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Wow. I actually laughed at no less than three points during this week's episode. I'd forgotten what that felt like! There were still plenty of moments that were...mediocre at best, but I genuinely enjoyed some parts of it. My favorite had to have been the thing with the jammed drawer. It actually felt on par with the stuff Jim used to pull back in the olden days.

The post-season-4 Pam still annoys me, though. She went from one of my favorite characters to one of my least favorite.

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So what did everything think of the first episode with Will Ferell?

I really like Michael's proposal to Holly the episode before

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I liked it. I LOL'ed at poor Andy in the kitchen, trying to make Will Ferrell laugh. "I guess this is my life now...". Poor guy :lol:

But...

The post-season-4 Pam still annoys me, though. She went from one of my favorite characters to one of my least favorite.

...couldn't agree more with this. Jim, too, but Pam especially is just a completely different person now.

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I found this latest episode to be...all right. There wasn't much in it that actually bothered me, which is nice. :P It's a little hard to get a read on this Deangelo guy...in the beginning, they were making him so much like Michael, but then I felt like I was getting mixed signals about it, for lack of a better term. In any case, kudos to Will Ferrell for not really distracting from the show with his...Ferrell-ness. He actually seems like a pretty good fit. It'll be interesting to see if they end up ultimately giving Dwight the position. (That would echo the UK version rather nicely, and I wouldn't have a problem with it.)

The stuff with Andy was supposed to be ridiculous, I know, but it still felt a little bit too slapstick for my tastes. But Michael was perhaps a little closer to classic Michael than usual, which was nice. His reaction to everyone sucking up to the new boss was very much in line with what I'd expect from the character. Seemed to be handled pretty well, and I actually caught myself getting rather bittersweet about his departure, even though it's been several seasons since the real Michael Scott was in play. (Same goes for all the major characters, of course.)

Anyway, it'll be interesting to see what direction they take everything in. Could breathe new life into the show in a moderately pleasant way, or it could make me start REALLY hoping next season is the last. We'll see...

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This last one was great! I felt like for the first time this season, the humor and the characters were really in the style to their origins. Even Pam was an enjoyable character. It wasn't perfect (the Erin/Gabe subplot seemed a little unnecessary), but it was really great. Can't wait for next episode, Michael Scott's last one.

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Mixed feelings about this episode. It was actually going quite well for a while...not old-school brilliance or anything, but I was enjoying it. Even if the actual content isn't amazing, it still helps to bring back something from the early days (i.e. the Dundies). But then everyone started singing, and it all just went to pieces. The only good thing about that was Michael getting choked up, but I absolutely hate it when they have the characters do things like that. The original concept of the show was that these were like the coworkers every office worker has had, and they were toiling under an incompetent and insensitive boss whom they tolerated because they had to. Now, I'm not saying they should have taken the route the UK version did with David Brent's departure, although that worked brilliantly for that show. But having everyone band together and sing like that? It's just painful to watch.

Man, and I really was enjoying that episode for a while.

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Mixed feelings about this episode. It was actually going quite well for a while...not old-school brilliance or anything, but I was enjoying it. Even if the actual content isn't amazing, it still helps to bring back something from the early days (i.e. the Dundies). But then everyone started singing, and it all just went to pieces. The only good thing about that was Michael getting choked up, but I absolutely hate it when they have the characters do things like that. The original concept of the show was that these were like the coworkers every office worker has had, and they were toiling under an incompetent and insensitive boss whom they tolerated because they had to. Now, I'm not saying they should have taken the route the UK version did with David Brent's departure, although that worked brilliantly for that show. But having everyone band together and sing like that? It's just painful to watch.

Man, and I really was enjoying that episode for a while.

I agree the singing was rather awkward to see. That felt very forced and unnatural. (I always hear "unnatural" in Ian McDiarmid's voice, for some reason...) The best part was, like you said, seeing how choked up Michael was getting.

But I think Michael Scott actually was more of a friend to his employees than David Brent ever was. Over the years, he did once in a while do nice things for them (or at least try). He was still incompetent and insensitive, but there were times when he really did try to do nice things for his employees. With varying degrees of success, of course. David Brent was far and away much more of an ass to his workers than Michael Scott.

