Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Office, "Gossip": Parkour and recreation

Spoilers for "The Office" season six premiere coming up just as soon as I stop being polite and start getting real...
"It's like the end of 'Spartacus.' I have seen that movie half a dozen times, and I still don't know who the real Spartacus is. And that is what makes that movie a classic whodunnit."(*) -Michael Scott
(*)For those unfamiliar with "Spartacus," Michael is talking about one of the most famous scenes in movie history.)

Coming off arguably the best season of its run so far(**), "The Office" returns with an uneven but ultimately satisfying episode. Leaving aside the unrelated parkour opening(***), "Gossip" started off slowly, but it built and built as Michael's invented gossip began hitting home, and it all came together in a very funny, and kinda sweet, climax in the conference room.

(**) Straw poll: Season two (climaxing with Jim kissing Pam) or season five (Michael and Holly, followed by The Michael Scott Paper Company)? And can anyone make an argument for why seasons one, three or four should be in the discussion?

(***) This gives me an excuse to do the obligatory parkour YouTube links, including the "Casino Royale" scene Jim refers to, a chase scene from the all-parkour French action movie "District 13," and a collection of amateur parkour highlights. If you only have time for one, go with the "District 13" clip.

Now, this episode features Michael at his most juvenile and insecure, and your mileage will obviously vary on that. But I don't mind this Michael on occasion, particularly when he's used in service to hilarious bits like the "Spartacus" reference quoted above, or his complete inability - despite Jim and Pam's warning - to keep the secret from Stanley's wife.

And the gossip plot turned into a nice showcase for the entire cast, whether it was the usual 10-second brilliance of Creed ("If I can't scuba, then what is this all about? What have I been working toward?") to Dwight's weird hang-ups ("You told people that I use store-bought manure... when I showed you where my manure comes from?") to the more elaborate subplot about Andy's gay panic. That one wins points not only for a reference to Broccoli Rob (my favorite Here Comes Treble nickname), but for Oscar's exasperation at having to comfort freaked-out heterosexual men. Ed Helms is so wonderful, and fits in so well, that's it's weird to think that the show existed for two seasons without him.

And, as with Jim and Pam dating in season four, and being engaged in season five, we see that Jim and Pam as expectant parents are not going to get in the way of the laughs. If anything, their horror at exposing their unborn child to these lunatics has even more comic potential than their fear of being outed as a couple, I think.

So, not an instant classic, but a solid start to the season.

What did everybody else think?

75 comments:

Mark said...

Fun episode to start the season. Love that Michael spread a rumor that Toby is a virgin, even though he's got a daughter. Hope this show can keep going strong, even in season 6.

Lane said...

another great Creedism

when Jim & Pam admit that they are pregnant, someone (I think Kelly) blurts out "who's the father?", then Creed blurts out "who's the OBGYN??"

Lester Freamon said...

I liked that Michael's hare-brained scheme was basically a good idea and it worked too, at least as far as keeping the affair quiet in the office. My favorite episodes are the ones where Michael displays the skewed competence and social intelligence that got him as far as he did (but no further).

I'm going to miss the interns though. They had potential.

AJ Wiley said...

It was a decent start. I liked Andy thinking he might be gay--and having to seek validation from Michael that he wasn't--but it certainly wasn't a home run.

And, for me, season five was by far the weakest season. It was all over the place, and there were long stretches that simply weren't that great.

Brandon said...

Just want to join the straw poll: Season 2 by far.

In regards to Season 5, I think it's pretty overrated--though with obvious greatness that you mentioned. But the documentary conceit has never stretched further than last year, and worse, the characterization felt increasingly broad (Angela, Ryan, etc.). I know Dwight has always been the wacky one, but Season 5 pushed his credibility for me, given the love triangle mess and his weird betrayals of Michael. And I love Jim and Pam as much as the next guy, but they're not nearly as riveting a dramatic force as they were during the anxiety-ridden courtship of Season 2.

