February 7, 2023
This week we’re breaking down “Michael’s Last Dundies.” Michael tries to teach Deangelo how to host the Dundies Award show but Deangelo’s extreme stage fright gets in the way. Meanwhile Pam gives Erin some relationship advice that results in her very public breakup with Gabe. We hear clips from the director and writer of this episode, Mindy Kaling! Mindy talks about what it was like to direct her very first TV episode and how she wrote both this episode and the first “Dundies” episodes in Season Two. In honor of Michael, Angela throws her own Dundies Award ceremony for the Office Ladies team which may have resulted in a “Longest Engagement” moment. And Jenna deep dives the sweet potato fry. So get your acceptance speech ready because it’s time for Michael’s Last Dundies!
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155 — Michael’s Last Dundies
Jenna [00:00:03] I’m Jenna Fischer.
Angela [00:00:04] And I’m Angela Kinsey.
Jenna [00:00:06] We were on The Office together.
Angela [00:00:07] And we’re best friends.
Jenna [00:00:08] And now we’re doing the ultimate Office rewatch podcast just for you.
Angela [00:00:12] 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.
Jenna [00:00:19] We’re the Office Ladies. Hello!
Angela [00:00:25] Hi everyone.
Jenna [00:00:25] Today, we will be discussing Michael’s Last Dundies in our first new recording space.
Angela [00:00:33] Yes, we are renting the cutest space. Sam, Cassi, say hello. We’re all here.
Sam [00:00:37] Hi, everyone.
Cassi [00:00:38] Hi.
Angela [00:00:39] They’re behind a it’s kind of like a shower curtain.
Jenna [00:00:42] Yeah, we can see them. This studio is so adorable. I have a coaster.
Angela [00:00:48] You do.
Jenna [00:00:49] Like some of the personal touches- in the bathroom, it’s clear that the owners have put up their children’s artwork, which is so my thing.
Angela [00:00:59] It’s adorable. Mm hmm.
Sam [00:00:59] And, Jenna, how would you- how would you say the temperature is in here?
Jenna [00:01:02] Sam, the temperature is just temperature. It’s neither hot nor cold.
Angela [00:01:07] Yes, And the table we’re sitting at was the owner’s grandmother’s table. And it’s the perfect height for me. Maybe she was petite in stature, because I don’t need my footstool!
Jenna [00:01:17] It’s very exciting.
Angela [00:01:18] Very exciting.
Jenna [00:01:20] So today, in our new space, we will be discussing season seven, episode 21, written by Mindy Kaling and directed by Mindy Kaling. Would you like a summary?
Angela [00:01:30] I can’t wait for it.
Jenna [00:01:31] I’m going to be honest with you. I struggled with this summary.
Angela [00:01:34] Oh?
Jenna [00:01:35] It seems like the title says it all.
Angela [00:01:37] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:01:37] So how do you expand on that? Here’s what I got.
Angela [00:01:40] Oh, well, you’re really setting me up.
Jenna [00:01:42] To be disappointed.
Angela [00:01:44] To be blown away.
Jenna [00:01:44] All right. It is time for Michael’s last Dundie’s. Michael taps Deangelo to co-host his final Dundee awards, but Deangelo has massive stage fright, and Michael worries about his legacy continuing after he’s gone. Meanwhile, Erin’s personal life takes a turn when she follows Pam’s advice. And everyone gives Michael a special sendoff.
Angela [00:02:08] I would add one thing to that.
Jenna [00:02:09] What is it?
Angela [00:02:10] Dwight’s heart is broken.
Jenna [00:02:12] You’re right. That is a major plot point. See? I struggled with the summary. I told you. All right, fast fact number one. Like I said in the beginning, this was written and directed by Mindy Kaling. You know, Mindy wrote the first Dundie’s episode, and this time around, she both wrote and directed the episode. Very exciting.
Angela [00:02:31] Yes. And we reached out to Mindy. She’s always so gracious. She always gets back to us right away.
Jenna [00:02:40] She got us audio clips a day earlier than our deadline.
Angela [00:02:44] Yeah. She wrote back and said, You guys, let me rewatch it. I’ll send you audio clips. We’re going to sprinkle them throughout the episode.
Jenna [00:02:49] Well, first off, we asked her a bunch of questions about getting to write and direct this episode, and here’s what she had to say.
Mindy Kaling [00:02:56] Hey, Jenna and Angela. Thanks for these incredibly thoughtful questions about Michael’s Last Dundies. So I have to admit to you guys that I was feeling really vulnerable about this particular episode and revisiting it and watching it. And I tried to pinpoint why that is, because I have nothing but joyous memories of working on the show. And I think the answer is because I directed this one. And I was so nervous directing the show because I loved writing for the show. And to this day, I think I’ve only directed two episodes of television, and they were both from The Office 16 years ago. I love directing. I think it was awesome that Greg and Howard let me write and direct an episode of TV. In fact, it was their suggestion that I did it because I was too scared to volunteer. I think Greg chose for me to direct this episode because it was a bookend with the first Dundie’s episode. But I don’t think we ever spoke about that. Greg is not like so sentimental that he would have been like, Do you remember six years ago or seven years ago when you wrote The Dundies? And now we’ve come full circle. I mean, I wish he was that way, but he’s just not.
Jenna [00:04:13] That’s very funny. I had wondered how she got assigned to this episode since she had written the first one. I thought maybe it was.
Angela [00:04:20] Intentional.
Jenna [00:04:21] Yeah.
Angela [00:04:22] Yeah.
Jenna [00:04:22] We also asked Mindy, what were some of the biggest differences between writing the first Dundies and then writing and directing this one? Here’s what she said.
Mindy Kaling [00:04:29] I think the biggest thing was how much more enjoyable it was for me to have written the first Dundies than it was to write and direct this one from season seven, and which seems crazy because I was directing Carell and Will Ferrell and, you know, obviously our amazing cast. I was directing a script I had written, which is like everybody’s dream is to direct their own words. And I just remember being terrified. And I’ll tell you what really terrified me, and this is going to sound ridiculous, but like making sure I didn’t sleep through my alarm, because when you’re a director, you have to be on time. It’s not like an actor where you can kind of be 8 minutes late and the hair and makeup team can kind of make up the time and you’re like, it is such a bad look if you’re not there. So I was really terrified. I also had the sense that this was an episode that was, you know, sort of important in the emotional arc of the series where Michael would be leaving. And it was like our beloved Steve. And it was, I think that we wrote the script, you know, with The Dundies it’s always one of those ones where you have to come up with these, like, jokey jokes. And by jokey jokes I mean the names of the Dundie Awards. It’s not just like a joke from the office, it’s like an extra joke. It has to be like something that a character on the show would come up with. So it can be funny, but not like so clever. So I remember that being challenging.
Angela [00:05:55] I mean, I have to imagine getting to pitch Dundie award jokes is so much fun.
Jenna [00:06:00] I’m sure that took up a whole night.
Angela [00:06:02] Right. I feel like there’s like a list of possible Dundie’s and they’re all like, so hilarious. We also wanted to know what it was like to direct Will Ferrell.
Jenna [00:06:11] Yes!
Angela [00:06:12] Yeah. I mean, he’s so funny. Here’s what she had to say.
Mindy Kaling [00:06:16] You know, what’s interesting was I remember Will Ferrell being incredibly kind. Like there’s these photos taken from set of him kind of like looking to me like, hey, was this good? When he absolutely did not have to do this. It’s not like Deangelo Vickers was this like challenging character for him. You know, he was just doing his thing. But I thought it was really nice that he was looking to me for input, you know, occasionally, which I thought was great.
Jenna [00:06:42] He’s the best.
Angela [00:06:43] I saw those pictures, by the way.
Jenna [00:06:45] Yeah?
Angela [00:06:45] Yeah. I went to NBC’s website and found all these Office photos, and there they are. Like, he’s kind of looking over her shoulder. She’s pointing to the script. I was like, Oh, that’s so, like, awesome that that was documented.
Jenna [00:06:56] Oh, my gosh. If I were her, I would have one of those framed in my house. Like 11 by 14.
Angela [00:07:02] But you would still introduce yourself to him.
Jenna [00:07:04] I would still.
Angela [00:07:05] You would hold up the picture and be like, Will, remember I met you?
Jenna [00:07:09] I’d get a wallet size just for that purpose to remind him.
Angela [00:07:12] Wouldn’t be creepy at all.
Jenna [00:07:13] Are you ready for fast fact number two?
Angela [00:07:15] Yeah.
Jenna [00:07:16] It’s a location alert.
Angela [00:07:18] Ding, ding, ding, ding.
Jenna [00:07:19] Were you wondering where we filmed The Dundies? Because I’ll tell you.
Angela [00:07:22] Please do. I remember!
Jenna [00:07:24] Well, I know you were there. I was speaking to our listeners. I was trying a new thing. The Dundies are held at a fictitious restaurant called Louis Volpe, where the breadsticks apparently taste like crack. The exterior scenes, when we’re all out in the parking lot, and the establishing shots were filmed at Barone’s Restaurant in Valley Glen, California.
