Author Topic: The Office Christmas finale  (Read 4822 times)

Dr Rock

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #60 on: July 31, 2020, 09:05:10 AM »
I almost started a thread asking what people would advise Tim if he was their mate. She strings him along.

Hmm. How long has the 'Tim likes Dawn but Dawn's with Lee' triangle been going on? We come into the show and it seems to have been the status quo for a while.

Lisa Jesusandmarychain

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #61 on: July 31, 2020, 09:08:54 AM »
Wow, never realised David Brent was added to the Middle Earth universe. Quite an ambitious crossover.

It worked when Tim played Villanelle The Hobbit.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #62 on: July 31, 2020, 09:21:37 AM »
The moment Gervais embraced his new audience. Surface-level shit delivered by a two-dimensional character. And then when you need some depth just have another character say "he's alright really. Actually he's the kindest, wisest, most well-hung and rational man I've ever had Richard Dawkin's good grace to encounter."

The most cringe inducing thing in Life on the Road is that Doc Brown, as the rapper Brent has strung along with him, is just so much better than Gervais. With only half the screen time and saddled with Gervais' cut-paste "make cringe face/say that Brent is 'alright actually'" material, he just acts circles around him, and I think Gervais is acutely aware of this, because there's a slight panicked expression on his face whenever they share the screen.

madhair60

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #63 on: July 31, 2020, 10:00:15 AM »
You sound as much of a pain in the arse as he does in this story.

Horseshit. Fuck you on about mate

Brundle-Fly

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #64 on: July 31, 2020, 10:31:06 AM »
<Hand Solo's awful associates anecdote>

I think that's why so many people have to leave their hometowns because of dyed in the wool local arseholes. But there's nothing you can do about numpty work colleagues or being stuck on a table with them at wedding receptions.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #65 on: July 31, 2020, 10:42:23 AM »
Horseshit. Fuck you on about mate

Yeah thats such a weird reading of the whole situation from US. So complaining about people who consistently behave as massive arseholes in social situations makes you as bad as them, what?

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #66 on: July 31, 2020, 03:29:55 PM »
Wow, never realised David Brent was added to the Middle Earth universe. Quite an ambitious crossover.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bg8NS6s0fkw

(Hope that link works in the UK...)

bomb_dog

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #67 on: August 01, 2020, 09:28:00 AM »
It did, thanks for posting. Bit hit and miss as per SNL-usual but worth seeing.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #68 on: August 01, 2020, 07:35:11 PM »
Yeah thats such a weird reading of the whole situation from US. So complaining about people who consistently behave as massive arseholes in social situations makes you as bad as them, what?

Yeah, I don't see what I possibly did wrong, but there's always someone on here who will use it as an excuse to have a go. I literally only put up with their banter for as long as I did because I was trying to get my friend to go home to bed because her boyfriend kept ringing and she had work early in the morning (she literally got reported for having alcohol on her breath a few weeks before and could have got the sack), she shouldn't be out drinking to past 3am with that pair of cunts. All my presumptions about what a cunt he and his mates are from the little I've stomached being around them in the past were justified when threatened to have me beaten up for not finding him hilarious. He and his mate have both been up in court for some dodgy sexual allegations as well completely separately, they seem to buy girls lots of drinks and get them paralytic and take advantage, but they get away with it as they're friends with the bar staff because they're both always at that fucking venue which is why I and several friends stopped going there.

Anyway, I enjoy Finchy's portrayal because he comes across as a real-life cunt, there's one in every pub, life and soul of the party if you're amused by unoriginal musings barked at you incessantly and you better laugh or the cunt'll give you evils and threaten you.

BritishHobo

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #69 on: August 01, 2020, 08:03:18 PM »
It's not even the most unrealistic bit in The Office. That will forever be his motivational talk where everyone in the audience just sits there, even though they are aware it is being filmed and some of them (presumably) have been sent by their bosses to take part. IT. WOULD NOT HAVE HAPPENED.

