August 16, 2022
This week we’re breaking down “Nepotism.” And holy smokes, it’s Season 7! Michael got his nephew, played by Evan Peters, a job at Dunder Mifflin and he’s terrible. Like soy ice cream and bagel chips terrible. The ladies tell you everything you want to know about the lip dub opening, and Kate Flannery sends in a clip about her experience being strapped to Brian Baumgartner’s back. Then Angela shares a story full of twists and turns about trying to find a Blu-ray player in her hometown so she could research this episode, Jenna explains a seemingly strange reaction Pam has in a conference room scene and the ladies wonder about being able to pee in the ocean. So bust out those dance moves, guitar riffs and magic tricks, and enjoy “Nepotism”!
133 — Nepotism
OFFICE 133 – Nepotism
Jenna [00:00:04] 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.
Angela [00:00:49] Woo hoo! We are here with Nepotism.
Jenna [00:00:51] And a big old lip dub to start this episode.
Angela [00:00:55] And we have all the details about it. Welcome to Office Ladies!
Jenna [00:00:58] Welcome to Office Ladies. It is Season seven episode one, written by Daniel Chun, directed by Jeffrey Blitz.
Angela [00:01:08] We’ve got some great fast facts today.
Jenna [00:01:11] We really do. And we did a real two hander on the fast facts today.
Angela [00:01:14] We did.
Jenna [00:01:14] We did them together.
Angela [00:01:15] We did.
Jenna [00:01:17] And I loved it. I hope we’ll always do it this way.
Angela [00:01:18] I see what you’re doing. Season 7 you’re like, Ange, this is it. Fast facts have become a two hander.
Jenna [00:01:28] Here is your summary. Summer is over. Once again, the cameras did not follow us over the summer for a reason we don’t know.
Angela [00:01:37] Yeah, We don’t know.
Jenna [00:01:37] They take the summer off. Dwight now owns Scranton Business Park. He did it. Michael has brought in a new assistant for the office, Luke, but nobody likes him. He’s completely incompetent. Michael will not fire him because we find out that Luke is his nephew.
Angela [00:01:58] Yeah.
Jenna [00:02:00] Gabe and Erin are dating.
Angela [00:02:02] Yeah.
Jenna [00:02:03] That happened over the summer when the cameras were off.
Angela [00:02:06] Yeah. Apparently, Gabe, you know, checked in with Andy first about it, and he said it was fine.
Jenna [00:02:11] Yeah. Andy is pretending like he’s fine.
Angela [00:02:14] Uh huh.
Jenna [00:02:16] And finally, in this episode, Pam is going to play a trick on Dwight because she messed up this sort of long con prank that Jim was working on with Dwight’s keys, and she wants to try to make it up to him.
Angela [00:02:28] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:02:29] So that’s what’s happening in this episode.
Angela [00:02:31] Should we get into fast facts?
Jenna [00:02:33] Yes! See how excited you are for them.
Angela [00:02:35] I am!
Jenna [00:02:35] Because you are part of the fast facts.
Angela [00:02:37] That’s not why I’m excited.
Jenna [00:02:37] Look at your enthusiasm.
Angela [00:02:39] That’s not why I’m excited.
Jenna [00:02:39] You could have this every week.
Angela [00:02:42] Oh stop.
Jenna [00:02:43] Fast fact number one: this was our season premiere and also Steve Carell’s last season. Like we said last week, before season six ended, the cast and crew knew that this would be his last season, but the news was officially announced publicly over the summer break and there were a lot of opinions about it.
Angela [00:03:04] Oh yeah.
Jenna [00:03:05] Mostly people were saying that The Office would be dead without Steve.
Angela [00:03:08] Yeah. Yeah.
Jenna [00:03:09] This news also put a lot of focus on our season premiere episode. In fact, it was seen by 8.4 million viewers, which was a big bump from our season six finale of 6.6 million. So almost two more million people tuned in.
Angela [00:03:24] That’s a lot.
Jenna [00:03:25] I know. The writer spent a lot of time over the summer talking about how to craft Steve’s last season. Their big question was, Why does Michael leave Dunder Mifflin?
Angela [00:03:37] Yeah, because he loves Dunder Mifflin. It’s his family.
Jenna [00:03:39] Exactly. Well, Paul Lieberstein said one thing they discussed was Michael getting fired at the end. And we had set this up a little bit with the problems with Sabre and the printers. He’d become kind of like the spokesperson.
Angela [00:03:52] Right.
Jenna [00:03:53] So there was discussion like maybe that was all going to cave in and he’d have to leave.
Angela [00:03:57] Yeah, he’d be the fall guy for Sabre.
Jenna [00:04:00] Yes. But ultimately, they thought that was like not doing right by Michael Scott. They decided that they really wanted him to grow. They wanted him to find love. They wanted him to have a really positive and iconic goodbye.
Angela [00:04:15] So I listened to the DVD commentary for this episode. By the way, you guys, I have a whole story about what it took for me just to watch a DVD. It was a journey.
Jenna [00:04:24] Amazing. Because you were in Texas.
Angela [00:04:26] Yeah.
Jenna [00:04:26] Visiting your family.
Angela [00:04:27] Yeah. In a very small town. Anyway, I will save that. We have so much to cover. But I have to share later. Anyway, so I finally was able to watch this DVD. It featured Craig Robinson, Creed Bratton, writers Danny Chun, B.J. Novak and Paul Lieberstein. Danny, B.J. and Paul talked about this being Michael’s last season and how they wanted to approach storylines for him. And I found this conversation so interesting. Jenna we love the whole writers process. We love it. And they shared that this episode kicked off a change in Michael because his coworkers were his family and him bringing his actual nephew, his actual family into the office, he has to try to figure out how to separate work from family. And they also said that they just wanted to show Michael’s growth as a person. Here, they say it better than I do. Let’s listen.
B.J. Novak [00:05:17] You know, telling Michael that’s mixing business and family, these are his two favorite things.
Paul Lieberstein [00:05:22] Right.
B.J. Novak [00:05:23] So he, of all people, would not see the problem here.
Paul Lieberstein [00:05:26] He just couldn’t understand.
Danny Chun [00:05:28] And this was kind of this came about from us talking about Steve’s last season and what are the stories that are kind of quintessential Michael stories that we just never told. And we were able to kind of have him grow in a way that he wasn’t-.
B.J. Novak [00:05:44] Yeah. The whole season, we approached Michael finally letting Michael have grown of it by the end of an episode, which we generally never did.
Creed Bratton [00:05:56] Sending him off in style.
Danny Chun [00:05:57] Yeah, we, you know, we wanted him to be like a more of a whole person by the time he left.
B.J. Novak [00:06:02] Yeah, we knew more or less how he was going to leave.
Paul Lieberstein [00:06:06] Yeah. Often up till up till this season, Michael would just find a new level of denial to end an episode.
B.J. Novak [00:06:12] Right. Right. And that would be funny.
Paul Lieberstein [00:06:15] Yeah.
B.J. Novak [00:06:17] But we could start firing off our our Michael self awareness gun because we knew we only had a few bullets anyway.
Danny Chun [00:06:23] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:06:25] Mm hmm. Yeah, I remember that. That there was this just overall idea of Michael growing into a man that could leave and marry Holly because they knew that was the end.
Angela [00:06:37] That was the goal.
Jenna [00:06:38] Yes. But we only had one season to get him there now.
Angela [00:06:41] Right. And it is interesting now, as we rewatch this whole season seven, you are going to see Michael becoming more self-aware, more aware of his actions and how they affect other people.
Jenna [00:06:52] Really cool. All right. Fast fact number two, we have a couple of casting announcements. First up, Zach Woods, who plays Gabe, was made a series regular for season seven. We were so happy to have him. And speaking of Michael Scott’s nephew, Luke, Luke was played by Evan Peters. And boy, did we get a fan mail flurry.
Angela [00:07:15] I bet we did. I mean, Evan’s career has just skyrocketed.
Jenna [00:07:21] Oh, yeah. Fan question from Olivia R in Saint Louis, Missouri. Hi, ladies. Did you know that Evan Peters grew up in Saint Louis? Jenna, he grew up in the suburb of Ballwin. Do you know it? I just love all of the Saint Louis connections on The Office because I am from there myself. Well, Olivia. Yes, I know Ballwin because I grew up in Balwyn.
Angela [00:07:45] Wait. You and Evan grew up in the same part of town?
Jenna [00:07:48] Yes. Yes. In Ballwin Missouri, a suburb of Saint Louis. Not at the same time. I am significantly older than Evan.
Angela [00:07:58] I wasn’t going to say anything.
Jenna [00:07:59] Possible I could be his mother. But yes. Ballwin, Missouri, home of Queenie Park. I’m sure he must have ice skated at Queenie Park. Same as me. Great part of town.
Angela [00:08:11] How about that.
Jenna [00:08:11] I know. Another fan question from Sierra P in Gresham, Oregon. I have to share a Monk connection. Monk was randomly on TV the other day and Evan Peters was on.
Angela [00:08:25] No way.
Jenna [00:08:26] It was season seven, episode two, Mr. Monk and the Genius.
Angela [00:08:30] No way.
Jenna [00:08:32] Lady, get this.
Angela [00:08:32] I have a connection to Evan!
Jenna [00:08:34] Yeah! I’ve got a St Louis connection. You’ve got a Monk connection.
Angela [00:08:38] Okay. Okay.
Jenna [00:08:39] Also, lady.
Angela [00:08:41] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:08:42] He was on House.
Angela [00:08:43] No way.
Jenna [00:08:44] So we’ve got another guest star in the house.
Angela [00:08:47] Oh, you love that pun. It’s like your favorite pun.
Jenna [00:08:50] It’s going to be my new thing. Every guest star, I’m going to see if they were on House.
Angela [00:08:54] Oh, Lordy.
Jenna [00:08:55] Get ready for it, everyone. You’ve just got three seasons of me doing that. You’re probably happy I didn’t think of it sooner. And I’m sad. I’ll tell you a little bit about Evan, guys. He moved to Los Angeles when he was 15 years old with his mom to pursue his acting career. He landed roles in film and TV productions such as Parenthood, One Tree Hill, The Mentalist, House, Monk. He’s probably best known for his work in nine seasons of the American Horror Story Anthology and the X-Men film series.
Angela [00:09:28] Quicksilver! He’s Quicksilver.
Jenna [00:09:30] I know. Evan also recently won a primetime Emmy Award for his work in Mare of Easttown.
Angela [00:09:36] He was so good in that.
Jenna [00:09:38] I was very I don’t want to give a spoiler but I was very upset.
Angela [00:09:40] Don’t give a spoiler.
Angela [00:09:42] I know it wrecked me. We won’t say what happened.