Not sure I like Deangelo Vickers, and not just because I can't stand Will Ferrell, though I will admit for the most part he is nicely restrained from his usual over-the-top Will Ferrell-ness. I think we're not supposed to like Deangelo, from what little I've heard about the next few episodes, but we'll see.

Glad Erin finally dumped Gabe. (Man, is she a cutie, or what?) *ahem* Um, anyway, yes, it was about time she realized how lame he is.

I'd still love to see Catherine Tate be the chosen one. :)

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Yeah, don't get me wrong - Michael's character was only truly Brent-esque in season 1. After that, the two characters diverged quite a bit, which I think worked out great for the show at first. But they've made him into too much of a friend in recent years. Or rather, they've made all the other characters too friendly to him. I wouldn't want Michael to have been ignored as he left the show or anything, but something a little more restrained and a little more touching would have been nice. As it is, it just felt like yet another excuse to give these actors something more to do than act like bored office drones. It's a trap the show has fallen into in recent seasons, especially in certain episodes. It's like they've forgotten that the actors are not supposed to be portraying actors.

Yeah, I've still got mixed feelings about Deangelo, too. He was really hard to get a read on last week...he was a little more evenly characterized this week. We'll see...

As for Erin dumping Gabe...that was, as Darryl put it, cold. I seriously cannot get a read on her character, either. I can't even explain it. She has just done absolutely nothing for me ever since she joined the show. I agree that she's cute, and the actress is probably a lovely person and all, but there is just nothing about that character that I like. This breakup just came out of nowhere and rendered the whole Erin-and-Gabe-are-dating subplot totally pointless, as far as I can tell. Those sorts of dating-the-wrong-person subplots can work brilliantly (c.f. Pam and Roy), but you have to care about the characters. I mean, maybe they'll do something meaningful with it in the episodes to come, but all I can really see happening is Erin and Andy getting together. Which is, like, whatever...I don't really care about either character. (Andy, incidentally, is another character who's massively changed since his early days as an annoying Cornell alumnus with an anger problem.)

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Just watched it,... it was pretty good. The office co-workers practicing a song (which by the way was from Rent) together for Michael is the same thing as them all practicing a dance together for Jim and Pam's wedding... so you either love both or hate both I'd say. I'm kind of on the fence about it

I wonder if Will Ferrell will be around next season.... maybe its a red herring and Jim or Dwight will be the new boss next season

Erin is cute and yay, dating Gabe was only ever just a reason to have Andy pine for her and add some tension... but it never really worked... there were hardly any scenes of Andy pining for her really

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The office co-workers practicing a song (which by the way was from Rent) together for Michael is the same thing as them all practicing a dance together for Jim and Pam's wedding... so you either love both or hate both I'd say.

Yeah, it's exactly the same sort of thing. I hated that, too. :lol:

I really hated that. =/

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Well, I thought the song was great. I think in the end they realize that Michael is more like a little kid than anything else...he's naive, and I think that kinda explains his inability to empathize with other characters.

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And that's totally fine. A realization like that is appropriate for the departure of the character, I think. My problem is with the way they expressed it. It's totally inconsistent with the way the characters (used to) behave, and with the (original) tone of the show.

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I don't know, I think a realization like that would justify an entirely different treatment towards Michael...they are modeled after people, after all, they're allowed to chagen. If you don't like what they've changed into, then that I can understand (and, in many cases, agree with). But I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing for TV characters to change. :)

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Oh, I wasn't trying to say that change is inherently bad. I mean, it's possible to do a great job with that. LOST's Sawyer is my favorite example of that being done right. It's a gradual, intentional progression that never feels like it compromises the core of the character. It feels realistic, and more importantly, the changed character is still someone to enjoy watching on the show. The changes in The Office have been somewhat gradual, and probably somewhat intentional as well, but they've been far from realistic and far from enjoyable, as far as I'm concerned.

