Tori’s Review: Business School

Before I start this review, I must make a confession.

I’ve never seen Firefly or Serenity. I’ve watched one episode of Buffy and maybe five episodes of Angel. I’m ashamed. I’m naked before you. But, now that I have admitted it, I vow to rent Firefly A.S.A.P. I want a brown coat like the other cool kids. (Did I get that wrong?)

I’m confessing this sin, of course, because Joss Whedon directed this week’s episode of The Office. I’ve read it was a coincidence this episode featured a rogue bat and Vampire!Jim, but I think it was just a sign it was meant to be.

I thought this was a fantastic episode. Michael was a lovable lunatic, we got great character moments, and — it had a bat! What is that?

Yes, it did have the reunion of Pam and Roy. That kind of sucked. I hear your cries and curse words, but fear not JAMpires, I think Pam is about to have her “Oprah moment.”

Even worse than a bat loose in an office, is a Michael loose on a college campus. How poorly is Ryan doing in school that he would risk humiliation, property damage, and candy bar assaults for a better letter grade? Maybe Ryan needs to spend less time watching Ugly Betty with Kelly and more time with the books.

It broke my heart when Michael realized his “big honor” was really an example of the downfall of small business. But through the humiliation, I think Ryan learned a small lesson from Michael. While Dunder Mifflin may one day go under, “A boss inspires people, and people don’t go out of business.” Unfortunately, he now must sit in the Annex — with Kelly. Beneath Michael’s lunacy and child-like behavior, he really does care about people and he hopes to inspire them in his own bizarre way.

Michael has inspired Dwight. Whenever I’m about to do something, I think, “Would an idiot do that?” And if they would, I do not do that thing. It makes me wonder what Dwight’s idea of an “idiot move” would be, because chasing a bat with a bag and sawed off broom (love ya, Creed!) is high up on my list. The entire mess did make for some great television, though. Angela’s stop-drop-and-roll and Mary Beth’s kitchen ass-kicking will go down as some of my favorite moments in Office history.

Back to Pam’s Oprah moment. I feel it in the air like an old man can feel rain coming. She described getting back together with Roy as stable and mature. Wrong. As much as it hurt her feelings, Gil hit the nail on the head: Pam is not courageous or honest with herself. She draws Dunder Mifflin and staplers and mugs because that is all she sees. She is too damn afraid of what she will find if she really looks. But if she can do it, I think she will be happy. I want Pam to be happy.

As the old cliché goes, art is in the eye of the beholder. Michael saw something in that drawing of Dunder Mifflin that he really needed to see. The final scene was touching — Michael was proud of Pam and it gave her the bit of inspiration she needed. After all, that is what bosses do — they inspire people.

Plus, he didn’t try and kiss her this time, so … progress.

Keep the faith, JAM fans. I feel we will get our happy ending someday. May your hats fly as high as your dreams. That doesn’t apply here, does it?

Tori Weber is a Web Producer and writer for a television news station in Orlando, FL. Writing keeps her sane, and ice cream makes her happy. Dogs are good too. Visit her here.

40 comments

  1. I, too, have yet to see Firefly. As of Friday it is in my Netflix queue! I love the JAMpires reference. I am so glad you are doing these re-caps as they are very entertaining!

  2. You should definitely watch Firefly. It is still my favorite tv show even though The Office is coming close to it. Especially with this episode. I completely agree with you about Pam. She needs to find more in her life and be brave. But she showed what is special in her life and for Michael, that is what makes him happy even if its not her path. Jim/Pam fans just need to be patient with them, as they grow as people they’ll surely get together eventually.

  3. Love Buffy, liked Serenity. Good themes in both shows. And, of course, I loved this episode of The Office.

  4. Hehe…JAMpires. Awesome review Tori! I myself was a Buffy/Angel fan way back when. This was a good episode for him to direct. I still think they had him in mind when writing it; hence the bat and the vampire prank, but maybe not. Thank you for helping us see the light on Jim and Pam. It makes me quite sad Pam went back to Roy but I know it needs to happen for Pam to be able to move forward.

  5. Did anyone else realize that Creed was a vampire for Halloween in Season 2? Kind of a cool callback, I thought.

  6. OK, Pam is goinging to say she’s in love with Jim next episode or something very close to that. Why would I say that? Isn’t that the exact opposite of the normal Pam? Yes. But she heard Gil and is going to step it up. But the real reason I think it’s going to happen is that after The Return (when Jim said he still had feelings for Pam) there was a week off (reruns), kind of like a mini-cliffhanger. After this upcoming episode (Cocktails) there are not 1 but 2 weeks off. Interesting…

  7. You outdid yourself on this one, my JAMpire friend!
    :-) Great insight into the Ryan/Michael dynamic and Pam’s “Oprah moment.” I loved take on Michael this week too- he had a sweet moment with Pam that didn’t end with him trying to kiss her- progress indeed! Brilliant review!!