Anyway, I think Season 5 was mostly good, just constantly referred to as some renaissance whereas I find it more a case of diminishing returns.

Anonymous said...

Is it me, or did one of the interns look like a young Matt Damon?

Anonymous said...

I vote Season 5.

The Godfather said...

Anonymous 10:21pm:

My brother said the same thing while we were watching.

I laughed out loud quite a bit during this episode. Kinda hoped for a payoff with Michael keeping the secret from Teri on the phone to Lester's point that he is just competant enough to get by at the right times (like the first meeting with David Wallace when Michael and Jan's night of passion is exposed and he covers for her) but I imagine that single Stanley opens up some new stories.

Good episode, glad to have new episodes back on the air.

Shannon said...

Season 2 is far and away the best of The Office. It was near perfection, and I doubt it can be topped. That said, I still really enjoyed season 5, and, for that matter, every season before and between.

Mike said...

"Is it me, or did one of the interns look like a young Matt Damon?"

--Where have I seen that guy before?...it's driving me crazy... I can't find a guest star list anywhere

LB said...

I actually thought this was one of the best episodes in the history of the series. I tend to prefer the episodes that use the whole cast effectively (never was particular to the whole Jam thing or any couplings). The rumors Michael thought of? Brilliant! And I do like episodes that don't let Michael get away with his mistakes. The character is better for inducing both sympathy and cringing reactions (sometimes at the same time). Really great start to the season.

As for which season I prefered, Season 2 as a whole is better but the Michael Scott Paper Company and the Holly arc are my two favorite stories on this show. So I'd go for Season 5 (it doesn't hurt that season 5 has Andy, who is the best, and Season 2 didn't).

Linda said...

Season 2 was fresher, but Season 5 was richer. I would never be able to decide.

Good episode, I thought. Several lines that really made me laugh, including most of the rumors. I just love the evolution of Pam, who is so much more confident and so much older than she was six years ago, which completely makes sense. If she was late-twenties then, she'd be early-mid-thirties now; it's right that that feels a little different, especially with all the changes in her life. I always think it's creepy when people experience huge life events and never change.

CC said...

Great episode!

I thought he looked like Matt Damon too!! I've been searching for the credits but I can't find any. It's bugging me so bad! :S

Chris said...

I'm assuming the payoff of the fact the intern looked like Matt Damon was that Michael named him Alan Thicke.

eliza said...

(The Matt Damon-y intern was Felicity Huffman's son on Desperate Housewives.)

CC said...

Ah yes. After searching some more I found out who he was. Success! :)

Spot said...

I think season two wins because it was the only start-to-finish great season. The first half of season 3 and the second half of 5 (after we got past Dwight/Angela/Andy) were both really, really strong, but couldn't lift the weaker half up to season 2 levels.

This one, however, was a really good start to putting 6 in that discussion.

JJ said...

Season three was HILARIOUS! Jim being in Stamford with Karen and Andy was a great extremely funny, and with every building all the way to Beach Games and Jim and Pam ultimately getting together, I think that season was pitch-perfect.

Anonymous said...

I loved season 5, but think season 2 was Office perfection. I also thought the intern looked like Matt Damon, wondered why Michael called him Alan Thicke instead and, having read these comments, now wonder why I didn't realize, as commenter Chris did, that that could be the joke.

SteveInHouston said...

I enjoyed it a lot. I can never get enough of how deadpan Oscar Nunez is. His quietly mortified to Andy's fever daydream was tremendous.

Anyone else notice that Angela Kinsey was listed twice in the credits, and that Ellie Kemper wasn't listed at all? I think Kemper's agent will be making some calls tomorrow...

Anonymous said...

I truly believed that intern was Matt Damon's little brother. Nope. It was Max Carver. (You're welcome.)

domino87 said...

I vote season 5. It just kept surprising me by getting better and better, which is no small feat 5 seasons into a series. I'm hopeful season 6 will do the same.

Solid start to this season but as always I need more Creed!

