Monday, December 13, 2010

What I’m Watching: The Office

The Office: Season 7, Episodes 11 & 12 “Classy Christmas” (B+)

The very week that “In Treatment” comes to an end, we get Amy Ryan back on this show, which is an absolute delight. Her amazing, dorky chemistry with Michael immediately returns, and it’s fun to watch the rest of the office stare in shock at just how alike the two are. Unfortunately, Michael manages to blow it early on by trashing Woody and then talking about the kids he’d have with Holly in front of the whole office, but he did a surprisingly impressive job of bringing it all back together by episode’s end. Having AJ come in and not giving him a hard time was nice, and he also does raise an unusually valid point: that Holly wasn’t willing to do long-distance for him but has no problem doing it with AJ. I loved seeing Kelly’s mouth drop when she heard Holly and AJ returning to Holly’s neighboring cube, and it’s a good sign that Holly didn’t tell AJ the truth about what happened to poor Woody. Seeing Darryl’s daughter and the lengths that Pam, Andy, and eventually Michael went to in order to give her a great holiday was endearing, and she wasn’t the only welcome guest to the party. Angela’s boyfriend, dryly played by Jack Coleman of “Heroes,” was entertaining, not least of all because Oscar was so sure he was gay. Pam’s comic book was a brilliant gift, and it’s too bad no one seemed to be impressed since Jim absolutely loved it. Of course, Jim had his own problems to deal with in this episode as a snowball thrown in the office at Dwight resulted in some pretty horrendous payback. A fine, funny holiday episode this is.

Since I was watching this live, I do have to note that I saw my first preview for NBC’s all-new, three-hour comedy lineup coming in January. I was extremely impressed by the advertisement, and I’m very excited. One of Andy’s lines from “Parks and Recreation” had me cracking up for a good portion of the episode: “I looked up your symptoms online, and it says you have network connectivity problems.” I can’t wait for that show to be back, and right after this one is the best spot it could possibly have.

1 comment:

Greg Boyd said...

I actually shut this episode off when Michael made that "our kids" remark. I'm so glad I decided to finish that scene rather than skipping over it on Hulu: the entire office siding with Michael (although I personally thought his arguments didn't hold much weight since Holly's been with A.J. for quite a while compared to him) was a delightful moment. There were also so many great throwaway lines as well. My favorite: Oscar's "why would anyone want to hug you?" to Andy. I can see why some people thought the Dwight snowball stuff crossed the line from funny to disturbing, but it didn't bother me. It's just a TV show, and in all honesty Jim's had something like this coming to him for a long time. I just loved every minute of this one, and I think it's probably in my top five "Office" episodes of all-time (along with the season 3 Christmas episode, "Product Recall", "Beach Games", and of course "Dinner Party").

Funny you should mention "Parks and Recreation". I just finished the second season this morning (after watching like 20 episodes over the weekend), and it is so good. I just cannot wait to start watching that show on a weekly basis come January, and the fact that "The Office" appears to have some life left in it means that I now have two terrific comedy shows to watch back-to-back. Maybe I'll check out "Community" at some point, too. Or get back into "30 Rock" (which I dropped during season 3 for no particular reason, despite it still being funny). Probably not, though, since I'm venturing into "Lost" right now.