The Office, “Happy Hour”: Her you-know-whats fill up with you-know-what.

“Happy Hour” was one of those rare (very, very rare) episodes of The Office that had a little bit of everything in it. Parts were funny, parts were unfunny. Michael lost one, Michael won one. People hooked up, people broke up. Add these things together and you get a highpoint in a season rife (RIFE!) with duds.

Leave it to The Office to name this episode “Happy Hour,” have Oscar go to Darryl in the very beginning and say, “Hey, why don’t we all go out for happy hour?” and then send him off to take his place in the background and pay as little attention as possible to him for the rest of the episode. Just what sort of big, gay agenda is the show trying to push on us? But seriously, Oscar just can’t seem to catch a break. And because going out for happy hour was his idea, you’d think he would get a little more screentime than he did. Oh well. I have a feeling that Oscar will live to fight again another day. Or the show will continue to build things up and pull the rug from under us in the follow-through. Yeah. It’ll probably be that one.

Oscar and his two minutes aside, a lot happened in this episode. Andy and Erin went public with their relationship. We saw the return of Isabelle, who still has her sights set on Dwight, and we were introduced to a possible new love interest for Michael. Looking back on things, all of these stories came together really well. As Jim might say, it left me smiling and satisfied.

It looked like Andy and Erin were taking a page from Jim and Pam’s playbook and keeping their relationship under wraps. When you look at how the show has handled these two characters, you realize there was about zero percent chance that they could continue keeping it a secret. Andy’s the sort of guy who couldn’t keep from bragging about a girlfriend for more than a couple of hours, if that, and Erin’s just so goofy that eventually she’d slip, or sit on Andy’s lap, and the entire thing would be blown. I liked the way Andy finally came out and said it and I think the funny thing is that everyone was so absorbed doing their own thing that I doubt many people noticed it. It’ll be interesting to see how the two proceed now that they’ve outed themselves. And I like the fact that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of pressure for the two of them to deliver the way there was for Jim and Pam. I mean, now that that’s taken care of, what else are we expecting? It would be nice to see Michael end up with someone by the time the series ends, but I won’t be pissed off if it just never happens.

Speaking of Michael, I thought it was surprising that Pam would try fixing him up with another one of her friends. I was even more surprised when Michael and Julie hit it off. The entire thing made a lot more sense when you realize that Michael doesn’t know he’s being set up, so he had no reason to lose the tie and flip his Kangol around backwards. When he does find out is where his story began losing some its steam for me. How many times have we seen Michael get into these situations? And until he barely kept himself from being thrown out of the bar, it looked like we were only going to get more of the same. That Michael may be falling into a relationship without even trying — I thought — saved his entire story tonight. Although I have to say that I felt a pang of sadness when Julie finally threw in the towel and went home. She seemed like such a nice girl. Amy Pietz, who played the bar manager, has been brought in for several episodes this season, so this one still has a while to play out. I fear it won’t end well, but I’ll remain cautiously optimistic.

Tonight’s other big development was Dwight finally moving on from Angela. I’m sure the fact that he had Isabelle hanging on his shoulder for almost the entire episode played no small role in this. I think it was a little unexpected to have Angela throw her contract with Dwight in his face once she realized she was losing him. And now that I think about, it seems a little strange that the show would go through the trouble of setting that up at all if Dwight was just going to end up with another woman. I assume it’ll be paid off later, but I guess you never know. Still, the conflict between the two women is enough to carry the whole thing a ways on its own. Angela moving in on the game of whack-a-mole, and Isabelle whacking her on the head at the end of the night was priceless. More of that, please.

On tonight’s episode we also discovered that Kevin is a disgusting pervert, who spent most of his time making baby noises at Pam’s chest so her you-know-whats would you-know-what. At first it was funny (question mark?), but quickly turned disturbing, mostly because I can’t get the sound of him laughing out of my head. That and his face. Take a good look at it, America. Take a good look, and you remember it.

Stuff I liked:

  • Dwight blurting out a curse word when Angela sneaks up on him.
  • Somehow I Manage by Michael Scott.
  • “I kill Yakuza Boss on purpose. I good surgeon!” Hill. Air. Eee. Us.
  • It was good to see Pam back, and to see her excited to be back.

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