  8. I so hope you’re right about the Oprah moment.

    Also, in response to ChrisM70 (#16)– I so wish that had happened! How amazing would that have been??

  9. Except Andy cell phone landed over Stanley’s head. Oh…speaking of, how hilarious was Stanley’s “Goodbye”?

  10. great review! i so hope that you are right and pam will have her oprah moment soon! it’s episodes like this one that really make michael seem likeable and like a good boss. last week i was a little worried, because he made such a jerk out of himself, but this week he redeemed himself(well as much as michael scott can redeem himself)…can’t wait for next weeks episode

  11. Great review! I was starting to wonder where this was :-P

    I must confess. I’ve seen nothing at all discussed in your first paragraph. Nothing. :(

    Great recap!

  12. Hey loved your review! I really believe good will come from Gill’s comment, like you said – she needs to look @ reality & see Roy = wrongggg ; jim = rightt!

    * Thats all I gotta say & Oh. Next week BETTER be good.
    Love JAM. Emily

  13. Great review!
    The Office was the only show (DVD) to get me off of my 2 year Buffy/Angel addiction.

  14. Great review! I think the past couple of episodes have been fantastic. This has been a terrific season so far, even if a couple of episodes at the beginning were a little uneven.

  15. A lovely review! Thanks for bringing up the other points of the show besides Jim and Pam. I love that storyline, but there is so much more quality writing to focus on!

  16. yay this is good! Can’t wait for May && to say bye-bye to stupid Karen! Ya know what? I didn’t mind her untill I saw on the ‘Business School’ deleted scenes that she went && ripped Pam’s art show flyer off of the wall. That’s why Jim didn’t show….what ashame.

  17. Excellent review. I caught myself giggling again when you brought up some of the most entertaining moments!
    I was really hoping that Pam would have her epiphany early in the season because breaking up with Roy made it seem like she was heading that way. Karen threw a wrench on the works and she’s stumbled. I hope it doesn’t take until the season finale for the writers to make her step up. Love your reviews!

  18. Whether Karen eventually ripped the flyer off the wall or not, there is no possible way Jim would have gone to the art show without being personally invited to it by Pam, like she invited Toby and Kelly.

    Jim’s absence was Pam’s fault alone.

  19. Thank you for all of the awesome comments! I love writing thsese and it means so much that you all read and enjoy! (It’s okay if you don’t like it too :) )

    Thank you!

  20. Wonderful review, Tori!!

    You have such great insight and I always feel much better about the show after reading your review. I had “mixed” feelings about this episode.

    I hadn’t thought much about the “subjects” of Pam’s art until you mentioned them. Right now her world is so small. Just imagine what she could do with her artistic ability if she was with the one person she truly loved!

  21. Great insight. You should be thinking Jim and Karen, not Jim and that other girl. Also, I like the Office more when they stress less Jim – other girl.

  22. Firefly is amazing! So funny! It is the one show out there that I wish they would bring back. Great ensemble cast. Really witty. Buffy is acutually like that too. Both are not so much about vampires and spaceships as relationships and humor. The Office is my all time favorite show but Firefly is in my top 5 too. I love laugh out loud shows with “smart” humor.

  23. Tori, I agree with you that Pam is prime for an “Oprah Moment”. If we’re to believe she’s smart enough to first notice Dwight/Angela and to pull pranks on Dwight, then she’s smart enough to see through Roy and to realize it’s time for the next chapter in her life.

    But I am part of a growing majority that sees Michael’s over-the-top behavior as annoying, not “lovable” as you stated. We get that he’s socially inept, it doesn’t have to be shoved down our throats each week.

    I find myself fast-forwarding through Michael’s obnoxious scenes now and that’s not good for the health of the show.

  24. What is peeving me the most is what they are doing with Pam. I could understand Pam going out with Roy again just because she thought he could “change.” Classic move. But come on, it is not like Pam just to practically move back in with him. She is the “test the waters” girl until she drowns. I love the Pam character and just feel they are getting awfully lazy with writing her. When she cancelled her wedding, that should have been Pam’s pivot point. Instead, not only do they make her look like a simpleton when she can’t recognize Jim’s continued interest in her but they make her entire life turn on the point of Jim’s perceived disinterest. I mean sure, she could have set backs, but geez, we are right back at day ONE with not even a remnant of Fancy Beesley all because some guy doesn’t like her, and yet he does, but she thinks he doesn’t. Whatever.

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