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July 24, 2014

The Office: The Return

by Michael Sciannamea, posted Jan 19th 2007 12:28AM

the office(S03E13) Oh well. Another week, another great Office episode. What else is new?

At the end of the episode, I found myself wanting to place my hands around Andy's neck and squeezing until the sap oozed out. He has got to be the most obnoxious sitcom character in the last few years. Even Dwight Schrute at his most neurotic couldn't reach the heights of Andy's behavior. I, like Jim, missed Dwight.

Although the previews of this week's show emphasized the return of Oscar from his "gaycation" (as Kevin put it), that was not the central theme of the story. The story basically focused on Dwight, and how he has handled his resignation from Dunder Mifflin by finding a job at Staples, and Andy, who is doing everything he can to become Michael's confidante. Oscar's return to work was interesting, and Michael's decision to have a party to celebrate Oscar's "Mexican-ity" certainly added more hilarity to the situation.

But what really proved interesting was us getting a deeper glimpse into Angela. She displayed some real emotion over Dwight's resignation, and her expressions of guilt and remorse over what he did for her seemed heartfelt. Of course, her "Ice Queen" demeanor reared its ugly head again whenever Kevin tried to engage her into any communication.

What I'm particularly enjoying this season is that there is more exploration of Michael's personality. Yes, he's still is a boor a good part of the time, but we have seen him display more of his sensitive side as well as a seasoned businessman. This week, we got to seem him come to grips over the fact that his previous anger at Dwight was misplaced, and he was able to persuade Dwight to come back with pure conviction.

Beforehand, when Michael was surveying his staff as to how they were coping with the loss of the branch's number one salesperson, again Stanley comes out with a marvelous reaction and facial expression. If the writers developed an episode where we were treated to nothing more than Stanley's reactions to things going around him during a regular day at work, it would be nothing short of hilarious.

It seems obvious that Andy is a short-timer in Scranton. His undying quest to get in good with Michael ended up badly, and Jim and Pam's teaming up to prank him only fueled the fire. Dwight never displayed the kind of anger that Andy did when his cellphone with the "Rockin' Robin" ringtone found itself in the ceiling. Punching a hole in the wall? Not Dwight's style--he might threaten to engage in Ninja-like combat, but he would eventually settle down.

And what Office episode would be complete without another twist in the Jim-Pam-Karen saga. It was obvious there was tension in Jim and Karen's relationship, and Jim was able to rekindle his ability to engage in office hijinks rather easily with Pam. Later on, during the party, the moment we expected came to fruition when Jim admitted to Karen that he still had feelings for Pam. Karen walked out in a huff, and it's up in the air how long she will stay. However, although there have been indications lately that Pam is warming to Jim, I'm not so sure that those two are going to get together so easily. Somehow I think there will be reluctance by one of the parties in moving forward, but this storyline needs some further development.

To kind of sum things up, it appears that Andy's attempt to become Michael's friend has failed miserably, and it's only a matter of time before he leaves, whether on his own or being shown the door. No matter what, Andy will not go off quietly into the night. Plus, when Michael said that he doesn't want people sucking up to him unless they love him, it made sense, somehow.

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Judi

Well, double you tee eff are we suppose to do when Andy is fired. Live without Ed Helms?? Dear God People, he left TDS for this! And if Karen leaves too, then it's just back to the usual office peeps...not that there's anything wrong with that, but I'm enjoying the new conflicts the old schoolers must face. And now that Oscar has a new show coming out, how long are we to expect him to stay around? (I spose until CC renews Halfway for a second season.) Too many "ifs" running aboot.

January 23 2007 at 12:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
JayW

To the Office creative staff:
Please...PLEASE make Ed Helms' "Rockin' Robin" available on iTunes!!!! PLEASE!!!!!

January 22 2007 at 7:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Biggus Rickus

I think some people are missing the central aspect of Jim. He doesn't want to sell paper for a living. He has no idea what he wants to do otherwise, but he knows that paper is boring, as is corporate nonsense. He struggles with it at times, which is why he accepted the number two spot, but he doesn't want to be there. Calling him immature is misunderstanding the situation. He's more aimless than anything. I would have said slacker, but he actually takes his job somewhat seriously.

January 21 2007 at 10:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jane wied

Contrary to 99% of tv shows, The Office never lets me down. Yeah, I find some episodes funnier than others, but reading the posts helps me see the humor in all of them. I totally missed the music (Officer & a Gentleman) playing when Michael came for Dwight--but No one has mentioned when Michael came over to Dwight at Staples, he was helpng a customer and you could hear him off camera telling the customer,"You really wanna go with copy quality paper? Allright, it's your funeral!" Priceless! This show has more humor/talent/intelligence in its throw-away lines than many, many so-called sitcoms have in their whole show (According to Jim? Three &1/2 Men, anyone???)And I totally agree with the Grey's Anatomy post--The Office has more complex character relationships than any 5 Grey'a episodes combined (I guess, since I can never make it through an entire episode--it's just too inane}Anyway, that's my 2 pennies' worth!

January 20 2007 at 1:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
phexxa

@Liz #36.
yes, it was Kevin Reilly.
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117957762.html

January 20 2007 at 12:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
apsara

This show is becoming more and more predictable and trite.

Obvious plot devices:

Karen finds out about the crush. Next thing you know, it's oer with her and Jim.

Andy is *unbelieveably* obnoxious for someone who has managed to stay employed (and he's a sucky salesman, so why does he have a job?) His obnoxious behavior is the common foe that brings normal combatants together and alters who they "attack". Not only that, he manages to make everyone else look normal and sympathetic.

I did find it funny, but very formulaic and not clever at all.

January 20 2007 at 8:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Elizabeth

Not sure if anyone has mentioned this yet, but I'm pretty sure there's a cameo by NBC President Kevin Reilly (or they got someone who's a dead-on look alike.) It's at the top of the episode when Dwight is interviewing for new jobs (he's the guy Dwight hands three resumes to.) Anywho, thought that was pretty neat if it was infact Kevin.

January 20 2007 at 3:03 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Diana

Not to nitpick too much (but I will anyway!), but in response to post #5: Ryan added a tilde to the "n" and and an accent to the "e" in lemondade to make it more Spanish. I was laughing my butt off when I saw that!

January 20 2007 at 1:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
JPL

I've been watching The Office since the first season and, after catching this episode, I really have to hand it to the writers for slowly showing more sides to these characters. They could easily go on autopilot make Michael just an idiot, or Dwight being annoying, or Angela being bitchy. But this episode and the previous one reveals that there is so much more that can be done. The scenes where Angela apologizes to Oscar or Ryan's smug attitude toward Jim make me eager to see what other directions they can take the show in the future.
But they don't need to change Creed. He's fine just the way he is.

January 19 2007 at 9:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bob S.

Indeed, I thought it was an off episode -- many good moments, but too involved with quickly wrapping up plotlines. I thought Serious Michael was great and way overdue; I think Carrell plays the character well enough, but no buffoon that awful would ever stay employed as a manager. (And remember that utterly ludicrous scene in the episode in which Oscar left, where he didn't even know what "gay" meant? That level of stupidity on the writers' part is insulting to viewers.)

There's been a lot of writers' laziness this season. Remember the mom from Stamford, who was written out between episodes? "She doesn't work here anymore?" Bleh. It's still the funniest show on TV, but it isn't as good as it was.

And while I've loved Ed Helms' performance, the sad husk of the Daily Show, which has no good correspondents now, needs him a lot more. I really hope they're smart enough to get him back.

January 19 2007 at 7:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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