July 13, 2021
EP. 84 — Business Trip with Rich Sommer
Today we’re breaking down Business Trip. The ladies kick off this episode by interviewing Rich Sommer, who played Alex, Pam’s art school friend. Rich shares what it was like to play Alex and navigate being a character that Office fans were afraid was going to get in between Jim and Pam. Afterwards, the ladies breakdown Business Trip. Michael, Oscar and Andy go on a business trip to Winnipeg, Canada, while everyone back at the office count down the days until Pam comes home from art school. Wendi McLendon-Covey sends in clips sharing her experience playing concierge Marie, Jenna shares some fun facts about Winnipeg and Angela deems which character is the “Office Fun Stopper” and surprise, it’s not Angela Martin.
Check out Wendi McLendon-Covey’s podcast, Generation Ripe: https://www.generationripe.com
84 — Business Trip with Rich Sommer
OFFICE084-20210610-BusinessTrip v06 CJ.mp3
[00:00:03] Jenna I’m Jenna Fischer.
[00:00:04] Angela And I’m Angela Kinsey.
[00:00:06] Jenna We were on The Office together.
[00:00:07] Angela And we’re best friends.
[00:00:08] Jenna And now we’re doing the ultimate Office rewatch podcast just for you.
[00:00:12] Angela Each week we will break down an episode of The Office and give exclusive behind the scenes stories that only two people who were there can tell you.
[00:00:19] Jenna We’re the Office Ladies. Hello.
[00:00:25] Angela Hi you guys.
[00:00:25] Jenna Alright, today we’re talking about Business Trip. But first-
[00:00:31] Angela We have a fantastic interview for you.
[00:00:33] Jenna Yes, we are going to be talking with Rich Sommer
[00:00:37] Angela who played Alex. Art School Alex.
[00:00:40] Jenna I know. We love Rich. We’re good friends with Rich in real life.
[00:00:45] Angela Yes. My stepson and Rich’s daughter, Bea, are in a book club. You guys, they meet every week.
[00:00:49] Jenna It’s the cutest thing.
[00:00:50] Angela It’s the cutest thing.
[00:00:51] Jenna You might know Rich Sommer, because he played Harry Crane on all seven seasons of Mad Men. And at that same time, he was doing his arc on The Office as Pam’s art school friend.
[00:01:04] Angela Friend? Questionmark? And Jenna and Rich spent a ton of time together filming all those scenes and became really good friends.
[00:01:11] Jenna We did. We just had to talk to him. We wanted to hear his side of the story of filming that crazy scene with the little Bluetooth earpieces from Customer Survey. We talked about it last week with Stephen Merchant.
[00:01:25] Angela Yeah, we needed Rich’s take on that.
[00:01:27] Jenna We really did.
[00:01:27] Angela And we talk all things The Office for Alex. And here is that interview.
[00:01:36] Jenna Rich Sommer, welcome to Office Ladies.
[00:01:38] Angela Hi, Rich!
[00:01:39] Rich Sommer Thank you. Hi, Angela and Jenna.
[00:01:43] Jenna Oh, my gosh. When we post the photo from this interview, Rich looks so professional,
[00:01:49] Rich Sommer I can’t believe you’re saying that- this- I am in I am in a teeny tiny box. I just have a wide angle camera that makes it look cool.
[00:01:56] Angela I know. But you have that you have like the stuff that looks like egg, egg carton, you know what I mean? You have like the real deal sound stuff.
[00:02:04] Rich Sommer That’s ten dollars at a foam place in Burbank that I went to across from the old Toys’R’Us.
[00:02:08] Jenna We probably should have gone there.
[00:02:11] Angela Maybe we should have gone there.
[00:02:12] Jenna Well, you text us about it later when we get done?
[00:02:15] Rich Sommer Yes, I will.
[00:02:17] Jenna I also want to share that as we were setting up this Zoom, my microphone broke, so I’m using a backup microphone, so I probably sound the worst of all of us. Rich is going to sound the best. You look the most professional.
[00:02:31] Angela Mm hmm. Rich is what matters. You’re what matters. Rich, we’re here for you we’re excited to talk to you.
[00:02:37] Jenna We are.
[00:02:38] Angela Rich, we always ask everyone on the show how they got their job on The Office. Did you audition for the part? Do you have a story? We have heard that Mindy was lobbying very hard for you. Did you know Mindy?
[00:02:49] Rich Sommer To my recollection, Mindy and I met at the SAG Awards when you guys and the Mad Men cast were nominated, and Mindy was a fan of Mad Men and came up to me. And I was so excited to to meet her. And we had chatted maybe a couple of times, but she came up to me and said, hey, I’m writing a part with you in mind on the show. Would that be OK if I-.
[00:03:11] Angela Oh, my gosh.
[00:03:12] Rich Sommer And I was like, yes, because, you know, like everybody else, The Office was one of my favorite shows on TV. So it was a really exciting thing to have, you know, an actor, writer, producer from another show- any show- say that to you. But to have it be one of your your favorite shows that you are so excited to even step into that world, it was it was incredibly special. Yes.
[00:03:37] Angela That is so cool.
[00:03:39] Jenna So is that what happened? They just offered you the role after she had written it?
[00:03:44] Rich Sommer Yeah. They reached out and offered it. And I had a friend of mine who I hadn’t told him yet about that. And and he said, oh, I just auditioned for The Office. And I was like, oh, that’s awesome. I’m hoping to audition for them as well. And he said, yeah, it’s for this part, I guess Pam goes to art school and she’s going to meet some guy at art school. And I was like, oh, good, good, good. And in my head, I knew what Mindy had said and we hadn’t finalized anything yet. And you know how these things work in the business. They’ll keep auditioning even if they have an offer out to someone or in conversation with someone, they’ll keep auditioning other people. I’m usually on the auditioning end of that where I’m throwing an audition down a hole rather than, you know, being the one that’s actually being considered. But this was one of those rare times. So as soon as the offer came through officially, I, I was I accepted immediately. But yes, it was I, I, I did audition for The Office a time or two with Alison Jones, but I didn’t get those roles. And then this came through and it was just an offer.
[00:04:49] Jenna Well, Rich, you mentioned that you met Mindy at a SAG Awards party. Something people should know, I guess, is just that the cast of The Office and the cast of Mad Men, we kind of glommed on to each other. We were on the rise at the same time, and we were kind of experiencing the same thing of being both casts that were basically unknown actors suddenly on these really popular shows. And so we would go around to all of these events together and we all became really good friends.
[00:05:23] Rich Sommer It was a really sort of spectacular, odd marriage between the shows, because we we ended up, like you say, our groups, because of the way the SAG Awards work in particular, is the entire cast of each show is seated together at one or two tables, depending on the size of the group. And, you know, and then at the party, there’s usually like there’s this corner for Mad Men and this area for The Office. And every show sort of has an area and our areas often ended up being near each other and at least ended up being sort of shared real estate. It was very it was a very is a very cool relationship between the groups.
[00:06:03] Jenna Yeah. Some of my favorite memories from that time are our casts hanging together. That was really cool.
[00:06:10] Angela I remember people watching at the Mad Men party- there was a Mad Men like afterparty and Oscar Nunez and I sat on a couch and we were side barring as everyone walked by. We’re like look at this guy, check that guy out.
[00:06:25] Rich Sommer Those Mad Men after parties sometimes, I mean, every show has sort of… The people that you’re always like, I can’t believe they watch our show and I know you guys had that, too. It was very strange times.
[00:06:40] Jenna I’m curious, what were you told about the role of Alex before you came in? Did you get anything to read? And were you told specifically that you were an art school friend, or you were a possible love interest? How was this role pitched to you?
[00:07:00] Rich Sommer Well, this is this is going to be this is this is the meaty part of the conversation, I suppose. I – the way it was pitched to me was, you know, this was the beginning of season five, obviously. And the way it was pitched to me was that it would be a- now, I should also clarify, especially if Mindy is listening, I’m not saying that Mindy pitched me anything. It was conversational. It was just sort of like we we think this is a character who’s going to be throughout this season. We think it’s a character that’s going to be kind of like Rashida’s character was where it might be a little bit of another road bump for Jim and Pam. So when it started, that was definitely what was in my mind. But we filmed scenes that didn’t make it into the show. And I started to kind of put together that the the response from the audience were so- because your show, how long in advance did you guys shoot and then air?
[00:08:00] Jenna I would say only three to four weeks maybe. There was a pretty tight turnaround.
[00:08:04] Angela About a month.
[00:08:04] Rich Sommer It felt really tight. Yeah. It was enough time or a short enough time I should say that the audience response to my first appearance was had landed before I was filming Customer Survey and the they were not pleased. They did not like Alex.
[00:08:24] Angela They were not pleased. They did not want to see Pam like with anyone but Jim. Oh man.
[00:08:31] Rich Sommer No. And who could blame them after what they had been through for four seasons. Who could blame them.
[00:08:36] Angela I know.
[00:08:37] Jenna Well, you have very kind of flirty eyes in your first scenes at art school. You’re very flirty. And you’re right. Those scenes aired and all of a sudden Tiki Bar is on the cutting room floor. Right?
