Jeff is daydreaming when Annie snaps him out of it. The study group minus Pierce has returned for their third year at Greendale.Troy and Abed make an announcement that they are moving in together. Dean Pelton then appears with a new look and attitude, proclaiming this school year will be different. When he leaves, Pierce finally arrives. He says that a summer of meditating with his church has reformed him and now he wants to rejoin them. Jeff says there is no for him to come back to the study group as the Biology class they are taking is full. Jeff tells him they will all still be his friends and leaves for class. The study group reluctantly follows his lead and Pierce is left alone in the study room. Unexpectedly, Chang suddenly bursts out of the air vent.
Jeff's musical daydream extravaganza.
In Biology class, Annie is worried about Pierce, but Jeff insists that the group is better off without him. Abed is distressed after he finds out Cougar Town has been pushed back to mid-season. The biology professor, Marshall Kane, introduces himself and begins his lecture with a story of how he saw a blade of grass breaking through the cement. Jeff's cell phone starts ringing which Kane tries to ignore. He ultimately loses his patience when it continues and ejects Jeff from class. Meanwhile, Dean Pelton is scolding campus security head Sgt. Nunez about the monkey in the air vent. He subsequently takes his next appointment with Vice Dean Robert Laybourne and berates him for buying an espresso machine for his Air Conditioning Repair School Annex. Robert asks that the Dean come see him tomorrow in his office, so they can talk about the matter further.
"This is Intro to Biology. I'm your Professor Doctor Marshall Kane Ph.D."
Britta shows up to the study group meeting eager to show Abed a replacement she found him for Cougartown called Cougarton Abbey. Abed starts watching the show on a laptop and thanks Britta. Jeff arrives, complaining about being kicked out by Kane. Annie turns his earlier speech against him saying that he's still the study group's friend despite not being in the same class. Jeff reluctantly agrees and leaves the study room just as Pierce arrives to tell them he is now in Biology class. He had been on the waiting list for the class, and a spot opened up due to Jeff being kicked out. The group happily welcomes him back as Jeff walks away angry.
Jeff is forced out of the group and Pierce is allowed to return.
In the cafeteria, Jeff is mocked by Leonard for eating alone when the study group shows up and joins him. Disturbed by how well they seem to be getting on without him and late for his next class, Jeff leaves in a huff. Abed finishes watching an episode of Cougarton Abbey, but when he sees that it's the series finale, he screams and goes into a catatonic state. Elsewhere, Jeff runs into Chang in the hallway who consoles him about his separation from the group. Chang says he doesn't need them anymore and makes a point about his own freedom as he is now living in the school's air vents. After seeing Chang slide back into his "home", Jeff resolves to somehow get back into the biology class.
Abed reacts badly to the ending of his latest TV obsession.
Meanwhile, Dean Pelton enters Robert Laybourne's office for his appointment and is taken aback by how spacious it is. Robert explains that the very successful A/C Repair Annex is the major source of Greendale's funds. He berates the Dean for daring to question any purchases made by him. He calls in his lawyers to draw up a new agreement between Greendale and the annex. Elsewhere, Jeff goes to Professor Kane's office and apologizes. When he asks if he can return to his class, Kane says only if he gives up his cell phone. He likens the phone to walls Jeff has built up to protect himself from others; he says not a single blade of grass can get through his defenses. Jeff then notices a photo which has Pierce in it above Kane's desk. He snatches it, convinced it's proof they are in cahoots.
FEEL MY POWER AS IT SURGES THROUGH YOU!
On the way over to the study room, he bumps into Chang again. He shows Chang the picture and tells him that it's proof that will get him back into the study group. Chang grabs the picture, thinking he'll be able to use it for himself and escapes into a hallway air vent. Jeff follows, unaware that campus security is about to flood the air vents with monkey gas. Jeff manages to catch Chang and retrieve the picture but soon takes a full blast of monkey gas and starts to experience hallucinations. He sees himself alone in the study room, then sees himself eating his cell phone, and turning into Pierce. His final vision is himself in a hospital bed, reaching out to the the study table.
