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Author of Jesus and The Bachelorette and unapologetic devotee of teen soap operas and police procedurals. knoxmccoy.com

We Need To Talk About The Office

Knox: Thanks for being here.

The Office: Yeah man. What’s up?

Knox: We need to talk.

The Office: Uh oh. This sounds serious. I get the feeling that we aren’t going to make it to the 7:15 showing of The Hunger Games.

Knox: (Deep sigh) No. We were never going to see The Hunger Games.

The Office: What’s going on?

Knox: First things first. I love you. I’ll always love you. I’ll always remember our time together fondly…

The Office: Are you breaking up with me?

Knox: No. Just stop just listen. (Prepares falsetto) And I wish to you joy / and happiness / but above all things I wish to you love…

The Office: Are you Whitney Houstoning me right now?

Knox: OMG you are making this so hard.

The Office: That’s what she said.

(Brief high five exchange)

The Office: Making what so hard? What’s going on?

Knox: You suck now. You’re awful. You’re basically unwatchable. It’s painful.

The Office: Wow. Don’t hold back.

Knox: I know. Watching you is like watching a grandparent get to the point where they can’t wipe themselves any more.

The Office: Like their noses? Like they can’t wipe their nose when it is running?

Knox: (Poignant stare)

The Office: (Beat) Ohhhhhhhhhh. That bad? Is it really that bad?

Knox: Watching this season is like watching Old Yeller only if instead of putting him down, they just shot his two front legs off and he survived and had to push his torso around only with his back feet.

The Office: I mean this had to be a little expected after Steve Carell left us.

Knox: Sure and we were more than willing to give you some time to sort yourself out. We’ve been patient with you. We’ve been supportive. We’ve endured this Robert California phase about as long as possible and the fact that Gabe is still in the picture and we’re still around should speak to our patience. But after a certain point, it just isn’t enough anymore.

The Office: But we’ve got the new Nelly character! That’s going to be a great story arc, right?

Knox: (Avoids eye contact. Clears throat)

The Office: Ok, so the new stuff isn’t working out. We’ve still got the old warhorses like Jim and Andy. They’re still great right?

Knox: Jim’s ok, but he’s been stagnating for a while. Basically, he makes faces at the camera, loves pranks and has no ambition. That about sums it all up for Jim.

The Office: What’s wrong with Andy?

Knox: He’s been so grotesquely misused that he’s not the Nard Dog anymore. He’s the Nard Stray Dog who trembles because he’s been beaten down by so many crappy storylines.

The Office: And I guess Dwight sucks too now?

Knox: No, Dwight is still pretty great…

The Office: Which is why we’re considering a spinoff for him!

Knox: Right. Because spinoffs have a track record of doing really well. I remember my favorite episode of Joey except that oh wait I don’t remember anything from that series because our brains repress trauma like that.

The Office: (Shoulder shrug)

Knox: And don’t think that we haven’t noticed that basically every significant creative person involved with the show has jumped ship like there’s a gas leak.

The Office: Ok. Fine. So we’re awful now. What should we do about it?

Knox: Two options: 1) Just put yourself down after this season and don’t prolong the suffering anymore. That way, we can remember the good times more than the recent bad.

The Office: And #2?

Knox: Reboot next season and go in a completely different direction. Think “Michael Scott Paper Company” or the arc when Jim transferred to a different branch. Maybe have Robert California shut down the branch and document the search for employment. I don’t know. I’m not getting paid to write for your show, but you see what I mean.

The Office: But doesn’t that change the nature of the show?

Knox: Yes and that’s the point. Your fundamental nature worked when you had Steve Carell. But you don’t anymore so you need to adjust. It’s like losing your cellphone and trying to replace it with a banana. At some point you need to change your method altogether because the new formula isn’t working.

The Office: You know I’m not going to do any of this right? I’m just going to coast as long as I can and milk the name brand of the show until I go out with a whimper.

Knox: Sadly, yes. I just felt like I owed you a conversation about it.

The Office: Well if we hurry, we still might be able to see the scene where Katniss almost stabs Haymitch’s hand.

Knox: I’m not in the mood.

The Office: That’s what she said (motions to high five).

Knox: No.

 

  • Pipin0510

    Sad but to true. Fantastic post anyway.

  • http://www.leighkramer.com/ HopefulLeigh

    I wish it wasn’t true. Farewell, The Office.

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  • http://www.theisleofman.net/ Kevin Haggerty

    Man. You’re gonna flame me, but I love this season. I’ve always loved Andy Bernard as a character, and I’ve loved how they’ve brought him to the forefront. Robert California is amazing, in my meager opinion. I hated Jo with all my heart, but maybe that’s because I hate Kathy Bates. I have trouble saying this season is better. I also have trouble saying it’s my favorite season. But I am enjoying it. My bad. :)

    Sidenote: Parks & Rec should not be allowed to take hiatuses. They should just have seasons that continue, year-round. We can find a common ground here, yes?