[00:08:51] Angela There is a whole Alex storyline with Pam. Actually, the whole Pam art storyline is in deleted scenes. I watch the deleted scenes for the podcast, and every week I’m like, Jenna. Oh, my gosh. There’s this scene in this scene and one in the hallway and at a bar and here. And she’s like, I know.
[00:09:10] Jenna How did it feel to watch those scenes get cut week to week? Did anyone warn you?
[00:09:17] Rich Sommer As far as how it felt? Look, I am very- I consider myself fortunate that I have a fairly… I don’t know, a comfortable ability to to to see where things fit in story wise and I could feel, from the moment we were- the second anybody said, this feels weird, this is too much, too much consternation for Jim and Pam, I agreed. I mean, again, I was a fan from the beginning. Now, I would have loved to have gotten to be around more, but I also wasn’t going to be greedy. I was I remain delighted that I had the parts that I had. I do think it’s a funny part of Office lore because it seems clear to me at least that this was a sort of aborted storyline, that they kind of cut bait when they could. And that was I don’t know. I just think it’s how I feel about it is that it’s a very funny, interesting way to have been a part of the Office legacy.
[00:10:27] Angela Well, I was bummed that you never came to the actual set because we never got to hang out on set and you and Jenna would have stories and we were missing Jenna. You know, Jenna was who I had lunch with every day. And I was like, gosh, why can’t Alex just, you know, show up with Pam at work one day? Of course, that would have completely blown up the storyline, but we were sad you were never in the actual bullpen.
[00:10:51] Jenna Should we talk about this insane scene that we filmed for Customer Survey with Stephen Merchant? First of all, did you crap your pants when you found out Stephen Merchant was directing? Because I did. I did poop myself.
[00:11:06] Rich Sommer Yep. Yes. Yeah, it was upsetting. I mean, it was it was a 10 percent exciting 90 percent ugly.
[00:11:14] Angela I had no idea, Rich, how many different ways you guys did this scene. You know, we got the scripts and all the alts from James Kerry, and I could not believe it. Jenna told me how many different versions were there, Jenna? I think there were something like ten.
[00:11:30] Angela Good night.
[00:11:33] Rich Sommer Now, I wasn’t privy to all of those versions because as a as a guest actor, I was really only given the script on the day. This is how I remember it. And I I’ve listened to you guys talk about it with Steohen and I, I, I, my memory is slightly different, but I don’t know where where it goes up. I’ve certainly mulled over this aspect of the story a thousand times, so it’s probably gotten altered as I’ve gone, but… The here was my problem, my problem was that I had an insight, I had a mole on the inside, and I don’t know if I’ve ever even told you guys about this. And I wait. I won’t name this person on the podcast.
[00:12:14] Angela I’m sorry. Wait. You had a mole on the set of The Office?
[00:12:17] Rich Sommer I won’t. I won’t I won’t name this person on the podcast. But this was a person who was not an actor who worked in in the production. And this person sent me the script early. He said, oh, you’ve got some great stuff in this upcoming episode. I was like oh my god I’d love-.
[00:12:29] Angela It’s a guy. It’s a guy.
[00:12:33] Rich Sommer (BLEEP) OK, fine. Yes, it’s a guy. So this person sent me the script and I was- in that version, Alex professed his love to Pam. And I thought, oh, wow. And as a it left it open. Is this a send off for my character or is this something that we may see him later on? I showed up on the day I was handed the sides. And those sides were, as as you guys know, wildly different, that they had taken out any profession of love at all, made it purely about her sort of artistic sensibilities and changed how that was going to go. So when we were filming, I will admit this is a fault of mine as an actor. I couldn’t get it out of my head because, again, everything we had been playing so far was that Alex had a crush on Pam and like you guys said with Stephen, what Alex ends up saying is enough, it didn’t need to be this on the nose sort of profession of of love, it’s implied, it’s intrinsic, as Jim says, you know, this guy’s into you. I mean, it’s it’s clearly there. But in the moment, I couldn’t find the right level of demonstrative that Stephen wanted. And the level that Stephen wanted was zero. The level that I was I was continually pumping out was more in the neighborhood of like 75 percent demonstrative. I couldn’t reel it in. And in fact, Jenna, to your question of pooping my pants, when I found out it was Stephen Merchant, that was just a little that was just like a little jitter compared to how I felt when Stephen…
[00:14:23] Angela Oh, no.
[00:14:24] Rich Sommer Came up to me after a take and said these words, the words that have haunted me as an actor forever. He came up to me and said, I don’t know why you’re not getting this.
[00:14:35] Jenna Oh no!
[00:14:36] Angela Oh no! Oh my gosh!
[00:14:36] Rich Sommer I was like, ahhh. It was awful. So he was, by the way, 100 hundred percent right. I just couldn’t do it. So, you know, looking at Jenna Fischer standing across me, John Krasinski is crumpled up into a ball under the table in that room reading his lines for the Bluetooth.
[00:14:59] Angela He was there? John was there?
[00:15:02] Jenna I remember he was there, but I didn’t remember he was hiding under the table.
[00:15:07] Angela Oh my God through all the takes?
[00:15:10] Rich Sommer There was nowhere for him to hide in the room because it was a small like conference room and the cameras, as you guys know, were moving all the time.
[00:15:17] Angela Everywhere.
[00:15:17] Rich Sommer There was no safe space, so he just hid under the desk. And I’m basically-.
[00:15:21] Angela Six foot three John Krasinski was curled up under the desk.
[00:15:26] Rich Sommer Yes. And I’m just like, mortified. Like, this is the- well, this is it. I’m never acting again, obviously, because Stephen Merchant’s never going to cast me in anything. Jenna and John think I’m absolutely out of my mind. I could- it was it was a stressful day. It’s all great now, but it was a stressful day.
[00:15:45] Jenna Oh, my gosh. Rich, I think you’re being too hard on yourself and taking on too much of the responsibility, because I was also told that Alex might be a possible love interest for Pam, not that Pam would have feelings for Alex, but that she might have to manage his feelings for her. And by the way, I want to say, I only respected Rich in that moment. And so much so that we went on to do a movie together, we did The Giant Mechanical Man. You played my brother in law and you were so funny.
[00:16:20] Rich Sommer That’s right.
[00:16:20] Angela Giant Mechanical Man is a great movie, by the way. Great. And you guys are fantastic in it.
[00:16:26] Rich Sommer It’s a I love that movie. And I believe me when I in in the month or so following my final day at The Office- and we had exchanged information because we you know, we it was clear we were going to be friends, I… My recollection is when you and Lee reached out to ask if I would come and do a table read for this movie that you guys were working on, it was both so exciting, but also such a relief that you had not written me off after that day because it was it was just such a stressful, you know you know, you’ve had those days on a set where you feel like this is my last day on the set. I’m never acting again. Obviously, I’m garbage. I don’t know why I did this. And usually I don’t leave a day feeling that way. It’s usually somewhere closer to the middle. But that day I left and I was just like, oh, that that is that. That was that. I hope Mad Men goes forever because this door has been closed. So it was such a relief.
[00:17:34] Angela Noone felt like that. Everybody thought that you crushed it, really and truly. I thought- I was rooting for Alex. And I know I’m not- I wasn’t rooting.
[00:17:43] Jenna What?
[00:17:43] Angela No, listen, listen now. So I don’t get hate mail. I wasn’t rooting for Jim and Pam to break up, but I became like I thought Alex was so endearing that I just I want Alex to have a good life. I became that person like, I hope Alex finds this person because he’s so sweet and kind and I don’t know.
[00:18:04] Jenna Rich, I have to ask, how did the set of The Office and the way we shot and the way things worked differ from the way you guys made Mad Men?
[00:18:16] Rich Sommer I mean, the ways we are similar is a very short list. The Mad Men set filming style was entirely different. First off for the first three, maybe four seasons of Mad Men, we were still shooting on film. So at this time, when I was doing The Office, we were we were definitely shooting on film. And that, you know, for anyone who’s been on a set where they’re filming with film, it’s a it’s a whole other process. It adds a remarkable amount of time when you’re even just changing a film mag, you know, the cartridge of film, it has to be sort of taken to a dark place and dealt with so that it can be sent off for processing. And it- the turnaround’s on scenes, you know, moving the camera around takes, I don’t know, not twice as long, but a lot longer. So the fact that on The Office they would hit roll and almost never stop until they were out of tape, as I recall. Right. I mean, it just it felt like we were always rolling.
[00:19:25] Jenna Yes.
[00:19:25] Angela It did feel that way. Yeah.
[00:19:28] Rich Sommer You could kind of stop midscene if you needed to and adjust something. Whereas on Mad Men it was more if we’re filming, everything has to be in order. And if we’re if we cut, then everybody can breathe again. It was just a very different type of precision that they were doing on Mad Men because it was obviously the look is not handheld. The look on Mad Men was very carefully and intentionally composed. Not that shots weren’t composed on The Office, but it was just composed in a different way. It was much more fluid. We’re watching the show now with our daughter, Bea. She’s 13 and she’s never seen it. We’re probably three quarters of the way through season two. Now, she knows just because it’s in the zeitgeist that Pam and Jim end up together. It is driving her bananas. Like and I haven’t I haven’t even thought to say, if you think this is tough, wait till Rashida Jones shows up because she’s just frustrated that, you know, Roy’s set a date for the wedding and Jim was sad and Bea was like, this is terrible. When do they get together? I can’t stand it.
