Community Math

An Equation by NewlyRegisteredRandom

AV Club Link:,70958/#comment-479727384

Since unlike most of you, I grade Community episodes not totally relative to the show, but mostly relative to everything else on TV (which is why anything less than a B grade, which normally indicates a quality episode of TV, is a bad episode of the show in my books), I'm thinking of developing a new grading metric…

([(Ch x 5.75) + (Cd)] * [(iSA) * 3 + JPM] x [(RiG)]) + ([Swf + 6] + [Sr] + [TM x 3])

([(P ABLs/c x 11.375) + [cAn2 + cB] + [tBj x 4]]) + ( [tIRISH x 1.2] x [DONGLOVER…s])

([qWS – Cn * 3] + [DP2] / [RAGE]) x ([GSB / 2 + VAG])

([MCGHWb + LdoS])


Ch = Callback humor
Cd = Character development
iSA = Importance within seasonal arc
JPM = Jokes per minute
RiG = References I get
Swf = Setpiece wow factor
Sr = Satisfying resolution/revelation
TM = Tag Multiplier

P ABLs/c = Probability of Annie-Britta Lesbian subtext or context
cAn2 = Cut of Annie's neckline squared
cB = Curly Britta
TbJ = Tightness of Britta's jeans
tIRISH = Topless McHale
DONGLOVER…s = Shirtless Donglover

qWS = Quality Winger Speech
Cn = Chang nullifier
DP2 = Dean puns squared
RAGE = Shirley Rage
GSB = Guest Star bonus
VAG = Visually Amazing Gags

MCGHWb = McKenna-Cutler-Ganz-Harmon Writing bonus
LdoS = Ludwig dialed on the score

…Too complex?  I have grade eleven math, so it's probably wrong in MANY areas, but it's the effort that counts, right?




  • I'm conflicted: this is simultaneously awesome and frightening in its specificity.

    /*Enthusiastic applause while backing away slowly*/

  • The_Tuna

     I'm no math expert, but this may be one of the greatest posts ever to grace this board. Well done, sir.

  • The science works out!

  • lol, VAG

    Community has the best VAG on TV


  • NewlyRegisteredRandom

    Community is second on the VAG index, because while Jacobs and Brie are good, Brie, Pare, List, Jones and Hendricks are an unstoppable 5-headed VAG jugglenob.

    …oh, the gags?  Yes.  Community in over 60 episodes has featured less car-crash related gags than Modern Family did in four non-consecutive episodes this season.

  • Someone needs to keep this, and go through every episode and give it a grade derived from this.

  • NewlyRegisteredRandom

    That would be awesome, but it certainly sure as shit isn't going to be me.

    I know it's probably flawed (the huge multiplier on Annie-Britta Lesbian Subtext would slant middling episodes like 21st c. Romanticism and Investigative Journalism…but then maybe Romantic Expressionism would get its due?), considering I can barely add, but I thought it would be fun.

    EDIT: Dave…that sequence DID take place entirely in Jack Black's mind…it was an obvious scene that hinted at the desire for the male (and some female) fans to see the lesbian subtext between the two of them acted on…in his head or not, we can't ignore the fact that it happened, and it did hint at something there.

  • DavetheDouchebag

    Investigative Journalism has very little subtext. The scene you are referring to takes place entirely in Jack Black's head. 21st Century Romanticism and Romantic Expressionism deserve the slant. 
    EDIT: I know that. Are you repeating that because you are misunderstanding my post?

  • SpongyandBruised

    I failed a semester of Pre-Cal, and this looks solid to me.

  •  I'm fine with this.

  • OccamsBlazer

    You're the Bill James of Wingermetrics.

  •  i think you need a derivative in there

  • OccamsBlazer

    Don't worry, I got this, I'm an engineering major.

    If we could use this system to measure the chang quality of episodes over a period of time, like a season, we could find an equation for the graph that best models the data.

    Taking the derivative of that equation, we can not only measure the chang in quality from an discrete time period, like one semester, but also determine the chang in quality at any instant.

    Essentially, much of differential calculus boils down in finding ways to determine and measure the instantaneous rate of something, or the chang in something over an incredibly small period of time.

  •  i love this comment both for its understanding of math and for the constant use of 'chang'

  • Yeah, maybe a limit and a sigma.

  •  oh i can no longer calculate either limits, summations (what you use sigmas for) or derivatives so they might as well be swahili to me as well.  still if you ever take calculus have fun with that stuff

  • In college, I took two (required) Calculus classes and remember nothing, except that I was glad to be done with them. 

  • NewlyRegisteredRandom

    Yeah, you both might as well be speaking Swahili to me now…

    The awesome thing though is that someone who was math-savvy could easily develop an accurate formula similar to this on which to grade the episodes.