The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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‘Office’ needs overtime to return to pre-strike excellence

The onset of the writer’s strike not only found writers seeking out better terms for their contracts but it also left TV viewers scrambling to find replacements for favorite shows that were forced into an indefinite hiatus.

NBC’s hit “The Office,” returned with its first new episode (“The Dinner Party”) since the 100-day strike ended back in February.

As the show opened, all of our favorite Dunder-Mifflin employees were present as they were required to work late for mandatory overtime-but not for long.

In typical Michael (Steve Carell) fashion, the staged overtime was a way to ensure that the new office couple, Pam (Jenna Fischer) and Jim (John Krasinski), would have no plans or excuses and could finally come over for dinner that evening with his girlfriend and former boss, Jan (Melora Hardin).

Angela (Angela Kinsey) and Andy (Ed Helms) are the other couple in the office and were also invited.

Unfortunately for Dwight (Rainn Wilson), his current single status and a shortage of wines glasses prohibited his attendance.

The show broke its standard setting when this episode occurred primarily at the home of Michel and Jan.

Pam and Jim arrive first and are taken on a house tour where they are shown Jan’s office, her separate workspace where she makes her line of candles, and the bedroom that was equipped with a camcorder and newly painted walls (the walls went from white to egg shell white because it was “too white.”)

As the tour began, there was a laughable Andy Warhol inspired painting of Jan on the wall as they proceed up the stairs.

Michael told the group about how he finally “broke down and bought a plasma TV,” a nine-inch plasma that set him back $200.

Once Angela and Andy arrived, dysfunction seemed to peak between Michael and Jan during a game of charades.

As the couples wait three hours for the meat to marinate a desperate and unsuccessful Jim attempted escape by saying he received a text message from his landlord that his apartment had been flooded.

When the ladies take a trip to the kitchen, Michael takes the men to the garage and gives them an investment pitch for Jan’s candle business.

Dwight, who is not willing to take no for an answer when it comes to his favorite boss, shows up with a date and their own wine glasses. The lady on his arm happened to be his former babysitter and he described their relationship as “purely carnal.”

The police were called by the neighbors after they heard yelling after Jan threw one of Michael’s awards at his plasma.

Michael ends up going home with Dwight while his date catches the bus home.

Pam and Jim wind up eating hamburgers in the parking lot of a burger stand.

This episode had its moments, but reeked of awkwardness that can possibly be attributed to the change of scenery and crazy Jan.

While the other officemates have minor roles in the show, their presence was missed on this episode, and goes to show that they are important to the show’s success.

Jan, on the other hand, must go. Who knew that being fired from your job could make you that crazy?

It was not the strongest return, but there is no doubt that things will only get better from here.

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