Angela [00:07:45] Yeah.
Jenna [00:07:46] The craft service guys would often order pizza from Barone’s if we were working late on set, so this was kind of a nice little wink and nod.
Angela [00:07:53] I remember my very favorite pizza that we would get from there.
Jenna [00:07:57] Which one?
Angela [00:07:57] Well, first of all, it’s all Neapolitan style and it’s like a rectangle, right?
Jenna [00:08:01] What’s Neapolitan style mean?
Angela [00:08:03] Like thin?
Jenna [00:08:04] Yeah.
Angela [00:08:04] Yeah. My favorite order is the house combination.
Jenna [00:08:07] What’s on it?
Angela [00:08:08] Sausage, pepperoni and bell pepper.
Jenna [00:08:10] That sounds good.
Angela [00:08:10] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:08:11] Well, I looked at their website, and their pizza is a blend of recipes from six Italian families- all related- who created the original Barone’s Famous Italian Restaurant, which opened in 1945.
Angela [00:08:24] It’s a Los Angeles landmark, and it’s delicious.
Jenna [00:08:26] And they are famous for their rectangular pizza. Do you know why it’s a rectangle? I found out on the website, Angela.
Angela [00:08:33] I don’t.
Jenna [00:08:35] They put it in a rectangle because their first pizza ovens were kind of tiny, and this way they could fit more pizza in there. It was just a space saver thing. Efficiency.
Angela [00:08:48] And it stuck.
Jenna [00:08:49] It did. Now, the interior for The Dundies was not filmed at Barone’s Restaurant. It was a set that we built over on our warehouse stages. Randy even sent us a blueprint of Michael Gallenberg’s design. It is so elaborate.
Angela [00:09:04] I know.
Jenna [00:09:05] There’s, like, the restaurant with all the tables, there’s the hallways, there’s a fakey bathroom where Deangelo’s going to have to throw up. There’s the host stand.
Angela [00:09:13] He built a whole restaurant.
Jenna [00:09:15] And I remember walking through the fakey hallway into the restaurant, and it- it’s so mind blowing. I don’t even know how to explain to people what it’s like. I shot a show, Splitting Up Together, that had, like, a whole house. And when you were in the stage, you felt like you were in a real house.
Angela [00:09:33] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:09:33] And then you would walk out the door, and you were just in a warehouse. It’s very mind bendy. But the craziest thing about that house was that there were stairs to go upstairs, but they didn’t go anywhere.
Angela [00:09:44] Yeah.
Jenna [00:09:45] That was just like a landing. And then we would have to get in a golf cart and drive all the way over to a different warehouse on the lot where the upstairs stage was built. Very similar to, I guess, when we would have to do our elevator stuff on The Office. We’d have to relocate to a different building.
Angela [00:10:01] That’s one of my favorite things about sets. And when I watch shows now, like Friends or, you know, anything like that, I think about like, oh, when they go up their stairs, I wonder if it was like us where we went upstairs and then just nothing. You would just like maybe just fall off a ladder or be wedged in a little tiny corner and you couldn’t move. And I think about like, you know, Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox up there, wedged in a corner. I don’t know. I’m rewatching Friends, guys. I’m thinking about this now.
Jenna [00:10:29] You started from the beginning.
Angela [00:10:31] Yeah.
Jenna [00:10:32] How far are you?
Angela [00:10:32] We’re almost done.
Jenna [00:10:34] Wow.
Angela [00:10:34] Yeah.
Jenna [00:10:36] Wow. Hmm. Follow up to Office Ladies. Would it be weird if we rewatched Friends? We weren’t on it.
Angela [00:10:43] Maybe.
Jenna [00:10:44] I don’t know. We’ll see. Just a thought. All right. Last part of this fast fact. Do you remember the website we talked about before? It’s called I Am Not a Stalker with this gal, Lindsay, who visits the locations of places made famous on TV or in movies?
Angela [00:11:00] Yes, I’ve seen her website.
Jenna [00:11:02] Yes, it’s fascinating. Well, she did a really fun blog where she went to Barone’s and she took pictures of the interior of the real Barone’s. So if you want to see it, it’s all on her blog. And while we did not film there, the interior of the restaurant is featured in the movies Fast Times at Ridgemont High and the Billy Bob Thornton movie Bad News Bears.
Angela [00:11:25] If you go there and you go to the bathroom and you walk through that one big part of the restaurant they hardly ever use, you know? To get to the bathroom.
Jenna [00:11:32] I don’t. I’ve never eaten there in person.
Angela [00:11:34] What?
Jenna [00:11:34] I’ve never eaten there in person.
Angela [00:11:36] We need a BFF date there!
Jenna [00:11:38] You know, as soon as- when I was looking at the website, I thought, Why don’t I eat here all the time?
Angela [00:11:42] Oh, I’ve eaten there so many times. We go there for like kids birthdays and stuff. It’s super fun. But when you walk to the bathroom, there are so many paintings. So many paintings.
Jenna [00:11:53] Of what?
Angela [00:11:54] You name it. A ye olde boat in a rough sea in some far land. It’s I, I love all the paintings.
Jenna [00:12:02] It’s just a hallway of paintings?
Angela [00:12:04] It’s like a big empty room of paintings.
Jenna [00:12:08] I’m intrigued.
Angela [00:12:08] Anyway. Anyway, we’re going to go and then we’re going to both get up and go to the bathroom at the same time and I’m gonna show you these paintings.
Jenna [00:12:15] Well, that’s my location breakdown. Angela, you requested fast fact three. You know, it’s my favorite thing when you ask for a fast fact.
Angela [00:12:24] I did. Okay, one second because I need to change clothes.
Jenna [00:12:31] What is happening? Oh, my gosh. Angela just got out a red bow tie. She’s putting on a jacket.
Angela [00:12:42] A black blazer.
Jenna [00:12:44] A black blazer and a red bow tie. She’s getting out boxes that say our names on them. She’s getting out boxes. All right.
Angela [00:12:57] All right. Sam, hit it. (MUSIC PLAYS) Welcome to Office Ladies Dundies! Or as Deangelo Vickers would say, Get him to The Dundies! Our first Dundie goes out to someone who keeps us all going, and she might just have a great hand with some clacky balls.
Sound effect [00:13:30] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:13:33] Cassi Jerkins, come on up here!
Jenna [00:13:35] What is happening?
Angela [00:13:36] You win the best ball detangler dundie! Come on. Speech, speech, speech!
Cassi [00:13:43] Wow. Thank you so much, Dundie’s. I can’t believe it.
Angela [00:13:47] You worked really hard for it. Let’s give it up for Cassi.
Jenna [00:13:51] Woo, Cassi!
Angela [00:13:59] Our next Dundie goes to our fella Sam who brings us as many lamps as we want. He also shares knowledge with us from the Urban Dictionary and the Dark Web. And on occasion, he loves to go off on a certain television show. Sam, come on up here. You in the biggest Emily in Paris hater!
Sound effect [00:14:14] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:14:15] The biggest Emily in Paris hater. Speech!
Sam [00:14:19] She’s just not a good person.
Unidentified [00:14:24] All right. And last but not least, to my BFF and my co Office Lady, who does the best deep dives ever, but might also have a problem loudly swallowing. Jenna Fischer, get on up here because you just won the Cut Swallow Dundie!
Everyone [00:14:43] Yayy.
Angela [00:14:44] Speech! Speech!
Jenna [00:14:44] Thank you. I feel like we need to explain. Cut swallow for everyone.
Angela [00:14:52] Well, sometimes when we edit, Jenna really focuses on her swallowing and she’ll go, Sam, at 5 minutes, 15 seconds, can you and Cassi cut my swallow? Can someone cut swallow? Oh, my God. I swallowed again. Can someone cut that swallow?
Sound effect [00:15:06] Oh, yeah.
Jenna [00:15:09] To be fair, we are sometimes cutting your swallows, Angela.
Angela [00:15:12] Sometimes. Sometimes. But you win best swallow.
Jenna [00:15:18] Wow. Wow. My husband will be so excited.
Angela [00:15:22] Oh, yeah. Where’s my oh yeah, Sam?
Sound effect [00:15:25] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:15:27] I sent a request of sound effects to Sam last night, and then I told him and Cassi today to have as much fun as Dwight has at a keyboard as I gave out my awards.
Sam [00:15:37] Remind me to make you one of these that says latest emailer. Yes. I got some solid one, and I got an email last night. It’s one in the morning. Hey, do you have fart sounds? I was.
Angela [00:15:48] Like 11.
Jenna [00:15:52] Yeah, Angela, where’s your Dundie? This was so fun. You didn’t make yourself at Dundie?
Angela [00:15:56] Well, that doesn’t seem like fitting.
Jenna [00:15:59] Okay, guys. Sam, Cassi, me. During this next break, we’re going to have a little conference, and we’re going to come back with what your Dundie award would be. Okay, Angela?
Angela [00:16:11] Yay!
Jenna [00:16:12] What a fun way to kick off this episode! I love it!