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Wow, what a flat, underwhelming episode for Michael Scott to leave on. And I don't buy any "oh but it was understated" excuses, it was just lame. I think I'm finally done with this show. This episode finally woke me up to that realization. The non-Michael bits lately have been painfully dull and unfunny. Pam & Jim are now totally useless and almost unlikeable. Erin and Andy could be a fun storyline but nothing is really happening there at all lately, apart from the uncomfortable breakup of Erin and Gabe.

The only (slim) chance this show has of keeping me as a viewer is if either Will ("Illusion, Michael! A trick is something a whore does for money... or, candy!") Arnett or Catherine (Donna Noble!) Tate becomes the new boss. Any of the other choices from the guest stars in the finale I really do not want to see at all, apart from Ricky Gervais but can you really see him becoming a regular? I really don't see him tying himself to this show for an extended period at all.

Steve Carell, you deserved better. But I think you were wise to get out now.

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I found Michael's final episode to be...about as good as I could have hoped, considering the overall quality level of the show these days. There were no truly cringe-worthy parts, which was nice. There were even two moments in which the cameramen's presence was truly acknowledged for the first time in years - Jim's comment about filming people in the bathroom, and Michael asking them to let him know if this ever airs. The latter was especially nice to have in there. The UK version, of course, takes a break between the end of the show proper and the start of the Christmas special, and when the latter begins, the premise is that the "documentary" actually aired on the BBC, and David Brent now has sort of B-list (er, more like D-list) celebrity status. They actually acknowledged the fact that they'd been shooting this thing, which I liked, and in recent years, the American version has just totally given up any attempts to make that work. I mean, the idea that they'd shoot these people's lives daily for the better part of seven years without airing it is kind of...weird, I suppose, but I still enjoyed that comment.

For me, I think the best part of the episode was Jim's final scene with Michael. That was handled very well by both of them, and by the writers.

Oh, and it was good getting a taste (no pun intended) of the horrors that await with Will Ferrell's character. And Gabe finally did something more than just stand around awkwardly, which was cool, though I still don't really care much about him or Erin or post-S4 Andy.

I suppose I'll keep watching the show to see what they do next. No expectations of greatness, but the nosedive seems to have stopped...now they're just cruising at an uncomfortably low altitude...with occasional ascents above the clouds of mediocrity...and I really cared about this airplane back in the day, so it's hard to blow the hatch and jump out.

EDIT: And yes, seasons 2 and 3 were the best by far. Season 1 was a little too close to the UK version, and the show hadn't really formed its own identity yet. Season 4 had some absolutely amazing moments and even episodes (e.g. "Dinner Party"), but that was when things started being not quite right. Season 5 was when it started being genuinely unfunny, and then as season 6 drew near, the show actually started becoming annoying.

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I liked it. I think the two best goodbyes were actually to the warehouse and to Dwight. Obviously all of the goodbyes were trying to sum up Michael's relationship with these various people, and most of them did a serviceable job, but I thought those two goodbyes really nailed it. I loved watching Michael make one last-ditch effort to use the baler, and his attempts to make that basket and impress all the warehouse guys (who, of course, ignore him the entire time) were hilarious. And Dwight finally getting his long-awaited recognition from Michael was really great to see, and their paintball battle was the icing on the cake. Really wrapped up their relationship beautifully.

I thought Jim and Pam's moments with Michael were sweet too, and the gifts to the other staff members were fitting enough. I would have liked to see something a little more clever cooked up for both Toby and Ryan, but oh well. Can't have everything.

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It was an alright episode. The annoying thing was the length. 52 minutes, really? Why not cook up 8 more minutes of material and make it a full hour?

Anyway, most of Michael's gifts and goodbyes were spot on, but like other's have said, I expected more for both Toby and Ryan. In fact, the way it came back from commercial it seems like it was in the middle of the Michael/Toby scene so maybe there is a deleted scene there. I wonder if Toby's cousin was played by Warren Lieberstein, Paul's real life cousin.

