“Community” Pulls Off 3 Year Long “Beetlejuice” Gag

The writers of the comedy show “Community” clearly have patience.

Over the show’s three seasons, they have sprinkled the word “Beetlejuice” into characters’ dialogue three times, once per season. If the word is said three times, according to the lore of the 1988 hit move “Beetlejuice,” the infamous ghost who “exorcises” humans will be summoned.

This season, during the episode “Horror Fiction In Seven Spooky Steps,” the character Annie says “Beetlejuice” for the third time and, for an instant, a character dressed as Beetlejuice darts through the background of the shot.

No explanation was given within the episode for the flash appearance of the famous Tim Burton character, played in the film by Michael Keaton.

Dan Harmon, the show’s creator, Tweeted about the hidden joke: “The Easter egg that took three years to hide. Our show is TOTALLY ACCESSIBLE.”

A YouTube user uploaded a clip of the three “Beetlejuice” moments spanning the series cut together, with the finale showing the character darting through the background.

No one from “Community” was able to comment on whether Keaton reprised his role for the guest spot.

The show is now on a mid-season break.