Angela [00:16:16] All right. That was Office Ladies Dundie’s. We’ll be right back and break down this episode.
Jenna [00:16:23] We are back and Angela, the team and I discussed your Dundie and here’s what we’ve decided to award you (GAME SHOW MUSIC PLAYS) Angela Kinsey, you win the Dundie award for (UNCLEAR)
Sam [00:16:40] Where you make the jokes no one will ever see.
Angela [00:16:43] Yay!
Jenna [00:16:44] Yay!
Angela [00:16:44] I love it!
Jenna [00:16:46] Way to go, Angela.
Angela [00:16:48] Someday, when we televise our podcast, which will be never. All of it will pay off. You guys, Jenna did share that she-.
Sam [00:16:59] Speech!
Angela [00:16:59] Oh, my speech. Thank you. I’m going to. I’m going to act out my speech. Jenna did share with us during the break that she felt like she had a true Pam moment because as I was doing the Dundie awards, she started to tear up because she thought I was going to award her for best deep dive, which now I feel horrible.
Jenna [00:17:18] I mean, you sort of mentioned the deep dives and I, I mean, I wasn’t expecting it, but I just swelled with pride to receive an award for this thing that I take such care with. And I was like, oh my gosh, it’s happening. And then I got best cut swallow, and it just felt so similar to longest engagement.
Angela [00:17:40] All the wind went out of her sails. You should have seen her face when I said cut swallow. I want you to know, last night as I was making these, I was brainstorming with my husband about what to give everyone. And he said, You should give Jenna, like, a best deep dive. And I said, That’s not funny. Think they all have to be cheeky. And Michael Scott-like.
Jenna [00:17:58] Thank you, Josh. Thank you for seeing me.
Angela [00:18:02] Maybe next year on Office Ladies Dundie’s, Jenna. Maybe next year.
Jenna [00:18:05] I have. We’ll have to see.
Angela [00:18:07] Yeah.
Jenna [00:18:08] Well, we should get started. It’s 6 a.m.. 6 a.m..
Angela [00:18:13] So early.
Jenna [00:18:14] And Michael and Deangelo are about to deliver the Dundie nomination certificates. Why did they drive all the way to Dunder Mifflin to meet up? Why didn’t they just meet up at the first person’s house?
Angela [00:18:24] So many questions about all of this. And apparently Michael’s been doing this every year? So everyone at Dunder Mifflin has tons of framed, like Dunder Mifflin, like, certificates of their nomination?
Jenna [00:18:37] Well, you’re assuming people are keeping these items. I mean.
Angela [00:18:39] That’s true. That’s true.
Jenna [00:18:41] Stanley, Stanley doesn’t even let them bring it in the house. They just leave it on the front porch.
Angela [00:18:46] Yes. They go to Stanley’s house. He tells them to, you know, get off his lawn. They go to Jim and Pam’s house. Jim answers in his PJs and Pam yells, What is it? And he’s like, Stay in bed.
Jenna [00:18:58] I showed up to work for that.
Angela [00:18:59] Did you really?
Jenna [00:19:00] I did. I stood deep in that house and I yelled, What is it?
Angela [00:19:05] Then they go to Toby’s house, not to give him a certificate, just to egg his house.
Jenna [00:19:10] Yeah. Randy said they really threw eggs at a house, and then they had to clean it up.
Angela [00:19:15] I mean, it must have been a little bit fun.
Jenna [00:19:17] To just throw eggs at something?
Angela [00:19:19] Yeah. The next stop is Meredith’s house, and they’ve beat her there. She’s going to walk up the driveway. Walk of shame. Busted.
Jenna [00:19:28] Mm hmm.
Angela [00:19:29] I would like to point out at one minute, 23 seconds, maybe for the first time ever in the history of Office Ladies, a hummingbird feeder catch!
Jenna [00:19:38] Oh!
Angela [00:19:38] On Meredith’s front porch.
Jenna [00:19:40] I’ll tell you my favorite moment of her walking up onto her porch is how she walks into her wind chime and it goes off. It’s really funny.
Angela [00:19:51] I loved Kate’s performance in this. I love when as Meredith, she’s like, No, no, no. I have vienna sausaged. I have napkins. I’m gonna, I’m gonna- let me fix you breakfast. I looked in the script and the last couplet of lines between Deangelo and Michael were not in the shooting draft.
Jenna [00:20:05] Oh!
Angela [00:20:06] So when Deangelo whispers, I’m not going in there. And Michael says, Go, go, go, that was not in the script.
Jenna [00:20:14] We had a fan question from Rachel H in Colorado Springs, Colorado: When Michael and Deangelo are delivering Dundie nominations, Michael says he’s never seen Meredith’s house in the daylight. To me, this implies he has seen it at night. Could this mean that Michael and Meredith have hooked up? Is there any other reason why he would have seen it at night? I think he’s given Meredith some rides home because she’s had too much to drink before. That’s where my brain went.
Angela [00:20:41] Yeah, I don’t think they’ve hooked up.
Jenna [00:20:44] I don’t think they’ve hooked up.
Angela [00:20:45] Yeah.
Jenna [00:20:46] So Randy told us that they found all these houses where all of the employees lived kind of in one neighborhood because they were going to try to knock out these scenes as quickly as possible. And Steve Rothstein and our set dressing crew, they would do things to the outside of the houses to make them, you know, make sense for our characters. Well, I found this old interview that Kate did where she talked about how, you know, we were not going to go inside her house or any of the houses, but she had to walk in. Right? But we were never going to film the inside of the house. As she said, the inside of this house was like really how she would imagine Meredith would live. It was like a true hoarder house. Here’s what she said. “This was like a guerilla shoot. It’s not like they did much set dressing. They just found this house and we got in a van. When I walked into the house for the first time, we did a rehearsal on camera and I could not believe it. It was like a hoarder’s house. Paper stacked up and pizza boxes from floor to ceiling. It was bizarre.”
Angela [00:21:47] I’m sure they did some set dressing on the outside and they really sold it. And I’m sure whatever Kate saw inside was maybe just the person that lived there.
Jenna [00:21:55] Yeah.
Angela [00:21:56] Well, I love seeing people’s homes. I mean, I know we’d already seen Jim and Pam, but that’s one of the things I always wanted to do on the show. And I remember I pitched to Paul one time. I was like, Can we have an episode where we go to a few people’s houses? He’s like, Angela, it’s called The Office.
Jenna [00:22:09] I know.
Angela [00:22:12] And I mean, I know over the years we had a few get togethers at Michael’s condo and like, Gabe’s apartment, but like, he was like, No, Ange, we can’t just keep going to people’s houses.
Jenna [00:22:21] Well, now this episode is going to get started and Michael is going to walk in the door and ask Erin what her plans are for that night.
Angela [00:22:27] Yeah, Erin really fakes him out. She’s, you know, pretending that she forgot all about The Dundies. But then she’s so excited and she holds up her certificate and she’s like, I’m going to The Dundies!
Jenna [00:22:36] At 2 minutes and 21 seconds, I noticed that there’s caramels in the candy dish. I think this might be the first time we’ve had kind of a sticky, chewy candy in there. So it’s a big catch, everybody.
Angela [00:22:52] This is breaking news, everybody. Sticky candy at reception.
Jenna [00:22:56] Mm hmm.
Angela [00:22:58] Maybe that’s your next Dundie.
Jenna [00:23:01] Sticky can- I didn’t put it there.
Angela [00:23:02] Best spotter.
Jenna [00:23:04] Hmm. I mean. I think my next Dundie could just be best deep dive, but I don’t want to tell you how to run your Dundies.
Angela [00:23:13] I, you know what I’m positive of? Every Office Ladies Dundie’s I host, you’re not going to get the award you wanted.
Jenna [00:23:20] Well, that’s clear. Tradition started.
Angela [00:23:26] Michael’s going to have a talking head where he shows just how important The Dundies are to him. You know, this is his legacy that he’s going to be passing on. He gets really excited. He addresses the whole group, kind of amping up the night. And, you know, Jenna, we’ve had many debates on this podcast about when Jim and Pam’s first kiss was. We all know your thoughts.
Jenna [00:23:47] Mm hmm.
Angela [00:23:47] But i think the shooting draft for this episode might solve this question for us.
Jenna [00:23:53] Really?
Angela [00:23:53] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:23:54] I’m intrigued.
Angela [00:23:55] This scene would have started with Deangelo saying, For those of us who’ve never experienced a Dundie Awards, I’ve asked Michael to talk a little bit about it. Then Michael would have said, It is a magical night, Deangelo. And not just because we recognize fellow employees; people fall in love. Pam and Jim had their first kiss there.
Jenna [00:24:16] Oh!
Angela [00:24:17] And then the script says, Pam and Jim look at each other and smile a little. Then Dwight says, Pam got so drunk, she fell out of a chair. And then Michael says, Yes, anything can happen. Like the Golden Globes, but less mean.
Jenna [00:24:33] Wow. Wow!
Angela [00:24:36] Yeah!
Jenna [00:24:38] All right. I guess it might be time for me to accept that Jim and Pam’s first kiss was at The Dundies.
