Finalewatch '07: 'The Office'

Jennafischer_theoffice_s2_240And so here we are at the close of another season of The Office, and I can't imagine the end of Thursday's finale won't have tongues wagging all summer.

(Abandon hope of not being spoiled, all ye who enter here. Consider the closing parenthesis the equivalent of Dwight's intimidating black office.)

I speak, of course, of CFO David Wallace's awarding the job at corporate to Ryan. Seriously, that was one helluva bow to put on the season. Ryan, on the phone: "Great, thanks." Kelly: "Who was that?" Ryan: "No one. ... You and I are done." Kelly: "Huh?"

Oh, and then there was that other stuff. It's going to be a happy summer for the 'shippers, and you know what? Given all the pieces the show had to maneuver to get Jim and Pam back to a good spot, it did so pretty darn well. (Oh, and get well soon, Jenna Fischer.)

The finale was not as hurt-your-sides hilarious as several of its best efforts this season (see "Gay Witch Hunt," "Back from Vacation," et al.). And I wonder about making Jan as bat-guano crazy as all that. But between Creed's "blog" and Kevin's list and Dwight's taking over the Scranton branch (totally predictable in him becoming a petty tyrant, utterly awesome in his wish for ), "The Job" brought plenty of funny.

And, OK, that was just one fantastic way to finish the Jim-Pam story. You knew, with Pam's repeated talking-head insistence that everything was cool, that she'd have her world rocked in one way or another by episode's end. But the fact that it was just a small gesture -- Jim popping into the conference room and asking her to dinner -- was unexpected and incredibly sweet and probably the best thing for both of them.

Rashidajones_officeKaren got to go out pretty much on her own terms too. Aside from that out-of-left-field "Pam's a bitch" comment, it was nice that she was still her feisty, clear-eyed self all the way to the end (and, since Rashida Jones is on a FOX show next season, this was more than likely it for her on The Office). I wouldn't want to go back to Scranton if I were her either.

Now, Jan. There had of course been hints that she didn't really have it all together, not the least of which was her attraction to Michael. But I liked the more sane Jan, and the way Melora Hardin played her, so much that the recent turn toward Crazytown has me scratching my head. (That said, the boob-job gags were all pretty much gold. The Meredith-Kevin-Creed commentary on them almost had me choking.)

So now Jan is fired, Ryan has her job and she's moving in with Michael so she can wear stretch pants and wait for Michael to come home. Michael, meanwhile, just about broke my heart with his speech about Dunder-Mifflin Scranton being his home ("I am going nowhere").

A few other bits and pieces from the finale:

  • Loved the dedication Kevin showed to his who's-hotter list, carrying a notepad with him so that when it struck him that Karen looked good in corporate-style pantsuits, he could jot that down.
  • This probably isn't on any currency-conversion charts, so make a note: The ratio of Schrute Bucks to Stanley Nickels is the same as the ratio of unicorns to leprechauns.
  • Michael, on ideas he has for his new job: "I've never been a big fan of the name Dunder Mifflin. I think we could name it PaperGreat. ... Super Duper Paper? Something like that."
  • Pam: "Jim and I are too similar. ... Maybe someday I'll find my Karen. [Pause] But, not -- a man version."

How'd the season finale sit with you? Do Jim and Pam finally have a shot? Will Michael get his condo back? Can you handle five hour-long Offices next season?