[00:20:41] Angela You’re like, buckle in.
[00:20:41] Rich Sommer I got news for you. It’s going to be a minute. Yeah.
[00:20:43] Jenna Rich, she’s going to hate you when she gets to your part.
[00:20:46] Rich Sommer Oh, yeah.
[00:20:47] Angela Oh, yeah.
[00:20:47] Jenna What’s that going? What’s breakfast going to be like at your house?
[00:20:52] Rich Sommer Well, she she has been with me when I have been recognized from The Office and I-.
[00:20:59] Angela Oh yeah, we were going to ask fo you get recognized as Alex?
[00:21:04] Rich Sommer I do. And it is amazing to me how often because sometimes, you know, as as actors, we get different people recognize us from different things. And truly, it’s got to be half the time it’s The Office. I mean, I’m on screen for two episodes of The Office. So its reach was just sort of sort of astounding to me. But I did my favorite one is when Beatrice was a baby, she I don’t even think was a year old, we went to visit my family in Ohio and we were getting on a connecting flight in Cincinnati. I’m walking my tiny, beautiful little baby girl down the aisle, and this guy leans into the aisle and he goes, Hey, hey. And I sort of start and look and I’m like, yeah? This stranger says, don’t f with Pam and Jim. And he meant it, by the way. So I think people it was in those kinds of moments where I went, oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. This is it’s better that Alex goes quietly into the night and they go back to their thing so that I don’t get kidnapped or anything.
[00:22:14] Angela Oh Rich.
[00:22:16] Jenna Well, you know, maybe Alex had to go away, but we’re glad you got to stay in our lives.
[00:22:21] Jenna Yes. And Rich, thank you so much for coming on the podcast today. It was so great to see you.
[00:22:27] Angela Yeah.
[00:22:28] Rich Sommer Thank you. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of this.
[00:22:30] Jenna Oh, my gosh. I’m just I’m excited that we got to have you on the show. I’m excited we got to take that trip down memory lane. Hopefully this has been healing.
[00:22:41] Angela I hope it’s been healing.
[00:22:42] Rich Sommer Yes. Yes, I promise.
[00:22:44] Angela I hope it has.
[00:22:46] Jenna Thank you so much, Rich. We love you.
[00:22:48] Angela Love you, Rich.
[00:22:49] Rich Sommer Thank you. Love you, too. And thanks again for having me.
[00:22:56] Angela That was so great, thank you so much, Rich Sommer. And now Jenna,
[00:23:00] Jenna it’s time to break down Business Trip. It is Season five, Episode eight. Listen to this dream team. Written by Brent Forrester and directed by Randall Einhorn.
[00:23:13] Angela Office Ladies folks, are you ready to go to-
[00:23:16] Michael Scott On an international business trip.
[00:23:19] Jim Where you going?
[00:23:19] Michael Scott To Canada.
[00:23:20] Angela Canada.
[00:23:21] Jenna Canada.
[00:23:22] Angela It’s time to go. Get your passport.
[00:23:24] Jenna International traveler.
[00:23:26] Angela Yes.
[00:23:27] Jenna Let me give you a summary.
[00:23:28] Angela Please.
[00:23:29] Jenna Michael is ecstatic when David Wallace sends him on an international business trip to Winnipeg, Canada. He brings Oscar and Andy along. While on the trip, Michael romances the concierge and Oscar and Andy bond. Meanwhile, Jim and the rest of the office count down the days until Pam’s return, only to be disappointed when she has to stay in New York for another 12 weeks to retake a course that she failed. Also, Kelly and Ryan get back together.
[00:24:03] Angela Yes they do. The deleted scenes on this one are delicious. I’ll be sharing some of those.
[00:24:10] Jenna Fast fact number one, we have an awesome guest star alert.
[00:24:13] Angela Yes, we do.
[00:24:14] Jenna It is Wendi McLendon-Covey as concierge Marie. Concierge Marie, how do I love thee?
[00:24:21] Angela She was perfection.
[00:24:23] Jenna You guys might know Wendi, she is the star of the TV show The Goldbergs.
[00:24:28] Angela Yes. She plays Beverly.
[00:24:29] Jenna She was in Bridesmaids. So funny. Reno 9111. She is a member of the Groundlings Improv and she’s just an all around amazing human being.
[00:24:39] Angela She is. And she was so delightful. We slid into her DM’s.
[00:24:43] Jenna We did.
[00:24:44] Angela And I was like, Wendi, we have some questions. She was like, oh, of course. And she sent us fantastic audio clips.
[00:24:49] Jenna Of course, we had to ask her how she got her role on The Office. I was not expecting this response.
[00:24:54] Angela No, me either.
[00:24:56] Wendi McLendon-Covey Hello, Jenna and Angela. Office Ladies gorgeous Office Ladies. So my audition process, actually I did not have to audition for The Office, but it came to me in an interesting way. First of all, I had been in Michigan for not even twenty four hours before I had been fired off of a movie because one of the money guys thought I was too ugly. So I was- my ugly ass was put on a plane back to LAX. And when I got off the plane, there was a message from my agent saying, Oh, they want you for The Office tomorrow. So I was thrilled. You know, I’d been crying for, I don’t know, five hours on a plane. And then I get this news and it’s like, yes, I’m so glad I got fired. So when I got to the set the next day, you know, I was a little raw from being told how ugly I was. And I was in my dressing room, my trailer, and one of the PA’s came and said, oh, something to the effect of yeah, you don’t look as bad as we thought you were going to so we don’t need to see you right away in the makeup chair. I swear it was something like that. It was like, oh, we’re delighted that you don’t look like Shrek type of thing.
[00:26:18] Jenna Oh, Wendi.
[00:26:20] Angela I mean, we’ve all had moments like that. That is something about show business where people can get real tacky.
[00:26:26] Jenna Oh, yeah. Well, you know my story where they said I couldn’t be on Alias because I wasn’t hot enough. But then the very next week I auditioned for a different pilot and they said I was too good looking for the role. So I was like, well, I don’t know what I am then. I don’t know. I can’t change my face.
[00:26:43] Angela I had an agent say to me, You’re not Hollywood glamorous, OK? And I said, I know that. I was like, Yeah, I know that. Can I be Hollywood dorky, though?
[00:26:55] Jenna You can.
[00:26:55] Angela Thank you.
[00:26:56] Jenna You did it.
[00:26:56] Angela And I did it.
[00:26:59] Jenna Oh, no. Gosh. And I’ve been fired. I was fired from a pilot that I did with Matt LeBlanc. I played his wife. It’s on the air still. Man with a Plan. I was his wife. That was my part.
[00:27:12] Angela Well, I know this story. And you shared it in your book.
[00:27:15] Jenna I did, yeah. I got hired. I shot the pilot. While I was there the network said they wanted more scenes with me. I was like, I am nailing it. More scenes means you’re doing a good job. Well, I guess after we finished it, they showed it to focus groups.
[00:27:33] Angela And they didn’t like you?
[00:27:36] Jenna No. They liked me. But they said, this is a literal quote, they said, I don’t believe Pam would marry Joey.
[00:27:43] Angela Oh!
[00:27:44] Jenna The chemistry doesn’t work between these two. That was the feedback they got.
[00:27:48] Angela They could only see you as Pam and Joey.
[00:27:51] Jenna Yeah. So it wasn’t working for them that we got married and had a family. And you know the show’s called Man with a Plan. It’s starring Matt LeBlanc, it’s his show.
[00:28:02] Angela Yeah, I haven’t seen it.
[00:28:03] Jenna OK, well, guess who they can’t fire? The man with the plan. So out the door I went
[00:28:09] Angela I revenge didn’t watch.
[00:28:11] Jenna Thank you. I appreciate that.
[00:28:15] Angela As your BFF.
[00:28:15] Jenna That’s what you’re supposed to do.
[00:28:16] Angela That’s right. You fire my BFF, I’m not going to watch your show,
[00:28:20] Jenna But here’s the crazy part, lady. The crazy part is that I didn’t know I was fired until literally like two days before they were going to announce it at the big press junket in New York. I had packed a suitcase.
[00:28:35] Angela Tacky!
[00:28:35] Jenna Because everyone was like, it’s going. It’s going to go. It’s a sure thing. I had hired hair and makeup to get me ready for all the press. And then I get this call and everyone’s on the phone, all my agents, my manager, publicists.
[00:28:53] Angela Listen, when there’s fifteen people on the phone, it’s either great news or real, real bad.
[00:28:58] Jenna Yeah. And the first thing I said was, is it not getting picked up? And they said, it’s worse than that hun. And I was like, what’s worse than that? They said it’s getting picked up but without you.
[00:29:14] Angela Oh.
[00:29:15] Jenna And I was like, wow, I guess I’ll unpack my suitcase.
[00:29:20] Angela Dang.
[00:29:20] Jenna Yeah, I almost cut bangs in my hair that day.
[00:29:25] Angela I remember.
[00:29:25] Jenna You stopped me.
