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July 31, 2014

The Office: Branch Closing

by Michael Sciannamea, posted Nov 9th 2006 10:50PM

Will Michael survive the corporate upheaval?(S03E07) I'm sure that many of us have either been laid-off from their jobs or know someone that has, so this episode surely hit home with quite a number of people.

As what took place with the British version of The Office, Jan tells Michael that corporate has decided to close the Scranton office and will transfer a few staffers to the Stamford branch. Someone once said to me that you never truly find out what a person is made of until you seem him/her deal with a crisis. Watching Michael go to extremes to save his employees (and himself) showed that despite his overbearing, obnoxious, pompous personality, he does have a soul, and you ended up rooting for him to save the day. Of course, it was all moot when we learned earlier that after Josh decided to move on to Staples, the Stamford branch would be closed and merged into Scranton.

I thought Stanley's initial reaction to finding out that his job would probably be eliminated was priceless! The look on his face when he talked about retiring and taking it easy was marvelous and, of course, the disappointed demeanor he had when he learned that he would still be on the job was great too. Stanley is truly a terrific character and I would like to see an episode where he gets the bulk of the attention.

Of course, the inevitable "reunion" of Jim and Pam back in the same office was a major theme throughout this episode. They both akwardly referred to it, but they didn't come out and say what they were feeling. Well, Jim did tell Jan that he was unsure about taking on the number two role in Scranton because of a personal situation, but in the end he took it because, frankly, he figured the job will pay him more and he gets to go back home. Plus, we all know there's still something between him and Pam, and maybe he wants to take another shot at winning her. Let us not forget that Roy will be lurking about as well, albeit as an employee of a new company taking over the warehouse.

However, Karen flat out admitted that she had a thing for Jim, so the highlights from next week's episode shows here arriving at Scranton and meeting Pam, so a storyline that could pit the two ladies competing for Jim may well emerge.

I have to say though that Ryan's attitude toward Kelly is getting a bit tiresome. He expresses all sorts of feelings that he doesn't want to be with her, but he attended the Diwali celebration with her and they seem to spend a lot of time together. His attempt to break up with her fell very flat, and when she ran into his arms after finding out their jobs were save, he didn't exactly resist. It's put up or shut up time for him.

Still, the attempt by Michael to imitate Michael Moore and confront the corporate bosses (with Dwight tagging along) demonstrated that he does have some backbone. OK, probably a very disjointed backbone, but give him credit for having enough guts to even attempt to carry out his and Dwight's plan. Speaking of Dwight, how's he going to handle Jim as Michael's number two? If you thought there was tension between them before, wait until they are back in the same room again.

With Michael about to take on the responsibility as the boss of two merged branches, will he pull a David Brent and get himself canned? Not bloody likely, since the show is not designed to have a limited run. However, you can bet that Jan will have him on an extremely short leash, and we could see a new character come on the scene and function as Michael's direct supervisor. But that probably won't happen until late this season (if at all), so I guess we'll have to be content with the merry mix-ups that will be occuring with the return of Jim to Scranton and how Pam, Dwight, and Karen will deal with it.

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Kyle

Does anyone have a copy of the Diwali song in MPEG format? Please send to me.

November 16 2006 at 4:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Pete

>> Where's Creed!? He has some of the BEST lines for a secondary character, and I haven't noticed him in the past few episodes. >>

Like someone else said, Creed was selling off his computer equipment throughout the episode. Watch either NBC's or iTunes's version for that stuff.

November 16 2006 at 12:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jessy Scholl

Actually, I don't think Michael has told Dwight that the title was unofficial. I think that Michael implied that Dwight was the Assistant Manager though I don't remember what second season episode it was.

As for Creed, if you watch the producer's cut, he is very funny in selling off his equipment after the closing announcement.

