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Community’s How I Met Your Mother Character Reference Explained


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Community season 3 featured a clever reference to How I Met Your Mother’s “Fake Moby” New Year’s mishap from the sitcom’s debut season.

Community season 3 featured a clever reference to a character from the early days of How I Met Your Mother. Despite airing on different networks, Dan Harmon’s NBC series made a callback to a memorable gag from the popular CBS sitcom. How I Met Your Mother was on the air for four years before Community premiered in 2009. The two comedy series both came to an end on their respecting channels in 2014, but Community was revived for one more season that aired on Yahoo! Screen.

On the surface, Community and How I Met Your Mother couldn’t be more different. Whereas the NBC series followed a study group from a fictional community college, How I Met Your Mother focused on a group of friends living in New York City as the main character, Ted Mosby, retold the epic tale of how he met his eventual wife. On a deeper level, the two comedies presented an array of shenanigans as the respective groups faced dating challenges, professional futures, and failed expectations that come with growing up. Both Community and How I Met Your Mother also had stellar ensemble casts and noteworthy guest stars.

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Related: Community: Why Britta Seemed Different In Later Seasons

Among the guests that appeared in both series was actor J.P. Manoux. First appearing in Community season 3’s episode titled “Contemporary Impressionists,” Manoux played a Moby impersonator that Ben Chang met at a bar mitzvah. Seeing as the man looked a lot like Dean Craig Pelton, Chang enlisted the help of “Faux-by” in an attempt to take over the school. Following a riot at the school, Faux-by switched places with Dean Pelton and impersonated the man for months. The study group then attempted to rescue the real Dean Pelton, but not before he and Faux-by got into a slap fight. The impersonator then claimed that “It’s hard out there for a fake Moby!,” which was a nod to Manoux’s previous portrayal of the bogus version of the American musician in How I Met Your Mother.

J.P. Manoux Also Played Fake Moby In HIMYM Season 1

HIMYM

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Nearly seven years before Manoux portrayed Faux-by in Community, he played Fake Moby in How I Met Your Mother season 1. The episode, titled “The Limo,” followed Ted and his friends on New Year’s Eve 2005 as they tried to have a night they would remember forever. While party-hopping, Ted saw Moby walking down the street, so the group gave him a ride in their limousine. Due to their excitement for hanging out with a celebrity, they became suddenly fearful when Moby pulled out a gun, explaining that someone at the party owed him money. Ted and the gang quickly realized that this man was not the real Moby. Not-Moby, whose real name was Eric, ended up a party that Marshall and Lily attended, but thankfully they escaped before the man attempted to get his money back.

Based on Manoux’s portrayal as a fake Moby in How I Met Your Mother, Community decided to build on the joke surrounding the actor’s resemblance to the famous recording artist. Manoux reprised his role as Faux-by for another special appearance in Community season 4, although that time around, he wasn’t involved in a plan to take over the college. More recently, the actor has appeared on popular shows like Shameless, Grey’s Anatomy, and Curb Your Enthusiasm. Manoux is also set to appear in the upcoming films, Nobody and Greatland.

Next: Community: How Season 6 Paid Tribute To Captain America’s Elevator Scene

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Updated: November 16, 2020 — 1:56 am

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