[00:29:26] Angela I didn’t want you to cut your hair that day. I said, you know what, let’s pick a different day. Let’s pick a different day to change your whole look. You did send me a picture, though, of you jumping in the air, flipping off the world.
[00:29:40] Jenna I did.
[00:29:41] Angela I said, that’s better. Go jump around, flip off anyone you want in the air. Do not cut your hair today.
[00:29:48] Jenna You were a good friend to me that day
[00:29:50] Angela And I will never watch that show. Sorry, Matt LeBlanc. I actually love you and I love Joey, but I’m sorry.
[00:29:56] Jenna I liked Matt LeBlanc too. He was very nice.
[00:29:58] Angela Anyway.
[00:29:58] Jenna All right. Well, Wendi, I am sorry you got fired because you are a talent and a force, and I love you.
[00:30:03] Angela Yes. And thank you for texting me and emailing me.
[00:30:08] Jenna Let’s see. Fast fact number two, Michael goes on his business trip to Winnipeg in this episode. And we got a lot of questions from people, why Winnipeg? How did they choose this location? Well, like I said before, this episode was written by Brent Forrester, and he did an interview.
[00:30:27] Angela You mean to the CBC Jenna?
[00:30:29] Jenna That’s the one, Ange, did you find it as well? Did we both Google real good this episode?
[00:30:35] Angela I Googled real good. CBC is the Canadian broadcast company.
[00:30:38] Jenna Yes.
[00:30:39] Angela It’s like so proud that I know what CBC stands for.
[00:30:43] Jenna Well, they asked him why Winnipeg? They did some good journalism. He explained that they knew they wanted this to be an international business trip, that they tossed around the idea of Montreal or Vancouver. But in the end, they chose Winnipeg because it seemed to strike the right balance between, quote, exotic and obscure.
[00:31:05] Angela Yes. And you know what else I loved in this interview, Brent shared that Phil Shea, our prop master, reached out to the Winnipeg Tourism Promotion Agency, and they sent along all kinds of stuff like airport baggage tags, shopping bags from the bay, old Dutch potato chips, which was founded in Winnipeg in nineteen fifty four.
[00:31:24] Jenna And you’re going to see those on the bar.
[00:31:26] Angela I became obsessed maybe because I watched this episode while I was hungry. I will have some old Dutch potato chip tracking and also flavors to share with you.
[00:31:37] Jenna I’m there for it.
[00:31:38] Angela And also they sent some Fort Gary Brewing Company paraphernalia and all kinds of other stuff.
[00:31:44] Jenna Yes, because we did not go to Winnipeg. We shot this whole episode in Los Angeles.
[00:31:50] Angela Yes.
[00:31:50] Jenna So we had to just make it look as Canada as possible.
[00:31:54] Angela Fakey Canada.
[00:31:55] Jenna Yes. Fast fact number three, even though we didn’t go to Winnipeg, I have some fun facts about Winnipeg and these were all sent in by fans.
[00:32:04] Angela Oh, I love it.
[00:32:05] Jenna Office Ladies listeners who are from Winnipeg wanted us to know these things.
[00:32:09] Angela OK.
[00:32:10] Jenna So first from Leah Patterson. Winnie the Pooh was named after the city of Winnipeg.
[00:32:16] Angela Get out.
[00:32:16] Jenna I didn’t know that.
[00:32:17] Angela I didn’t know that.
[00:32:18] Jenna Yeah, a lot of people know that the writer of Winnie the Pooh had a son named Christopher Robin and his son, Christopher Robin had a little stuffed bear named Winnie, and that’s where he got the idea for the characters. But do you know why his son named his bear, Winnie?
[00:32:34] Angela I do.
[00:32:35] Jenna Why?
[00:32:35] Angela I don’t know. I’m just messing with you. I have no idea. There’s probably a small number of people that know this, right?
[00:32:42] Jenna Well, I don’t know. Leah Patterson knows.
[00:32:45] Angela OK, Leah, why?
[00:32:46] Jenna Because in 1915, a black bear was rescued by a cavalry veterinarian who named the bear Winnie after his hometown of Winnipeg. And then he gave the bear to the London Zoo. And that’s where the real Christopher Robin saw the bear, loved the bear and then named his little stuffed bear after Winnie.
[00:33:07] Angela Oh, so it’s a little roundabout.
[00:33:11] Jenna It’s hard to explain. I’m sorry if I took you on a real circle there, but the bottom line is, yes, Winnie the Pooh is named after the city of Winnipeg.
[00:33:20] Angela Well, Leah, I love knowing that. What else you got?
[00:33:23] Jenna More from Leah.
[00:33:24] Angela More from Leah?
[00:33:25] Jenna Yes.
[00:33:25] Angela OK.
[00:33:26] Jenna Winnipeg has been the Slurpee capital of the world for almost 20 years.
[00:33:31] Angela Like Slurpee, like you get at 7-Eleven?
[00:33:33] Jenna That’s right. They literally sell the most Slurpees every year.
[00:33:36] Angela Come on.
[00:33:37] Jenna Yeah.
[00:33:37] Angela My kids love a Slurpee.
[00:33:39] Jenna I looked it up. It’s true.
[00:33:40] Angela Got to go to Winnipeg.
[00:33:41] Jenna More from Leah. Leah, you are a treasure trove of information about Winnipeg. Where do you work? Do you work at the tourism board?
[00:33:50] Angela Tourism agency?
[00:33:50] Jenna You should. Winnipeg was also the first city in North America to use nine one one.
[00:33:56] Angela They invented nine one one?
[00:33:58] Jenna I don’t know. They were the first city to use it. It happened in nineteen fifty nine.
[00:34:02] Angela Wow.
[00:34:03] Jenna This one from Taylor Nakarato, Winnipeg can get to close to negative 30 degrees Celsius in the winter and we have actually broken a record for being colder than the planet Mars in two thousand nineteen.
[00:34:19] Angela What? Oh, this is a tough sell for Winnipeg.
[00:34:21] Jenna On New Year’s Eve, the Mars Curiosity rover posted a temperature of negative twenty nine degrees Celsius. Now, that’s actually very warm for Mars. If you are interested, the average temperature on Mars is about negative fifty five degrees Celsius, but it can get as cold as negative one hundred and fifty degrees Celsius at the Poles. But on this warm day on Mars it was negative twenty nine. And on that same day in Winnipeg it was colder than Mars by a few degrees.
[00:34:55] Angela Dang.
[00:34:55] Jenna Very cold. Taylor N would like you to know that Winnipeg is a very diverse, multicultural city and they host something called folklorama. It’s one of the largest and longest running multicultural festivals in the world. It has over 40 pavilions where they embrace cultures of different countries and you can watch singing and dancing and sample different foods from that country.
[00:35:19] Angela I would go to that.
[00:35:20] Jenna That sounds so fun.
[00:35:21] Angela I would love that. Well, listen, I think we should take a break.
[00:35:25] Jenna That’s a good idea.
[00:35:26] Angela We’ll get an iced tea. We’re going to come back and I’m excited to break down Business Trip.
[00:35:31] Jenna Let’s do it.
[00:35:36] Angela All right, you guys, we are back, we are in the conference room. Michael is teaching the group about various cultures and how to travel to those cultures.
[00:35:46] Jenna International.
[00:35:47] Angela International
[00:35:48] Jenna behaviors.
[00:35:49] Angela Yes, Jenna background catch. At eight seconds, you can see Kate staring at me, but I can tell it’s Kate and not Meredith. She’s kind of looking at me like uhh. And then very quickly in the corner, you can see me futzing with my microphone.
[00:36:06] Jenna Oh, was she trying to tell you we could see your microphone?
[00:36:09] Angela I think something happened. Either my microphone dropped and I was trying to fix it and Kate was trying to be like camera’s coming. Something. There is a moment here, but you can see me. It’s very quick. I’m like futzing with my collar doing something.
[00:36:22] Jenna Yeah.
[00:36:23] Angela Anyway. It tickled me.
[00:36:23] Jenna Oh, that’s a good catch. Well, the reason for this conference room scene is so that Michael can explain to us that he is being sent to woo an international client.
[00:36:34] Angela Right. This whole meeting could have been an email.
[00:36:36] Jenna Yeah.
[00:36:36] Angela Yeah.
[00:36:37] Jenna The other thing that’s happening is we learn that Pam is coming home in six point five days.
[00:36:44] Angela Yes. And the office is very excited for Jim, everyone at Dunder Mifflin, Kevin smacks his butt. Craig gives them a kind of a creepy shoulder rub. Phyllis smiles and says, one more week. When Phyllis smiles and says, one more week, please look at her desk. It is covered with tissues. I don’t know what was happening.
[00:37:03] Jenna Oh, she must have had a cold.
[00:37:04] Angela Something. I just love the fact that we didn’t bother to tidy the desk.
[00:37:09] Jenna No, it’s real life.
[00:37:11] Angela It’s real life mixed with fake life. Stanley gives Jim a look and goes eh eh. And in a deleted scene, Jenna, Kelly helps Jim make a sign saying Welcome Back. And she’s really annoyed because he needs to use more glitter.
[00:37:25] Jenna Oh yeah. We had a fan question from Chris S about this scene with Jim. Chris said, I would like to know the specific stage direction Creed was given when he massages Jim’s shoulders as he comforts him. He really liked this moment. I looked it up in the script.
