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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny as hell
One of the best series I've watched in years! I was turned on to "The Office" while I was deployed to Iraq in 2008 and watched every episode I could get my hands on. A great stress reliever. I recommend this to anybody with a semblance of a funny bone.
Published 13 months ago by Amazon Customer

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48 of 62 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Mixed Bag
Don't get me wrong, The Office isn't what it used to be, and Steve Carell's departure has hurt this flailing show taking everything into consideration. But it's too easy to point the finger at Catherine Tate and James Spader as reasons that this season was sub-par by Office standards and average by most other TV comedy standards. The fact is James Spader and Catherine...
Published on July 18, 2012 by C. D. White


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48 of 62 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Mixed Bag, July 18, 2012
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
Don't get me wrong, The Office isn't what it used to be, and Steve Carell's departure has hurt this flailing show taking everything into consideration. But it's too easy to point the finger at Catherine Tate and James Spader as reasons that this season was sub-par by Office standards and average by most other TV comedy standards. The fact is James Spader and Catherine Tate as Robert California and Nellie Bertram were actually continually funny throughout the season to me. And why that's so is because both of those characters are absolutely insane. That was the main ingrediant to what made the show head and shoulders above anything before it when it first started. It also had a compelling love story with Jim and Pam and besides those two characters pretty much everyone else was either completely bonkers and had some odd quirks. As the show has progressed, those characters were either toned down or became charicatures of themselves and the enduring love story has become painfully boring.

The main problem as any die hard Office fan knows stems from the writing. Andy was my favorite character and in a strange stroke of misfortune for me as a viewer Ed Helms became famous which meant the writers felt compelled to make Andy Bernard more like Stu Price. But what made Andy funny was that for the most part we used to laugh at him now we are supposed to laugh with him. The writers tried to shoehorn an upper class jerk with anger issues into a relatable character. In doing so we are basically supposed to forget who he used to be. I have been alternating watching season 3 and season 8 recently and the Andy of season 3 is a completely different person than the Andy of season 8. Real people don't change as much in 5 years as Andy has on this show, so why do the writers think we should accept this...in a mockumentary no less! But Andy is just one of many characters that has gone through this weird transformation from a quirky character into either a charaicature of themselves (Dwight, Kevin, Meredith etc.) or a bland version of the original character (Andy, Pam, Creed etc.). As others have said they tried to make Andy and Erin the new Jim and Pam but since Jim and Pam are ostensibly the only normal people (besides Darryl and Toby at first) it was doomed to fail. In fact, the Darryl and Val relationship was a way more compelling love story this season than Andy and Erin because again those two character are more or less normal.

But back to Robert and Nellie, like I said I thought they provided some of the best moments this season because they are weirdos. And along that line I think the people giving this season 1 star are overreacting. Obviously, the show is not what it used to be, but I still laugh at it occasionally and there were still some episodes this season that actually hung together for the whole episode. Also, I was encouraged with David Wallace coming back. I always HATED the Sabre story line so it's definitely a good thing to be rid of that. And frankly, I'm also not upset to see Mindy Kaling leave, she has been increasingly annoying as Kelly Kapoor since she and Ryan got back together. And I also think the increasing cutesyness and references to pop culure and internet sensations come from her as a writer so hopefully that stuff will stop now. Paul Lieberstien as Toby serves no purpose now that Michael is gone. Lieberstien as a writer may be missed but I can't remember a Lieberstien written episode that I like since season 4. So I don't know about that. I will say that I have low expectations for the planned Dwight spinoff that he will be the show runner of.

So with all of that being said I do think there are things that could possibly be good in season 9. And it's not like every second of this season was unwatchable...it's just not as good as it used to be. But sub par Office is still way better than above average Two and a Half Men.
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106 of 142 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A disaster, May 29, 2012
As much as I disliked Season 6 of The Office, in retrospect it was better than Season 8. Before the season began, we were told that because Michael Scott was no longer around the show was going to focus on the ensemble more. Instead we were fed a steady diet of Andy as the manager and his conflicts with Robert California (James Spadar) as CEO. This dull note was hit repeatedly leading to a series of repetitive episodes where Andy feels inadequate and the staff reassures him. The problem was that Andy has always been a buffoonish character and trying to shoehorn him into the central role didn't work. Couple that with the tiresome Andy/Erin relationship which had been stumbling around for three seasons without any real direction or coherence and we got a giant dose of Andy that no one wanted to see.

While Michael Scott may have been the comedic driver of the show through Season 7, it was the reactions of the rest of the cast, and especially Jim and Pam, which gave the show its emotional resonance. Now, Jim and Pam are given virtually nothing to do and the rest of the characters have been reduced to single note punch lines. John Krasinski should sue over the lack of forward motion for Jim. Jenna Fischer was also neglected this year, but some of that can be ascribed to her real life pregnancy. The treatment of the rest of the cast has been just as thoughtless. Kevin and Erin appear to be competing for some sort of stupidity award in which they barely seem like functional adults. This was especially problematic for Erin given that we were supposed to care about her romantic chances with Andy, but it mostly felt like a teenager mooning over her teacher. Stanley, Oscar and Meredith once again got little to no screen time.

