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"The Office"

By admin Published: February 16, 2007

A great episode for a reason that surprised me, after the jump

Who would think that "The Office" could make people cry? Not laugh-until-you-cry tears but I-am-genuinely-moved tears. Little ones, at least. They came when Michael not only showed up for Pam's art show, not only admired her art, not only saw value both in her and in himself from what she had done -- but in the look in Pam's eyes when she hugged him. Real people having a real moment.

And then there was Chunky.

I wasn't sure about last night's episode when I started watching it (and would have been even more uneasy if I had watched it after "My Name Is Earl" and "30 Rock," neither of which was at its best). Jim pretending to be a vampire? Very funny. (And, in case you missed it, directed by Joss Whedon of "Buffy" and "Angel" fame.) Michael in the business class? More cringing than funny -- and we were coming off Phyllis's wedding, which was an almost nonstop cringe. And the bat was a sideshow.

But the Pam thing played so well. People's indifference to even attending, which suggests that she has moved out of the office loop -- especially with Jim teamed with Karen in the vampire prank. Roy's reaction when he realized no one from the office had come to the show. And then Michael. Too good. Capped by the Chunky joke and, for a great closer, Kelly and Ryan as office-mates.

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