[00:37:45] Angela What did it say?
[00:37:46] Jenna In the script it actually said this, quote, Creed passes Jim. He punches Jim’s shoulder and then musses Jim’s hair. So this massage, they must have found it on the day because in the script he was supposed to give them a punch and a hair muss.
[00:38:04] Angela Well, I think it’s funnier because Kevin’s already smacked his butt.
[00:38:06] Jenna Yeah.
[00:38:07] Angela So it’s like a smack and a punch, I think this is way funnier. Also, John Krasinski’s reactions to everyone are- that’s what makes it. His face when Creed comes up behind him is so good.
[00:38:21] Jenna So now Michael is on the phone with David Wallace. He’s got his passport ready. He’s got his per diem.
[00:38:28] Angela Fifty bucks. He’s going to buy a sweater.
[00:38:30] Jenna He is. He’ll use other money for food.
[00:38:32] Angela Yeah. And he has a plane ticket.
[00:38:34] Jenna He does on Butte Airlines?
[00:38:38] Angela Butte.
[00:38:39] Jenna Butt Airlines?
[00:38:41] Angela Well I think it’s probably Butte.
[00:38:44] Jenna I looked it up.
[00:38:45] Angela I did too.
[00:38:46] Jenna I found nothing.
[00:38:47] Angela I found zilch.
[00:38:48] Jenna Not an airline.
[00:38:49] Angela Not real. Fakey airline.
[00:38:52] Jenna I want to know more though.
[00:38:53] Angela Why they settled on Butte?
[00:38:55] Jenna I think it was butt.
[00:38:57] Angela Oh come on. Really?
[00:38:59] Jenna I don’t know. Why would you call it Butte Airline?
[00:39:02] Angela I don’t know.
[00:39:03] Jenna We don’t know. We’re sorry.
[00:39:04] Angela Sorry guys. It could be Butte or butt. But it’s a fakie airline.
[00:39:08] Jenna Oh, here’s something. Michael is going to bring two extra giant suitcases for souvenirs.
[00:39:15] Angela Empty.
[00:39:16] Jenna Empty.
[00:39:17] Angela They’re empty.
[00:39:18] Jenna Do you do that? Do you bring an extra empty bag? Do you leave room as you’re packing? Do you consider I can’t pack this totally full because I know I’m going to purchase something? Or are you the person who gets to your vacation and it’s time to go home and then you have to go buy like an extra canvas bag to get all your stuff home?
[00:39:37] Angela Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding.
[00:39:38] Jenna Yeah.
[00:39:38] Angela That’s me.
[00:39:39] Jenna Yeah.
[00:39:39] Angela That’s why I have a plethora of real rando bags. Because usually you’re in a tight spot. And you don’t have a lot of options. I once had a travel bag that looked like a zebra. Because I had to buy it at the airport to fit my souvenirs because my suitcase was starting to like like atart to like look like it was going to tear. And for a long time we had the zebra suitcase.
[00:40:06] Jenna Yeah. Yeah. Guess which one I am.
[00:40:08] Angela You’re the first one.
[00:40:09] Angela I leave the room.
[00:40:10] Angela You leave the room.
[00:40:11] Jenna I anticipate my souvenir purchases.
[00:40:13] Angela You’re not walking through an airport with a zebra bag.
[00:40:15] Jenna No rando bags for me.
[00:40:17] Angela I’m a rando bag.
[00:40:18] Jenna Listen, rando bag happened to me once. Never again, you know what I’m saying? Like, no.
[00:40:22] Angela Yeah. I have a random suitcase from Scotland. I still love it. It looks like a travel trunk from, like, Joe Versus the Volcano.
[00:40:30] Jenna This is the problem. Sometimes you get a real find when you’re in a bind. Ooh, I rhymed it.
[00:40:35] Angela You did.
[00:40:35] Jenna I’m still rhyming.
[00:40:36] Angela You are. Stop it. If you can pause on rhyming, I want to tell you one other thing that’s happening in the scene.
[00:40:42] Jenna I can.
[00:40:43] Angela Can you?
[00:40:44] Jenna I can try.
[00:40:47] Angela OK.
[00:40:47] Jenna I was going to try to rhyme, but I couldn’t think of anything.
[00:40:50] Angela I know, I know. I was trying to set you up. Anyway while this whole suitcase business is happening, lady in the background, I am telling you, Pam’s puffer coat is hanging on the coat rack.
[00:41:01] Jenna It’s not Pam’s coat.
[00:41:02] Angela Come on.
[00:41:03] Jenna It’s not her coat.
[00:41:04] Angela How do you know?
[00:41:05] Jenna Because somebody wrote in about it and I zoomed in on it. It’s not my coat.
[00:41:09] Angela It sure looks like your coat.
[00:41:10] Jenna It’s not mine.
[00:41:11] Angela Who wrote in? It was me.
[00:41:16] Jenna Angela K wrote in. Several times. More mail than anyone.
[00:41:22] Angela I zoomed in too, and it sure looks like that puffer coat you used to wear.
[00:41:26] Jenna I know it looks like it, but it’s not my puffer coat. I think it might be Meredith’s. Meredith had a similar puffer coat.
[00:41:32] Angela OK, well, there you go.
[00:41:35] Jenna Mm hmm. Guess who else gets to come on this trip?
[00:41:38] Angela Besides the money belt and the two empty suitcases?
[00:41:40] Jenna Yeah. Andy is going to join him as his translator. He will be translating all of the French that they don’t speak in Winnipeg.
[00:41:49] Angela Well, we did learn in a deleted scene in Dinner Party, Angela said that Andy learned French during his semester in France.
[00:41:57] Jenna So this is kind of a callback.
[00:41:58] Angela Kind of a callback.
[00:41:59] Jenna Then Andy speaks some not great French.
[00:42:02] Angela Oh, a lot of not great French mixed in with some Spanish. Oscar is also going on the trip. I don’t really know Oscar’s role. Why would he be going?
[00:42:11] Jenna Something to do with crunching numbers maybe?
[00:42:14] Angela Maybe. I’m so glad that Oscar went because, Jenna, there are so many fantastic deleted Oscar scenes and Oscar and Andy scenes if you have the DVDs. And you guys Oscar does that thing in these deleted scenes like what he did with Holly in Employee Transfer. I have a new term for Oscar. He’s the office fun stopper.
[00:42:36] Jenna Ohh.
[00:42:36] Angela You might think it’s Angela Martin, but kind of like Debbie Downer on SNL, Oscar is always going to have that sidebar comment that’s a little too honest for the moment.
[00:42:45] Jenna Takes the wind out of your sails.
[00:42:46] Angela Takes the wind out of your sails.
[00:42:48] Jenna All right. So now they’re on the plane. Michael is up in business class. He’s got a mimosa. He has a moist hand towel that’s still wet. We got a lot of fan questions from Kyle T., Sarah M,, Steph Hernandez and Madison C.. Did you guys film on an actual airplane? If so, which airport and airlines were used for this episode?
[00:43:13] Angela Well, we have some information for you.
[00:43:15] Jenna Yes, we do. Thanks to Randy Cordray, who was our line producer who took over for Kent Zbornak. He gave us the lowdown. The interior airplane scenes were filmed at a place called Air Hollywood in Pacoima, California. And at the time, this company was, I guess, like the go to location for all things airline related if you-
[00:43:39] Angela Yeah, it was like a set. But for airplanes.
[00:43:41] Jenna Yeah.
[00:43:42] Angela So if you needed a plane to film, they were ready for you.
[00:43:45] Jenna Yeah. He said they had all these soundstages, they had various aircraft, various airport related props. They even had like interior airport kind of stuff. So we used the interior of a jet for Michael in business class and Andy and Oscar and coach. He explained that these airplanes can be split down the middle.
[00:44:08] Angela Yeah, well, Michael is going to introduce Oscar and Andy, you know, before they go back to coach, to Beth, who he says is his personal valet slash flight attendant. And she’s going to be helping him this morning.
[00:44:21] Jenna I love Beth.
[00:44:22] Angela I love Beth.
[00:44:24] Jenna When I watched it, it reminded me of the woman who played the transcriber in the deposition.
[00:44:29] Angela Just no nonsense.
[00:44:31] Jenna Just did we hire an actual flight attendant to play this role?
[00:44:35] Angela She’s so like over Michael and the camera.
[00:44:38] Jenna We did not. This is an actress. Her name is Deb Height. She has been on The Good Place, Barry, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Veep, Baskets, Arrested Development, Parks and Recreation. She’s a writer. She has written plays. She has written award winning pilots, award winning short films. And she wrote a comedy book about the rivalry between the Alabama Auburn College football teams called When Mommy Loves Bama and Daddy Loves Auburn. You can find it on Amazon. It’s really cute.
[00:45:15] Angela We were so lucky. We say this every week. Oh, my gosh. We say it every week. But seriously, every single person hired on the show always crushed it and was amazing.
[00:45:25] Jenna My favorite moment is when she slams Michael’s leg with the cart.
[00:45:29] Angela I know.
[00:45:29] Jenna It’s it’s so good-.
[00:45:32] Angela Steve’s reaction though, Steve’s reaction that was like, amazing.
