Sunday, January 07, 2007

I HEART The Office

First off, let me admit to my obsessive nature...when I love a movie, I watch it a dozen times. In a dozen days. Characters fascinate me, and I can't stop thinking about them. This happens to me all the time--I'm a film buff, a member of BAFTA (the British Academy of Film and Television Arts--it's a long story...), and I watch a lot of movies, go to a lot of advance screenings, oftentimes with Q&A sessions with the filmmakers/cast (and I've got stories! Colin Firth stories...Colin Farrell stories!).

Anyway, it's usually feature films that capture my obsessions, not TV. Since I started writing, I pretty much stopped watching TV, except for LOST. But last December, while visiting my parents for Christmas, I happened to catch an episode of The Office (the American version--I love the British version, too, but that's a whole other story). It was the Christmas episode, and I don't think I've EVER laughed so hard at a television show in my life (my mom, on the other hand, kept saying, "I just don't get it. That's not funny."). So, I started watching regularly. And yeah, it's a funny show, in that squirm-in-your-seat-uncomfortable-funny kind of way. Next thing I knew, I was addicted. I now plan my schedule around Thursday nights.

What *really* surprised me (and hooked me) wasn't the humor, but the touching romantic story that was subtly playing out between the everyman paper salesman Jim Halpert and the engaged-to-someone-else receptionist Pam Beesly. It was one of those unrequited love/friend pining after a friend whose affections were engaged elsewhere stories, which I just adore. Jim and Pam are a modern-day Sam and Diane, and personally I think they are the best TV couple *ever* (strong words, I know!).

The season finale last May was a TOTAL shocker--I was entirely speechless. I waited impatiently for months to see what was going to happen. Not since "Who Shot JR?" have I been so eager for a show's season opener. This season, the show has surprised me in so many ways. This past week's episode "Back from Vacation" made me cry. I'm amazed that a show that's first and foremost a hilarious comedy (starring Steve Carrell, after all!) has so much heart.

So, romantics out there, if you don't watch The Office, I highly suggest you do! You can catch up with the first two seasons on iTunes or on DVD, and there's also lots of Jim/Pam stuff on YouTube -- in fact, for those of you who have missed out, I highly recommend you start here. This user has uploaded something like 20 'episodes' of "The Story of Jim and Pam" (which is basically condensed versions of the show, just showing the Jim/Pam interactions). I'm willing to bet you'll find yourself hooked!

And then you can obsess along with me!


Eve Silver said...

Kristina, The Office sounds great, and I'm sure you're right. If I watch it, I'll be hooked... which is why I won't watch it (at least not until I'm out of deadline hell, LOL!).

Right now, I watch House (don't really love the direction that they've taken the show with the whole obsessed cop storyline), and the original CSI (still love, love, love this show).

Caroline Linden said...

Who shot JR? You remember 'who shot JR?' Weren't you about 5 then, Kristina?

Ann Christopher said...

OMG, Kristina--I LOOOOOOVVVEEE The Office. I think Pam and Jim were made for each other, I think the way they torture Dwight is HYSTERICAL, I think Michael is, as one reviewer wrote, a black hole of need, and I just squirm with uncomfortable laughter through every episode.

As much as I want Pam and Jim to get together, though, I dread it when they do, because the show'll never be the same...


Colleen Gleason said...

Colin Firth stories??? Colin Firth stories???

Why are you holding out on us, Kristi?

Kristina Cook said...

Yea, Ann! Another Office fan!! I'm with you on worrying what will happen when they get Jim/Pam together--because they HAVE to. The British version only ran for two full seasons, plus a special 2 hr. 'special' that wrapped everything up, and the Jim/Pam characters (Tim/Dawn) didn't get together till the very, very end. But the American version is already halfway through season 3, and it looks like they could have a very long run (I hope so!), so I can't figure out how they're going to pull it off. At some point the old 'will they/won't they' will get kind of old and irritating, but on the other hand, it's hard to imagine an end to that delightful sexual tension, stringing us along.

I guess only time will tell!

Wendy Roberts said...

Count me in as another Office fan. Dwight comforting Pam last week just made me roar. I worked in an office many years and can't help feeling the characters on the show are close to people I really worked with.

Ahem. And I also want Colin firth stories!