About the only story of any value this year was the trip to Florida to set up the retail outlet for the Sabre tablet. This allowed for some interesting arcs using Jim and Dwight, but unfortunately also introduced us to Nellie (Catherine Tate). It seems obvious that Tate was supposed to take the manager's position, but a scheduling conflict prevented her from joining the show until mid-season. If they had given some thought into her integration into the show it might have worked, but once again no real long-term planning appears to have been done because their solution was to have her walk in one day and take Andy's job just by sitting down in his chair. Ridiculous.

This season failed on many levels and we can only hope that with a new showrunner they might come back stronger next year, but that seems like wishful thinking. As for Season 8, wait until the price drops if you have to have it to complete your collection. Otherwise skip it completely.
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33 of 43 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Crash and burn..., September 25, 2012
By 
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
Wow, in this past season of the Office, the show's quality fell straight off a cliff.

I'm fine with Michael leaving, there was plenty of comedic talent among the cast to make it an enjoyable show without him, but the writing was super lazy and no one seemed to have any idea where anything was going. This was most manifest in the two new characters they brought aboard. (SPOILERS ahead, for all who care)

James Spader as Robert California started out (in the season 7 finale) as a character that seemed to be either a genius or a con-man making it up as he went along. Throughout all of Season 8, it seemed like the writers never figured out for themselves what they wanted him to be. One episode he's a drunk screwing everything up. The next he's 3 steps ahead of everyone else. Ultimately he was both as he managed to run the company into the ground and yet convince David Wallace to give him a million dollars severance to go abroad Europe "training" teenage gymnasts in what had to be one of the dumbest character moments the show has ever had (I mean, really? David Wallace can't see through Robert's BS, but the entire office INCLUDING KEVIN can???? And they say NOTHING????).

Catherine Tate as Nellie. Plenty of fans hated her, and its not hard to see why. Personally, I think her character had potential, but again the writers didn't know who she was going to be. She seemed confidant and together for the Sable store stuff, then admits to the camera in a later episode she doesn't have any idea what she's doing. By the time she's in the main office she seemed like a new antagonist for Andy, but in some episodes they're trying to paint her sympathetically and give her relatable flaws (the memory box in the moving episode, the shopaholic stuff that Pam uncovers, the lame "fish-out-of-water" taco bit with Darryl) so is she supposed to be a character we hate or not? The result was that most fans really didn't like her but I, for one, have no idea if that was the actual intention.

Some plot threads were introduced just to be dropped without much development. Angela's baby, her possibly gay husband, California's wife, Andy's new girlfriend, that one lady trying to get Jim to sleep with her, etc. all seemed like they were going to be somewhat important only to surprise us by not getting much screen time after their introduction, with many things being wrapped up before they even have a chance to begin. It was like the writers lit a series of firecrackers only to have every single one of them not go off.

Other plot points were just stupid, plain and simple. I've already mentioned the boneheaded way California was sent off, but you can add Nellie getting Andy's job just by SITTING IN HIS CHAIR as the dumbest thing that's ever happened on this show. That was compounded by Andy KEEPING HER ON STAFF at the end, despite her constant efforts to wreck him up til this point (again, including TAKING HIS JOB). This show has already strayed pretty far from its realistic mockumentary roots, but this kinda stuff is so far beyond the realm of plausibility its honestly shocking the writers attempted to pass it off on a show like this.

There were other smaller issues too, but these major things, compounded by some unaddressed problems present in the last couple of years (Jim and Pam having nothing really to do now that they're married, Dwight's ever greater transformation to a living cartoon character) make this the worst year the Office has ever had.

If the one star rating seems a little harsh, let it be known that there were a few chuckle inducing moments (Kevin's disbelief that anyone would put a mummy in a museum was pretty great, and you can always count a few great Creed moments), and this is hardly the worst comedy on TV, but if the earlier seasons were 5 star, and the last couple of years were 3, I have no choice but to rate this season as a 1, it really was that bad in comparison to eveything that's come before it.