Angela [00:24:45] Yeah.
Jenna [00:24:46] Okay. As an actor, I accept what has been scripted. You know that’s our job. Yeah, right. That’s the truth. We had a fan question from Julia P in Indiana who said, Dwight has a great line in this scene where he’s discussing the dress code for The Dundies with Michael Scott. When Michael says it is black tie optional and Dwight replies, Every day is black tie optional. Julia would like us to know, “I don’t always agree with Dwight, but as someone who loves any excuse to dress up a bit, I loved this line.”
Angela [00:25:21] Hmm. Hmm.
Jenna [00:25:22] I also like this line. But I’ll tell you, I did look up what black tie optional means.
Angela [00:25:27] Yeah?
Jenna [00:25:28] And black tie optional actually means you’re supposed to get really, really dressed up. And you can wear a tuxedo and a full length gown if you want. If you don’t want to wear those things, you still need to dress it up. So black tie optional does not mean you can show up in casual clothing. So Dwight is wrong.
Sam [00:25:46] And Angela has already picked both options today, in one podcast reacording.
Jenna [00:25:50] She has. She’s gone both black tie optional and casual. We had another fan question from Tess W in Virginia who said, I always thought it was interesting that Pam and Ryan get on each other’s nerves during the later seasons.
Angela [00:26:06] Oh, is she talking about the scene I call back to back sass?
Jenna [00:26:10] Yes. Please describe Angela.
Angela [00:26:13] Phyllis- they’re talking about the breadsticks at the restaurant. Phyllis says, I love their breadsticks. Pam says, Oh, their breadsticks are like crack. Ryan says, I love when people say like crack when they’ve obviously never done crack. Pam says, Well the breadsticks are like what then, Ryan? What can I use? Ryan says, I don’t know. Something from your world. The breadsticks are like scrapbooking. Pam says, You’re right. You’re right. I’m a middle class fraud.
Jenna [00:26:43] Well, Tess pointed out that they grew so close during the Michael Scott Paper Company arc. When and why do you think they started to dislike each other? Tess, I’ll tell you, it all started right here. Mindy had written this scene for me and B.J., and we couldn’t get through it because we kept laughing about it. It was so funny to us, this dialogue. But then people really liked this bickering, and so it’s going to continue. But it kind of started here over this thing about the breadsticks.
Angela [00:27:13] Yeah, I feel like this one is the one that knocked it out of the park, but you guys have always bickered a little bit here and there.
Jenna [00:27:19] It’s true. It’s true. But now we’re really going to start amping it up.
Angela [00:27:24] Michael is now going to reveal that his Dundie’s co-host will be Deangelo.
Jenna [00:27:32] Dwight is crestfallen.
Angela [00:27:34] Always the Padawan, never the Jedi.
Jenna [00:27:37] I did not understand that reference.
Angela [00:27:39] Padawan?
Jenna [00:27:39] What’s a Padawan?
Angela [00:27:40] It’s like the apprentice to the Jedi.
Jenna [00:27:44] Oh.
Angela [00:27:45] But no. Then.
Jenna [00:27:46] Right. The Jedi is the best thing?
Angela [00:27:48] Yeah.
Jenna [00:27:49] What’s a Jedi?
Angela [00:27:50] A Jedi? What is a Jedi?
Jenna [00:27:52] Yes, that- are you like, um is that like a plane fighter? Like you drive the plane and you. Is it like-.
Angela [00:28:00] Drive the plane?
Jenna [00:28:01] Is it like, you know, the pilot? Are you the, the pilot? The fighter pilot is a Jedi a fighter pilot?
Angela [00:28:08] A Jedi is is is the person that can channel the force and use the force in battle.
Jenna [00:28:14] Is there only one Jedi?
Sam [00:28:16] You’re getting viscerally mad.
Angela [00:28:17] There’s so many Jedis. I can’t even believe that you’re like, is there one?
Jenna [00:28:22] Do they? Are they also fighter pilots?
Angela [00:28:26] Oh, my God. What are you watching? Like Top Gun? Is this like some.
Jenna [00:28:30] Luke Skywalker. And who’s the other guy?
Angela [00:28:34] Darth Vader?
Jenna [00:28:35] No, the other one.
Angela [00:28:36] Yoda?
Sam [00:28:37] Obi-Wan?
Angela [00:28:38] Obi-Wan Kenobi?
Sam [00:28:38] You can’t just say the other one. There’s so many.
Jenna [00:28:40] No, the one.
Angela [00:28:41] The Sith?
Sam [00:28:42] Chewbacca? Leia? Han?
Jenna [00:28:45] The human. Han Solo!
Cassi [00:28:45] Han Solo is not a Jedi.
Jenna [00:28:46] Han Solo.
Angela [00:28:47] He’s not a Jedi. He can’t use the force.
Jenna [00:28:50] He can’t?
Angela [00:28:50] No.
Sam [00:28:51] No.
Angela [00:28:51] He flies the falcon.
Jenna [00:28:53] He’s the fighter! He’s the jet fighter! He’s the pilot.
Angela [00:28:57] He’s. He’s not a jet fighter. He’s just a pilot. He’s a scrappy fella.
Jenna [00:29:02] Is Luke Skywalker a Jedi?
Angela [00:29:04] Yes.
Jenna [00:29:05] But he also drives a plane, right?
Angela [00:29:09] He does drive a plane. He drives the plane.
Sam [00:29:12] He does drive a plane.
Jenna [00:29:12] Mm hmm. Okay.
Angela [00:29:13] Yeah.
Jenna [00:29:14] So. So piloting the plane has nothing to do with it.
Angela [00:29:19] It’s not a prerequisite to being a Jedi.
Sam [00:29:22] To everyone listening at home getting mad, I know.
Jenna [00:29:24] Is Princess Leia a Jedi?
Angela [00:29:26] Yes!
Sam [00:29:27] She can sense the force. She can reach out to Luke through it.
Angela [00:29:30] She. They’re like they have-
Sam [00:29:32] Han Solo is not a Jedi as he has no, no ability to use the force. (UNCLEAR)
Angela [00:29:35] He can’t use the force.
Jenna [00:29:37] How do you get the force? How- do you have- do you have to become a Padawan?
Sam [00:29:40] Well, you’re. You’re born with it and your training helps you use it.
Jenna [00:29:45] So like Harry Potter, you’re either born with magic or not.
Angela [00:29:49] That’s true. Yes.
Jenna [00:29:51] Okay.
Angela [00:29:51] And then a Padawan would be like an apprentice with the Jedi who’s a master. A master of the force.
Jenna [00:29:57] A master at harnessing the force.
Angela [00:29:58] That’s right. And a Padawan would learn how to, like, sort of tune in to the force and use it.
Jenna [00:30:05] Is Chewbacca a Jedi?
Angela [00:30:06] No. No. I wish.
Jenna [00:30:07] He doesn’t have the force?
Angela [00:30:09] No. No.
Jenna [00:30:10] Okay.
Angela [00:30:10] I wish. Yeah. That would have been a great Jedi.
Jenna [00:30:13] Okay.
Angela [00:30:14] Okay.
Jenna [00:30:15] Thank you.
Angela [00:30:17] Where are we? So.
Jenna [00:30:18] Well, Deangelo’s going to say that he’s not interested in co-hosting these awards. He’s not much of a performer. In fact, he’s very, very bad. So Michael’s going to need to call a conference room meeting. And everyone’s going to try to coach Deangelo on how to do banter and rat a tat tat.
Angela [00:30:36] Kevin has one of my favorite lines in the whole episode, which is, I love banter, but I hate witty banter.
Jenna [00:30:47] Well, Deangelo’s trying, but it turns out he’s all rat and no tat.
Angela [00:30:53] Now, Michael’s going to try all of these sort of wacky ways to get Deangelo comfortable at hosting. We have an old tech alert. 6 minutes, 4 seconds. Is that a yellow Sony Walkman? Like the waterproof one?
Jenna [00:31:05] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:31:05] That we all got. But mine never went in the water. I never took it in the water.
Jenna [00:31:08] No, it was just it was not fully waterproof, but it was like water resistant because you needed that water resistance because you were going to sweat so hard while you were working out with that on.
Angela [00:31:20] I see.
Jenna [00:31:20] Yeah.
Angela [00:31:21] Also, the little buttons used to pop off. Do you remember? They were like squishy puffy buttons and they would come off.
Jenna [00:31:26] It was super fun to take them off and put them back on. You know, before we move on, I did have a quick catch from the conference room scene at 4 minutes and 10 seconds, which is that Darryl is still rocking his Southwest style shirt.
Angela [00:31:38] Oh, yeah.
Jenna [00:31:39] He’s still trying to butter up to Deangelo. He’s going to.
Angela [00:31:41] He’s got his little snaps.
Jenna [00:31:42] Have to forever, forever love it.
Angela [00:31:44] Outside, Jim and Pam are strolling and they walk up and Erin’s in her car.
Jenna [00:31:49] She’s eating in her car, eating lunch.
Angela [00:31:51] And she, like, ducks down, like to hide.