Jenna [00:09:45] We won’t say.
Angela [00:09:45] Oh, he was so good in it. With David Denman!
Jenna [00:09:48] Crossover connection with David Denman. There’s another crossover connection.
Angela [00:09:53] Okay.
Jenna [00:09:54] The Office was not his first time working with Steve Carell. They were also in a film together called Sleepover from 2004.
Angela [00:10:03] I saw that. Is Steve like a mall cop or something?
Jenna [00:10:06] Yeah. He’s like a comedic security guard.
Angela [00:10:09] Yes.
Jenna [00:10:10] And it’s basically about these four girls who are having a sleepover and then they go on this wild.
Angela [00:10:17] Night out.
Jenna [00:10:18] Like scavenger hunt. And then Evan is part of a group of guys. It’s a very comedic role. Like, he’s very goofy in it. He’s one of the high school kids. He has an amazing dance number.
Angela [00:10:29] I saw that so long ago.
Jenna [00:10:31] Mm hmm. I don’t think he and Steve had any scenes together in that, though. But there is also going to be, after he did his role in The Office, a future crossover connection, which is that he was in the movie Kick-Ass with Clark Duke.
Angela [00:10:46] Evan, you have so many Office crossovers.
Jenna [00:10:48] I know.
Angela [00:10:50] You can also come hang out with us anytime and you can talk all about it.
Jenna [00:10:53] Yeah. Come on over.
Angela [00:10:55] Come on over.
Jenna [00:10:56] We’ll give you some shortbread cookies and Josh will bake something. And I’ll make you a gooey butter cake.
Angela [00:11:03] There you go.
Jenna [00:11:04] To remind you of home.
Angela [00:11:05] Saint Louis.
Jenna [00:11:06] All right, lady. Do you want a sip of tea or something? Because.
Angela [00:11:10] I will. I have made myself a wonderful iced tea because lip dub is about to happen.
Jenna [00:11:16] That’s right. Our fast fact three is going to be breaking down that famous lip dub cold open. We got so many questions about this lip dub. I think we should just go through them one by one. We reached out to a lot of folks to get these answers for you.
Angela [00:11:34] We did. We were busy.
Jenna [00:11:35] We were. It was fun.
Angela [00:11:37] It was really fun. I was also just so impressed with how quickly people got back to us. So thank you to everyone we reached out to. Jenna, list them off.
Jenna [00:11:45] We reached out to Randy Cordray, of course, our cinematographer, Matt Sohn, our editor, Dave Rogers, Kate Flannery, Creed Bratton. And there was also a great breakdown with our writer Danny Chun and our first A.D., Kelly Cantley over on OfficeTally.com. And Angela, you got some tidbits from the DVD commentary. So without further ado, let’s get started.
Angela [00:12:07] Question number one, what was the inspiration for this cold open?
Jenna [00:12:12] Well, first off, lip dubs were very popular at this time.
Angela [00:12:15] Crazy popular.
Jenna [00:12:17] The idea was like you and a group of friends or a lot of times coworkers, actually, you would film yourself lip synching to a song. And it was supposed to happen all in one take but move to various locations.
Angela [00:12:30] Yeah, I remember one that was going around that everyone was watching was a bunch of office coworkers at a company called Connected Ventures. And they filmed it one night after work, and it was so fun. So guess what? The Dunder Mifflin gang wants to get in on this. Dunder Mifflin;s lip dub starts with Andy in the elevator. He sings Nobody But Me performed by the Human Beinz. And he dances to the front door of Dunder Mifflin. Someone flips the blinds to read lip dub. Who’s that person?
Jenna [00:13:00] Someone. Someone did.
Angela [00:13:02] That would be Pam. The door opens and all of a sudden everyone is dancing in the bullpen. Erin is on roller skates. It goes all the way through the kitchen into the break room and back, and it ends with confetti. And everyone participates pretty much except for Darryl, Angela and Stanley barely participates until the end.
Jenna [00:13:21] And Ryan uses it as an opportunity to promote Wuphf dot com.
Angela [00:13:25] Right.
Jenna [00:13:26] I have to say, my favorite part of the clip is Kelly in front of the fan.
Angela [00:13:31] In front of the fan.
Jenna [00:13:32] I just love it.
Angela [00:13:34] I love Kate strapped to Brian’s back. But we’ll get to that.
Jenna [00:13:38] Okay. Well, Danny Chun said that the writers got the idea to do an Office lip dub back in April or May before the summer break, before the end of season six. He said they’d been just watching lip dubs like we all were, but he thought what I’d love to see is one that’s kind of full of mistakes.
Angela [00:13:56] Yeah.
Jenna [00:13:57] And he said that felt like a fun idea to play with. But Danny said they kind of forgot about the idea for a while. But when it came time to pitch on the season premiere, Danny brought it up again.
Angela [00:14:07] On the DVD commentary, Danny said that this cold open lip dub was one of the most fun things he’s ever been a part of. He said he wrote it in one day and it was originally supposed to start in the parking lot, and then it was going to come through the warehouse and end up in the office. But since none of those buildings are connected in real life, as you know, Jenna.
Jenna [00:14:25] Yes.
Angela [00:14:26] They could not do it in one take. So our director, Jeff Blitz, suggested it all take place in the main office so that we could do that whole one take look.
Jenna [00:14:35] That leads me into our next question, which was how many takes did you have to do? And was it really one take or was there some sneaky editing involved? Well, guys, this kind of depends on who you ask. This was very funny.
Angela [00:14:51] Everyone’s memory was a little different on this one.
Jenna [00:14:54] According to Danny Chun, it was one long, continuous take, and we did it about three or four times. My memory was that it was one long take and I remembered that we did three. Angela, what did you remember?
Angela [00:15:11] I remembered that it was all one long take as well, because it was a domino effect of things. So I was there in Darryl’s office and I had to shut the door. But me shutting the door cued Andy to say, Go, go, go. So I just remember all of these moments. And we did it all in one take. But I do remember that we got it pretty quickly, like we were impressed with ourselves. We’re like, Oh my gosh, we got that.
Jenna [00:15:34] Yeah, same memory. Well, when we reached out to cinematographer Matt Sohn, he confirmed that we did do this as one long, continuous take. However, he said that they did work in a couple of spots where we could cut if we needed to, but we did shoot it as one long take. So then when we reached out to our editor, Dave Rogers, he actually went back and checked his files. He said we did five takes.
Angela [00:16:04] And he sent them to us.
Jenna [00:16:05] Amazing. He said we used a combination of take four and take five. So he said it’s mostly all take five. But we cut when Angela slams Darryl’s office door and then we cut on the whip to take four as the camera moves by Phyllis dancing and heads into Michael’s office as he performs the magic tricks with his wand. And then we whip out back to take five as Andy yells, “streamers”. And then we stayed in take five until the end. And Dave said, looking at all the takes, he thinks the reason we did this was because Steve’s magic in his office was best in take four. And they really wanted that magic take in the episode. I just have to give a big thank you to Dave Rogers because we all had different memories and he had the answer.
Angela [00:17:00] Yeah. Thank you, Dave.
Jenna [00:17:01] Incidentally, in terms of Michael’s magic, Danny Chun shared that they basically just gave Steve a bunch of dorky magic tricks and let Steve improvise it. So each of those magic takes in his office were a little bit different, except for the fire part.
Angela [00:17:17] Yeah, they had a magician’s helper named Amos Levkovic. He was hiding behind Michael’s door to pre-set that flame trick at the end. So here were all of Michael’s tricks: a dove comes out of his wand. Flowers appear out of his cane. And then, of course, that flame in his hand.
Jenna [00:17:35] I remember Steve loved that dove coming out of the wand. And he does it like three times.
Angela [00:17:41] He did. I know.
Jenna [00:17:42] It’s so funny. All right, let’s see. Next question. How did they choose which song to use? Well, that was all, Danny. It was the only song he considered. He said he really wanted a song that was, quote, short, upbeat, fun to lip sync to, and not too current. Randy said it cost us $50,000 to get the song rights. And we should probably add that we could really hear that song. They had speakers like hidden all around the set, and it was really playing the song. We were really doing, like, lip synching.
Angela [00:18:14] Yeah. And I mean, I don’t think you can fake that that kind of energy that a song brings. I was so glad that they were playing it throughout the office.
Jenna [00:18:22] Yes.
Angela [00:18:23] Our next questions are, who came up with the choreography and what was the rehearsal process like? This was heavily choreographed, you guys. So the lip dub was choreographed by Mary Ann Kellogg. She planned it out with a team of dancers. They shared on the DVD commentary that every single detail you see was planned. Randy Cordray even sent us their rehearsal video. I loved watching it, Jenna.
Jenna [00:18:49] Me too. They had all these dancers doing our parts.
Angela [00:18:53] Way better than we did them, by the way. Like real dancers. They were amazing. The rehearsal dancers need a shout out. They were Tammy To, Lauren Marie Menendez, Michael Katherine Pena, Jennifer Mimi Karsh, Aaron Cash and Jon Todd. They were so great. We couldn’t have done this without them. Randy Cordray said We can put the rehearsal in our insta stories so you guys can watch it. And Danny said they had scripted out all the beats, but there were little things that were tricky. For example, getting Erin from reception to the kitchen in time, or the fact that he wrote in the script that Meredith is strapped to Kevin’s back in the break room.
Jenna [00:19:31] Oh, yeah. He just wrote that down.
Angela [00:19:32] Yeah.
Jenna [00:19:33] But how to make that happen?
Angela [00:19:34] Exactly. Kelly Cantley shared that our special effects coordinator, Mike Thompson, built the harness that Kate had to wear. And you guys, I reached out to Kate because I was like, Kate, will you please tell me about being strapped to Brian’s back? How did you do it? What was the process? Here’s what she had to say.
Kate Flannery [00:19:53] Hey, it’s Kate Flannery. Okay, so this is the deal. I was on a harness on Brian’s back. There was a table behind us so that I wasn’t putting all my weight on him the entire time. So I would squat on the table if it was high up. Just to get my weight off of his back. Like, don’t break another actor. Don’t do it. Anyway. So I’m on his back on this crazy harness. And then he turns around. And I have the word nobody on my stomach. Okay, the first time we do it, it’s perfect. The whole thing was perfect. Like, you guys, there’s no cut in a lip dub. It has to be all one take. So everybody has to get their part right. Everybody. And we did. Except that they felt like my ‘nobody’ was too faded. The marker had like absorbed into my skin. So I feel like I let everybody down. So we had to do- we did- I think we did two more takes for safety. But I still feel like we would have had it on the first one if you could read my ‘nobody’. So my pasty white skin absorbed the Sharpie. It was yeah, it took a couple days for it to come off. I’ll be honest with you. It’s kind of weird to look in the mirror when you’re taking a shower or getting dressed, and your stomach says, Nobody. Ugh. Pfft. Don’t try this at home, folks.
