Category Archives: Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam

Goodbye Ann Perkins, We Hardly Knew Ye AKA What Do You Do With a Problem Like Rashida?

Three weeks ago sources revealed that Rashida Jones and Rob Lowe would be leaving Parks and Recreation midway through its upcoming sixth season. News about the impending departure of unlucky in love Ann Perkins and perfectionist City Manager Chris Traeger was expectedly met with some sadness and disappointment by devoted Parks and Rec fans. The cast of the NBC comedy has developed into one of the strongest ensembles on television, and, with the exit of The Office and 30 Rock last season, Parks and Rec is poised to be NBC’s number one workplace comedy, with the citizens of Pawnee providing the most colorful and entertaining array of recurring characters and bit parts this side of Greendale Community College. Losing two main cast members is a bit of surprise, a curious altering of a formula that seemed to be working so well. But here’s the thing: we actual welcome the change, as it will solve the show’s most glaring problem, a significant flaw that has existed since episode one: what do you do with a problem like Rashida?

More: On not keeping up with the Jones

Leave a comment

Filed under Analysis, Be careful what you wish for, Better Late Than Never, Count Bleh, Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Must Flee TV, Must See TV, Yasmine Bleeth

Branch Closing – A Farewell to ‘The Office’

We very clearly remember the moment that we fell for The Office, the NBC stalwart that closes up shop at Dunder Mifflin tonight after nine mostly great seasons. It was the fall of 2005, when The Office was starting to find its legs after a rocky and uneven six episode first season, and we in our first autumn post-college, back at our parents’, and for the first time since we were four-years-old not attending school. We were at our best friend and future roommate’s house, hanging out, maybe barbecuing, maybe drinking a few beers, maybe watching the first season of Lost on DVD, which dominated much of our time (and thoughts) during that period. We knew about the The Office, another blatant attempt to import a UK hit stateside, but missed its brief run earlier that year, as was the case with the aforementioned Lost, as the only shows we watched religiously during our final year of college (and last few months before true adulthood) were The Simpsons and Survivor. We did, however, recall reading that it was an imperfect translation of the original, and the Steve Carell-led vehicle – who was then best known as the other Steve from The Daily Show –  was not likely to resurrect NBC Thursday night Must See TV, let alone make it past Season 2. So with the middling reviews in mind, and the fact that we were unfamiliar with the original Ricky Gervais version, we didn’t go out of our way to watch the show. But that night changed everything.

More: But that was just the beginning…

Leave a comment

Filed under Across the pond, Back to the Past, Brilliance, Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Freak Out Control, Good Humor, Is That Still On?, LOST, Must Flee TV, Must See TV

Quick Check: Is Jimmy Fallon Still Killing It?

Just one of our routine check-ins to see if Jimmy Fallon and Late Night are still killing, just in case you were concerned they were getting cocky or complacent after being named The Tonight Show successors. Let’s take a look.

Nope. Still killing it. Good job, guys. Everyone on the floor as well. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Good Humor, Mancrush, Talkies

Let’s Go For a Ride: ‘Community’ Continuity

Late at night last week we were absent-mindedly watching a rerun of The Office (“The Delivery, Part 2“), which is something we don’t often do. However, our decision paid  dividends when something caught our eye during a commercial break, an apparent allusion to another NBC Thursday Night comedy. Thirteen seconds into a Honda Accord  spot featuring two preternaturally mature, Wes Anderson-esque children, we just barely noticed the distinct markings of a potato chip brand recently featured on Community, that being the preferred chip of Troy, Let’s.

A couple enhanced screenshots:

Let's Chips Zoom1

Let's Chips Zoom2

Let’s Chips has actually popped up several times in the show, including in Season 4 when it was reviewed during the end credits tag by Greendale’s foremost  nonagenarian and Korean War Vet (North Korean side), Leonard. The verdict was a firm “Buy,” advice that was clearly heeded by Dean Pelton and Troy. Britta, however, insists on sticking with her far inferior “Spwingles” brand chips, driving a potentially insurmountable wedge between her and Troy.

