explicit sex acts while innocuous music plays — but Alison Brie makes it work.

    79. “We Are Not Alone”

    (“Communication Studies” S1E16)

    Community pays homage to The Breakfast Club’s dancing-in-the-library scene.

    78. “Werewolves of London”

    (“Physical Education” S1E17)

    A hat tip to Tom Cruise in The Color of Money.

    77. “Evil Woman”

    (“Debate 109” S1E09)

    Jeff’s singing of the ELO song doesn’t charm his way to bonus points with the judges. It’s a debate, not American Idol.

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    Debate_109_Evil_Woman (1)

    76. “Hit Me with Your Best Shot”

    (“Modern Warfare” S1E23)

    The original glee club members were sirens of the battlefield in “Modern Warfare”, luring unsuspecting victims into the line of fire with their sweet renditions of classic songs.

    75. “Annie’s Song”

    (“Romantic Expressionism” S1E15)

    Hey! Hi! What’s up? Vaughn’s always had a way with words.

    74. “Open the Door”

    (“Basic Sandwich” S5E13)

    Perfectly timed to the opening of the secret door.

    73. “The Real World Audition”

    (“Intro to Political Science” S2E17)

    Sweet leather jacket, Jeff.

    72. “Original Greendale Ad”

    (“Documentary Filmmaking: Redux” S3E08)

    Go Greendale, go Greendale go!

    71. “La Cucaracha”

    (“Introduction to Statistics” S1E07)

    Everybody’s favorite neighborhood drug dealer, Starburns, hooks Pierce up with some pills, causing him to have a terrifying trip where he hallucinates skeletons singing “You’re an old man” to the tune of “La Cucaracha”.


    70. “Fat Dog”

    (“Analysis of Cork-Based Networking” S5E06)

    IT’S A BEAR DANCE!

    69. “Linger”

    (“Anthropology 101” S2E01)

    Abed ups the ante in Britta and Jeff’s sympathy war by having Jeff propose.

    68. “Running Through Raining”

    (“Asian Population Studies” S2E12)

    In a nice little sleight of hand, Jeff dramatically runs through the rain to proclaim his love for … Rich.

    67. “Ave Maria”

    (“Course Listing Unavailable” S3E18)

    Garrett honors Starburns’ memory with his beautiful singing voice.

    66. “Alison’s Rap” (outtake)

    (Season 3 outtakes)

    Yvette Nicole Brown is digging Alison Brie’s freestyle.

    65. “Abed’s Happy Community College Show”

    (“History 101” S4E01)

    Community takes a swipe at rote sitcoms when Abed struggles with the fact that change is upon the study group with graduation on the horizon.

    64. “Home”

    (“Debate 109” S1E09)

    He was horny, so he dropped him. Man is evil!

    63. “As I Lay Me Down” and “Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover”

    (“Herstory of Dance” S4E08)

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    Pierce saves the day by booking Sophie B. Hawkins for Britta’s dance and teaches Jeff a lesson along the way.

    Community - Season 4

    62. “Hard to Be Jewish”

    (“Competitive Wine Tasting” S2E20)

    Troy leads the production of Fiddler, Please!, the African-American take on Fiddler on the Roof.

    61. “Pierce Playing Keyboard”

    (“Home Economics” S1E08)

    Try not to laugh while watching Pierce’s facial expressions.


    60. “Jeff Winger — Hero at Law”

    (“Repilot” S5E01)

    In this Abed-directed clip, Jeff represents every questionable lawyer you see advertising with gimmicky imagery on subways and/or billboards.

    59. “Kiss with a Fist”

    (“Comparative Religion” S1E12)

    Community definitely takes some cues from John Hughes (see: Abed impersonating John Bender in the pilot, as well as the use of “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” and “We Are Not Alone”). Anthony Michael Hall is nearly unrecognizable when he plays the mustachioed bully Mike Chilada, whose posse the study group fights to this Florence and the Machine track.

    58. “O Christmas Troy”

    (“Comparative Religion” S1E12)

    From stuffing pencils in their mouths to trying to wear as many t-shirts as possible as well as this scene, Troy and Abed are always up to shenanigans in the credits.
    https://31.media.tumblr.com/1022c31f81ba8ae39a66b09e2de91404/tumblr_inline_mfjljq6RYc1rsjqu1.gif

    57. “That’s an Adventure”

    (“Intro to Felt Surrogacy” S4E09)

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    The group brainstorms trips to shake them out of the monotony of a routine. Along the way, they meet — and lose — their balloon guide (played by Sara Bareilles in a nice hat tip to sampling “Gravity”).

