The Office
Christmas Party

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Christmas Party

Michael and Dwight burst into the office and make a big, noisy, sweaty, yelly show of hauling a giant, freshly-cut evergreen tree into the bullpen. They prop it up into a vertical position, where it turns out to be tall enough to completely disappear at least one of the suspended ceiling tiles. "Merry Christmas!" Michael pants at everyone, flashing a grin like a winded piano.

After the credits, we find Kevin working on trimming the top couple of feet off the tree using a paper cutter. Re-erecting the newly blunt-topped tree, he asks Michael why he got it so big (earning himself a joyful holiday "That's what she said"), and Michael proudly says they'll sell the hacked-off chunk -- "a perfectly good mini-tree" -- to charity. And Dwight gets to work vacuuming up the small pine needle forest beneath the mangled ceiling with a DustBuster, which should only take him about a week.

Jim's showing us what he got Pam for her Secret Santa gift: a cute little teapot, and a whole box of "inside jokes." These include his high school yearbook photo, a hot sauce packet, a little yellow pencil, and also a card, "because Christmas is the time to tell people how you feel." When Jim closes up the box, his expression goes from really excited to kind of nervous at what he's just committed himself to. He doesn't even know the half of how wrong this is going to go.

Angela is riding herd over the party planning committee, which Ryan has been drafted into. He THs, "Her memo said that we need to prepare for every possible disaster. Which to me seems excessive." Wow. Just, wow. Not only has Ryan been here long enough to know better, so has Angela. She hasn't yet figured out that she also needs to plan for impossible disasters? Speaking of whom, Michael comes bounding in with a Santa hat and beard, telling them to double everything, on his tab. In a TH from his office, he explains his generosity by saying it was a tough year, firing Devon and all, but at least he got a bonus of "three thousand G's" for saving the company money. Michael tells the committee that he wants a "Playboy Mansion" party, and he'll be putting the best photo from his digital camera on the cover of the newsletter. Pam reminds him that they can't serve liquor, and Michael takes this with typical bad grace. "Like booze ever killed anybody," he scoffs.

The preparations continue apace. Oscar and Kevin wrestle a desk while Dwight suggests the use of a nonexistent hand truck, and Pam impassively watches Angela wrestle with a cheap plastic tablecloth. And in Michael's office, he's refusing to let Darryl borrow the Santa hat, on the grounds of "Have you ever seen Santa?" Because to Michael, a black Santa is more confusing than a completely self-absorbed one. Not that Michael sees himself that way, of course. Dwight asks to be the elf, which Michael is on board with, "because he has elfish features." Watching at home, Orlando Bloom says, "Hey!"

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