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  #1  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:22 AM
vislor vislor is offline
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The Office???

Similar to other threads about TV shows, I sat down and watched the pilot episode of The Office last night on Netflix. The show did not grab me at all. I think I got a half chuckle at one thing in the whole thing. Otherwise, it didn't interest me at all.

In watching only that one episode, I have no interest in watching it again unless I'm told it gets much better.

So, does it get better? Is it worth my time to watch a few more?

Thanks, Dopers!

vislor
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  #2  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:27 AM
Sicks Ate Sicks Ate is offline
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Which version? US or UK? I like the US version, so I decided to watch the original one, but I couldn't get in to it.

Part of it was that I have a hard time understanding accents sometimes, and there are some heavy ones (to my ears) on The Office.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:27 AM
blondebear blondebear is online now
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Both are worth watching, but I prefer the Americanized version.

Last edited by blondebear; 05-03-2012 at 09:27 AM..
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  #4  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:28 AM
Astral Rejection Astral Rejection is offline
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It gets better. They find their own voice as the first season progresses. Then around season 4 or 5, it gets worse. Then it's bad for a whole season. Then Steve Carrell leaves, and it's awesome (if a bit aimless) again.

That's just my opinion, though. Ask somebody else, and they'll say it's awesome until Steve Carrell leaves. Overall, I'd say it's definitely worth sticking around for. You could even skip to the second season for better quality, and you won't miss much.
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  #5  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:32 AM
hogarth hogarth is offline
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The pilot episode of the American series is just a (poor) re-enactment of the first episode of the British series. Once they get to original episodes, the American series improves.
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  #6  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:33 AM
Dewey Finn Dewey Finn is offline
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Originally Posted by Sicks Ate View Post
Which version? US or UK?
Note that doesn't even include all of the options. There are German, French, French-Canadian, Swedish, Israeli and Chilean versions of the show as well.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:36 AM
Sicks Ate Sicks Ate is offline
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Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
Note that doesn't even include all of the options. There are German, French, French-Canadian, Swedish, Israeli and Chilean versions of the show as well.
Excuse my ignorance, but Those People have TV?

Noted, but I will say that in conversations about The Office, I've never been asked 'Which one, the US or Chilean one?"
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  #8  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:37 AM
Munch Munch is offline
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Originally Posted by vislor View Post
In watching only that one episode, I have no interest in watching it again unless I'm told it gets much better.
There are very few pilot episodes that are ever good. In fact, there are very few first seasons of long-running shows that are good.
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:44 AM
Dewey Finn Dewey Finn is offline
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Originally Posted by Sicks Ate View Post
Excuse my ignorance, but Those People have TV?

Noted, but I will say that in conversations about The Office, I've never been asked 'Which one, the US or Chilean one?"
True, and I doubt that any of those other versions are available on Netflix. But it would be fun to watch the different versions, just to see how the cultural differences.

Like how does the Dwight equivalent come off in Germany?

Last edited by Dewey Finn; 05-03-2012 at 09:46 AM..
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  #10  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:50 AM
RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
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Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
Like how does the Dwight equivalent come off in Germany?
This article compares and contrasts various versions of the show.
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  #11  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:51 AM
vislor vislor is offline
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Originally Posted by Munch View Post
There are very few pilot episodes that are ever good. In fact, there are very few first seasons of long-running shows that are good.
First, US version.

The show has been going for eight (?) seasons now and I guess I expected more. I really expected it to grab me and pull me into it but it didn't. Heck, it didn't even describe who they were talking to when they look at the camera? Was it a news crew? Upper management?

Second, fair enough, not only what Munch said but what most said. However, I will disagree, and I know there will be disagreements to my disagreement. But I think there have been shows that I liked (obviously) that did well from the pilot onward.

Firefly
Supernatural
Castle
Friends
Big Bang Theory
(new) Doctor Who (although long time fan, so this one isn't fair)
Red Dwarf

These shows, for me, started out well and kept going. A few low points but overall quite good.

I won't get into my own full list, but there were more that at least started well. Bones is an example that started well but I am not thrilled about it now and only watch it because Mrs vislor wants to watch it. I could give that up. But it started out great and pulled me into it from the first episode.

