It's Halloween at Glendale Community College, and everyone's excited. We're just seven episodes into this show's strong first season, but we know by now that mass excitement can only lead to disaster. And hilarity.
Annie decides to host a "Dia de los Muertos" party so she'll get extra credit in Spanish class - but mostly so she can throw her first successful party in the school's library. It's all part of her sad but endearing pursuit to be cool.
Meanwhile, Jeff finally sets his sights on a new woman (the unsatisfying Jeff/Britta will-they-or-wont-they plot was beginning to drag) - his statistics professor. Unlike Britta, Professor Short Skirt says she's interested but won't date students, even if they're older than she is. Hints of Britta's jealousy are subtle, thankfully, which plays out much more naturally. Shirley, meanwhile, is more visibly upset about the Jeff's flirtation - but she's just projecting anger because her ex-husband visited and asked for her wedding ring back earlier. Ouch.
Annie guilts Jeff into coming to the party. It's important he comes because he's cool and if he comes, everyone else will, she explains. He begrudgingly agrees. (As awesome as Joel McHale is, I'm kind of over how cool Jeff may be.)
The party starts and everyone but Jeff is in costume. Pierce wears a Beastmaster costume after downing some old-person pills. (Abed's warning to Pierce about his own grandfather: "One time he started hallucinating and ran down the street with no pants on, which in the Gaza Strip is considered a real party foul.") Abed, the show's scene-stealer, is dressed up as Batman with the goofy Christian Bale voice to match. It's eerily spot-on and worth watching several times.
Senor Chang informs Jeff that Hot Statistics Professor is at a faculty Halloween party across campus. Jeff convinces Senor Chang to take him. But that means he's left Annie's party and the rest of the crowd will soon follow ("I don't want to miss the news," Starburns worries). Annie freaks out, Pierce trades his drugs for illegal ones and Annie freaks out some more. Pierce has a majorly bad trip (Troy: "It's like Grumpy Old Men but not hilarious.") that leads to a hallucination where Annie seductively asks Pierce about Woodstock and Sputnik. Britta, ostensibly concerned, crashes the faculty party with most of the gang to mess up Jeff's game.
It eventually works, and Jeff, now donned in an irresistible cowboy costume, comes back to the library to save the day. "You are too old to be tripping," he tells Pierce, who by then has built a dangerous fort of tables and chairs and is threatening suicide. When the desk fort topples over, Batman (Abed) rescues Pierce and Jeff and closes out the episode by launching into a monologue worthy of the Dark Knight. (I still think Community makes pop culture references in the best way.)
I leave you with the hilarious episode tag between Troy and Abed, who are both still in Christian Bale-Batman voices:
Troy: "That's one of my biggest fears."
Abed: "What is?"
Troy: "If I ever, like, wake up as a donut..."
Abed: "You would eat yourself?
Troy: "I wouldn't even question it."
(If that's not funny to you, this show might not be for you.)
Watch Thursday night's episode for free on Hulu here.