Jenna [00:31:53] Yeah. And then she’s like, Get in, get in. And we find out that the reason that she’s eating in her car is because she just needed to have a little alone time from Gabe.
Angela [00:32:02] Yeah, she doesn’t like him, as it turns out.
Jenna [00:32:06] And Pam says maybe she should tell Gabe, you know, rather than waste more of his time.
Angela [00:32:12] Oh, Pam, Pam, Pam, Pam. You cannot.
Jenna [00:32:14] This is gonna set up a real awkward moment for later. We had a question from Soyan J from South Korea. Around 6 minutes and 30 seconds, there’s a scene where Jim and Pam are walking down the street and find Erin. Was the dialogue about sweet potato fries scripted or did you guys improvise?
Angela [00:32:36] Well, I can tell you in the shooting draft it said, Pam and Jim walk. They see Erin sitting in her car. Erin sees them and ducks down. They go to her window, intrigued.
Jenna [00:32:45] So when I heard this dialogue and I saw this fan question, I had like one of those things like that memory just comes racing back into your head.
Angela [00:32:54] Yeah. Oh, yeah.
Jenna [00:32:55] I think this was John dunking on me.
Angela [00:32:58] Really?
Jenna [00:32:59] Yeah, because- and, and I had this memory of him doing it and me laughing because I am pretty sure that I was going on and on about sweet potato fries in restaurants to him because I’m allergic to sweet potatoes. And I was getting really frustrated that everywhere you went now it was a sweet potato fry, sweet potato fry. Why can’t I just get a regular fry? And so I am pretty sure that he improvised that line.
Angela [00:33:26] Because you had been going off about it?
Jenna [00:33:28] Yes.
Angela [00:33:29] That’s really funny.
Jenna [00:33:31] Because of this scene, I decided to do a deep dive on the sweet potato fry.
Angela [00:33:36] Hit it, Sam. (GAME SHOW MUSIC) Hey everybody! We have a special treat at the Office Ladies Dundie Awards. Jenna Jenna Jenna Fischer Fischer Fischer is gonna do a deep dive!
Jenna [00:33:49] Thank you so much. Thank you. Yes. The New York Times published an article in 2010 called Sweet Potatoes Step Out from Under Marshmallows. This was an article that was all about how sweet potatoes were making a huge comeback in restaurants and in recipes, in particular, the sweet potato fry.
Angela [00:34:12] Ooh.
Jenna [00:34:14] Here’s what it said. “There is no denying that sweet potato fries are at the center of the sweet potato revolution.”
Angela [00:34:22] Wait, there’s a sweet potato revolution?
Jenna [00:34:24] According to this article, there is.
Angela [00:34:26] Oh my goodness.
Jenna [00:34:27] What began as innovation at the trendiest restaurants in San Francisco and New York in the 1980s has finally worked its way into the culinary mainstream. This article said that over the past two years, the number of restaurants offering sweet potatoes as a side dish had increased by 40%.
Angela [00:34:47] 40%.
Jenna [00:34:48] And most of that was sweet potato fries.
Angela [00:34:51] How about them apples?
Jenna [00:34:53] The article also cited that Google.
Angela [00:34:57] New invention on the Internet.
Jenna [00:34:59] Yes. At the time, searches for sweet potato fries were up 40%.
Angela [00:35:05] There’s that number again.
Jenna [00:35:07] I know. It’s sweeping the nation in increments of 40%.
Angela [00:35:12] Yeah.
Jenna [00:35:13] I also learned from this article that in the United States we harvest over 2 billion pounds of sweet potatoes each year, and that 47% of our nation’s sweet potatoes are grown in North Carolina. Thanks, North Carolina. I can’t eat any of them, but that’s cool. Finally, nutritionists love sweet potatoes because it is a vegetable that also has protein and complex carbs that don’t spike insulin levels. It is recommended for those with diabetes. And there you have it! (GAME SHOW MUSIC)
Angela [00:35:47] That’s why next year you’re winning the best Dundie for deep dives. Yeah!
Jenna [00:35:51] Thank you so much. Thank you so much.
Angela [00:35:57] Well, with that, you guys, let’s take a break. We’re going to be back because it’s time- Sam, can you cut swallow? For The Dundies! We’ll be right back. The ceremony is going to begin with a video sketch, and it’s starring Deangelo and Michael.
Jenna [00:36:15] Oh, yeah. It’s like those opening video sketches that they would do at the Emmys or something like that.
Angela [00:36:22] Mm hmm. Deangelo is searching for Michael. And guess who’s going to help him find Michael?
Jenna [00:36:28] Everyone in the office.
Angela [00:36:30] All played by Michael Scott.
Jenna [00:36:31] That’s right.
Angela [00:36:32] First up is Jo Bennett. Michael is dressed as Jo. He has a wig. And he’s getting some laughs, you guys.
Jenna [00:36:39] Yeah, it’s actually a good video. It’s not bad.
Angela [00:36:41] Yeah. Then Deangelo is going to go to accounting. He’s looking for Michael. And guess who’s going to help him?
Jenna [00:36:48] Michel-Angela?
Angela [00:36:49] Michel-Angela. This bit gets a lot of laughs, in particular from Oscar. I want you to know there was a talking head in the shooting draft that would have come right after the scene in accounting. So Deangelo says to Angela/ Michael, Hey, can you help me find Michael Scott, Angela? And Michael as Angela answers, My boyfriend can. He’s a state senator. Oh, wait, he can’t because that title has no meaning. And then it cuts to Oscar and he is doubled over. Right?
Jenna [00:37:18] Yes.
Angela [00:37:19] Well, immediately after Oscar’s laughter, it would have cut to him saying, I did some of the writing.
Jenna [00:37:29] That’s fun.
Angela [00:37:30] I know.
Jenna [00:37:31] That’s very fun.
Angela [00:37:32] Next up is Jim and Michael’s Jim is very funny.
Jenna [00:37:37] He has an earring.
Angela [00:37:38] He does. And he’s very slumped down and.
Jenna [00:37:41] Yeah. You want to listen to some music?
Angela [00:37:43] Then Michael is Phyllis, and he plays Phyllis so old and kind of like that commercial. Remember that commercial, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.
Jenna [00:37:52] Yes.
Angela [00:37:52] Michael does that. In the shooting draft, Phyllis would have had a talking head after Michael’s impression of her.
Jenna [00:37:59] Oh.
Angela [00:38:00] I loved it. This is what she would have said. Look, I’m rich. I have a high profile marriage. People are going to take shots at me.
Jenna [00:38:12] Oh, Phyllis. This all ends with Deangelo running into the bathroom. He’s talking to himself. But guess what? When he looks in the mirror, Michael Scott has appeared. Well, we got a fan question about this mirror moment. I’m going to let Mindy take it away.
Mindy Kaling [00:38:28] One question that you have from a listener, Molly W from Eden Prairie, Minnesota. That sounds really idyllic. She said that one of my favorite movies growing up was the 2005 movie Bewitched. There’s a scene in the movie where Will Ferrell is looking at the mirror and Steve Carell pops up beside the mirror as Uncle Arthur. And Molly’s asking if in Michaels Dundie’s the same thing happens where Deangelo is looking in the mirror and Michael shows up inside. Was that a complete coincidence? It honestly was. I think it is a complete coincidence. I did not see the Bewitched movie, although maybe I should. I think as a director, this is going to sound so corny, I think I wanted to do something with reflections because it’s like a little bit tricky, but not too tricky. So I think that’s why I did it as a first time director.
Jenna [00:39:11] That reminded me of that advice that B.J. Novak gave about directing when he came on the podcast. Remember, he said that advice that someone gave him is to just have one shot that’s interesting.
Angela [00:39:21] One thing! One razzle dazzle.
Jenna [00:39:24] Yeah. Well, I’ll have you know that we shot all of these sequences for the video earlier in the week, so they were able to edit them together. And we were really watching that up on the big screen. And Randy wanted to give a shout out to Chris Shadley who was our playback technician. He was in charge of getting it all to playback on cue.
Angela [00:39:45] I remember us watching that in real time, and I thought it was hilarious. And then when I rewatched this episode, I caught myself out of character laughing.
Jenna [00:39:54] Really?
Angela [00:39:54] Yeah, several times I’m just laughing. Brian- Brian, too. We’re like, sitting next to each other.
Jenna [00:40:00] Well we used to have to wait, like, a month before we would see our episodes on TV, and it was always fun when you got to see a little something put together.
Angela [00:40:06] Yeah. It’s time for The Dundies to start. But Deangelo can’t do it. He’s run to the bathroom. He’s throwing up.
Jenna [00:40:13] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:40:14] Michael’s really trying to convince him to go back on. He says, you got to do it for all those kids out there. We think this is really going to be a big speech. But then he says, you know, the kids eating from the kids menu. Like what? And then.
Jenna [00:40:26] He means literally the kids out in the restaurant.
Angela [00:40:29] And Deangelo’s like, I can’t. And Michael’s like, It’s showtime. And he slaps him. And Deangelo says, stop hitting me. They end up both slapping each other, and then they’re ready to go.