Maybe I'm expecting too much?

vislor
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  #12  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:53 AM
Wheelz Wheelz is offline
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Originally Posted by Astral Rejection View Post
It gets better. They find their own voice as the first season progresses. Then around season 4 or 5, it gets worse. Then it's bad for a whole season. Then Steve Carrell leaves, and it's awesome (if a bit aimless) again.
This sounds about right. Though I never really found it "bad", the show did kind of run out of steam at some point, and it's seemed a bit fresher this season.

But, yeah, don't judge it by the pilot. Give it a few more episodes. It took them a little while to hit their rhythm, but once they did, it was the funniest show on TV for a couple of years, IMO. If it doesn't grab you, no big deal, but if it does grab you, you'll be hooked by the middle of the first season.
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  #13  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:54 AM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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The thing about The Office is that you really have to push yourself to make it through the first season, it's just not that good. I gave up once and someone pestered me to stick it out. Then, after that, you have to decide if you can put up with the awkwardness that the show makes you feel. If mellows out a bit after a few seasons though.
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  #14  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:58 AM
NAF1138 NAF1138 is offline
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Originally Posted by vislor View Post

Maybe I'm expecting too much?

vislor
The show almost got canceled in its first season because it was so bad so yes, you were expecting too much, and yes it gets better. About half way through season 1 is starts to improve and by season 2 it's genuinely very good. Season 3 is maybe one of the best seasons of sitcom television to be produced on network American TV, season 4 is not quite as good and season 5 is the last season that is worth watching. After that it's still fine, it's just no longer really all that great.

The reboot this season is hit and miss, a lot like the first season was. I think they are still trying to figure out where to go with it, but it's not bad.

Last edited by NAF1138; 05-03-2012 at 09:58 AM..
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  #15  
Old 05-03-2012, 11:07 AM
enalzi enalzi is offline
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I say just skip to the second season. The first season is only six episodes, so you won't be lost. If you like it, then go back and rewatch it.
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  #16  
Old 05-03-2012, 11:29 AM
hogarth hogarth is offline
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Originally Posted by NAF1138 View Post
The show almost got canceled in its first season because it was so bad so yes, you were expecting too much, and yes it gets better. About half way through season 1 is starts to improve and by season 2 it's genuinely very good.
I thought most of the Season 1 episodes were pretty good, except for the pilot. The second episode (Diversity Day) was quite funny, for instance.
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  #17  
Old 05-04-2012, 04:49 AM
running coach running coach is online now
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I am ashamed to say I'm still on the book I started a month ago, I will just skip to the second season. Generally speaking,i don't like the first season.
Spam in profile-reported.
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  #18  
Old 05-04-2012, 05:15 AM
Giles Giles is offline
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Originally Posted by runner pat View Post
Spam in profile-reported.
What is "spam in profile"? (Apart from the fact that sweetyang's profile has nothing in it apart from the defaults.)
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  #19  
Old 05-04-2012, 05:17 AM
running coach running coach is online now
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What is "spam in profile"? (Apart from the fact that sweetyang's profile has nothing in it apart from the defaults.)
His home page. Online battery seller.
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  #20  
Old 05-04-2012, 05:21 AM
Giles Giles is offline
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Is that against the rules? (Apart from the need to go two steps into the profile to see it.)
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  #21  
Old 05-04-2012, 05:27 AM
running coach running coach is online now
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That's why the heads-up to the mods. It still might be visible to search engines.

Just found this.

Last edited by running coach; 05-04-2012 at 05:28 AM..
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  #22  
Old 05-04-2012, 08:39 AM
twickster twickster is offline
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Mod note

In general if someone registers with a spam link in their sig/profile, we treat them as a spammer. If they protested, we might take another look, but no one ever protests.
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  #23  
Old 05-04-2012, 06:09 PM
Lamia Lamia is offline
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Originally Posted by vislor View Post
The show has been going for eight (?) seasons now and I guess I expected more. I really expected it to grab me and pull me into it but it didn't. Heck, it didn't even describe who they were talking to when they look at the camera? Was it a news crew? Upper management?
This has never been explained, and I doubt it ever will be -- not unless they decide to include it in the series finale. If you want to watch The Office you just have to accept that it's shot in a documentary style and not think too much about it beyond that.
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  #24  
Old 05-04-2012, 07:18 PM
Wesley Clark Wesley Clark is online now
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I like the American version but it takes 5 or 6 episodes to get a good idea about the personalities of the characters. The humor is a lot better after you get to that point.
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  #25  
Old 05-04-2012, 07:23 PM
NAF1138 NAF1138 is offline
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Originally Posted by Lamia View Post
This has never been explained, and I doubt it ever will be -- not unless they decide to include it in the series finale. If you want to watch The Office you just have to accept that it's shot in a documentary style and not think too much about it beyond that.
In the UK version it is more or less explained that it's a TV documentary along the lines of...oh, what was that show that followed around people working in an airport, or John and Kate plus Eight. They even talk about, in the last episode, how some people are getting recognised on the streets now that the show has aired.