[00:45:37] Jenna It’s too good.
[00:45:38] Angela While Michael’s getting his foot run over with the beverage cart, Andy is really trying to bond with Oscar back in coach. This is a deleted scene. It is amazing. It’s Oscar the fun stopper guys.
[00:45:52] Andy Honey roasted peanuts. Am I right?
[00:45:55] Oscar I don’t understand the question. Yes, you’re holding a bag of peanuts.
[00:46:00] Andy Gonna save that for later.
[00:46:03] Angela That just made me laugh so hard because Andy is like trying to bond. He’s like, honey roasted peanuts.
[00:46:09] Jenna But what are you supposed to say to that?
[00:46:11] Angela I know, but.
[00:46:11] Jenna I’m with Oscar.
[00:46:13] Angela I know, but this is my point.
[00:46:14] Jenna Yes, you’re holding peanuts.
[00:46:16] Angela But Oscar cannot edit. Like I think other people would be like, I know they’re really good or something, but Oscar is just like I don’t understand what you’re saying to me.
[00:46:26] Jenna I have to say, I actually really love a honey roasted peanut on an airplane. So I would probably respond. I might actually be Andy in this scenario.
[00:46:37] Angela I just thought that was really good Oscar the fun stopper. But, you know, if Oscar is not going to be fun, at least Andy has his DVD player and he’s going to watch Harry and the Hendersons. I think we should talk about what’s happening over at Dunder Mifflin.
[00:46:49] Jenna Oh, yeah, Pam’s coming back, which means Ryan is going to have to move into Kelly’s nook. Mm hmm. And he’s looking for a place he might be able to do his push ups.
[00:47:01] Angela Hes need space to do push ups.
[00:47:02] Jenna He does.
[00:47:03] Angela It’s kind of tight and cramped over there, but he’s going to try.
[00:47:05] Jenna He’s going to find a way. We had a fan question. How many push ups did B.J. have to do in this episode? He must have been so sore.
[00:47:13] Angela I want to hear this because I, as Jenna knows, I texted B.J. last night and I said, by the way, I just watched you do a one armed push up in the Business Trip. Dang, B.J..
[00:47:27] Jenna Well, I texted with B.J. about his push ups as well, and he said he doesn’t remember how many takes they did, but he said that Mindy definitely wrote this scene. He said there was a period of time when all the writers were doing push up contests and that might have inspired it. But also at the same time, he was in training because he was prepping to do the Tarantino movie Inglourious Basterds.
[00:47:53] Angela Oh, yeah. He was getting in really good shape for that cuz he was going to be a soldier.
[00:47:57] Jenna Yeah. So he was doing push ups in the writers room all the time. He had to literally find room to do push ups at work. So Mindy might have been going off of that as well. But also maybe she just wanted to make B.J. have to do a bunch of push ups in a scene.
[00:48:11] Angela And then a one arm push up.
[00:48:12] Jenna Yeah, see, that’s a moment where if I’m B.J., I’m like, I’m so glad I got that on camera that I did it, that I could do it. Yeah, I’ll always have that. Well, listen, Kelly is claiming she’s not impressed. Ryan has hurt her too much. It is not going to happen. No, she is in a healthy relationship with Darryl. That door is closed
[00:48:32] Angela Cut to (kissing sounds).
[00:48:35] Jenna Major makeout.
[00:48:35] Angela That’s kissy sounds.
[00:48:35] Jenna Yeah, I could tell.
[00:48:39] Angela Oh, you could. OK,.
[00:48:40] Jenna (Kissing sounds) You did it. Back in Winnipeg, the guys are arriving at the hotel.
[00:48:50] Angela It’s so beautiful. Michael says he could live there.
[00:48:52] Jenna We had a fan catch from Tori, Mary and Katie, who said Michael left Dunder Mifflin with multiple suitcases, but he shows up at the hotel with only his carry on. What happened to his souvenir suitcases? Well, guys, I’ll tell you, they’re there. You have to look deep in the background. At six minutes, thirty seven seconds, you can see the bellman loading the suitcases onto a trolley as Michael goes up the escalator. So, don’t worry. He has them and he’s going to get those souvenirs.
[00:49:24] Angela Yeah, they’re going to put them in his room. Jenna this hotel has something sort of magical about it. Fantastical. It’s called a concierge.
[00:49:34] Jenna Oh, yeah.
[00:49:35] Angela I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of it.
[00:49:37] Jenna Oh, yeah.
[00:49:37] Angela You know, they help you with the fine art of fanciness and pleasure.
[00:49:41] Jenna These guys are going to try it out. They’re going to go over and they’re going to ask her a bunch of questions. And guess what?
[00:49:47] Angela What?
[00:49:48] Jenna Almost nothing she says is true.
[00:49:51] Angela But I just love how completely blown away Michael is that she knows restaurants and their street address and the best way to get there. This is mind blowing to him.
[00:50:01] Jenna This is such a real concierge interaction when she pulls out the map.
[00:50:06] Angela And circles it and then tells them two different routes and two different means of transportation,.
[00:50:11] Jenna Perfection.
[00:50:12] Angela Perfection.
[00:50:12] Jenna But we did have a lot of fans from Winnipeg who wrote in again, Kimberly K said, Did the writers know that everything concierge Marie said about Winnipeg is inaccurate? Was this on purpose? Natalie V said the number 17 bus is real, but it runs a lot later than 9:00 p.m. It goes till almost 1:00 a.m. It wouldn’t be the only bus to the exchange district, which does not exist. I think they meant the financial district. And then Leah P said we also don’t have an Astro Cleaners.
[00:50:51] Angela Or the restaurants or the bar.
[00:50:53] Jenna No, the Huntsman is not a real bar
[00:50:56] Angela And neither is the sushi place.
[00:50:58] Jenna Yes. Well, Angela, we have another story happening in this episode. It’s Pam, right?
[00:51:05] Angela It’s a big story.
[00:51:06] Jenna Well, she’s supposed to be coming home from art school, but we’re going to have a phone call between her and Jim and they’re going to find out some news; she’s failing her flash class.
[00:51:16] Angela Yeah, and she’s going to have to take it again.
[00:51:19] Jenna If she wants to pass art school, she does. That means she has to stay another 12 weeks.
[00:51:24] Angela Is this art school like just digital art? Does she get to do any of the art that she’s actually really good at?
[00:51:30] Jenna I don’t know. It seems like this was mostly a graphic design program. Well, I had to cry in the scene. It was in the script that I’m holding back tears. And there’s a lot that is coming down on Pam right now. She’s dealing with the fact that she didn’t complete this course and the idea of being away from Jim even longer. But I had something else that I was playing. We’ll get to it.
[00:51:55] Angela OK, well, I thought it was a very moving scene. And it it just reminds me of those moments, you guys, when life happens, even though everything around you just keeps moving on. So Pam is sitting down. It’s like a busy stairwell. People are going up and down and she’s having a life moment.
[00:52:11] Jenna Yeah.
[00:52:11] Angela I thought that was very relatable. Well, Jenna back in Winnipeg, the fellows are going to arrive at Huntsman Bar.
[00:52:20] Jenna Yes. We shot these scenes at the Seven Grand Bar and Grill in Los Angeles.
[00:52:25] Angela Did you notice at nine minutes, 20 seconds what the chalkboard says at the Huntsman?
[00:52:29] Jenna No.
[00:52:30] Angela This is what it says. Welcome to the Huntsman. Enjoy quote, pup hour all night Sunday and Monday, five to seven p.m.. No creeps allowed.
[00:52:41] Jenna Oh, wow. Get out, creeps.
[00:52:44] Angela Get out creeps. And I have a background catch again. I was hungry as I watched this episode.
[00:52:50] Jenna The chips.
[00:52:51] Angela The chips, you guys,
[00:52:53] Jenna the chips that Phil Shea got are at the bar.
[00:52:56] Angela Yes. And I think I can see the ketchup flavored chips. They’re in a red-.
[00:53:01] Jenna Ketchup flavor?
[00:53:02] Angela Oh, yes, lady. Why did I do that with my voice?
[00:53:06] Jenna Have you eaten them?
[00:53:06] Angela Yes. I’ve never heard of this item.
[00:53:09] Angela Well, I worked in Canada for a bit, you know, and I have had these ketchup chips Jenna. They’re so good. Listen to how they’re described on the Internet. They’re the perfect balance of a delightful old Dutch chip layered with that lovely ketchup flavor you desire.
[00:53:24] Jenna But I don’t desire a ketchup flavor on my potato chips.
[00:53:28] Angela You might change your mind. I’m just telling you.
[00:53:30] Jenna Maybe I will. Chip people. Old Dutch chip people. Will you send me a ketchup chip?
[00:53:35] Angela Oh, my gosh. Get ready. But listen, make sure some come my way.
[00:53:40] Jenna You got it.
[00:53:41] Angela They’re tangy. They’re delicious.
[00:53:43] Jenna OK, guess who else is at the bar? Concierge Marie! Michael is, how you say, so excited to see her.
[00:53:52] Angela Yeah.
[00:53:53] Jenna How do you say it.
[00:53:54] Angela How do you say it? Andy’s going to bring them two glasses of wine.
