When The Hourglass Strikes Three, Then In The Room Whence Employees Confer

I thought this was a super-weird episode of The Office from the get-go. The pacing felt all wrong. There wasn’t much laugh-out-loud funny stuff at all – more like little bits of awkward humor that resulted from terribly strained situations. Because listen: as much as I love Dwight and Andy individually, watching them interact with each other in that interview was flat-out painful and, I might add, barely worthy of a giggle.

However, I did smile. And I laughed (mildly) a few times. But mostly I just winced and felt like I needed to look away from the TV because I had no business watching so much personal pain.

A few (mildly) entertaining moments:

1) Andy in the catsuit. OH ANDY.

2) “I said ‘first’ and then he said ‘first’ and then I said ‘jinx’… and then we haven’t talked about it again.”

3) “I meant that as a compliment to you, Phyllis, as well as a slight to Andy.”

4) The group sing of “Life Is A Highway.”

5) “Did Darrell touch you?”

6) “It’s pronounced ‘colonel.’ It’s the highest rank in the military.”

7) Dane Cook. Jack Bauer. Eli Whitney.

8) “Maybe at Thanksgivng we should prank Tom for being bald.”

9) Michael and Darrell singing the blues.

10) Andy taking a bite out of the beet.

Did y’all think it was weird, too? Or am I the weird one?

It’s probably that last thing.

Did anything make you laugh out loud?

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  1. I loved it when Creed showed up as the Joker. But I agree, not so much lol funny. Just a bunch of awkwardness. I am glad that Pam & Jim were ok. But kinda sad for Michael and Holly.

  2. Pam saying she can’t take off the hat from her Charlie Chaplin costume because “then I’m just Hitler.” I cracked up.

    I think most of it did seem a little awkward…hopefully this will remedy itself.

  3. i thought the “when the hourglass strikes three” was the best line of the night. This one was a bit off, I agree.

  4. The ONLY parts I laughed at were:

    1. Dwight on the elevator doing the JOker impersonation
    2. Pam as Charlie Chaplin/Hitler

    It WAS a strange one. I’m ready for another rabies race for the cure.

  5. I totally thought it was weird. Sad.

  6. Definitely a strange one!!!

  7. It was off. However, 30 Rock was dead on. I do love Tina Fey.

  8. “Did Darrell touch you?” made me laugh out loud, but the funniest part was the Life is a Highway sing-along. I think it was so entertaining because all I could think of was you and your friends riding along in a minivan rockin’ it out to “Separate Lives” and “When She Danced”!

    I agree that this was one of the most awkward and hard to look at episodes in recent memory. Usually the awkwardness is funny, but this was just, well…awkward.


  9. I totally agree! I LOVED the opening (Andy was Rum Tum Tugger from “Cats,” and I was given the ‘Wow-my-daughter-is-a-nerd’ look from my mom when I pointed that out), so I had HIGH expectations going into the rest of the episode. But man, it just went downhill FAST from there.

    Also, Pam’s idea for a prank? That she lost her ring? Umm…we ALL know she can come up with a prank SO much better than that. And I didn’t get Jim’s brothers’ prank at all.

    Yes. It was a very, very awkward episode. Here’s hoping next week they get their act together.

  10. I cracked up when Kevin (in bad Joker makeup) jumped up and almost knocked Angela over and said “I’ve been up since 4:00!” So that along with what everyone else said was about it.

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  12. I tagged you! Thought maybe you’d want to play. Besides, I wanted to laugh at your answers!!

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  13. oops!! Typed in my own address wrong! Doesn’t surprise me! See my post before the one titles – I’m it!!


  14. I thought it was VERY weird and not funny. I was disappointed. But I still love the office.

  15. I thought the jump from the opening Halloween stuff to the other day was odd. Pam as Hitler was pretty much the only time I laughed out loud. And “did Darrell touch you?” But I’m still a fan!

  16. I thought it was on the weird side, too. Andy and Dwight, the latter half of the trip to move Holly, and the prank with Jim’s brothers all were just too strained without enough comedy to balance them out.

    I don’t remember laughing out loud, but I thought it was funny that Pam was the only one who dressed up at her office, and that she couldn’t take her hat off because then she looked like Hitler. And that Creed and Dwight (and one other guy whose name I can’t think of right now) were dressed as the Joker. Creed was the creepiest!

  17. whew…I thought I was the only one thinking it was a little out there. I saw we demand a redo. The joker thing just wasn’t funny and I wanted to bawl for Pam and the prank gone bad. Oh, I did love Kelly dressed as Carrie Bradshaw.

  18. Yeah, it was weird that the opening had everyone in costume and then when they came back from commercial, it was the next day. I was disappointed. I wanted more Halloween-y stuff. Pam in costume was a laugh-out-loud moment, though, definintely!