On a side note, has there ever been a better 7day stretch for (actually good) Comedy premieres?

The Office
Parks and Rec (much improved)
Community (new)
Its Always Sunny
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Bored to Death (new)
How I Met Your Mother
The Big Bang Theory
The Modern Family (new)

Jim said...

I don't know why, but the bit that broke me up:

"I'm so glad you're eating again."

"Me too!"

Anonymous said...

I'll stick up for season 3 if no one else will. It expanded on the show's serialized elements and balanced the mundane with the absurd maybe better than any other season (I particularly love "Benjamin Franklin"). I also think that having Jim and Pam hook up and not make a huge deal about it was much more daring than having them kiss and then have nothing come of it (even though the resolutions of those storylines ran in to the next seasons, kind of messing up my argument).

I'd rank the seasons:
2=3
1=5
4

Though I think they're all at least quite good.

Brandon said...

Anonymous, Season 3 is my second favorite. It has an angry undercurrent that is surprisingly engaging and consistent given the stories (Jim, Pam & Karen, Dwight's temporary quitting, Michael and Jan).

But Season 2 is my favorite, a masterpiece of loneliness. The writers have never managed to capitalize on the simultaneous sweetness and sadness inherent in Michael, as with his Halloween coda or his childhood acting gig video. And as mentioned, Jim and Pam's courtship was utterly magnetic that year. I'd hate to see any contrived drama between them, but their story is necessarily less riveting without the urgency it had in Season 2 (and 3).

Number Five said...

I think the Michael incidents that are hardest to watch aren't necessarily his most juvenile, but the ones where he really hurts people's lives vs. just being really obnoxious - the "Phyllis's Wedding" theory. Helping to reveal Stanley's adultery is high up there, although we find out his wife suspected and it may not have been a secret forever. So that was a bit hard to take, but it was still very funny overall.

I loved that Michael's rumors were a combination of his biases and his ability to read people, resulting in some half-baked ones (Toby is a virgin) and some fairly accurate ones (Kelly has food issues). And I also loved how quickly Pam got to the bottom of the rumors. I agree with Linda, it has been great to see her grow more assertive as a over the seasons.

If the Alan Thicke/Matt Damon thing was supposed to be a joke (and it was certainly a rule of 3 punchline), it still felt odd because Michael's pop culture radar works the opposite way.

I agree that season 5 was great but nothing will match season 2's perfection. Seasons 1 and 3 are a bit underrated, but agree they are the weakest. I think season 4 would be in the discussion if the strike hadn't gotten in the way. The fall episodes plus Dinner Party form one of the show's greatest runs, including Dunder Mifflin Infinity, Michael's second job, the office-produced commercial, ending with the bleak but brilliant one-two punch of Jan's deposition and Michael's dinner party. Remove the rest of the post-strike episodes and it belongs up there with seasons 2 and 5.

f l said...

Instead of naming a favorite season, here's my favorite moment: When Ryan gets the job in corporate, turns to Kelly, and says, "You and I are through." Great season ender too.

LA said...

So good to have The Office back.

I'm with Lane, I died laughing when Creed asked "who's the OB/GYN?"

Oh, and I vote for season 5.

Anonymous said...

Please, somebody help me with this: Stanley begs Michael not to tell anyone about his affair, but he has nothing to say to THE CAMERAMAN FROM THE DOCUMENTARY CREW STANDING ABOUT FIVE FEET FROM HIS HEAD? Does anyone else think the documentary conceit has been streched beyond the breaking point?

belinda said...

I think Season 5 gets my vote. Though season 2 was their breakout year, and them finally figuring out how to do the show outside of the UK Office universe, season five was probably the all round more solid season.

i thought it was a lukewarm opener. Cute, some funny lines, but a bit of a weak story. The interns were a nice touch though - loved the end credits scene.

jasctt said...

wasn't thrilled with this ep. Obviously, the Andy/gay thing is stupid and if it goes beyond this ep, then it is a sign of the shark.