[00:53:59] Jenna He’s going to get things started. He’s also going to try to get things started for Oscar and a couple of gentlemen sitting at a table nearby.
[00:54:06] Angela That’s right. He says to the bartender, Mademoiselle, beer me dos Long Island Iced Teas, s’il vous plait. Bad decision in a glass.
[00:54:15] Jenna It is a bad decision in a glass.
[00:54:16] Angela It is a horrible decision.
[00:54:18] Jenna You know how you’ve had a volcano and you did the splits?
[00:54:21] Angela Yes.
[00:54:21] Jenna I had some Long Island iced teas.
[00:54:24] Angela Where?
[00:54:25] Jenna In the Bahamas. On spring break with my friends. I’d never had one before. I wasn’t twenty one yet. But in the Bahamas you can drink when you’re eighteen. We went to the casino and they just give them to you free if you sit at the slot machines.
[00:54:41] Angela I have not-.
[00:54:42] Jenna All of this was like, what is happening?
[00:54:44] Angela I have not had a Long Island iced tea, I’ve had the volcano, but it’s just the same thing. They just dump a bunch of booze in it, right?
[00:54:51] Jenna It’s like seven or eight different liquors. Tasty. Went down easy.
[00:54:55] Angela Well, yeah.
[00:54:56] Jenna Then a lot of vomiting,
[00:54:58] Angela A lot of vomiting.
[00:54:59] Jenna Well, we got a fan question about this scene from Evan L. At eleven minutes, 14 seconds, Andy says, you will thank me when they spank thee. And he wants to know who came up with that line.
[00:55:12] Angela Can I guess?
[00:55:14] Jenna Sure.
[00:55:14] Angela Lee or Gene?
[00:55:17] Jenna That’s a good guess. It’s in the script. And I asked Brent Forester about it and he said he is the author of the thank me spank thee line. He said there are few things more fun than writing a rhyming punchline for the Andy character. He said he got a little bit too into writing rhyming punch lines for Ed that season. He said that one day in the writers room he pitched a line where Andy refers to his, quote, back up snack pack backpack. And he said at that point, the writers forbid him from writing any more rhyming punch lines for the rest of the year.
[00:55:56] Angela I wonder if he wrote nifty giftys!
[00:55:59] Jenna He might have.
[00:56:00] Angela Oh, Brent, that’s so good.
[00:56:02] Jenna Oh, well, guess what? They’re not going to spank him.
[00:56:07] Angela They’re not.
[00:56:07] Jenna They turn him down.
[00:56:09] Angela And Oscar and Andy now drink the Long Island Iced Teas, which is going to lead to some trouble.
[00:56:14] Jenna Some real trouble, because Oscar says to Andy, what do you see in Angela?
[00:56:20] Angela And again, I was hungry as I watched this. So at 12 minutes, 17 seconds, I can see another bag of old Dutch potato chips sitting next to Oscar’s arm on the bar. They’re the green and white bag. You know what that means?
[00:56:32] Jenna Sour cream and onion?
[00:56:34] Angela They are the dill pickle chips.
[00:56:36] Jenna What?
[00:56:36] Angela Yep. Described on the internet-.
[00:56:39] Jenna Do they make any regular flavors?
[00:56:41] Angela They do. I’m telling you, these chips are so good.
[00:56:44] Jenna You’ve had the dill pickle ones?
[00:56:46] Angela I have sampled. You know, like on set we would have a whole bunch of bags of chips. They’re real salty and I liked it.
[00:56:53] Jenna I guess I’m a chip traditionalist.
[00:56:56] Angela You know what? You need to be a chip traveler.
[00:56:58] Jenna All right.
[00:56:58] Angela You need to try some international chips.
[00:57:01] Jenna I’ll try them.
[00:57:02] Angela Well the dill ones are real salty. Hmm.
[00:57:05] Jenna I do like a pickle.
[00:57:06] Angela I know. But anyway, Andy drunk dials Angela, this is a huge mistake.
[00:57:14] Jenna Oh my goodness.
[00:57:15] Angela He says, you know what? We’re going to discuss this. We will discuss this naked.
[00:57:19] Jenna But then there’s a voice in the background. I mean, she’s with Dwight.
[00:57:24] Angela Of course she is.
[00:57:26] Jenna Yeah. But somehow Andy doesn’t totally register it.
[00:57:31] Angela He’s had a Long Island iced tea.
[00:57:32] Jenna Several, I think, at this point.
[00:57:34] Angela Yeah. And guess what, Michael and concierge, Marie, they’re clicking. They’re going to leave. They’re going to smooch outside in the alley. And we asked Wendi about this, about kissing Steve. And here’s what she had to say.
[00:57:49] Wendi McLendon-Covey I was super nervous to kiss Steve Carell. I was so nervous that I was practically going into convulsions. But I did it and it was great and I highly recommend it.
[00:58:06] Jenna She highly recommends. They’re not just going to kiss outside the hotel. All right. We are going to cut to Michael being sort of shoved out of her room.
[00:58:18] Angela Room 887.
[00:58:19] Jenna Yeah. Without his shoes.
[00:58:21] Angela Barefoot. He’s shuffling down the hall.
[00:58:23] Jenna I know.
[00:58:24] Angela And then she’s like, wait, you forgot your shoes. Only she says nothing. She just sets them out and quickly shuts the door.
[00:58:30] Jenna Well, that kind of wraps up concierge Marie. We had to ask Wendi if she ever gets recognized for being on the show. And here’s what she said.
[00:58:40] Wendi McLendon-Covey Yes, so many times I’m so surprised at that because I was, you know, barely in it. But, you know, that just speaks to the reach and the popularity of The Office.
[00:58:52] Jenna I read a fun fact about Wendi.
[00:58:54] Angela Yes, you share it, Jenna. It’s so good.
[00:58:56] Jenna OK, Wendi was the editor for California State University’s Academic Journal of Social Work. This was her day job before she hit it big as an actress. But even after she was working all the time, she kept her job until 2012. Bridesmaids came out in 2011. So even after Bridesmaids, she was still editing this journal of social work and we had to ask her about it. Here’s what she said.
[00:59:27] Wendi McLendon-Covey It is true that while I was building my acting career and, you know, doing pretty well, that I kept my side job at Cal State, Long Beach. I was an assistant editor for a social work journal. I did that for 12 years, all through Reno 911, all through, you know, all these movies that I did, Rules of Engagement and right up until The Goldbergs. And the only reason I’m not doing it anymore is because the journal folded. It went out of business. But it was a great job. It was like not even 20 hours a week. I could do it from wherever I was. And it was all about, you know, people in the social work profession. And let’s be honest, those people deserve a lot of credit for what they do. They don’t get recognized enough. Yeah, it was great. And I loved doing it. I loved my original boss who used to come and see my shows that the Groundlings, like she was just so super supportive that she said, please don’t ever quit. So I kept my word and I stayed until the very end.
[01:00:32] Jenna See what I was saying about amazing human being?
[01:00:35] Angela I love her. You know, that was so moving to me when I heard it. My niece is a social worker. I’m just always, you know, honestly, guys, I’m lifting her up in prayer all the time because it’s not an easy job. And I’m thankful that we have people that have a passion for helping others in that way.
[01:00:53] Jenna Yeah, it’s not an easy job because sometimes you have to see and confront real hard things.
[01:00:58] Angela Yes.
[01:00:59] Jenna And then you have to hold that.
[01:01:01] Angela Yeah.
[01:01:02] Jenna Yeah. Well, as if you needed another reason to love Wendi, I would also like to share that in 2009, 2010 and 2011, she rang in the New Year performing at military bases in Iraq and Kuwait, and she went to the smaller bases that a lot of people didn’t go to that kind of rarely get entertainment.
[01:01:23] Angela I love that.
[01:01:24] Jenna Love you, Wendi.
[01:01:27] Angela Wendi, thank you so much. It was so great to reconnect with you.
[01:01:29] Jenna Thanks for sharing your memories of The Office.
[01:01:32] Angela You guys. You can find Wendi in so many places. She’s so talented. She has a podcast called Generation Ripe. It is for teenagers over 40. It’s described as, A Generation Ripe listener is someone who thinks of their age as an asset, not a liability. We are older people with young souls or younger people with old souls. Of course, she’s on the Goldbergs. They’re about to start season nine. She’s on a Marvel series on Hulu called Modak. And just tons of other things, you guys. And you can find her on Instagram @WendiMcLendon-Covey.
[01:02:06] Jenna Yes. Let’s see. Where should we go? It’s the next day.
[01:02:11] Angela Oh, people are hung over,
[01:02:13] Jenna Very hung over. Andy does not remember calling Angela.
[01:02:18] Angela I know.
[01:02:19] Jenna Oh no. Michael is very melancholy and he has to go sell paper at Catalyst Paper, which I looked it up.
[01:02:30] Angela Yeah.
[01:02:31] Jenna It’s a real Canadian paper company, but it looks like its headquarters is based in Richmond, British Columbia, which is over on the West Coast. I could not find a Winnipeg branch. I mean.
[01:02:44] Angela If you couldn’t, I doubt it’s there.
[01:02:47] Jenna David Wallace calls to congratulate Michael because he did it. He got the sale. Michael is mad.