Angela [00:21:24] But she said that nobody, they had to go back and write it over and, you know, really darken it. And it was there for days.
Jenna [00:21:32] Well, I loved this day. I remember we came in early and we rehearsed and then we went to hair and makeup. And I remember Randy told us we had the whole day we should just take the day.
Angela [00:21:43] Right. No stress.
Jenna [00:21:44] Yeah. And all the dancers were there. We watched their video and then whoever was dancing, our part would show us our part.
Angela [00:21:51] And show us the timing.
Jenna [00:21:52] Mm hmm. Yes. So Randy told me that, yes, we started rehearsing at 7:15 in the morning. We got our first take at 11:23. That’s the precision of Randy Cordray. He knows the exact moment.
Angela [00:22:05] He’s like an air traffic controller. Your flight will leave at 7:12. Okay. Okay. Alright, Randy.
Jenna [00:22:11] Exactly. And we wrapped for the day at 1:36. And it was just so much fun.
Angela [00:22:17] That’s an early wrap day for us, you guys. So that meant we had the whole afternoon. We were probably so excited.
Jenna [00:22:21] I know. I remember our biggest hurdle was that there was a big clean up between each take with all the streamers and everything.
Angela [00:22:26] Right, confetti.
Jenna [00:22:29] But besides that, we were able to really go through those takes pretty quickly. Angela, I got a fan question from Ian O in South Africa and Diana T in Paris, France. Two International folks.
Angela [00:22:43] Oh, yeah.
Jenna [00:22:44] Who are wondering, Angela, were you bummed that you couldn’t really participate in the lip dub festivities?
Angela [00:22:52] I mean, you know me in real life. I wanted to be on those roller skates. I wanted to zip through. I was so excited. It looked so fun. But it made sense that my character would not want to participate. But I still got to be in it. You know, I was glad that at least I had that little moment with Darryl and I yelled at the camera and slammed the door. So we were in there the whole time, and as the camera went past us into the kitchen, we got a little bit of a break. But I have a great memory of that day because it was pretty relaxing. I didn’t actually have to do any heavy lifting in the lip dub. I kind of got to watch it. And you know Craig is such a easy person to hang out with. We had a fun time. We were sort of like the goldfish in the glass bowl, like watching, watching the humans go by. Jenna, what about you? Did you have fun? You got to dance, and you love to dance. You got to do a shimmy.
Jenna [00:23:39] I know.
Angela [00:23:40] But you had to go backwards. Was that hard?
Jenna [00:23:42] That was really tricky. So it was a little stressful because Ed and I had to start it off. And if we didn’t start off with the right timing, then forget it. We should just not even continue. And that’s really me pulling the blinds. And then I had to dance backwards into a very specific spot where I’m hiding people behind me who can jump out. So that was like a big choreography between me and Matt Sohn, our camera operator. And you can see me glance out of the corner of my eye because I was worried I was going to run into the little chair at reception when I’m going back. If you look closely, I had to look. I was really afraid I was going to run into it.
Angela [00:24:22] But I think all of those moments were because exactly what Danny said. This is like a paper company.
Jenna [00:24:29] I bet Danny would have loved it if I ran into the chair. He would have been like, That’s fine. But yes, like you said, it was really, really choreographed. Except at the end, that stuff of us, we’re just improvising and dancing and throwing streamers and stuff. And so that was a relief once we got to that point. We also, speaking of that ending part, had a fan catch from Cecily G in New Mexico. At 2 minutes and 19 seconds, I have a cheesy John Krasinski jumping up and down catch. She said he’s doing.
Angela [00:25:00] He’s busting ouut some of his dance moves.
Jenna [00:25:02] Yeah. The same kind of stuff he did in Cafe Disco. I looked for it and it’s great.
Angela [00:25:07] I’ll have to go look for it. I was really curious about Creed playing the guitar.
Jenna [00:25:13] Yeah.
Angela [00:25:14] Because, you know, Creed comes over to my house and plays the guitar all the time. The man’s amazing. So I reached out to him and I said, Creed, are you really playing that part of the song? Are you really playing the guitar? What’s happening here? He said, Ange, I’m not actually playing that. I’m approximating what the notes would look like. And it looks real because I can actually play the guitar, but I’m not synched up to where the music would be.
Jenna [00:25:37] Oh, interesting.
Angela [00:25:38] Yeah. So fakey playing by a real person who can play on a real guitar.
Jenna [00:25:45] It really looked to me like he was playing the notes exactly.
Angela [00:25:48] Yeah.
Jenna [00:25:48] I’m impressed. Well, our final question is this: Was Toby really behind the camera or was his voice added in post? His voice was added in post.
Angela [00:26:00] Yeah.
Jenna [00:26:01] The camera was operated by our cinematographer, Matt Sohn. I don’t even think Paul was standing behind the camera that day. I don’t have a memory of it. Paul. I’m sorry. Were you there? You’re so quiet.
Angela [00:26:14] I do love, though, that they made it Toby’s voice. Because by doing that, then the whole entire office participated.
Jenna [00:26:20] Yes. Yes. Kelly Cantley shared that she walked around the room with Matt while they were filming. Also our boom operator, Brian Whittle. And I totally remember that.
Angela [00:26:30] I remember that. Kelly was like it’s like she had the outline of the whole thing and she had a stopwatch. Like, she was like, Let’s go.
Jenna [00:26:38] Yeah. They were like this little trio clump just kind of moving through.
Angela [00:26:43] Keeping us on track.
Jenna [00:26:44] But we also had our second AD, Stephanie, hiding behind the reception desk. She was giving cues. Our PA Chuck was hiding behind that door over by accounting that nobody goes in. And I remember he would peek out and give the cue when the guys were coming back in through the kitchen so we could be ready. It was just it was this whole machine.
Angela [00:27:05] All hands on deck.
Jenna [00:27:06] Some of the dancers were hidden to kind of remind us what we were supposed to do.
Angela [00:27:10] The magician was hidden.
Jenna [00:27:12] Gosh, I wish we had, like, actual documentary footage of all the people it took to pull this off.
Angela [00:27:18] Yeah. You guys, thanks so much for sending in your questions. That was really fun to break down. It was so much fun to do. I rewatched that so many times this week, Jenna.
Jenna [00:27:28] It made me happy every time.
Angela [00:27:29] Me too.
Jenna [00:27:30] What a fun thing we got to do.
Angela [00:27:31] I know. We were so lucky.
Jenna [00:27:34] Well, why don’t we take a break?
Angela [00:27:35] And when we come back, I have to share the journey I went on to find a DVD player that could play a Blu ray disc in Archer City, Texas.
Jenna [00:27:44] I was on that journey with you, Angela, via text message.
Angela [00:27:47] You were.
Jenna [00:27:48] And it is quite a journey.
Angela [00:27:51] It is. And then, of course, let’s talk Nepotism because, oh, man, does a lot happen in this episode?
Jenna [00:27:56] Oh yes. Mm hmm. Some corporate punishment.
Angela [00:27:59] Oh.
Jenna [00:28:01] All right, we are back. And, Angela, you have to share the story about watching this DVD in Texas. And for some context, I just want to say this to preface. We have been recording this podcast now for three years. Three years, lady.
Angela [00:28:18] I can’t believe it’s been three years.
Jenna [00:28:20] And I am still so impressed at the lengths that you will go to prep an episode, even when you do not have the tools readily available. I mean. I’m just really proud of us.
Angela [00:28:31] I feel the same way about you. I have talked to you while you have been hiding in a bathroom with your laptop while at like a family reunion. Trying to get some time. Some work done. So you guys, we love doing this podcast and we’ll we’ll do it from wherever we can.
Jenna [00:28:47] That’s right.
Angela [00:28:49] So here’s my story of how I watched the DVD commentary for Nepotism. I knew I would be in my hometown of Archer City, Texas. Very small town in North Texas. Population according to the last census, 1,601.
Jenna [00:29:03] Everybody knows everybody in Archer City.
Angela [00:29:05] Everybody knows everyone and they’re all willing to chip in. So before I went, I asked my sister, Janet. I said, Hey, do you have the DVD boxset? She’s like, Oh, I have one somewhere. So I was like, Okay. She goes, No, I know it’s here. I said, okay. So my sister finds her old boxset. Jenna, it was the Blu ray, the Blu ray old boxset. They don’t even make them anymore.
Jenna [00:29:26] Yes, I started getting texts from Angela about eight in the morning. And I get this text. Oh my God, my sister has the box set, but it’s Blu ray and we can’t figure out how to get it to work in my mom’s DVD player. Then you wrote, I don’t think it’s been used in a decade.
Angela [00:29:43] Oh, no, it hadn’t.
Jenna [00:29:44] They were not compatible.
Angela [00:29:45] They were not compatible. And not only that, we started using old remotes. Completely messed up my mom’s TV.
Jenna [00:29:49] Oh, no. And you are like, now you’re like a little- not panicking, but you’re like, What am I going to do? This was my prep day.
Angela [00:29:56] Yeah. So then my sister Billie’s like, Come on over, try mine.
Jenna [00:30:00] I got that text. 8:30. My sister Billie has the DVD player. I’m going to head to her house.
Angela [00:30:06] Yeah.
Jenna [00:30:06] And then it was like radio silence. I did not hear from you until 11:30 when you said, Nope, that didn’t work. Headed to the elementary school. And I’m like, What? What is happening? Third location.
Angela [00:30:20] Third location. I get to the elementary school. My sister is a schoolteacher. She was up there preparing her classroom for the upcoming school year. She was like, Maybe there’ll be one here. The principal of elementary school, Amy, opened the door for me. She was like, Angela, I think we’ve downloaded a program that will work on my desktop to play the Blu ray.
Jenna [00:30:37] She downloaded a program.
Angela [00:30:38] I know. So I sit in that elementary school principal’s office and it didn’t work. So now they’re like, okay, let’s try one of the classrooms. I go into my sister’s classroom. Now P.E teachers Chrissa and Julie and another pre-K teacher, Miriam, is in there. We’re all trying to make my sister’s laptop work. It won’t play it. And then finally to the rescue, Amanda, the librarian, she says, I think we have a Blu ray disc player in the elementary school library. But here’s the thing. It’s closed because it’s summer and it was 114 degrees that day. That library was super hot and stuffy, but they opened it up. And guess what? It did work. It played the Blu ray.
Jenna [00:31:19] And then I get this video of you, Angela, that you sent me at 12:45. This is like 4 hours later. Of you sitting and watching the DVD commentary. And they even brought you a fan. You’re sitting in front of a fan.
