Ladies and gentlemen, may I present the (deserving) 2007 Emmy winner for outstanding guest star in a comedy series, Ed Helms.
It has been great fun to watch Daily Show alumni Steve Carell and Helms play off one another over the past couple months on The Office, but Thursday Helms’ Andy brought his uber-obsequious shtick to new heights (depths?). I didn’t think anyone could make me squirm the way Carell does, but Helms came pretty close: "You said, ‘Ra-da-da-da-doo,’ which is like, right on. And Pam was like, ‘Bleh, bleh, bleh,’ and you were like, ‘Hee-yah — psssht.’ Nailed it.’ [Big, s**t-eating grin]
"I really don’t know a person can have so little self-awareness," Michael says of Andy at one point. Show of hands, everyone who about fell off their couches at that moment.
As usual, the episode, called "The Return," wasn’t exactly about what it was about. Ostensibly we were celebrating the return of Oscar (Oscar Nunez, back from making his Comedy Central show), but it became as much about Dwight and Andy as that. Kudos to Oscar, by the way, for not walking right back out the door after hearing Michael’s plans to celebrate his "Mexicanity."
Also loved seeing Andy’s temper come out again as the phone prank wore on, although I’m a little turned off by the recent mean streak in some of Jim’s pranks. Although if I had an Andy in my office, I might be tempted to do the same. And this looks like it might be beginning of the end for Jim and Karen, which I’m also not sure about. She’s been good for him, I think.
Other bits of goodness from Thursday’s episode:
- Jim: "I liked you better when you were the temp." Ryan: "Me too."
- Angela’s speech about "certain events" and "certain things" was a marvel of nonspecificity. I cannot wait for the episode where she finally unclenches a little.
- "That was an overreaction. Hittin’ the break room — anybody want anything?"
- The boss to whom Dwight presented his three-part resume? NBC president Kevin Reilly.
- Michael’s episode capper: "I don’t want someone to suck up to me because they think I can help their career. I want them to suck up to me because they genuinely love me."
UPDATE: As mentioned in the comments below, NBC posted a "producer’s cut" of the episode online. Here it is.
What did you think of Thursday’s Office? Did you ever dream that anyone could even approach Michael’s level of cluelessness?