I say this because, even though some of what Michael did in this episode would be deemed wildly inappropriate in any office, he had a reason for it. And, compared to some of the embarrassments Michael has perpetrated within the walls of Dunder Mifflin Scranton, misinterpreting the signals from a bar manager is way, way down on the list. Remember, this is a guy who held a teenage pizza delivery guy hostage.
But it did make for a pretty funny episode. Even Dwight's Schrute-ish shenanigans weren't even all that annoying, especially because it's always funny to see his schemes backfire on him.
(S06E20) If you took this episode and dropped it in the middle of season two or three, it probably would have fit in nicely. Well, except for the fact that you might be asking why Pam was on maternity leave (and why Jim is the dad), why Andy is working in Scranton, and just who the hell Erin is.
But you know what I'm getting at. The tone, pacing, and comedy of this episode continues the recent trend of 'The Office' getting back to what made people love it to begin with. And, yes, part of that means that Michael is going to make an ass of himself. But at least the season six version of Michael somehow gets a little bit of hope mixed in with his desperation stew.
With sales being king at Sabre, the sales staff was letting their elevated status go to their heads. This brings about some interesting character aspects we haven't seen much of. Phyllis, for instance, gets to take her status out on Michael, who's embarrassed her any number of times, and Angela, who she just plain hates. Andy walks out of a tedious Michael-called meeting. Stanley actually looks like he's doing work. It's amazing how a high commission can motivate even the most sedentary salesperson, huh?
But Michael's petulance had a purpose. Dunder Mifflin is in trouble. Office morale is at an all-time low. So, while Michael was still acting like a baby, he was doing it because he wanted to be the one to lift everyone's spirits. Still, it's funny to watch childish Michael, especially when we can see big ol' Kevin act indecisive while crushing Michael's lap.
I loved seeing Phyllis as Santa. She's right; she has the temperament, the figure, and she's got bad-ass Bob Vance to back her up in case anyone objects. And to think, at one time Phyllis Smith was a cheerleader for the NFL's St. Louis Cardinals.
You really, really wanted to see him pull a plan out of that savantish mind of his that would have saved Dunder Mifflin. At least I did. But, thankfully for the show's writers, that was never going to happen.
The interesting thing about this episode, though? The shareholders meeting plot was just OK. What I really wanted to see was more of Jim devising ways to assert his authority around the office. That was much funnier, and it was a small reminder of what attracted people to the show to begin with: small, real-life situations everyone who's ever sat in a cubicle could relate to.
Well, it wasn't. It was more than just a post-wedding letdown; it was one of the worst episodes in a couple of years. Why? Mainly because the entire episode was built around a silly misunderstanding that could have been cleared up in a few minutes. And this time, it wasn't even Michael's fault!
Nope, that's been the beauty of the Jam pairing from the minute they got together; they just continue being a solid couple in the background while the craziness spins around them. Even when one of them gets sucked into the craziness -- Pam defecting to the Michael Scott Paper Company, Jim becoming co-manager -- the pairing is still solid.
That's what made this hour-long wedding episode so enjoyable. It wasn't the fact that Pam and Jim got married, it's that they had a memorable, very PB & J-style wedding despite the presence of the crew from Scranton.
There's plenty of homegrown look-at-me content on YouTube, but every once in a while, there's that rare find that makes your work day a little bit brighter.
For fans of 'The Office,' the latest mash-up -- set to the tune of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start the Fire' -- is a must-watch. It cleverly recaps classic and more recent moments, from the kidnapped pizza delivery kid and Andy's bloody fun run nipples to the toaster oven incident-turned-catchy refrain "Ryan started the fire."
Could you watch Michael Scott dance on the booze cruise all day? Are you Scrantonicity's biggest fan? And how much is a Schrute Buck really worth? Watch. Giggle. Enjoy.
The facts are these: In The Office webisodes that have been airing over the past couple of weeks, Oscar has been pissed. He showed up to work and had an outburst on his cell phone in front of everyone. It sounded like a lovers' quarrel, but Oscar refused to tell anyone what he was so angry about.
Oscar has always seemed like one of the more intelligent, reasonable Dunder-Mifflin employees, so I find it completely mind-boggling that he thinks he can scream at someone in the middle of his crowded office, not tell anyone what the deal was, and expect them to respect his privacy. He works in an office. These people have nothing else going on in their lives.
In this week's webisode, the Dunder-Mifflin employees beat it out of him and we finally find out what the deal is with Oscar's outburst.
Ah, office gossip. It's kind of the best. Everybody knows that office jobs are soul-crushing endeavors, so it's imperative that you find something constructive on which to focus. That thing may be your job, but let's face it: it's probably not. Instead, it becomes the lives of those around you. People who, if you had your choice, you would never speak to, much less get involved in their lives, yet you end up spending more time with them than you do your own family.
In the first of The Office's new webisodes, Oscar gave his co-workers the gift of gossip when he was caught screaming at someone on the phone. In fairness, when you're on a cell phone and you're yelling in the middle of a crowded office, you kind of lose your expectation of privacy. Oscar, however, does not see it that way. He refused to explain himself, which naturally makes everyone all the more interested. This week, the investigation into Oscar's freakout continues.
In this series, called "The Outburst," everyone in the office overhears a very angry Oscar yelling at someone over the phone. Of course, his coworkers do what they would do in that office, or in any other office in the world: they spend the rest of the day obsessing over the phone call and trying to find out what it was about.
Watch the first of "The Outburst" videos after the jump.
As always, The Office manages to weave slapstick humor brilliantly with moments of raw emotion and pathos. Particularly, again, with a wonderful performance by Steve Carell. With most of the action centering on the major storylines, we didn't get much work out of the supporting cast, so it was at least good to see them having some costume fun in the cold open. Don't forget the rest of the cast, writers, we love them all!
Yesterday I had the opportunity to participate in a conference call with Mindy Kaling and Brian Baumgartner (Kevin) as they discussed the webisodes, Office Games, friendly competition and the status of a few MIA Dunder Mifflin employees.
Following Reno 911! and the canceled Dog Bites Man comes yet another improvised comedy series for Comedy Central: Halfway Home. The new series stars Oscar Nunez, Jordan Black, Kevin Ruf, Regan Burns, Jessica Makinson and Octavia Spencer as residents of a halfway house who are trying to straighten themselves out, and not doing a very good job of it. Nunez and Ruf also serve as executive producers.
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