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March 23, 2010

Season 2 Episode 2 Appraisals

The fact that I have not slept for more than three hours consecutively in the past two weeks might be impacting the generally negative opinion that I’ve started having about the office, but I really don’t
think that’s it. I was as awake as I’ve been getting on Sunday afternoons nowadays, I had a whole supper grandee (or however you say humongous in Starbucksies) black tea in me and I had just finished a pretty interesting class on memory formation, when I sat down to watch this episode. I’ll admit that since episode six of season one my Office experience is not what it originally was. Don’t get me wrong the shows are still enormously funny, but so are a million different TV shows, hell I can even get a laugh watching seventh heaven (when I’m feeling extremely depressed), but The Office was more than that. The Office was funny without being a TV show, it was a day in the office exposed and I loved it. Sadly this is no longer the case.

There still are the spoofs mind-numbingly stupid practices of the corporate world but it feels like that was all relegated to background noise. The appraisals are the quintessential example of office stupidity and in classic Office humor David polarizes how these reports are only a means to inflate a supervisor’s already overly inflated ego. I particularly enjoyed Gareth’s mishandling of the party line that all offices put up “these reports are not to see who is doing badly, just to let us know how the company can better serve our employees.”  So Gareth’s “to separate the chaff from the wheat” line was actually very entertaining in The Office way.

However, the show seems to have moved away from Mockumentary of a day at the office warts and all, too classic TV sitcom in the framework of an office Mockumentary. For me it was kind of like Studio Sixty on the Sunset Strip, at first I thought it was quite possibly the best show ever to air, but then as the show’s ratings slipped all these addled love stories and nonsensical sitcom situations (like sending a fox after a ferret after a snake down a hole under the stage?!?) got added to the show until it became a Frankenstein monster instead of the best show I’d ever seen. What was unique about The Office was there was no melodramatic story line all it was is a day at the office no starting point or end point there was no need for the script writers to get to someplace it was when the day is over turn the lights off and go home. Now there are love interests and love triangles that just feel so scripted you lose the brilliant little lines like Sidney Poitier, in the story the show is now trying to tell.

#$%@ 3.5


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