Community recap: Basic Lupine Urology, aka the Law & Order episode

It’s Law & Order night, you guys, so let’s get right to those Lenny Briscoe (RIP) zingers, shall we? It’s all goofballs and eggheads up in here, and uh-oh—a yam’s been murdered.

Annnnd, there’s Professor Jailbird. Haven’t seen him in awhile, and you know what? I didn’t miss him. He hearkens back to those dark days way at the beginning of the semester when (gasp!), Community wasn’t very good. It was only a couple of episodes, but they were mean episodes. I shall keep an open mind, though. Especially since CLEARLY the study group has been sabotaged and they need my support now. Their yam was on track to earning the group an A, but with their specimen obliterated, the best they can hope for is a C. Annie didn’t go to Adderall rehab to come back and earn a stinking C, so they’ll just have to find out who pushed their damn yam.


Abed and Troy are on the case. Illegal old-guy poker in the cafetorium! Pierce was supposed to water the yam, but he fell asleep in a sunbeam. He doesn’t know why they’re bothering to question him anyway—it was his yam, too. Clearly the perpetrator is Todd. (Oh. No. See my previous graf re: fear of reprising the bad old days, but again, open mind.)

There’s big-headed Iraqi war vet Todd in all his big-headed glory. If anyone has an ax to grind with the study group, it’s Todd, but in addition to an ax he has an alibi. He was home by 9:15, helped his kid with geography, then bed. Only, there’s a suspicious bandage on his hand. From a home-ec muffin burn? Likely story. (Also, tangent: Where I grew up, people made more reservations than home-cooked meals, and in our 7th-grade home-ec class, we learned to make blueberry muffins—from a box. That’s weird, right? You should at least learn to make muffins from scratch if you’re going to bother learning to make muffins, shouldn’t you?) But Todd (poor Todd) isn’t the culprit: He went to the lab to take a picture of his yam, and the door was locked. He had to take a picture through the door, and in the photo, the gang’s yam is perfectly intact.


Britta in geeky glasses at a computer! (She’s totes either the hot Asian dude who runs all the high-tech phone taps on SVU or the dusky lab nerd who I sometimes see at Trader Joe’s right now. I tried to find a picture of him, but you have no idea how many results come up when you Google Law & Order + extras + Brooklyn.) Anyway, her enhanced-imagery work reveals a clock on the wall: 8:05. The classroom is locked at 8, which means the perp either hid out in the classroom for hours or, y’know, had a key. Know who can help? Less svelte Neil (who apparently works in the office that keeps the key log), that’s who. And who signed out the key on the night in question? Magnitude.

Pop pop!

Only, turns out someone stole the key out of Magnitude’s backpack in the library. But who? Sting time!

It’s Starburns who’s stealing keys!!! Our lovable druggie is the only one who realizes that, y’know, Abed and Troy aren’t actual cops, ergo, he’s a flight risk. S. Epatha Shirleyson will try to stall him while Trabed hit the lab to find out the cause of yam death.

Chong dun pop!

It’s the real Law & Order ME lady, probably saying “schmushing” for the first time in her acting career. Squeeeeee! Anyway, yes, Pam the Yam was brutally murdered, no doubt about it. This was no accident.

Time to find something to pin on Starburns so he’ll confess. To the lockers! Cleanup on aisle busted. Why do they always….run? Quendra! Ok, ok, Starburns swiped some beakers for the meth lab he’s building in the trunk of his car. He didn’t kill the yam—but he knows who did. If he gets immunity for all the meth stuff, he’ll squeal. Hesitant pinkie swear and…yes…it was the army guy. Todd???

The biology class shall come to order! It’s Annie and Jeff for the prosecution and…oh, here’s Col. Archwood, (a.k.a. Uncle Nobby) for the defense. He commanded Todd in Iraq and commands his couch currently. (Who is that guy? He’s familiar. He plays bad guys a lot, I think.) There’s no compelling proof that Todd’s the culprit, and without knowing what Starburns was doing in the lab, it’s hard to believe he’s not the guilty one. But a pinkie swear is no joke, and the prof will not overturn it. It’s up to the class to rule. Awesome.

But Starburns is in the wind. Archwood got to him. Damn you, familiar evil guy! (Hee, good cop–bad cop switcheroo.) The gang has no case, but it’s trial time.

Fat Neil, Vicki, a guy doing courtroom notebook sketches with a Bic, they’re all there to see decorated war hero Todd in half his military glory (business on the top, party on the bottom), trying to clear his good name against the accusations of the (alleged!) Holocaust-denying, 9/11 pedophile Starface. (In an episode filled with clever moments, “9/11 pedophile” stands out as maybe the cleverest.)

Oh, guess what, Todd did it. Accidentally, but still. And yet, again, poor Todd. Crying. (This time it’s funny, at least.) Except….his story doesn’t make sense. He says he burned his hand on the jar and dropped it. Burned it how? Another switcheroo (hard-ass Machiavellian Annie vs. kind-hearted typical-end-of-episode Winger) and the gang rejects its likely A in favor of a mistrial: What if the yam was already dead when Todd dropped it. But who would kill the yam? And why? And what?! Smash, smash, smash, Jeff’s smashing all the yams—but they’re kind of splooshing on the floor instead of bouncing the way a yam should. Why are they doing that? Well, for the same reason the jar burned Todd’s hand: Someone’s been pouring boiling water on the yams every night. Ohhh…but one yam did not sploosh. It did not sploosh!!! Just whose yam was that, anyway??? Whoever has the nonsplooshy yam is clearly our culprit.

It’s Vicki’s!!! Only, SHE didn’t do it either. (Oh BROTHER.) It was kind of husky Neil. Vicki’s yam never sprouted and he didn’t want her to fail. Aww. If she has to go to summer school, they’ll never get to have sex at his parents’ cabin. Case closed! See? It really was a biology lesson! Hurrah! Celebratory glass of something brownish!

And…ring ring! Starburns got rear-ended and his meth lab exploded. He’s dead. WHAT?! (This is the much-talked-about death this season, I guess. Never saw it coming. Farewell, Starface. And just when the prof had finally learned your name, too.) Oddly dark and weird ending—but very L&O!!! Almost as startling as when ADA Serena Southerlyn was suddenly like, “Is this because I’m a lesbian?” and everyone was like, “Whaaaaa? How could it be because you’re a lesbian when NONE OF US KNEW YOU WERE A LESBIAN, mostly because the writers decided you’re a lesbian RIGHT THIS MINUTE.)

Troy and Abed in bunk beds in the study lounge! (Sing that to the tune of “Troy and Abed in the Morning,” but in the dean’s weird voice. Thank you.) So much fun! I’m off to Google the nerdy, dusky Law & Order guy from Trader Joe’s with that search term exactly. Wish me luck.

You can check out the full episode below!

Carla Sosenko

Carla Sosenko is a writer and editor from Brooklyn, N.Y. Her work has appeared in Marie Claire, Self, Jezebel, The Hairpin, The NY International Fringe Festival and some other places. She received her MFA in creative writing from Emerson College, where she majored in choppy sentences. Carla thanks you for reading her words and kindly asks you to read more of them at Follow her @carlasosenko. She thinks you rule.

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