SPOILER ALERT: This blog contains spoilers of season 9 of “The Office.” If you’re waiting to watch it, go back to doing crossword puzzles with Stanley.
On Thursday, the employees of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin Paper Company will clock out for the last time. After nine years and nearly 200 episodes, “The Office” has its swan song beginning at 8 p.m. with a special retrospective and a one-hour series finale.
The show became the cornerstone of the NBC Thursday night lineup after its premiere in 2005. The initial reception was mixed, since many compared the show to its British predecessor.
Although its rating have dropped since the departure of regional manager Michael Scott (Steve Carell) after season 7. Many wondered why the show didn’t end when Michael left. Michael was the heart and soul of the office, he considered his staff not just employees but his family.
When Michael left and removed his microphone, he had one question. “Would you guys let me know it this ever airs?”
The mockumentary aspect of the series was pushed to the back burner after the first couple of seasons, even though everyone kept doing interviews. The documentary crew followed the employees of a mid-level paper company for nine years, but for what? Why did they need that much footage?
The first post-Scott season was just weird. The Robert California days were often cringe-worthy that left left us wondering where the characters we came to know over the years had gone. And making Andy Bernard (Ed Helms) manager made no sense whatsoever although he did make it possible for former Dunder Mifflin CFO David Wallace (Andy Buckley) to buy back the company that fired him.
This year, we finally saw who was behind the cameras with a couple episodes focusing on a boom guy named Brian, who was first unmasked when he consoled Pam (Jenna Fischer). Jim (John Krasinksi) and Pam’s relationship has been put to the test this season after Jim’s friend started a sports marketing firm in Philadelphia, a couple hours drive from Scranton. The company was Jim’s idea and he wanted to be on the ground floor, hoping to finally escape his mundane job as a paper salesman.
The problem was he wasn’t completely honest with Pam, leading the show’s golden couple to question the stability of their marriage. Although they patched things up and Jim returned to Dunder Mifflin, his co-workers at Athlead are embarking on a 3-month tour to expand the company.
On last week’s episode, “The Office: An American Workplace” documentary aired on PBS. The gang gathered once more at Poor Richard’s Pub to watch it. Tonight’s finale catches us up on what everyone’s been up to following the documentary’s premiere.
Did Pam encourage Jim to join the Athlead promotional tour? Or did he stay in Scranton? Will one of TV’s most beloved romances get their happy ending?
NBC was planning to have a spin-off series centered around Dwight (Rainn Wilson) and his siblings who had never been mentioned before. The pilot, which became “The Farm” episode, fizzled, creating a problem for writers who had to figure out how to end Dwight’s story.
After years of an on-off relationship, last week Dwight proposed to Angela (Angela Kinsey) who told him that her baby with her ex-husband (a Pennsylvania state senator who cheated on her with Oscar) was indeed a Schrute. Last year, a DNA test said otherwise. Maybe Dwight grabbed the wrong diaper since there were other babies in the office the day of the test. Maybe we’ll get an explanation tonight, maybe it’s not important.
The wedding will, however, bring several “Office” alums back one last time. We know that Kelly and Ryan will return, but what about Michael Scott?
After Carell’s surprise appearance at the Scranton Wrap Party, speculation over a Scott cameo has been frenzied.
Michael’s departure was perfect. He said goodbye to everyone in a memorable way and was the perfect ending for the Office’s Best Boss. I understand that they don’t want to overshadow the other cast members, who have been stellar over the years, but one last “That’s What She Said,” couldn’t hurt.
Even if the finale is Scott-free, it’s going to be an emotional night. We’ve spent nine years getting to know these characters. We’ve watched and re-watched their triumphs and tragedies. We’ve seen them evolve, fall in love, break up, struggle financially and some have pursued dreams beyond the world of paper.
Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica…bittersweet.