So what gives? Is this a wink to Community? A subliminal message intended to subvert viewers into watching the show against their will, thereby giving the series hope for a fifth season? Or has the Community soundstage already been shut down and dismantled, the props sold off to highest car commercial bidder? Should we expect to see Yard-Margs from Skeepers in an Daewoo commercial?

Or, perhaps, this a clue, an easter egg, showing that the world of Greendale is far greater than we ever imagined. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Conspiracy Theory, Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Greendale Human, Makes You Think, Must See TV

Guess Who’s Coming to Halloween?

Hanx!

We’re big enough to admit when we’re wrong, and we were dead wrong when we suggested earlier this week that Tom Hanks’s breathtaking slam poetry performance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon was the grand finale to what had been a stellar week of appearances on talk shows and telethons. We don’t want to go out on a limb and say that he saved the best for last  – because a) we don’t want to be wrong again, and b) we hope there’s still more to come (a visit to Good Day New York, perhaps? – but the self-proclaimed (and rightly so) living legend may have topped himself again last night, as he stopped by The Colbert Report to suggest a few affordable costumes for some good, old-fashioned Spooky Time Halloween Fun (but no Josh Baskin?).

[In an interesting twist, Colbert appeared earlier that night on the latest Office, as case of someone we adore popping up on one of our favorite shows, only to have the person we adore the most pop up on Colbert’s own show later in the evening. Sort of a Russian nesting doll kinda thing]

When will the government go ahead and declare Tom Hanks a national landmark already? That’s Day One stuff.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Freak Out Control, Good Humor, Hanx, Lady Holiday

Must Flee TV: Managing Expectations – An Uneven Season of ‘The Office’ Comes to the Close

This week we’re looking back on the just completed/completing seasons of NBC’s Thursday night comedies.  Today we check in the senior member of the team, ‘The Office.’ 

For quite some time we were religious with our Office recaps, but then two things happened 1) we were working a paid job more than full-time and 2) the show became, well, inessential.  We hoped to check-in during Steve Carell’s final season, but analyses was few and far between.  But even though we weren’t providing regular reviews, the series was still required viewing.  We might not follow-up the next morning with our thoughts, but we were still going out of our way to watch it Thursday night, as much out of habit as desire.  But this season, with Carell’s Michael Scott off to Colorado, the show became the least appealing, least critical member of the lineup.  Wait til Friday to watch Community?  We’d rather not.  Skip an episode of Parks  and Rec?  No way.  But go a week without watching the latest The Office?  Sure.  View an episode of Robert California’s Dunder Mifflin out-of-order?  Fine.  We just didn’t care that much anymore.

But a funny thing happened at the end of The Office’s eighth season.  We were actually invested.  We almost felt things, things that just nearly came close to approximating the real emotions that the show’s best seasons elicited.  For the first time all year, the series seemed to find its voice.

More: How Andy Bernard got his groove back…

1 Comment

Filed under Analysis, Back to the Past, Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Good Humor, Must Flee TV, Must See TV

Who’s Ripping Us Off Now?

With the new fall TV season almost upon us (did you see the “new” promo for NBC’s Wednesday & Thursday night comedies?), we thought we’d offer our first The Office related post in quite sometime.  But this one is less about them and more about us.

It came to our attention shortly after the conclusion of last season that NY Mag‘s Fug Girls (of their “The Cut” blog.  Yes, we do occasionally read (and watch shows) about fashion),

had offered a side-by-side comparison of the employees of Dunder Mifflin’s changing styles during their seven seasons in front of the “documentary” cameras.  It was engaging, well-researched, and totally spot-on  It was also VERY familiar, as we had (twice!) previously posted our own visual essay on the stark physical transformations experienced by the Office cast.   Sure, The Fug Girls presented their findings in attractive slide-show fashion, but we find the single page model much easier and efficient (and we’re not about forcing you into

clicking through a dozen panels just to drive up our page views).  The truth is, we both did a great job distilling the pygmalion like evolution of these characters, and each post has its merits.  So, you know what, we’ll just go ahead let you decide.

Leave a comment

Filed under Dunder Mifflin, this is Pam, Fashion Show at Lunch, Rip-off