    I’m really ready for a break from sad Offices.

    Pam and Jim need to have some non-stressful moments. I know I should just roll with it (I know we’re building tension, so we can all weep with joy when they get it all worked out), but they didn’t even seem excited to see each other! When they met at the restaurant it was like, ho hum, yawn. …Unless there was some big hug/kiss moment that I missed when I went to the bathroom. Do I need to rewind the DVR?

    Michael and Holly. They had some funny moments in the truck with Darrell, but overall, it was just SAD.

    Dwight and Andy did crack me up. I like Frazzled Andy. I kept waiting for a broke-his-brain wall punching moment to land him back in Anger Management.

    Overall, weird is a good word to describe it all.

  19. Yes it was definitely weird. Definitely not going down as one of my top ten all time favorite Office episodes, that’s for sure.

  20. I must be the only one in this century who get or like The Office? I wish I did. Oh. I wish I did.

    I still like your blog. Except when I feel left out as you blog about The Office. Which thankfully isn’t often. I enjoy the more important discussions on things like, oh, say…cupcakes? :)

    If you ever blogged on a show as important as The Biggest Loser, I’d totally get on board. Because THAT is a really important show.

    ha! :)

  21. Modern Cabbage
    Head shaped like a trapezoid
    Big Bear Bobble Head
    Andy dressed like the Rum Tum Tugger from “Cats” (creepy, too)–just wish he’d broken out in a broadway song!
    Creed- Colonel it’s the highest rank in the military
    Andy and his beet farm

    Didn’t enjoy Jim and Pam or Michael and Holly…ug.

  22. Weird. And I was hoping this week’s episode would be better than last week’s.


  23. Pam as Chaplin/Hitler made me laugh out loud.

    The mascot bobblehead next to Dwight’s bobblehead.

    The blues at the end was just very sweet. :)

  24. Yeah, I hear you. I felt like it never got started and then it ended. There were a few moments, but the lunch scene with Jim’s brothers, I just didn’t get it. That wasn’t a prank at all, just weird. But I did love that Michael was giving directions for running the office to Jim and he was walking to his car.

  25. Okay I guess I must have a twisted sense of humor- or other wise very easy to please- because I LOVED this episode. I laughed out loud throughout the whole thing. Dwight/Andy were great and Creed/Dwight/Kevin all dressed as Joker- oh just too funny.

    There were some awkward parts, but I felt like those moments only enhanced the rest of the funny parts.

  26. I LOVED this episode!!! The awkwardness in the truck scenes was hilarious. You could see that all Darryl wanted was to escape. And the Dwight/Andy showdown mutually evaluating each other (head shaped like a trapezoid?!) was wonderful.

  27. I wanted to like it, I really did….

    I kept hanging in there, hoping it would redeem itself, but alas, no.

    That’s OK though, not enough to keep me from tuning back in next week!!

  28. Remember last week when I said I was an Office newbie? Well, I found out last night that it actually starts at 8:00 and not 8:30. Oops. 30Rock is a stupid show. Oh well, next week…

  29. I did think the Pam/Charlie Chaplin/ Hitler thing at the beginning was funny. I also thought the entire bit with Dwight and Andy was funny. I thought it was a little weird to write into the show that Andy would be doing Dwight’s entrance interview on Cornell’s behalf – that was really a little unbelievable. Other than that I thought it was a funny episode….

  30. It’s so fun to read these comments!! I live in Ithaca, NY (home of Cornell)and my husband is a CU graduate…so all of the references were spot-on, and we were giddy throughout the entire episode…

    My mom grew up in Nashua, NH and as a kid I would spend time there visiting relatives, etc.

    It’s funny how when something touches you (not in a Darryl touch way) personally, it can change your perspective while others see it in an entirely different manner!

  31. Yes, a few other people said it but I laughed outloud when Pam said she couldn’t take her hat off otherwise she’d look like Hitler, not Chaplin – it was true!

  32. The whole thing just made me want to cry. But I did like the end when Michael didn’t know how to sing his blues part and just ended up doing the background singing with Daryl.

  33. I guess my brain was dead and I totally forgot it was on, but I did see part of it. I kind of laughed out loud over the Cornell stuff and the ‘Colonel’ comment.

    Other than that…lame. Whats up?

  34. Yes, very odd. I remember thinking, as it ended, “what? that’s it? they didn’t even get to the funny part yet…”

  35. I thought the whole episode was going to be about Halloween at the Office, which I would have loved seeing the three Jokers walk around, then when it skipped, I got a little lost. I like it when the episode takes place over one day.