Jenna [00:40:39] It’s showtime.
Angela [00:40:40] It’s showtime. Mindy also had something to share with us about this scene.
Mindy Kaling [00:40:44] One of my favorite parts of any episode was in The Injury when Michael needs help. But he’s in the toilet. We can’t even see him. And Steve is doing all this, like audio comedy off camera in the bathroom. And so I think in this episode, when Deangelo goes and throws up like, it’s ridiculous to like people barfing so much on The Office where we can’t see anything, right? Because it’s everything is mostly off camera. It’s just it’s just fun sometimes to do that.
Jenna [00:41:17] Well, whatever happened in the bathroom, it worked. Deangelo is going to take the stage and they’re going to start handing out awards. The first award is the Best Dad award, and it’s going to go to Jim.
Angela [00:41:28] Did you notice that the camera was positioned on Daryll and then it goes to Jim?
Jenna [00:41:33] No!
Angela [00:41:33] Yeah.
Jenna [00:41:34] Like at a real award show.
Angela [00:41:36] Exactly.
Jenna [00:41:37] That’s pretty great. Jim fails to thank Pam, the mother of his child.
Angela [00:41:43] Yeah.
Jenna [00:41:43] During his speech. And she has a little bit of sass about it.
Angela [00:41:46] The next award is the Best Mom award. And much like you, Jenna, if there had been a best deep dive award, you would thought that was going to you. Pam thinks she’s going to get best mom, but it’s Meredith.
Jenna [00:42:00] Yeah. One of my personal favorite pat myself on the back acting moments from the show is when they say the next award is going to be best Mom and Pam, kind of like shyly, is preparing herself to win.
Angela [00:42:18] There were a few awards we didn’t see in this episode. They’re in deleted scenes, and I think we should hear them. First up was Phyllis. Here is the Dundie that she got.
Michael Scott [00:42:28] The Redefining Beauty Award goes to Phyllis Vance!
Phyllis [00:42:37] This is for all the real women out there. Yeah.
Coworkers [00:42:43] Way to go, Phyllis! You go, girl!
Angela [00:42:48] People get so behind Phyllis on that award. The whole place erupts. Then it’s Angela’s award. Let’s hear what she got.
Angela Martin [00:42:56] This is very funny. This is a laugh riot. But you know what? I don’t care if you think I’m kind of a bitch. I’m also kind of dating a senator and kind of the happiest I’ve ever been.
Jenna [00:43:11] Hmm.
Angela [00:43:11] Yeah.
Jenna [00:43:13] Yes. You know, later in the episode, there’s a reference to the kind of a bitch award. We never saw anybody win it. It was you.
Angela [00:43:20] I kept my Dundie. I have both of mine. I have the tight ass award, and I have kind of a bitch. And they sit up on my shelf right next to my Emmys and SAG Awards.
Jenna [00:43:30] Pam does not get a Dundie in this episode.
Angela [00:43:32] I was fascinated by that.
Jenna [00:43:34] Yeah.
Angela [00:43:35] I read the shooting draft.
Jenna [00:43:37] Same. I was like, Am I forgetting something?
Angela [00:43:39] I went back to the shooting draft and it had the Dundie’s pitch list and it had Jim, Best Dad. Meredith, Best Mom. Pam, Best Kid.
Jenna [00:43:49] Oh. That would have been a funny picture. I mean, Michael did date her mom. I don’t know.
Jenna [00:43:58] Well, we never shot that. I never had a moment with the Dundies.
Angela [00:44:01] It wasn’t in the script.
Jenna [00:44:02] No.
Angela [00:44:04] Nope. It wasn’t ever even in the script. It was just on a pitch list. There was one that we did film that I wanted you to hear. It’s Kelly’s award. Let’s hear that one.
Kelly [00:44:14] Oh, man, this has been such a good year for women in paper. Am I right? Come on, guys. Give ourselves a hand. Women in paper. This is pretty awesome. So I don’t know why I’m up here and you’re not. I don’t know how I could have beaten you to get this, but I’m just going to take it so thank you so much, you guys.
Angela [00:44:35] This was part of the montage with Phyllis and Angela, but Kelly won the Women in Paper Award.
Jenna [00:44:41] Wow.
Angela [00:44:41] Mm hmm. She’s sorry you didn’t win it. She’s sorry. She, like, said that to everybody in the room. And then it’s time for the hottest person in the office. Ryan thinks it’s going to be him.
Jenna [00:44:53] Again.
Angela [00:44:53] Nope. Who’s it going to be?
Jenna [00:44:55] It’s Danny Cordray, everybody.
Angela [00:44:57] Yeah, but I’m so sorry he couldn’t attend tonight. But don’t worry. Michael took the camera crew to his house. It’s in deleted scenes. Let’s hear part of it.
Michael Scott [00:45:06] Hottest in the office goes to Danny Cordray! Danny could not be here tonight to accept his award, so he is live via satellite. Oh, Danny, are you there?
Danny Cordray [00:45:21] Hey, you guys. I wish I could be there in person to accept this Dundie award. Michael came to my house and gave it to me in person. Look, there he is.
Michael on video [00:45:32] Hey, everybody. Hey, Michael!
Michael Scott [00:45:35] Hey!
Danny Cordray [00:45:37] Oh, yeah, it’s very nice of you. Really.
Michael on video [00:45:40] Where are you going to put that?
Danny Cordray [00:45:41] I don’t know.
Michael on video [00:45:42] I think you should put it right here on the piano. Is he good looking?
Danny Cordray [00:45:49] That’s.
Michael on video [00:45:50] Look at him. Look at how good looking that guy is.
Danny Cordray [00:45:51] It’s already pretty embarrassing, Michael.
Michael on video [00:45:55] No way. I wouldn’t be embrarrassed.
Danny Cordray [00:45:56] Anyway, I appreciate you stopping by.
Michael on video [00:45:59] Us studs have to stay together. What are you doing for the rest of day?
Angela [00:46:13] It ends so awkward. And then Dwight goes, boing!
Jenna [00:46:18] Next up, Stanley is going to be presented with the Diabetes Award, and Phyllis has my favorite talking head. I love it so much. She’s like, You know, I have diabetes, too, but you don’t see me making a big deal about it.
Angela [00:46:34] So much Phyllis sass.
Jenna [00:46:36] I know. It’s like they’re friends, but there’s so much competition there.
Angela [00:46:41] Stanley and Phyllis are frenemies.
Jenna [00:46:42] They are true frenemies.
Angela [00:46:44] Well, during all of these awards in the shooting draft, Michael goes over to check on Dwight, and Dwight is really starting to unravel. It’s also in deleted scenes.
Michael Scott [00:46:56] It’s going pretty well.
Dwight [00:46:58] Same crap, different Dundies.
Michael Scott [00:47:00] Yeah, Deangelo is great, but he’s a little green. Gonna need you to keep an eye on him in the future there.
Dwight [00:47:05] You can count on me. That’s what I do, keep the boss on track.
Michael Scott [00:47:09] Thank you, Dwight.
Dwight [00:47:10] Yes, master. You’re welcome, master. Anything for you, master.
Angela [00:47:16] Michael’s like, Uh. Okay.
Jenna [00:47:19] Yikes.
Angela [00:47:20] Yeah. And then next up… Salt in the wound. Dwight wins the Promising Assistant Manager Award and tosses it right in the trash.
Jenna [00:47:31] Yeah. I don’t know if you noticed during this scene at 13 minutes and 17 seconds, Erin is holding up a cue card.
Angela [00:47:37] Yeah.
Jenna [00:47:37] And if you read the cue card, Dwight’s last name is spelled S-H-R-U-T-E instead of S-C–H. When this episode aired, fans pointed this out. They wanted to know why. Well, the reason it was written that way is because that is how it was scripted. But it was not intended as a joke. You know, Mindy wrote this episode and she revealed that that is how she spells Schrute. And this reveal for Mindy began a hilarious, snarky text exchange between Mindy Kaling and Mike Schur. Mindy said, I have spelled it Shrute, S-H-R-U-T-E in every single script I’ve written since Hot Girl. Have I been wrong this whole time? That’s what she tweeted. And Mike Schur wrote back, Yes. S-C-H-R-U-T-E. Don’t worry. It’s not like you’ve been writing lines for that character since 2004.
Angela [00:48:34] Damn.
Jenna [00:48:35] And Mindy wrote back, This is legit mortifying. I guess you have a leg up on its spelling because you’re in the Schrute clan. To which Mike replied, I also have a leg up on it because I saw the way it was spelled in the pilot and continued to spell it that way. #Burn.
Angela [00:48:53] Note to self to not get in an argument with Mike Schur.
Jenna [00:48:57] I know!
Angela [00:48:59] Oh, my lord.
Jenna [00:49:00] Yeah. But if you go to 13 minutes, 17 seconds, you can see it right there on the cue card. It’s funny to me that the people writing the cue card didn’t question it in any way. They didn’t say, Hey, Mindy, did you mean this? They just they’re like, they were just like, No, this is what the script says, so I’m going to do it.
