Greendale is probably the last place Britta Perry (Gillian Jacobs) ever thought she would find herself. Her disdain for establishment and critical personality led her to put little stock in formal education. At Greendale, Britta sees herself as the voice of reason for the rest of the group, often getting involved in the other's problems inadvertently. Although she is sometimes seen as full of herself, self-righteous and bossy because of her strict ethics and readiness to criticize, her strong will and varied life experiences have made her a frequent source of advice and aid for the other students in the study group on "Community."
After dropping out of high school in order to "write the word 'lies' on newspaper boxes." She later became involved with a group of anarchists who routinely vandalized billboards, but was eventually voted out of the group for perceived non-commitment. Her later exploits before Greendale Community College included foot modeling, being tear gassed at a World Trade protest and taking a sabbatical in Africa. Britta came to Greendale Community College after a revelation in which she realized she was "almost thirty and flat broke."
Despite her somewhat authoritative dynamic within the group, Britta has been continually humbled by her experiences with the group. For example, there is a recurring joke on the show involving the study group's seemingly relentless ridicule over her East Coast accent, particularly her offbeat pronunciation of the word "bagel." Other times, Britta is called out for being a "buzz kill," an adjective that she has had to learn to take in stride. This ridicule often forces Britta to take a look inside, sometimes to question her beliefs or to simply have a laugh at herself.
Britta also has a very interesting relationship with another study group member, Jeff (Joel McHale). The study group originally formed when Jeff told Britta an elaborate lie in order to get her to go out with him. Jeff had expected the counterfeit study group to only include himself and Britta, but Britta invited several others to attend as well. In order to save himself from humiliation, Jeff executed an elaborate plan to get all the students talking about their problems, thus taking the attention away from himself. After Britta realizes this and demands that Jeff make it right, he talks his way into motivating and creating a sense of community between the students, thus cementing the continuation of the study group. Jeff's dubious ethics are a recurring theme in the show, and Britta is always quick to offer a moral perspective (or criticism). As a result of this dynamic, the two often act as the "parents" of the group, growing and maturing through their experiences in that role.
The character of Britta serves to balance the quirks of the other group members by adding a worldly and moral edge. Her strength as a person allows her to help the other characters grow, but, in contrast, she seems to grow through keeping the group together and being involved in the lives of others.
"Fine! I cared. I'm a girly girl. I like boys, and I don't like it when they're mean to me and I don't like it when they stop kissing me and start kissing my friends. I'm not that cool. I'm not Juno. Okay, homeslice?"
"I've lived in New York, Troy; I know what a bagel is."
"I was wrong. Material possessions are important. Think how much happier the Jefferson's were than that family on 'Good Times'. "