I was hugely disappointed by Pam in the episode. Leaving the office to go see The King's Speech just seemed weird, and that we didn't get to hear her goodbye to Michael was odd. Though Michael unplugging his microphone then having an off-mic conversation with the secretary did remind me of the UK version

The Michael/Dwight and Michael/Jim goodbyes were perfect.

The Will Ferrell subplot was just LUDICROUS. So he only got the job cause he saveed Jo Bennet's dog? And it turns out he's completely insane and a terrible salesman? Oookkk. I know the show stretches credibility all the time, but this just seemed to stretch it too far.

Drop all the guest starts and just make Dwight or Jim the boss of the office, that's what the fans want and what makes sense anyway

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Drop all the guest starts and just make Dwight or Jim the boss of the office, that's what the fans want and what makes sense anyway

The actor who plays Toby (and is also one of the writers) gave an interview recently affirming that it's definitely not Jim, since the fans, the writers, and even John Krasinski found the character insufferably boring and uninteresting during his brief stint as manager. And I actually really hope it's not Dwight. The main reason that he's so funny is that he's so domineering and power-hungry, but doesn't actually have any power. While Michael could be annoying, he definitely never had power issues, and I don't think I could take The Office with a megalomaniac in charge for very long.

I've actually been thinking (and hoping) for awhile that it's going to be Daryl. They've been really building up his character over the last few seasons, Jo loves him, and he'd be a surprising, out-of-left-field choice.

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Just saw the latest episode. Not bad, actually! Not great, not hilarious, but I enjoyed it enough, I suppose. Weird seeing the intro with Rainn Wilson getting top billing and no Steve Carell, but I actually didn't really miss Michael in the episode. I guess it's just been so long since he was genuinely hilarious that it was fine.

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Well, after not bothering to watch the final Deangelo episode, I did watch last night's episode. I got some chuckles out of it, but it sure feels like it's lost its way without Michael. The situation used to get Dwight removed from the position felt very contrived and much too quickly resolved. I did get a kick out of who the new "acting manager" was revealed to be at the end. :) I also got a nice giggle out of the very last scene, of Kevin screwing up the copier code.

The quick ad for next week...Disappointed that it looks like David Brent's appearance isn't in person but on a webcam. Also kind of annoyed that when they showed all the guest stars who'll be vying for the job, it looked like they didn't flash Catherine Tate's name, which they did for everyone else. That was a bit rude. Now I really hope she gets the job. :)

I have a feeling the final scene of the episode/season will be someone saying "So when can you start?" and the camera then revealing who's got the job, and it being none of the touted guest stars, but someone completely unexpected. I could be totally wrong, and probably am/will be. But whoever it is, that's gonna be make-or-break for me. I think the only way I'll keep watching is if it's either Catherine Tate (unlikely, IMHO), Ricky Gervais (very unlikely), or Will Arnett (possible). Or a surprise guest star, possibly. If it's Jim Carrey (no way would he do weekly series TV now), Ray Romano (possible), or James Spader (possible), I'm gone.I think if it's any of the regulars, I'm still gone. Sorry.

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For me, it was another not-bad episode. I found it moderately funny in some parts, and generally not annoying. I kind of figured the gun had to go off at some point, but it still made me jump, and Andy had me scared for just a sec. Kudos to them for including something slightly serious...it's been a while since that happened.

The lack of Michael still isn't bothering me that much, which is surprising, but again, it's been so long since we were consistently getting real Michael Scott hilarity that it's kind of like we're not missing much. I'll definitely be curious to see who ends up with the job eventually, but I really couldn't make much of a prediction. I haven't really paid any attention to whatever's going on with upcoming guest stars and whatnot.

I will say that if it were Ricky Gervais, I think that'd be a hoot. But I'm sure that won't happen.

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You know what's interesting about including David Brent into the reality of the US show, that means that it also involves bringing the documentary he was filmed for into the reality of the show. So that means the Dunder Mifflin US employees being filmed are aware that there was a show that aired in the UK that was a documentary of a paper company there. Makes it seem extra odd that after 7 years the footage hasn't aired yet. Would be a nice way to mix up the show if in between seasons 7 and 8 the footage starts airing - they could even say its the big new hit on NBC Must See TV Thursday or something - and we could have scenes in Season 8 of the characters reacting to their "celebrity". That'd be a nice mixup.

