Since it's a slow day with no new column and no TV from last night to comment on (thank God for "The O.C." tonight, or I'd have no new episodes to blog about for quite a while), I wanted to throw out a thought that's been rattling around in my head since my interview last week with Ricky Gervais.
We were talking about the documentary framing of "The Office" and how the camera crew no doubt brought out the worst in David Brent, and Gervais said that David was too naive and fame-hungry to realize the filmmakers would only include his bad moments.
"So, wait," I asked, stunned. "Does that mean David had good moments that didn't make final cut?"
"Absolutely," he said.
"Like, there were times when he successfully told jokes that other people found funny?"
This sent my mind spinning, to the point where I'm not sure what we talked about for the rest of the hour. (God bless digital recorders.) When I watch a real documentary or reality show, it's with the understanding that the filmmakers/producers are shaping events to tell the story they want to, but it never for a second occurred to me that what we were seeing with "The Office" was anything but an objective view of David's life. Now, I feel like I need to go back and watch the entire British series to reimagine what David -- or Gareth, or Tim, or even Keith -- must have been doing right in between the scenes that made final cut.
I haven't had a chance yet to ask Greg Daniels if he views his show the same way (UPDATE: check the comments for some Greg thoughts), but just as an exercise, what aspects of characters from either show could you imagine being dropped from the documentary episodes?