“Finale” is about bringing them all together for one last hurrah, and it works emotionally and comically. Unlike “Goodbye Michael,” which was really farewell Steve Carell, this episode says good-bye to Jim Halpert, not John Krasinski; Stanley Hudson, not Leslie David Baker; and Creed Bratton, not Creed Bratton.
One of my favorite aspects of The Office (both incarnations) is that we are watching sad people. Not damaged in the way the gang from Community are/were, but normal and pathetic. Painfully average. When the show started obtaining some popularity around the second or third season, this aspect kind of floundered. But “Livin’ The Dream” brings it back and moves forward many long-running story lines.
Tonight is the episode of The Office that I’ve been waiting for: “The Farm.” This is the pilot for the defunct Dwight spin-off, the news of which led to the Internet being chock-full of references to the classic Simpsons episode, “The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase.” When NBC decided not to pick up the show, the producers opted to re-purpose it into a conventional episode of The Office. And here we are.
If [Pam] chooses the home of Dunder Mifflin, it will appear like settling and provide a depressing ending to her character. One where she willingly gives up hope for a better, more interesting life in exchange for an eternity of monotony, which she actually complained about in the first episode of this season.
After they elevated Andy to the star, the show and the character suffered tremendously. His unlikeable edges were dulled down to create a milquetoast figure that it was difficult to root for, partly because the show made it so obvious how much they wanted the audience to root for him. But I can’t deny that it is bothersome for the show to have rendered his journey over the past two seasons moot.
In both “Junior Salesman” and “Vandalism,” Brian the Consoling Mic Guy takes an onscreen role. And, over the course of the hour, we learn that he’s incredibly creepy. Disturbingly so. It’s like the second he broke the fourth wall, something triggered in his brain. I hesitate to call it the renowned “perv switch,” but that smile at the end of “Junior Salesman…”
The episode itself was fine and comprised of several small storylines, all of which worked. The title, “Customer Loyalty”, refers once again to Dwight’s plot. Upon learning that Darryl is also leaving Dunder Mifflin for Athlead, he freaks out and accuses Jim of trying to poach everyone from the staff.