While watching the latest Captain America film, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, I noticed a cameo by Danny Pudi, who plays Abed in the TV show Community. I didn't take this as a meaningful event, until I watched the latest Community episode ("Basic Sandwich"). In one part of it, they meet a locked up computer genius, who built a huge computer called Raquel, who is capable of "feeling". It seems both the room and the computer share great similarity to Arnim Zola as he appeared in The Winter Soldier.

To compare, I give you some snapshots taken from Community (left) and The Winter Soldier (right):

First comparison image (community-left, captain america-right)

Second comparison image (community-left, captain america-right)

Can anyone explain these occurrences? Why and how this link was made?

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    Community is famous for parodying movies and TV shows, and being extremely self-referential. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 15:49

2 Answers 2


In a recent article in Empire Magazine, Winter Soldier Director Anthony Russo spilled the beans on a number of "easter eggs" included in the movie;

Anthony: “Did Danny beg us to be in the movie? I think we begged him! We love Easter Eggs. When Redford opens the fridge, there’s a Newman’s Own dressing in there. Then there's the gravestone at the end of the movie… We like layers. So [casting Community star Danny Pudi] was a nod to all the Community fans. You know Abed loves cameos, so we figured [we’d put him in]. We hadn’t officially decided [whether that was Abed], but knowing (Community creator) Dan Harmon, he’ll find a way to use it.”

It's pretty clear that the inclusion of a similar looking computer room and an upright computer (complete with a crayonised version of the computer face seen in C.A.II) was an in-joke between Community team and the Winter Soldier team.

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    You haven't included the main link between the two - that the main directors for Community also directed The Winter Soldier. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 12:57
  • @drrdizzle - Keen mentioned it in his answer, directly below this one.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 13:01
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    I know that, but it seem that being as yours is the top rated answer and the accepted answer, it should probably include all the neccessary information, unless there is some kind of rule against duplicating information from other answers. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 13:06
  • @drrdizzle - There's no formal rule, but I've always felt that cannibalising other people's answers takes away from the effort they put in. I'll occasionally do it if it supplements or enhances the points I've already made or conflicts directly with a point I've already made.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 13:12
  • The random downvoter was me when I originally saw that you did not include the fact that the Russo Brothers directed and produced Community. It's now been over an hour and I cannot undo my downvote. Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 14:49

The directors of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, worked on Community previously. See their IMDb pages: one and two. They directed and executive produced many episodes of Community before they started working on Captain America: TWS. So they gave Danni Pudi (Community's Abed) a cameo. Not sure if they purposefully included the similar old computer settings though, but it's possible.

  • The Community episode was likely produced after The Winter Soldier. Both released April 2014.
    – OrangeDog
    Commented Jul 23, 2019 at 12:12

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