I'm not sure where to start with this marvelous episode. So much disturbing imagery: Michael as a schoolgirl (no wonder Jan didn't seem disturbed that time he accidentally cross-dressed), the realization that Dwight "plays" with dolls while Angela frequently wears doll clothes, the idea of Dwight with a menstrual cycle (which would, in fairness, make him more linked to the moon and tides), Dwight taking a penile self-portrait... sick brilliance all.
This was another one of those episodes where Michael spends the first half making a complete ass of himself and by the end has everyone feeling sorry for him, as well as another one that somehow managed to make Michael's love life into a metaphor for Jim's. (Not that Jim was aware of it this time, but his reaction to Pam's sex predator poster is yet another clear sign that he and she are heading back towards each other.) Yet even when Michael's an object of pity, he's still being Michael, in this case buying the women sexy lingerie (or fuzzy robes) and breaking up with Jan on voicemail. (Under ordinary circumstances, I would lament the fact that he screwed up his chance for break-up sex, but given what we've learned, he's probably better off.) And yet even when he's being Michael (while also being an object of pity), he can be surprisingly wise, as in his "Wizard of Oz" list of wishes he made for the ladies.
Some other thoughts:
- Meredith speaks! And not just about being a boozer! It's hard out here for a Meredith fan sometimes, but this is the most she's had to do in an episode in, like, ever, and maybe the writers can do something with her sloppiness even outside her van (and her rules).
- An all-time great Pam talking head: "I don't often miss Roy, but I can tell you one thing: I wish someone had flashed me when I was with Roy, because that would have been the ass-kicking of the year. Especially if it had been Jim... He would not have wanted me to have seen Jim's... Hoo, I am saying a lot of things."
- Of course Creed's a flasher. Yet he seemed oddly whiny and childlike while defending his lady's room visit: "I'm a pretty normal guy, I have one weird thing: I like to go in the women's room for number two!" I think it was the shouting over the headphones that made that work as well as it did.
- And of course Angela blames the victim in the flashing incident, especially since the victim was her designated punching bag Phyllis.
- "Foliage." Who thought of that one: Michael or Jan?
- Dwight's vampire-killing broom returns!
- Getting back to the pre-Jan discussion of Michael as 40-Year-Old Virgin, I think Dwight says (with a mouth full of banana, so it's not clear) that Michael's had sex with "less than three" women, and then Michael insists that that info is "not current." So Jan makes it three? Carol and Jan make three and four? And why do I want to know this? Why am I still typing? Let's move on to the next bullet, please.
- Ryan being that in denial about Kelly doesn't really track with how open he's been about their relationship, particularly the Netflix bet in the safety training episode.
- Michael's con list for Jan includes both "Breasts, not anything to write home about" and "flat-chested."
- I love whenever Jim takes advantage of Dwight's love of official protocol, particularly whenever he gets Dwight to talk on the phone when there's no need to, whether it was in the tag here or the time he put Dwight's desk in the bathroom. (The men's room. There wouldn't have been space for his desk in the oasis that is the lady's room.)