Still, despite the stupidity of this ep, I got to say that the PB&J stuff is great and works so well. they really arethe only normal folks on the show.

though, Michael explaining Stanley's affair to Kevin via Hangman was pretty inspired.

Did anyone else catch BJ "I sucked in INglorious Bastards and everything I do but this show" Novak inserted into that group shot? So is that how thye are going to do him for a bit? Just random pick up shots to show he is supposed to be there? That's already annying me.

Anonymous said...

Well, BJ Novak is a writer and producer of The Office, so I don't think its how "they are going to do him" - he isn't exactly a bit player here.

JK said...

I agree with the previous commenters who vote Season 3 as the best. Season 2 is where the show found its voice but Season 3 is where it all came together. I started listing all of the great storylines from the season, but I stopped since there were too many. But, really, has there been a better sentimental moment on the show than in the season finale of Season 3 when Jim interrupts Pam's interview and asks her out? And has there been a funnier moment than when Michael tries to kiss Oscar in the season opener (which was totally unscripted meaning that many of the casts' reactions were genuine)? I still vote the season premiere of that season as the funniest Office of all time. So I will make the case for Season 3 as the best. I actually think it is far and away the best.

Jake said...

I definitely vote for Season 2. It had pathos, sweetness, interesting characterization, and it all worked within the docu format. Season 5 had all those things as well, but sometimes it stretched things too far (Dwight giving someone a heart attack and getting off scot-free), though its looseness with the documentary style didn't bother as much as it did others.

As for this episode, I loved Andy's insecurity and Oscar's complete refusal to reassure him of his heterosexuality, Creed's bits and, as always, the Jim/Pam dynamic that I somehow never tire of despite my cynical nature. But I thought Michael's actions were too dark for him to cast off so lightly. I mean, he's smart enough to realize that he possibly ruined the life of a man who already has heart and stress issues, and even if it is Stanley's fault for cheating it made no sense for Michael to sound so chipper in that last talking head. Overall, though, they got some good laughs out of Michael's rumors, even if I thought the episode was a mixed bag overall.

bsangs said...

Season 2. Season 5 shouldn't even be allowed in the same room.

Pretty good start last night. FWIW, I'm pretty sure those are the most lines Stanley has ever uttered in a single episode!

The post-credits intern bit was wonderful.

Craig said...

Season 5 was the worst season of the bunch. It got too caught up in relationships instead of the office politics, which is why this show is funny in the first place. I came back to the show with trepidation and was rewarded greatly with last night's episode. Keep the sweetness out of it and just give me wackiness for a half hour. Is that too much to ask?

Anonymous said...

Great episode. I laughed out loud a number of times. Primarily during Poor Andy's confusion ("the evidence is stacked against me...") and then the line where Michael - after years and years of sales calls and then middle management - realizes for the first time that people say they are going on sales calls to do personal business. That's classic Office stuff right there - the stuff that happens in real offices with clueless bosses on a daily basis.

Weck said...

I think Season 3 wins out over Season 2 because of the seamless transition after Ed Helms joined the cast.

Plus there's a ton of awesome episodes that season:

- Gay Witch Hunt (Michael kisses Oscar)
- The Negotiation (Dwight maces Roy, Michael wears a woman's suit)
- A Benihana Christmas (Michael marks the waitress' arm to identify her from the other)
- Back from Vacation (jamaicanjansunprincess.jpg)
- Traveling Salesmen (Jim slaps Dwight)
- The Return (cell phone in ceiling, Andy punches wall, Dwight at Staples, Oscar's Mexican celebration)
- Business School (candy bar speech, bat in the office)
- Product Recall (Andy's HS girlfriend)
- The Job (Jim pulls the trigger on Pam)

... and so many more. Season 3 in a landslide!!

Mike C said...

I agree with Linda's comment that "Season 2 was fresher, but Season 5 was richer", but to me Season 5 was also funnier. And that puts it over the top.

Bryan said...

very funny - one of the better season openers I thought.