Finally, regarding Jan's movement on the day. I think she started out from New York at about 6 AM in order to get to Scranton by 8 AM. She got out of her meeting with Michael and Toby at 8:30 AM and was on the road toward Stamford by 9 AM. She reached the Stamford branch by 12 PM to meet with Jim and Josh. I believe that the meeting took about 10 Minutes and a defeated Jan was out of there by 12:30 PM. Since she would have to eat lunch, she most likely left Stamford at 1:30 PM, which would have put her back in Scranton by 4:30 PM.

November 13 2006 at 4:23 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rebecca

As for Dwight being second in command at the local office, hasn't that been called unofficial several times? I'm pretty sure Michael has told him before that the title is unoffical and carries no authority.

November 11 2006 at 12:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Meredith

Of course we all know that nothing the writers every come up with is "predictable". In fact it's the exact opposite which is what gives this show it's enrapturing quality. I've heard other people mentioning that they think Ryan and Karen will hook up, but i see Ryan sticking with Kelly for a while. He's strangely into her.

As for Pam, i'm liking the new agressive Fancy New Beesley. Isn't this what we all admire about Karen?! I think Pam is stepping it up and taking those extra steps needed to boost her self-confidence and win Jim over! Because i'm a JAM fan of course, and although i love Karen's character, i think inevitably Jim and Pam will end up together! :)

November 10 2006 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Meredith

Of course we all know that nothing the writers every come up with is "predictable". In fact it's the exact opposite which is what gives this show it's enrapturing quality. I've heard other people mentioning that they think Ryan and Karen will hook up, but i see Ryan sticking with Kelly for a while. He's strangely into her.

As for Pam, i'm liking the new agressive Fancy New Beesley. Isn't this what we all admire about Karen?! I think Pam is stepping it up and taking those extra steps needed to boost her self-confidence and win Jim over! Because i'm a JAM fan of course, and although i love Karen's character, i think inevitably Jim and Pam will end up together! :)

November 10 2006 at 4:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Christine

Is it me or does Pam seem a little more goody-goody and know-it-all than last season? She seemed so much more assertive (almost aggressive) when she asked Michael what Jan called about.

I hope they don't make the love triangle thing completely predictable. (Maybe Karen will be Ryan's new woman?)

November 10 2006 at 1:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Yme Sandelmann

Excellent episode. It wasn't one of the funniest but it was very heart-felt and set things up for the future.
I'm very glad the writers decided to merge the branches. It sets up so many new conflicts: Off the top, of course the tension between Pam & Jim, Jim & Karen, Karen & Pam (as rivals), Pam & Roy, Roy & Jim (also as rivals, but who knows :P) and maybe also Roy & Karen. But it will also be great to see Jim and Dwight playing pranks on each other. And I really hope they keep Ed Helms on the show and make him a part of the Scranton office. It will be hilarious to see Dwight and him competing for the "craziest person alive" award.
And concerning the episode: Yes, it was sweet to see Karen confess her crush on Jim, see Pam being excited for Jim to come back. But the most heartfelt scene was Dwight and Michael in the car, speaking of their favorite moments in "The Office" (or just Dwight doing) so. Really made Dwight more human and showing us he has a heart and is not exactly an idiot, but a "social idiot" who does not know how the behave around people. Like Michael he is just trying to get some attention. Really love Rainn Wilson's performance :)
Bottom line: Eager waiting the great things to come :)

November 10 2006 at 1:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Garnet

Show Highlights:
The fax from Future Dwight about the poisoned coffee

Michael describing how he was disappointed with Bowling for Columbine

Roy quoting the hair metal band Cinderella


November 10 2006 at 12:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Meg

In response to #9, Jan did say (when she reappeared in Scranton) that she had driven something like 400 miles that day. Also, D-M does not have a factory in that office complex--they're a middleman, remember (take your daughter to work day). They rent space in the office park. I guess Bob Vance, Vance Refrigeration, bought out the office park company's warehouse. Still not exactly sure how that makes sense--I'm sure he wouldn't have bought the whole building...

Anyway, looking forward to Dwight learning that he's no longer the #2 guy...

November 10 2006 at 12:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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