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Office Fodder

The Office: Whistleblower Review

Let me just throw this SPOILER ALERT thing up top, but c'mon, it's the season finale, you knew that, right?


OK, let's start with the end of The Office: Whistleblower first.

Holly/Amy Ryan might be coming back! At least, the possibility of that is out there now that Jo Bennett (Kathy Bates) owes Michael a favor for reading a statement to the press about the printer recall.

That could set up a dramatically different Season 7 if Michael has a real possibility at love, a real chance at happiness, in what could be Steve Carell's final year.

But let's finish Season 6 first, starting with...


As someone who works in the news business, I greatly enjoyed the intro. At the end of last episode, Michael had to give a statement to the press denying certain Sabre printers catch on fire (despite Andy finding out that they do, in fact, do just that). Now Michael is loving watching his news clip, and wants to bump it up to number 1 on the local TV station.

"We cannot let the pedophile win again." - Michael

But of course the staff gets distracted by a cute otter video. And I can validate this by saying I've written many news stories that get bumped down Top 10 lists because of cute animal stories. Spot on.


So Jo Bennett and her Great Danes are back, miffed (well, just Jo... I doubt the dogs care) that the story leaked about the printers. Immediately, people suspect Andy, but Andy says that's silly, because Bernards are known for silencing whistleblowers.

"Oh, Mr. Bernard, Oh Mr. Bernard, who have you silenced today?" - Andy

Michael vouches for everyone, but Jo isn't having it. As a former prison guard, she has a tried and true strategy to locate anally-placed packages get the truth out: Innocent people want justice for the person at fault, guilty people want mercy. Remember this when you play your The Office: Clue set (which, by the way, I now own.) Kathy Bates has been a bit hit-or-miss for me on this show so far - sometimes she fits right in, sometimes it's too much corporate forced into the scene. But in this episode, it seems apropos, considering the circumstances. And her mannerisms as Jo Bennett - Southern, polite but controlling, stern but not mean - work well here.

Meanwhile, Nick the IT guy, or Big Brother in this case, is searching computer files as part of the investigation, forcing Kevin to dash to his computer (he probably has porn on it), but it's too late.

"Sometimes, I run. I'm, uh, a runner." - Kevin

As it turns out, Darryl, Pam and Kelly are all guilty of tipping off the press for one reason or another. Actually, Kelly's reason is obvious, as she puts it.

"I'm a talker." - Kelly

And that leads us to the first time Ryan has made me laugh in a long time. His "Woof" idea of merging all social media, which he demonstrates and has his IM, fax, phone, cell phone and e-mail go off at once, capped by Erin telling him he has a Woof on line 1. That is definitely something Ryan would think of, and, for once, it's not douchey.

Michael gives Jo the silent treatment, and she tells him to "come with her," which leads Michael to think he's in trouble.

As they sit on her private plane, though, she confesses to him she wishes she didn't turn out to be the kind of person she ended up - CEO of a trifling company - and that confessing her company did something bad will just kill her. At this point, I'm not sure if she's hamming it up to make Michael take the fall, but when she laughs at Michael's "Shirley/surely" Airplane joke, you realize she really does appreciate him doing it.

Back at the office, Gabe finishes up his pointless investigation. He blames Andy, Jim says not so fast, Creed blames Gabe and Angela - wait, the coin flip says Angela - and it's all up in the air until IT Nick come back for some odd reason.

He's mad no one remembers his name (dude, I barely remembered you were on this show) and proceeds to spill dirty IT laundry - i.e., what's on eveyryone's computers - such as Darryl's Facebook page, Ryan's crappy photography and, oh yes, Andy's e-mail to the Scranton Tribune (who must love this episode, honestly).

But, as I said at the top, it all ends up OK, with Michael reading a statement, almost giddy at the opportunity to stand up for the company and save his employees, and Jo promising to take a look at bringing Holly back (but will she come back?).

In the subplot:

Jo tells Dwight he should look into buying real estate as a good way to invest. Dwight immediately jumps on the idea, and eventually decides to put in an offer to buy Scranton Business Park. Dwight as Sabre's landlord? Delicious.

And that is that for Season 6. I'll have a wrap-up of the season and a poll on it soon, but can you believe it's over?

World's Best Episode:
I rarely give these out, and in fact, I'm trying to remember the last time I did. Maybe the wedding episode? But I need to, and it's not because this was the funniest Office episode - it was funny, for sure, but not the funniest - and not because it's the most original - Corporate coming in and causing a ruckus is basically a plotline for all of season 5.
But it did do many things well, and all considering this uneven season, it was a delight to finish it off with me liking Michael again, laughing at/with Kevin, pulling for Andy, not resenting Jim and Pam, kinda liking Ryan and finding humor in everything from Meredith's van to Andy's goofy grin after Erin touched his leg. That's the Office I like. That's the Office I know.
Nice touch:

  • Pam's disconcerted glance when Jo slaps the article on top of Pam's old painting of the building.

  • Toby's writing a mystery novel

  • Meredith having a wheel boot in her van

  • David Wallace also being a leak

  • Erin supporting Andy for being courageous, and the two having a nice moment together that reminds us that romance is still going

Best quotes:
"... Now I think I might not." - Kevin

"Does that make me a hero?"- Andy
"No, it does not!" - Kevin, off-camera.

What did you think? Leave a comment, and vote in the poll...And follow me on Twitter @officetvfodder

Posted by Andy Shaw on May 20, 2010 10:57 PM
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