[01:02:54] Angela Yeah, because he’s realized that this trip was a bandaid to try to help his feelings about Holly being transferred. He’s upset.
[01:03:02] Jenna And he tells him off.
[01:03:03] Angela Yeah.
[01:03:04] Jenna I have a location breakdown.
[01:03:07] Angela Why do you say it like that?
[01:03:09] Jenna I don’t know.
[01:03:09] Angela You said it like sad sack. You said it like this, I have a location breakdown.
[01:03:13] Jenna I’m sad with Michael.
[01:03:15] Angela Aww.
[01:03:16] Jenna Yeah. For the Winnipeg airport, for these scenes, we used terminal number two at LAX. Randy let me know that there was an area that was out of service at that time and that our location manager, Kyle Alexander, was able to get an agreement from the LAX airport to let us film there.
[01:03:35] Angela That’s like unheard of. LAX does not let you film. Like they are hardcore.
[01:03:40] Jenna Well, especially after 9/11, they had incredibly strict airport security. So we were only allowed a very small number of cast and crew and extras. Everybody had to submit credentials very far in advance and had to be screened. So he said they had to create what they called a micro unit. That’s how small it was. He said that the airplanes outside the window were not Air Canada planes. They had to paint over the logos using visual effects during post-production. And so they put the red maple leaf on the tail of one of the planes. We could only afford to do one plane. If you look over Michael’s shoulder, it’s on the left.
[01:04:26] Angela Yeah, I saw it.
[01:04:28] Jenna Well, before we get to this big business with Jim and Pam, we should probably let you know that Kelly is going to break up with Darryl.
[01:04:36] Angela I mean, Ryan has a text ready to go. They just have to hit send together. And I think- what does Ryan want? Does he want Darryl to come upstairs and make a scene? What does Ryan want? He wants to be the other guy.
[01:04:49] Jenna Yeah, he wants a reaction out of Darryl. Darryl seems relieved. He’s whistling as he walks to his car.
[01:04:57] Angela He responds immediately. OK, cool. And then literally is like doing a dance to his pickup truck. He’s like, whew, thank you Ryan.
[01:05:06] Jenna And that then of course immediately makes Ryan less interested in this relationship.
[01:05:10] Angela And here we go. And they’re back.
[01:05:11] Jenna Here we go. All right. Jim is going to leave.
[01:05:16] Angela And again, you guys have this Jim and Pam scene at that golden hour. Your hair is sparkling with sunshine. It’s like that sunset scene in the parking lot. You couldn’t look cuter.
[01:05:28] Jenna I know.
[01:05:28] Angela I thought this scene was really sweet.
[01:05:31] Jenna Yeah. Pam is standing in the parking lot and Jim says, What are you doing here? Because he had told her on the phone, when you come back, you’re going to come back the right way.
[01:05:42] Angela Right. And he’s supportive. If she wants to take the class again, they’ll get through it.
[01:05:46] Jenna Yes. That the right way to come back is for her to come back having graduated from art school. So Pam’s standing there and she says, I’m coming back the wrong way,
[01:05:57] Angela but she’s OK with it. She’s happy about it. She missed Scranton. She missed Jim. She actually hated the graphic design school.
[01:06:06] Jenna Yeah. She tells Jim this isn’t really what I wanted to do.
[01:06:10] Angela But she had to go to find that out.
[01:06:12] Jenna She did. You know, we had a question from Evan L. Why did the writers have Pam fail art school?
[01:06:20] Angela Well, that’s a good question, Evan.
[01:06:22] Jenna I asked Brent Forester about it. He said that the story of Pam failing art school and coming back, quote, the wrong way, was a pitch from Jen Celotta. Brant said, I have a daughter and he said, I’m a big, fat feminist. That’s a quote. And the idea that Pam would give up on her dreams to be with a man really rubbed him the wrong way. But that Jen Celotta absolutely insisted that the romantic power of this gesture outweighed any politics. And also that the truth for Pam was not that she was giving up on her dreams for Jim, but that she was distinguishing what her real dreams were. And I really liked that because I think what Pam did here in going to graphic design school was that she was taking her real dream of being a creative artist and she was doing what a lot of artists do and she was trying to find a practical application.
[01:07:25] Angela Right. How can I sort of do art but make a living? Right?
[01:07:27] Jenna Yeah. Yes, exactly. But, you know, I mean, people go into graphic design when they’re passionate about graphic design. It’s not some backup job. Right? And the truth is, is that Pam discovered she does not have a passion for graphic design. And that’s sort of what I had in my head when I was doing that scene on the phone with Jim and Pam’s crying, Pam is realizing that even if she did pass the course, this isn’t for her. But she’s also embarrassed that she failed. But what she definitely does not want to do is spend 12 more weeks studying something she doesn’t love.
[01:08:05] Angela For me in that moment, I just saw Pam stating her truth, and I always think that’s so powerful.
[01:08:12] Jenna Yeah.
[01:08:12] Angela There is a very sweet deleted scene you guys with Jim and Pam. It’s in the break room. And you know what I’m titling it?
[01:08:21] Jenna What?
[01:08:21] Angela Love in the break room.
[01:08:23] Jenna What is it?
[01:08:24] Angela Pam is showing Jim her art assignment. She has this portfolio and she’s showing him the piece that she got an F on.
[01:08:32] Jenna Oh, I remember shooting this now. Yes. Oh, I remember it.
[01:08:38] Angela It’s really sweet. And as he goes through her art assignments, in the back, tucked in the binder is a sketch pad. And he’s like, what is this? And she said, oh, you know, it just sketches of things I would see in New York. And when you look at them, Jenna, and I’ll put it in stories, it’s like people sitting at a cafe, things she might have seen on her walk. And they’re really good. And this is such a wonderful moment. I wish it had stayed in. Sam, can you play the clip?
[01:09:06] Pam This is my project.
[01:09:08] Jim Before we start. How did you fail? You’re good at art. See?
[01:09:13] Pam Yeah, we had to make a logo for a coffee company.
[01:09:16] Jim That’s nice.
[01:09:17] Pam This is the one that got an A. The teacher handed it out. And this is mine.
[01:09:21] Jim Well, that’s cool.
[01:09:22] Jenna I couldn’t get it to print out right so I got an F..
[01:09:24] Jim I would have given you a D. That’s only because you’re sleeping with the professor. These are cool. What’s this?
[01:09:33] Jenna That’s my sketchbook. It’s just, you know, stuff I saw in New York, people in the subway.
[01:09:37] Jim Whoa. This is great. So much different from your other work. Wow, Pam, that is awesome.
[01:09:47] Pam Yeah?
[01:09:50] Jim Yeah.
[01:09:52] Jenna Oh, I wish that had stayed in.
[01:09:54] Angela It’s a really sweet scene and I feel like it just shows what Pam did get out of New York and I really wish it had been in the episode.
[01:10:03] Jenna I agree because I don’t think Pam’s art story is over yet. You know, she did not have the benefit of, I think, parents or role models who encouraged her to follow this piece of herself. And she only finally does now have that person in Jim. So she’s going to have to take her art journey at the same time as her romantic journey.
[01:10:31] Angela Well, I’m going to put that scene in stories because it’s really sweet.
[01:10:34] Jenna I loved it.
[01:10:35] Angela I did, too.
[01:10:36] Jenna Well, that kind of wraps up this episode.
[01:10:38] Angela Yeah.
[01:10:39] Jenna Thank you to everyone who helped us make this episode. Brent Forrester, Randy Cordray, Wendi McLendon-Covey, and Rich Sommer, thanks for coming on for an interview. It takes a village.
[01:10:51] Angela It does. And thank you to you guys for sending an awesome questions and Winnipeg trivia.
[01:10:57] Jenna Yes.
[01:10:57] Angela Some last parting advice. According to Andy, Long Island iced teas are way stronger in Canada, so be careful the next time you order one of those.
[01:11:07] Jenna Yes.
[01:11:08] Angela All right, you guys. Well, that was Business Trip and we will be seeing you next week.
[01:11:14] Jenna Yeah, see you next week. Thank you for listening to Office Ladies. Office Ladies is produced by Earwolf, Jenna Fischer, and Angela Kinsey. Our show is executive produced by Codi Fischer. Our producer is Cassi Jerkins, our sound engineer is Sam Kieffer, and our associate producer is Aynsley Bubbico.
[01:11:36] Angela Our theme song is Rubber Tree by Creed Bratton.
[01:11:39] Jenna For Ad free versions of Office Ladies, go to Stitcher premium dotcom. For a free one month trial of Stitcher premium, use code: office.
Recent EpisodesSee All
March 28, 2023
EP. 160.5 — A Look Back on Hot Girl
It’s Spring Break and why not celebrate with “Hot Girl,” the Season One “Office” finale?!
March 21, 2023
EP. 160 — An Interview with Will Ferrell
Guest Will Ferrell
This week we’re interviewing Will Ferrell! Will chats with the ladies about what it was like to guest star on “The Office” as Deangelo Vickers during the transition of Steve Carell leaving the show.
March 14, 2023
EP. 159 — The Inner Circle
This week we’re breaking down “The Inner Circle.” Deangelo Vickers has created an exclusive inner circle at the office that is composed only of men and it pisses off the women.