Environmental Science (Community)

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"Environmental Science"
Community episode
Episode no.Season 1
Episode 10
Directed bySeth Gordon
Written byZach Paez
Production code108
Original air dateNovember 19, 2009 (2009-11-19)
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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"Debate 109"
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"The Politics of Human Sexuality"
Community (season 1)
List of Community episodes

"Environmental Science" is the tenth episode of the first season of the American comedy television series Community. It aired in the United States on NBC on November 19, 2009. The episode centers on Spanish instructor Ben Chang's (Ken Jeong) unreasonable behavior after his wife leaves him.


Dean Pelton (Jim Rash) announces that Greendale will be having its annual environmentalism initiative "Green Week", culminating with a performance by the band Green Day.

In the Spanish class, the teacher Ben Chang (Ken Jeong) takes a small infraction by Annie (Alison Brie) to force everyone to write a twenty-page essay due the next Monday. The study group finds the assignment untimely, in particular for Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown) who has a marketing presentation coming due, and for Abed (Danny Pudi) and Troy (Donald Glover) who are in the midst of a biology lab experiment. The group asks Jeff (Joel McHale) to intervene with Chang to cancel the assignment.

Pierce (Chevy Chase) offers to help Shirley overcome her public speaking anxiety for her presentation. She finds that his advice seems strange and useless, such as pretending to be giving the audience a sandwich or using sexual innuendo to catch attention, and frets that she will fail.

Abed and Troy are trying to train a rat named Fievel to respond to their duet of "Somewhere Out There", but during a test, the rat accidentally escapes. Troy, revealing that he is afraid of rats, is unable to come out of shock to help catch the rat, which has escaped in the air ventilation system. Abed worries he may have to find another lab partner to get their rat back.

Jeff finds that Chang is bitter over his wife (Andrea de Oliveira) throwing him out. Jeff takes pity on Chang and tries to help him move on, spending the night drinking with him in exchange for not having to do the essay. The next day, the rest of the study group is infuriated to learn that Jeff appears to have already completed the assignment while Chang increases the importance of the essay on their course grade. The group catches Jeff talking to Chang about getting a good grade in exchange for spending more time with Chang, and insist he fix the problem. Instead, he spends the next night with Chang, together ridiculing the homework of other students. Chang breaks down into tears, concerned for his ex-wife; Jeff tries to console him and realizes he still loves his wife.

The promised concert arrives, but Dean Pelton finds that the band is actually "Greene Daeye", an Irish folk music ensemble. As the band begins to play, Chang spots his wife in the crowd. The viewer is then given a montage: as Abed is joined by Troy as they sing "Somewhere Out There" to successfully recover Fievel, Chang and his wife steal the spotlight dancing at the concert, while Shirley realizes the value of Pierce's advice and gives a highly successful presentation. After dancing, Chang announces that the essay assignment is cancelled.


Around 4.86 million Americans watched "Environmental Science".[1]

Emily VanDerWerff of The A.V. Club rated the episode A-, praising the show's continued development but worrying that some viewers might find Chang's character too broad and irritating.[2]


  1. ^ Seidman, Robert (November 20, 2009). "Thursday broadcast finals: Grey's Anatomy up; The Vampire Diaries, 30 Rock down". Retrieved June 15, 2012.
  2. ^ VanDerWerff, Emily (November 19, 2009). "Environmental Science". The A.V. Club. Retrieved June 15, 2012.

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