  • http://chrystalmurphy.com/ Chrystal

    I still love so many of the characters…I hate to see them go out like this. Maybe they should’ve just wrapped it up with Michael Scott left…

  • http://www.jonathanpettus.com Jonathan Pettus

    There was a day when Thursdays were exciting for me because I knew a new episode awaited that night. Now, there are some Saturdays when I happen upon 3 new episodes on my DVR and remember- oh yeah, I should watch these. Not because there are three new episodes that will make me laugh with heavy doses of awkward conversations, clever plots, and outrageous gags, but because there’s nothing else on but King of Queens reruns. 

    I can’t figure out if I’m either too nostalgic or too lazy to take the show off my DVR timer. 

  • Rob

    I haven’t hated this season. In fact when Dwight and Jim fought in the hallway I thought it was gloriouse.

    • http://www.theisleofman.net/ Kevin Haggerty

      ^This.

      Just without the “e” on the end of glorious. :)

  • http://katiemaesdailies.blogspot.com/ Katie Alicea

    The only good part of the season is when Dwight stops Jim from being a big dumb cheater and sprays insect repellant on the repellant girl in her underbritches in Jim’s bed.  Other than that…So long, farewelll, auf wiedersehen, goodnight.

  • Auntymelly007

    Great post. Wish it wasn’t true. Thanks goodness for Parks & Rec!

  • http://profiles.google.com/phyxdonim Nathan Eaton

    I’m with you on this. While I haven’t hated this season, there have been many episodes that have just been “Meh”. They’ve had a few bright moments, but overall, it doesn’t feel like the show is still going anywhere any more.

    I’d second that they should end it and call it good. No spin-offs. Let the actors move on to new things that we can fall in love with.

  • DustyKennedy

    Nicely stated….

  • http://twitter.com/nate_rector Nate Rector

    the gist of this post- “the office sucks now” has been true since season 4… the only thing that could save it now is if Steven Colbert were the new manager.

    • http://www.alise-write.com Alise Wright

      I would posit that if they got Ricky Gervais to come in, that would have been pretty kick awesome as well. But yeah. 

  • http://lauramcclellan.com Laura McClellan

    Agreed. I feel like I need to stick it out at this point and see how it ends. I just kind of feel bad for it at this point. But Jim tackling Dwight in the hallway was definitely a highlight. I think the occasional surge in the Jim-Dwight relationship is the only thing we have left from the good ol’ days.

  • http://thomasmarkzuniga.com TMZ

    I was really pleased with the start of this season and how the show transitioned into Andy as the new boss. I could dig/buy/get behind that. But as the season’s progressed it does feel a tad stale to me. It still has me smiling and laughing, but it seems all too routine now. I miss the old days when the characters were awkward and, I dunno, realer around this documentary crew. I think I’m up for one final season after this one, but agree that they need to shift gears majorly.

    Stoked for Dwight’s new show though. A documentary on zany Schrute Farms already sounds brilliant.

  • http://twitter.com/eolsencreative Eric Olsen

    So, here’s the thing. Last night, when Pam and Jim had their back-to-back talking heads with a “What is she still doing here!?!?” in regards to Nelly? I think they (the writers) get it. They know we hate her. Hence last night’s attempt at a redemption episode. I need to see what they do with her next week…

  • http://twitter.com/mollsabeth Molly Gentry

    I hate to agree with this, but you’re absolutely right. I still watch it out of obligation/hope that it will get better. They should end it after this season but then take a page from the BBC version and have a two hour (or maybe just an hour) special to wrap things up.

  • guest

    I still love it.  Not as strong as the first 3 seasons but that’s just me.

  • Travis Batista

     Agreed. Robert California is awful. Nelly is the worst. I just want Michael Scott back.  Maybe just for one episode.  It’s his Mom’s birthday so he comes back to Scranton and visits Dunder Mifflin.  I don’t care.  I just want to remember the good days one last time, but I guess that’s what Netflix is for.

  • http://meetthebuttrams.com/ Jessica Buttram

    Remember when Jim tried to frame Dwight for murdering him? 

    That was great.

  • http://www.rickyanderson.net/ Ricky Anderson

    There’s still funny scenes, but the overall show seems to be limping along.

  • http://unknownjim.com/ Jim Woods

    I’m sure I’m in the minority, but I think this is the first good season in about 2 years. Steve Carrell was killing the show. His character was as boring and predictable as it comes IMO.

  • http://www.anirenicon.com an irenicon

    Amazing. EXACTLY how it feels right now.

  • http://www.anirenicon.com an irenicon

    If anyone is killing the show, it’s Jim.  He shouldn’t be at a low level Scranton paper company for 8 years, playing pranks like he was still fighting for his sanity as he fought for Pam’s affection.  It’s depressing and probably too close to reality to be funny at the moment…

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  • Gipoun

    I think I may be in the minority here, but I still LOVE the show and think it is hilarious. I have enjoyed every season 1-8 and have never felt that it has “jumped the shark”

  • http://twitter.com/peachgeek Donna Williams

    For me, The Office jumped the shark when it jumped the pond.  Sorry.  

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