|Portrayed by NA|
|Hometown||a land without Sun|
|At Greendale to...||...to be a buzzkill|
|“||I hope he transfers to hell!||”|
In the study group's first year together at Greendale, Shirley had a classmate and friend named Gary . Raised in Finland and studying abroad, he was a humorless and boring person who preferred to wear loose-fitting jeans. Despite other people's reactions to Gary, Shirley staunchly defended him, excusing his behavior and attitude due to the fact that he came from a land without sun. When the study group was considering whether or not to let Buddy into the group, Shirley eagerly volunteered Gary as another possible candidate. However, he was loathed by the group and (ironically) was called by Britta a "buzz-kill". Shirley later informed the study group that he was transferring schools and would be attending the end of the year transfer formal called "The Tranny Dance". The study group celebrates much to Shirley's chagrin. He is never seen onscreen and first mentioned by name in the Season One episode "Investigative Journalism". His last mention was in the Season One finale "Pascal's Triangle Revisited".
Gary exists on "Community" as an example of the popular trope the "Unseen character". This is someone referenced to and known by the main characters on the show but never actually seen onscreen. In other televison shows Norm's wife Vera in "Cheer's and Nile's wife Marris in "Frasier" were examples of this. On Community, Pierce's mom is another example. A few other characters on the show were mentioned often before they were properly introduced onscreen include:
- Pierce's father, Cornelius Hawthorne, was referenced first in the Season One episode "Introduction to Statistics", seen in a old Hawthorne Wipes commercial in the Season Two episode "Celebrity Pharmacology 212" and then properly introduced in the Season Three episode "Advanced Gay".
- Fat Neil was first mentioned by Jeff in the Season Two episode "Conspiracy Theories and Interior Design" and was properly introduced a few episodes later in "Asian Population Studies"
- Jeff's father, William Winger, was often mentioned by Jeff over the last few Seasons and is set to finally make an appearance in the Season Four episode "Cooperative Escapism in Familial Relations".