When considering television of the last ten years, perhaps even the last twenty, it’s hard not to think about The Office. Office politics, pranks and more combine to bring us this look at an American workplace, and one that’s hopefully not like your own. Our friends out at Universal sent a copy of “The Office Season Nine: The Farewell Season” our way for review, and the capstone season proves what made this series so long-running.
“The Office” is set up like a documentary revolving around the events at the Dunder-Mifflin paper company. It’s based on the British television series of the same name, and focuses not only on the events, but also on the personalities that work at Dunder-Mifflin. There’s a lot going on in this office, and only occasionally does it have anything to do with with work. This place is crammed full of bizarre personalities, and something new is going on here most every day.
As is commonly the case with something like “The Office,” there’s going to be a variety of different things going on here, and not all of them will have comic impact for everyone. Thankfully, there’s going to be so much going on in here that something’s likely to strike just about anyone’s funny bone properly. Those who don’t much care for stupid humor will get a nice slice of office humor instead, and those who’d rather forget that there’s an office to go into will get stupid humor, relationship humor, and an assortment of other strange mixed bits going on in the whole pile.
It’s important to note here that to get the full experience, you have to take several episodes at once, at a minimum so that the full range of potential topics can be addressed. It’s actually kind of impressive how broad a range this show has; it’s easy to look at “The Office” and think it’s a colossal one-note joke. But no…no, “The Office” has a much, much broader range than most might expect. Yet at the same time, some of the jokes have a disturbing tendency to go on too long. I’ve seen some jokes that could have easily been cut back by a quarter of their running time, potentially even more, but they went on far too long. This isn’t always the case, of course–some of “The Office”‘s long-running jokes are quite funny–but those that wear out their welcome do so in a big way.
The whole of “The Office” meanwhile is mostly funny with some occasional clunkers, which indeed is a metaphor for most sitcoms, especially those that have lasted a long time. The series does put up more than its share of laughs–the entirety of the season does pretty well–and though not everything in “The Office Season Nine: The Farewell Season” will hit a chord, the end results will be generally favorable. I’ve seen better shows, of course, but this did pretty well for a nine-year run, and one that should suit most comedy fans.
Special features include a set of audio options, your choice of English or Spanish subtitles, a set of deleted scenes, a blooper reel, a featurette on the overall history of “The Office,” a table read of the finale, a version of Andy’s dialogue involving auto-tune, and a behind the scenes panel discussion of the office.
All told, “The Office Season Nine: The Farewell Season” will be reasonably sound comedy going over so many different fields that it will be hard not to find something to laugh at. While not every joke will hit, at least some of them will, and though a shotgun approach to comedy may not sound the greatest, this one will do the job.