Economics of Marine Biology

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"Economics of Marine Biology"
Community episode
Episode no. Season 4
Episode 7
Directed by Tricia Brock
Written by Tim Saccardo
Production code 406
Original air date March 21, 2013 (2013-03-21)
Episode chronology
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List of Community episodes

"Economics of Marine Biology" is the seventh episode of the fourth season of the NBC sitcom Community, which originally aired on March 21, 2013.

Dean Pelton enlists the help of the study group in order to enroll a wealthy new student whose laziness is expected to bring much needed funds to Greendale.


Dean Pelton (Jim Rash) asks Jeff (Joel McHale), Britta (Gillian Jacobs), and Annie (Alison Brie) to help Greendale recruit Archie (Zack Pearlman), a lazy 22-year-old who has rich parents and given his history of spending seven years in high school, will likely inject the community college with tuition funds. While the Dean has set up wholesome activities to show Archie around the college, the school board would like to recruit him by any means necessary — including drugs, strippers and parties.

Not wanting Pierce (Chevy Chase) to be jealous of the attention given to the potential student, the Dean asks Jeff to spend the day with Pierce in order to take him off campus. They go to a barber's place where they have their beards shaved. Jeff expects it to be a bore, but then starts enjoying it, and regrets shaving his face himself. After seeing Archie arrive with a new scooter, gifted to him by City College, Greendale's competition in enrolling Archie, the Dean chooses to throw his ideas out and take the school board's suggestions.

Troy (Donald Glover) and Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown) start their first class of Physical Education, but the course is actually P.E.E. (Physical Education Education), where they are taught how to be gym teachers. Troy flounders under the pressure, but Shirley is quite adept at the class and quickly becomes the top student. When Troy is depressed by his poor performance, Shirley comforts him and the two work together to help continue Chang's (Ken Jeong) rehabilitation.

During a cafeteria party, with strippers and balloons, Archie overhears Magnitude (Luke Youngblood) saying his catchphrase, "Pop! Pop!" In order to make his decision and enroll, Archie demands ownership of the catchphrase, to which the Dean reluctantly agrees.

The next day, the Dean and Annie see a disheveled Magnitude, now struggling to cope with life and come up with a new catchphrase. They realize what they have done is morally wrong. The Dean wakes up Archie, who has passed out from the partying, and tells him that the Greendale he experienced was not the real Greendale and that if he wanted a college that gave him special treatment it would be elsewhere. Archie still enrolls, appreciative of the honesty and being treated like normal.

Pierce intercepts a text message meant for Jeff and finds out that he was being distracted. He is upset at the ruse. Jeff apologises and asks the rest of the group to be nicer toward Pierce.


  • Abed starts a new fraternity, the Delta Cubes.


This aired as episode seven, but was the sixth episode produced.[1]


The episode was initially watched by approximately 2.95 million viewers.[2]

The episode was met with mixed reviews. Todd VanDerWerff of The A.V. Club rated the episode with a B, saying it was, "curiously hollow, without any thematic weight."[3] where Alan Sepinwall of HitFix said it was, "perfectly decent example of the kind of campus hijinks episodes the series did a lot in season 1 before shifting towards more ambitious concepts in seasons 2 and 3."[4] and Gabrielle Moss of TV Fanatic remarked, "Do you think I couldn't tell that the Abed frat micro-subplot was eighty times more interesting than anything actually happening on screen in this episode?"[5] Eric Goldman of IGN gave the episode a positive score of 8.5, praising Chevy Chase's performance as Pierce.[6]


  1. ^ Saccardo, Tim (October 6, 2012). "That's a wrap on #Community Ep 406!". Twitter. Retrieved October 30, 2012. 
  2. ^ Bibel, Sara (March 22, 2013). "Thursday Final Ratings:'The Vampire Diaries', 'American Idol', 'Grey's Anatomy' & '1600 Penn' Adjusted Up; 'Beauty and the Beast' Adjusted Down". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved March 22, 2013. 
  3. ^ VanDerWerff, Todd (March 21, 2013). ""Economics of Marine Biology" S4 / E7". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 2, 2013. 
  4. ^ Sepinwall, Alan (March 21, 2013). "Review: 'Community' - 'Economics of Marine Biology': Whale hunt". HitFix. Retrieved May 2, 2013. 
  5. ^ Moss, Gabrielle (March 21, 2013). "Community Review: Splingles". TV Fanatic. Retrieved May 2, 2013. 
  6. ^ Goldman, Eric (March 21, 2013). "Community: "Economics of Marine Biology" Review - "Hookers! Blow! Hookers!"". IGN. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 

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