Angela [00:49:18] Next up, Erin is going to win Cutest Redhead in the office. And Meredith is pissed off.
Jenna [00:49:24] She throws her Best Mom trophy on the ground. She would rather be cutest redhead than a great mom. Interesting. Erin is going to go up to receive her award. She is so genuinely delighted. She’s never won an award in her life.
Angela [00:49:38] Yeah, she says, You know, it’s true what they said. The Dundies are magical. But I don’t feel it. Because… Gabe, I don’t think we should be together.
Jenna [00:49:50] Yeah, she’s with the wrong person.
Angela [00:49:52] Oh.
Jenna [00:49:54] For her, the awards have become this truth serum.
Angela [00:49:58] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:49:58] And she is going to break up with Gabe in front of everybody.
Angela [00:50:02] And then Gabe goes up on stage.
Jenna [00:50:05] So odd.
Angela [00:50:05] Why doesn’t he just leave? I was very curious about this, so I went to the shooting draft.
Jenna [00:50:10] Okay?
Angela [00:50:11] He’s going to respond to Erin’s breakup also on the microphone publicly. And Deangelo says to him, Since you’re up here anyway, do you want your Dundie? It’s the Ichabod Crane Award.
Jenna [00:50:24] Sorry, that made me laugh out loud.
Angela [00:50:30] So I don’t know if the whole reason they brought him up on stage was for that Dundie joke, but then it didn’t make it in.
Jenna [00:50:36] Things are going to get more awkward rather than less awkward when Michael presents the award to Deangelo for Best Dundie’s Host.
Angela [00:50:47] Oh, man. Poor Dwight.
Jenna [00:50:50] I know. Dwight is so hurt. And then in order to make his speech, Deangelo has to put on the Walkman. And then he’s screaming.
Angela [00:50:58] The manager of the restaurant has had it. First, Kevin is coloring on the tablecloth. Then they talked about STDs, and now he’s just screaming into the microphone.
Jenna [00:51:09] Yeah, he’s going to throw everyone out. The manager was played by Bill Coleus and according to his bio, he has also appeared in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Criminal Minds, and over 50 national commercials.
Angela [00:51:23] Wow.
Jenna [00:51:23] Yes. He says in his bio that the commercials have allowed him to visit Buenos Aires, hang out with James Gandolfini, and get naked on 43rd Street.
Angela [00:51:34] What ad was that?
Jenna [00:51:35] Don’t know. It didn’t say.
Angela [00:51:37] Hmm. Everyone is now just sort of milling about outside. Go to 16 minutes, 50 seconds in the background of Michael’s talking head. Did anyone else catch that Paul and Rainn and Will were talking and Rainn motions to Will that he has something in the corner of his mouth. I don’t know if it’s food or what, and then immediately Will wipes off his mouth.
Jenna [00:51:58] Did anyone catch it? How about Justine Y from San Francisco, California?
Angela [00:52:04] Yes, Justine!
Jenna [00:52:05] She wrote in that exact background catch. Now Pam is going to approach Michael and suggest that they all grab some ice cream and go back to the office and keep the night going.
Angela [00:52:16] And what’s in her hand, Jenna?
Jenna [00:52:17] It’s so weird. It’s a Dundie.
Angela [00:52:20] Yeah.
Jenna [00:52:21] She carrying Jim’s best dad Dundie? I could not. This threw me off. This is what made me obsessed with trying to figure out if my memory was wrong and Pam had won a Dundie.
Angela [00:52:32] There is no way that Michael Scott didn’t give Pam a Dundie. There is no way.
Jenna [00:52:38] Well, it’s not in the script. We never shot it. I kept both of my Dundies. I can promise you, if I had been given a Dundie that night, I would have it.
Angela [00:52:47] Hmm. We kept all of our Dundies.
Jenna [00:52:49] Of course. We got to take them home with us.
Angela [00:52:51] On the way back to Dunder Mifflin, I guess Deangelo really had to pee and he wanted to use the bathroom, but Michael was like, No, it’s close. Just get in the car.
Jenna [00:52:58] They’re not going to get seats together in the conference room if they don’t leave now.
Angela [00:53:01] Yeah, and Dwight just starts to go off. He goes off on Deangelo, he goes off on the Dundies, what people wore, that the awards were stupid. And Michael is ticked off.
Jenna [00:53:11] Yeah, they get in a pretty big argument and then Dwight gets out of the car and runs away.
Angela [00:53:16] Well, when everyone is walking in, you can see that Ryan has a Dundie in his hand.
Jenna [00:53:20] Now I do remember he really did win a Dundie. We just it got cut.
Angela [00:53:25] Yeah. In the shooting draft it says that Ryan wins the Most Classically Handsome Dundie.
Jenna [00:53:31] Yes. And he’s very pleased with that.
Angela [00:53:32] Once we get in the conference room, Darryl has set up a keyboard in the corner and two awards are given in the conference room. One was in the shooting draft. We also filmed it. It’s in deleted scenes. Darryl would have won the Moving On Up award.
Jenna [00:53:46] And then Michael is going to present Andy with the Doobie Doobie Pothead Stoner of the Year award because he tried pot in college. And oh boy, this kicks off a moment.
Angela [00:53:59] Does it ever? Andy accepts and he tells Michael, thank you. And then he says, No, thank you for everything.
Jenna [00:54:07] Did you hear Ed’s voice crack?
Angela [00:54:08] I did.
Jenna [00:54:10] Yeah. That’s just real emotion.
Angela [00:54:13] Yeah. If you go to 18 minutes, 53 seconds.
Jenna [00:54:16] He’s emotional because he knows what’s coming. Music is going to start playing and everyone in the conference room is going to sing a tribute song to Michael. We are going to sing a version of Seasons of Love from the musical Rent.
Angela [00:54:32] So Jenna, right as the music starts, there would have been a cutaway Jim and Pam double talking head.
Jenna [00:54:39] Mmhmm.
Angela [00:54:39] And I wanted to share it with you. Jim says, We practiced every day after work in the warehouse. And Pam says, We just thought it would be a nice thing to do. And then it would cut back and everyone would start to sing.
Jenna [00:54:51] Well we practiced a lot as a cast for this moment.
Angela [00:54:55] Yes.
Jenna [00:54:55] And, Angela, you thought we should hear this?
Angela [00:54:59] I do. I mean, my memory was just it was so special to us. You know, Phyllis and I had to sing together. Email forwards you made us read.
Jenna [00:55:11] I remember.
Angela [00:55:11] And we would meet in my trailer and practice (SINGS) Email forwards you made us read. It’s a lot.
Jenna [00:55:16] We all got like a digital file with the music. And we would do that. We would just sing our little phrase, and practice and practice and practice.
Angela [00:55:26] And because Phyllis and I had to do ours together, we would meet and practice.
Jenna [00:55:30] Well, we got a fan mail flurry. People wanted to know, Is it true that the Seasons of Love parody The Office sings for Michael in this episode was actually a surprise for Steve Carell? So yes, it was. Yes and no. This story has gotten embellished. So the truth is, Steve knew this song existed. It was in the shooting draft.
Angela [00:55:55] Yeah.
Jenna [00:55:55] It was part of the table read.
Angela [00:55:56] Yeah.
Jenna [00:55:57] But we practiced it privately. He was never part of any rehearsals. So the first time he heard us sing together was in that room on the first take. We even did our on camera rehearsals without him.
Angela [00:56:12] Yeah. So what you see in Steve’s face, you know, his emotion… I mean, yes, he’s a great actor but also, Steve, our friend, was watching all of our hard work and just showing him how much we loved him and were going to miss him.
Jenna [00:56:27] When I look at Steve’s face in that scene, I see a person who’s really in the moment who is taking in everything he’s about to leave behind.
Angela [00:56:37] Yeah.
Jenna [00:56:38] And I think he was feeling that in the moment. I have actually talked to him about it and he said it was incredibly moving.
Angela [00:56:44] Yeah. And we all cheer up. In fact, Phyllis and I held hands for part of it. I just think we need to hear it.
Michael Scott [00:56:56] Oh, my God. Something’s happening.
Andy [00:57:00] 9986000 minutes. We actually sat down and did the math.
Cast [00:57:10] 9986000 minutes. That’s how many minutes that you worked here.
Pam [00:57:18] In costumes.
Jim [00:57:20] And impressions.
Oscar [00:57:20] In meetings.
Erin and Kelly [00:57:21] In cups of coffee.
Kevin [00:57:24] For birthdays.
Stanley [00:57:25] More meetings and-
Phyllis and Angela [00:57:26] Email forwards you made us read.
Cast [00:57:29] 9,986,000 minutes. That’s that’s like watching Die Hard 80,000 times.
Meredith [00:57:37] You hit me with your car.
Ryan [00:57:40] You help me get off drugs.
Creed [00:57:42] I watch you when you sleep.
Oscar [00:57:45] I forgive you for kissing me.
Cast [00:57:48] Remember to call (Oh you got to remember to call) Remember to call (love is a gift from up above) Remember to call (text or email or call).