Angela [00:31:32] I’m sitting on the floor in the little reading nook of the elementary school library, and that is where I prepped this episode. Thank you so much to the ladies at the Archer City Elementary School for helping me watch Nepotism.
Jenna [00:31:45] Amazing. I was very impressed with your tenacity that day, Angela.
Angela [00:31:49] Thank you.
Jenna [00:31:50] It was like a whole town helped you watch the DVD. So we dedicate this episode of Office Ladies to Archer City, Texas. Thank you. I noticed something at the very top of this episode, lady.
Angela [00:32:01] New opening credits!
Jenna [00:32:03] We added a bunch of new shots. They did this because it was our season premiere episode. We had these big, long, extended credits. We’re going to have shorter credits moving forward, but we do keep these new shots of Michael, Dwight, Pam, Jim, Ryan, and Andy. And we will always end with Michael moving the Dundee on his desk.
Angela [00:32:22] Here’s a little bit of opening credits trivia I heard on the commentary.
Jenna [00:32:26] Well, the commentary is already paying off.
Angela [00:32:29] While sitting in the elementary school library, they shared that we will have new opening credits every time Dunder Mifflin gets a new boss moving forward. How about that?
Jenna [00:32:42] Okay.
Angela [00:32:42] We’ll be on the lookout for that.
Jenna [00:32:44] Yes. Well, Michael is going to arrive to work and he has a talking head. He says, sadly, summer had to come to an end.
Angela [00:32:53] You guys, a lot happened. He got West Nile virus. Then he stepped on a piece of glass in a parking lot. That hurt. He peed on it and he was surprised it got infected. And maybe he saw Inception. I mean, what a summer.
Jenna [00:33:07] So under all of this, we see various shots of Michael. And one of them is a very simple swish pan over to a fall tree. A tree with beautiful autumn colors.
Angela [00:33:18] Yeah, that seems really out of place. It seems like a big old fakey tree.
Jenna [00:33:24] Guess what, lady?
Angela [00:33:25] What?
Jenna [00:33:25] It was a big ol fakey tree. But it was in the script. There was a script note that came along with Michael’s talking head that said this. Michael gets out of his car. Something catches his eye. He looks over at a tree with brilliant autumn colors. He sighs, forlorn, if not angry.
Angela [00:33:44] Oh, my goodness.
Jenna [00:33:46] At this Autumn tree.
Angela [00:33:46] What a narrative.
Jenna [00:33:48] Well, Randy Cordray said to get this autumn tree was quite an ordeal. Just this little script note. He said we shot this on August 2nd in 2010. There were no trees with fall colors to be found anywhere in the United States of America. Anywhere.
Angela [00:34:03] You are kidding me.
Jenna [00:34:03] They couldn’t fly one in from anywhere.
Angela [00:34:06] Nothing in Vermont?
Jenna [00:34:07] I don’t know. Did the trees start changing that early? Early August?
Angela [00:34:10] I am the last person to ask that question. I’m sure there’s listeners in Vermont right now going, Lady, lady.
Jenna [00:34:17] He said, There is a place that you can go in Hollywood. It’s called Green Set. And they have amazing trees, shrubs and landscape decor for any budget. And they have fakey fall trees. I went on their website. Once again, I was clearly meant to be some sort of production designer or set dec in another life. They have fakey box hedges and real box hedges. This place, in addition to fake hedges, also has animal statues. Like you can rent-.
Angela [00:34:52] What? Come on.
Jenna [00:34:53] Yeah, like if you want to put a big tiger in your yard. They also have glacier walls.
Angela [00:34:59] What?
Jenna [00:35:00] Like, if you’re doing- I don’t know, if you’re, like, doing a movie or something and you need to look like you’re standing in front of a glacier, or if you have a theme party about… Ice… climbing.
Angela [00:35:12] I’m so excited.
Sam [00:35:13] I mean, if you guys ever take Office Ladies on the road, please use that as stage backdrops.
Angela [00:35:18] Like a giant glacier wall?
Sam [00:35:19] Depending on what state you’re in.
Angela [00:35:20] Or the tiger.
Sam [00:35:21] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:35:22] Yes! Oh, my gosh. That’s amazing. And then everyone can see what we were talking about in this episode. Here’s your glacier wall. Now, I just want to say I’m still talking about this tree, because in addition to having to find this fakey tree, Randy said there was more. Just for this little swish shot.
Angela [00:35:38] What more?
Jenna [00:35:39] He said they had to shoot very early in the morning.
Angela [00:35:43] Okay.
Jenna [00:35:43] He said they had to rent a special light to backlight this tree. It was called a 10K. It has 10,000 watts of light.
Angela [00:35:53] Just for this one sentence in a script?
Jenna [00:35:56] Yes. Because they wanted it to look like it was early morning sun coming through the colorful leaves to highlight these leaves and set them apart from everything around them.
Angela [00:36:06] This is that moment as a writer where I’m like, Do you think Danny was like, Oh, we could have lost the autumn tree.
Jenna [00:36:12] Yeah.
Angela [00:36:12] You know what I mean?
Jenna [00:36:13] Exactly.
Angela [00:36:13] I didn’t know it was all that much work.
Jenna [00:36:15] Well, that’s Randy’s job, is to, like, go through the script, and then I think sometimes he’ll have to go to production and he’ll be like, Okay, here’s the thing. You can either have your lip dub song or the autumn tree.
Angela [00:36:27] Pick.
Jenna [00:36:28] I mean, I don’t have the budget for all of it.
Angela [00:36:30] Or sometimes he finds a way to make it all work. Which is amazing.
Jenna [00:36:33] Which is usually the case. So what happens next, Ange? Andy is going to be chatting up Erin and then Gabe walks in.
Angela [00:36:43] Yes. We find out that Erin and Gabe have started dating over the summer. Gabe says it has been, in a word, exquisite. But then Erin has a talking head that sounds like she only said yes because she thought she had to because Gabe is her boss. Which makes me real sad.
Jenna [00:36:58] Yes, but now she seems to enjoy her relationship with him. It seems.
Angela [00:37:02] It seems.
Jenna [00:37:04] Andy has the talking head where he says he’s alright with it.
Angela [00:37:09] He’s on a nice beach at Cape Cod, gazing out across the white caps. That’s his anger management.
Jenna [00:37:14] That’s right.
Angela [00:37:15] But oh look, it’s humpback whale.
Jenna [00:37:17] Who’s eating Gabe.
Angela [00:37:18] Mm hmm. Well, I also watched in the elementary school library, the deleted scenes, and there were a ton of deleted scenes where everyone shares what they did over the summer.
Jenna [00:37:31] Oh?
Angela [00:37:31] It was a much bigger runner. One is hilarious. I’m going to save and share it later.
Jenna [00:37:36] Okay.
Angela [00:37:37] Hint. Hint. It’s about Kevin.
Jenna [00:37:39] Ooh.
Angela [00:37:40] Well, Pam is adjusting the thermostat, and Dwight comes up and locks it up.
Jenna [00:37:44] Mm hmm. Yeah. He says if she’s so hot, she can just sit on an ice pack.
Angela [00:37:49] Thanks, Dwight. Can we talk about the hydration backpack that Dwight has on?
Jenna [00:37:55] He requires hands free hydration, Angela.
Angela [00:37:57] I know. I looked it up. It’s called a CamelBak hydration pack. They have many options of these online. And I’m quoting the Internet here “With minimal storage space, this pack is best for quick hikes or trail runs that won’t require a ton of gear. And the two liter reservoir capacity ensures you’ll have enough water for your trip.” Danny said something on the commentary that really made me laugh. He said, I wish that Dwight had worn that CamelBak backpack for the rest of the season. And I was like, Oh, man, me too.
Jenna [00:38:28] I see people with those on all the time when we’re skiing. And honestly, I think next season I’m going to get one. Because you got to stay hydrated on the slopes, lady, and there’s nowhere to put a bottle of water.
Angela [00:38:41] Please tell me if you wear one of those that you’ll take a picture and send it to me, because I need.
Jenna [00:38:46] Of course.
Angela [00:38:46] I need that image in my life. Dwight has my favorite talking head of this episode. He says, Dwight Schrute; star salesman, beet farmer, bed and breakfast proprietor, aspiring freelance bodyguard. Add to that list owner of this building, then burn the list. And then he takes a big swig out of the little hose. Like he looks like a four year old with a sippy cup.
Jenna [00:39:08] He really does. I love Kelly’s talking head.
Angela [00:39:11] Oh, and talk about a new look!
Jenna [00:39:13] Oh, yeah.
Angela [00:39:15] Corporate, sassy Kelly.
Jenna [00:39:17] Well, the reason for that, lady, is because she did the minority executive program at Yale. She says, You don’t even know how smart I am now. You could ask her to name the biggest company in the world, and she would be like, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Giving you the exact right answer.
Angela [00:39:35] Brilliant.
Jenna [00:39:35] So good.
Angela [00:39:36] Brilliant. Our writers are brilliant.
Jenna [00:39:38] We had a fan catch from Leah J in Charleston, Indiana, who said, At 5 minutes, 36 seconds, the whiteboard behind Kelly says, Meeting with Chris, Nick and Ed. Is that referring to Nick, the I.T. guy? And who are Chris and Ed?
Angela [00:39:56] Oh, hold up. That’s our camera crew.
Jenna [00:39:59] Yes. Chris and Ed were our assistant camera operators and our sound guy was Nick Carbone.
Angela [00:40:05] Yep. Well, now we are going to meet Luke. Luke’s going to show up with the coffee. He’s gotten everyone’s order wrong.
Jenna [00:40:12] Well, I was very surprised, and I paused to make sure that we used real Starbucks cups. Those were Starbucks.
Angela [00:40:21] Yeah. How did we get away with that?
Jenna [00:40:22] I asked Randy about it, and he said that at first this was flagged by standards and practices, because if you want to use a real product, you have to clear it with the NBC ad sales department. Because if they had an advertiser who might be a competitor, you know, then that person who had bought ad time would definitely not want to see free advertising on a show.
Angela [00:40:51] Right. Right. Like if you’re the guys at Peet’s Coffee.
Jenna [00:40:54] Yeah. Or Coffee Bean. You’re like, hey, hold on a second.
Angela [00:40:58] Get that Starbucks out of there.
Jenna [00:40:59] Well, I guess coffee chains were not actually huge ad buyers at the time.
Angela [00:41:04] What, really?
Jenna [00:41:05] Yes!
Angela [00:41:06] Wow.
Jenna [00:41:06] That’s what Randy said.
Angela [00:41:08] That’s how old we are. That’s how old the show is.
Jenna [00:41:09] Yes.
