First of all, it's clear from Thursday's episode of The Office that a 22-minute conversation between Jim and Pam would be more interesting, entertaining and touching than most of what's on television in a given week.
But this week's episode was about Ryan. Ryan hasn't been too hard to figure out so far. He's in a relationship with Kelly that defies all explanation except the one that's completely implied - that when Kelly stops talking or planning their wedding, sex with her is just plain addictive. (It has become something of a habit for actress Mindy Kaling, who left Paul Rudd so freaky-deaky in The 40-Year-Old Virgin.) Ryan's also in a job he can barely stand, working with people he holds almost entirely in contempt, for no other reason than to have something on his resume and his paycheck to carry him to business school.
He has shown vulnerability, signs that he might be Dunder-Mifflin material, such as the time he accidentally started a kitchen fire and stood to be known as "The Fire Guy" - except "Temp" remained more demeaning. He has also shown charm, such as when he joined Pam in slyly, delicately subverting Michael's grief circle last week.
But Thursday, Ryan has revealed a whole new layer. Ryan is so desperate to succeed that he'll accompany Dwight, at length, on what by definition would be a fool's errand. And he's so devastated by rejection that he'll be the first to grab eggs to hurl at the building of a company whose people chose not to buy paper for him (and, admittedly, told Ryan they didn't like him).
Ryan has issues. He has limitations. And I hate to break the news to him, but that means Ryan might be around for a while.
In the meantime, Pam might have finally digested that Stamford isn't as far away from Scranton as she might think. (Here, I'll Mapquest it for you - just 2 1/2 hours or so in her new car with the nice cupholders. Her question to Jim about "What time is it there?" was heartbreaking because it revealed what a daze she's in when it comes to him. She may still need some "me-time," but perhaps the Pam-Jim-Karen triangle is about to be truly ignited.