The study table as the Monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Back in the study room, Britta shows Abed another show called "Inspector Spacetime". Abed is immediately snapped out of his funk after watching a scene. Jeff then arrives completely disheveled. He shows the group the photo, trying to expose a connection between Pierce and Kane. Pierce points out the photo is of him and a rapper who was once a spokesman for Hawthorne Wipes. The group is appalled when Jeff inadvertently makes a few racist remarks trying to defend himself. Pierce tries to stick up for him, but that only angers Jeff who excuses himself and leaves. He quickly returns with a fire ax and tries to destroy the study table. Dean Pelton then appears and informs them that this year will end up being the same as the previous one except with a smaller budget.
Later in the Dean's office, he breaks the news to the campus security force that he can no longer pay their salary. Sgt. Nunez ends up being the only who agrees to stay . After he leaves, a section of the ceiling's air vent drops onto Pelton's desk. Inside is Chang who admits he is homeless, giving the Dean an idea. Meanwhile, the study group finds Jeff in the student lounge. He admits that he didn't want Pierce to be a part of the group anymore. When Annie asks that Jeff stop being her friend, Pierce confesses he bribed Kane to kick Jeff out of the class. The group attempts to vote him out, but Jeff convinces them to let Pierce stay with another speech about friendship.
Chang at his lowest point.
Afterwards, he takes Pierce aside and asks why he lied for him since they both know that Kane would never accept bribes. Pierce explains that he took pity on him after he saw how hard of a time Jeff was having being excluded just like he was last year. Annie is worried about what Jeff will do now since he's still kicked out of Biology, but he reassures her that "Life has a way of breaking through." In Kane's office, Star-Burns is trying to convince the professor to form a partnership with him to sell drugs. Kane opens a gift that was put on his desk and sees that it's Jeff's cell phone with a blade of grass sticking through it. While contemplating the apology sent to him by Jeff, he tells Star-Burns he just lost his seat in his class.
Britta tells the study group that she has declared Psychology as her major and wants to become a therapist. The study group can barely contain their laughter at the announcement when Chang shows up dressed in a campus security uniform and tells them to keep the noise down, and Jeff says this the year they are gonna die, to which the rest of the Study group agree.
Winger speech: At the beginning of the episode, Jeff convinces the study group to not let Pierce back in because they are all "regular friends" now. He then convinces them at the end of the episode to let Pierce back in.
NOOOOO!: Abed screams twice when he sees that Cougartown is pushed to mid-season and the "original show" it's based off of, "Cougarton Abbey" lasts only six episodes.
Screw you guys: Jeff gets kicked out of Biology and stops studying with the group. Pierce started the episode out of the group but rejoins, filling the vacant spot in Biology. Then the group nearly votes Pierce out again but is stopped by Jeff.
Shut up, Leonard!: Leonard mocks Jeff for eating by himself in the cafeteria. Jeff tells him to shut up and says he heard about his prescription socks. Leonard raspberries back.
WWBJD?: Shirley suggests baptizing Abed while he's in a catatonic state.
You're the worst!: After Troy is angry that Britta has "broken" Abed, he says she should found a ruiners club since she ruins everything. She then ruins his analogy about her ruining a ruiner's club.
Résumé: The Dean vows to end the "National Lampoonery" antics that seem to happen regularly at Greendale. Pierce, who was out of the group at that moment, is played by Chevy Chase, who starred in several National Lampoon's films. Not only does the Dean fail to end the hijinks, Chevy immediately returns to rejoin the group.
Up against the wall: Dean Pelton's statement about having a smaller budget this year is reference to the smaller budget Community had for Season Three.
Jim Rash is elevated to a regular cast member beginning with this episode.
“We're really doing this without Pierce? It's so sad.”— Annie
“Yeah, we have parted ways with our closest, oldest, craziest, most racist, oldest, elderly, crazy friend, and he's not coming back.”— Jeff
“I'm back.”— Pierce
“Oh, Star-Burns. I see you added a lizard to your special hat and sideburns. Am I missing anything?”— Shirley
“Yeah, The human being underneath it all. But no one's really interested in that, are they?”— Star-Burns
“If I wanted to run a monkey hotel I'd install a banana buffet. I'd use vines as elevators, and I'd put tail holes in the bathrobes and I'd lower all the shower knobs.”— Dean Pelton
“You've really thought this through.”— Sgt. Nunez
“I can't believe Jeff attacked a table with a fire axe and still only managed to be the second craziest man in the room.”— Shirley