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In the aftermath of his wife leaving him, Chang becomes increasingly petty and spiteful towards his students, culminating in a twenty-page essay written entirely in Spanish. The study group persuades Jeff to approach Chang and persuade him to back-off a bit, but he's soon tempted to put personal gain over the good of the majority. On top of this Troy and Abed are having difficulties training their lab rat thanks to Troy's fear of rats, and Shirley is nervous about an upcoming presentation, which leads her in desperation to consult Pierce's advice.
The Community episode "Enviromental Science" provides examples of:
Annie: You have to get Chang to call off some of this homework. You're the one with the silver tongue.
Pierce: Go tongue Chang.
- Backhanded Compliment: And Chang doesn't catch it.
Chang: You make no mistake about this, Winger; I pleasured that woman greatly.
Jeff: Yeah. You look like you would have to. I'm not surprised you said that.
Dean: I'm here to kick of the first day of a new tradition at our school called "Green Week!"
Pierce: First we give a month to black history, now we're blowing 7 days on the Irish.
- Dude, Not Funny: In Spanish, Chang calls Pierce 'old'; Abed 'ugly'; and Shirley and Troy 'dirty'.
- Eek A Rat
- Epic Song: Intercut over three different storylines.
- Green Aesop: Parodied; the Dean decides to celebrate Green Week and announces that he's change the name of the college to Envirodale, only to be told the school is already named Greendale. The Dean then orders the 5,000 leaflets he's had printed with "Envirodale" on it destroyed, and another 5,000 printed up with Greendale in them.
- In The Tag of "Environmental Science," Pierce behaves like Michael Corleone in the restaurant scene from The Godfather, shooting Troy and Abed in the face with a water pistol filled with pepper water, then dropping the gun as he leaves.
- Abed and Troy's mouse is named after Fievel Mousekewitz, one of the characters in the movie An American Tail, in which he sings "Somewhere Out There", the song Abed and Troy sing to lure their mouse out.
- Moral Myopia: Jeff is asked to approach Senor Chang on behalf of the group and get him to call off some of the ridiculously harsh amounts of homework he's been setting. Chang, bonding with Jeff over his recent separation from his wife, agrees to call it off -- but only for Jeff. Jeff goes along with this, and when the other members of the group learn this and angrily call him out over it Jeff initially acts as if he's the one who's being wronged.
- It Makes Sense in Context: This clip is one of the show's most popular on YouTube, if not the most popular outside the Troy-Abed tag scenes at the end of each episode. In it, the Bro Rape guy and an Indian actor sing "Somewhere Out There" at a mouse in a vent; the naked Chinese mobster from The Hangover does an Irish tango kind of thing, screams, and starts making out with his dance partner as the host of The Soup silently watches; and that woman who worked with Dwight when he was at Staples talks very slowly about "orgasmically delicious" brownies in front of a mesmerized class (and briefly impersonates Jack Nicholson from The Shining), while Chevy Chase waves a sandwich in the air.
- Pierce Has A Point: Pierce actually has some effective public-speaking tips for Shirley.
- Sadist Teacher: Chang is shown to be especially petty and vindictive when dealing with his students.
- Sherlock Scan: Jeff uses one to deduce Chang's wife left him (Chang wore the same shirt twice in a week, taught the Spanish word for "wife" meant "liar" in class, and has a post-it note saying "enjoy it while it lasts" on his office's framed photo of him and his wife). Jeff explains he used to read juries like this as an attorney, to figure out the best angles to use in court.
- Squirrels in My Pants
- Strange Minds Think Alike:
Pierce: You know if Senor Chang gets any more crazy, he's going to win one of those Grammy awards.
Jeff: If that guy goes any more nuts, he's going to win a Grammy.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: While Ken Jeong certainly isn't hideous, Ben Chang's personality is pretty ugly. And, in any event, Andrea de Olivera ("Senora Chang") is far easier on the eyes.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Troy and rats, with Troy even referencing the trope namer. Also Chang and frogs, apparently.