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Yeah, come to think of it, Michael's line about the show airing could be a nice way to foreshadow some sort of thing like that. I kind of doubt they'll do it at this point, as they seem to have just decided not to think too much about the reality of the cameras' presence, but who knows.

Actually, that'd be my biggest reason to NOT want David Brent to have a central role in the show. A cameo or two is absolutely fantastic, but to actually make him really a part of everything would raise too many questions about this sort of thing. As a quick little in-joke, it's seriously awesome, but if he spent a lot of time on the show, there'd be no escaping the reality that he'd already worked with many of the same people under different names and with different accents. (Okay, okay, there are differences, and plenty of 'em, but still.)

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Yeah, come to think of it, Michael's line about the show airing could be a nice way to foreshadow some sort of thing like that. I kind of doubt they'll do it at this point, as they seem to have just decided not to think too much about the reality of the cameras' presence, but who knows.

Actually, that'd be my biggest reason to NOT want David Brent to have a central role in the show. A cameo or two is absolutely fantastic, but to actually make him really a part of everything would raise too many questions about this sort of thing. As a quick little in-joke, it's seriously awesome, but if he spent a lot of time on the show, there'd be no escaping the reality that he'd already worked with many of the same people under different names and with different accents. (Okay, okay, there are differences, and plenty of 'em, but still.)

I don't really have a huge problem with the cameras thing. It's just a novelty, the show doesn't really hang on it, and while they're not hammering in the presence of the cameras every single episode, the talking head interviews are still ever-present and there are plenty of cutesy or self-conscious looks toward the camera. There's still a sense on the show that there are people filming, and so what if it's not completely realistic? It's comedy!

As for David Brent being a regular, I don't think it'd be a huge problem having that kind of a cross-over. There's no doubt that they'd acknowledge it in some way. My problem with having David or any other "star" would be that it would still be all about the boss, only completely gimmicky. I like the idea that Michael's departure could mean that the show becomes more of an ensemble, where no one character really outweighs another. Though the challenge there will be to find a strong enough emotional center to carry out a continuing story. Otherwise it just teeters completely over to episodic sitcom territory.

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Don't get me wrong, it's not a big deal to me. I do like that they addressed it more directly in the UK version, but my opinion of the show doesn't totally hinge on it. Nailing the right combination of utter hilarity and more serious emotional content (e.g. Pam and Jim, mostly in the first three or four seasons) is the key.

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Hmmm. Well, I guess we won't find out til fall who the new boss is...

source

Is this to give them time to find out who generates the best buzz during summer after the audience sees the candidates? I think this smacks of cowardice. They've pretty much teased us for weeks/months about this finale and "who's gonna be the new boss" and then to turn around and NOT tell us in the finale... well, that stinks. Granted, I don't remember every bit of PR they've released over the last season, so I can't say "officially" whether or not they stated it would actually be revealed in the finale, but even so, this is lame.The whole thing is an annoying circus now.

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Hmmm. Well, that was a bit of time-wasting, wasn't it?

Is it me, or did James Spader look like some crazy hybrid of Patrick McGoohan and Christopher Walken? Kind of acted like it, too. He was probably the most interesting of the applicants, as much as I enjoy Catherine Tate her character really didn't have a spark, IMHO. Ray Romano was surprisingly not-extremely-annoying, but can you really see that sad sack character as the permanent boss? Shame Ricky Gervais almost literally phoned it in (was that Gabe being stupid and calling a DVD a "video CD"?). Will Arnett was OK but not hit-it-out-of-the-park great.

Creed was hilarious, though. Love Creed.

This show's gonna be deleted from my DVR schedule unless they hire someone good as the new boss this summer. I have a feeling they won't, though. At least not good enough to lure me into watching it. Oh, well.

