Community: Season 1, Episode 4

Social Psychology (8 Oct. 2009)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Comedy
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 1,193 users  
Reviews: 1 user | 4 critic

Jeff and Shirley bond by making fun of Britta's new hippie boyfriend, which doesn't go well for any involved. Meanwhile, Troy and Abed become pawns in Annie's psychology experiment.



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Title: Social Psychology (08 Oct 2009)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Erik Charles Nielsen ...


Jeff and Shirley bond by gossiping about Britta's new boyfriend. When Jeff tries to stop and be a good friend to Britta, he discovers that gossip is a difficult monster to escape. Meanwhile, Annie joins Professor Duncan's psychology research team and recruits Troy and Abed as test subjects. Written by NBC Publicity

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8 October 2009 (USA)  »

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When Vaughn discovers the group has his poem, his arms go from right arm up to hands in pockets to left hand up between shots. See more »


Dr. Ian Duncan: The Duncan principle is simple. The longer the ego waits, the more ground is taken by the id, resulting in a predictable emotional eruption... better known to ma and pa as a good old-fashioned tantrum!
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User Reviews

In honor of "Community"- a review of every episode. (S1;E04- "Social Psychology")
12 May 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

(This is the fourth part in an ongoing series, in which I am writing brief reviews of each and every episode of Dan Harmon's beloved cult- comedy "Community.")

"Social Psychology" is a very good early episode of Dan Harmon's "Community", full of some genuine laughs, and a lot of great moments that start to chip away at the facade created by the character of Jeff Winger.

While Annie (Alison Brie) enlists Troy (Donald Glover) and Abed (Danny Pudi) to take part in a psychological experiment being run by Professor Duncan (John Oliver), Jeff (Joel McHale) begins to come to terms with his feelings for Britta (Gillian Jacobs) after discovering she is dating the hippie-ish Vaughn (Eric Christian Olsen). He also forges a very friendly connection with Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown), after discovering that they have fun gossiping together.

This is a really solid, fun episode. In big part because it is one of the episodes to really give the underrated character of Shirley something to do, and it allows her to really connect with another member in the study group in a way previous episodes hadn't quite done. It fleshes out her character, and thus, the "family" of the Study-Group as a whole. It's also a really fun episode of John Oliver, and it is probably his first really big "role" in an episode, despite having appeared before in the series.

But the beating heart of the episode is the almost "pseudo love- triangle" situation between Jeff, Britta and Vaughn. This is one of the episodes that really humanizes Jeff in a way that makes him all the more relatable and enjoyable as a character, and it's nice seeing Britta put into similarly humanizing circumstances. (Especially given the turns her character takes later in the series)

I also have to comment that the "B-Plot" involving Annie, Abed and Troy is an absolute blast. It's full of great jokes, some fun twists and turns, and supplies some of the best belly-laughs of the season.

While it's far from the best episode of the season, I do think this is a fantastic effort. And that's why I am giving "Social Psychology" a near-perfect 9 out of 10.

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