Angela [00:41:10] We had flip phones. There was no Instagram. And coffee companies weren’t that big of a deal.
Jenna [00:41:16] Yeah. And so I guess there were no conflicts and we were able to get approval to use real Starbucks cups.
Angela [00:41:24] Wow.
Jenna [00:41:24] Mm hmm.
Angela [00:41:25] You know about the whole Starbucks cup on the set of Game of Thrones that made it into the Game of Thrones episode?
Jenna [00:41:30] I do.
Angela [00:41:31] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:41:32] I can’t believe they haven’t gone back and, like, wiped that out. It’s now like such a lore of the show that it’s like an Easter egg. That you’re just going to keep it in for-.
Angela [00:41:43] Winter is coming and so is your Starbucks. There’s now a series of talking heads that are really funny, but basically the theme is everyone hates Luke and that Luke sucks.
Jenna [00:41:53] Yeah, in the kitchen, Andy is going to confront Michael and just say Luke is the worst. He needs to be fired, Michael. But Michael’s just kind of hedging. He’s like, he’s not that bad. That other intern we had was worse. Lady, I need to talk about this. Did you notice Steve’s holding an apple in this scene. He’s got a coffee in one hand and an apple in the other. I went to the script. I’m like, did this apple have a story? No, it’s just I guess he went to the kitchen to get an apple. I thought it was interesting.
Angela [00:42:27] Interesting.
Jenna [00:42:27] Why is Michael holding an apple?
Angela [00:42:29] Interesting choice.
Jenna [00:42:30] Well, I mean, I don’t know. Apple and coffee. Hmm.
Angela [00:42:34] Sounds gross to me. We are now going to start a whole storyline that is really centered around Pam at the core. Dwight has this impressive ring of keys. I mean, it’s ridiculous. It’s huge. He has all these keys, and Jim is doing basically classic Jim prankage.
Jenna [00:42:53] Yes. Jim has a bunch of extra keys in his desk. When he gets Dwight to go check for raccoons in the wall, he tries to add a few extra keys to the key ring. His goal is very similar to when he was putting the nickels in Dwight’s phone receiver.
Angela [00:43:07] Amazing.
Jenna [00:43:08] My favorite prank, personally.
Angela [00:43:09] Me too.
Jenna [00:43:10] He’s going to put so many extra keys, like one a day, two a day, onto this key ring, that eventually his pants will fall down. That was his goal.
Angela [00:43:18] Well, Jim has a talking head that said, What happened to me this summer? Dwight bought the building, so actually, this has been the busiest summer of my life.
Jenna [00:43:25] Yeah, he had to make plans.
Angela [00:43:27] Lots of prank plans. Pam finds it hilarious and starts laughing and Dwight busts Jim.
Jenna [00:43:33] Yeah, we had a fan question from Sarah C in Lubbock, Texas, Does Rainn throw real keys at John’s head or are they fakey keys?
Angela [00:43:43] One of them hit him.
Jenna [00:43:45] And you hear like a thunk.
Angela [00:43:46] Well, I know. I was wondering the same thing.
Jenna [00:43:49] I swear they were real keys.
Angela [00:43:51] Same.
Jenna [00:43:52] Because I have this memory Rainn was kind of throwing them at John’s chest in the scene. But then, I swear it was this take, one of them just accidentally kind of like flew at John’s head. And they stopped. And John was like, Dude. And Rainn was like, I’m so sorry. He’s like, it’s okay. But like, those are real. And yes, so I totally have that memory of shooting that scene.
Angela [00:44:19] I think they’re real too. I have the same memory. And also, if you watch John’s reaction.
Jenna [00:44:27] That’s what I mean.
Angela [00:44:28] Yeah, well, you know, this is interesting because Pam feels really bad and Jim is bummed out that his prank didn’t go. And B.J. talked on the commentary about how they had to get creative with conflict scenes for Jim and Pam, now that they’re a happily married couple. I thought it was really interesting. Let’s listen.
B.J. Novak [00:44:45] So this was something we thought of because we like when Jim and Pam of stories, but we don’t want to invent fights. They’re a couple that gets along really well. And we like stories between them, but we don’t always want them having conflict cause that’s not real. So what would be a light conflict that is real, but not sad?
Danny Chun [00:45:03] Yeah.
Angela [00:45:04] Is that interesting that they had to find ways for Jim and Pam to have storylines, and this sort of Pam trying to do right by Jim with this prank was one of those light conflict storylines.
Jenna [00:45:17] Well, we also had a fan catch from Ashley W in Oklahoma for thi scene. You’re going to like it, Angela.
Angela [00:45:23] Okay.
Jenna [00:45:24] Here’s what Ashley said. Pam’s desk plant has a bow on it. It’s like a gift bow. Are these plants gifts from someone? Does she have a plant subscription box? Maybe that’s why they were constantly changing.
Angela [00:45:39] Wait, is there such a thing as a plant subscription box? I’ve never heard of that. Could I get plants sent to me every month?
Jenna [00:45:48] You’ve never heard of this?
Angela [00:45:49] No.
Jenna [00:45:50] It’s like, you know, like cheese of the month. You can get flowers of the month. Plant of the month. Wine of the month.
Angela [00:45:56] Okay. Cheese. Wine. I guess flowers makes sense, but I didn’t know you could get a whole living plant, like in a pot.
Jenna [00:46:03] I mean, I believe it.
Angela [00:46:06] Umm I want one.
Jenna [00:46:07] Okay. Plant subscription box coming your way, Lady.
Angela [00:46:11] Josh is going to be like, Ange, we have plants all over the house.
Jenna [00:46:17] I had a flowers the month. Lee got it for me for Christmas one year, and every month I got fresh flowers. It was so amazing.
Angela [00:46:25] What a great gift.
Jenna [00:46:25] I know. Well, I’ll tell you what, Ashley. I don’t know if there was a subscription box, but I’ll tell you my back story for that plant. Do you remember when Jim let Pam’s plant die on her desk when she went on maternity leave?
Angela [00:46:39] So you think Jim bought Pam a new plant?
Jenna [00:46:42] I do.
Angela [00:46:43] Oh, I like that.
Jenna [00:46:43] That’s why there was a little bow on it. And I think she didn’t take the bow off because it reminded her of Jim’s thoughtfulness.
Angela [00:46:51] I like that. Well, there’s someone in the office who you don’t want to tick off, and that is Phyllis.
Jenna [00:46:56] Oh, that’s right.
Angela [00:46:57] And Luke has crossed Phyllis. She lost an account because she’s pretty sure Luke did not send the samples he was supposed to.
Jenna [00:47:05] That’s right. Lehigh Motors has not gotten their samples.
Angela [00:47:11] He blows off Phyllis. And then, you know, he’s just like playing video games on Meredith’s computer. Everyone’s getting so frustrated with Luke. Michael sends him to get ice cream.
Jenna [00:47:20] At 8 minutes and 49 seconds, Angela, you are not at your desk in the background of this scene. I noticed.
Angela [00:47:27] I bet I had gone to the bathroom.
Jenna [00:47:28] Where have you sneaked away to, lady?
Angela [00:47:29] I probably talked our AD into letting me go to the bathroom. Like they’re not going to see me.
Jenna [00:47:34] I know. All right. We are 10 minutes into this episode and we are going to move to a scene in the conference room, I noticed with the conference table. Not the usual row of chairs.
Angela [00:47:47] Table is back. People are going to figure out pretty quickly that Michael is related to Luke. Oscar accuses Michael of nepotism.
Jenna [00:47:56] This whole conference room scene is delicious and amazing. During this rewatch, lady, I love our conference room scenes.
Angela [00:48:05] Same.
Jenna [00:48:05] I loved doing our conference room scenes. I used to feel bad for Steve because I knew how much work they were for him. We’d be in there all day and he would be the leader.
Angela [00:48:15] He would be driving the scene, he would have the majority of the dialogue, and all we had to do was chime in with a line or two here. And basically everyone that worked at Dunder Mifflin was always versus Michael.
Jenna [00:48:25] Yes, but they are delightful. I get so excited every time we go to the conference room. At 10 minutes and 19 seconds, in this conference room scene, Rainn is drinking water from his pouch. I swear to God, I remember that he drank real water from that pouch all day long. I remember he had to pee all day long.
Angela [00:48:46] No, it’s true.
Jenna [00:48:47] He was not fakey drinking.
Angela [00:48:48] He was not fakey drinking. Rainn is very method, you know, as an actor. So if he was like, if Dwight’s supposed to be drinking water, I’m going to be drinking lots of water.
Jenna [00:48:56] Yeah.
Angela [00:48:57] Creed has a talking head that I absolutely love. Creed says, I couldn’t care less about nepotism, but I’m loving the debate. Great minds battling it out. And I’ve got a front row seat.
Jenna [00:49:10] So good.
Angela [00:49:10] So good.
Jenna [00:49:13] I mean, I’m Creed, really? I’m like, I’m loving it as well. Well, lady, maybe we should take a break.
Angela [00:49:19] Yeah. And when we come back, Luke is going to have soy ice cream and bagel chips for everybody.
Jenna [00:49:26] And there was a mini Michael Pam pageant that was cut from this conference room scene that I’m excited to share.
Angela [00:49:33] Ooh. Well we are back from break. Michael is continuing to defend Luke. He’s even comparing himself and Luke to like God and Jesus.
Jenna [00:49:45] That’s right. And Jim has this line where he says, Oh, so you and Luke are God and Jesus? And Michael says, No, not that. I’m just saying, why does God get to do something I don’t? Why does God get to do nepotism, basically?
Angela [00:49:59] Yeah.
Jenna [00:49:59] And then Oscar says, This is all hypothetical. We’re talking about Luke, who is actually terrible. And I don’t know if you notice, lady, but 11 minutes, 48 seconds, when Oscar says that line to Michael, I’m sort of smiling and shrugging like I have a sort of out of context-.
Angela [00:50:17] Body energy?
Jenna [00:50:18] Yeah, like reaction. And at first I thought, oh, my gosh, am I breaking? And then I remembered. No. Pam and Michael had a bit. Because I suddenly had that like sense memory of shooting it. And we were laughing. Like all these memories came back. So I checked the shooting draft and I found it. Here is what would have happened. So Michael was going to say, Why does God get to do something I don’t? And then Pam says, Michael, you’ve built yourself up fair and square. How can you support favoritism like this? To which Michael said, Pam, let’s say you’re my daughter, and I’m the CEO of the world’s biggest toy company, Scott’s Games and Fun. We make funny putty, magic marbles, connectibles. And Dwight said, What are connectibles? And Michael said, They’re my knock off Legos. Almost as good. Half the price. And I remember that was- we would lose it on this connectibles. Like what are connectibles.