I always found the Slough(?) lot to be unrealistically awkward in series 2. I think it's when David does his introductory talk or takes them out for lunch - he's excruciating, but surely anyone even vaguely human would at least give some fake laughter or half-hearted conversation rather than just blank him. Bit of a precursor to the way that everyone in Life's Too Short HATED Warwick Davis on sight and immediately treated him with a furious contempt for no reason. Warwick asking Doc Brown to ring a doorbell, and Doc going 'YOU'VE HAD A SHIT ACTING CAREER AND EVERYONE HATES YOU YOU FUCKING EWOK CUNT'.

Conversely I really love the Brent ending in the Christmas specials BECAUSE it's grey. He's still been a desperate bellend for a long time, a mean coward who would throw others under the bus for an easy laugh - or like the horrible way he treats the unattractive date - but there's a nuanced redemption in there. I like the clumsiness and vague hypocrisy of his 'fuck off'. He's not transformed into a great witty hero, and he's railing against a sense of humour he's happily taken part in for years, but there's a glimmer of hope that he can learn to be better. As has been said, you contrast that with the full-Derek ending of Life on the Road, where he's shouting HERRO I'M HO LEE FUK in the middle of his office and then all the ladies cry about what a good good wonderful man he is, and it's worlds apart.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #70 on: August 01, 2020, 09:46:43 PM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bg8NS6s0fkw

(Hope that link works in the UK...)

Yeah, the link works for me! Thanks for bringing it to my attention :)

Also, with regards to the couple of mentions of realism in the UK Office, I always thought that the end scene of the camera voyeuristically watching Finchy having sex with the Welsh (I think she was Welsh, from memory?) lady from Swindon branch very unrealistic. If what we're watching is meant to be the same fly-on-the-wall documentary that would've been broadcast in full as-is in their world (i.e. what we're watching is the final "documentary" product), then surely there'd be no chance in hell that scene would've made the cut? Even if the camera caught the act accidentally, I'm sure it still would've been left on the cutting room floor, and not actually broadcast? Because what the documentary makers are doing is effectively broadcasting an unsimulated sex scene; a line that even a show like Love Island doesn't cross in 2019, never mind a pedestrian documentary about an office back in 2002.

From what I understand the US Office barely clings on to the idea that everything you are seeing is via the documentary makers' cameras for most of its run, but from what I remember the UK Office did try to keep up to that concept for its run, therefore that scene stuck out like a sore thumb.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #71 on: August 02, 2020, 08:27:55 AM »
I think any of the scenes with the warehouse chaps being derogatory surely would be cut.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #72 on: August 02, 2020, 09:08:50 AM »
Although the gruff 'nearly done' is quite funny.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #73 on: August 03, 2020, 10:55:06 AM »

From what I understand the US Office barely clings on to the idea that everything you are seeing is via the documentary makers' cameras for most of its run, but from what I remember the UK Office did try to keep up to that concept for its run, therefore that scene stuck out like a sore thumb.

this always stuck out for me in modern family. why are they always doing to the camera bits. are they making a documentary? they've never mentioned a documentary? Oh its just simplistic exposition...

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #74 on: August 03, 2020, 11:54:07 AM »
this always stuck out for me in modern family. why are they always doing to the camera bits. are they making a documentary? they've never mentioned a documentary? Oh its just simplistic exposition...

And the same reason why despite Parks and Rec often being very funny, it always feels a bit lazy to me.

notjosh

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #75 on: August 03, 2020, 02:57:20 PM »
It's not even the most unrealistic bit in The Office. That will forever be his motivational talk where everyone in the audience just sits there, even though they are aware it is being filmed and some of them (presumably) have been sent by their bosses to take part. IT. WOULD NOT HAVE HAPPENED.

It's a stitch-up. The production crew have had a word with the audience beforehand and asked them not to react to his speech as it will "ruin the take". The shots of them staring at him blankly are inserts shot before/after Brent is in the room to ramp up the awkwardness. It's pretty obvious throughout the series that the producers have edited it to wring maximum comedy value out of Brent, as he points out himself in the Christmas special.