Deangelo [00:57:48] Measure, measure your life in love.
Cast [00:58:11] Remember to call. Remember to call. (Deangelo riffs)
Jenna [00:58:27] So sweet.
Angela [00:58:27] I love it every time. I just love it. I want you guys to know in the shooting draft, right after Deangelo hits that super high note, there was a talking head written for him where he would have said, I’m not a good performer, but I can sing like a (BLEEP) angel.
Jenna [00:58:47] Well, we got a lot of fan mail flurries about the song Angela. And one of the biggest was something I did not notice until I read our mail. I don’t know how I missed it. I think I was just overcome with emotion. But fans pointed out that Rainn Wilson as Dwight, was not in the scene.
Angela [00:59:06] It’s crazy to think about.
Jenna [00:59:09] Yeah. And they said, We get why he wasn’t in the scene. It’s because in the scene prior, he gets mad, he gets out of the car. But people said, considering how monumental a scene this was for both the show and the cast, it really feels like he is missing. A lot of people felt that it should have been Dwight standing next to Michael instead of Deangelo.
Angela [00:59:29] Hmm.
Jenna [00:59:30] And people were hoping maybe Mindy could make sense of this. And here’s what she had to say.
Mindy Kaling [00:59:35] This is a question that you said a lot of people sent in, which was, why wasn’t Rainn a part of the song? We know why Dwight wasn’t in the scene. Because in the scene prior, he stormed out of the car. So it makes sense he wasn’t there. But considering how monumental a scene this was for both the show and the cast, it really feels like he’s missing. And so I have to say, I think this is a taste thing. I think that if it didn’t make sense emotionally in the episode for him to be there, and I think that orchestrating it so that Dwight would be there when it didn’t make sense for his character would have, I think, been a bridge too far. But I did feel like emotionally, it’s like what the cast, the actors and also the characters sort of wanted to express. And we know that, like, Steve is so good when Michael’s emotional, he’s like, and gets touched. So. And it just felt like was nearing the end so it needed to happen. But that’s my answer to that.
Angela [01:01:04] Well, we were really curious what it must have been like to direct such a huge moment. And we asked Mindy about it. Here’s what she had to say.
Mindy Kaling [01:01:13] I have to say it is so hard to direct an emotional goodbye like this. So much harder than directing a fight or even people kissing or romance. And obviously harder and I think harder than comedy. Because in comedy, you kind of know when you have a scene. But in something emotional when everyone’s coming together to sing, it’s very hard to give notes. Because if it, if everyone is like feeling it so emotionally and then you have a lot of notes, people kind of don’t want to hear it. They’re like, Don’t be a drag. We’re all like, in our feelings. And so that was, I think, one of the unique challenges of this episode.
Jenna [01:01:50] I hear that.
Angela [01:01:51] Yeah. I also know as a cast, we were so gutted and we were in our feelings.
Jenna [01:01:59] We were, yeah. We got one final fan mail flurry about this scene. People wanted to know who wrote the song. Well, Mindy wrote the lyrics, and Randy said that Eve Nelson, our go to composer, created that instrumental track that we sang along to. And we paid a royalty fee of $25,000 for the rights to the music. And people also wanted to know, is that an accurate number of minutes that Michael would have worked in the office? Or was it the number of minutes that Steve worked on the show? Well, Ange, I got out my calculator.
Angela [01:02:30] You did the math.
Jenna [01:02:31] I did. So what I did was I counted all the episodes that Steve has been in, and I assumed that we on average, we work about 60 hours a week per episode. So I added all that up and did the minutes. And I can tell you, it’s not the number of minutes that Steve worked on the show. It wasn’t enough minutes. So I’m going with the answer is the number of minutes Michael has worked at Dunder Mifflin, because also Michael has worked at Dunder Mifflin more than seven years, which is how long Steve worked on the show. I hope that clears things up for everyone. It was about 10 minutes of math.
Angela [01:03:10] I was going to say, how long did it take you to come to your conclusion?
Jenna [01:03:15] About 10 minutes. I mean, because I was trying to figure out a lot of things. I had to-
Angela [01:03:21] You had to.
Jenna [01:03:21] Count episodes and…
Angela [01:03:22] I would say that’s impressive. I think it would have taken me longer than 10 minutes.
Jenna [01:03:26] Maybe I’ll get a Dundie for best calculator work.
Angela [01:03:28] Yes.
Jenna [01:03:29] Mm hmm.
Angela [01:03:29] Next year, you’ll have to see.
Jenna [01:03:31] I’m on the edge of my seat.
Angela [01:03:34] Well, the episode is going to end with a tag. It’s a flashback to earlier in the evening, because Toby is going to win the Extreme Repulsiveness Award.
Jenna [01:03:43] Mm hmm.
Angela [01:03:44] Deangelo is reading the cue card. He’s like, Wait, what am I? He’s like.
Jenna [01:03:47] This is kind of mean.
Angela [01:03:49] Yeah. Toby doesn’t want to go accept it, but Oscar’s like, It’s his last Dundies, man. You gotta play along.
Jenna [01:03:54] Yeah. And he’s going to use his acceptance speech to come clean about the Scranton Strangler case for which he was a juror. And they found this person guilty, and he’s been given the death penalty, we find out. Toby’s now not so sure that guy really did it.
Angela [01:04:07] And that’s how it ends.
Jenna [01:04:08] Yeah!
Angela [01:04:09] It almost ends like midsentence.
Jenna [01:04:11] Yeah.
Angela [01:04:11] Like when I was watching it, I was like, wait, wait, that’s it?
Jenna [01:04:13] Well, that was Michael’s last Dundie’s. I’ve got a few extra tidbits here for the end of the episode. I didn’t know where to put this information, so I’ll tell it to you now.
Angela [01:04:24] Hmm.
Jenna [01:04:24] This episode was originally titled Goodbye Michael Part One, but it was renamed and given a new release date when NBC announced that Goodbye Michael, Steve’s actual final episode, could be a supersized episode. So then this became Michael’s last Dundies. But the original goodbye to Steve Carell on our show was going to be Dundie’s that flowed.
Both [01:04:47] Into Goodbye Michael. Yeah.
Jenna [01:04:51] My gosh, we’re literally speaking in unison. I also thought you might be wondering what Myles McNutt thought about this episode.
Angela [01:05:00] I have to tell you, from the very beginning of the episode, when you did Fast Facts, I thought for sure one of your fast facts was going to be what Myles McNutt thought of it. I have been waiting this whole episode. I can’t wait to hear.
Jenna [01:05:12] It was going to be. It was. But then yesterday, you asked me if you could have fast fact number three. So I had to move this information to the end of the episode. But I was not going to leave you hanging. Trust me. Myles McNutt gave it a B minus. B minus. He said he really liked the cold open and the closing song. But a lot of his review focused on comparing the two Dundie episodes, and he felt that the first one was superior and it was very hard to live in its shadow in Myles’s estimation.
Angela [01:05:47] Myles, so much more is happening in this episode than in the first Dundie’s. Your lead character is leaving the show. You have a lot of ground to cover. Myles, I think you’re being too harsh.
Jenna [01:05:59] I will end this with a letter from Autumn B in Wisconsin who said, Incredible Women of Office Ladies.
Angela [01:06:06] Thank you.
Jenna [01:06:07] Thank you. Autumn. After watching Michael’s Last Dundies, I watched the first one. Please, please do this. Watching these two episodes back to back illuminates the evolution of Michael Scott. A man yearning for belonging and acceptance becomes a man who has found his place, his confidence, his people, and his purpose. The contrast between the first and the last Dundies brings hope and comfort to all of us who believe that with time and conviction, we will become better versions of ourselves and live our best lives. Of all people, it was Michael Scott. Who would have thought?
Angela [01:06:44] Take that, Myles McNutt!
Jenna [01:06:46] That’s what I’m saying!
Angela [01:06:48] Go Autumn!
Jenna [01:06:48] I think you cannot compare one Dundies to another. You have to put them together, marry them, watch them together. And there you have your A-plus. Pen drop.
Angela [01:07:05] I did a visual bit on our podcast.
Jenna [01:07:08] You sure did. It’s your special talent.
Angela [01:07:12] You guys, that was Michael’s Last Dundies. Big thank you- (GAME SHOW MUSIC PLAYS)
Jenna [01:07:16] Oh!
Angela [01:07:16] Big thank you to Mindy Kaling for sending in audio clips.
Jenna [01:07:22] Thank you, Randy Cordray, for all your tidbits. Thank you to Sam and Cassi and Angela, our very own Michael Scott.
Angela [01:07:31] Have a great week. We’re going to take next week off, but then we’ll be back with Goodbye, Michael. Oh, my goodness.
Jenna [01:07:36] Oh, no, I’m not ready.
Sound effect [01:07:41] Oh yeah.
Jenna [01:07:43] 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.
Angela [01:07:59] Our theme song is Rubber Tree by Creed Bratton. For Ad Ad free versions of Office Ladies go to StitcherPremium.com. For a free one month trial of Stitcher Premium, use code Office.