I always assumed it was the same in the US version and they are just waiting until they are done with their (very long) filming period to air the footage.
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  #26  
Old 05-04-2012, 08:12 PM
Lamia Lamia is offline
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Originally Posted by NAF1138 View Post
In the UK version it is more or less explained that it's a TV documentary along the lines of...oh, what was that show that followed around people working in an airport, or John and Kate plus Eight. They even talk about, in the last episode, how some people are getting recognised on the streets now that the show has aired.

I always assumed it was the same in the US version and they are just waiting until they are done with their (very long) filming period to air the footage.
In the last episode with Michael Scott (late season 7), he says something like "Hey, let me know when this finally airs" to the cameraman before going off to catch his plane. So Michael at least has some expectation that this documentary will eventually be on US television, but it's not clear whether this is a realistic expectation. While other characters have occasionally acknowledged the presence of the film crew, this scene with Michael was the only hint as to why the crew was there in the first place. If vislor is hoping for any real backstory on this, I think s/he is going to be disappointed.

The two most popular fanwanks seem to be that in-universe The Office is either a documentary about American office life that's being produced for an overseas audience, or it's not a professional production at all -- maybe there's an "Intro to Documentary Filmmaking" course at the local community college or something.
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  #27  
Old 05-04-2012, 08:25 PM
Red Barchetta Red Barchetta is online now
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Originally Posted by Lamia View Post
While other characters have occasionally acknowledged the presence of the film crew, this scene with Michael was the only hint as to why the crew was there in the first place.
Occasionally? Jim mugs it up for the camera at least once per episode.

At any rate, I always thought it would be a neat twist if a show was filmed documentary style, like The Office, but that the show also actually aired on TV in-universe. Meaning anything said in candid to the cameras would become office fodder within the next few weeks after it airs. It would also be fun to have the characters deal with increasing fame as they go about their decreasingly normal lives.
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  #28  
Old 05-04-2012, 08:32 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Originally Posted by Red Barchetta View Post
Occasionally? Jim mugs it up for the camera at least once per episode.
Not only that, Karen even said "What do I think about Jim, I don't know, he looks at the camera and makes that stupid face all the time" or something like that.

Other then the interviews, the camera crew is acknowledged all the time. More often in the beginning then in the later seasons.

Here's the clip where she says it. Someone slowed it down to make it seem like she's drunk..it's kinda funny.

Last edited by Joey P; 05-04-2012 at 08:33 PM..
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  #29  
Old 05-04-2012, 08:58 PM
Shalmanese Shalmanese is offline
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Originally Posted by Lamia View Post

The two most popular fanwanks seem to be that in-universe The Office is either a documentary about American office life that's being produced for an overseas audience, or it's not a professional production at all -- maybe there's an "Intro to Documentary Filmmaking" course at the local community college or something.
'The Office' Ends As Documentary Crew Gets All The Footage It Needs
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  #30  
Old 05-04-2012, 11:26 PM
Runs With Scissors Runs With Scissors is offline
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I watched the first two seasons.

It's pretty meh. I can't stand the characters of Michael Scott and Dwight.

I realize they are supposed to be annoying.

But I deal with enough annoying people in real life. Why would I spend my leisure time watching them?

Of course, my argument is completely negated by the fact that I love 30 Rock.
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  #31  
Old 05-05-2012, 12:07 PM
Lamia Lamia is offline
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Originally Posted by Red Barchetta View Post
Occasionally? Jim mugs it up for the camera at least once per episode.
I said "occasionally" because a while back we had a thread where someone claimed that The Office was not being shot by an in-world documentary crew at all, and that the glances at the camera and interview segments were just breaking the fourth wall. This does seem to be the case on Modern Family, but on The Office there have been a few scenes where there can be no doubt that the documentary format isn't just a stylistic thing and a film crew is present in-world, such as Jim telling the cameraman to get down when they went to spy on the Utica branch and he was trying to hide in the car.
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