    56. “My Most Terrible Secret”

    (“Intro to Felt Surrogacy” S4E09)

    In another instance of a major music star lending support to the show, Adam Levine co-wrote this sad song.

    55. “Keytar Solo”

    (“The First Chang Dynasty” S3E21)

    Chang’s megalomania drastically increases once he’s in control of Greendale following his imprisonment of Dean Pelton. Dressed as Napoleon and protected by the Changlourious Basterds (his secret police of prepubescent “interns”), Chang performs an outlandish keytar solo dedicated to his twin sister Connie, who he claims he consumed in utero. Fun fact: Ken Jeong’s daughters are twins.

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    54. “Riverside High School Fight Song”

    (“Football, Feminism and You” S1E06)

    This fight song is GOP-approved.

    53. “If I Die Before You”

    (“Communication Studies” S1E16)

    Another sweet composition from Ludwig Göransson soundtracks Britta helping Jeff to save his relationship with Slater and escape his incriminating drunk-dial voicemail.

    52. “Come, Take a Trip in My Airship”

    (“The Art of Discourse” S1E22)

    It’s hard to imagine that Pierce is a hardcore Francophile, but alas here he is strumming away at the acoustic guitar while wearing a beret. At least until Abed smashes his instrument to smithereens à la John Belushi in Animal House.

    51. “Merry Happy”

    (“Interpretive Dance” S1E14)

    Once the theater clears out, it becomes clear that not only Britta and Troy have dance skills.


    50. “High as Hell”

    (Multiple Episodes)

    This brief rap snippet — “I’m as high as hell/ And you’re about to get shot!” — is the very first sound of the pilot. It also becomes the ending song for Leonard’s incredible YouTube video reviews of Eugenio’s frozen pizza and Let’s chips.

    49. “Flower Duet”

    (“Accounting for Lawyers” S2E02)

    Chang dreams of being in the study group despite being abandoned for the majority of Pop and Locktoberfest.

    48. “Ants Marching”

    (Multiple Episodes)

    “Ants Marching” by Dave Matthews Band (real fans call him Dave) appears multiple times throughout the show, usually in celebratory moments like when Greendale escapes a buyout from Subway.

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    47. “Elton Lil Jon Lennon”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    The original glee club’s pop mashup before they get a cease-and-desist letter delivered by Chang.
    https://38.media.tumblr.com/1e559a962a4d8e53366d966b5b31a39b/tumblr_mwewz4yXhn1sd2uico5_500.gif

    46. “Reading Rainbow”

    (“Intermediate Documentary Filmmaking” S2E16)

    I just wanted a picture! You can’t disappoint a picture!

    45. “Come on I’m Dean”

    (“Course Listing Unavailable” S3E18)

    Dean Pelton can’t stop doing his job — it’s his i-dean-tity.

    44. “Ass Crack Bandit”

    (“Basic Intergluteal Numismatics” S5E03)

    In a brilliant parody of David Fincher’s grim style, “Basic Intergluteal Numismatics” introduced one of the greatest mysteries in Community lore: Who is the insidious Ass Crack Bandit? Ben Folds wrote and performed the song and had a cameo as the red herring botany professor. (Ruby Amanfu handles the backing vocals.) Fun fact: Childish Gambino name-drops Folds on “Sweatpants”.

    43. “Glee (Flashback)”

    (“Paradigms of Human Memory” S2E21)

    The study group will do whatever it takes to get to regionals.

    42. “Glee”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    Mr. Rad is just too gleeful to not be a psychopath.

    41. “Teach Me How to Understand Christmas”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    Annie turns on the sex appeal in a shameless attempt to lure Jeff to rejoin glee club. “Boopy doopy doop boop, sex!”

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    40. “Come Sail Away”

    (“Geothermal Escapism” S5E05)

    In Troy’s heartrending departure from the show, he follows the instructions of Pierce’s will to sail around the world on his boat (the aptly named Childish Tycoon) while Styx plays in the background.