The redemption in the final episode is partly Brent having a small epiphany and partly the producers cutting him a bit of slack after he only agreed to appear again if they didn't "keep making me look like a tit". The date to the Christmas party was probably cast specifically so she would get along with him and humanise him a bit.

The "fuck off Finchy" moment works because Finchy has had two years of being treated as a local legend in pubs and clubs around Slough, especially after his LEGENDARY car-park shag in the nightclub episode (which racked up dozens of complaints and a page 7 splash in the Daily Mail). Both Neil and he had been told that the Christmas special would focus more around them, with Brent as a cameo appearance, so they felt emboldened in taking the piss out of him. Having Brent reject this dynamic was therefore genuinely unexpected, and as they didn't realise they were being filmed at this point they didn't have the nous to respond more quickly. Finchy of course made a face-saving remark a couple of seconds later but it didn't make the cut as the producer wanted to give Brent a minor victory.

The cameras were in the taxi afterwards as they told Dawn they needed some B-roll of her leaving the party. Once on the move, they suggested that she open her Secret Santa - Tim having already confided to producers what was inside.

Also, the stapler in the jelly was put together by a runner, at Tim's request. And 'Gareth Keenan Invetigates' was a typo by a junior researcher after Gareth dictated the signs to them. He is still fuming that they implied it was his ("I was in the territorial army for three years, and we don't make mistakes. Can't afford to.")

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #76 on: August 03, 2020, 03:19:43 PM »
I heard that big Keith was told by one of the producers what a bum bag is called in america only minutes before he advised Dawn the same.

Lisa Jesusandmarychain

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #77 on: August 03, 2020, 03:24:01 PM »
One of those women what were David's unsuccessful dates was told beforehand  by the wily old documentary crew to get the phrase " My dead mother's breasts" into the conversation within the first three minutes of them meeting each other. Remarkably, she pulled this off, with time to spare. The doc crew lads were all dead chuffed with her.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #78 on: August 03, 2020, 03:32:44 PM »
Brent bringing a dog into the office was unscripted and turned out to be a sly in-joke from Gervais about his future script ideas. The dog's name? Derek Afterlife.

BritishHobo

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #79 on: August 03, 2020, 03:47:31 PM »
this always stuck out for me in modern family. why are they always doing to the camera bits. are they making a documentary? they've never mentioned a documentary? Oh its just simplistic exposition...

I'm sure when it first started the setup was described as being that it was being filmed by a documentary manager filmmaker who had stayed with the family as an exchange student when he was younger, but this was then never mentioned again. I've not watched the final season (or about three seasons beforehand - anything that came after the horrible copout for Jay's homophobia in the wedding episode), so I dunno whether they pulled a US Office and paid things off at the end.

I always liked this Onion article: 'The Office' Ends As Documentary Crew Gets All The Footage It Needs:

Quote
"In retrospect, we really over-shot this thing by an enormous margin," said Sheffield, adding that he likely had more than enough good material after filming a British workplace from 2001 to 2003.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #80 on: August 04, 2020, 10:08:16 AM »
II've not watched the final season (or about three seasons beforehand - anything that came after the horrible copout for Jay's homophobia in the wedding episode), so I dunno whether they pulled a US Office and paid things off at the end.


nah they didn't bother. i was hoping they would kill off Gloria's son at least for the finale.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #81 on: August 04, 2020, 03:35:11 PM »
Hmm. How long has the 'Tim likes Dawn but Dawn's with Lee' triangle been going on? We come into the show and it seems to have been the status quo for a while.

The way Lee violently reacts to Tim dancing with Dawn - a genuinely horrible, uncomfortable moment - suggests that he's long been aware that they fancy each other. He's put up with it because he doesn't see Tim as a threat - plus he's too insensitive and self-involved to pick up on the fact that Dawn might actually be in love with Tim - but that was presumably the first time he'd witnessed them being physically intimate with each other. For the first time he feels threatened and lashes out.

So yeah, that triangle must've been in place for some time before the cameras started rolling.