I loved Michael's reaction in the car with Stanley. He was so befuddled that he was wrong about the affair he couldn't grasp Stanley had lied to him - it was a vintage Michael momment I think - you can just see the wheels frantically turning but getting nowhere.

What was it Angela said to Pam? - "even if you get married it's still a bastard"

Peruvian Idol said...

I loved Dwight's scene with the interns where he says something to the effect of, "one of you will excel in business, one of you will just make a living and one of you will be a mom. It's up to you to decide which."

digamma said...

"Does anyone else think the documentary conceit has been streched beyond the breaking point?"

I thought it was abandoned for good during Phyllis's wedding when her senile uncle was "missing" except that a camera followed him the whole time.

The BBC Office was pretty faithful to the pretense the whole time. Tim acknowledged his embarrassment at having been rejected on national TV. The climactic moment of Season 2 was inaudible to us because Tim had torn off his microphone.

Whatever, NBC's Office is still a great show. It's just not a mockumentary anymore.

54cermak said...

Surprised there is so much Season 5 love. It finished strong, but the first 2/3rds were an absolute mess.

I loved last night's episode and hope that the show is finally back on solid ground again.

For me S2 is the best with S3 a close 2nd.

Anonymous said...

Watching the parkour clips reminded me of the best parkour scene in a sitcom (before this sport was even invented): Kramer running from the cable guy through the city and over the rooftops!

Alan Sepinwall said...

Surprised there is so much Season 5 love. It finished strong, but the first 2/3rds were an absolute mess.

The first part of the season featured Michael and Holly, and Oscar and Andy's business trip, and the surplus argument, and Meredith's intervention, etc.

Plus... "Boom! Roasted."

karenX said...

Season 4 is the worst, for being utterly, entirely forgettable. I don't remember a thing about it. Season 5 had stories we didn't like but can refer to and everyone recognizes.

Hannah Lee said...

I thought this was a good opener, with the parkour scenes (and Jim’s related commentary), even though I was cringing through most of Michael’s interaction with the interns.

And while I agree with this:
The post-credits intern bit was wonderful.

I don’t agree with this:
I'm going to miss the interns though. They had potential.

I’m glad they’re not sticking around as things seemed to grind to a halt when they were onscreen, even if there were funny moments.

I loved Michael's reaction in the car with Stanley. He was so befuddled that he was wrong about the affair he couldn't grasp Stanley had lied to him - it was a vintage Michael momment I think - you can just see the wheels frantically turning but getting nowhere.

Bryan, this is so true; that was one of my favorite bits in the whole episode. Just one of the many cases in this episode where his mouth and brain were running at different speeds and on different wavelenths. “Hello Cynthia!...oops”

Angela accosting Pam about the baby was so horrible, so wrong and yet so funny all at the same time.

meg4fancast said...

I liked it! It needed more Kelly though. And we need Ryan back too. I'm a little sick of Andy. I am so excited it's back. If anybody missed it, you can catch it on Fancast.

srpad said...

I would call this episode "pretty good." A nice start to the season with a great deal of laughs but not a classic. My favorite momment was the minute I heard "Parkour", I was like, "What is this 2005?" and a few second later, Jim calls it "The internet sensation from 2004." Loved it!

Also I saw the box being empty a mile away and laughed anyway. Glad this show is back!

C. Joseph said...

Straw poll answer:

Season two, and it's not close. Season five was tired and uninteresting. "The Office" became a much more conventional show after its third season, and while it's still amusing, it hasn't been compelling television in years.

Also, it was good to see you around BaseballThinkfactory.

Jonathan B. said...

The post-strike stretch of season 4 was probvably my favorite part of the series, between "Dinner Party," Did I Stutter?" and "Goodbye Toby" (Probably my favorite finale of the show). Alas, pre-strike I could barely stand the show, so I'd rank the rest of the seasons (Sans 1) above it. Season 5 would be my favorite though, mostly because by then they had learned to utilize the entire cast, to great results (The Hilary Swank debate, "Cafe Disco" - possibly my favorite episode of the series).

