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October 4, 2015

The Office: Crime Aid

by Jay Black, posted Oct 23rd 2008 11:37PM
I can see what Holly sees, I guess...(S05E04) (Warning: Spoilers ahead!) Was it just me, or did tonight's Office feel like a sweeps episode? Look how much was crammed into it: Holly and Michael's first (and, er, second) trip to Funkytown, the return of Roy, a possible declaration of victory in the Dwight-Andy war for Angela's affections, an ominous David Wallace realization, and (hope of hopes) Jim's assertion that he's "not that guy."

All that and it's only October. Tonight's episode was (just about) worth missing the first half of the Phillies' game for, and that's saying something...

There was a lot going on tonight, but the heart of the episode revolved around Andy and Angela's impending wedding. Dwight, like a lot of us, assumed the wedding would never actually happen, but now that they've set a date, the idea that he might lose Angela forever suddenly becomes real. The only person he can turn to for advice is Phyllis (as she's the only one besides the documentary crew who knows about the affair). Her advice: an ultimatum.

Dwight's saga underscores exactly what it is I love about The Office: it has an uncanny ability to mix genuinely emotional moments with some of the sharpest, darkest comedy on TV. It really shouldn't work as well as it does, but like those crazy Top Chef recipes that I'm convinced no human could actually enjoy (tequila ice cream, really?), The Office manages to mix the contrasting flavors perfectly.

Two examples:

1. When he first approaches Phyllis for advice and actually shows some real emotion for Angela. We hold just a beat and then, about her food choice Dwight says, "that's really fattening."

2. After Angela rejects Dwight's ultimatum with a cold turn of the head, we're left to ponder his heartbroken misery while a barely listenable strained set of blues is played by the security guard.

Everything that makes The Office great was just bubbling around tonight in a big vat of awesome. If this episode were a Star Trek movie, it'd be Wrath of Khan. All it needed was a shirtless Ricardo Montalban.

Other stuff:

-- Jim meets Roy and Roy doesn't punch him; instead, he infects Jim with the same kind of jealously that broke a barroom mirror back in season 3. Jim is almost taken by it, driving nervously to New York so he can check up on Pam. Just as I was sure the plot was about to become as predictable as a campaign commercial, Jim does a sharp U turn and declares that he's "not that guy" and that they're "not that couple." Crisis averted. Every time the writers start inching around that plot, I get as jumpy as Dirk Diggler during his drug deal [NSFW].

-- That said, did anyone else think that Pam was being slightly annoying during her 6+ minute accidental voicemail? I know she's enjoying herself in New York and all, but, really, she's not 19, right?

-- I'm going to be honest with you: I would have bid on Creed.

-- We didn't talk about Michael and Holly much: what did you guys think of them getting together so fast? I, for one, loved it. They're even more interesting as a couple. Judging by the look on David Wallace's face, however, it appears that there's trouble ahead for them. Sigh. I guess you can't keep an Oscar nominee shackled on the small screen for more than a few episodes. (Would somebody please offer Amy Ryan a part in Medellín 2 so her film career tanks and she's forced to stay on The Office forever? Thanks.)

-- I was a little unsure what Dwight was trying to say by bidding on Phyllis for the hug. Was it a thank you? It was the only off moment of the episode for me.

-- There was a lot of acknowledgment of the camera crew tonight, and, indeed, more in this season than in any other. Are they building to something or is it just coincidence?

-- "She introduced me to so many things: pasteurized milk, sheets, monotheism, presents on your birthday, preventative medicine..."

-- "It squeaks when I bang it." The best "That's what she said" ever? Discuss.

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I was out of town for the last week or so, and watched the DVR recording of this episode last night. When Jim made his U-Turn, I was half expecting a cop to pull him over. With Jim having had a few drinks, I was really worried that he would get a DUI. I know that's pretty heavy stuff, but it could have added a really big wrinkle to the show, especially if Pam had found out (and the reason for him being in that particular location when he got the ticket).

October 30 2008 at 11:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Another small thing I caught on the second viewing:

When the "hug bidding" started, Andy bid $250:

Angela: What are you doing?!
Andy: I...need a hug, and I'm not sure that you're gonna give me one
Angela: Not *here* (emphasis)

The irony being we know that Angela's done far more than give a hug in the warehouse

October 25 2008 at 5:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Katie's comment

I didn't catch that...

October 26 2008 at 12:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Really good episode i can't believe nobody mentioned Ryan's reaction when Dave Wallace walked into the warehouse, and he tried to duck down I thought that was pretty funny and wanted them to explore it more. I also wanted more Daryl at the bar with Jim and Roy, I think there could have been some real comedy potential there.

October 25 2008 at 2:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ryan Holgado

Did anyone catch what Roy said to Jim that made him so nervous? He was sort of mumbling and it was hard to tell. It sounded like he said "I bet you were a friend," but that does not make sense, at least not to me.

October 24 2008 at 6:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Ryan Holgado's comment
Yme Sandelmann

Just short of a word: "I thought you were her friend!?". And I think it makes perfect sense. I am the jealous type of boyfriend and was actually thinking "I would've had the the exact same reaction. Thankfully Jim did a U-Turn. I'm afraid I would've done something different... :(

October 24 2008 at 7:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Jim said that Pam was having fun going out with her friends in NY, and Roy said, "I thought you were her friend." Jim freaks out a little, because she's his best friend, not just his fiancee--he doesn't want to think that their friendship is slipping away because he's being replaced by new friends.

October 24 2008 at 10:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The Jim/Pam thing is eerily close to my relationship with a former girlfriend... so I hope they have a happier ending then I did. :(

October 24 2008 at 2:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Well I'm from México and tequila sherbet is very common and good.

October 24 2008 at 1:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I gotta go with the best - and most beautiful - line of the night being while Phyllis is trying to console Dwight about the upcoming nuptials of Andy and Angela: "Angela's not really a risk taker. And Andy's not really a risk."


Also -- anyone remember the ridiculous acronym that CRIME AID stands for?

October 24 2008 at 12:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to sww's comment

Crime Reduces Innocence Makes Everyone Angry I Declare.

When we saw the banner come out, we were like, uh oh, what's with the periods...? Classic Michael

October 24 2008 at 12:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why were they having an auction? Doesn't Dunder Mifflin have insurance?

October 24 2008 at 11:39 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I had so many laugh-out-loud moments before the first commercial. And I really needed it after an awful day.

October 24 2008 at 11:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree with a poster above - Jim has really lacked character development in the last year. When he was with Karen, you saw him have drive and ambition to be more than a paper salesman. Now he's content to be Assistant to the Regional Manager so long as he's with Pam. There's nothing wrong with that in real life - but on a tv show, we need something more than the puppy dog following his girl.

also, I really think they will get married (Jam that is), but the dynamic of a married couple in the workplace is going to be their main storyline.

when she does come back, what will happen to Ryan?

October 24 2008 at 10:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to cdawg's comment

When you think about it, everything he has done in the show has been because of Pam. He went to CT because she shot him down and turned down the NYC job because of her. Jim is a three-dimensional guy: Basketball, Smirking and doing other facial expressions, and pining for Pam. That's about it.

October 24 2008 at 3:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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