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The Office attempts to build 'Paper Airplanes'

The Office (US) poster

Written by : published Sunday 28th April 2013

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It was a night of paper airplanes in The Office episode of the same name: “Paper Airplane” as the Dunder-Mifflin gang do an in-house paper airplane contest (going on company wide to support a new product that as Dwight (Rainn Wilson) states is harmful to the environment as it is made up of 60% plastic). Meanwhile Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer) are doing their homework from couples counseling while Andy (Ed Helms) is excited over his new gig in an industrial workplace film.

The Office keeps chugging along to its finale and with two episodes left to go, “Paper Airplane” definitely makes one wonder what the final moments will be. The episode quickly goes into the Angela (Angela Kinsey) and Dwight romance again as Angela is living alone with her son and multiple cats. She ponders what now as she turned Dwight down and while she cares she is afraid she will be considered a gold-digger. What is interesting is that the relationship manifests itself during the paper airplane competition as Dwight helps Angela move to the next round.

It was quite funny how Kevin (Brian Baumgartner) simply gave into Angela because he couldn’t fold a paper airplane. His plane he bought on Craigslist. When Dwight calls, as per the rules, a refold, Kevin, who can’t fold an airplane for anything is told to choose, simply replies “But I love them all so much. Also, none of them can fly.”

Pam throws her airplane... into Toby's eye.

The Jim and Pam part of the episode is a bit difficult to watch reminding me of the early days of how difficult it was to watch Michael Scott at his first until around season three.  It’s not exactly the same, it is done in different effect but it is two sides of the same coin: while we like Michael we understood he was an idiot doing horribly awkward (and idiotic) things. Jim and Pam are forced through awkward moments due to their homework from the counselor who advised to speak truths and speak of feelings, and it was so very hard to watch your favorite television couple go through that.

Yet, I’m not going to lie. I really hate what Andy has become, and continue to not like Andy.  In a way, it is like they kept Andy as that character that literally bends to the whim of whatever the writers need of him.  And it is heartbreaking because as the series continues towards it’s final march, it seems to want him to be what David Brent is/was. And that is heartbreaking. Michael Scott was a more well-rounded (in a US-series-way) version of Brent, and it felt like he had proper closure for the documentary itself. The question is though, will the documentary focus on Michael Scott at all? The idea that it hints at in the commercials the senator love triangle amongst other things is odd that it would jump that far into the future after recording the documentary for this long. So it sometimes begs the question: What IS the point?!

Not going to lie, while some of the episodes are quite good and match with other classic episodes of the US-based version of The Office, the final storylines reek of what feels like poor planning and if not that, poor execution. 

Andy WeepsI can’t really help to think that yeah, the series isn’t done yet, but in some ways, I feel like The Office sometimes is having an out of body experience, watching itself as it just continues along the motions along with us at home and that is a bit disconcerting.  By all accounts, if the finale which airs in two weeks is what it says it is: a follow-up look at the Dunder-Mifflin gang a year or so after the documentary airs or after it airs, period, well, then color me intrigued BUT also note that the next episode is technically the normal ‘finale’ compared to the original UK version. Imagine some storylines given a quick wrap-up with sad results to see them ‘repaired’ or ‘okay’ in the finale. (Jim and Pam, I’m looking at you.)

Watching “Paper Airplane” for all it’s moments of hilarity (and there are quite a few moments) only reminds me what has been wrong with The Office as it continues along it’s path towards the series finale and while I watch with baited breath on what happens with our faves from the Dunder-Mifflin branch, I sometimes wish I hadn’t bothered to begin with.

Watch Episode 20 - Paper Airplane online

About the author goodbadgeeky


Nick ‘Nitro’ Arganbright has an extreme love for a good story, whether it be in film, tv, video games, comic books, music or more and it shows in each article and podcast he produced. The titular podcast he produces is called The Good The Bad & The Geeky with co-hosts Jon Bettin and Nathan ‘DJ Meat’ Haley. The podcast has helped him make a few contacts within in the industry which he hopes to use to entertain and inform readers of his reviews on Examiner.com and The TV King, offering an average joe opinion that is often overlooked in major print and online publications. If you’d like to e-mail him, please do so at [email protected] or you can tweet him on twitter at @goodbadgeeky.

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