By now you're probably familiar with Michael, Jim, Pam, Dwight, Andy, Oscar, Kevin, Creed, Meredith, et al in Scranton's Dunder Mifflin paper supply company. This fourth season kicks off with Jim and Pam officially dating, Michael hitting Meredith with his car, and Dwight mercy-killing Sprinkles the cat.
The first four episodes are hour-long "special episodes." I found that even in the longer format, the show still holds up, however I do feel that one hour is about the longest you can run a single "set up." My wife and I watched these episodes, one full disc at a time, so it's easy to watch hour upon hour of the Office in one sitting, however we liked when we'd get to a new story line. We also watched each and every deleted scene. I have to point out that the deleted scenes are just as funny as the rest of the episode. They're taken out for time. If nothing else, I recommend this box set to at least watch the deleted scenes. They're absolutely hilarious, and it's almost a crime that they weren't broadcast. I find some of the deleted scenese are my favorite scenes, and people don't know what I'm talking about when I recall a particular episode.
My Picks Seriously, each episode is hilarious, and some of the best scripted material on television these days. The jokes are fresh without being dated, they're accessible to a wide audience without being dumbed down or formulaic, but my absolute favorites are:
Fun Run (1)- After Michael accidentally runs over Meredith, he organizes a 5K to raise money for rabies research.
Dunder Mifflin Infinity (2)- You must watch the deleted scenes showing Michael's rant on the Blackberry. This, to me, is some of the funniest material all season.
Money (4)- Jim and Pam stay over night at Dwight's Bed and Breakfast. It's great getting a more in depth behind-the-scene's view of the Dwight Family Beet Farm. Again, you must watch the deleted scenes. Everybody poops.
Local Ad (5)- I'm a sucker for the local ad that Micheal spear-headed. I'm also a sucker for the "Break me off a piece of that FANCY FEAST" bit. Hilarious.
Dinner Party (9) - This was in rib-hurting hilarious. Between the "what do you want to do babe?" and the "Three hours from now, or 3 hours from earlier, like 4:00?" exchange, this one is a classic. It was nominated for an Emmy, and the shooting script is included in the box set.
Goodbye Toby (14) - The big season closer is cringe worthy on so many levels, but the real kicker is the "Kevin as 'Special Person'" story line. This is by far the funniest bit of the season, because it instantly makes all the other episodes that came before it even funnier on repeated viewings. I'm also anxious to see how Michael and Holly's relationship develops.
Those are my absolute favorites, but I also loved the rise and fall of former temp-turned exec Ryan, Michael's long reaching financial problems, and the Dwight-Angela-Andy love triangle. Even if you enjoyed these the first time when they originally aired, they are just as funny on second viewing, and the deleted scenes keep it fresh.
I watched all of the deleted scenes and the bloopers. The funniest blooper is when one of the camera men runs into Pam's desk, we get a shot of how the set up really works with filming this series.
I can't recommend this box set enough. It's perfect for any Office fan, and though first-time viewers may take awhile to dive in at this stage of the game (seriously, who out there hasn't been watching?) This set is for everyone.
New episodes of The Office start on NBC on September 25th. You can purchase this box set right now on Amazon.com