Baseball Toaster Screen Jam
Screen Jam Open Chat/Jenna Fischer Blogging Live
2006-11-16 15:10
by Jon Weisman

Jenna Fischer of The Office is blogging live at tonight. It's a little tricky, though - she's blogging about tonight's episode after it airs on the East Coast, which means she'll start talking about it before it airs on the West Coast. So if you're like me, you'll catch up with her later.

Tonight's episode of The Office, scheduled to run from 8:36 p.m. to 9:20 p.m.

In the mean time, open-chat away. Just don't talk about any television that hasn't aired on the West Coast.

2006-11-16 15:52:41
1.   bhsportsguy
I just hope for another "producer's cut" but I won't hold my breath.
2006-11-16 15:57:02
2.   Greg Brock
Jim...Pam...Karen...Worlds Collide!

A Jim, divided against itself, cannot stand!

2006-11-16 15:58:46
3.   bhsportsguy
And I was going to add that comment about Jenna doing the chat.

How about one spoiler, Jim and Pam see each other for first time this season.

Its weird when you work in a office setting, people come and go, you have cake with them one day and then minutes after they go, you go after their office equipment.

Once you leave school, you see these people much more than friends or family and you can build these intense relationships that can end at the snap of a finger or a pink slip.

And there certainly is a difference in having offices as opposed to work stations.

Anyways just some ramblings, hopefully a good night of TV ahead.

2006-11-16 17:12:11
4.   ToyCannon
I made around 10 life long friends from the company I worked for when I was 26-30. The company blew but the friends have been priceless. Course I also met my wife at the same place.
2006-11-16 21:21:03
5.   Greg Brock
Round 1: Karen
2006-11-16 21:31:06
6.   Voxter
Quote of the night goes to Andy, I think:

"I'm always one step ahead. Like a carpenter. Who builds stairs."

Other than that, I thought this was truly a top-flight episode, one of the best shows on television strutting its stuff. I mean, there was part of me that just wanted Jim & Pam to fall into each other's arms and spend the next two episodes sullying every surface in each of Pam's three kitchens, but I knew that wasn't going to happen.

Andy and Dwight were great.

2006-11-16 21:42:18
7.   Greg Brock
I know a lot of people don't like Creed, but his few lines every episode are an absolute treasure for me. The guy is just so funny.

Andy vs. Dwight shapes up to be one of the great battles of incompetence television has every known.

2006-11-16 22:01:24
8.   Voxter
Who doesn't like Creed? I love Creed. Though his best line was actually read by Michael. ("Creed is tired of looking at the redhead, and wants a seat facing the receptionist.")
2006-11-16 22:05:46
9.   mintxcore
yeah, Creed is hilarious but did you see Toby??? hahahah the failed bump!
2006-11-16 22:10:25
10.   Jon Weisman
Yeah, I was surprised Jim left Toby hanging there.

But a great episode. I agree with 6.

2006-11-16 23:43:46
11.   Bob Timmermann
I think I need a "Lazy Scranton" type film for new employees.
2006-11-17 01:09:17
12.   Voxter
9 - Toby made me sad tonight.
2006-11-17 07:50:21
13.   JoeyP
An episode without Jan's screen presence cant be higher than a 7/10 for me. I need my weekly Jan, and her mere voice cannot suffice.

Overall though, I thought last nite's episode didnt really flow well. It almost seems like the office is too big now. The best part of The Office I typically like is the subtle humor, and I only found one instance last nite: When the new black guy gives Stanley the understated fist pump, and Stanley just rolls his eyes. That was pretty clever I thought.

Andy and Dwight were good. I think Andy might become a lead character. They can do alot with him.

The guy shredding the documents "they typically dont give me alot of responsibility"....that was good.

I also think Karen is now the "every woman" of the show and Jim is still the "everyman". Those two seem to be the only characters that either 1)arent playing a stereotype or 2)have serious character flaws. They just seem like they are playing themselves on screen, while the rest of the cast is playing a character.