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I actually laughed a lot during the season finale. Thought it was pretty good. Though I find myself completely not caring about who will be the new boss next year. I dunno why they can't just make it Jim. He deserves it and he earned it and the cast is enormous - adding another character isn't necessary. Find more screen time for the existing ones, especially the ones that have been sidelined in recent years.

I feel like Angela's relationship with the gay senator is completely under-developed. Lame the actor couldn't have come in for the finale so we could see the proposal too.

Kevin hasn't been the same since him and his fiance Stacey broke up. I liked it better when he had her

Andy finally getting a chance to date Erin and not wanting it? WTF was that all about?

Speaking of Erin, that plot point about Phyllis possibly being Erin's mother came out of nowhere and was resolved weirdly.

Kelly and Ryan have been underused lately as well. I enjoyed the original arc Ryan took, from temp to sales to manager to drug user to recovery back to temp was fine. But since then they've done nothing interesting with him, and him back with kelly has provided no real comic fodder in a while. It was funny when Kelly was dating Darryl, but I guess that wouldn't have lasted. I dunno.

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I think the Office is now officially only good for one-liners. There are actually some pretty funny isolated moments, but you can't expect to enjoy the plot and you especially can't expect to enjoy the formulaic and unrealistic love stories. A lot of the main characters, especially Pam and Dwight, are really annoying. Jim, the British lady, Ryan, and to a lesser extent Ryan and Andy are still pretty solid.

It's still worth watching, but it's also pretty mediocre.

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I feel the Office is slowly improving from the low it hit earlier in the season. Also I think Dwight and Pam are pretty solid, but Erin has become incredibly annoying and Andy too to a certain degree...

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The middle of the season has been pretty good overall, I think--and the excursion to Florida kinda felt more old school by reminding us that there's actually work going on outside of the Scranton branch.

I'm terribly disappointed with the handling of the Erin/Andy angle, though.

I had really hoped that Erin would just say no and that would be, more or less, it--for two reasons: Firstly, it would be good following Michael and Erin's last conversation about how she didn't have to pick Andy or Gabe necessarily. Secondly, it would be good to see someone other than Stanley with an extra-office relationship.

I was really rooting for the couple in season 6, but after all the on/off with them, I was getting more good reasons for them to not end up together. Now not only are they ending up together, but in the lamest possible way. He says "Hey, I love you!" She says "Great. No." Then Claudette tells her she's making a mistake and all of a sudden, DERP! That fixes everything. We're good! How about a little real soul-searching, huh? What about actually giving the father figure (at least as of season 7) a call? Hmmm? Bah.

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Secondly, it would be good to see someone other than Stanley with an extra-office relationship.

Angela, Oscar, and Phyllis have all had relationship story lines outside of Dunder Mifflin.

I agree, though, that while the series has been finding an okay rhythm sans Michael, it's still clearly seen better days. I say next season will be the last.

And I REALLY can't stand the new characters, Robert California and whoever the hell that British lady is. They're thoroughly unamusing.

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I feel the Office is slowly improving from the low it hit earlier in the season. Also I think Dwight and Pam are pretty solid, but Erin has become incredibly annoying and Andy too to a certain degree...

I dunno, Pam used to be clever and kind. Now she's becoming much more selfish and a little stupid. It's not as bad as it has been in the past, but she's not not an interesting character to me anymore.

I'm terribly disappointed with the handling of the Erin/Andy angle, though.

I had really hoped that Erin would just say no and that would be, more or less, it--for two reasons: Firstly, it would be good following Michael and Erin's last conversation about how she didn't have to pick Andy or Gabe necessarily. Secondly, it would be good to see someone other than Stanley with an extra-office relationship.

I was really rooting for the couple in season 6, but after all the on/off with them, I was getting more good reasons for them to not end up together. Now not only are they ending up together, but in the lamest possible way. He says "Hey, I love you!" She says "Great. No." Then Claudette tells her she's making a mistake and all of a sudden, DERP! That fixes everything. We're good! How about a little real soul-searching, huh? What about actually giving the father figure (at least as of season 7) a call? Hmmm? Bah.