Angela [00:51:22] Yeah.
Jenna [00:51:22] So anyway then Michael would say, Okay, one day I fall in the slimeinator and die. And we would all laugh. Like, we could not get through this.
Angela [00:51:32] I’m remembering this.
Jenna [00:51:33] We had this runner of Michael’s toy company.
Angela [00:51:36] Oh my god. I’m remembering this because I remember also how well thought out it was. He’s throwing it out as just an off the cuff example, but it is a well thought out toy company.
Jenna [00:51:45] Yes! He says, Pam, I left you the company. Would you turn it down? So in this example, Pam is Michael’s daughter.
Angela [00:51:53] And Michael’s created this insanely successful toy company.
Jenna [00:51:58] But he dies in the slimeinator and has left her the company.
Angela [00:52:02] He’s Willy Wonka.
Jenna [00:52:03] He wants to know, would I turn it down? And Pam said, If I was unqualified, yes. To which Michael says very seriously, But you’re not. You’ve got an amazing mind for toys. And then the script said, Pam looks flattered. And then Oscar said, This is all hypothetical. That’s why the look on my face.
Angela [00:52:28] Yes. But also why Oscar is saying this is all hypothetical.
Jenna [00:52:31] Yes, this toy company. But it’s why when I’m sitting next to him on that line, I’m like, oh, well, thank you very- you can see that I’m saying non-verbally, Thank you very much, Michael.
Angela [00:52:42] Like Pam is like, oh, well, if you say so.
Jenna [00:52:45] That’s right.
Angela [00:52:46] Oh, my gosh. I remember all of that now.
Jenna [00:52:48] Yes, right?
Angela [00:52:49] It’s like you opened a folder in my brain.
Jenna [00:52:52] Mm hmm.
Angela [00:52:53] Yes. Michael’s toy company.
Jenna [00:52:55] And by the way, I went to the bloopers to see if it was in there, because I know it wasn’t in deleted scenes. It’s not in there. But we were creacking up.
Angela [00:53:03] They’re somewhere.
Jenna [00:53:04] Somewhere.
Angela [00:53:05] Well, that was a delightful trip down memory lane. I do want to address something, though, with Pam. She’s about to have a talking head where she says she feels awful for blowing Jim’s prank. Can we talk about how fancy fancy Pam is looking? What is with this hair? I notice black eyeliner. I mean, fancy Pam.
Jenna [00:53:25] You are not the only one, Angela. We got mail about it. We got a fan question from Kaylee E in Indianapolis and Kristen H from Little Rock, Arkansas. Pam’s look takes a big shift this season. Straighter hair, a tucked in shirt, more blazers than cardigans. Surely there were many meetings about this.
Angela [00:53:45] Surley there were, Shirley. Shirley, surely.
Jenna [00:53:47] Surely there were.
Angela [00:53:48] Surely.
Jenna [00:53:49] Yes. There were many meetings about this. Starting in wardrobe. I will tell you, we decided that we wanted Pam to keep her blazers, but we wanted to bring back more of what they would call Pam’s color palette. So rather than having a dark shirt with a dark blazer, we wanted to bring the pastels back. Because that really felt like Pam. The pinks and the lighter colors.
Angela [00:54:12] Light purples. Yeah.
Jenna [00:54:14] So you’re going to see that. And then in terms of the hair, I went to Kim Ferry and I said, Kim, I miss Pam’s hair. I miss the Pam mullet.
Angela [00:54:23] The half up, half down?
Jenna [00:54:24] Yeah. And you know, we were changing Pam’s hair because Pam’s life was going through a lot of changes. She broke up with Roy, she started dating Jim. She got this new job at Michael Scott Paper Company. She became a mom.
Angela [00:54:38] And you also just change your look over the years. You do.
Jenna [00:54:41] You do.
Angela [00:54:42] Unless you were my grandmother who had the same hairstyle her whole life.
Jenna [00:54:45] Same with my grandmother.
Angela [00:54:47] But Pam.
Jenna [00:54:48] Pam.
Angela [00:54:49] Is evolving.
Jenna [00:54:50] Well, I don’t know about you, but in my life, I have always kind of had, like, a base hairstyle. And I’ll stray from it, but then I’ll come back to it. And I’ll stray and I’ll come back to it. And I felt like it was time for Pam to come home to her base hairstyle. But we also thought she’s learned a lot about hair since that first frizzy half up, half down.
Angela [00:55:13] So now she’s sleek half up, half down.
Jenna [00:55:16] That’s right. Well, I thought you looked beautiful. You and Pam looked fantastic.
Jenna [00:55:21] Well, I also got married over the summer, and I had grown my hair out a little bit. I don’t know. I could tell how happy I am in my life when this episode came on. And I feel like you can tell that newlywed energy in this episode and moving forward.
Angela [00:55:40] Well, Michael is going to get a text and looks out the window. Angela is waving at him- she looks hot to trot- to come down to the parking lot. Her first line to him just made me laugh, lady. She says, I came down here to feed the feral cats like I usually do, and I found something unsavory in the back of your nephew’s car. What was it?
Jenna [00:56:02] All of the things that he was supposed to be, like, mailing and shipping.
Angela [00:56:08] Mm hmm.
Jenna [00:56:09] Including Phyllis’ samples.
Angela [00:56:12] Mm hmm. Oscar’s expense reports.
Jenna [00:56:15] And some pants that Michael wanted to return to Talbots. By the way, we got a fan catch from Mandy M in Texas.
Angela [00:56:22] Okay.
Jenna [00:56:23] Who said this: I have been holding on to this for so long. Mini deep dive alert.
Angela [00:56:29] Oh.
Jenna [00:56:30] I’m loving Mandy.
Angela [00:56:31] Okay, Mandy, let’s have it.
Jenna [00:56:34] Erin asked Michael about returning pants to Talbots. Talbots stopped carrying men’s clothing in 2008, according to the New York Times. This episode aired in September 2010, two years after Talbots stopped carrying men’s clothing. This must be another instance of Michael wearing women’s clothing, which is an amazing callback to The Negotiation.
Angela [00:56:57] Oh, it’s the first thing I thought of. I thought, he’s bought another woman’s suit.
Jenna [00:57:02] Woman suit, yes. Without any pockets.
Angela [00:57:06] And shoulder pads.
Jenna [00:57:07] Exactly.
Angela [00:57:09] Michael is going to get on a video call with Jo. And for the majority of this call, all you see is Gabe’s crotch until Jo is like, Will you bend down so I don’t have to look at your crotch?
Jenna [00:57:22] Oh, I wrote out what she said because her line read on that was so funny to me. She says, Lower yourself, Gabe. I don’t want to be having a conversation with your crotch. I loved it so much. Angela this reminded me of the day that we were working on our book over FaceTime. You remember?
Angela [00:57:40] Yeah. Yeah. We would have this, like, FaceTime writing sessions.
Jenna [00:57:43] But do you remember that time, we were like 2 hours into this FaceTime, and I look over and I realize that you’ve been, like, looking up my nose the entire 2 hours. You did not say anything.
Angela [00:57:56] I didn’t say anything. We were busy both typing and writing, but I would check in with you. And for 2 hours, the way you had your laptop sort of positioned, I just saw your neck and up your nose.
Jenna [00:58:07] I mean.
Angela [00:58:08] For 2 hours.
Jenna [00:58:09] I was like, Lady, this could have been a phone call. This could- why are we on a video chat if you’re looking at, like, my chin/ nose? It was crazy.
Angela [00:58:19] I know. I didn’t say anything, but it did remind me of whenever I FaceTime my mom and I see, like, her forehead and ceiling fan.
Jenna [00:58:25] Yes.
Angela [00:58:26] I’m like, Mom, tilt it down.
Jenna [00:58:28] During this Skype when- this exchange also made me laugh- when Jo says, Why won’t you fire Luke? And Michael says, I love him.
Angela [00:58:39] She goes, Oh, no. How far is it gone?
Jenna [00:58:42] Yeah. How far is it gone? Her line read on that. I mean, I, I rewound it. I watched it like four times. It’s so brilliant.
Angela [00:58:49] I know. The woman is brilliant. And Michael’s like, he’s my nephew. And Jo’s like, I have a nephew, too, but he doesn’t work for me. He’d screw it up.
Jenna [00:58:58] She says he can come swim in her pool, but he can’t come in her house. And Michael says, Well, this is my pool. And he wants his nephew to work in his pool. And then Jo says, Well, that’s fine, but it’s on you, Michael. If he screws up, I’m going to hold you accountable, basically.
Angela [00:59:17] So Michael is going to have a talking head about how he’s trying to work side by side with Luke. After this talking head Jenna, there was a deleted scene that didn’t make it in. It’s on the DVD set. Michael calls his half sister, Luke’s mom, to ask her advice on how to deal with Luke. I also went to the shooting draft because I wanted to know more about it. This is how it starts in the shooting draft. Michael is on the phone with his sister, Marni. So we know her name. Marni. He looks at his computer, which we don’t see. And he says to Marni, I’m so psyched you approved my friend request, Marni. Oh, look, we have Nana in common. And Marni says, She posts constantly. The scene continues. I have it from the DVD. I want you to hear it.
Michael Scott [01:00:09] Ohhh.
Marni [01:00:10] Hey, how’s Luke doing?
Michael Scott [01:00:11] Oh. Best nephew ever.
Marni [01:00:13] Isn’t he?
Michael Scott [01:00:13] He really. He changes the whole demeanor of the office. It’s really such a joy having him here. He’s really a joy.
Marni [01:00:23] Oh, good.
Michael Scott [01:00:25] Um, I just wanted to ask you a parenting question.
Marni [01:00:27] A parenting question?
Michael Scott [01:00:29] How do you deal with his-.
Marni [01:00:32] What? How do I deal with what, Michael? What?
Michael Scott [01:00:34] No, no, it’s- he’s great. He’s fantastic. It’s just… You know what he has? He does this little attitude thing.
Marni [01:00:43] What attitude?
Michael Scott [01:00:44] No, not at-.
Marni [01:00:45] What do you mean he’s got an attitude?
Michael Scott [01:00:46] Not attitude in a negative way. I’m talking like Pink. You know how Pink has an attitude. Or when a fashion photographer says, give me more attitude. That’s what I’m talking about. He’s great. He has a big he just has a lot of attitude. It’s great.
Marni [01:01:02] Okay. All right. Well, I’m glad it’s working out.
Michael Scott [01:01:04] It’s great. He is such a joy and a pleasure and a real gem.
Marni [01:01:10] Okay. Great. Well, you’re the best, Michael.
Michael Scott [01:01:14] Well, thank you. That is awfully nice of you to say. And I just posted something on your wall.