Someone touched on this last week about whom Jim should choose (karen or Pam) in order to carry on the theme of the show. I think it almost has to be Karen bc Pam's already had her shot at Jim and broke his heart twice. How many guys would love to turn the tables on their former crush? I think that is what should happen. Pam had her chance, and now Jim's moving onto bigger and better things. Now its Jim's chance to break Pam's heart. Pam deserves it. She broke Roy's heart and Jim's at the same time. Now, its her turn to have her heart broke.

2006-11-17 09:38:28
14.   Knuckles
JoeyP, you're pretty adamant about whose hearts need to be broken...anything you want to get off your chest? :)

One of Dwight's first lines was the best, when talking about running a 7 minute mile.

"Pff, I could do that on a skateboard."

2006-11-17 10:03:38
15.   Bob Timmermann
Kelly's delight at welcoming back Jim and telling him celebrity gossip about Tom/Katie and Brad/Angelina and then:

Jim: So, Kelly, how are you doing?
Kelly: I just told you.

2006-11-17 11:47:45
16.   Benaiah
Do you guys think that Jim is actually dating Karen, or did he just say that to kind of distance himself from Pam. The reason I ask is, I could see him and Karen hanging out but it is weird for their relationship to take such a big leap when the last we heard Karen was just admitting that she liked him.

I disagree with JoeyP in that I think the bigger cast actually makes the show much more dynamic. The best thing about the show is the interpersonal relationships, and every new person introduces exponentially more possible interactions. Andy is a genius addition and between his competition with Jim and Dwight and his almost inevitable romantic entanglements in one way or another with Pam or Angela (I am guessing Angela) he really upped the ante on what was already the best show on television.

2006-11-17 12:07:01
17.   JoeyP
Do you guys think that Jim is actually dating Karen, or did he just say that to kind of distance himself from Pam.

Well, Karen did give him a ride home after they worked late/drank a couple of episodes ago. Maybe they leapt from that occurrence to actually seeing each other, although we as an audience dont know exactly what happened that nite.

I kinda find it strange they are playing up Karen being Italian, when Rashida Jones is mulatto. Her dad is Quincy Jones.

2006-11-17 12:20:34
18.   Jon Weisman
17 - What's your point? She's an actress playing a part. Is there any reason the father of the character couldn't have an Italian last name (assuming the most obvious rationale)? Or is this particular actress only allowed to play a part that has the same ancestry as she has? Does being biracial (the term I would have used, personally) rule out an Italian parent?

On Homicide, Yaphet Kotto played an Italian Jew.

2006-11-17 12:40:05
19.   Bob Timmermann
JoeyP meet Roy Campanella.
Roy Campanella meet JoeyP.
2006-11-17 12:48:13
20.   Andrew Shimmin
Karen is going to be very useful for Pam's focus. Finding oneself is the sort of thing that can go on forever, unless there's a good reason for it to not. Karen is just such a reason. It's unfortunate for her that she's just an "unconscious tool of history," but so it goes.
2006-11-17 14:08:56
21.   JoeyP
I just find it odd that the writers wouldnt just incorporate what Rashida Jones really is into the show and her character Karen, rather than have her play a part that she doesnt look.

I'm one that doesnt always separate the actors from the characters they are playing. Its a similar concept as to when a completely unathletic actor tries to play a role as a sports hero in a movie. Same principle.

Has Halle Berry ever played an Italian role? Or would the audience watch the movie and keep thinking "Halle Berry isnt Italian"? I'd be in the latter group.

2006-11-17 14:22:13
22.   Jon Weisman
21 - I'm sorry, you are not convincing as an authority on what all people of Italian descent must look like.

The comparison you're making to athletes vs. non-athletes is silly.

You rail against so-called stereotypes on The Office, yet you're so eager to pigeonhole both what Italians should look like and what Rashida Jones can play. I think this is a case of you needing to come to terms with reality, rather than the writers of The Office.

2006-11-17 14:26:31
23.   Andrew Shimmin
21- If nothing else, your comment has made it possible for me to post this:

"Is Maya Rudolph Italian?" --Paris Hilton

2006-11-17 14:34:48
24.   Terry A
Wow. There are some cringe-worthy comments going on around here today.
2006-11-17 14:45:55
25.   Andrew Shimmin
24- It's just the diminishing marginal return on Pam bashing. What's a compulsive attention seeker to do?
2006-11-17 14:49:49
26.   Terry A
None of these people are compulsive attention seekers.