The actor who played Lee is really good, I think. Lee is a total prick, but yer man never overplays it. He's a convincing alpha male arsehole who undermines people via passive-aggression; a sort of outwardly affable version of Finchy, but just as much of a cunt.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #82 on: August 04, 2020, 03:48:43 PM »
The actor who played Lee is really good, I think. Lee is a total prick, but yer man never overplays it. He's a convincing alpha male arsehole who undermines people via passive-aggression; a sort of outwardly affable version of Finchy, but just as much of a cunt.

He really is very good. He keeps putting down Tim during the office party, but he does it passively enough to make it seem like he's just kidding.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #83 on: August 04, 2020, 04:33:23 PM »
He really is very good. He keeps putting down Tim during the office party, but he does it passively enough to make it seem like he's just kidding.

Staggering to think that Gervais was once partly responsible for a show capable of triggering an interesting discussion about nuanced characterisation.

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #84 on: August 04, 2020, 04:55:34 PM »
After Life had that bit where the bloke kept posting his letters in a dog-shit bin

but to ensure the joke landed Gervais sourced a dogshit bin that looks exactly like a postbox and ensured it was painted postbox-red. #makesyouthink

Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #85 on: August 05, 2020, 02:41:02 PM »
I always found the Slough(?) lot to be unrealistically awkward in series 2. I think it's when David does his introductory talk or takes them out for lunch - he's excruciating, but surely anyone even vaguely human would at least give some fake laughter or half-hearted conversation rather than just blank him.


I think it was the Swindon lot. There's the scene where he takes them to lunch and tries to have conversation and they're all just being horribly rude and uncommunicative. Reminds me of meetup.com events when you wonder why they've even bothered coming along.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #86 on: August 05, 2020, 03:02:13 PM »
Tim and Dawn are the only characters who react realistically to David's embarrassing antics. They often look uncomfortable and exasperated, but sometimes they force a smile or laugh. Because you would, wouldn't you? David is a terrible person in many ways, but he's essentially harmless. Anyone with a shred of decency would indulge him to a certain extent.

The Swindon lot aren't realistic at all, I agree. Surely at first they'd feign polite amusement? Series 2 of The Office is very funny and often quite brilliant, but you can tell that Gervais and Merchant thought to themselves, "People liked the awkwardness in series 1, let's ramp that up."

Notjosh, that's a great rationalisation of some of the issues we're discussing. Makes a lot of sense. The Finchy thing had never occurred to me before, but you're absolutely right. He'd be regarded (by cunts) as a LOL BANTZ LEDGE after the original series went out, it would've emboldened him. Neil, too, would probably have become a bit of a star - the cool, handsome, reasonable boss who had to deal with that wally David Brent. Unlike David, they would've been happy with the way they came across. 

Cuellar

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #87 on: August 05, 2020, 03:09:20 PM »
The Swindon lot aren't realistic at all, I agree. Surely at first they'd feign polite amusement?

I dunno - they've had to up sticks and move to Slough (or at least extend their commute significantly) and now they're saddled with this pain in the arse boss. I think they'd be naturally diffident and defensive about all the changes. Your old identity gone, your old routines, all changed. Office workers are nothing if not creatures of habit and any change to those habits is generally vigorously resisted.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #88 on: August 05, 2020, 03:27:24 PM »
I dunno - they've had to up sticks and move to Slough (or at least extend their commute significantly) and now they're saddled with this pain in the arse boss. I think they'd be naturally diffident and defensive about all the changes. Your old identity gone, your old routines, all changed. Office workers are nothing if not creatures of habit and any change to those habits is generally vigorously resisted.

Who would move to Slough in order to maintain their job at a paper merchants? In hindsight that makes no sense at all.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: The Office Christmas finale
« Reply #89 on: August 05, 2020, 03:31:39 PM »
I dunno - they've had to up sticks and move to Slough (or at least extend their commute significantly) and now they're saddled with this pain in the arse boss. I think they'd be naturally diffident and defensive about all the changes. Your old identity gone, your old routines, all changed. Office workers are nothing if not creatures of habit and any change to those habits is generally vigorously resisted.

Yeah, good point. They're still really arsey to David, though. After a couple of days in his company, fair enough, but you'd sort of pretend to laugh at/with him on the first day?

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