Marni [01:01:24] Okay. Thanks for saying I’m the best. Love your brother, Michael. There it is. Give Luke a hug for me.
Michael Scott [01:01:34] I’ll give him a hug and a kiss.
Marni [01:01:36] Just a hug is good.
Michael Scott [01:01:37] All right.
Angela [01:01:38] How amazing is that?
Jenna [01:01:40] It’s my favorite thing I’ve ever heard.
Angela [01:01:42] I mean, you hear- you hear how well it starts and then how badly it ends.
Jenna [01:01:47] It’s so good, lady.
Angela [01:01:48] So many layers. All right. Coming up is something I’ve also wanted to share with you. It’s about Kevin and Pam by the elevators.
Jenna [01:01:58] Yes. Pam is going to do a very elaborate prank. She is rearranging the buttons on the elevator. And then she’s going to have Dwight, I guess, try to use this elevator.
Angela [01:02:11] And she’s going to film him. And it’s going to be hilarious because the elevator isn’t going to do what you tell it to do.
Jenna [01:02:16] Kevin is rearranging the buttons. He is the elevator technician. And we got a fan question from Leslie S in San Francisco, California, that says, I have always been confused by Pam’s choice to ask Kevin to help her change the elevator button controls. Does he have some background as an electrician? I feel like Pam could figure this out more competently than Kevin. I mean, she did assemble a copier by herself.
Angela [01:02:43] Exactly. And also, is Pam not worried when Kevin says, let me look at the circus board?
Jenna [01:02:48] Yeah, exactly.
Angela [01:02:52] Well, this was the much bigger storyline for Kevin that I hinted at earlier in the episode. It explains why Kevin is helping Pam with the elevator panel. He shares in a talking head that over the summer he decided to practice lying more. And he really got into it.
Jenna [01:03:11] Oh! I thought you were going to say over the summer, he became an electrician.
Angela [01:03:16] Oh, no, no, no. He just has decided to lie a lot. Here, listen.
Kevin [01:03:20] Hmm. Hmm. Hmm, hmm. Hmm.
Angela Martin [01:03:24] What?
Kevin [01:03:25] Oh. Oh. Well, last night, Jenny came over again, and she cooked me dinner, and then we had sex all night long.
Angela Martin [01:03:35] GROSS.
Oscar [01:03:36] That’s awesome, Kevin.
Kevin [01:03:39] It is. (TALKING HEAD) This summer, I decided to become a liar. I just make things up. It’s going great.
Jenna [01:03:49] That is amazing.
Angela [01:03:50] Yeah. So he starts off lying in accounting, and he has this talking head saying that he’s now a liar. It’s working out great. And then he tells Pam what he’s going to do to the elevator and then lie some more. Here, listen.
Pam [01:04:03] How did you learn how to do this?
Kevin [01:04:05] Before this job, I worked as an elevator repairman. I specialized in the buttons.
Dwight [01:04:11] Hey, did you just SMS text message me?
Kevin [01:04:13] I just came from the museum where I saw an exhibit on rare coins. (TALKING HEAD) I’ve never worked as an elevator repair, man. That’s another lie. It’s become a tangled web. I’m a bit worried I’m losing myself.
Jenna [01:04:30] That is amazing. Well, what we see in the episode is Dwight just coming in and saying, Pam, I received your SMS message. Old Tech Alert. What does she want? Lady, we could not get through this. There was something about the way Rainn was entering as Dwight, sucking on his water. And Brian and I, you know that thing where, like, Rainn wasn’t in on it because me and Brian had had this whole thing, like you just played, of him explaining the circuit board, what he was doing.
Angela [01:05:05] Yeah.
Jenna [01:05:06] And then Dwight walks in, and it just made us laugh. And Rainn was like, what? What?!
Angela [01:05:13] What’s so funny?
Jenna [01:05:13] Why can we not continue? Okay, so the blooper for this is on the blooper reel for this season, but we were doing that laughing thing where we’re not making any noise.
Angela [01:05:22] Right. There’s no point in playing it cuz it’s just two people shaking.
Jenna [01:05:25] Exactly. But you know what? I’ll post it so people can see it. But anyway, eventually we get through this moment, and Pam says to Dwight that she wants to show him something in the lobby. And she gets in the elevator with him. She starts filming him. Oh, she’s so excited.
Angela [01:05:40] She’s so tickled by this.
Jenna [01:05:43] Well, at first it works. You know, it starts going up instead of down. But then the elevator gets stuck and Dwight immediately pees in the corner.
Angela [01:05:51] Immediately. He isn’t like, Oh, maybe I can hold it for a little bit. It’s like, elevator doors don’t open. What if they had opened 2 minutes later mid pee?
Jenna [01:06:01] Oh my gosh. He says, I have 56 ounces of fluid in my bladder. This made me curious. How much.
Angela [01:06:10] Can a bladder hold? Did you Google that?
Jenna [01:06:12] Yes! I did. And I will tell you, according to Healthline, a healthy adult bladder can hold up to 16 ounces or two cups of urine. Dwight says he has 56 ounces of urine in his bladder. That’s like five times more than a normal bladder. I didn’t stop my search there. Just, you know, I became very curious. Because we have to pee all the time, lady.
Angela [01:06:42] I know. It’s healthy.
Jenna [01:06:44] Here was one of the questions in this article. Is it safe to hold your pee?
Angela [01:06:50] What it say?
Jenna [01:06:51] It said that if you have a healthy urinary system, holding your pee generally isn’t dangerous. But in certain circumstances, holding your urine for any length of time can be dangerous, like if you have one of the following conditions: enlarged prostate, neurogenic bladder, kidney disorders, or urinary retention. So then don’t hold it.
Angela [01:07:14] Okay.
Jenna [01:07:16] Do you know what happens to your body when you hold your pee?
Angela [01:07:19] Oh, God, no.
Jenna [01:07:21] It says when you feel the urge to empty your bladder, it isn’t just because your bladder is filling up with liquid. It’s actually a really complex process that involves a bunch of muscles and organs and nerves… And that this reaction gets set off in your body when your bladder is only about half full. So that’s why you can hold it for a bit.
Angela [01:07:43] Because your bladder’s like, warning. Warning.
Jenna [01:07:46] Exactly.
Angela [01:07:46] Halfway full.
Jenna [01:07:49] And these signals kind of differ from person to person. And according to your age, or if you’ve had a kid, these nerves and whatnot can maybe.
Angela [01:08:02] And the whosy was it’s and the whatnots might be different.
Jenna [01:08:03] That’s exactly right.
Jenna [01:08:07] Also, the signals will decrease at night, and that’s why you can.
Angela [01:08:12] Sleep! But you wake up having to pee.
Jenna [01:08:14] That’s right. Because it won’t signal you when your bladder’s only half full. But you know what you should do if you really need to hold your pee? Here are some tips if, I don’t know, lady, we need to hold it.
Angela [01:08:27] Well, there’s always some road trip where I have to hold it because there was no gas station.
Jenna [01:08:32] Here’s what it says. Number one, do a task that will actively engage your brain, such as a crossword puzzle.
Angela [01:08:42] Well, I can’t do that in the car. I’ll get nauseous.
Jenna [01:08:44] It says, listen to music.
Angela [01:08:46] I can do that.
Jenna [01:08:47] Also, if you are already sitting, stay sitting. Don’t stand up.
Angela [01:08:51] Don’t stand up. Oh, yeah. Cross your legs.
Jenna [01:08:54] You could read a book.
Angela [01:08:56] Can’t do that in the car.
Jenna [01:08:57] Listen to this one. This is a suggestion. Scroll through social media on your phone. That’ll help you not have to go to the bathroom.
Angela [01:09:05] All of these things are going to make me sick in the car.
Jenna [01:09:08] Another thing is try to stay warm because being cold will give you the urge to urinate.
Angela [01:09:14] Any wonder I always feel like I have to pee. I’m always cold.
Jenna [01:09:17] I know. Yeah. You know, lady, when I do my cold dip. So I sit in really warm water, and then I go to my cold dip and I-
Angela [01:09:25] Do you have to pee?
Jenna [01:09:26] Yeah. When you get in the cold dip, it’s like 60 degree water, and it gives you this feeling like you have to pee even if you just peed.
Angela [01:09:35] Whoa.
Jenna [01:09:36] Mm hmm.
Angela [01:09:37] I was going to ask you, have you ever been swimming in the ocean? Anyone? This is open for anyone. Have you ever been swimming in the ocean and you have to pee, and you tell your body, go pee. It’s okay. We’re in the ocean. We floated away from other people. Go pee. And your body’s like nuh uh. We’re not doing it.
Jenna [01:09:55] My body won’t pee in the ocean. I think it’s the waves.
Angela [01:09:58] I think it’s just a weird thing. Sensation. You’ve told your body, don’t pee in the pool, don’t pee in the pool.
Jenna [01:10:04] Don’t pee in the bath.
Angela [01:10:06] Don’t pee in the bath. And then you get in the ocean and you’re like, have at it, and your body’s like nooo.
Jenna [01:10:12] I think it’s the waves because I don’t have a problem peeing in a lake.[01:10:15] Oh? [01:10:15] When we go to Lake of the Ozarks, we’ll, like anchor the boat. You’re in a cove and you’re swimmin. You swim away from everyone else. Or, you know, when you’re younger, you pee right next to your sibling and you make them swim through the warm water.
Angela [01:10:30] Wait, can you guys pee in the ocean?
Sam [01:10:32] Oh, yeah.
Angela [01:10:33] You got no problem? So, Jenna, that rules out your-
Jenna [01:10:36] Sam and Cassi can pee in the ocean.
Sam [01:10:36] Yeah. We’re both excellent pee-ers over here.
Angela [01:10:38] That rules out your wave theory, your scientific wave theory.
Jenna [01:10:45] Listen. That was. I was certain that’s what it was. It was the waves of the ocean was why. Because I’ll get ready. I’m like, all ready to pee. And then a wave comes and it like, stops me.
Angela [01:10:55] Yeah. Well. Okay.
Jenna [01:10:56] I don’t know.
Angela [01:10:59] We don’t know.
Jenna [01:11:00] Can you pee in the ocean? New poll.
Angela [01:11:02] I can, it just takes a lot of effort.
Jenna [01:11:04] Do you remember that thing that they would tell you? Did you hear this when you were a kid? You go to the public swimming pool in your neighborhood or whatever, and they would say, don’t pee in the pool, because if you do, it’ll turn green.
Angela [01:11:18] Oh, I was a lifeguard at the public pool. We would say that.
Jenna [01:11:21] Yeah, but that’s not true, right? It doesn’t really change a color. I mean, what is- that makes no sense.