At least, I've never seen them at the meetings.

2006-11-17 14:52:45
27.   Andrew Shimmin
I could easily be wrong, it's just very difficult for me to imagine a human adult born after the summer of love who doesn't know that mulatto isn't a word he'd want to use, outside of very narrow contexts.
2006-11-17 14:56:36
28.   Terry A
Yes, certainly not the best choice of terms.

Strange but true: Dairy Queen markets a coffee-milkshake concoction under the product name MooLatte.

2006-11-17 15:02:08
29.   Jon Weisman
28 - That's weird.

I can think of someone else who might have made similar comments to some of the ones above: Michael Scott.

2006-11-17 15:07:21
30.   Andrew Shimmin
Unless the character he's playing is seven years younger than he is, I'm still golden. Steve Carell, born 16 August 1962. Benaiah will know how old Michael Scott is, I'm sure.
2006-11-17 16:10:39
31.   Greg Brock
This whole conversation reminds me of the subtle scene where Michael says to the new employee (the young African American)

"Let me show you where we put our mean...uh...follow me."

2006-11-17 17:22:27
32.   Terry A
"Hey, your appearance is really exotic.

"Was your dad a G.I.?"

2006-11-17 17:28:52
33.   Terry A
More on the ill-advised MooLatte:

2006-11-19 11:31:40
34.   Benaiah
Michael is in his late 30s, and might have just turned 40. It was his birthday in one episode but I think he lied about his age. Sorry my Office knowledge is inversely proportional to how good my weekend was, especially on Sunday.
2006-11-19 14:52:19
35.   dan reines
And MORE on the MooLatte!

2006-11-19 14:57:11
36.   dan reines
Uh, er, heh -- here's more on the moolatte.

2006-11-20 08:38:40
37.   JoeyP
yet you're so eager to pigeonhole both what Italians should look like and what Rashida Jones can play

You're missing the entire point.
There's a reason why Francis Ford Coppola selected a cast of mostly Italian-American descent to play the characters in the Godfather movies. I think it helped authenticate the movie. I'm sure Dustin Hoffman--great actor--could have played a role in that film. But guess what? He's not Italian and Coppola knew that the audience would notice that.

There are other examples of this.

Would Heath Ledger or Antonio Banderas make a better Zorro, in The Mask of Zorro? Sure Ledger could have played the part, but I'm sure the audience would be thinking.."hey wait a minute Ledger is caucasian...Zorro is supposed be latin"...Jon Weisman sitting right beside this movie goer would be like, "Its ok, Ledger is "playing" a latin role", and the other guy would be like "yes, but I'm not buying it..doesnt resonate with me"

Jon, I'm really surprised you totally missed this point. You're actually in the business.

You dont think casting directors think about this stuff, when they cast roles? They know what the audience is thinking.

It helps to have the actor be as similar to the character as possible when casting roles in order to have cohesion with the audience.

2006-11-20 08:47:56
38.   dan reines

The Godfather example's a strange one, and it basically support's Jon's point. You don't seem thrown at all by the Jew with the curly blond hair they got to play Santino Corleone. Maybe because he's an actor, and a hell of a good one, and he was great for the part, regardless of his actual background? Isn't that why the call it acting?

I think your point is well-intentioned, but it seems like you're spending more effort trying to defend it than you spent thinking it up.

2006-11-20 11:46:53
39.   Brent is a Dodger Fan
Way late to his conversation:

Surprise me! I didn't know Rashida Jones was half-african-american. She doesn't look like a particularly specific ethnic heritage to me. She just looks... uh... "exotic".

Of course, Dwight thinks Karen could be either Italian or Filipino... :)

Okay, not to let that point hang. I guess JoeyP's point is mostly that he doesn't look at Rashida Jones and think "Italian", and JoeyP's perception is that he tends to see Italian-looking people playing Italians.

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