I hated the Andy/Erin angle ever since Erin randomly dumped Andy for Gabe, and passed it off as some weird sexual harassment issue? WTF was that about? To me it seemed like the writers said "shit, we should have replicated Pam and Jim's relationship arc so we can drag out this relationship for as long as possible--let's find a reason for Andy and Erin to break up!" Everything about it seems to be screaming Pam and Jim, especially in this last episode. Jim proposes to Pam when it's raining outside, signifying how they're so in love they don't care about getting wet. Andy and Erin start making out in the middle of a busy intersection, signifying how they're so in love they don't care if they piss off other drivers.

Everything about it is just so cliche and predictable at this point.

And I REALLY can't stand the new characters, Robert California and whoever the hell that British lady is. They're thoroughly unamusing.

The British lady is hilarious, IMO. I loved her when she first interviewed for Regional Manager, and I'm glad they brought her back, however forced her reintroduction was. Her setup for the first meeting, getting Ryan to ask all those questions, was absolutely hilarious. Some of her stunts are a little too "remember when Michael used to do this stuff," but I think she's different enough to be one of the most enjoyable elements of the show.

I like California too, although his character is best when viewed in small doses, like Creed. What confuses me is why he isn't Regional Manager. I mean, he's the CEO of Dunder Mifflin, but for some reason every single week he finds an excuse to come to the Scranton branch? Why not keep Andy as a salesman and just make California the manager?

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The British lady is hilarious, IMO. I loved her when she first interviewed for Regional Manager, and I'm glad they brought her back, however forced her reintroduction was. Her setup for the first meeting, getting Ryan to ask all those questions, was absolutely hilarious. Some of her stunts are a little too "remember when Michael used to do this stuff," but I think she's different enough to be one of the most enjoyable elements of the show.

I like California too, although his character is best when viewed in small doses, like Creed. What confuses me is why he isn't Regional Manager. I mean, he's the CEO of Dunder Mifflin, but for some reason every single week he finds an excuse to come to the Scranton branch? Why not keep Andy as a salesman and just make California the manager?

I really like Robert California and the British Lady, they're both quite amusing. Its just the Andy and Erin relationship is seriously annoying. The show hit a seriously bad low at the beginning of the new season, but its picking up.

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they should've ended the office when michael left. I haven't even bothered watching season 8, just the first 5 episodes or so... it just isn't the same. just felt like an awkward struggle to keep the viewers happy. I did like robert california though.

whenever I miss the office I just rewatch seasons 2-4.

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So is it just me or is this current (9th) season of The Office one of the best? Out of nowhere this season is shaping up to be really good!

I mean its been mostly crap for years now, and seasons 7 and 8 especially were the bottom of the barrel. This season didn't start out that much better but somehow since Andy left the Andy/Erin/Pete, Angela/Senator/Dwight, and Jim/Pam/Brian storylines have all been good. The only thing I don't get is that Andy has been gone from the show since the 6 episode of this season... why is he still in the opening credits? I really like the storyline with Jim and now Darryl working for Athlead too. And the fact that they are actually showing the documentary crew interacting with the "subjects" is just great.

Kinda sad the show is getting this good now that there are only 10 episodes left ever!

EDIT: I just looked it up and Greg Daniels, who created the show and was showrunner for the first 4 seasons, has returned to be showrunner for this season. Maybe that's part of it.

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Since the writer's strike ended, the show has become pretty bad as far as overall storyline goes. There have been a few peaks (ie Jim and Pam's wedding), but overall the trend has been down, and I don't think the new season is an exception. In fact I think the lack of Michael is making it even worse. Still worth watching for some funny one-liners, but I'm not really getting anything from the rest. And it's completely inconsistant. Like last week's episode, when

the cameraman consoled Pam. How is it that when Dwight almost drowns to death, or Andy tries to run over Dwight, or when Michael almost commits suicide, or when Angela tries to kill Oscar, etc., the microphone guy just looks on. But when Pam starts crying, that's worth shutting the cameras off.

Or maybe I'm just upset because 30 Rock is over. :(

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