And last night was good. Not GREAT, but it gave everyone their moment to shine, which with only 21 minutes is amazing with a cast of over a dozen (Plus the three interns).

Anonymous said...

Season 2 by far. Season 5 was good but vastly overrated by the Holly lovers.

Great start for Season 6.

Anonymous said...

The most interesting sequence last night had Michael trying to flee the office after everyone realized he was responsible for the false rumors, and without physically restraining him, the staff made it clear that he was through with them if he cut and ran--and it's clear Michael actually gets this, and he's able to return and somehow/sort of resolve the overall situation (if not the one with Stanley).
I do hope that Stanley doesn't end up focusing all of his future hate on Michael over the affair being found (analogous to how Michael turns all of his frustration and anger on Toby) because whatever Michael did or didn't do, the affair and its consequences are 100% on Stanley.
Re: earlier seasons. Season 4 could never have felt even because the WGA strike caused such a long delay between the turning point episodes "The Deposition" and "Dinner Party". However, anyone who thinks a year that included "Money", "The Chair Model" and "Goodbye Toby" isn't a good year, I don't understand that.
The best seasons are 2 and 5.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't thrilled with this one.

Something seemed off, and I believe it was Michael's utter callousness re Stanley's situation.

I understand that Michael is completely clueless, but he is not cruel. But after being explicitly *told* that this could ruin Stanley's life, he proceeds to fix things... and then stabs Stanley in the heart again.

That does not compute.

The rest of the show showcased the usual sharp writing and effortless acting, but Michael's "cruelty" left me with a something of a sour taste...

AmericanPatriot said...

If they were to ever make a spin-off of The Office as was rumored last year (and turned into P&R, a show I'm still not impressed with), it should star Creed. The man is comic gold! Every episode he doesn't get a quality appearance is a lost opportunity! More Creed!!!!

Imamarilyn said...

This was a very good, but not great, episode. I enjoyed having the whole cast involved. This show is so much more than Michael. Dwight is by far my favorite character, but I really like episodes where we get to see the talents of the other people so often in the background.

My favorite part: When Andy asked Michael, "Am I gay?" Loved it!

srpad said...

I wanted to add a great big thank you to NBC for having the advertising bug for Leno up the entire show. Taking your cue from second tier cable channels and their annoying bugs is not the way out of fourth place.

MikeS said...

I was totally going to call season 5 my favorite, but Weck's list above sold me on Season 3.

I knew the refrigerator box was going to be empty and Andy was going to fall right through, but when it happened, I laughed anyway.

Mike said...

Thank. You. Eliza!!

Billiam said...

As much as I loved season 2, it did have some flaws: most notably the fact that it took awhile to flesh out the supporting cast (especially Kelly) and to introduce the Dwight/Angela and Ryan/Kelly pairings. The last half though was amazing...

TwotoTenth said...

60 comments in, and no mention of my favorite part of the episode: "Who's been saying that there's another person inside me, working me with controls?" I particularly love the fact that Kevin is so bothered by this rumor that he insists it be the one they track down.

Anonymous said...

A good, but not great, season opener. As for the best season of the show, how can Season 2 be beat? Season 3 started well, but then dragged out the Jim/Pam story too long. Season 5 had its moments, but too many dead spots to contend for the top spot. Seasons 1 and 4 get an incomplete.

Ostiose Vagrant said...

hey, all this matt damon stuff, what about the girl? She looks like Sofia Coppola.

Savvy Veteran said...

I really liked the episode. The Parkour thing worked for me as a standalone cold open, and the rest was pretty much exactly what I expect from a solid episode of The Office. I thought it was a little weird that Stanley would dignify Michael's accusations with such honesty and openness--given his clear hatred for the man--although I can understand that being in a difficult emotional place could cause him to react differently when confronted in such a manner. Still a little strange though.