    5x05-Britta_Annie_Troy_Jeff_Shirley_Abed_Childish_Tycoon

    39. “Going Crazy”

    (“Communication Studies” S1E16)

    Before El Tigre Chino humiliates Pierce and Troy by making them wear colorful pantsuits, he shows off his incredible moves at the Valentine’s Day dance.

    38. “Duncan’s Rap”

    (“Pascal’s Triangle Revisited” S1E25)

    Has anyone else noticed Professor Duncan hasn’t been around for a long time?

    37. “Yi Shui Ge”

    (“Modern Warfare” S1E23)

    In the action-packed first paintball episode (“Modern Warfare”, directed by Fast & Furious’ Justin Lin), Dean Pelton enlists Chang to win the game. With only Britta and Jeff remaining, Chang struts into the study room like a gangster straight out of Infernal Affairs while this traditional Chinese poem plays in the background.

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    36. “Krumping”

    (“Introduction to Film” S1E03)

    Bask in the glory days of Troy, Abed, and Jeff’s incredible dance moves.

    35. “Excel”

    (“Introduction to Teaching” S5E02)

    Wait, why is the dean wistfully gazing into the study room while his thoughts are narrated in a French song about Microsoft Excel?

    34. “Sensitive Night”

    (“Comparative Religion” S1E12)

    Let the soothing sounds of Shirley’s voice (and her nondenominational, PC message) discourage you from premarital sex, drug use, and other decidedly un-Christian activities.

    33. “Shake Your Money Maker”

    (“Contemporary American Poultry” S1E21)

    Like all great mob movies, “Contemporary American Poultry” features a montage showing the dirty side of business, set to Elmore James’ “Shake Your Money Maker”.

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    32. “Pizza Dance”

    (“Remedial Chaos Theory” S3E03)

    Britta’s goofy dance when the pizza arrives is the true embodiment of dignity.

    31. Other Songs from “Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas”

    (“Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas” S2E11)

    Leave it to the stop-motion episode to have things get real. Abed criticizes and eliminates various study group members from his imaginary world throughout the episode as he points out their flaws.


    30. “Carol of the Bells”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    Dean? Check. Chang? Check. Leonard making fart sounds? Check. Starburns? Check. It’s everything you could want in a Christmas tune.

    29. “Getting Rid of Britta”

    (“Home Economics” S1E08)

    Vaughn’s takedown of Britta is a little hamstrung by the clunky acronyms (and network TV limitations on swearing) meant to imply she’s a “goddamn bitch.”

    28. “Pierce, You’re a B”

    (“Home Economics” S1E08)

    Tiny nipples can’t hold him back — Vaughn comes at Pierce with a vengeance for leaving the band.

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    27. “Pierce’s Diss Track”

    (“Home Economics” S1E08)

    Sure, he may not have the flow or the creativity to come up with a rebuttal to “Pierce, You’re a B”, but Pierce certainly has the money to hire a rapper to defend his honor.

    26. “Best of the Best”

    (“The Psychology of Letting Go” S2E03)

    Playing people out seems to be a recurring theme in the Hawthorne family. In her final message to Pierce, his recently deceased mother debunks Reformed Neo Buddhism before exiting to this booming hip-hop track.

    25. “G.I. Jeff Intro”

    (“G.I. Jeff” S5E11)

    It’s pretty incredible that Community got G.I. Joe and Hasbro on board for the “G.I. Jeff” episode, which includes a nearly perfect, shot-for-shot parody of G.I. Joe’s original intro.

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    24. “Happy Birthday Jesus”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    No teaching religion in schools? Not in Shirley’s world. The devout Christian simply can’t resist the cherubic children’s choir beckoning her to rejoin the glee club.

    23. “Troy and Abed in the Morning”

    (Multiple Episodes)

    Whether it’s guest-starring Starburns and his turtle or Rich cooking up a fresh batch of kettle corn, Troy and Abed in the Morning always arrives with this signature jingle.

    22. “ABBA Medley” (“Dancing Queen”, “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!”, “Fernando”, “SOS”, “Waterloo”, “Mamma Mia”)

    (“Epidemiology” S2E06)

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    Between the dean’s voice memos and ABBA on loop, this was a Halloween to forget.

    21. “Planet Christmas”

    (“Regional Holiday Music” S3E10)

    Abed sabotages the glee club by encouraging Britta to sing her heart out. Me so Christmas! Me so merry!


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