That said, I'll be watching season 9. Not only is it the final season of the show (so I might as well stick around to see it off), the premiere last Thursday had two great meta moments (everyone throwing trash at Nellie being the highlight for me) that seemed to be the writers acknowledging they've made some mistakes in season 8 and they're gonna make it better. Let's hope they do a better job with season 9. Cause with season 8 behind them, there's no other place to go but up.
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22 of 30 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Still smart, but the edge is gone...., May 28, 2012
I'm still a big fan of the show. From Season 1 on it's been witty and original. But this past season really hurt the program. Someone else said it damaged the legacy and that could be true. Perhaps losing Steve Carell was a big blow? Perhaps the story lines are just played out? Either way, the show just seems to have lost its steam. I heartily recommend anyone who loves intelligent, timely TV programming to pick up any of the prior seasons. Seasons 3-5 are as good as it gets. Season 8....just didn't do it for me. It was OK by most TV standards, but it doesn't live up to The Office as I know it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny as hell, September 16, 2013
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
One of the best series I've watched in years! I was turned on to "The Office" while I was deployed to Iraq in 2008 and watched every episode I could get my hands on. A great stress reliever. I recommend this to anybody with a semblance of a funny bone.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Two Words: What Happened?!, August 17, 2012
By 
Richard Costa (West Sayville, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
I got into The Office right before Steve Carell's departure and I found it hilarious. I spent a great deal of time last summer catching up on the first seven seasons of the show. Then Season 8 came, and if I would describe it in two words, they would be "train wreck".

First of all; what happened to Robert California. He was hilarious in the season seven finale, but they toned down his character so much, he becomes the very thing he was meant to spoof: being creepy and strange.

Secondly, that new girl, Nelly I think, She was terrible. She was very hard to watch and was an absolutely horrible character, and that's me being nice all right. She got Andy's job by just simply walking in and sitting down in his chair? How much are they paying these writers, well clearly not enough because they can't any who know how to actually write.

There were four good episodes of the season: "The List", "The Incentive", "Doomsday" and "Pam's Replacement". These four bring back memories of what the show used to be like. Every other episode of this season was pure trash. They better improve for Season 9 or believe me I am out.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars TVSHOW - Great!!! Vendor - Absolute CRAP!!!!, February 25, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Firstly, I love The Office, I watch it on a daily basis and therefore I needed to have this to complete my collection. Given the mixed reviews on this season, I ratherly enjoyed it, the show that is. I'm not going to go into review of the show but the terrible lack of quality in this collection.

Secondly, avoid this collection like the plague! I know this series has had a bunch of screw ups with the packaging and disc layouts and vendors. This collection blew all of them out of the water. Whoever is in charge of packaging must have crap for brains!

This collection is BLU-RAY on one side & DVD on the other. First mistake, all I want is BLU-RAY, now this set is bloated with 5 discs and is different from seasons 5 to 7 & 9 Blu-ray. Given the pure stupidity of these discs they are not printed on top like the other seasons and are more prone to scratching via shipping and also mishandling of the discs.

I returned this product because 3 out of 5 discs (blu-ray) were not even recognized from my blu-ray player (PS3) I actually managed to start the first episode but was rudely interrupted with constant freezing throughout the episode.

This set is lacking quality and completely unacceptable! Whoever released this dropped the ball hugely! They should've released this set just like the others, separate on blu-ray & DVD. Until they re-release this set I will never purchase this again!

DON'T BUY THIS SET AT ALL COSTS!
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15 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars When did this become passing for The Office?, July 21, 2012
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
It's hard to root for the demise of a television show when you know that it means some of your favorite actors will be put out of work. However, sometimes it's time to pull the plug, and this is one of those times. The show currently airing that bears the title of The Office is a mere shadow of a show that used to air and also bore the title of The Office. These two shows have almost nothing in common with each other, excepting the fact that their characters share names and are played by the same actors.

To give some perspective to this review, let me give you a brief synopsis of my feelings on the other seasons of The Office: 2 & 3 - five stars; 1 & 4 - four stars; 5, 6, & 7 - three stars. I hold the opinion of the majority in that I like seasons two and three the most, but I'm also not too hard on the other seasons. That should tell you how much of a farce this eighth season has been. Nothing about this season has any connection to the show's former life.

Long story short, if you've just started this show and are now compulsively buying seasons, stop at seven. If you are returning to this show after a hiatus, you will be disappointed. I wish I could unsee this season.
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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disastrous, July 16, 2012
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
I would have never predicted my favorite show on television, The Office, would have gone this sour, this fast. Its original main character, Michael Scott, played by Steve Carrel, has gotten married and moved away. Since the absence of Michael Scott, former salesman Andy Bernard, aka "The Nard Dog" has taken his place as the manager of the Scranton Branch for the paper company known as Sabre.
All fans knew The Office would never be the same again without Michael Scott, but I was still optimistic. I thought, that even though the bread and butter of this successful series would soon be gone, there were enough hilarious supporting characters throughout to keep this show watchable, even if it could never be absolutely fantastic again. But boy, was I wrong. This show has become so unbearingly unwatchable, and unfunny that I almost want to mourn over the memories I had of what this show used to be. Season 8 is genuinely awful, there's no getting around it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth a watch, October 2, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Office: Season 8 (DVD)
I had seen many mixed reviews about this, but I was 7 seasons deep and there was no going back. lol. I mostly enjoyed the series from the first episode. Robert C. adds a strange yet likeable mix to the series. Many characters got a nice leg up and chance to shine, like Stanley and Gabe. A few other characters were a bit less noteworthy. Overall it was a good watch, I can't complain.
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