The Office
Branch Wars

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Wing Chun: B- | Grade It Now!
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Branch Wars

Michael interviews that Ben is crazy, and that Scranton is the fun branch, like Animal House. Whereupon we all start to fear this day will end with Michael doing his impression of a zit.

The camera goes nuts a little trying to follow Michael and Dwight as they accost Jim, who's still loitering around while Pam sets up for the FTC. Michael tells Jim that the branch's reputation has been besmirched, so to redeem it, they're going to go out and make a gigantic sale. He's about to leave again when he runs smack into Toby, who's prepared to discuss Forster by putting on a big dumb bowtie and rounding up three delicate teacups -- with saucers, obviously. Michael is so disgusted by the sight of him that he's actually stunned silent for several seconds, but then turns to tell the camera, "That's why people are leaving." I'm pretty sure even the most rock-and-roll people would rather talk about early modern novels with Toby than bounce off the hood of Michael's car. But then, I am an English major.

In Michael's product-placed PT Cruiser, Michael and Dwight take a great deal of pleasure in telling Jim that they're actually not on their way to make a gigantic sale: they're going to pull a prank on the Utica branch. Jim is horrified at the thought of seeing Karen again after all this time. He's probably even less psyched to see her get a rainbow afro wig super-glued to her head, or whatever the hell Michael has in mind.

After the commercials, Jim is still mad. Not that this is the greatest joke in the world or anything, but...show of hands, who's surprised Jim can only dish it out but not take it? Me too. He bitches that he's not going to further piss off his ex-girlfriend with whatever they have in mind, and when he pulls out his cell phone, Dwight snatches it out of his hand and throws it out the window. Jim seriously looks like he's about to plow Michael in the face, and he tensely says that his phone had all the pictures of his brother's new baby on it. Even Dwight is chastened by this.

Cut to: the Scranton trio, poking around on the shoulder, looking for Jim's phone. Soon enough, Jim finds it, and scrapes the dirt off, telling Michael he'll call a cab to pick him up there. Michael tells him he's going to miss the best prank ever. Jim is initially whatever about it, but then his office-honed instincts kick in, and he asks what they have planned. Michael excitedly opens the trunk to show Jim what they've brought: uniforms from the warehouse, silly string, and some gasoline and rubber to make stink bombs. "Or real bombs," says Dwight. Jim gets scared, and tries to talk them out of this notion, at least, but Dwight's already picked up one of the Molotov cocktails that's just been floating around in the trunk this whole time, and Michael grins, "Teach her to offer Stanley more money." I'm pretty sure this is the sort of "prank" that, if someone did it down at my office, would get him sent to Gitmo.

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The Office

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