If you thought that Community had a monopoly on the whole “fake clip show” thing, think again. “The Magician’s Code Pt. 1” filled up much of the twenty minutes prior to the birth of young Marvin Waitforit Eriksen with cut-aways to manufactured memories that Ted and Robin recalled in order to keep his mother occupied while she vainly waited for her drunk-as-a-skunk hubby to make his way back from Atlantic City. As is typically the case though, Community did it significantly better, although honestly, the fake clips here were funnier than anything else in the episode.
We begin mere seconds after the previous episode ended, with a newly-reunited Robin and Ted rushing into the Eriksen abode to find Lily wracked with contractions on the sofa. Going to the hospital is out for the time being because the contractions aren’t four minutes apart yet. And besides, Marshall isn’t there and she understandably wants the big lug present at the birth of their first baby. So to kill time — and to keep Robin from telling more stories about all the foals she ushered into the world during her forced exile to her family’s ranch one summer or Ted from showing off more of his cheesy labor announcement e-mail (the full version of which can be viewed here) — they start telling her stories from their past.
What kind of stories? Well, there was that time she and Ted had the worst cab ride ever, where their driver assaulted a squeegee man. And who can forget the time that Robin bragged to the boys about spending the night with Toronto’s own Neil Young only to have them tell her it wasn’t Neil Young when they laid eyes on him. (As a good Canadian, you’d think she’d be able to spot a fake Neil Young from fifty yards away. Isn’t his face emblazoned on the national currency up there?) The best of their stories is “Where Does that Door Go” in which Ted spots a heretofore unseen door in MacLaren’s and, one-by-one, each member of the group passes through it to discover that… well, you’ll have to wait for the next episode to learn the button on that particular gag.