I’m not sure how many of you here follow the television series The Office, but it seems to be headed downhill. Last night’s episode, Employee Transfer, was the first to be directed by Stephen Merchant, one of the original minds behind the British version of the show. I recently had the opportunity to watch all of the episodes of the British version, and I really liked it. Some episodes were full of uncomfortable situations and were painful to watch (a testament to the actors’ strength), but sadly, the characters were more one-dimensional than their American counterparts. Mr. Merchant’s involvement in last night’s episode had me looking forward to it; perhaps it would recall some of the extremely awkward and uncomfortable situations that made the British version so fun (and difficult) to watch.
Frankly, I was disappointed. Last night’s episode was the second misstep in a row, following the previous Crime Aid episode, which was just as weak. Laughs were few and far between, and the episode simply seemed as a vehicle of (presumably) writing Michael’s latest love interest off of the show. Not only is this disappointing from a character development standpoint (Michael has been maturing rather well this season), but it’s a shame to lose such a great actress in Amy Ryan. She played so well with Steve Carell, which was a nice return to form, seeing as we’ve seemingly lost Dwight to this ridiculous Angela/Andy marriage business.
I’m a giant fan of the show, and I’ll definitely keep watching (especially now that I can watch it in HD). But I’m afraid that the show has peaked, and the best times are now behind us. Perhaps the writers will prove us wrong; I certainly hope they do. Do you watch the show? If so, what do you think?
Now if only more people would start watching Pushing Daisies…