And re: the 2 v. 5 question...Definitely season 2. Season 5 was great, to be sure--the Michael/Holly stuff was awesome, and I wished that the The Michael Scott Paper Company arc would never end--but just around the middle point of the season, there's about 4 or 5 bad episodes (by my estimation anyway).

Seriously, for a few weeks, I was worried that I didn't like The Office anymore. 21-22/26 ain't bad, though, but it's that one troubling stretch that keeps me from saying 5 was better than the practically perfect season 2.

Sonia said...

So many great little bits in this season's opener -- Andy going through the refrigerator box (I love a good sight gag...it was hilarious, but not as funny as the cat being tossed into the ceiling); Kevin giggling (and jiggling while he giggles) at Andy in the break room; Kelly crying to the interns during the voiceovers; Michale's complete inability to call Satnley's wife by her proper name, Terri; and finally, Jim putting the sonogram photo on his desk, and Pam smiling with such emotion at that small act of love. Any episode that ends with Pam smiling like that is OK by me.

J.J. said...

Season 2 was better than Season 5 for me, because I enjoyed Jim's angst (over Pam) more than I enjoyed Michael's (over Holly).

Season 5 was a little weird for me because part of the joke of Michael's character is the way he has nothing interesting going on, yet he keeps acting as if the documentary is some kind of star vehicle for him. With the whole Holly story suddenly Michael had some meaty, compelling stuff happening.

I also didn't like the way season 5 had a handful of "satisfying" Jim/Pam moments on-camera. What happened to the Jim from earlier seasons who seemed to make efforts to not pour his personal life out for the documentary crew to see? Jim used to almost be an observer, but it feels more and more like Jim is getting sucked into performing and staging moments for the cameras.

That's just my take, though.

Anonymous said...

the straw poll: Season 2 by far.

Anonymous said...

For the straw poll, season 2. I prefer season 3, with season 4 being so bad as to almost turn me off from the show.

7s Tim said...

I loved the Alan Thicke line mostly because Thicke is most know for Growing Pains, a show that premiered, most likely, before the intern was born. Way to go
Michael. way to go.

Anonymous said...

Put me down for season 3. I loved the introduction of a whole new office, then the merger, and how one by one, Micheal got all the Standford employees to quit. Comedy gold.

Anonymous said...

I really didn't like this episode at all. Minus a few of the nice touches by Ed Helms that I've come to expect, this episode did not even bring a chuckle for me. However, the overwhelming majority of positive comments here seem to indicate that it was maybe my personal tastes more than the actual episode being weak.

I still get a sinking feeling about the future of the series. It showed a few signs of slowing down during last season's uneven batch of episodes. Several of the episodes were some of the best in the entire run of the series--a handful of others were some of the worst. If this opener is any indication, I am afraid this season will be full of the latter. I hope I'm wrong.

Steve said...

I think Season Two was the best, but I don't want to say it because it would sleight Ed Helms who has been fantastic on the show.

But in terms of the greatest moment in The Office, and perhaps the hardest I've ever laughed while watching television, the answer is from Season Five. The first ten minutes of the episode after the Super Bowl was a masterclass in comedy.

Anonymous said...

Can someone help? I did not get why Creed asking "Who is the OBGYN?" was funny; I'm most certainly missing something. Help! Is he just being his usual pervy self or is there something more?

Dan_Scriptomatic_Cinematic_Telematic said...

I know I'm late to this party (for anyone who blogs about TV, you know the frustration at trying to hit every blog about your favorite show, then finding a good one too late to get any reactions to your comments!) but hey, if anyone's still here, I loved this review and pulled some fun screen captures, if you're interested...
http://wp.me/pCufw-3N

Anonymous said...

Of course, calling carver "Alan Thicke" was the punchline, when he so much resembles Damon.
The girl certainly doesn't look like Julia Stiles either, so the line is just there so we are even more appalled by Michael's shortsightedness here (Julia Stiles co-stared with Damon in all three Bourne episodes)