“I sold paper at this company for twelve years. My job was to speak to clients, on the phone, about quantities and types of copier paper. Even if I didn’t love every minute of it, everything I have, I owe to this job. This stupid, wonderful, boring, amazing job.”-Jim
It finally happened; the end of “The Office.” After nine amazing years, it just didn’t seem right to let it go without writing one last review.
So here it is:
Promos for the finale had said the episode would take place six months after the previous one, “A.A.R.M.,” but the audience was informed at the beginning of the finale that a year had actually passed. I’m not sure why this change occurred but I was initially baffled by the inconsistency. It wasn’t something, however, that ruined my enjoyment of the episode.
The characters revealed to the audience what had occurred in that time span, including the termination of Kevin and Toby, the arrest of Creed, Stanley’s retirement, and the impending arrival of Dwight and Angela’s wedding. My only question was how Dwight was actually able to fire Toby, considering Michael tried to for years but was never able to make it happen.
We were also brought up to speed when other characters began to arrive back in Scranton for the documentary panel. Andy took the time to explain how he became a viral sensation after his a capella audition, and much like other Andy moments this season, I could have done without the constant jokes about him being a crybaby after being rejected by the judges on the show.
Darryl went on to help with the success of Athleap (formally Athlead) and I could tell that things were still weird between Jim and Pam when he mentioned the company. I knew that the issue would likely still be addressed later in the episode, I just wasn’t sure how.
The Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties
The focus of the episode then switched to Dwight’s bachelor party with Jim (shockingly) being chosen as the best man, or in Schrute language “bestisch mensch.” Part of me hoped that Jim would take advantage of the opportunity to pull some of his classic pranks, but I guess he decided to just please his friend. I particularly enjoyed the scene when Dwight was trying to order dinner from the stripper and was too busy focusing on what he wanted to eat.
Meanwhile, Angela was having her own celebration with the girls back at Schrute Farms. She also had a stripper….who turned out to be Meredith’s son. I couldn’t stop laughing at Meredith’s eager approval of his behavior, simply because it was spot on for her character. Kudos to the writers for such a hilarious surprise!
I was a bit underwhelmed, however, when Mose kidnapped Angela for yet another Schrute bachelor party tradition. It just wasn’t all that entertaining and didn’t really seem to serve much of a purpose in my opinion. On the plus side though, Dwight’s quest to find her led him to a bar that turned out to be owned by Kevin.
I have been to a number of Q & A panels, and I can say that the writers did a fantastic job in this scene of capturing just how awkward fan questions can be.
One of my favorite questions came from “fan” Steve who asked, “Do you find that your life is pointless now that nobody’s actually filming you anymore?” and Toby quickly responded, “Yes.”
All of the questions directed at Jim and Pam were particularly entertaining, especially as I know they were based on things that real fans of the show were curious about. I felt bad for Pam, however, when fans began to bash her treatment of Jim and contribution to her marriage. I honestly would expect people to treat her the same way had Pam been a real person.
Finally, though some may argue that the reunion between Erin and her birth parents was a bit predictable, I found it to be a heart-warming moment for the character.
Dwight and Angela’s wedding was not only the perfect way to give these two characters their happy ending, but also served as a way to begin wrapping up storylines for other characters.
One very small moment that I found to be a perfect tribute to Angela was the moment when guests brought cats as gifts to the wedding.
I knew when Jim informed Dwight that he would be unable to serve as his best man that Michael had returned. While it was nice to see him back by Dwight’s side, I’m glad that the episode did not become focused only on Michael. In my opinion, he had his send-off in season seven, and the other characters deserved theirs, as well.
The minute I saw Ryan with the baby, I knew that before the reception ended, he and Kelly would ultimately make out at a table. As I’ve said before, they’re such horrible people but they’re still perfect for each other. Therefore, I was not at all surprised when they ran off together, leaving the baby (and Kelly’s husband) behind. At least it looks like Nellie will finally get to become a mom!
Even after the wedding, there was still much to be done!
Jim and Pam returned home from the wedding to find Carol showing their house to some prospective buyers. Pam told Jim that she decided to try and sell the house so that they could move to Austin, Texas and return to Jim’s company Athleap. Naturally she pointed out that he bought the house without her knowing (good point, Pam!) and the two decided to make the move official when the other couple made an offer. I was pleased to see that the two of them were finally able to move on from Dunder-Mifflin, since that is what they have always wanted.
The office gang also returned to the warehouse for a documentary wrap-party, which led to a number of memorable moments.
-Pam revealed a mural she painted of the original ‘Office’ gang.
-Pam admitted that she couldn’t even watch the documentary herself because she wanted to “yell at Pam.” The writers certainly captured the way the fans felt in the early seasons.
-Jim and Pam informed Dwight that they were leaving Dunder-Mifflin. I really do think that he was sad to see them go.
-Creed, who was a wanted man, was taking shelter in the office and accidentally ran into his former co-workers. He always seemed to show up at the most awkward times, and this was no exception. I was also happy to hear him play the guitar for everyone.
-Kevin was so emotional that he told Oscar he thought he was also gay. Oscar firmly disagreed.
-Finally, Pam couldn’t leave Dunder-Mifflin without taking her painting of the building.
Overall, the finale was everything I hoped it would be: heart-warming, funny, and the perfect send-off for these beloved characters. A big thank you to “The Office” writers and actors for making such a wonderful episode. You certainly left me satisfied and smiling….
That’s what she said.