    So, I concur with your weirdness assessment.

  36. The Office is one shoe I just do not get. I have tried and tried to watch it on several occasions, but I never think any of them are funny.

  37. I still laughed a lot, but I definitely thought it was a bit heavy on the awkward-but-not-funny-awkward-just-plain-awkward scenes!
    Laughed out loud at Pam as Chaplin/Hitler, Andy “going for a Kitten,” and the Life is a Highway singalong!

  38. Ya, I wasn’t super happy with this one either. I thought the Joker costumes were a little weird. I kept thinking about Heath Ledger–isn’t it a bit awkward? The whole Cornell thing was a bit weird, too. Although Andy’s anger at Dwight was pretty palpable!

  39. Yeah, it was a little awkward but I’ve come to expect that. Especially with Michael. Or as Darrell calls him, “Mike”.

    I am proud of Jim for standing up to his big brothers. Ahhh.

  40. It was a theme of uncomfortable moments.
    1) Pam being made fun of about being an artist
    2) Dwight and Andy fighting over Cornel
    3) Jim and Holly breaking up

  41. Boo mama, I don’t even know you. I’m a neighbor of Brody Harper. But, I knew I could come here and feel better. We both have a crazy love for The Office. Last nights episode was so weird!

  42. I actually thought it was hilarious! The bit about Cornell had me laughing out loud. I loved it.

  43. Yeah, I thought this was the “Halloween episode”, but all we got was the opener. I was sad about that.

    I loved the Dwight/Andy/Cornell angst, and how Dwight was evaluating the interviewer as Andy was evaluating the interviewee, all leading to a table-shoving match.

    I was sad for Michael again. He finally found a girl who loves him for who he is and stupid Corporate had to go and move her away.

  44. Oh, I feel so much better – I thought it was just me! I’m a “newby” to The Office and am still trying to catch up and figure every one out. I am usually rolling on the floor with laughter but last night night’s episode was just w-r-o-n-g!

  45. Did anyone catch that Pam said she made a mark on her finger as if she lost her ring or something to that effect? Does that mean she’s trying to say, she really lost her ring and was trying to gauge his reaction?
    Or maybe I watch LOST too much and am trying to read things into it…
    Yea Jim’s brothers are lame-o.

  46. I thought the episode was odd, as well. I will disagree about the interview. When they were both talking at the same time, and Dwight started dragging the table away from Andy, I laughed harder than I have at a single moment in the last few episodes.

  47. I loved it! I thought it was one of the better ones this season. I thought the Andy/Dwight interview was hilarious, and it reminded me of when Dwight interviewed Andy for the assistant to the regional manager position.

    I too was bummed there wasn’t more about Halloween; when it came on after the open, it took a few seconds for DH and I to realize it was no longer Halloween.

  48. It was painfully weird:-)

  49. Charlotte says:

    Awkward… yes. Weird… a little. Disappointing… indeed, since it was previewed as a Halloween episode.

    My opinion is that this episode was written primarily to get the Michael-Holly breakup over with, and to let us know that Jim and Pam are ok (at least for now). The Dwight-Andy thing was filler.

    Loved all the costumes, but Jim dressed as “Dave”…genius.

  50. I had two “giggle out loud” moments – not really laughs – Pam saying she couldn’t take her hat off because she looked Hitler AND when Andy was saw the bear bobble head “It’s Big Red Bear, it’s a bobble Big Red Bear” such indignation.

  51. It was weird and I was really confused when everyone had on costumes and then all of a sudden no one did anymore – I was like “is it a different day? Did I miss something?”

  52. I agree…it was a strange episode…but I did laugh out loud at a few things…one which was watching how Dwight knew how to bite into a beet the right way…he is gaining confidence in his superiority over Andy…and I think Angela is taking notice!

  53. What was funny to me (a Cornell grad who didn’t get into Dartmouth) was the Dartmouth reference Dwight made…

    I also enjoyed the bobble head Dwight and Cornell Bear!

  54. I thought it was pretty funny overall. I am a Creed fan – I really laughed when he said it’s pronounced colonel. I was sad at the end for Michael!

  55. Ohmygosh when Michael went back inside and told Holly, “I’m gonna ride back with Darrell,” — Pow. Right to the gut. Such a real moment, and not real in the way I’ve become used to with The Office. Brutal real. But yeah. A few little snorts, but no real belly laughs this time.

  56. mrsDebbie says:

    I liked the auction… esp the battle for the hug.

  57. Agreed – it wasn’t that funny. Michael and Holly breaking up was just too sad. But I did laugh out loud – and almost spit water out my mouth – at, “Did Darrel touch you?”

  58. I finally got to watch it last night. All I can say is, “Meh.”