Angela [01:11:27] Maybe there’s a chemical you can put in the pool. Ours were just like empty threats.
Sam [01:11:31] Tell you what. I’ll look it up and I’ll have an answer by the end of the episode.
Jenna [01:11:33] Ooh, we’re going to- we’re like debunking things or maybe confirming.
Angela [01:11:38] Okay. So Michael is in the conference room. He’s actually doing like a real presentation, like real work. They talked on the commentary that this was like some of the most professional, like verbiage you hear Michael say in the whole entire series. But Luke is distracting everyone because he has one of those little laser pointer things. He points to that Oscar’s head. He points to Angela’s boob. Michael kicks him out, and then he points it into Andy’s eyeball.
Jenna [01:12:09] We got a fan question from Elizabeth P in Toronto, Canada, who said, Was Luke shining a real laser at people or was it added later? It was a fakey laser.
Angela [01:12:18] Yeah. You can’t do that.
Jenna [01:12:20] You cannot put a laser on someone’s eyeball.
Angela [01:12:23] That’s a CGI laser is my guess.
Jenna [01:12:25] It was. And Randy even sent us, like, the little video of them adding it in.
Angela [01:12:30] Michael is going to run out of the conference room to try to take the laser pointer away from Luke, since he’s being such a tool with it, and this awkward physical altercation ensues. Michael starts spanking Luke.
Jenna [01:12:43] Spanking him!
Angela [01:12:45] Yeah.
Jenna [01:12:45] On the desk. And everyone in the conference room is watching this.
Angela [01:12:49] Lady, after watching the deleted scenes when Michael is spanking Luke, all I can think about is his sister, Marni.
Jenna [01:12:57] Yes. How is Michael- she is un-friending him imeediately.
Angela [01:12:59] She will never. She will never speak to him again.
Jenna [01:13:02] Yes. Well, Luke is going to run out crying and Michael comes back into the conference room. We had a fan question from Cessia Z in London, Ontario, Canada. At 8 minutes, 40 seconds, there’s a quick pan of the camera, but if you pause it, you can clearly see Jim, Phyllis, and Darryl smiling or maybe breaking. And then as the camera pans, you can see Stanley smiling as well. Was this scripted or was everyone actually reacting to the scene and trying not to laugh? All right. I looked at this. Everyone’s breaking. I don’t know what happened, like what everybody is reacting to, but probably Steve did this, like, very funny entrance to the conference room and it was making people break, because you can also see Ed breaking. It’s like a group break.
Angela [01:13:52] The whole… The whole scene was just so huge and crazy. And we were all just like I think we were laughing, nervous laughing. We’re all just like, Oh, my God, what’s happening?
Jenna [01:14:06] Yes.
Angela [01:14:07] Well, on the commentary, B.J. and Paul talked about the moment they knew this whole Luke Michael storyline was going to have a payoff and work. And in particular, they talked about whose idea it was for Michael to spank Luke. Listen to this.
B.J. Novak [01:14:23] It wasn’t until we had this scene that we figured we could- this episode worked.
Paul Lieberstein [01:14:29] Yeah.
B.J. Novak [01:14:30] In the writing stage. In the outlining stage.
Paul Lieberstein [01:14:33] Yeah, I was. I was sitting in editing. You came in with a note card.
B.J. Novak [01:14:37] From- Written by Aaron Shure.
Paul Lieberstein [01:14:39] It just said.
B.J. Novak [01:14:40] Michael spanks Luke.
Paul Lieberstein [01:14:41] Michael spanks Luke. Yeah.
B.J. Novak [01:14:43] And you said we got it.
Paul Lieberstein [01:14:44] Yeah.
Jenna [01:14:45] That’s very funny.
Angela [01:14:47] I texted Aaron, and I was like, Aaron, is this true? And he goes, Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s right.
Jenna [01:14:55] I love it. Well, now we’re going to go back over to the elevator bay. Dwight and Pam are stuck. they’ve managed to get a technician, a real technician, who was played by Tom Melby.
Angela [01:15:08] Yes, Tom Melby was our stage manager. He was there the whole entire run of the show. He basically knew everything about the property where we filmed and could fix anything.
Jenna [01:15:18] And I love that we put him in this episode working on the elevator.
Angela [01:15:23] They said on the commentary that Tom was so shy, and that’s why he kind of kept his head tucked down.
Jenna [01:15:28] Well, you know, this was a fakey elevator. This was not real. And so this was a huge, elaborate thing that they had to build of us being stuck between floors, being up high like that with that little opening. But all of it, you know, even earlier, you know, we’ve said the elevator doors opened and closed because there was a crew person, like doing a rope on a pulley. So when we had that whole moment before, when the elevators breaking down, that was a very elaborate set of like someone was shaking the elevator, someone was pulling on the pulleys. It was like very like old timey.
Angela [01:16:06] I was going to say, it sounds like a vaudeville show.
Jenna [01:16:08] Yes. That’s kind of what it was. But we actually shot this broken elevator in a completely different spot. It wasn’t even in our little lobby. It was over on the warehouse stage, on stage four. They recreated the lobby. Michael Gallenberg designed it. Tim James built it. And it was on a platform that was about four feet above the stage. I just remember it was like this really cool thing that they had to build and then I had to stand up there. We really were high up.
Angela [01:16:37] You really were.
Jenna [01:16:38] I have a question for you, Angela. So in this scene where Pam’s stuck in the elevator with Dwight, Jim comes over. She’s so proud of herself. She says, They don’t call me the Bart Simpson of Scranton for nothing. Jim says, Here, I’ll help you down. And she says, Nope, it’s okay. I’m afraid of getting cut in half.
Angela [01:16:54] Mm hmm.
Jenna [01:16:55] I have a question.
Angela [01:16:56] Okay.
Jenna [01:16:57] If you were stuck like Pam, would you go through the little opening or would you be afraid of being cut in half?
Angela [01:17:04] Huh. I mean, I don’t want to be cut in half, but I think in that moment, I would just want out. So I think I would I would go for it. If if I could just slip right out there, I’d probably go for it.
Jenna [01:17:15] I don’t think I would do it, because I would just think of that scene in Speed.
Angela [01:17:19] Yes!
Jenna [01:17:20] When they’re stuck in the elevator and they’re having the people come through. And it keeps falling.
Angela [01:17:23] Yeah. You can’t hesitate.
Jenna [01:17:24] It keeps falling. Is that it?
Angela [01:17:26] You can’t hesitate.
Jenna [01:17:28] I mean, they had to have me say that because they wanted the visual comic gag of, like, me being in this broken elevator. Why is Pam not coming out?
Angela [01:17:37] Yeah. I probably would have already crawled out if those guys would have let me.
Jenna [01:17:42] That’s very funny.
Angela [01:17:44] Well, wrapping up this episode, Michael has earned the respect of his coworkers. Luke was a real problem, and he got rid of Luke, and they’re happy about it. They have a whole scene where they’re pretending to spank each other.
Jenna [01:17:58] However, Gabe is not happy that Michael assaulted an employee. At work. And to deal with it, he tells Michael he’s going to need to attend six counseling sessions. And Michael’s like, That’s it?
Angela [01:18:13] No problem.
Jenna [01:18:15] Except your counselor will be Toby.
Angela [01:18:17] What?!
Jenna [01:18:18] It’s literally be fired, or do six counseling sessions with Toby, and Michael isn’t sure what he wants.
Angela [01:18:25] He really takes a long, lingering look. And on the commentary, they said that was Steve, that choice to make that look of like, hmm, well, should I just call it quits?
Jenna [01:18:38] This is going to lead into next week’s episode, which is that counseling session between Michael and Toby. It is delicious. Before we go, Angela, we got this letter from Catherine P in Bellevue, Nebraska, and it really touched my heart. So I wanted to share.
Angela [01:18:55] Okay.
Jenna [01:18:56] Catherine said, I wanted to tell you that this episode is incredibly meaningful to my family. I started watching The Office on Netflix when I was pregnant with my oldest and just found out she would need heart surgery after she was born. It was not only a life saver, but fast forward to my daughter, born and waiting for surgery. On her bad days we would watch this episode specifically. My husband and entire family know that season seven episode one is the lip dub. My daughter would smile and light up for her favorite faces, singing just for her. She had surgery at four months old right before Christmas. The Office kept us going during a very hard time for our little warrior. I took pictures of her laying in her swing, pleased as punch to be watching the lip dub for what had to have been the thousandth time. She is now a thriving and perfectly healthy eight year old and we are forever grateful to the Scranton branch. P.S. She had an opportunity to meet Kate Flannery several years ago and she hasn’t stopped talking about it since.
Angela [01:20:02] That just made me tear up.
Jenna [01:20:04] I know.
Angela [01:20:05] Catherine, can we please send your daughter some Office Ladies stuff? We would love to send her something. Thank you so much for sharing that. I’m so glad that our show could be there for you and your family.
Jenna [01:20:17] Yeah, I love it that this episode specifically has a special place in your heart.
Angela [01:20:23] Catherine, we’re going to email you. Be on the lookout for it. Well, you guys, that was Nepotism. Sam is waving at us. Sam, what do you got? Did you find out about peeing in the pool?
Sam [01:20:32] I did. If you look up at the TV, I believe you’ll find your answer.
Angela [01:20:34] Oh. All right, here it is. Does a swimming pool urine detecting dye actually exist?
Jenna [01:20:40] It says, no such chemical is used. Doesn’t exist.
Angela [01:20:46] But 52% of people believe there is a chemical that, when added to a pool, will turn your urine a color. You guys, we basically all believed our moms or people at the public pool.
Jenna [01:20:58] It goes on to say, Regardless, pools are not meant to be put in because urine contains bacteria that you would not want to swim in. Please do not pee in pools.
Angela [01:21:08] There you have it, guys.
Jenna [01:21:09] Yeah, it won’t turn of color, but you shouldn’t do it anyway.
Angela [01:21:14] Well, that was Nepotism.
Jenna [01:21:15] Yeah. Thank you for listening. We love you guys. Thank you to Randy Cordray, Matt Sohn, Dave Rogers, Kate Flannery, Creed Bratton and Erin Shure for letting us reach out to you about this episode.
Angela [01:21:27] And thank you for sending in your questions and comments. Next week we are going to have a rerun of Beach Games. And then the following week we will have an all new episode, Counseling.
Jenna [01:21:37] See you then! 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 Fisher. Our producer is Cassi Jerkins. Our sound engineer is Sam Kieffer. And our associate producer is Aynsley Bubbico.
Angela [01:21:57] Our theme song is Rubber Tree by Creed Bratton. For ad free versions of Office Ladies, go to Stitcher premium dot com. For a free one month trial of Stitcher Premium, use code: Office.