Community has done it again. Last night’s episode entitled “Basic Lupine Urology” was a tribute to NBC’s landmark drama Law & Order. Dan Harmon and company went all out, changing everything from the opening credits to using the classic Law & Order [Doom! Doom!] effect. Even if you weren’t a devoted viewer of the late L&O, you could appreciate all the details in this week’s episode.

Check out our review…


The Players:

Episode Title: “Basic Lupine Urology”

Annie discovers the study group’s yam experiment for biology class smashed on the floor. So the group mobilizes to expose the criminal and save their grade. Once Abed and Troy think they have located the perpetrator, they conduct a “trial,” with a reluctant Professor Kane (Michael K. Williams) serving as judge. But later, Jeff realizes that the plot is thicker than it seems.

The Good:

  • Law & Order Format: Harmon and the rest of the writers deserve a round of applause for capturing all of L&O’s characteristics. The way the victim is always found by unsuspecting strangers in mid-conversation, the good cop/bad cop routine, the nerdy photo lab person and the super short scenes. Even with all that, the writers still managed to maintain their sense of humor because only on Community would someone stage an elaborate investigation and trial for a smashed yam. Yup, a yam.
  • The Law: We know that Jeff has a shady law-past, but Annie really shined as his partner. Dressed in full ‘lawyer’ attire (button-up shirts and blazers), she pushed the truth out of the culprit. Annie has been pretty underused lately so it was nice to see her all fired up.
  • The Order: Troy and Abed took on the roles of good cop, bad cop. Although they kept alternating the bad cop because it was too stressful for them. One of the best moments of the night came when Troy told Todd, “You have the right to do whatever you want. Nothing you say or do could be used against you by anyone, but we’d really like it if you came with us. Please and thank you.” Great line.
  • The Hotdog Reference: What would a L&O tribute be without hot dogs? Yes, there was a hot dog vendor (Garrett) and a hot dog exchanged hands. That’s how committed this episode was. Cheers!

The So-So:

  • Unexpected Death (SPOILERS): Hold on, in all seriousness though, did Harmon just kill off Starburns?
  • More Britta: The episode could’ve used some more of Britta’s wickedly funny knowledge on how to make a regular photo “old west color.”

The Quotable:

  • “Like a C? Why don’t I just get pregnant at a bus station?”
  • “Youth! Scatter!”
  • “Hey idiot, guess what? We don’t care about the backpack.”
  • “We named the yam Pam, it rhymed.”
  • “Keep the change Garrett. You know what, keep the hot dog.”
  • “Well, well, well, look at this Abed. He weaves baskets and lies.”
  • “Todd Jacobson, you have the right to do whatever you want. Nothing you say or do could be used against you by anyone, but we’d really like it if you came with us. Please and thank you.”
  • “We agreed to withhold that information as part of a pinky swear with the witness.”
  • “Can we take a sidebar in this sidebar?”


So we didn’t learn anything new about the characters, but when you’ve got a parody this good, nothing else matters. The writers were able to take a ridiculous premise – a smashed yam – and turn it into a full-on engaging mystery. No one does theme episodes like Community. Please keep ‘em coming!

Rating: 8.5/10

Community airs Thursdays nights at 8 p.m. on NBC.

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What did you think of last night’s episode?