Community: “Basic Intergluteal Numismatics” Review

By Chip Tamplin

Published on Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Full spoilers of this weeks episode follow.

After last weeks hysterical Nicolas Cage episode, it was hard to tell whether Community was going to ease their way into pure craziness or if they were going to dive right into it. Well, after watching “Basic Intergluteal Numismatics”, it’s pretty obvious that they decided to throw caution to the wind.

As the episode opens, Shirley is in the midst of re-opening Shirley’s Sandwich’s. While her two boys are singing an ominous a capella of Radiohead’s “Creep”, a Greendale student is maliciously attacked in the halls. As Dean Pelton holds a hectic press conference, they address the return of the Ass Crack Bandit. As the episode treads on, many other students will fall victim to this devious mastermind, including Troy. As the study group attempts to thwart more attacks, Annie and Jeff take on their roles as the lead detectives on the case.


With the entire episode shot in what appears to be both a parody and homage to David Fincher films, the super-serious crime set pieces, coupled with the press conference and the assembly hall moment for “Troy’s Law”, make for hysterical set pieces (especially if you’re a fan of crime shows like I am).

Dean Pelton: Abed, you’re special. Can’t you just stand at the scene of the crime and see what happened?

As Abed inevitably overloads from tropes of The Mentalist, Psych and Hannibal references, he walks off, leaving the study group no closer to discovering the identity of the Ass Crack Bandit. Troy’s role in all this is short and sweet; with very little screen time, he manages to be the high points of the episode.

Professor Hickey: Will you stop with the cups and the blankets?

Abed: This is how they comfort victims in movies.


Followed by a raucously funny rendition of “Troy’s Law”.


After a hilarious run in with Ben Folds (who played a pot-growing science teacher), Annie and Jeff are called into the Dean’s office, where he not only suspends them (in typical parody fashion) but gets a call from the Ass Crack Bandit. As they “trace the call” (and by that, Pelton’s secretary Rhonda tells them to check the extension the call came from), they end up going to the school’s stables.


Here they discover a very unusual suspect: Star Burns, who is in one of his most ridiculous situations to date. After Star Burns cops to the crime, the school goes back to a level of peace, well, at least the level of peace that is ever achieved at Greendale. Jeff doesn’t buy it that Star Burns is the Ass Crack Bandit. As Annie walks off, they come to the realization that the Ass Crack Bandit could possibly be a woman.

As the episode ends, a video of potential suspects is shown leaving the viewer pondering: who is the Ass Crack Bandit?


The Good

+ Ass Crack Bandit song.

+ Running parody of crime dramas.

+ Troy's Law.

+ The return of Professor Duncan and Star Burns.

+ The Cat Car.

The Bad

- Some of the gags felt very forced.

- Pierce may be gone, but now he's dead too?


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